The Golden Age of classicism: a return to antiquity
The houses and palaces of neo-classicism display the same straight lines and absence of embellishment as the ancient Greek temples. In Classical Weimar, a UNESCO World Heritage ensemble, the influence of Goethe is everywhere to be seen.
In 1790, the Landgraves and Grand Dukes of Hessen-Darmstadt had the 'Fürstenlager' built as their summer residence. It was located in an idyllic little valley amid the Odenwald forest in Auerbach near Bensheim. Particularly impressive are the surrounding buildings that have survived almost completely intact.
Greiz Summer Palace
Built in the early classical style in 1769, this summer palace in Greiz is home to a wonderful collection of historical engravings. It was commissioned by Prince Heinrich XI (1722-1800), who had the pediment inscribed with the words Maison de belle retrait – house of beautiful retreat .
In 1789, under the influence of Goethe, Duke Carl August of Saxe-Weimar gave the order to rebuild Weimar Palace in the neo-classical style. The park on the Ilm, a leafy retreat covering almost 50 hectares, also dates back to this time.