The almost completely preserved old town documents the importance of Regensburg in the Middle Ages. Together with the St. Peter’s Cathedral and the Stone Bridge from the 12th century, they form a unique historical ensemble of around 1000 monuments in a very small space. This also includes the Stadtamhof district on the other side of the Danube.
Old town of Regensburg: facts
|Official title:||Old town of Regensburg with Stadtamhof|
|Cultural monument:||Uniform medieval city center of the east Bavarian city with buildings of Romanesque and Gothic origin as well as traces of Roman settlements; defining buildings of the cityscape from the 11th to 13th centuries such as the old town hall, St. Peter’s Cathedral, market, stone bridge (800 years only bridge over the Danube, connecting the old town and the Stadtamhof district); Numerous ornate church and monastery buildings as well as characteristic patrician houses with dynasty towers (12th-14th centuries), inner courtyards and house chapels; Old town with winding streets, medieval fortifications, towers and vaults; Johannes Kepler’s house is the oldest surviving wooden house (1250) in Germany|
|Location:||Regensburg, Upper Palatinate, Bavaria|
|Meaning:||Unique, exceptionally well-preserved core of a medieval trading town; authentic picture of medieval urban culture; Unique testimony to the economic, denominational and political development in the High Middle Ages in Europe|
Old town of Regensburg: history
|179||Foundation of the Roman legion camp Castra Regina with a large civil settlement|
|535||Immigration of the Bavarians into the area, until 788 the headquarters of the Bavarian dukes (Agilolfinger)|
|739||Founding of a diocese by Boniface|
|788||Deposition of Duke Tassilos, Regensburg Carolingian palace|
|9th century||since Ludwig the German (805-876) preferred residence of the East Franconian Empire|
|10th century||Central state parliament of the Duchy of Bavaria until the middle of the 13th century|
|13th century||Independent imperial city thanks to the privileges of King Philip of Swabia (1207) and Frederick II (1230, especially 1245)|
|1256||Accession to the Rhenish Association of Cities|
|1382||Joined the Swabian Association of Cities|
|1486-1492||Temporary affiliation to Bavaria|
|1542||Conversion of Regensburg to the Reformation (from the 19th century again predominantly Catholic due to immigration)|
|1663-1806||Meeting of the “Perpetual Reichstag” among the principal commissioners|
|1803||Unification of Regensburg with the imperial monasteries Sankt-Emmeram, Ober- and Niedermünster and the bishopric to the principality of Regensburg under Karl Theodor, baron of Dalberg|
|1810||After the conquest by the French (1809) part of Bavaria|
Unique evidence of medieval building culture
A few years ago Regensburg was mainly known as the home of the Regensburger Domspatzen, but that changed suddenly in 2006 when UNESCO decided to include the old town of Regensburg on its list of world cultural heritage.
And the old town of Regensburg is really intact, because in contrast to many other historically shaped cities, it was spared the air raids of the Second World War. What visitors get to see here are not reconstructions, but the original buildings from the Middle Ages. The part of the city that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site corresponds to the extent of Regensburg in 1320 and comprises a total of 984 individual monuments. The history of Regensburg begins long before the Middle Ages, namely in 179, when the Roman Emperor Mark Aurel established his military base Castra Regina here. And even after that, many rulers recognized the benefits of the city on the Danube. Under Charlemagne, Regensburg was founded in the 8th It became the residence of the Carolingians in the 18th century and remained an important political meeting place of the Carolingian Empire and the Holy Roman Empire for over 1000 years; The Perpetual Reichstag met there from 1663 to 1806. The political importance of the city on the Danube did not end until 1810, when the former Free Imperial City was awarded to the Kingdom of Bavaria.
The heyday of Regensburg was in the Middle Ages. In the 12th and 13th centuries, the city on the Danube was even the most populous and wealthiest city in southern Germany, according to dentistrymyth. The important buildings to which Regensburg owes its status as a World Heritage Site, including the St. Peter’s Cathedral, the Stone Bridge, the Old Town Hall (13th-18th centuries), the St. Emmeram Monastery and the Minorites, were built at this time – and the Dominican Church – the largest mendicant churches in Germany. The numerous preserved patrician houses and dynasty towers that make the old town of Regensburg so unique also date from the Middle Ages. The city’s rise was largely due to its location on the Danube and on several important trade routes. This position was reinforced, when Regensburg became a free imperial city in 1245. It was not until the 14th century that the city was slowly overtaken by the up-and-coming competitors Augsburg and Nuremberg. After the union with Bavaria, Regensburg finally rose to become a provincial town. This did not change until 1967 with the establishment of the university and the settlement of new industries.
In order to express the wealth that it had acquired through trade, the patrician families of the city had stately houses and family towers built. These magnificent medieval buildings can still be admired today on Bismarckplatz, Haidplatz, Rathausplatz, Alter Kornmarkt or in Goliathstraße. The Goliath House at 4 Goliathstrasse is particularly worth seeing. It dates from the first half of the 13th century, but is famous above all for its monumental fresco David and Goliath, which was painted by Melchior Bocksberger around 1570/80. With the early Gothic west tower and its battlements, the patrician house is almost reminiscent of a castle, but these architectural details were only used for representational purposes. On the west bank of Goliathstrasse is one of the most beautiful towers of all generations: the richly decorated seven-storey Baumburger tower from 1270.