Some old sources spell the city's name "Malmédy" as this accent was intentionally added when being part of Prussia and Germany, but its official website lists it as "Malmedy", with no accent. In 1919 the city was annexed by the treaty of Versailles to Belgium from Germany. Along with the neighboring city of Eupen, it formed a German-speaking area of Belgium. From 1940–1945, Malmedy was re-incorporated into Germany. This was reversed after the war.
Under the complex administrative structures of Belgium, which has separate structures for territorial administration and for language community rights, Malmedy is part of the Walloon Region and of the French Community of Belgium. But since it has a significant German speaking minority, it is one of Belgium's municipalities with language facilities (or "municipalities with facilities"). Malmedy and Waimes are the two municipalities in the Walloon Region with facilities for German speakers. The population of Malmedy is approximately 80% Francophones (French speakers) and 20% German speakers. The variety of German spoken there is Moselle Franconian.
The main church of Malmedy was built in 1777 and served as a cathedral from 1920 to 1925. It still holds the title of cathedral. Malmedy was historically part of a clerical microstate, the Principality of Stavelot-Malmedy, but was annexed by France in 1795 and by Prussia in 1815.
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