[ source: 44045 ]

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Stans is the capital of the canton of Nidwalden (Nidwald) in Switzerland.

Stans is the capital of the canton of Nidwalden (Nidwald) in Switzerland.

Geography

The area of Stans is 11.08 km2 (4.28 sq mi). Much of the land within the borders of Stans is agricultural (43.7%), while just over a third (36.5%) is forested. Of the remaining area, about 17% is settlements and less than 2.6% is unproductive (mountains, rivers or glaciers).[7] The highest point within the borders of Stans is on the Stanserhorn and is 1,819 m (5,968 ft) above sea level. The lowest point is at Fronhofen where the elevation is 438 m (1,437 ft). The village square (Dorfplatz) has an elevation of 452 m (1,483 ft).

Climate

Stans has an average of 137.7 days of rain per year and on average receives 1,224 mm (48.2 in) of precipitation. The wettest month is August when Stans receives an average of 166 mm (6.5 in) of precipitation on 13.6 days. The month with the most days of precipitation is June, with an average of 14.2, but with only 156 mm (6.1 in) of precipitation. The driest month of the year is January with an average of 65 mm (2.6 in) of precipitation over 13.6 days.

Sights

The local mountain, the Stanserhorn (1,898 m (6,227 ft)) is also a tourist resort. It is accessible via one of the oldest mountain railways in Switzerland, the Stanserhornbahn (1893), and by cable car. The Stanserhornbahn was originally built as a rack and pinion railway, with three separate sections. In 1970 the upper section was destroyed by a fire following a lightning strike. In 1975 the destroyed upper section and the middle section were replaced by an aerial cable car. At the peak of the Stanserhorn is the Rondorama, a revolving restaurant that was built in 2001. From the peak of the Stanserhorn, on a clear day the view stretchs nearly 100 km (62 mi) and includes 10 Swiss lakes and the Black Forest of Germany. There is a short hiking trail around the peak of the Stanserhorn and a small population of Marmots are kept near the trail.

[ source: wikipedia ]

More about the History of Stans

Stans is one of the oldest settlements in the entire Nidwalden valley. The first traces of human settlement date to the 2nd Century BC. During the Roman era there is little evidence of a settlement except for some gallo-roman Ustrinum or funeral pyres and the Latin root (stagnum meaning a pool or sump) of the name Stans.

During the 7th or 8th Century the Alamanni settled in the region. The christian Alamanni built the first church in Stans around 750 AD. This pre-Carolingian church served as the parish church for the entire Engelberg Valley. The church was expanded numerous times until it was finally replaced in 1647 by the new church of St. Peter and Paul.

Stans was first mentioned in 1124. By 1291, when Unterwalden joined Uri and Schwyz in what became the Swiss Confederation, Stans was already the capital of the section known as Unterwalden nid dem Kernwald which would become the half canton of Nidwalden.

In 1386, during the Battle of Sempach, a soldier from Stans, Arnold von Winkelried, is claimed to have thrown himself on the pikes of the Habsburg army which led the Swiss to victory. However it is doubtful whether he existed or died in the battle as the first mention of his selfless act appears over 150 years after the battle and a man who may have been Arnold was party to a lawsuit in 1389. Regardless, the legend is firmly in place in Stans, with a monument and his house located in the town.

Following the Swiss victories in the Burgundian Wars the Old Swiss Confederation was nearly torn apart by internal conflict when the city cantons insisted on having the lion's share of the proceeds since they had supplied the most troops. The country cantons resented this and the Tagsatzung or leadership of each of the cantons met in Stans in 1481 to resolve the issues. However, they were unable to resolve the issues and war seemed inevitable. A local hermit, Niklaus von der Flüe, was consulted on the situation. He requested that a message be passed on to the members of the Tagsatzung on his behalf. The details of the message have remained unknown to this day, however it did calm the tempers and led to the drawing up of the Stanser Verkommnis. As part of the Verkommnis Fribourg and Solothurn were admitted into the confederation.

[ source: wikipedia ]

Stans is the capital of the canton of Nidwalden (Nidwald) in Switzerland.

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