“A beautiful gable adorns the house” – The Prinzipalmarkt in Münster
According to the North Frisian proverb, the streets of Münster’s Prinzipalmarkt (principal market) are adorned by richly developed gabled houses. With a view to the east, the panorama shown here leads us along historic shops such as the fashion house Petzhold, the Stadtweinhaus, the Historical City Hall, Haus Ostendorff and the Stadthausturm. Especially at night, the plasticity of the facades reaches its climax through the play of light and shadow. For pedestrians there are open halls on the ground floor, which date back to the thirteenth century. It is reminiscent of the arcades of Andrea Palladio’s Renaissance villas. However, it is not the view into the landscape that is in the foreground here, but rather the strolling and protected progress along the shops. Here the passer-by can diffuse from the hustle and bustle of street life into the quieter atmosphere of the columned corridors. In addition to the fine gothic façade of the City Hall, the Stadtweinhaus stands out with its freely projecting balcony. Here the judges’ verdicts were announced to the public. Despite the massive destruction of the old town during the second World War, the houses were reconstructed from the ruins. The gables of the Stadtweinhaus and the City Hall were restored with the filigree decorative elements of the Baroque and Renaissance periods. In the other houses these elements were replaced by sharp-edged triangular and stepped gables.
Historical Town Hall
Münster’s Historic City Hall is one of the city’s landmarks. The first town hall was built on this site around the middle of the 12th century, the magnificent gabled façade was added to the City Hall around 1395. Münster and its City Hall became particularly important due to the Peace of Westphalia which was signed here and in Osnabrück in 1648 and ended the Thirty Years’ War. The large council and court chamber in the historic City Hall was later renamed the Friedenssaal (peace hall). In 2015 the City Hall, together with the one in Osnabrück, was awarded the European Heritage Seal.
This nightview of the Prinzipalmarkt in Münster was presented in week 34 of our 101 weeks 101 cities of europe project.