Thursday, November 18, 2010

Holiday in Beautiful Erfurt: heart of Thuringia

Erfurt is one of the most beautiful and historic cities that I have ever visited. It was almost my second home!  I am surprised that very few people are familiar with the rich history of this city.  Whenever I mention it to friends, they typically draw a blank, not having the faintest idea of its location in Germany.  "Furt --what?  Frankfurt, did you say?"  Erfurt is currently among the many cities in the running to be named the next UNESCO world heritage site. Here are several reasons why I feel this international recognition is long over-due: 

~ Original gate of the medieval university ~
where the Reformer Martin Luther went to school!

~ perfectly preserved medieval town ~

~ The Mikwe ~
(the Ritual Bath belonging to a once thriving medieval Jewish community;
a significant restoration project is on-going)

~ Half-timber houses throughout the city ~
(evoking the medieval past)

~ Old Synagogue ~
(which dates back to the Middle Ages ~ extraordinary testimony of
the Jewish community that thrived in medieval Erfurt) 

~ Parable of the Ten Virgins ~
(Detail on the portal of the "Dom" or Gothic Cathedral ~
evoking the apocalyptic mentality & urban piety of late medieval Erfurt)

~ Fish Market ~
Remarkably well-preserved artwork on buildings in this area 

~ Merchant's Bridge ~
(which dates back to the Middle Ages - Erfurt made its money from woad production)

~ Stunning Renaissance Architecture! ~

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