The Fuggerhäuser (Fugger houses) is a complex of houses built for the Fugger family of businessmen. From 1512 to 1515 Jakob Fugger the Younger built two linked houses on the Via Claudia (now Maximilianstraße) near the wine market, one as a town-house and the other as a warehouse. He designed them himself, based on notes he had taken on his travels in Italy. The secular building was the first Renaissance style building constructed north of the Alps. He bought other neighbouring houses from 1517 onwards and integrated them into the complex.
The outer facade, one of the longest on Maximilianstraße, showed the Fugger family riches, since there was a tax paid according to the length of a house's facade. Inside the complex Jakob created four courtyards with arcades, mosaics, tuscan marble and water basins. The Damenhof, with its Tuscan columns supporting arcades and painted arches, was designed as a family garden for female members of the family. The Zofenhof opens off the Damenhof, whilst the third and fourth courtyard (the Serenadenhof and Reiterhof) about each other at the back of the building. Larger teams of horses could enter the complex through a high and wide gate - the Adlertor (Eagle Gate) - and leave through another on the Reiterhof.
After being destroyed in the Second World War, the complex was rebuilt in 1951 by Carl Fürst Fugger-Babenhausen. The front facade used to feature a fresco by Hans Burgkmair, which was destroyed in the Second World War and replaced by a new livery. Plaques there recall the Fugger business empire and the events of 1518, when Martin Luther was interrogated by Thomas Cajetan in the Fuggerhäuser. In the middle of the facade is the Adlertor, which indicates that the Fuggerhäuser was an imperial residence - this gate now leads to the headquarters of the Fürst Fugger Privatbank.
The building is closed to the public, other than three of the inner courtyards and a three-naved hall on the ground floor of the Adlertor, which houses a bookshop at #37 Maximillianstrasse, visitors to the shop can look onto the Damenhof. On the north side of the Damenhof and Serenadenhof is the white bay window into the quarters occupied by Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor. A Fugger coat of arms features on the back facade of the Fuggerhäuser on Zeugplatz. The Fugger concert hall was probably in this area - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart played a concert in that hall in 1777.References:
The Broch of Gurness is an Iron Age broch village. Settlement here began sometime between 500 and 200 BC. At the centre of the settlement is a stone tower or broch, which once probably reached a height of around 10 metres. Its interior is divided into sections by upright slabs. The tower features two skins of drystone walls, with stone-floored galleries in between. These are accessed by steps. Stone ledges suggest that there was once an upper storey with a timber floor. The roof would have been thatched, surrounded by a wall walk linked by stairs to the ground floor. The broch features two hearths and a subterranean stone cistern with steps leading down into it. It is thought to have some religious significance, relating to an Iron Age cult of the underground.
The remains of the central tower are up to 3.6 metres high, and the stone walls are up to 4.1 metres thick. The tower was likely inhabited by the principal family or clan of the area but also served as a last resort for the village in case of an attack.
The broch continued to be inhabited while it began to collapse and the original structures were altered. The cistern was filled in and the interior was repartitioned. The ruin visible today reflects this secondary phase of the broch's use.
The site is surrounded by three ditches cut out of the rock with stone ramparts, encircling an area of around 45 metres diameter. The remains of numerous small stone dwellings with small yards and sheds can be found between the inner ditch and the tower. These were built after the tower, but were a part of the settlement's initial conception. A 'main street' connects the outer entrance to the broch. The settlement is the best-preserved of all broch villages.
Pieces of a Roman amphora dating to before 60 AD were found here, lending weight to the record that a 'King of Orkney' submitted to Emperor Claudius at Colchester in 43 AD.
At some point after 100 AD the broch was abandoned and the ditches filled in. It is thought that settlement at the broch continued into the 5th century AD, the period known as Pictish times. By that time the broch was not used anymore and some of its stones were reused to build smaller dwellings on top of the earlier buildings. Until about the 8th century, the site was just a single farmstead.
In the 9th century, a Norse woman was buried at the site in a stone-lined grave with two bronze brooches and a sickle and knife made from iron. Other finds suggest that Norse men were buried here too.