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A city is a large human settlement. It can be defined as a permanent and densely settled place with administratively defined boundaries whose members work primarily on non-agricultural tasks. Cities generally have extensive systems for housing, transportation, sanitation, utilities, land use, and communication. Their density facilitates interaction between people, government organisations and businesses, sometimes benefiting different parties in the process, such as improving efficiency of goods and service distribution. This concentration also can have significant negative consequences, such as forming urban heat islands, concentrating pollution, and stressing water supplies and other resources.

Historically, city-dwellers have been a small proportion of humanity overall, but following two centuries of unprecedented and rapid urbanization, roughly half of the world population now lives in cities, which has had profound consequences for global sustainability. Present-day cities usually form the core of larger metropolitan areas and urban areas—creating numerous commuters traveling towards city centres for employment, entertainment, and edification. However, in a world of intensifying globalisation, all cities are to varying degrees also connected globally beyond these regions. This increased influence means that cities also have significant influences on global issues, such as sustainable development, global warming and global health. Because of these major influences on global issues, the international community has prioritized investment in sustainable cities through Sustainable Development Goal 11.

Other important traits of cities besides population include the capital status and relative continued occupation of the city. For example, country capitals such as Abu Dhabi, Amsterdam, Athens, Beijing, Berlin, Brasilia, Buenos Aires, Cairo, Canberra, Copenhagen, Helsinki, Lisbon, London, Madrid, Mexico City, Moscow, New Delhi, Ottawa, Paris, Rome, San José, Santiago, Seoul, Tokyo, Taipei, Ulaanbaatar, Warsaw, and Washington, D.C. reflect their nation's identity. Some historic capitals, such as Kyoto, maintain their reflection of cultural identity even without modern capital status. Religious holy sites offer another example of capital status within a religion, Jerusalem, Mecca, and Varanasi each hold significance. The cities of Faiyum, Damascus, and Argos are among those laying claim to the longest continual inhabitation.

City Media

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The upper reaches of Frost Bank Tower, a prominent Austin, Texas, skyscraper

The upper reaches of Frost Bank Tower, a prominent Austin, Texas, skys...

Title, date, and keywords based on information provided by the photographer. The 33-story building was developed by Cousins Properties from November 2001 to December 2003. It was the first high- rise building t... more

Bow Tower.  Calgary.

Bow Tower. Calgary.

Stretching 58 storeys high into the city skyline, The Bow has set the bar for office towers in Calgary. The architectural wonder, with its diagonal ribbons of crossbracing wrapping around a semicircular glass t... more

Paris Las Vegas.

Paris Las Vegas.

Paris Las Vegas is a hotel and casino located on the Las Vegas Strip in Paradise, Nevada. It is owned and operated by Caesars Entertainment Corporation...The theme is the city of Paris, France; it includes a ha... more

Berlin 1937, Berliner Dom (Berlin Cathedral)

Berlin 1937, Berliner Dom (Berlin Cathedral)

Beskrivelse:Domkirken i Berlin. Pyntede gater i Berlin, Arbeidets dag (1. mai)/ Berlins 700 års jubileum. Store folkemengder, flagg med hakekors. Maistang. Berliner Dom..Fotograf: Thomas Neumann.År: 1937.Kamera... more

[World Trade Center Skyline at Night, New York City]

[World Trade Center Skyline at Night, New York City]

Title: [World Trade Center Skyline at Night, New York City]. .Creator: Richie, Robert Yarnall ..Date: 1971..Place: New York, New York..Part Of: Robert Yarnall Richie photographs..Physical Description: 1 trans... more

I.K. Inha, Helsinki d2005_132_640

I.K. Inha, Helsinki d2005_132_640

Tallberg Building on Aleksanterinkatu. / Tallbergin talo Alkesanterinkadulla..I.K. Inha.1908.Helsinki.Glass negative / lasinegatiivi.Accession Number / diaarinumero: d_2005_132_640.The Finnish Museum of Photogr... more

Irving Trust Bldg., 1 Wall St.

Irving Trust Bldg., 1 Wall St.

JO8624 U.S. Copyright Office. No. C 20599. Copyright by Irving Underhill, Inc., N.Y.C.

Texaco

Texaco

Title: Texaco ..Creator: Robert Yarnall Richie ..Date: ca. August 12, 1963 - November 25, 1963..Place: Fairbanks, Texas..Physical Description: 1 transparency: film, color; 10 x 13 cm. ..File: ag1982_0... more

[Statue of Liberty at Dusk]

[Statue of Liberty at Dusk]

Title: [Statue of Liberty at Dusk]..Creator: Robert Yarnall Richie, 1908-1984..Date: November 9, 1965..Place: New York Harbor, Manhattan, New York..Part Of: Robert Yarnall Richie photograph collection..Descript... more

[Statue of Liberty and Lighted Brooklyn Bridge]

[Statue of Liberty and Lighted Brooklyn Bridge]

Title: [Statue of Liberty and Lighted Brooklyn Bridge]..Creator: Robert Yarnall Richie, 1908-1984..Date: November 9, 1965..Place: New York Harbor, Manhattan, New York..Part Of: Robert Yarnall Richie photograph ... more

[Statue of Liberty with Lower Manhattan in Background]

[Statue of Liberty with Lower Manhattan in Background]

Title: [Statue of Liberty with Lower Manhattan in Background] ..Creator: Robert Yarnall Richie, 1908-1984..Date: November 9, 1965..Place: New York Harbor, Manhattan, New York..Part Of: Robert Yarnall Richie pho... more

[Statue of Liberty at Sunset]

[Statue of Liberty at Sunset]

Title: [Statue of Liberty at Sunset]..Creator: Robert Yarnall Richie, 1908-1984..Date: November 9, 1965..Place: New York Harbor, Manhattan, New York..Part Of: Robert Yarnall Richie photograph collection..Descri... more

Historic Electric City sign, restored in 2008, shines again. Scranton, Pennsylvania

Historic Electric City sign, restored in 2008, shines again. Scranton,...

Title, date, and subjects provided by the photographer. Credit line: Carol M. Highsmith's America, Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division. Gift and purchase ; Carol M. Highsmith; 2009; (DLC/PP-201... more

Dodge Brothers Motor Car Company Plant, Between Joseph Campau & Conant Avenues, Hamtramck, Wayne County, MI

Dodge Brothers Motor Car Company Plant, Between Joseph Campau & Conant...

Significance: It served as the major manufacturing and assembly plant for the Dodge automobile and is the last large reinforced concrete automobile plant left in the Detroit area. The Dodge factory led to the ... more

City in Syria from BL Royal 20 D I, f. 361v

City in Syria from BL Royal 20 D I, f. 361v

Bas-de-page miniature of siege of a city in Syria. Image taken from f. 361v of Histoire ancienne jusqu'à César, part 3 of the second redaction. Written in French.

Burning of a city from BL Royal 19 D I, f. 45

Burning of a city from BL Royal 19 D I, f. 45

Miniature of a city being burnt to prevent its capture by Perdiccas. Image taken from f. 45 of Historia de proeliis, translated in French as La vraie ystoire dou bon roi Alixandre, and other romances. Written in French.

City of Baghdad from BL Royal 19 D I, f. 64

City of Baghdad from BL Royal 19 D I, f. 64

Detail of a miniature of the city of Baghdad. Image taken from f. 64 of Historia de proeliis, translated in French as La vraie ystoire dou bon roi Alixandre, and other romances. Written in French.

Civitas (City) from BL Royal 6 E VI, f. 270v

Civitas (City) from BL Royal 6 E VI, f. 270v

Detail of a historiated initial 'O' of the New Jerusalem. Image taken from f. 270v of Omne Bonum (Circumcisio-Dona Spiritui Sancti). Written in Latin.

Surrender of a city from BL Royal 20 B XX, f. 34

Surrender of a city from BL Royal 20 B XX, f. 34

Detail of a miniature of the surrender of the keys to a city. Image taken from f. 34 of Historia de proelis in a French translation (Le Livre et le vraye hystoire du bon roy Alixandre)(index Alexandre). Written... more

Burning of a city from BL Royal 20 B XX, f. 94v

Burning of a city from BL Royal 20 B XX, f. 94v

Detail of a miniature of a city being burnt to prevent its capture by Perdiccas. Image taken from f. 94v of Historia de proelis in a French translation (Le Livre et le vraye hystoire du bon roy Alixandre)(index... more

Pavise with the Arms of Winterthur and Saint George

Pavise with the Arms of Winterthur and Saint George

Units of crossbowmen used shields or pavises like this example to form a wall of protection while loading and aiming their crossbows. This pavise is part of a group that survived in the arsenal of the Swiss cit... more

Alexander attacking a city from BL Royal 15 E VI, f. 13

Alexander attacking a city from BL Royal 15 E VI, f. 13

Detail of a miniature of Alexander attacking a city. Image taken from f. 13 of Poems and Romances (the 'Talbot Shrewsbury book'). Written in French.

Surrender of a city of Alexander from BL Royal 15 E VI, f. 12v

Surrender of a city of Alexander from BL Royal 15 E VI, f. 12v

Detail of a miniature of the surrender of a city to Alexander. Image taken from f. 12v of Poems and Romances (the 'Talbot Shrewsbury book'). Written in French.

Alexander attacking a city from BL Royal 15 E VI, f. 13

Alexander attacking a city from BL Royal 15 E VI, f. 13

Miniature of Alexander attacking a city. Image taken from f. 13 of Poems and Romances (the 'Talbot Shrewsbury book'). Written in French.

Spanish Translation of Saint Augustine's "City of God"

Spanish Translation of Saint Augustine's "City of God"

Cano de Aranda (Spanish, active Toledo)

Siege of a Breton city from BL Royal 17 F II, f. 70

Siege of a Breton city from BL Royal 17 F II, f. 70

Miniature of a siege of a Breton city by the Roman army, with a partial border containing the royal arms of England held by a lion. Image taken from f. 70 of La grant hystoire Cesar, i.e. Les faits des Romains,... more

Siege of a Breton city from BL Royal 17 F II, f. 70

Siege of a Breton city from BL Royal 17 F II, f. 70

Detail of a miniature of a siege of a Breton city by the Roman army. Image taken from f. 70 of La grant hystoire Cesar, i.e. Les faits des Romains, with additional texts. Written in French.

Assault on a city and castle from BL Royal 20 E III, f. 30v

Assault on a city and castle from BL Royal 20 E III, f. 30v

Detail of a miniature of an assault on a city and castle. Image taken from f. 30v of Chroniques de France ou de Saint Denis (from 1108 to 1270). Written in French.

Assault of a city and castle from BL Royal 20 E III, f. 30v

Assault of a city and castle from BL Royal 20 E III, f. 30v

Miniature of an assault on a city and castle. Image taken from f. 30v of Chroniques de France ou de Saint Denis (from 1108 to 1270). Written in French.

Rivierlandschap met een herder

Rivierlandschap met een herder

Een rivierlandschap met rechts op de voorgrond een liggende herder met zijn hond. Aan de overzijde van de rivier liggen bergen en een stad.

People Fleeing a Burning City

People Fleeing a Burning City

Anonymous, French, School of Fontainebleau, 16th century

Storming a City

Storming a City

Anonymous, Italian, 16th century (Italian, active Central Italy, ca. 1550–1580)

Venus en Amor gedragen door dolfijnen

Venus en Amor gedragen door dolfijnen

Venus en Amor zitten ieder op een dolfijn of zeemonster. Op de achtergrond een kust met een stad. Aan de hemel de blazende winden.

Basilisk Supporting the Arms of the city of Basel

Basilisk Supporting the Arms of the city of Basel

Master DS (Swiss, active 1503–1515)

Gezicht op de stad Keulen

Gezicht op de stad Keulen

De stad Keulen met een grote kerk en molen.

Vaandeldrager

Vaandeldrager

Een vaandelddrager zwaaiend met zijn vaandel. Op de achtergrond een landschap met een rivier en een stad.

Stadsplein met ruiterstandbeeld van Marcus Aurelius

Stadsplein met ruiterstandbeeld van Marcus Aurelius

Een perspectivische weergave van een stadsplein met rechts achterin het ruiterstandbeeld van Marcus Aurelius. Een jongeman tekent het beeld na. Reconstructie van het Romeinse Capitool. Mogelijk een weergave van... more

Landschap met een rivier en een stad op een heuvel

Landschap met een rivier en een stad op een heuvel

Landschap met een rivier en een stad op een heuvel.