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The Bebelplatz (formerly Opernplatz) is a public square in Berlinmarker, the capital of Germanymarker. The square is on the south side of the Unter den Lindenmarker, a major east-west thoroughfare in the centre of the city. It is bounded to the east by the State Operamarker building (hence its prewar name), to the west by buildings of Humboldt Universitymarker, and to the south by St. Hedwig's Cathedralmarker, Berlin's oldest Roman Catholic church. The square is named after August Bebel, a leader of the Social Democratic Party of Germany in the 19th century.

The square, then called Platz am Opernhaus, was built between 1741 and 1743 under Frederick II of Prussia. From 1911 until 1947 it was called Kaiser-Franz-Josef-Platz, after Emperor Franz Josef.

The Bebelplatz is best known as the site of the book burning ceremony held on May 10, 1933 by members of the S.A.marker ("brownshirts") and Nazi youth groups, on the instigation of the Propaganda Minister, Joseph Goebbels. The Nazis burned around 20,000 books, including works by Thomas Mann, Erich Maria Remarque, Heinrich Heine, Karl Marx and many other authors.

The buildings surrounding the square were largely destroyed during World War II and later restored.

Today a glass plate set into the Bebelplatz, giving a view of empty bookcases, commemorates the book burning. Furthermore, a line of Heinrich Heine is engraved, stating "Dort, wo man Bücher verbrennt, verbrennt man am Ende auch Menschen" (in English: "Where they burn books, they ultimately burn people"). Students at Humboldt University hold a book sale in the square every year to mark the anniversary.

In 2006 an exhibition of "United Buddy Bears" was held in the square, for the third time in Berlin. The exhibition consisted of more than 140 bear sculptures, each two metres high and designed by a different artist.

Image:PICT4089.JPG|The Bebelplatz looking north towards the Unter den Linden.Image:Bebelplatz_Night_of_Shame_Monument.jpg|Monument to the May 10, 1933 Book burning


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