Lübeck’s famous landmark is one of Germany’s best-known monuments.
In medieval times, Lübeck owed its reputation as an important city to the success of its merchants. Holsten Gate became the proud symbol of Lübeck as a free imperial city.
The city gate was built between 1464 and 1478 along the lines of Dutch models. It served both as a form of defence and as a symbol of the city’s prestige. Above the round-arched gateway entrance of the twin-towered construction, the inscription CONCORDIA DOMI FORIS PAX (unity within, peace without) can clearly be seen in golden letters. Nearly every visitor is astonished by its odd tilt and sunken South tower. As only the towers stand separately on a foundation consisting of a wooden grid with the heavy middle tract also resting on them, the towers subsided unevenly into the marshy ground. In 1863, the Holsten Gate looked an appalling sight. By a majority of just one single vote, the city parliament decided to restore the gate and began extensive restoration efforts. It wasn't until 70 years later that the subsidence could be stopped.
In the interior of the Holsten Gate, a museum displays interesting material relating to the “Power of Trade”. Historic ship models, suits of armour, weapons, legal instruments and merchandise give a brief glimpse into the time of the Hanseatic League.