A bell tower in the centre of Chișinău, Moldova.
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By the late 19th century the city had become home to a large Jewish population, but simmering anti-Semitism within the Russian Empire manifested in brutal pogroms in 1903 and 1905. The bloodshed in Kishinyov was immortalized in verse by Hebrew poet Haim Naḥman Bialik. Following World War I, the city was included in Romania as Chișinău, but it was ceded with the rest of Bessarabia back to the Soviet Union in 1940 and became the capital of the newly formed Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic. Heavy damage was inflicted on the city in World War II, but after the war Kishinyov was rebuilt. Newer parts of the city lie on terraces along the Bâcu; parts of the old town, however, are still subject to flooding. With the collapse of Soviet authority in Moldavia in 1991, the Romanian-language version of the city’s name once more came into official use.
Chișinău is the major industrial centre of Moldova and is especially important for light engineering and the manufacture of measuring equipment, machine tools, tractors, pumps, refrigerators, washing machines, and insulated wiring. Wine making, flour milling, and tobacco processing are notable among the city’s agriculture-related industries. There are also clothing and footwear factories. The city is the cultural centre of Moldova, with an academy of sciences, a university (1945), other institutions of higher education, and several scientific research establishments. Pop. (2004) 598,000; (2014 est.) 674,500.