Under the regency of the Bavarian electors, Munich was an important centre of baroque life, but also had to suffer under Habsburg occupations in 17.In 1806, the city became the capital of the new Kingdom of Bavaria, with the state's parliament (the Landtag) and the new archdiocese of Munich and Freising being located in the city.Like wide parts of the Holy Roman Empire, the area recovered slowly economically.Having evolved from a duchy's capital into that of an electorate (1623), and later a sovereign kingdom (1806), Munich has been a major European centre of arts, architecture, culture and science since the early 19th century, heavily sponsored by the Bavarian monarchs.The city is a major centre of art, advanced technologies, finance, publishing, culture, innovation, education, business, and tourism in Germany and Europe and enjoys a very high standard and quality of living, reaching first in Germany and fourth worldwide according to the 2015 Mercer survey.The name of the city is derived from the Old/Middle High German term Munichen, meaning "by the monks", which in turn is derived from Mönch (which in the end derives from ancient Greek μοναχός). Black and gold – the colours of the Holy Roman Empire – have been the city's official colours since the time of Ludwig the Bavarian, when it was an imperial residence.
Many of the city's finest buildings belong to this period and were built under the first three Bavarian kings.
Munich hosts more than 530,000 people of foreign background, making up 37.7% of its population.
The first known settlement in the area was of Benedictine monks on the Old Salt Route.
Especially Ludwig I rendered outstanding services to Munich's status as a centre of the arts, attracting numerous artists and enhancing the city's architectural substance with grand boulevards and buildings.
On the other hand, Ludwig II, famous the world over as the fairytale king, was mostly aloof from his capital and focused more on his fanciful castles in the Bavarian countryside.