German Cathedral in Berlin
The German Cathedral in Berlin (Deutscher Dom) is a church located in the German capital, in the Friedrichstadt district.
Together with the French Cathedral and the Concert Hall, the German Cathedral is part of the holistic architectural composition of the Gendarmenmarkt square, one of the most famous and beautiful sights in the historic center of Berlin.
If, being on Gendarmenmarkt Square, you look at the Konzerthaus of Berlin, the German Cathedral will be on the left and the French Cathedral on the right.
German Cathedral Architecture
The German Cathedral was built by Martin Grünberg in 1708. It was originally called the New Church (Neue Kirche). Together with the French Cathedral located opposite, the German Cathedral forms a pair similar to the twin churches in Piazza del Popolo in Rome.
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At the end of the 18th century, both cathedrals received a beautiful baroque dome. Thanks to these domes, the churches received the name “Cathedral”, in German – “Dom”, derived from the French dôme – “Dome”. In the literal sense of the word, cathedrals, that is, the location of the bishop’s chair, both churches have never been.
The dome of the German Cathedral is 12 meters in diameter. At its top there is a gilded sculpture embodying the Virtue of the Swiss sculptor Heinrich Friedrich Kambly. The facade of the church is decorated with sculptural compositions illustrating the Gospel, made by the workshop of Constantin Philipp Sartori.
German Cathedral in Berlin on Google-panorama
Due to the similarity of names, confusion often occurs. Distinguish between the German Cathedral in Berlin (Deutscher Dom), which is discussed here (which is not a cathedral), and the Berlin Cathedral (Berliner Dom), located on Museum Island.
From the very beginning of its existence, the German Cathedral functioned as a joint church of two faiths – the German Reformed and Lutheran.
During World War II, the cathedral was completely destroyed. Restoration work was begun only in 1983. The grand opening of the restored German Cathedral took place only in 1996.
Since the restoration of the building, the German Cathedral is no longer used as a church. Since 1996, the Bundestag exhibition “Ways – Misconceptions – Detours” (“Wege – Irrwege – Umwege”), which tells about the history of the development of parliamentarism and democracy in Germany, has been housed here.
The exhibition in the German Cathedral is located on 6 levels:
level 1: Early German parliamentarism and the March revolution of 1848;
Level 2: Parliamentarism in the Kaiser Germany and the Weimar Republic;
level 3: Nazi Germany and propaganda in the GDR;
level 4: movie theater;
level 5: parliamentary architecture in Germany;
Level 6: History of the German Cathedral.
Mode of operation
The German Cathedral is open daily except Monday:
from Tuesday to Sunday from 10.00 to 18.00;
from May to September – from 10.00 to 19.00;
on holidays it works on Monday.
Films in the German Cathedral
Daily at 2 p.m. in the cinema on the 4th floor you can watch a documentary, admission is free.
In the period from 11.00. until 5 p.m. every half hour there are guided tours of the exhibition in German, English or French, participation is free.
For all comers, an audio guide in German, English and French is provided free of charge.
Information about the working hours on the official website
View of the German Cathedral from the western facade, © Manfred Brückels
How to get there
The German Cathedral is located in the very center of Berlin. It is convenient to reach by any means of transport, as well as walk.
By public transport
To get to the Deutsche Cathedral, you can use the metro, bus, city or regional train.