This church on the Neumarkt square dominates Dresden and its history is also an icon of the city. It was destroyed by heavy bombing at the end of the Second World War. After the war, it was left in a bombed-out state, as a reminder of this controversial event. It was reconstructed after the reunification of Germany as a symbol of renewal and closure of the past. Rededication was completed in 2005.
Frauenkirche was built as a Lutheran Baroque church between 1726 and 1743. But from 11th century, another church had stood there. It is interesting that the church organ ceremony featured the music of Johann Sebastian Bach.
Another interesting and unusual feature of the church is its twenty six meter plus tall dome, which is called the “stone bell”. It’s a unique example of art and engineering of its time, and has been compared to Michelangelo’s dome of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. The 12 000 ton dome is located at a height of forty meters without internal supports. During the reconstruction of the church in the 20th century the dome was recreated using precision machined blocks of stone on a wooden structure, which was removed after the completion of the dome. The reconstruction took place using only period photographs because no plans have been preserved. The dome is open to the public for a fee – you can climb up to the top of the bell tower.
Dresden’s Frauenkirche church was destroyed by bombing and fire at the end of the war in 1945. Until 1990 the church was left in the form of debris and it was only after the fall of the Iron Curtain, that the church was rebuilt, with most of costs covered by national collection and private donations. Approximately 50% of the material for the reconstruction of the church comes from the original ruins – on the facade of the church, it is good to see old blackened blocks in contrast with new white ones.
Stiftung Frauenkirche Dresden
Official website: www.frauenkirche-dresden.de