BERLIN, capital of Germany, formerly capital of Prussia and of the German empire; stands on the Spree, in a flat sandy plain, 177 m. by rail SE. of Hamburg. The royal and imperial palaces, the great library, the university, national gallery and museums, and the arsenal are all near the centre of the city. There are schools of science, art, agriculture, and mining; technical and military academies; a cathedral and some old churches; zoological and botanical gardens. Its position between the Baltic and North Seas, the Spree, the numerous canals and railways which converge on it, render it a most important commercial centre; its staple trade is in grain, cattle, spirits, and wool. Manufactures are extensive and very varied; the chief are woollens, machinery, bronze ware, drapery goods, and beer.