The current building of Church of Our Lady dates from the 13th century. The church was originally dedicated to Saint Vitus. It served as market church of the city and later also as church of the city council. Around 1020, a new building was erected of which only the crypt still exists, decorated with medieval frescos. The church was extended to form a basilica in the middle of the 12th century. Around 1220, it was consecrated to the Virgin Mary. From 1230 onwards, it was rebuilt in the early Gothic style as a hall church. A westwork with two towers was added. For many years, the northern tower contained the archive of the city council of Bremen, known as the Tresekammer. In the 14th century, the choir was extended.
The interior was damaged by fire in 1944, but much less than the other medieval churches of the city. When the new organ was installed in 1953, the acoustics were so poor that in 1958 the city assigned Dieter Oesterlen to manage the church's refurbishment. The residual medieval plastering and the remains of the frescos were removed, leaving plain brick walls. In 1966, the French artist Alfred Manessier was charged with redesigning the 19 windows that had been destroyed during the Second World War. Inspired by verses from the Bible, he embarked first on the design of the four main windows, employing brightly coloured stained glass representations with expressive linear patterns.
The flour of the church comprisies some medieval tombstones, but there are no medieval sculpures, if there had been any, they have been removed during the reformation. But there are two sculptures from the 19th century.
After World War I, the architect Otto Blendermann from Bremen and the sculptor Friedrich Lommel from Munich created a war memorial in honour of the dead soldiers of Bremen garrison. In 2011, it was converted into a memorial for all victims of all wars. Since then, panes of opalescent glass on the walls bear a biblical admonition to keep peace, and panes of opalescent glass hiding the sculpture bear the names of the soldiers.References:
Angelokastro is a Byzantine castle on the island of Corfu. It is located at the top of the highest peak of the island"s shoreline in the northwest coast near Palaiokastritsa and built on particularly precipitous and rocky terrain. It stands 305 m on a steep cliff above the sea and surveys the City of Corfu and the mountains of mainland Greece to the southeast and a wide area of Corfu toward the northeast and northwest.
Angelokastro is one of the most important fortified complexes of Corfu. It was an acropolis which surveyed the region all the way to the southern Adriatic and presented a formidable strategic vantage point to the occupant of the castle.
Angelokastro formed a defensive triangle with the castles of Gardiki and Kassiopi, which covered Corfu"s defences to the south, northwest and northeast.
The castle never fell, despite frequent sieges and attempts at conquering it through the centuries, and played a decisive role in defending the island against pirate incursions and during three sieges of Corfu by the Ottomans, significantly contributing to their defeat.
During invasions it helped shelter the local peasant population. The villagers also fought against the invaders playing an active role in the defence of the castle.
The exact period of the building of the castle is not known, but it has often been attributed to the reigns of Michael I Komnenos and his son Michael II Komnenos. The first documentary evidence for the fortress dates to 1272, when Giordano di San Felice took possession of it for Charles of Anjou, who had seized Corfu from Manfred, King of Sicily in 1267.
From 1387 to the end of the 16th century, Angelokastro was the official capital of Corfu and the seat of the Provveditore Generale del Levante, governor of the Ionian islands and commander of the Venetian fleet, which was stationed in Corfu.
The governor of the castle (the castellan) was normally appointed by the City council of Corfu and was chosen amongst the noblemen of the island.
Angelokastro is considered one of the most imposing architectural remains in the Ionian Islands.