Eschenheimer Turm: A Mediaeval Tower in The Middle of Frankfurt

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Standing right in the middle of downtown Frankfurt, surrounded by modern high-rises, is an early 15th century tower called Eschenheimer Turm. The tower was once part of a massive fortification that consisted of nearly sixty towers and walls that encircled the city. Most were demolished between 1806 and 1812 when the old city walls were torn down. Eschenheimer Turm, along with two other towers, were saved from demolition at the request of French ambassador Count d'Hédouville. Today the tower is one of Frankfurt's most famous landmarks.

The Roman Emperor Louis IV began constructing the city walls in order to protect the “new town”, Frankfurter Neustadt, from the diverse dangers that threatened the city at that time. Fortification of Neustadt began during the middle of the 14th century and took over one hundred years to complete. The cornerstone for the original gate tower was laid on 11 October 1349. This was replaced by the Eschenheimer Turm built between 1426 and 1428.

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The Eschenheimer Turm is 47 meters high and has eight levels and two attics. Starting from a square base, the round tower rises and culminates in a steep spire appointed with four, small, equally proportioned side turrets and a projecting battlement. Inside the tower are living quarters for the tower guard, which remained inhabited until 1956.

The tower, still largely intact in its original configuration, is now set in a very urban environment — a large, busy plaza, called Eschenheimer Tor. The ground floor has been repurposed as a bar and restaurant. The fireplace room of the tower guard is used by the hospitality operations. Quarterly meetings of the association Freunde Frankfurts (the Friends of Frankfurt) continue to be held in the fireplace room, as is reported in the history of the tower.

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The interior of the restaurant inside Eschenheimer Turm. Photo credit

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The interior of the restaurant inside Eschenheimer Turm. Photo credit

Sources: Wikipedia

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