Essential Architecture-  Hanseatic city of Lübeck

Holstentor, Lübeck


Hinrich Helmsted


Lübeck, Schleswig-Holstein, northern Germany




Hanseatic Brick Gothic


Brick It consists of two round towers at the north and the south side with an arched entranceway between them. The building is four stories high.


Town wall gate
The Holstentor ("Holsten Gate") is a late Brick Gothic city gate, the only still existing one beside the Burgtor and part of the medieval fortifications of Lübeck in Germany. Today it is considered a major landmark of Lübeck. Together with the Altstadt of Lübeck it is an UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987.

The main gate was erected by the city master builder Hinrich Helmsted between 1464 and 1478. A front gate of the Holstentor, supposed to improve the defence of the city's west side, was built in 1585. It was later demolished. Because the Holstentor was sinking into the ground, it was in danger of collapse. In 1863 the lowest arrow slits were found 50 cm under the ground and the tendency of the whole gate was risky. Until 1871 one tried to save it, but it still caved in. In 1933/34 the security precautions were successful, but the architecture of the gate was altered thereby. In 2005/2006 the gate again was renovated.

Since 1950 the Holstentor is a museum about city history. In 2002 it was modernized. The torture chamber that was shown there, although in history there wasn't any torture chamber in the Holstentor, was removed and the concept of the museum was reformed. Today the management of the museum is done by the Kulturstiftung Hansestadt Lübeck.

HolstentorThe Holstentor appears on the 2006 version of the special edition German 2 euro coin and former 50 DM banknote.

The gate also appeared as a landmark in the Maxis PC game Simcity 3000.

The old Burgtor