The 48-hectare landscaped park on the edge of Weimar’s old town is part of a kilometre-long stretch of green along the Ilm. It was laid between 1778 and 1828 and features both sentimental, classical and post-classical/romantic styles.
The creation of the park on the Ilm river is closely linked with Goethe’s life and work in Weimar. In 1776, Duke Carl August gave the poet a small house with a garden, today known as Goethe's Garden House. The first constructions and developments appeared in 1778 on the rocky western slope. Paths were subsequently laid, seating installed, monuments, bridges and other park architecture built. Numerous trees and bushes were also planted. The old palace gardens such as the Stern and the Welsche Garten were redesigned and integrated into the park along with the eastern valley slope and the water meadow as far as Oberweimar.
Between 1791 and 1797, the Duke had the Roman House built in classical style. This is the main design featured in the southern part of the park. Important characteristics of the park include the numerous lines of sight linking features such as Goethe’s garden house, the Roman House and the bark house within the park; these also connect them with the surrounding countryside.
The work largely came to an end in 1828 with the death of Carl August, who had been a significant driving force behind the design of the park. Over the following decades, the park was maintained but part of its direct connection with the surrounding landscape disappeared due to building work such as the street Am Horn. Moreover, insufficient care of the trees and shrubs puts its original appearance at risk. Extensive reconstruction, preservation and maintenance work was carried out on the trees, shrubs, paths and architecture only when the park was taken over by the National Research and Memorial Sites of Classical German Literature (NFG) in 1970.
The park on the Ilm river has been one of sites in 'Classical Weimar' UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1998.References:
Derbent is the southernmost city in Russia, occupying the narrow gateway between the Caspian Sea and the Caucasus Mountains connecting the Eurasian steppes to the north and the Iranian Plateau to the south. Derbent claims to be the oldest city in Russia with historical documentation dating to the 8th century BCE. Due to its strategic location, over the course of history, the city changed ownership many times, particularly among the Persian, Arab, Mongol, Timurid, Shirvan and Iranian kingdoms.
Derbent has archaeological structures over 5,000 years old. As a result of this geographic peculiarity, the city developed between two walls, stretching from the mountains to the sea. These fortifications were continuously employed for a millennium and a half, longer than any other extant fortress in the world.
A traditionally and historically Iranian city, the first intensive settlement in the Derbent area dates from the 8th century BC. The site was intermittently controlled by the Persian monarchs, starting from the 6th century BC. Until the 4th century AD, it was part of Caucasian Albania which was a satrap of the Achaemenid Persian Empire. In the 5th century Derbent functioned as a border fortress and the seat of Sassanid Persians. Because of its strategic position on the northern branch of the Silk Route, the fortress was contested by the Khazars in the course of the Khazar-Arab Wars. In 654, Derbent was captured by the Arabs.
The Sassanid fortress does not exist any more, as the famous Derbent fortress as it stands today was built from the 12th century onward. Derbent became a strong military outpost and harbour of the Sassanid empire. During the 5th and 6th centuries, Derbent also became an important center for spreading the Christian faith in the Caucasus.
The site continued to be of great strategic importance until the 19th century. Today the fortifications consist of two parallel defence walls and Naryn-Kala Citadel. The walls are 3.6km long, stretching from the sea up to the mountains. They were built from stone and had 73 defence towers. 9 out of the 14 original gates remain.
In Naryn-Kala Citadel most of the old buildings, including a palace and a church, are now in ruins. It also holds baths and one of the oldest mosques in the former USSR.
In 2003, UNESCO included the old part of Derbent with traditional buildings in the World Heritage List.