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The origins of Utrecht can be traced back to the Roman Empire, when it was founded in approximately the year 50 AD. Many remains of this era are still visible in present-day Utrecht: for example, one of the best-preserved Roman walls in Europe (the "Vechtbrug") and a Roman marketplace dating from around 300 AD have been excavated. From the 7th century onwards, Frankish kings initiated several ambitious building projects in Utrecht; these culminated during Charlemagne's reign (768–814) when he established his court there and constructed a palatine chapel now known as Aachen Cathedral. In 830 under King Egbert I of Wessex laid siege to Utrecht but failed to take it after an eight-month siege; however, he destroyed much of its territory including fortifications such as those at Oudenburg and Vredenburg which were never rebuilt again..