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In 2017, Aarhus has been selected as European Capital of Culture along with Paphos in Cyprus.
With the Danish spelling reform of 1948, "Aa" was changed to "Å".
Whichever spelling local authorities choose, most newspapers and public institutions will accept it.
Some official authorities such as the Danish Language Committee, publisher of the Danish Orthographic Dictionary, still retain "Århus" as the main name, providing "Aarhus" as a new, second option, in brackets and some institutions are still using "Århus" explicitly in their official name, such as the local newsmedia Århus Stiftstidende and the schools Århus Kunstakademi and Århus Statsgymnasium for example.
Many public and religious buildings were built in and around the city; notably Aarhus Cathedral was initiated in the late 12th century by the influential bishop Peder Vognsen.
The city was founded on the northern shores of a fjord at a natural harbour and the primary driver of growth was for centuries seaborne trade in agricultural products.
In 1657, octroi was imposed in larger Danish cities which changed the layout and face of Aarhus over the following decades.
Wooden city walls were erected to prevent smuggling, with gates and toll booths on the major thoroughfares, Mejlgade and Studsgade.
In the 900s an earth rampart for the defence of the early city was constructed, encircling the settlement, much like the defence structures found at Viking ring fortresses elsewhere.
The rampart was later reinforced by Harald Bluetooth, and together with the town's geographical placement, this suggests that Aros was an important trade and military centre.