Dömitz Fortress

Dömitz, Germany

From a strategic point of view the mighty Dömitz fortress could hardly have been built in a better location: It protected the south-western border of Mecklenburg and the Elbe crossings. Furthermore, duties could be levied on the Elbe.

The pentagon-shaped Renaissance fortress was erected between 1559 und 1565 under Duke Johann Albrecht I. The architect was Francesco a Bornau, an Italian. From the 18th century on, the fortress served as a prison. The most famous prisoner was the Mecklenburg author Fritz Reuter, who had to spend some years here in the 19th century.

The Dömitz Fortress survived the centuries without appreciable destruction. In the year 1975 it was declared a protected monument.

Today many parts of the fortress are accessible to visitors. From the ramparts you can overlook the entire complex. In the casemates you can imagine how the prisoners in the fortress felt. The exhibitions in the gun powder magazine and in the commander’s house tell about the history of the fortress and the town of Dömitz.

References:

Comments

Your name

Website (optional)



Details

Founded: 1559-1565
Category: Castles and fortifications in Germany
Historical period: Reformation & Wars of Religion (Germany)

Rating

4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Michael griesche (5 months ago)
Ein Ort wo man Zeit braucht, aber auch Interesse für mittelalterliche Geschichte einfach viel zu entdecken vor allem wenn man erst erkundet hat und dann in das Museum geht wo eine Miniatur vorhandenen ist toll gemacht
Heiko (8 months ago)
Ok
Tadge (9 months ago)
Interesting place. Great cafe nearby that backs onto the old border- entrance on the main road
Joshua Carney (14 months ago)
Wonderful place to enjoy an afternoon
Roger Longden (2 years ago)
Made a special trip across from Celle today only to find that the main commandants house was closed - that fact was overlooked at the cash desk! More than worth a visit if you get the chance though- a time capsule
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Jelling Runestones

The Jelling stones are massive carved runestones from the 10th century, found at the town of Jelling in Denmark. The older of the two Jelling stones was raised by King Gorm the Old in memory of his wife Thyra. The larger of the two stones was raised by King Gorm's son, Harald Bluetooth in memory of his parents, celebrating his conquest of Denmark and Norway, and his conversion of the Danes to Christianity. The runic inscriptions on these stones are considered the most well known in Denmark.

The Jelling stones stand in the churchyard of Jelling church between two large mounds. The stones represent the transitional period between the indigenous Norse paganism and the process of Christianization in Denmark; the larger stone is often cited as Denmark's baptismal certificate (dåbsattest), containing a depiction of Christ. They are strongly identified with the creation of Denmark as a nation state and both stones feature one of the earliest records of the name 'Danmark'.

After having been exposed to all kinds of weather for a thousand years cracks are beginning to show. On the 15th of November 2008 experts from UNESCO examined the stones to determine their condition. Experts requested that the stones be moved to an indoor exhibition hall, or in some other way protected in situ, to prevent further damage from the weather.

Heritage Agency of Denmark decided to keep the stones in their current location and selected a protective casing design from 157 projects submitted through a competition. The winner of the competition was Nobel Architects. The glass casing creates a climate system that keeps the stones at a fixed temperature and humidity and protects them from weathering. The design features rectangular glass casings strengthened by two solid bronze sides mounted on a supporting steel skeleton. The glass is coated with an anti-reflective material that gives the exhibit a greenish hue. Additionally, the bronze patina gives off a rusty, greenish colour, highlighting the runestones' gray and reddish tones and emphasising their monumental character and significance.