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2020-08-21 12:12:18

Brandenburg Gate: a symbol of a unified Germany

Brandenburg Gate: a symbol of a unified Germany

More than two hundred years have passed since the official opening of the Brandenburg Gate, and the historical events that took place at their foot will surprise every traveler. Despite the fact that the triumphal arch was built as a symbol of peace, it has long served as a reminder of the split of the country. Today, after all the sad events, the Brandenburg Gate is not only a symbol of a united Germany, but also a wonderful architectural monument that attracts tourists from all over the world!

History of the famous monument

To complete the architectural composition and decoration of the Unter den Linden boulevard, the Prussian king Friedrich Wilhelm II decided to erect a triumphal arch - a symbol of peace, called the "Gate of Peace".

The construction of the Brandenburg Gate lasted from 1789 to 1791. The project was directed by the architect and builder K.G. Langgans, who used the front gate of the Athenian Acropolis as a model. The Brandenburg Gate was decorated with a statue of the ancient Greek goddess of peace Irena, made by the German sculptor I.G. Shadov in 1793.

During the conquest of Berlin by the French army

In 1806, after passing through the triumphal arch after the conquest of Berlin, Napoleon Bonaparte was so impressed by the statue of Irene above the Brandenburg Gate that he ordered the sculptural composition to be dismantled and transferred to Paris.

In 1814, after the capture of the French capital, the quadriga was returned to Berlin. However, the sculptural composition has undergone several changes:

  • The olive branch in the goddess's hand was replaced with a Prussian iron cross
  • The statue was given a new name - Victoria, that is, the goddess of victory.

During the Second World War

The bombardment severely damaged the triumphal arch and completely destroyed the statue of the goddess and the quadriga.

From 1956 to 1958, the restorers had to do a tremendous amount of work to restore the architectural monument. And the sculptural composition decorating the gate was rebuilt from the original casts of I.G. Shadova.

Arc de Triomphe currently

Representing one of the main attractions of the German capital, the Brandenburg Gate looks austere and majestic. A large-scale restoration of the architectural monument was carried out from 2000 to 2002, after which it was also unveiled on the Day of German Unity.

At the southern end of the Arc de Triomphe, there is a travel agency providing travelers with information on theater performances, interesting itineraries and concert schedules. Office hours: 9:30 - 18:00.

Architectural features of the Brandenburg Gate

The Arc de Triomphe was built in the style of German classicism. The architectural monument was created from stone blocks faced with sandstone. The height of the Brandenburg Gate reaches 26 m, and the width is 65.5 m. The base of the triumphal arch is made up of 12 columns arranged in 2 rows and creating 5 aisles intended for residents and guests of the city. Foreign ambassadors, members of royal families and their guests passed through the central opening, so it is slightly wider than the rest. Ordinary Berliners used only side aisles.

Until 1867, buildings necessary for military purposes were placed on both sides of the Brandenburg Gate, which were later replaced by through porticos.

Points of interest near the Arc de Triomphe

  • At the end of the picturesque boulevard Unter den Linden, leading to the Brandenburg Gate, there is a beautiful Parisian Square, which is the "front" part of Berlin. There are banking buildings, embassies of foreign countries and the magnificent Adlon Kempinski hotel, built in the classicism style
  • You should pay attention to the square of 18 March, located on the west side of the Brandenburg Gate, because it was here that the Berlin Wall passed
  • After enjoying the beautiful architectural landscape, you can relax in the beautiful green Tiergarten park, located in the immediate vicinity of the architectural monument.

Object type: monument.

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Egor Eremeev
Current material has been prepared by Egor Eremeev
Education: Westminster University (Business & Management), London.
Egor studied and lived in the UK for 8 years and graduated from the university of Westminster. He is currently the co-founder and the director of business development at Smapse Education and personally visits foreign schools and universities, interviews students studying in those institutions.
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