Archive for November 29th, 2009



The Dom, Wetzlar Germany

Happy Sunday.

The Dom, almost a cathedral, was built over several centuries beginning in the 1100s. It was never finished. Hence the almost.  The building follows the historical fortunes of the town of Wetzlar as the salt and iron trades waxed and waned in Germany…not to mention the political tides, as the area saw active warfare all through the middle ages (not to mention in our current era). As the city fathers had funds, they undertook massive and ambitious building plans on the Dom, necessarily given the time lapses, under several different architects, each with a vision suitable to his time. There are doors in the interior walls that open on empty space, and the unfinished new cathedral surrounds the more or less complete old church like a broken shell. The space between the two walls became a graveyard over the years, and literally thousands are buried there. Two main towers were planned. One is complete. The other just a stump.

Perhaps the most interesting thing about the Dom, from my viewpoint, is that is used by both the Catholic and Protestant communions in Wetzlar. The Catholic sanctuary faces one direction toward an alter, and the Protestant sanctuary faces the other toward a pulpit. They meet in the back rows exactly in the center of the massive central church.

This is an unconventional view, taken from blocks away and up the hill by the amphitheater. I had to climb up steps and hold my camera above my head to get over the intervening buildings and trees. Even then the bottom of the image has been cropped off.

You can see the very different types of architecture in this one shot.

Sony DSC H50 at abgo