Koblenz

Koblenz

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Koblenz is a German
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

 city situated on both banks of the Rhine at its confluence with the Moselle, where the Deutsches Eck
Deutsches Eck
Deutsches Eck is the name of a headland in Koblenz where the Moselle joins the Rhine. In 1897, nine years after the death of the German Emperor William I, the former emperor was honoured with a giant equestrian statue bearing an inscription quoting a German poem: "Nimmer wird das Reich zerstöret,...

(German Corner) and its monument
Monument
A monument is a type of structure either explicitly created to commemorate a person or important event or which has become important to a social group as a part of their remembrance of historic times or cultural heritage, or simply as an example of historic architecture...

 (Emperor William I
William I, German Emperor
William I, also known as Wilhelm I , of the House of Hohenzollern was the King of Prussia and the first German Emperor .Under the leadership of William and his Chancellor Otto von Bismarck, Prussia achieved the unification of Germany and the...

 on horseback) are situated.

As Koblenz was one of the military posts established by Drusus
Nero Claudius Drusus
Nero Claudius Drusus Germanicus , born Decimus Claudius Drusus also called Drusus, Drusus I, Nero Drusus, or Drusus the Elder was a Roman politician and military commander. He was a fully patrician Claudian on his father's side but his maternal grandmother was from a plebeian family...

 about 8 BC, the town celebrated its 2000th anniversary in 1992.

The name Koblenz originates from Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 (ad) confluentes, confluence
Confluence (geography)
In geography, a confluence is the meeting of two or more bodies of water. It usually refers to the point where two streams flow together, merging into a single stream...

 or "(at the) merging of river
River
A river is a natural watercourse, usually freshwater, flowing towards an ocean, a lake, a sea, or another river. In a few cases, a river simply flows into the ground or dries up completely before reaching another body of water. Small rivers may also be called by several other names, including...

s". Subsequently it was Covelenz and Cobelenz. In the local dialect the name is Kowelenz.

After Mainz
Mainz
Mainz under the Holy Roman Empire, and previously was a Roman fort city which commanded the west bank of the Rhine and formed part of the northernmost frontier of the Roman Empire...

 and Ludwigshafen am Rhein
Ludwigshafen am Rhein
Ludwigshafen am Rhein is a city in Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany. Ludwigshafen is located on the Rhine opposite Mannheim. Together with Mannheim, Heidelberg and the surrounding region, it forms the Rhine Neckar Area....

, it is the third largest city in Rhineland-Palatinate
Rhineland-Palatinate
Rhineland-Palatinate is one of the 16 states of the Federal Republic of Germany. It has an area of and about four million inhabitants. The capital is Mainz. English speakers also commonly refer to the state by its German name, Rheinland-Pfalz ....

, with a population of c. 106,000 (2006). Koblenz lies in the Rhineland
Rhineland
Historically, the Rhinelands refers to a loosely-defined region embracing the land on either bank of the River Rhine in central Europe....

, 92 kilometres (57.2 mi) southeast of Cologne
Cologne
Cologne is Germany's fourth-largest city , and is the largest city both in the Germany Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia and within the Rhine-Ruhr Metropolitan Area, one of the major European metropolitan areas with more than ten million inhabitants.Cologne is located on both sides of the...

 by rail.

Ancient era


Around 1000 BC, early fortifications were erected on the Festung Ehrenbreitstein
Festung Ehrenbreitstein
Ehrenbreitstein Fortress is a fortress on the mountain of the same name on the east bank of the Rhine opposite the town of Koblenz in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate....

 hill on the opposite side of the Moselle. In 55 BC, Roman troops commanded by Julius Caesar
Julius Caesar
Gaius Julius Caesar was a Roman general and statesman and a distinguished writer of Latin prose. He played a critical role in the gradual transformation of the Roman Republic into the Roman Empire....

 reached the Rhine and built a bridge
Caesar's Rhine bridges
Caesar's Bridge across the Rhine, the first two bridges to cross the Rhine River, were built by Julius Caesar and his legionaries during the Gallic War in 55 BC and 53 BC, respectively...

 between Koblenz and Andernach
Andernach
Andernach is a town in the district of Mayen-Koblenz, in Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany, of currently about 30,000 inhabitants. It is situated towards the end of the Neuwied basin on the left bank of the Rhine between the former tiny fishing village of Fornich in the north and the mouth of the...

. About 9 BC, the "Castellum apud Confluentes", was one of the military posts established by Drusus
Nero Claudius Drusus
Nero Claudius Drusus Germanicus , born Decimus Claudius Drusus also called Drusus, Drusus I, Nero Drusus, or Drusus the Elder was a Roman politician and military commander. He was a fully patrician Claudian on his father's side but his maternal grandmother was from a plebeian family...

.

Remains of a large bridge built in 49 AD by the Romans are still visible. The Romans built two castles as protection for the bridge, one in 9 AD and another in the 2nd century, the latter being destroyed by the Franks
Franks
The Franks were a confederation of Germanic tribes first attested in the third century AD as living north and east of the Lower Rhine River. From the third to fifth centuries some Franks raided Roman territory while other Franks joined the Roman troops in Gaul. Only the Salian Franks formed a...

 in 259. North of Koblenz was a temple of Mercury and Rosmerta (a Gallo-Roman deity), which remained in use up to the 5th century.



Middle Ages


With the fall of the Western Roman Empire
Western Roman Empire
The Western Roman Empire was the western half of the Roman Empire after its division by Diocletian in 285; the other half of the Roman Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire, commonly referred to today as the Byzantine Empire....

, the city was conquered by the Franks and became a royal seat. After the division of Charlemagne
Charlemagne
Charlemagne was King of the Franks from 768 and Emperor of the Romans from 800 to his death in 814. He expanded the Frankish kingdom into an empire that incorporated much of Western and Central Europe. During his reign, he conquered Italy and was crowned by Pope Leo III on 25 December 800...

's empire, it was included in the lands of his son Louis the Pious
Louis the Pious
Louis the Pious , also called the Fair, and the Debonaire, was the King of Aquitaine from 781. He was also King of the Franks and co-Emperor with his father, Charlemagne, from 813...

 (814). In 837, it was assigned to Charles the Bald
Charles the Bald
Charles the Bald , Holy Roman Emperor and King of West Francia , was the youngest son of the Emperor Louis the Pious by his second wife Judith.-Struggle against his brothers:He was born on 13 June 823 in Frankfurt, when his elder...

, and a few years later it was here that Carolingian heirs discussed what was to become the Treaty of Verdun
Treaty of Verdun
The Treaty of Verdun was a treaty between the three surviving sons of Louis the Pious, the son and successor of Charlemagne, which divided the Carolingian Empire into three kingdoms...

 (843), by which the city became part of Lotharingia
Lotharingia
Lotharingia was a region in northwest Europe, comprising the Low Countries, the western Rhineland, the lands today on the border between France and Germany, and what is now western Switzerland. It was born of the tripartite division in 855, of the kingdom of Middle Francia, itself formed of the...

 under Lothair I
Lothair I
Lothair I or Lothar I was the Emperor of the Romans , co-ruling with his father until 840, and the King of Bavaria , Italy and Middle Francia...

. In 860 and 922, Koblenz was the scene of ecclesiastical synods. At the first synod, held in the Liebfrauenkirche, the reconciliation of Louis the German
Louis the German
Louis the German , also known as Louis II or Louis the Bavarian, was a grandson of Charlemagne and the third son of the succeeding Frankish Emperor Louis the Pious and his first wife, Ermengarde of Hesbaye.He received the appellation 'Germanicus' shortly after his death in recognition of the fact...

 with his half-brother Charles the Bald took place. The town was sacked and destroyed by the Normans
Normans
The Normans were the people who gave their name to Normandy, a region in northern France. They were descended from Norse Viking conquerors of the territory and the native population of Frankish and Gallo-Roman stock...

 in 882. In 925, it became part of the eastern German Kingdom, later the Holy Roman Empire
Holy Roman Empire
The Holy Roman Empire was a realm that existed from 962 to 1806 in Central Europe.It was ruled by the Holy Roman Emperor. Its character changed during the Middle Ages and the Early Modern period, when the power of the emperor gradually weakened in favour of the princes...

.
In 1018, the city was given by the emperor Henry II
Henry II, Holy Roman Emperor
Henry II , also referred to as Saint Henry, Obl.S.B., was the fifth and last Holy Roman Emperor of the Ottonian dynasty, from his coronation in Rome in 1014 until his death a decade later. He was crowned King of the Germans in 1002 and King of Italy in 1004...

 to the archbishop
Archbishop
An archbishop is a bishop of higher rank, but not of higher sacramental order above that of the three orders of deacon, priest , and bishop...

 and prince elector of Trier after receiving a charter. It remained in the possession of his successors until the end of the 18th century, having been their main residence since the 17th century. Emperor Conrad II
Conrad II, Holy Roman Emperor
Conrad II was Holy Roman Emperor from 1027 until his death.The son of a mid-level nobleman in Franconia, Count Henry of Speyer and Adelaide of Alsace, he inherited the titles of count of Speyer and of Worms as an infant when Henry died at age twenty...

 was elected here in 1138. In 1198, the battle between Philip of Swabia
Philip of Swabia
Philip of Swabia was king of Germany and duke of Swabia, the rival of the emperor Otto IV.-Biography:Philip was the fifth and youngest son of Emperor Frederick I and Beatrice I, Countess of Burgundy, daughter of Renaud III, count of Burgundy, and brother of the emperor Henry VI...

 and Otto IV
Otto IV, Holy Roman Emperor
Otto IV of Brunswick was one of two rival kings of the Holy Roman Empire from 1198 on, sole king from 1208 on, and emperor from 1209 on. The only king of the Welf dynasty, he incurred the wrath of Pope Innocent III and was excommunicated in 1215.-Early life:Otto was the third son of Henry the...

 took place nearby. In 1216, prince-bishop Theoderich von Wied donated part of the lands of the basilica and the hospital to the Teutonic Knights
Teutonic Knights
The Order of Brothers of the German House of Saint Mary in Jerusalem , commonly the Teutonic Order , is a German medieval military order, in modern times a purely religious Catholic order...

, which later became the Deutsches Eck.

In 1249-1254, Koblenz was given new walls by Archbishop Arnold II of Isenburg; and it was partly to overawe the turbulent townsmen that successive archbishops built and strengthened the fortress of Ehrenbreitstein that still dominates the city.

Modern era


The city was a member of the league of the Rhenish cities which rose in the 13th century. The Teutonic Knights
Teutonic Knights
The Order of Brothers of the German House of Saint Mary in Jerusalem , commonly the Teutonic Order , is a German medieval military order, in modern times a purely religious Catholic order...

 founded the Bailiwick of Koblenz in or around 1231. Koblenz attained great prosperity and it continued to advance until the disaster of the Thirty Years' War
Thirty Years' War
The Thirty Years' War was fought primarily in what is now Germany, and at various points involved most countries in Europe. It was one of the most destructive conflicts in European history....

 brought about a rapid decline. After Philip Christopher, elector of Trier, surrendered Ehrenbreitstein to the French, the town received an imperial garrison in 1632. However, this force was soon expelled by the Swedes, who in their turn handed the city over again to the French. Imperial forces finally succeeded in retaking it by storm in 1636.

In 1688, Koblenz was besieged by the French under Marshal de Boufflers, but they only succeeded in bombing the Old City (Altstadt) into ruins, destroying among other buildings the Old Merchants' Hall (Kaufhaus), which was restored in its present form in 1725. The city was the residence of the archbishop-electors of Trier
Archbishopric of Trier
The Archbishopric of Trier was a Roman Catholic diocese in Germany, that existed from Carolingian times until the end of the Holy Roman Empire. Its suffragans were the dioceses of Metz, Toul and Verdun. Since the 9th century the Archbishops of Trier were simultaneously princes and since the 11th...

 from 1690 to 1801.

In 1786, the last archbishop-elector of Trier, Clemens Wenceslaus of Saxony
Clemens Wenceslaus of Saxony
Prince Clemens Wenceslaus of Saxony was a German prince from the House of Wettin and the Archbishop-Elector of Trier from 1768 until 1803, the Prince-Bishop of Freising from 1763 until 1768, the Prince-Bishop of Regensburg from 1763 until 1769, and the Prince-Bishop of Augsburg from 1768 until...

, greatly assisted the extension and improvement of the city, turning the Ehrenbreitstein
Ehrenbreitstein
Ehrenbreitstein may refer to:, a district of Koblenz* Ehrenbreitstein Fortress * Ehrenbreitstein , the hill on which the fortress stands on the east bank of the Rhine...

 into a magnificent baroque palace. After the fall of the Bastille
Storming of the Bastille
The storming of the Bastille occurred in Paris on the morning of 14 July 1789. The medieval fortress and prison in Paris known as the Bastille represented royal authority in the centre of Paris. While the prison only contained seven inmates at the time of its storming, its fall was the flashpoint...

 in 1789, the city became, through the invitation of the archbishop-elector's chief minister, Ferdinand Freiherr von Duminique, one of the principal rendezvous points for French émigrés. The archbishop-elector approved of this because he was the uncle of the persecuted king of France, Louis XVI
Louis XVI of France
Louis XVI was a Bourbon monarch who ruled as King of France and Navarre until 1791, and then as King of the French from 1791 to 1792, before being executed in 1793....

. Among the many royalist French refugees who flooded into the city were Louis XVI's two younger brothers, the Comte de Provence and the Comte d'Artois
Charles X of France
Charles X was known for most of his life as the Comte d'Artois before he reigned as King of France and of Navarre from 16 September 1824 until 2 August 1830. A younger brother to Kings Louis XVI and Louis XVIII, he supported the latter in exile and eventually succeeded him...

. In addition, Louis XVI's cousin, the Prince de Condé
Louis Joseph de Bourbon, prince de Condé
Louis Joseph de Bourbon was Prince of Condé from 1740 to his death. A member of the House of Bourbon, he held the prestigious rank of Prince du Sang.-Biography:...

, arrived and formed an army of young aristocrats willing to fight the French Revolution
French Revolution
The French Revolution , sometimes distinguished as the 'Great French Revolution' , was a period of radical social and political upheaval in France and Europe. The absolute monarchy that had ruled France for centuries collapsed in three years...

 and restore the Ancien Régime. The Army of Condé
Army of Condé
The Army of Condé was a French field army during the French Revolutionary Wars. One of several émigré field armies, it was the only one to survive the War of the First Coalition; others had been formed by the Comte d'Artois and Mirabeau-Tonneau...

joined with an allied army of Prussian and Austrian soldiers led by Duke of Brunswick
Charles William Ferdinand, Duke of Brunswick
Charles William Ferdinand , Duke of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel, was a sovereign prince of the Holy Roman Empire, and a professional soldier who served as a Generalfeldmarschall of the Kingdom of Prussia...

 in an unsuccessful invasion of France in 1792. This drew down the wrath of the First French Republic on the archbishop-elector; in 1794, Coblenz was taken by the French Revolutionary army under Marceau
François Séverin Marceau-Desgraviers
François Séverin Marceau-Desgraviers was a French general of the Revolutionary Wars.-Early life:Desgraviers was born at Chartres, Eure-et-Loir. His father served as a legal officer, and Marceau received an education for a legal career, but at the age of sixteen he enlisted in the regiment of...

 (who was killed during the siege), and, after the signing of the Treaty of Lunéville
Treaty of Lunéville
The Treaty of Lunéville was signed on 9 February 1801 between the French Republic and the Holy Roman Emperor Francis II, negotiating both on behalf of his own domains and of the Holy Roman Empire...

 (1801) it was made the capital of the new French départment
Department
A department is a part of a larger organization with a specific responsibility. For the division of organizations into departments, see departmentalization.In particular:...

 of Rhin-et-Moselle
Rhin-et-Moselle
Rhin-et-Moselle is the name of a département of the First French Empire in present Germany. It is named after the rivers Rhine and Moselle. It was formed in 1798, when the left bank of the Rhine was annexed by France. Until the French occupation, its territory was divided between the Archbishopric...

. In 1814, it was occupied by the Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

ns. The Congress of Vienna
Congress of Vienna
The Congress of Vienna was a conference of ambassadors of European states chaired by Klemens Wenzel von Metternich, and held in Vienna from September, 1814 to June, 1815. The objective of the Congress was to settle the many issues arising from the French Revolutionary Wars, the Napoleonic Wars,...

 assigned the city to Prussia
Prussia
Prussia was a German kingdom and historic state originating out of the Duchy of Prussia and the Margraviate of Brandenburg. For centuries, the House of Hohenzollern ruled Prussia, successfully expanding its size by way of an unusually well-organized and effective army. Prussia shaped the history...

, and in 1822, it was made the seat of government for the Prussian Rhine Province
Rhine Province
The Rhine Province , also known as Rhenish Prussia or synonymous to the Rhineland , was the westernmost province of the Kingdom of Prussia and the Free State of Prussia, within the German Reich, from 1822-1946. It was created from the provinces of the Lower Rhine and Jülich-Cleves-Berg...

.

After World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

, France occupied the area once again. In retaliation against the French, the German populace of the city has insisted on using the more German spelling of Koblenz since 1926. During World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 it was the location of the command of Army Group B
Army Group B
Army Group B was the name of three different German Army Groups that saw action during World War II.-Battle for France:The first was involved in the Western Campaign in 1940 in Belgium and the Netherlands which was to be aimed to conquer the Maas bridges after the German airborne actions in Rotterdam...

 and like many other German cities, it was heavily bombed and rebuilt afterwards. Between 1947 and 1950, it served as the seat of government of Rhineland-Palatinate
Rhineland-Palatinate
Rhineland-Palatinate is one of the 16 states of the Federal Republic of Germany. It has an area of and about four million inhabitants. The capital is Mainz. English speakers also commonly refer to the state by its German name, Rheinland-Pfalz ....

.

The Rhine Gorge
Rhine Gorge
The Rhine Gorge is a popular name for the Upper Middle Rhine Valley, a 65 km section of the River Rhine between Koblenz and Bingen in Germany...

 was declared a World Heritage Site
World Heritage Site
A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a place that is listed by the UNESCO as of special cultural or physical significance...

 in 2002, with Koblenz marking the northern end.


Fortified cities


Its defensive works are extensive, and consist of strong forts crowning the hills encircling the town to the west, and the citadel of Ehrenbreitstein
Ehrenbreitstein
Ehrenbreitstein may refer to:, a district of Koblenz* Ehrenbreitstein Fortress * Ehrenbreitstein , the hill on which the fortress stands on the east bank of the Rhine...

 on the opposite bank of the Rhine. The old city was triangular in shape, two sides being bounded by the Rhine and Mosel and the third by a line of fortifications. The latter were razed in 1890, and the town was permitted to expand in this direction. The Koblenz Hauptbahnhof
Koblenz Hauptbahnhof
is the Hauptbahnhof for the city of Koblenz in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate. It is the focal point of rail transport in the Rhine-Moselle-Lahn area. It is a through station in southern Koblenz built below Fort Großfürst Konstantin and opened in 1902 in the Neustadt , which was built...

 (central station) was built on a spacious site outside the former walls at the junction of the Cologne-Mainz railway and the strategic Metz-Berlin line
Cannons Railway
The Cannons Railway is the vernacular name of a former German military strategic railway between Berlin and Metz via Güsten, Wetzlar, Koblenz and Trier...

. In April 2011 Koblenz-Stadtmitte station
Koblenz-Stadtmitte station
Koblenz Stadtmitte station was opened on 14 April 2011 on the West Rhine Railway in central Koblenz in the German state of Rhineland Palatinate. The main purpose of this station is to improve public transport access to central Koblenz because it is more convenient than Koblenz Hauptbahnhof...

 was opened in the inner city to coinicide with the opening of the Federal Garden Show 2011. The Rhine is crossed by the Pfaffendorf Bridge
Pfaffendorf Bridge
The Pfaffendorf Bridge is the oldest bridge over the Rhine at Koblenz in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate. It carries federal highway B 49 over the Rhine and connects central Koblenz with the suburbs of Pfaffendorf and Ehrenbreitstein. The first bridge was completed in 1864...

, originally the location of a rail bridge, but now a road bridge and, a mile south of town, by the Horchheim Railway Bridge, consisting of two wide and lofty spans carrying the Lahn Valley Railway, part of the Berlin railway referred to above. The Moselle is spanned by a Gothic freestone bridge of 14 arches, erected in 1344, two modern road bridges and also by two railway bridges.

Since 1890, the city has consisted of the Altstadt (old city) and the Neustadt (new city) or Klemenstadt. Of these, the Altstadt is closely built and has only a few fine streets and squares, while the Neustadt possesses numerous broad streets and a handsome frontage along the Rhine.

Other sights


In the more ancient part of Koblenz stand several buildings which have a historical interest. Prominent among these, near the point of confluence of the rivers, is the Basilica of St. Castor
Basilica of St. Castor
The Basilica of St. Castor is the oldest church in Koblenz in the German state of Rhineland Palatinate. It is located near Deutsches Eck at the confluence of the Rhine and the Moselle. A fountain called Kastorbrunnen was built in front of the basilica during Napoleon’s invasion of Russia in 1812....

 or Kastorkirche, dedicated to Castor of Karden
Castor of Karden
Saint Castor of Karden was a priest and hermit of the 4th century who is venerated as a saint by the Catholic Church. Castor was a pupil of Maximinus of Trier around 345 AD, and was ordained as a priest by Maximinus. Like his teacher, Castor may have come from the region of Aquitaine...

, with four towers. The church was originally founded in 836 by Louis the Pious
Louis the Pious
Louis the Pious , also called the Fair, and the Debonaire, was the King of Aquitaine from 781. He was also King of the Franks and co-Emperor with his father, Charlemagne, from 813...

, but the present Romanesque
Romanesque architecture
Romanesque architecture is an architectural style of Medieval Europe characterised by semi-circular arches. There is no consensus for the beginning date of the Romanesque architecture, with proposals ranging from the 6th to the 10th century. It developed in the 12th century into the Gothic style,...

 building was completed in 1208, the Gothic
Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture is a style of architecture that flourished during the high and late medieval period. It evolved from Romanesque architecture and was succeeded by Renaissance architecture....

 vaulted roof dating from 1498. In front of the church of Saint Castor stands a fountain, erected by the French in 1812, with an inscription to commemorate Napoleon's invasion of Russia. Not long after, Russian troops occupied Koblenz; and St. Priest, their commander, added in irony these words: "Vu et approuvé par nous, Commandant russe de la Ville de Coblence: Janvier 1er, 1814."

In this quarter of the town, too, is the Liebfrauenkirche, a fine church (nave 1250, choir 1404-1431) with lofty late Romanesque towers; the castle of the electors of Trier
Trier
Trier, historically called in English Treves is a city in Germany on the banks of the Moselle. It is the oldest city in Germany, founded in or before 16 BC....

, erected in 1280, which now contains the municipal picture gallery; and the family house of the Metternichs, where Prince Metternich
Klemens Wenzel von Metternich
Prince Klemens Wenzel von Metternich was a German-born Austrian politician and statesman and was one of the most important diplomats of his era...

, the Austrian statesman, was born in 1773. Also notable is the church of St. Florian, with a two towers façade from c. 1110.

The former Jesuit College is a Baroque edifice by J.C. Sebastiani (1694–1698) serves as the current Town Hall.

Near Koblenz is the Lahneck Castle
Lahneck Castle
Lahneck Castle is a medieval fortress located in the city of Lahnstein in Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany, south of Koblenz. The 13th-century castle stands on a steep rock salient above the confluence of the Lahn River with the Rhine, opposite Castle Stolzenfels, in the district of Oberlahnstein...

 near Lahnstein, open to visitors from 1 April to 31 October.

The city is close to the Bronze Age
Bronze Age
The Bronze Age is a period characterized by the use of copper and its alloy bronze as the chief hard materials in the manufacture of some implements and weapons. Chronologically, it stands between the Stone Age and Iron Age...

 earthworks
Earthworks (archaeology)
In archaeology, earthwork is a general term to describe artificial changes in land level. Earthworks are often known colloquially as 'lumps and bumps'. Earthworks can themselves be archaeological features or they can show features beneath the surface...

 at Goloring
Goloring
The Goloring is an ancient earthworks monument located near Koblenz, Germany. It was created in the Bronze Age era, which dates back to the Urnfield culture . During this time a widespread solar cult is believed to have existed in Central Europe....

, a possible Urnfield calendar constructed some 3000 years ago.

Elector's palace



In the modern part of the town lies the palace (Residenzschloss), with one front looking towards the Rhine, the other into the Neustadt. It was built in 1778-1786 by Clement Wenceslaus, the last elector of Trier, under design by the French architect P.M. d'Ixnard. In 1833, the palace was used as a barracks, and became the final depot for the optical telecommunications system
Prussian semaphore system
The Prussian Semaphore System was a telegraphic communications system used between Berlin and the Rhine Province from 1832 to 1849. It could transmit administrative and military messages by optical signal over a distance of nearly . The telegraph line comprised 62 stations each furnished with a...

 that originated in Potsdam. Today, the elector's former palace is a museum; among other curiosities, it contains some fine Gobelin
Gobelin
Gobelin was the name of a family of dyers, who in all probability came originally from Reims, and who in the middle of the 15th century established themselves in the Faubourg Saint Marcel, Paris, on the banks of the Bièvre....

 tapestries. From it some pretty gardens and promenades (Kaiserin Augusta Anlagen) stretch along the bank of the Rhine, and in them is a memorial to the poet Max von Schenkendorf
Max von Schenkendorf
Gottlob Ferdinand Maximilian Gottfried von Schenkendorf was a German poet, born in Tilsit and educated at Königsberg. During the War of Liberation, in which he took an active part, Schenkendorf was associated with Arndt and Körner in the writing of patriotic songs...

. A fine statue to the empress Augusta, whose favourite residence was Coblenz, stands in the Luisenplatz. But of all public memorials the most striking is the colossal equestrian statue of the emperor William I of Germany, erected by the Rhine provinces in 1897, standing on a lofty and massive pedestal, at the point where the Rhine and Mosel meet.

William I monument


The Teutonic Knights
Teutonic Knights
The Order of Brothers of the German House of Saint Mary in Jerusalem , commonly the Teutonic Order , is a German medieval military order, in modern times a purely religious Catholic order...

 were given an area for their Deutschherrenhaus Balley right at the confluence of the Rhine and Mosel, which became known as German Corner (Deutsches Eck
Deutsches Eck
Deutsches Eck is the name of a headland in Koblenz where the Moselle joins the Rhine. In 1897, nine years after the death of the German Emperor William I, the former emperor was honoured with a giant equestrian statue bearing an inscription quoting a German poem: "Nimmer wird das Reich zerstöret,...

).

In 1897, a monument to German Emperor
German Emperor
This article is about the emperors of the German Empire. For full list of German monarchs before 1871, see List of German monarchs.The German Emperor was the official title of the Head of State and ruler of the German Empire, beginning with the proclamation of Wilhelm I as emperor during the...

 William I of Germany, mounted on a 14 meter high horse, was inaugurated there by his grandson William II. The architect was Bruno Schmitz
Bruno Schmitz
Bruno Schmitz , was a German architect best known for his monuments in the early 1900s, working closely with sculptors such as Emil Hundrieser, Nikolaus Geiger and Franz Metzner for integrated architectural and sculptural effect...

, who was responsible for a number of nationalistic German monuments and memorials. The German Corner is since associated with this monument, the (re) foundation of the German Empire and the German refusal of any French claims to the area, as described in the song "Die Wacht am Rhein
Die Wacht am Rhein
"Die Wacht am Rhein" is a German patriotic anthem. The song's origins are rooted in historical conflicts with France, and it was particularly popular in Germany during the Franco-Prussian War and the First World War....

" together with the "Wacht am Rhein" called "Niederwalddenkmal
Niederwalddenkmal
The Niederwalddenkmal is a monument located in the Niederwald Landscape park, near Rüdesheim am Rhein in Hesse, Germany.- History :The monument was constructed to commemorate the foundation of the German Empire after the end of Franco-Prussian War. The first stone was laid on September 16, 1871, by...

" somewhat 30 km upstream.

During World War II, the statue was destroyed by US artillery. The French occupation administration intended the complete destruction of the monument and wanted to replace it with a new one.

In 1953, Bundespräsident Theodor Heuss
Theodor Heuss
Theodor Heuss was a liberal German politician who served as the first President of the Federal Republic of Germany after World War II from 1949 to 1959...

 re-dedicated the monument to German unity
German reunification
German reunification was the process in 1990 in which the German Democratic Republic joined the Federal Republic of Germany , and when Berlin reunited into a single city, as provided by its then Grundgesetz constitution Article 23. The start of this process is commonly referred by Germans as die...

, adding the signs of the remaining western federal states as well as the ones of the lost areas in the East. A Flag of Germany
Flag of Germany
The flag of Germany is a tricolour consisting of three equal horizontal bands displaying the national colours of Germany: black, red, and gold....

 waved there since. The Saarland
Saarland
Saarland is one of the sixteen states of Germany. The capital is Saarbrücken. It has an area of 2570 km² and 1,045,000 inhabitants. In both area and population, it is the smallest state in Germany other than the city-states...

 was added four years later after the population had voted to join Germany.

In the 1980s, a movie of the monument was often shown on late night TV when the National Anthem was played to mark the end of the day, a practise which was discontinued when nonstop broadcasting became common.
On 3 October 1990, the very day the former GDR states joined, their signs were added to the monument.

As German unity was considered complete and the areas under Polish administration were ceded to Poland, the monument lost its official active purpose, now only reminding of past history. In 1993, the flag was replaced by a copy of the statue, donated by a local couple. The day chosen for the reinstatement of the statue, however, caused controversy as it coincided with Sedantag
Sedantag
Sedantag was a semi-official memorial holiday in the German Empire celebrated on the second of September to commemorate Emperor Frederick III's victory in the Battle of Sedan...

 (Sedan Day) (2 September 1870) a day of celebration remembering Germany's victory over France in the Battle of Sedan. The event was widely celebrated from the 1870s until the turn of the century.

Incorporated villages


Formerly separate villages now incorporated into the jurisdiction of the city of Koblenz
Date Village Area Date Village Area
1 July 1891 Neuendorf mit Lützel 547 hectares (2.1 sq mi) 7 June 1969 Kesselheim ?
1 April 1902 Moselweiß 382 hectares (1.5 sq mi) 7 June 1969 Kapellen-Stolzenfels ?
1 October 1923 Wallersheim 229 hectare (0.884173943176905 sq mi) 7 November 1970 Arenberg-Immendorf ?
1 July 1937 Asterstein (Teil von Pfaffendorf) ? 7 November 1970 Arzheim 487 hectares (1.9 sq mi)
1 July 1937 Ehrenbreitstein 120 hectare (0.463322590311042 sq mi) 7 November 1970 Bubenheim 314 hectares (1.2 sq mi)
1 July 1937 Horchheim 772 hectares (3 sq mi) 7 November 1970 Güls mit Bisholder ?
1 July 1937 Metternich 483 hectares (1.9 sq mi) 7 November 1970 Lay ?
1 July 1937 Niederberg 203 hectare (0.783787381942846 sq mi) 7 November 1970 Rübenach ?
1 July 1937 Pfaffendorf mit Asterstein 369 hectares (1.4 sq mi)

Economy



Koblenz is a principal seat of the Mosel and Rhenish wine trade, and also does a large business in the export of mineral waters. Its manufactures include automotive parts (braking systems - TRW Automotive
TRW Automotive
TRW Automotive , headquartered in Livonia, Michigan, USA, is a major global supplier of automotive systems, modules and components to automotive original equipment manufacturers and related aftermarkets....

, gas springs and hydraulic vibration dampers - Stabilus), aluminium coils (Aleris Aluminum), pianos, paper, cardboard, machinery, boats, and barges. Since the 17th century, it has been home to the Königsbacher
Königsbacher
Königsbacher is a brewery in Koblenz, in the Rhineland-Palatinate state of Germany. Since its foundation in 1689, it has a tradition of brewing beer in the Old Brewery in the historic center of Koblenz. In 1992, the Königsbacher Brewery was taken over by the Karlsberg Group...

 brewery (the Old Brewery in Koblenz's center, and now a plant in Koblenz-Stolzenfels). It is an important transit centre for the Rhine railways and for the Rhine navigation.

The headquarters of the German Army Forces Command
German Army Forces Command
Army Command in Falckenstein Barracks in Koblenz is one of the two leadership pillars of the German Army, together with the German Army Office....

 is located in the city.

Transport




Roads


To the west of the town is the autobahn A 61
Bundesautobahn 61
is an autobahn in Germany that connects the border to the Netherlands near Venlo in the northwest to the interchange with A 6 near Hockenheim. In 1965, this required a re-design of the Hockenheimring....

, connecting Ludwigshafen and Mönchengladbach, to the north is the east-west running A 48, connecting the A 1, Saarbrücken-Cologne, with the A 3, Frankfurt-Cologne. The city is also on various federal highways
Bundesstraße
Bundesstraße , abbreviated B, is the denotation for German and Austrian national highways.-Germany:...

 9, 42, 49, 416, 258 and 327. The Glockenberg Tunnel connects the Pfaffendorf Bridge
Pfaffendorf Bridge
The Pfaffendorf Bridge is the oldest bridge over the Rhine at Koblenz in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate. It carries federal highway B 49 over the Rhine and connects central Koblenz with the suburbs of Pfaffendorf and Ehrenbreitstein. The first bridge was completed in 1864...

 to the B 42.
The following bridges cross:
  • the Rhine: Bendorf Autobahn Bridge, Pfaffendorf Bridge
    Pfaffendorf Bridge
    The Pfaffendorf Bridge is the oldest bridge over the Rhine at Koblenz in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate. It carries federal highway B 49 over the Rhine and connects central Koblenz with the suburbs of Pfaffendorf and Ehrenbreitstein. The first bridge was completed in 1864...

    , Horchheim Rail Bridge, South Bridge
  • the Moselle: Balduin Bridge, Mosel Rail Bridge, Europe Bridge, Koblenz Barrage, Kurt-Schumacher Bridge, Güls Rail Bridge

Railways


Koblenz Hbf
Koblenz Hauptbahnhof
is the Hauptbahnhof for the city of Koblenz in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate. It is the focal point of rail transport in the Rhine-Moselle-Lahn area. It is a through station in southern Koblenz built below Fort Großfürst Konstantin and opened in 1902 in the Neustadt , which was built...

is an Intercity-Express stop on the West Rhine Railway between Bonn
Bonn Hauptbahnhof
is a railway station located on the left bank of the Rhine along the Cologne–Mainz line. It is the principal station serving the city of Bonn. In addition to extensive rail service from Deutsche Bahn it acts as a hub for local bus, tram, and Stadtbahn services....

 and Mainz
Mainz Hauptbahnhof
is the Hauptbahnhof for the city of Mainz in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate. It is used by about 80,000 travellers and visitors each day and is therefore one of the busiest 21 stations in Germany...

 and is also served by trains on the East Rhine Railway Wiesbaden
Wiesbaden Hauptbahnhof
is the Hauptbahnhof for the city of Wiesbaden, the state capital of the German state of Hesse. It is a terminal station at the southern edge of the city center and is served by over 500 long-distance and regional trains and used by more than 30,000 travelers each day.-History:The current station...

Cologne
Köln Hauptbahnhof
Köln Hauptbahnhof is the central railway station in Cologne, Germany.The station is an important local, national and international hub, with many ICE, Thalys and Intercity trains calling there, as well as regional RegionalExpress, RegionalBahn and local S-Bahn trains...

. Koblenz is the beginning of the Moselle line to Trier
Trier Hauptbahnhof
is the Hauptbahnhof for the city of Trier, in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate. It is a through station located about east of the inner city and the Porta Nigra.-History:...

 (and connecting to Luxemburg
Luxembourg railway station
Luxembourg railway station is the main railway station serving Luxembourg City, in southern Luxembourg. It is operated by Chemins de Fer Luxembourgeois, the state-owned railway company....

 and Saarbrücken
Saarbrücken Hauptbahnhof
Saarbrücken Hauptbahnhof is the main or central railway station in the German city of Saarbrücken and the largest station in the Saarland, a German state on the border with France. Around 10 million passengers use the station annually...

) and the Lahn Valley Railway to Limburg
Limburg (Lahn) station
Limburg station is a station of the city of Limburg an der Lahn in the German state of Hesse. It is on the Lahn Valley Railway , running between Koblenz and Gießen. The only section of this that is electrified in the Limburg area is between Limburg freight yard and Eschhofen station...

 and Gießen
Gießen station
Gießen railway station is the main railway station in Gießen, Hesse, Germany. The station is a Category 2 station is used by 20,000 passengers daily. The station was opened on 25 August 1850 and is located on the Main-Weser Railway and Dill railway . The current station reception building was...

. The other stations in Koblenz are Koblenz-Ehrenbreitstein
Koblenz-Ehrenbreitstein station
Koblenz-Ehrenbreitstein station is the only station on the right bank in the city of of Koblenz in the German state of Rhineland-Palatinate...

, Koblenz-Güls, Koblenz-Lützel, Koblenz-Moselweiß and Koblenz Stadtmitte, which opened on 14 April 2011.

Education


The campus Koblenz of University of Koblenz and Landau
University of Koblenz and Landau
The University of Koblenz-Landau is a university located in Koblenz and Landau, Germany. It was founded in 1990.-History and profile:...

 is located in the city.
The University of Applied Sciences Koblenz (German
German language
German is a West Germanic language, related to and classified alongside English and Dutch. With an estimated 90 – 98 million native speakers, German is one of the world's major languages and is the most widely-spoken first language in the European Union....

: Fachhochschule Koblenz) is also located in the city.

Twin towns - Sister cities


Koblenz is twinned with: Haringey
London Borough of Haringey
The London Borough of Haringey is a London borough, in North London, classified by some definitions as part of Inner London, and by others as part of Outer London. It was created in 1965 by the amalgamation of three former boroughs. It shares borders with six other London boroughs...

, London
London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

, United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 Maastricht
Maastricht
Maastricht is situated on both sides of the Meuse river in the south-eastern part of the Netherlands, on the Belgian border and near the German border...

, Netherlands
Netherlands
The Netherlands is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, located mainly in North-West Europe and with several islands in the Caribbean. Mainland Netherlands borders the North Sea to the north and west, Belgium to the south, and Germany to the east, and shares maritime borders...

 Nevers
Nevers
Nevers is a commune in – and the administrative capital of – the Nièvre department in the Bourgogne region in central France...

, France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 Norwich
Norwich
Norwich is a city in England. It is the regional administrative centre and county town of Norfolk. During the 11th century, Norwich was the largest city in England after London, and one of the most important places in the kingdom...

, United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 Novara
Novara
Novara is the capital city of the province of Novara in the Piedmont region in northwest Italy, to the west of Milan. With c. 105,000 inhabitants, it is the second most populous city in Piedmont after Turin. It is an important crossroads for commercial traffic along the routes from Milan to Turin...

, Italy
Italy
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

 Petah Tikva
Petah Tikva
Petah Tikva known as Em HaMoshavot , is a city in the Center District of Israel, east of Tel Aviv.According to the Central Bureau of Statistics, at the end of 2009, the city's population stood at 209,600. The population density is approximately...

, Israel
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

 Varaždin
Varaždin
Varaždin is a city in north Croatia, north of Zagreb on the highway A4. The total population is 47,055, with 38,746 on of the city settlement itself . The centre of Varaždin county is located near the Drava river, at...

, Croatia
Croatia
Croatia , officially the Republic of Croatia , is a unitary democratic parliamentary republic in Europe at the crossroads of the Mitteleuropa, the Balkans, and the Mediterranean. Its capital and largest city is Zagreb. The country is divided into 20 counties and the city of Zagreb. Croatia covers ...

 Austin
Austin, Texas
Austin is the capital city of the U.S. state of :Texas and the seat of Travis County. Located in Central Texas on the eastern edge of the American Southwest, it is the fourth-largest city in Texas and the 14th most populous city in the United States. It was the third-fastest-growing large city in...

, United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...


Popular culture


In Philip Reeve
Philip Reeve
Philip Reeve is a British author and illustrator. He presently lives on Dartmoor with his wife Sarah and their son Samuel.-Biography:...

's series The Mortal Engines Quartet, Koblenz, as Panzerstadt Koblenz
Traktionstadtsgesellschaft
The Traktionstadtsgesellschaft is an organization of German cities in the novel A Darkling Plain by Philip Reeve....

, is a member of the Traktionstadtsgesellschaft
Traktionstadtsgesellschaft
The Traktionstadtsgesellschaft is an organization of German cities in the novel A Darkling Plain by Philip Reeve....

, a fictional league of German traction cities
Traction City
In Philip Reeve's Mortal Engines Quartet, Traction Cities are vast metropolises built on tiers that are capable of moving on gigantic wheels and caterpillar tracks. These cities hunt smaller cities which in turn hunt towns which in turn hunt villages and static settlements...

 formed to combat the ruthless advance of the Anti-tractionists
Anti-Traction League
In Philip Reeve's book-series Mortal Engines Quartet, the Anti-Traction League is an organization opposed to the prevalence of Traction Cities and Municipal Darwinism. Its symbol is that of a broken wheel.-Geography:...

, thousands of years in the future.

In John Christopher
Samuel Youd
Samuel Youd is a British author, best known for his science fiction writings under the pseudonym John Christopher, including the novel The Death of Grass and the young adult oriented novel series The Tripods...

's post-apocalyptic series The Tripods
The Tripods
The Tripods is a series of young adult novels written by John Christopher, beginning in 1967. The first two were the basis of a science fiction TV-series, produced in the United Kingdom in the 1980s....

, one of the three domed cities built by the alien invaders is located close to Koblenz; it is the setting of most of the second novel, The City of Gold and Lead.

The children's toy yo-yo
Yo-yo
The yo-yo in its simplest form is an object consisting of an axle connected to two disks, and a length of twine looped around the axle, similar to a slender spool...

 was nicknamed de Coblenz (Koblenz) in 18th century France, referring to the large number of noble French émigré
Émigré
Émigré is a French term that literally refers to a person who has "migrated out", but often carries a connotation of politico-social self-exile....

es then living in the city.

External links