775 years Berlin

775 years Berlin

The city celebrates its jubilee

– © G. Steffen

Berlin's 775th birthday is celebrated with exhibitions and festivities.

The city's history-laden anniversary birthday in 2012 goes right back to the Middle Ages. Its birth is taken to be the first documented mention of the Cölln settlement in 1237. The settlement rapidly established itself as a flourishing trading place in the Brandenburg March. There are many celebrations being held around the cradle of Berlin – the Nikolaiviertel (Nikolai quarter), which was rebuilt on the occasion of the 750th anniversary in 1987. The main jubilee celebrations (including the large ceremonial act), taking place on 28th October, are – along with the 800th anniversary of the Nikolai Church and the Day of the Open Memorial – the highlights of the jubilee year.

Archaeological findings along the City Wall

From 25th August to 28th October there will be eight open-air exhibitions at various places to take you through medieval Berlin. The exhibits on display include findings made in January 2010 during excavations for the U-Bahn in front of the Rotes Rathaus (Red Town Hall), two churches, a ruin as well as excavation exhibits along the former city walls.

Special exhibition BERLINmacher 775 Portraits - one Network

The main exhibition on the 775th anniversary of Berlin will be on view in the Ephraim Palais and is dedicated to the great historical characters of the city, who Goethe liked to call a daring breed. A museum show will for the first time display 774 portraits of Berliners who lived, worked and in their different ways provided impulses to the development of the city. The portraits, which are associatively linked to each other and extend over various epochs, include Heinrich Zille, Hildegard Knef and Rudi Dutschke.

800th anniversary of the Berlin Nikolai Church

In 2012 the oldest parish church in Berlin will be 800 years old. The completely renovated Nikolai Church with its late Gothic and romantic influence offers the visitor a stunning view of the church hall right through to the choir. Historical artefacts and modern media provide in-depth insight into the history and architecture. On 28th October the celebrations on the Berlin birthday will be given a fitting finale in the church itself. Following the official ceremonial act, the historical city centre will then grab the limelight with light and sound installations.

Archaeological finds along the city walls

Since the 31st Long Night of Museums on 25th August an almost four kilometre long marking path as well as eight open-air exhibitions will take the visitor through medieval Berlin, which was then a double city divided into the settlements of Berlin and Cölln. In this way, former churches, monasteries, market places and the Jewish Quarter will for the first time show the city walls as an “integral whole”. Also on display will be rare excavation finds, including objects rediscovered near the foundations of the Rotes Rathaus (Red Town Hall). The path will remain accessible up to 28th October 2012.

City of diversity – from Huguenots, Russians, Turks and other Berliners

From 25th August to 28th October, an accessible giant city map laid out on the ground at Schlossplatz will present Berlin as a cultural city of impulses, focusing on ten current and historical themes, which played a key role in Berlin becoming an immigrant society. The map will feature the culinary, religious, scientific, musical and economic diversity of those who came to stay. They include Huguenots, Bohemians, Polish migrant workers, Jews from Eastern Europe, working-class migrants from Southern Europe, war refugees, ethnic Germans from Eastern Europe as well as (in recent years) many artists from all over the world.

The final anniversary celebration takes place on 28th October, 2012. Following the official ceremonial act at the Nikolai Church, the historical city centre will then steal the limelight with light and sound installations by the French Compagnie Carabosse. In the same place, the Titanick street theatre group will perform medieval versions of the “beyond” as well as interpreting the nightmare world of the paintings of Hieronymos Bosch and Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy .

25 Years of the Deutsches Historische Museum

The Deutsches Historisches Museum (German Historical Museum) is celebrating its 25th anniversary in the autumn with a series of events. This conjunction of jubilees is no coincidence, since the museum was presented to the city 25 years ago on the occasion of Berlin’s 750th anniversary celebrations. The public festival taking place in 27th and 28th October will be accompanied by various exhibitions and museum tours.

Info points at Marien Church and Schlossplatz

At the info points you get all informationen, flyers and publications about the city's anniversary, guided tours and exhibitions. All guided tours through the open-air exhibition "City of the Middle Ages" start here. Furthermore, you get general informationen, flyers and tickets for special touristic offers such as the Berlin WelcomeCard and the 3-day museum pass. The info points open daily from 9.30a.m. until 7.30p.m.

Click here to find out more about the history of Berlin.