your royal tour of germany
The Veste Coburg fortress was first mentioned in a document in 1056. The so called “Fränkische Krone - Franconian Crown” is visible from afar. With its massive walls and towers, it’s Coburg’s most important landmark. On a nice day, you can enjoy stunning views into all directions. The Veste fortress also houses several internationally-acclaimed art collections – such as a print room, precious Venetian glass, historic weapons, the worldwide oldest carriages and baroque sledges and famous oeuvres of Old German art works – among others of Cranach, Dürer and Grünewald.
The Veste Coburg fortress is called “the Franconian Crown” not only because of its dominating location, but also due to its mighty structure with its towers, walls, and ramparts. For centuries it was the residence of rulers, and also had numerous historically significant guests with Martin Luther being the most famous one. He sought refuge here for nearly six months in 1530. At the beginning of the 20th century the castle was the residence of Duke Carl-Eduard of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, a grandson of Queen Victoria.
The Veste Coburg fortress is also a very important art centre, as it is home to the private collections of the dukes of Coburg. The collections are today housed over an area of 4,000m² in the fortress’s three interconnected historical wings. In the “Steinerne Kemenate”, you will find the Luther Room, the Hunting Room with its marquetry dating back to 1632, the Great Court Banqueting Hall, and a collection of pictures by old German masters from the time of Dürer, including paintings by Lucas Cranach the Elder. One of the most important international collections of its kind is the glass collection housed in the Carl-Eduard wing of the fortress. Venetian glass (15th to 18th century), colourfully painted enamelled glassware (16th to 18th century), cut-glass chalices (17th and 18th century), as well as decorative glassware from the Art Niveau period are all on display here. Contemporary glass art from around the world is exhibited at the Museum of Modern Glass Art near Rosenau Castle. Collections of objects made from ceramic, pewter, porcelain, and faience can also be found in the Carl-Eduard wing. The collection of copperplate engravings consists of about 330,000 sheets of graphic art prints and 5,000 drawings and is one of the world’s most important graphic collections. The “Herzoginbau” (Duchess’s building) houses the collection of historical weapons, as well as magnificent carriages, including the oldest stagecoach still in working order in Europe. Sledges dating back to the 16th to 18th centuries are also on show in this wing.
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