Lübeck, the Queen of the Hanseatic League, was founded in 1143 “as the first occidental City at the Baltic Coast” and stands for an exemplary character for all Hanseatic Cities of the Baltic provinces. Mediaeval ambience and historic sites determine until today the cityscape and are remembrances of the important history as a Free- and Hanseatic City. During its 11th conference from December 7th – 11th, 1987, the International UNESCO-World Heritage Commission incorporated the Old Town as world culture heritage in its register.
With Lübeck, it was the first time in history that an Old Town of the Federal Republic of Germany was officially declared a cultural monument. Even the archaeological underground with its nearly 3 million findings forms part of the world heritage as it documents the importance of the city for the settlement history. Thus, on the town hill a several centuries old Slavic settlement structure with castle settlement was discovered. Every cut of the spade leads straight into the history of Lübeck.
In the Hanseatic city witnesses of the past come to light, e.g. the wooden doll that fell in the cesspit around 1300, the stylus of the student who brooded over his tasks in school at St. Jacob’s church around 1370, and many more. More than 1,000 listed houses, numerous courtyards and corridors of the Middle Ages and some monumental buildings are witnesses of earlier times.
With unforgettable views of the extensive docks, the picturesque cathedral district and the green remnants of the city wall, it’s easy to see why Lübeck's Old Town was awarded the title. Being a UNESCO-World Heritage Site is not only an honour but also an obligation to focus on the preservation, protection and maintenance of the Old Town.
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