The name of the Wendish Tower derives from the Sorbian (Wendish) settlement that was located in the area of today's Wendische Straße north of the German craftsmen's settlement (on Reichenstraße) in the early Middle Ages. The quadrangular substructure was built around the same time as the Lauenturm and the substructure of the student tower, i.e. at the beginning of the 15th century. The round superstructure was built between 1478 and 1492 at the same time as the lower part of the Reichenturm. In 1566 the wooden and slate-covered pinnacle, which had been damaged by a storm, was replaced with a stone crown. In 1663 the city temporarily relocated the debtor's prison to the Wendish Tower.
In 1834 the adjoining Wendisches Tor was removed. In 1841, the tower was also to be demolished, since new barracks were to be built here, since the many soldiers in Bautzen, which was slowly developing into a garrison town, had lived in normal apartments until then. The building design was submitted by a certain Oberleutnant Kimmel, who took no account of the existing building structures and the medieval town. The citizens therefore called on Gottfried Semper for help. He not only included the tower in his new plans, but also designed the barracks for 350 soldiers in the medieval style of the tower and the old city wall. This rescue operation was by no means typical for large parts of Germany at the time and represents an early form of monument protection. The tax office has used this building since 1933. After intermittent interruptions, this authority returned to the old barracks in July 1990. An exterior restoration of the tower took place in 1992.
November 18, 2021
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