Germany, Hamburg, the view over the Binnenalster lake
Hamburg's official name is the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg
(Freie und Hansestadt Hamburg
). It makes reference to Hamburg's history as a member of the medieval Hanseatic League, as a free imperial city of the Holy Roman Empire, and also to the fact that Hamburg is a city-state and one of the sixteen Federal States of Germany.
The city takes its name from the first permanent building on the site, a castle ordered to be built by Emperor Charlemagne in 808 AD. The castle was built on rocky ground in a marsh between the river Alster and the river Elbe as a defence against Slavic incursion. The castle was named Hammaburg.
In 834, Hamburg was designated the seat of a Roman Catholic bishopric, whose first bishop, Ansgar, became known as the Apostle of the North. Two years later, Hamburg was united with Bremen as the bishopric of Hamburg-Bremen. The charter in 1189 by Frederick I Barbarossa granted Hamburg the status of an Imperial Free City and tax-free access up the Lower Elbe into the North Sea. This charter, along with Hamburg's proximity to the main trade routes of the North Sea and Baltic Sea, quickly made it a major port in Northern Europe. Its trade alliance with Lübeck in 1241 marks the origin and core of the powerful Hanseatic League of trading cities. On November 8, 1266 a contract between Henry III and Hamburg's traders allowed them to establish a hanse in London. This was the first time in history the word hanse was mentioned for the trading guild Hanseatic League.
Hamburg was briefly annexed by Napoleon I to the First French Empire (181014). Russian forces under General Bennigsen finally freed the city in 1814. In 1860, the state of Hamburg established a republican constitution. Hamburg became a city-state in the North German Confederation (186671), the German Empire (18711918) and during the period of the Weimar Republic (191933).
During World War II Hamburg suffered a series of air raids, which killed ~50,000 civilians and devastated much of the inhabited city as well as harbour areas.
In this panorama one can see the illuminated building of the Town Hall (in the center). To the left of it there is a dark spire of the former St. Nicholas church. During one of the air raids the church was destroyed but the tower remained. In 1951, all of the ruins except the tower were cleared and the tower was transformed into the memorial against war.
On a trip with
- thanks for meeting
Canon40D, 70-300, ISO 160, F/11, 2 sec, pano from 8 shots