Iași, also referred to mostly historically as Jassy, is the second largest city in Romania and the seat of Iași County. Located in the historical region of Moldavia, it has traditionally been one of the leading centres of Romanian social, cultural, academic and artistic life. The city was the capital of the Principality of Moldavia from 1564 to 1859, then of the United Principalities from 1859 to 1862, and the capital of Romania from 1916 to 1918.
Known as the Cultural Capital of Romania, Iași is a symbol of Romanian history. Historian Nicolae Iorga stated that "there should be no Romanian who does not know of it". Still referred to as "The Moldavian Capital", Iași is the main economic and business centre of Romania's Moldavian region. In December 2018, Iași was officially declared the Historical Capital of Romania.
At the 2011 census, the city-proper had a population of 290,422. Counting 500,668 residents as of 2018, the Iași urban area is the second most populous in Romania after Bucharest, whereas more than 500,000 people live within its peri-urban area.
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