The Brühl crosses the city centre of Leipzig in east-west orientation. It is also regarded the most important street of the old trade capital Leipzig. Here we see the western part of the Bruehl between Reichsstrasse (left, outside the panorama) and Hainstrasse (right) and its southside front. Central in the panorama the Romanushaus is situated, left of it the Katharinenstrasse leads south towards the old town hall (tower in the back) on Leipzigs’ market square. The opposite northside front of the Brühl is formed by the new commercial complex “Höfe am Brühl” nowadays. In this panorama the complex is still in construction as you can see in the foreground. So this view is now impossible for the time being.
What is the Bruehl today, once was a part of the imperial trade street Via Regia, which led towards Naumburg and Erfurt in western and Grimma and Görlitz in eastern direction. On the modern Richard-Wagner-Square (right, outside the panorama) where the Bruehl ends, the Via Regia crossed the second important imperial street Via Imperii. That square is supposed to have been the founding place of a slavic settling called Lipsk, which would become Leipzig later. The Bruehl itself became, over a period of centuries, an international trade centre for furs (german Felle/Rauchwaren). In the early 20th century the fur traders on the Bruehl dominated the worldwide market in a way, that speaking about the Brühl was less about the street itself, but using it as a synonym for fur trade in its entirety. Heavily destructed during WWII and cut off the global market by the Iron Curtain, the Bruehl is not playing a role in fur trade anymore, today.
This panorama visualizes that the street block between Katharinenstrasse and Hainstrasse partly consists of preserved old buildings, including an office building by Max Pommer on the right corner and the Romanushaus on the left corner. The area continuing towards Reichsstrasse was completely destroyed and part of the new Sachsenplatz until ca. 2000. Meanwhile the square bears the newly built museum for fine arts (Museums für bildende Künste/MdbK) which will be surrounded by four corner buildings in the future (also restricting the view we see here as well). Somewhat fitting, the museum presented a grand special exhibition on Leipzigs’ photographic history when this panorama was taken.
The Romanushaus is regarded a main work of the so called Leipzig Baroque Architecture, which was indeed inspired by baroque Dresden. This former town villa was errected between 1701 and 1704 and has been completely renovated during the 1990s. It is named after the former mayor of Leipzig Franz Conrad Romanus (1671-1746), who ordered its construction after plans of Johann Gregor Fuchs. Today a Hermes statue, probably created by Balthasar Permoser, stands in the niche beneath the corner bay.
Exactly this perspective, but this time showing the completed “Höfe am Brühl” complex, has meanwhile been finnsihed to form a part of our project visualizing a complete view of the Leipziger Ring (Leipzig city circle).