Belvedere Palace, Weimar


A Classic Amongst World Heritage Sites

(Encore Edition)

A decade after its reign as "European Capital of Cultural" in 1999,  Weimar, a town of classics is still a highly credible icon for that prestigious title.  It may have been the smallest city ever to be awarded this distinction, but this tranquil town on the river Ilm enjoys a long heritage of contributions to the history and cultural developments in Europe over the centuries.

Evidence of this influence on the history of European culture and politics of the past centuries abounds in Weimar.  Visitors who visit the town are captivated by its pristine personality as they stroll  upon streets that echo the footsteps of some of the  greatest figures in European history.  A beautifully renovated town centre, as well as modern tourism infrastructure amply fulfills your expectations.

The oeuvre of Weimar has many themes: cultural highlights such as the Arts Festival, which is organized around Goethe’s birthday in autumn's eve, provide the town with a festival atmosphere.  Dance theatre, drama, concerts and readings are for the people of Weimar as much as the visitor. The historic Onion Market on the second weekend in October is devoted to more rustic entertainment – in the year 2009 it will take place for the 356th time.

The Classical Weimar Ensemble . . .

The World Heritage Committee designated the ensemble of buildings from the "Classical Weimar" period as being a UNESCO World Heritage Site at its 24th session in Kyoto, Japan in 1998. The Weimar Classic Age coincided with the peak of German national literature (c. 1800). The Weimar Classic period ran from 1775-1832, which was when Goethe lived and worked in this small town. Apart from Johann Wolfgang Goethe also Friedrich Schiller, Christoph Martin Wieland and Johann Gottfried Herder contributed to the Weimar Classic period. It could only developed in an intellectual cultural atmosphere created by Duchess Anna Amalia and further encouraged by Duke Carl August. Important European ideas of literary criticism, art theory, aesthetics and teaching evolved in Weimar in that time.

The World Heritage Site of Classical Weimar Includes . . .

Goethe National Museum   Goethe's Home at the Frauenplan,

The permanent exhibition "Repeated Reflection. Weimar Classics 1759-1832" in the Museum Complex on the Frauenplan, casts light on Classic Weimar and its unique phenomena.


Schiller House Schiller's Home,

Friedrich Schiller spent the last three years of his life in this townhouse on the former Weimar Esplanade. Still containing part of the original furnishings, it reflects the style prevalent in Schiller’s day.


The Widow Palace

  After a fire in the town palace, the Palace was turned into the dowager residence of Duchess Anna Amalia. The two-winged building is an important document of noble interior design in Weimar.  Luminaries of Classical Weimar used to meet up in the ‘Round Table Room’ to talk and exchange opinions, while the ‘Friday Society’ set up by Goethe also met for a while at Wittumspalais. Following the death of the Duchess, the building was no longer permanently inhabited, and was instead used as a guest-house and meeting place by the Amalia Masonic Lodge.

The Town Church St. Peter and Paul



Duchess Anna Amalia Library the Duchess Anna Amalia Library,

Anna Amalia had the ‘Green Palace’ turned into a library comprising a unique combination of books, an art collection and architecture. The Rococo Hall is especially famous. The library suffered a devastating fire in September 2004 and  reopened in October 2007 in time to mark the 200th anniversary of Anna Amalia’s death.


Goethe's Summer House 

Bought for Goethe by the Duke, the poet lived here until moving to the house on Frauenplan. A place of refuge for Goethe, after his death it became a shrine for his admirers.



Weimar Celebrates the 90th Anniversary of Bauhaus . . .

"BAUHAUS" is the common term for the Staatliches Bauhaus, an art and architecture school in Germany that operated from 1919 to 1933, and for its approach to design that it publicized and taught. Bauhaus style became one of the most influential currents in Modernist architecture, and one of the most important currents of the New Objectivity. The Bauhaus Art School had a profound influence upon subsequent developments in art, architecture, graphic design, interior design, industrial design and typography.

The Bauhaus Art School existed in three German cities (Weimar from 1919 to 1925, Dessau from 1925 to 1932, Berlin from 1932 to 1933), under three different architect-directors. Today – the Bauhaus sites in Weimar and Dessau are part of the UNESCO World Heritage. This design revolution that began 90 years ago was founded by Walter Gropius in 1919.

In 2009 all eyes will be on Weimar, the Weimarer Land region, Jena and Erfurt as the focal points during the Bauhaus jubilee. In Thuringia the birth of the Avant-Garde school whose global influence continues to this day will be remembered with impressive exhibitions and outstanding events.

Weimar had long been an intellectual and cultural centre in Germany, the source of new ideas in literature, music and the theatre since the age of classicism. Henry van de Velde, the architect and a guiding intellectual force in art nouveau, had created the perfect environment in which the Bauhaus could flourish with his Grand Ducal School of Arts and Crafts.

His buildings like the Villa Duerkheim or the former school of Arts and Crafts can still be seen in Weimar. Based in Weimar until 1925, the Bauhaus was the most modern art school of its day. It was to revolutionize architecture and design all over the world through teamwork, workshop principles and openness to the latest international influences.

Gropius assembled virtually the whole of the European Avant-garde in Weimar: Lyonel Feininger, Wassily Kandinsky, Paul Klee, Gerhard Marcks, Johannes Itten, Oskar Schlemmer and László Moholy-Nagy were appointed to teach at the new school of design. The most famous example of Bauhaus architecture in Weimar is Am Horn House, which was built as a model house for the first architecture exhibition of 1923.

90 years of the Bauhaus is a perfect opportunity to present – for the first time on such a large scale – the background, the historical and intellectual roots and the origins of the Bauhaus philosophy in a comprehensive and highly exclusive series of exhibitions and events. "The Bauhaus – classic" exhibition Weimar Classics Foundation – in prominent locations in Weimar including the Bauhaus Museum, the New Museum Weimar, the Goethe National Museum, the Schiller Museum, Am Horn House and Bauhaus University Weimar March 28th to July 5th,  2009.

Bauhaus Museum

  The world-famous Bauhaus School of Architecture and Applied Arts was originally founded in Weimar. The museum contains about 500 exhibits made by teachers and students of this avant-garde college.

Other Historical Points of Interest in Weimar . . .

Hohe Pappeln House

Henry van de Velde, a Belgian architect and designer who was art adviser to the Grand Duchy, devised and built this country house for his family once it had grown to seven people.

Weimar Town Museum

  Weimar Town Museum in Bertuch House shows the history of Weimar in the time from 1919. The rooms on the ground floor are occasionally open for the various exhibitions and public lectures organized by the museum’s Association of Friends and Patrons.