Wednesday, October 16, 2019

The Hohenzollern

In my history blogs, I frequently referred to the Habsburgs as the ever ruling German imperial family from 1273 to 1918. I covered the wars fought, their personal history, or bemoaned the last Habsburg.

Only lately, during my recent visits to Berlin, the other German ruling family, the Hohenzollern, came into focus. I walked through their city, Berlin, and visited their museums.

Some refer to the Hohenzollern as the Prussian dynasty, although initially, they originated from Württemberg.

Unter den Linden, Fredrick, the phantom horseman, under a gray Berlin sky.
I don’t intend to dig deeply into Prussian history, but I will mention King Frederick the Great. Some historians regard him as the enlightened prince while I call him a warmonger.

Anton von Werner: Inauguration of the Reichstag by Wilhelm II in the White Hall
of the Berlin City Palace in June 1888 (©DHM)
The latter quality certainly is true for Emperor William II. On the painting by Anton Werner seen at the Deutsches Historisches Museum note the 29-year-old uniform loving greenhorn silly looking in his red outfit while 73-old Bismarck slightly bending than standing is suffering in his posture as Red Baron.

Heavy tourist boat traffic on the Spree River near the Berliner Dom.
Being back in Berlin for a family affair - another wedding - I concentrated in my "free" time on the Berlin Cathedral in memory of William I, the “founder” of the 2nd German Reich in 1871.

Have a glimpse of the bride and groom taking their seats for the ceremony not at the Dom but at Herz Jesu Kirche. Here we listened to a singer with the groom's brother playing the guitar.

Let the little children come to me, and do not keep them away ...
A group of children was partly helping with the ceremony by holding stoup and rings. They nearly stole the show from the bridal couple.

At the Dom, the super wide-angle lens of my iPhone was useful.
The Berliner Dom was built in the 1880s as a Protestant counterbalance to the Catholic Cologne Cathedral (Kölner Dom).

Erntedankfest inside the Dom: Thanksgiving for the harvest the German way.
Sarcophagus of the Great Elector Frederick William.
In the window, the electoral hat.
And again, as an answer to the Vienna Imperial Crypt of the Habsburg, the Hohenzollern built their spacious imperial crypt below the Berliner Dom.

Sarcophagus of Luise Henriette, first wife of the Great Elector.
Black and white, the Prussian colors are shown in the window.
Animated Queen Elisabeth Christine, wife of Frederick the Great and Frederick's bravest soldier.
Her sarcophagus was destroyed in an air raid.

When I stepped out of the Dom, I admired the restored facade of the Berliner Stadtschloss, the future Humboldt Forum. I presented other views in a previous blog.

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