My Illlustrated Travel Journal with Essays about Roman and Mediaeval History and some Geology


22.1.12
  From Imperial Hall to Mediaeval Castle - The Aula Palatina in Trier

Salvete amici. Yes, it's me again, your friend Aelius Rufus. Gabriele told me to ignore the fact that I wasn't alive when the Aula Palatina, also known as Basilica of Constantine in Trier was built. You got this friend in Britannia, she said, you'll figure out something. She handed me the link (something like a virtual wax tablet) to an old post about the place - this one is too short and boring, she said, and it appears at place 3 on Google Search so people read it. Make it more fun.

That Google Search sounds like something our authors would have loved to have. You can find information about everything there, even about those German tribes Tacitus never really met.

Well, a lot of the information isn't any more reliable than Tacitus' hearsay stories about my ancestors, but yes, some sites are helpful.

Aula Palatina, aka Constantine's Basilica, seen from the west

The Aula Palatina has survived because several important people over time thought it was of better use intact than as quarry (like so many other Roman buildings). It's today one of the largest rooms that has survived from my time. Though I must admit the roof had fallen in in the 5th century and it took some time to get a new roof up - those barbarian Franks or Merovingians or whatever they called themselves at the time (sorry, Gabriele, the history of that time is a mess not even Merlinus can make sense of) probably had no idea how to construct a roof that large.

Aelius, it was a worse mess in Britannia, and the fact that Merlinus appears in several sources and songs makes me wonder about his time travel research methods. *grin*

(Aula Palatina, interior)

And especially for Constance who I understand likes to have numbers, here's the measures of the hall. The length is 71.5 metres (including the apsis), the breadth 32.6 metres. The original height can only be estimated since the original roof got lost; it's supposed to have been about 33 metres with the gable top at 40 m. The walls are 2.70 metres thick. Yeah, we built walls there. ;)

A hall like this shows the difference between the residence of a governor and that of an emperor. Everything needs to be two or three sizes larger. Or four, if you can find the money. The Aula Palatina was built on the foundations of a palace from my time, the living quarters, offices, and representation rooms of the legatus Augusti pro praetore, or governor. That one already had a rather large main hall with an open anteroom with some pretty colonnades. Not the place an auxiliary soldiers usually gets to see - we're not invited to the posh parties - but I served as messenger and had to see the governor, so I could take a peek. Not bad at all, marble floors and some nice frescoes on the walls. But it got out of fashion in the 3rd century and nothing remains of the dismantled hall and the governor's living quarters.

Treviris got a boost when it became the favourite residence of Emperor Maximinianus who supposedly planned for the Extreme Makeover Home Edition of the governor's residence. Though it fell to his successors Constantius Chlorus and Constantine the Great to get the actual work done. It's often ascribed to Constantine alone, but since that emperor left a lot of half finished projects behind when he moved his main seat to Constantinople in AD 326, while the Aula Palatina and the palace were completed, it's more likely work had begun before his time. Though somne bricks with a stamp from a factory dating to 310 shows that building was still going on then.

Today the Aula Palatina looks like a single building, but at the time it was erected, the hall was part of a larger complex. For one, it had another hall laying crosswise in front so both buldings formed a reverse T. That one was a pretty big affair, too, with a length of 67 metres (again, including the apsides at the ends) and a depth of 16.5 m . Additional smaller pillared halls stood at the sides of the aula.

Aula Palatina, interior, view to the apsis

The walls are made of bricks, and like most other Roman buildings, were whitewashed (dunno why you people in the future never put the paint back on), only the window reveals were decorated with golden leaves on red background - faded rests of them can still be seen in some parts. The quality of those paintings is outstanding.

The walls inside the hall were lined with marble all the way to the upper row of windows (how's that for fancy insulation, lol), and the floor was laid out in white and black marble tiles. A few tricks made the room look even larger: the windows and the niches below them in the apsis get smaller towards the middle and create a perspectivic illusion. Those niches served to hold statues of the Imperial family. The glassed windows are 7 metres high and 3.50 m wide though the seem smaller because the hall is so large.

There was a wooden gallery along the upper row of the windows along the long walls and the apsis. It was anchored in the walls (so no wooden pillars) and painted so it looked more massive than it was. The feature gave access to the upper windows and sturctured the large room horizontally.

Now, Trier isn't the coldest place in Germany, but it's not Rome-sort of warm either. So, how did the emperor, the magistrates, staff, vistors and whatnot stay warm in such a huge hall? Well, hypocaust heating does the charm, and it didn't only heat the floor but also the walls up to the first row of windowsills. One of the reasons the walls are so thick.

Closeup of some of the windows

After the Emperor left and the Germans started invading big scale in the 4th century, Trier's splendour declined but it survived as town and with some of the buildings more or less intact, because it had become the seat of a bishop. I've mentioned in my post about the amphitheatre that Constantine legalised the Christian cultus, and bishops are a rank of their leaders, like a pontifex or something. And obviously, they like a bit or Roman luxury. They also built what they call churches on the remains of Roman halls and baths, though - part of the Imperial palace can today be found under the cathedral.

The next time the Franks invaded (475) they didn't come for plunder but to stay. For one, that was the end of the first church erected on parts of the palace and some villas of rich magistrates - the Germans definitely were not Christians at the time, and burnt the thing down to ruins. The Aula Palatina fared better, becasue the leader of those Franks liked the place and made it his seat.

Actually, he didn't use the great hall for his living quarters - I suspect the hypocaust heating wasn't working and the hall too cold - but one of the side wings. It was still a most impressive seat for a barbarian count. The aula itself was used for storage for the entire village, and the windows walled in. It was at that time the roof collapsed. Gabriele thinks the storage was maybe kept in huts built inside the roofless hall while the thick walls served as a good protection, also from fellow barbarians who may have been interested in carrying stuff away. In case of war people could have found shelter in the ruins as well (like it happened with the amphitheatre). From Imperial representation hall to barbarian fortress, what a career. But it survived reasonably intact.

Another view of the Aula Palatina

The Aula Palatina was used as castle in the Middle Ages as well (there's a documentary proof from 1008). Later (around 1190) Archbishop Johann I renovated the aula and used it as his seat. He turned the apsis into a keep, with additional towers in the opposite corners; the walls got merlons and a battlement, the walled-in windows were reopened but in smaller scale. The roof was repaired so that the aula now looked like a palas with an adjacent keep (usually, keep and palas are separate buildings in a castle) and corner towers. The anteroom may have become a gatehouse.

If you wonder why a pontifex would need a castle - well, those bishops and archbishops in Medieaval times were no mere priests but held secular power as well. And they got enemies, and sometimes they got involved in wars. So a keep came handy, and a representative hall as well. Power is always a good deal about demonstrating it.

The Aula Palatina looked like that until about 1600. The next significant change happened under Archbishop Lothar of Metternich at the beginning of the 17th century. He tore down what remained of the Roman buildings outside the aula and had a four winged palace built around the it. Most of the southern wall was dismantled to obtain an immediate connection. One of his successors, Johann Philipp von Waldendorff (1756-1768, archbishop and prince elector), wanted an even prettier palace, so the architect Johannes Seitz built him that pink thing you can see on the photo below.

Kurfürstliches Palais (Electoral Palace), behind it the south side of the Basilica

It's all playful rococo and a horrible colour not even the Romans would have liked; and they used a good deal more colour than todays remains and reconstructions let you imagine. Gabriele calls it candy pink. She took the photo because it's so horrible it's fun, she says.

Fortunately, King Friedrich Wilhelm IV of Prussia who was very interested in architecture, and Carl Schnitzler, officer and architect, had the Aula Palatina returned to its original Roman shape (1856), with no towers and palace wings intruding into its walls, but the original large windows and a cassette roof instead. The one thing they did was to add pseudo-historical paintings instead of the - probably too expensive - marbe linings. But the aula burned out during WW2 and the post-war renovation removed what was left of those paintings, reducing the building to the original brick walls.

It looks more austere today than it may have done in Roman times, though. The whitewashed exterior walls should have looked more friendly. The aula is today used as Protestant (a sect of the Christians, I think) church. It's often called Constantine's Basilica these days.

And now Gabriele tells me I should also rewrite the post about the Imperial Baths. *sigh*
 
Comments:
Awesome pictures. And of course a very interesting discussion of its history.
 
Impressive
 
Thank you, Ann.

Hank, yes, it is an impressive building. To imagine it was once shininly white - I bet it did what the emperors wanted and stunned many visitors. :)
 
Wonder what those little windows on the left were for.
Lighting a stair well?
 
That basilica is Incredible - the room! The space!
And that horrible pink wedding cake of palace on the outside!!

Well, the Romans might have just loved it. You never know. It just looks dreadfully out of place there, lol.
 
Good question, Bernita. Since there never was a staircase anywhere in the aula, it can't be that, but I agree, they're strange.

Sam, the colour of this palace makes me wonder about that Elector - maybe he had a collection of statues of nude Roman men in this wedding cake. *grin*
 
maybe he had a collection of statues of nude Roman men in this wedding cake. *grin*

I bet he did. And not only statues... *Naughty grin*

I like that pink palace, actually, but then, I like anything pink. :-) Does look out of place, though.
 
Lol, Edward has some bad influence on you. *naughty grin, too*

Out of place, that's it. It would look fine as annex to Versailles. :)
 
Wow, Constantine's Basilica is an imposing building.
 
The Romans liked their buildings big, that's for sure. :) Even their ruins are still impressive.
 
Welcome back, Aelius Rufus :-)

Who was the Frankish count who moved into the Aula Palatina, and how do we know about him? (Gregory of Tours?)
 
Better preserved than the stuff in Rome.
 
Thank you for the numbers! It's a very imposing building, inside and out. I bet I'd feel really small in there.
 
Carla,
I could not find a name of the Frankish count (or warlord or whatever he may have styled himself) but all my references about the Aula Palatina agree on him having been there, so it may be correct. It can be proven by archaeologial means that the aula has been used as storage room, and probably also that other rooms had been inhabited by someone not of Roman culture. Some shinies and grave finds from that time point at someone of higher rank.

There has been another Frankish noble connected with Trier, Arbogast, but he was around earlier (AD 388), a Roman officer - magister peditum in the West - an all. He was involved in the execution of Magnus Maxiumus and his son Victor during the time of Theodosius - one of those unruly epochs where the claimants to the imperial title lined up quite a bit. :)

Stag, Rome's Rome, and Germany is Germany, lol. Though it is a pity Rome doesn't care for its heritage the way it should. Spend the money on that and not bunga bunga.

Constance, yes, the hall is imposing. A number of churches I've seen may be larger, but there are a lot more pillars and vaults around, not one great room like here.
 
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The Lost Fort is a travel journal and history blog based on my travels in Germany, the UK, Scandinavia, and other places. It includes essays on Roman and Mediaeval history, as well as some geology, illustrated with photos of old castles and churches, Roman remains, and beautiful landscapes.

All texts (except comments by guests) and photos (if no other copyright is noted) on this blog are copyright of Gabriele Campbell.
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Location: Germany

I'm a blogger from Germany with a MA in Literature and History which doesn't pay my bills, so I use it to research blogposts instead. I'm interested in everything Roman and Mediaeval, avid reader and sometimes writer, opera enthusiast, traveller with a liking for foreign languages and odd rocks, photographer, and tea aficionado. And an old-fashioned blogger who hasn't yet gotten an Instagram account. :-)



Illustrated travel essays: Roman remains, Mediaeval buildings and ruins, other places; sorted by country


Roman Times

The Romans at War

Different Frontiers, Yet Alike
Exercise Halls
Mile Castles and Watch Towers
Reconstructed Fort Walls
Soldiers' Living Quarters
Cavalry Barracks

Roman Ships
Transport Barges

Life and Religion

Religious Sites
The Mithraeum of Brocolita
Mithras Altars in Germania
A Roman Memorial Stone


Germania

Attempts at Conquest

Romans at Lippe and Ems
Anniversary Exhibitions in Haltern am See
Varus Statue, Haltern am See

Romans at the Weser
The Roman Camp at Hedemünden
Weapon Finds

The Limes and its Forts

Limes Fort Osterburken
The Discovery
The Cohort castellum
The Annex Fort
The Garrisons

Limes Fort Saalburg
Introduction
Main Gate
Shrine of the Standards
The Walls
The vicus

Romans in Bavaria
Overview: Aalen, Weissenburg, Regensburg
The Fort in Aalen - Barracks

Provinces and Borderlands

Romans at Rhine and Moselle
Boppard - A 4th Century Roman Fort

Roman Villas
Villa Rustica Wachenheim
Wachenheim Villa, Baths and Toilets
Wachenheim Villa, Cellar

Roman Towns

Augusta Treverorum (Trier)
The Amphitheatre
The Aula Palatina
The Imperial Baths - Roman Times
The Imperial Baths - Post Roman
Porta Nigra - Roman Times
The Roman Bridge

Colonia Ulpia Traiana (Xanten)
History of the Town
The Amphitheatre in Birten

Moguntiacum (Mainz)
The Temple of Isis and Mater Magna


Gallia Belgica

Roman Towns

Atuatuca Tungrorum
Roman Remains in Tongeren


Britannia

Frontiers, Fortifications, Forts

The Hadrian's Wall
Introduction / Photo Collection
Fort Baths
Fort Headquarters
Building the Wall
The Wall as Defense Line

Wall Forts - Banna (Birdoswald)
The Dark Age Timber Halls

Wall Forts - Segedunum (Wallsend)
Introduction
The Museum
The Viewing Tower
The Baths

Signal Stations
The Signal Station at Scarborough

Roman Towns

Eboracum (York)
Bath in the Fortress
Multiangular Tower

Romans in Wales

The Forts in Wales
Overview

Roman Forts - Isca (Caerleon)
The Amphitheatre
The Baths in the Legionary Fort


Mediaeval Times

Living Mediaeval
Dungeons and Oubliettes
Pit House (Grubenhaus)
Medical Instruments

Mediaeval Art
The Choir Screen in the Cathedral of Mainz
The Gospels of Heinrich the Lion
Mediaeval Monster Carvings
The Viking Treasure of Hiddensee - The Historical Context
The Viking Treasure of Hiddensee - The Craftmanship

Mediaeval Weapons
Swords
Trebuchets
Combat Scenes


Mediaeval Germany

Towns

Braunschweig
Medieaval Braunschweig, Introduction
Lion Benches in the Castle Square
The Quadriga

Erfurt
A Virtual Tour through Mediaeval Erfurt

Magdeburg
Magdeburg Cathedral
St.Mary's Abbey - An Austere Archbishop
St.Mary's Abbey - Reformation to Reunion

Paderborn
Town Portrait

Speyer
The Cathedral: Architecture
Cathedral: Richard Lionheart in Speyer
Jewish Ritual Bath

Xanten
Town Portrait
The Gothic House

Towns in the Harz

Goslar
Town Portrait

Quedlinburg
Town Portrait
The Chapter Church

Towns of the Hanseatic League

Lübeck
St. Mary's Church, Introduction

Stralsund
The Harbour

Wismar
The Old Harbour


Castles and Fortresses

Castles in Bavaria

Coburg Fortress
The History of the Fortress
The Architecture

Castles in the Harz

Ebersburg
The Architecture
Power Base of the Thuringian Landgraves
The Marshals of Ebersburg

Harzburg
The Harzburg and Otto IV

Hohnstein
Origins of the Counts of Hohnstein
The Family Between Welfen and Staufen
A Time of Feuds (14th-15th century)

Regenstein
Introduction
The Time of Henry the Lion

Scharzfels
Introduction
History

Hidden Treasures
The Stauffenburg near Seesen

Castles in Hessia

Castles in Northern Hessia
Grebenstein
Reichenbach
Sichelnstein

Kugelsburg
The Counts of Everstein
Troubled Times
War and Decline

Weidelsburg
The History of the Castle
The Architecture
The Castle After the Restoration

Castles in Lower Saxony

Adelebsen / Hardeg
The Keep of Adelebsen Castle
The Great Hall of Hardeg Castle

Hardenberg
Introduction

Plesse
Rise and Fall of the Counts of Winzenburg
The Lords of Plesse
Architecture / Decline and Rediscovery

Castles in the Solling
Salzderhelden - A Welfen Seat
Grubenhagen

Castles in Thuringia

Brandenburg
The Double Castle
Role of the Castle in Thuringian History

Castles in the Eichsfeld
Altenstein at the Werra
Castle Scharfenstein

Hanstein
Introduction
Otto of Northeim
Heinrich the Lion and Otto IV
The Next Generations

Normanstein
Introduction

Wartburg
A Virtual Tour

Castles at the Weser

Bramburg
River Reivers

Krukenburg
History and Architecture
Outbuilding 'Shepherd's Barn'

Polle
The Castle and its History
Views from the Keep

Sababurg / Trendelburg
Two Fairy Tale Castles


Churches and Cathedrals

Churches in the Harz

Steinkirche near Scharzfeld
Development of the Cave Church

Walkenried Monastery
From Monastery to Museum

Churches in Lower Saxony

Königslutter
Exterior Decorations
Cloister

Wiebrechtshausen
Nunnery and Ducal Burial

Churches in Thuringia

Göllingen Monastery
Traces of Byzantine Architecture

Heiligenstadt
St.Martin's Church
St.Mary's Church

Churches at the Weser

Bursfelde Abbey
Early History

Fredelsloh Chapter Church
History and Architecture

Helmarshausen
Remains of the Monastery

Lippoldsberg Abbey
History
Interior

Vernawahlshausen
Mediaeval Murals


Reconstructed Sites

Palatine Seat Tilleda
The Defenses

Viking Settlement Haithabu
Haithabu and the Archaeological Museum Schleswig
The Nydam Ship

Miscellanea

Other Mediaeval Buildings
Lorsch, Gate Hall
Palatine Seat and Monastery Pöhlde

Miscellanea - Along Weser and Werra
Bad Karlshafen
Hannoversch-Münden
Uslar
Treffurt
Weser Ferry
Weser Skywalk


Mediaeval England

Towns

Chester
A Walk Through the Town

Hexham
Old Gaol

York
Clifford Tower, Part 1
Clifford Tower, Part 2
Guild Hall
Monk Bar Gate and Richard III Museum
Museum Gardens
Old Town
Along the Ouse River

Castles

Castles in Cumbria

Carlisle
Introduction
Henry II and William of Scotland
The Edwards

Castles in Northumbria and Yorkshire

Alnwick
Malcolm III and the First Battle of Alnwick

Scarborough
From the Romans to the Tudors
From the Civil War to the Present

Churches and Cathedrals

Hexham Abbey
Introduction

York Minster
Architecture


Mediaeval Scotland

Towns

Edinburgh
Views from the Castle

Stirling
The Wallace Monument

Castles

Central Scotland

Doune
A Virtual Tour
History: The Early Stewart Kings
History: Royal Dower House, and Decline

Stirling
Robert the Bruce and Stirling Castle

West Coast Castles

Dunollie and Kilchurn
Castles Seen from Afar

Duart
Guarding the Sound of Mull

Dunstaffnage
An Ancient MacDougall Stronghold
The Wars of Independence
The Campbells Are Coming
Dunstaffnage Chapel

Abbeys and Churches

Inchcolm Abbey
Arriving at Inchcolm

Other Historical Sites

Picts and Dalriatans
Dunadd Hill Fort
Staffa


Mediaeval Wales

Towns

Walks in Welsh Towns
Aberystwyth: Castle and Coast
Caerleon: The Ffwrwm
Conwy: The Smallest House in Great Britain

Castles

Edwardian Castles

Beaumaris
The Historical Context
The Architecture

Caernarfon
Master James of St.George
The Castle Kitchens

Conwy
The History of the Castle
The Architecture

Norman Castles

Cardiff
History

Chepstow
History: Beginnings unto Bigod
History: From Edward II to the Tudors
History: Civil War, Restoration, and Aftermath

Manorbier
The Pleasantest Spot in Wales

Pembroke
Pembroke Pictures
The Caves Under the Castle

Welsh Castles

Criccieth
Llywelyn's Buildings
King Edward's Buildings


Baltic States and Poland

Towns along the Sea Coast
From Tallinn to Gdansk


Flanders / Belgium

Towns

Antwerp
The Old Town

Bruges
A Virtual Tour through Mediaeval Bruges

Ghent
A Virtual Tour through Mediaeval Ghent

Tongeren
Roman and Mediaeval Remains


Scandinavia

Norway

Castles and Fortresses

Defense over the Centuries
Akershus Fortress: Middle Ages
Akershus Fortress: Architectural Development
Vardøhus Fortress


Other Times

Ages of Stone and Bronze

Development of Civilization
European Bread Museum, Ebergötzen
Open Air Museum Oerlinghausen

From Stone to Bronze
Paleolithic Cave 'Steinkirche' in the Harz mountains
Gnisvärd Ship Setting on Gotland

Pre-Historical Orkney
Ring of Brodgar - Introduction
Ring of Brodgar - The Neolithic Landscape
Skara Brae
Life in Skara Brae


Post-Mediaeval

Thirty Years of War
The Vasa Museum in Stockholm

The Splendour of St.Petersburg
Isaac's Cathedral
Smolny Cathedral
Impressions from the The Neva River

Steampunk and Beyond
Fram Museum, Oslo, Part 1
Fram Museum Oslo, Part 2
Historical Guns
Raising a Wreck, Now and Then - The Vasa Museum
Vintage Car Museum, Wolfsburg


Tours and Cruises

Travelling in Germany
Hanseatic Towns at the Baltic Sea
At the Coast of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern
Quedlinburg and Surroundings
Halberstadt and Surroundings
In the Land of Saale and Unstrut
Interesting Sites in Thuringia
Some Castles in Thuringia (2017)
Teutoburg Forest and Paderborn
Towns, Castles and Churches in Bavaria
Summer Tours 2016

Travelling in the UK
Castles in Northumbria and Eastern Scotland
Abbeys and Churches in Northumbria
From Edinburgh to Oban - A Visit to Scotland
Neolithic, Pictish and Viking Remains on Orkney
Castles in Wales

Cruises
Cruise on the Baltic Sea
The Hurtigruten Tour / Norway


Beautiful Germany

The Baltic Sea Coast
From the Bay of Wismar to Hiddensee
The Flensburg Firth
A Tour on the Wakenitz River

Harz National Park
Arboretum (Bad Grund)
Bode Valley, Rosstrappe and Devil's Wall
Cave Dwellings in Langenstein
Harzburg and the Ilsetal
Oderteich Reservoir
Views from Harz mountains

Nature Park Meissner-Kaufunger Wald
Sea Stones, Kitzkammer, Heldrastein
'Hessian Switzerland'
Karst Dolines and Kalbe Lake

Nature Park Solling-Vogler
The Hutewald Forest
The Raised Bog Mecklenbruch

Rivers and Lakes
The Danube in Spring
Edersee Reservoir
A Rainy Rhine Cruise
River of the Greenest Shores - The Moselle
Vineyards at Saale and Unstrut

Parks and Palaces
Botanical Garden Göttingen
Forest Botanical Garden, Göttingen
Hardenberg Castle Gardens
Junkerberg Cemetary
Wilhelmsthal Palace and Gardens

Other Landscape Sites
Oberderdorla and Hainich National Park

Seasons and More

Spring
Spring on my Balcony
Spring at the Kiessee Lake
Spring in the Rossbach Heath

Summer
Memories of Summer
Summer Hiking Tours 2016
Summer Thunderstorms

Autumn
Autumnal Views from Castle Windows
Autumn Photos from Harz and Werra
Autumn in the Meissner
Autumn at Werra and Weser

Winter
Advent Impressions
Christmas Decorations from the Ore Mountains
Winter at the Kiessee Lake
Winter Wonderland
Winter 2010

Wildlife
Birds at the Feeder
Harz Falcon Park
Ozeaneum Stralsund: The Baltic Sea Life
Ozeaneum Stralsund: The North Sea Life

Experimental
Alien Architecture
Carved Monsters in Cathedrals
Llama, Llama
Odd Angles
Spectacular Sunset
Carved Animals


Across the Channel - United Kingdom

Mountains, Valleys, and Rivers
Sheep Grazing Among Roman Remains
A Ghost Cruise on the Ouse River
West Highland Railway

The East Coast
By Ferry to Newcastle
Highland Mountains - Inverness to John o'Groats
Some Photos from the East Coast

Scottish Sea Shores
Crossing to Mull
Mull - Craignure to Fionnphort
Pentland Firth
Staffa
Summer Days in Oban
Summer Nights in Oban

Wild Wales - With Castles
Hazy Views with Castles
Shadows and Strongholds
Views from Castle Battlements

Wildlife
Sea Gulls


Shores of History - The Baltic Sea

The Northern Coast
From Gotland to St.Petersburg

The South-Eastern Coast
Beaches at the Curonian Spit
From Tallinn to Gdansk


Land of Light and Darkness - Norway

The Hurtigruten-Tour
Along the Coast of Norway - Light and Darkness
Along the Coast - North of the Polar Circle
A Voyage into Winter
Culture and Nature in Norway
The Farthest North

Norway by Train
Winter in the Mountains

Wildlife
Bearded Seals
Dog Sledding With Huskies
Eagles and Gulls in the Trollfjord




Illustrated Essays about historical themes, events, and persons - mostly Roman and Mediaeval


Roman History

Wars and Frontiers

Maps
Romans in Germania

Traces of the Pre-Varus Conquest
Roman Camp Hedemünden
New Finds in 2008

The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest
Museum Park at Kalkriese

The Battle at the Harzhorn
Introduction

Along the Limes
Limes Fort Osterburken
Limes Fort Saalburg

Roman Frontiers in Britain
Hadrian's Wall

Rebellions
The Batavian Rebellion

Roman Militaria

Armour
Early Imperial Helmets
Late Roman Helmets
The Negau B Helmet

Weapons
The pilum
Daggers
Swords

Other Equipment
Roman Saddles

Life and Religion

Religion
The Mithras Cult
Isis Worship
Curse Tablets and Good Luck Charms

Everyday Life
Bathing Habits
Children's Toys
Face Pots
Styli and Wax Tablets

Public Life
Roman Transport - Barges
Roman Transport - Amphorae and Barrels
Roman Water Supply

Roman villae
Villa Rustica Wachenheim

Miscellaneous
Legend of Alaric's Burial


Mediaeval History

Feudalism
Feudalism, Beginnings
Feudalism, 10th Century
The Privilege of the deditio
A Note on handgenginn maðr

The Hanseatic League
Introduction and Beginnings
Stockfish Trade


Germany

Geneaologies

List of Mediaeval German Emperors

Geneaology
Anglo-German Marriage Connections
Heinrich the Lion's Ancestors

Biographies

Kings and Emperors
King Heinrich IV
Emperor Otto IV, Introduction

Princes
Otto the Quarrelsome of Braunschweig-Göttingen
The Dukes of Braunschweig-Grubenhagen
Otto of Northeim
The Ludowing Landgraves of Thuringia
Albrecht II and Friedrich I of Thuringia

Counts and Local Lords
The Marshals of Ebersburg
The Counts of Everstein
The Counts of Hohnstein
The Lords of Plesse
The Counts of Reichenbach
The Counts of Winzenburg

Famous Feuds

Local Feuds
The Lüneburg Succession War
The Thuringian Succession War - Introduction
The Star Wars

Royal Troubles
Otto IV and Bishop Adalbert II of Magdeburg


Scotland

Scottish Kings

House Dunkeld
Malcolm III and Northumbria
Struggle for the Throne: Malcolm III to David I
King David and the Civil War (1)
King David and the Civil War (2)

Houses Bruce and Stewart
Robert the Bruce and Stirling Castle
The Early Stewart Kings

Scottish Nobles and their Quarrels

Clan Feuds
MacLeans and MacDonalds
A Scottish Wedding


Wales

The Princes of Gwynedd
The Rise of House Aberffraw

The Rebellions
From Llywellyn ap Gruffudd to Owain Glyn Dŵr


Scandinavia

Kings of Norway
King Eirik's Scottish Marriages

Famous Nobles and their Feuds
Alv Erlingsson of Tønsberg

Post-Mediaeval

Explorers
Fram Expedition to the North Pole
Fram Expedition to the South Pole


Miscellanea

Maria Padilla - Mistress Royal
The Siege of Calais in Donizetti's Opera
Otto von Guericke


Geological Landscapes

The Baltic Sea
Geology of the Curonian Spit

The Harz
Karst Landscape
Karst - Lonau Falls
Karst - Rhume Springs

Meissner / Kaufunger Wald
Blue Dome near Eschwege
Diabase and Basalt Formations
Karst Formations

Solling-Vogler
Raised Bogs
The Hannover Cliffs

The Shores of Scotland
Staffa

Paleontology

Fossils
Ammonites


Novels in Progress / Planning

Roman Novels
(Historical Fiction)

The Saga of House Sichelstein
(Historical Fiction)

Kings and Rebels
(Fantasy)

Poetry Translations

Historical Ballads by Theodor Fontane
Archibald Douglas
Gorm Grymme
Sir Walter Scott in Abbotsford
The Tragedy of Afghanistan

Poems by Theodor Storm
From Heaven into Valleys Deep
The Grey Town By the Sea
The Seagull Flies Ashore Now

Other German Poems
Kästner, Progress of Mankind
Hebbel, Summer Picture
Rainer Maria Rilke, Autumn Day


Not So Serious Romans
Aelius Rufus Visits the Future Series
Building Hadrian's Wall
Playmobil Romans

Royal (Hi)Stories
Kings Having a Bad Hair Day
The Case of the Vanished Wine Cask

Historical Memes
Charlemagne meme
Historical Christmas Wishes
New Year Resolutions
Aelius Rufus does a Meme
Rules for Writing Scottish Romances

Funny Sights
Tourist Kitsch in St.Petersburg


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Links leading outside my blog will open in a new window. I do not take any responsibility for the content of linked sites.

History Blogs - Ancient

Roman History Today
Ancient Times (Mary Harrsch)
Bread and Circuses (Adrian Murdoch)
Following Hadrian (Carole Raddato)
Mike Anderson's Ancient History Blog
Mos Maiorum - Der römische Weg
Per Lineam Valli (M.C. Bishop)
Judith Weingarten

Digging Up Fun Stuff
The Anglo-Saxon Archaeology Blog
Arkeologi i Nord
The Journal of Antiquities (Britain)
The Northern Antiquarian
The Roman Archaeology Blog

History Blogs - Mediaeval

Þaér wæs Hearpan Swég
Anglo Saxon, Norse & Celtic Blog
Casting Light upon the Shadow (A. Whitehead)
Norse and Viking Ramblings
Outtakes of a Historical Novelist (Kim Rendfeld)

Beholden Ye Aulde Blogges
A Clerk of Oxford
Historical Britain Blog (Mercedes Rochelle)
Magistra et Mater (Rachel Stone)
Michelle of Heavenfield (Michelle Ziegler)
Senchus (Tim Clarkson)

Royal and Other Troubles
Edward II (Kathryn Warner)
Henry the Young King (Kasia Ogrodnik)
Piers Gaveston (Anerje)
Lady Despenser's Scribery
Simon de Montfort (Darren Baker)
Weaving the Tapestry (Scottish Houses Dunkeld and Stewart)

A Mixed Bag of History
English Historical Fiction Authors
The Freelance History Writer (Susan Abernethy)
The History Blog
History, the Interesting Bits (S.B. Connolly)
Mediaeval News (Niall O'Brian)
Time Present and Time Past (Mark Patton)

Thoughts and Images

Reading and Reviews
Black Gate Blog
The Blog That Time Forgot (Al Harron)
Parmenion Books
Reading the Past
The Wertzone

Imaginations
David Blixt
Ex Urbe (Ada Palmer)
Constance A. Brewer
Jenny Dolfen Illustrations
Wild and Wonderful (Caroline Gill)

Poets and Photographers (German Blogs)
Alte Steine (Burgdame Eva)
Durch Bücherstaub geblinzelt (Silberdistel)
Insel-Aus-Zeit (Carmen Wedeland)

German Travel Blogs
Good Morning World
Meerblog
Sonne und Wolken
Teilzeitreisender
Unterwegs und Daheim

Highland Mountains
The Hazel Tree (Jo Woolf)
Helen in Wales
Mountains and Sea Scotland

The Colours of the World
Shutterbugs


Research

Archaeology
Past Horizons
Archaeology in Europe
Orkneyar

Roman History
Deutsche Limeskommission
Internet Ancient Sourcebook
Livius.org
Roman Army
Roman Britain
The Romans in Britain
Vindolanda Tablets

Not so Dark Ages
Burgundians in the Mist
Viking Society for Northern Research

Mediaeval History
De Re Militari
Internet Mediaeval Sourcebook
Kulturzeit
The Labyrinth
Mediaeval Crusades
Medievalists.Net

Castles
Burgenarchiv
Burgenwelt
Exploring Castles
The World of Castles

Miscellaneous History
Heritage Daily
The History Files

Post-Mediaeval Sites
Vasa Museets Skeppsbloggen

Mythology
Ancient History
Encyclopedia Mythica

Online Journals
Ancient Warfare
The Heroic Age
The History Files

Travel and Guide Sites

Germany - History
Antike Stätten in Deutschland
Burgenarchiv
Strasse der Romanik

Germany - Nature
HarzLife
Naturpark Meissner
Naturpark Solling-Vogler

England
English Heritage
Visit Northumberland

Scotland
The Chain Mail (Scottish History)
Historic Scotland
National Trust Scotland

Books and Writing

Interesting Author Websites
Bernard Cornwell
Dorothy Dunnett
Steven Erikson
Diana Gabaldon
Guy Gavriel Kay
George R.R. Martin
Sharon Kay Penman
Brandon Sanderson
J.R.R. Tolkien
Tad Williams

Historical Fiction
Historical Novel Society
Historia Magazine

Writing Sites
Absolute Write
TheLitForum.com
National Novel Writing Month










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