Imperial Pfalz of Gelnhausen
The splendour of medieval history fell on the imperial pfalz of Gelnhausen when the Staufen ruled in the 12th century. Of the few surviving examples of the palace architecture of this dynasty in Germany, the ruins of the Romanesque moated castle stand out as the most artistically valuable.
At a glance
12/17, 11:00–12:00 – Lebendiges Museum
It takes a little imagination to picture the imperial pfalz of Gelnhausen today, amidst its remains, as a centre of power of the then vast Holy Roman Empire. Under the rule of Emperors Frederick I Barbarossa (c. 1122-1190) and Henry VI (1156-1197), it stretched from the North and Baltic Seas to the shores of the Mediterranean. With the two most important representatives of the Staufian dynasty, their economic and cultural promotion, Gelnhausen experienced a powerful upswing. In the 12th century, kings (usually crowned emperors) and their court moved from one settlement to the next due to the lack of permanent residences. As such a station, Barbarossa (Italian: Redbeard) had a moated castle founded on an island in the Kinzig around 1169/70, which was conveniently located on the Via Regia trade route, and combined three settlements (including “Geilenhusen”) that had been raised to a town.
In the vicinity
Ortenberg - Konradsdorf
Seligenstadt AbbeyMuseum on siteMeetings & celebrations possibleGastronomy on site
Steinau an der Straße
Steinau PalaceMuseum on siteGuided toursMeetings & celebrations possible
Hanau-Wilhelmsbad State ParkMuseum on siteGuided toursMeetings & celebrations possibleGastronomy on site