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Tradition says that they were invented by a baker in Budapest, in 1686, when the city was being besieged by the Turks (hence the crescent shape); but while this might be right, there are other claimants.
Croissants are found in various guises throughout Europe, sometimes (as in Poland and Austria) being fairly sweet. They can also have various flavours such as almond - the most popular being chocolate.
It" thought by may historians that they were introduced, or certainly popularised, in France by Marie Antoinette, upon her marriage to Louis XV1. See 'Marie Antoinette";'Pain au chocolat'