The Great Tower Neuwerk is the most significant building of the Neuwerk island, belonging to Hamburg. This former beacon, watchtower and lighthouse is also the oldest building in Hamburg and oldest secular building on the German coast.
The construction was started in 1300. It was completed after ten years in 1310. The style matches the common norman tower type of the time. Contrary to some literature, the tower was built in this form from the beginning. The fire in the 1360s destroyed most of the wooden elements and it had to undergo major reconstruction.
The original roof was made of lead, and was replaced by copper in 1474. This was again replaced in 1558 by a tiled roof and by a new copper roof following that. The copper was then used for military purposes in 1916 reconstructed later.
The original purpose was to host troops to defend the ships entering and leaving the Elbe from sea and beach pirates. The tower was also refuge for the farmers on the island during storm surges and survivors of shipwrecks over the centuries.References:
Trullhalsar is a very well-preserved and restored burial field dating back to the Roman Iron Ages (0-400 AD) and Vendel period (550-800 AD). There are over 340 different kind of graves like round stones (called judgement rings), ship settings, tumuli and a viking-age picture stone (700 AD).
There are 291 graves of this type within the Trullhalsar burial ground, which occurs there in different sizes from two to eight metres in diameter and heights between 20 and 40 centimetres. Some of them still have a rounded stone in the centre as a so-called grave ball, a special feature of Scandinavian graves from the late Iron and Viking Age.
In addition, there is a ship setting, 26 stone circles and 31 menhirs within the burial ground, which measures about 200 x 150 metres. The stone circles, also called judge's rings, have diameters between four and 15 metres. They consist partly of lying boulders and partly of vertically placed stones. About half of them have a central stone in the centre of the circle.
From 1915 to 1916, many of the graves were archaeologically examined and both graves of men and women were found. The women's graves in particular suggest that the deceased were very wealthy during their lifetime. Jewellery and weapons or food were found, and in some graves even bones of lynxes and bears. Since these animals have never been found in the wild on Gotland, it is assumed that the deceased were given the skins of these animals in their graves.