"History and Overview" Zwinger Tip by nicolaitan
Zwinger, Dresden: 97 reviews and 247 photos
The Zwinger Complex is the centerpiece of Dresden's Old City, no doubt bringing joy to the heart of August the Strong ( which reposes nearby - more below ). The name derives from the original location between two defensive walls of medieval Dresden. The original plan was for 6 pavillions connected by galleries open to the Elbe River. After construction of the Semper Opera, the open end was closed by additional galleries designed by Semper himself creating a closed rectangular palace with a large central area of lawns, wide promenade-like pathways, and fountains. Originally used for court functions and celebrations as well as exhibitions, the Zwinger today houses several remarkable museums as well as being a classic Baroque architectural structure.
August the Strong's visit to France in 1688 coincided with the opening of Louis XIV's magnificent Versailles palace. Having just married into the royal Polish family and becoming king of Poland as well as elector of Saxony, August would have nothing less for himself. The Zwinger was designed by Matthaus Poppelman, the court architect, in the early 18th Century and constructed in stages between 1711 and 1728 with sculptures by Permoser. Poppelman was Westphalian but had studied architecture in Prague and Vienna at August's behest, prior to creating this palace. It has never served as a residence and was open to the public from the beginning. The first formal event in 1719 was the wedding of August's son to a Hapsburg princess. The Renaissance style gallery known as the Semperbau closing the rectangle was added beginning in 1847.
The Zwinger was basically destroyed in April 1945 by allied bombing but the art and other treasures had previously been removed to safety. The Communist rulers wanted to bulldoze the whole area but the people of Dresden voted to restore these buildings to their original glory - they deserve undying gratitude.
The pages to follow will detail the famed pavillions and the several museums of the Zwinger.
Address: Theaterplatz, 01067 Dresden
Phone: 0351 - 438370312
More Things to Do in Dresden (19)
More Reviews (5)
nicolaitan's Related Pages
Have you been to Dresden?Share Your Travels