Il Berlin Cathedral, in German Berliner Dom, is the cathedral of the city. It is located on Museum Island, in the Mitte district, and its main entrance overlooks the Lustgarten park. The building, however, is not a cathedral in the strict sense, as it has never been a bishopric: the bishopric of the Evangelical Church of Berlin-Brandenburg is located at the Marienkirche, the church located next to the television tower in Alexanderplatz.
The first church built on this land dates from the mid-18th century, but the current building dates from 1905. It was inaugurated on February 27 of the same year, and at the time cost an astonishing sum 11,5 million German marks. At 114 meters long, 73 meters wide and 116 meters high, the Berlin Cathedral at the time was far larger than any other building in the city, and was regarded as the Protestant alternative to St. Peter's Basilica in the Vatican. .
The destruction of the war
From the 1940 Berlin cathedral lived its dark period: the allied bombings destroyed part of the windows, while on 24 May 1944 a bomb fell on the lantern placed on the roof of the cathedral which caused a fire, which could not be tamed due to the impossibility of approaching it, causing the collapse of the roof. In the following years, a temporary roof was built to protect the building from the elements.
In 1975 began the reconstruction work on the Berlin Cathedral, simplifying the original project and demolishing the north wing, where the memorial church was located. Compared to other buildings in the city, this church survived the war completely intact, but incredibly it was destroyed for purely ideological reasons by the communist government as it housed the ceremonies of the Prussian royal family Hohenzollern. The government also requested the removal of as many crosses as possible.
In 1980 the baptistery and the wedding chapel, while the works for the renovation of the nave lasted from 1984 to 1993, the year in which the new inauguration of the Berlin Cathedral took place, held by Federal Chancellor Helmut Kohl and shown on national television in Germany.
The Berlin Cathedral has a structure a Greek cross, and its interior is exquisitely stuccoed and decorated. L'high altar it is the work of Friedrich August Stuler and comes from the old cathedral; on its sides there are two baroque chandeliers.
Le stained glass windows of the Berlin cathedral, painted by Anton von Werner, depict the life of Jesus from birth to death, while the dome is decorated with mosaics depicting scenes from the Bible, in the center of which is a stained glass window depicting the dove of the Holy Spirit.
The cathedral also preserves two pipe organs:
- Sauer organ: located to the left of the altar, this organ was built in 1905 by Wilhelm Sauer, and was only renovated in 2006.
- Schuke organ: it is located inside the chapel of baptism and marriage, and its construction dates back to 1946. It was built by the firm Alexander Schuke Potsdam Orgelbau.
La crypt of the Berlin cathedral it houses the tombs of the Prussian royal family Hohenzollern. Here rest, among others, Frederick I and his wife Sophie Charlotte, inside a sarcophagus by Andreas Schluter, and John I of Brandenburg, whose sarcophagus dates back to 1530 and is the work of the sculptor Peter Vischer the Elder.