Architecture / Empire / Germany

Brandenburg Gate: Iconic neoclassical building in Berlin designed and built by Carl Gotthard Langhans (1732-1808) during the period 1789-94. His pioneering neoclassicism was further popularized by Karl Friedrich Schinkel (1781-1841).

The Gallic Empire makes Cologne their capital city.

The Roman emperor Constantius Chlorus allowed the Salian Franks to settle among the Batavi.

A bridge was constructed near Cologne.

The Catholic diocese of Cologne was founded.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Mainz was founded.

The Battle of Strasbourg took place.

366 January 2
The Alemanni forces invaded the Roman Empire by crossing the frozen Rhine.

King Chlodio of the Salian Franks died.
Chlodio’s son Merovech became king of the Salian Franks with the support of the Western Roman dux Flavius Aetius.

451 June 20
Battle of the Catalaunian Plains: The Franks joined a coalition led by the Western Roman Empire which defeated the Huns in modern northeastern France.

Merovech died. He was succeeded as king of the Salian Franks by his son Childeric I.

Battle of Orleans (463): The Salian Franks and forces loyal to the magister militum Aegidius defeated an attack by the Visigothic Kingdom at Orléans.

Childeric died. He was succeeded as king of the Salian Franks by his son Clovis I.

Battle of Soissons (486): An alliance of Franks led by Clovis defeated the Kingdom of Soissons. Syagrius, the king of Soissons and son of Aegidius, fled to the Visigothic Kingdom.

The Visigoths surrendered Syagrius to the Salian Franks to be executed.

Battle of Tolbiac: A Frankish force under Clovis defeated the Alemanni in modern Zülpich. The former credited his victory to Jesus.

Clovis was baptized Catholic at Reims.

Clovis commissioned the Salic Law, the first written code of civil law among the Franks. The law forbade women from inheriting land.

Battle of Vouillé: A Frankish force led by Clovis defeated the Visigothic Kingdom at Vouillé. The Visigothic king Alaric II was killed. Clovis annexed Aquitaine.[6]

Clovis was crowned king of the Franks with his capital at Paris.

First Council of Orléans: A synod of Catholic bishops called by Clovis at Orléans granted some legal powers and immunities to the Catholic Church.

Clovis died. His domain was split among his four sons Theuderic I, Chlodomer, Childebert I and Chlothar I the Old, who became kings ruling at Reims, Orléans, Paris, and Soissons, respectively.

524 June 25
Battle of Vézeronce: A Frankish invasion of Burgundy was halted near modern Vézeronce-Curtin. The Burgundian king Sigismund of Burgundy was captured and Chlodomer was killed.
Chlodomer’s wife Guntheuc married Chlothar.
Chlothar had two of Chlodomer’s sons killed. The third, Clodoald, fled to Provence.

Battle of the Unstrut River (531): Theuderic conquered the Thuringii near the Unstrut.

Battle of Autun: Childebert and Chlothar defeated Burgundy near Autun.

Theuderic died. His son Theudebert I inherited his throne.
The Burgundian king Godomar was killed by Frankish forces.
The pro-Byzantine regent of the Ostrogothic Kingdom, Amalasuntha, was murdered on the orders of her cousin and coregent Theodahad.
Gothic War (535–554): The Byzantine Empire invaded the Ostrogothic Kingdom.

Council of Clermont (535): A synod was held in modern Clermont-Ferrand which limited the rights of Catholic bishops to appeal to the state and which condemned marriage between Christians and Jews and between relatives.

Gothic War (535–554): Frankish forces under Theudebert I drove Byzantine and Ostrogothic armies from their encampments on the Po.
Gothic War (535–554): The Frankish army on the Po, suffering from dysentery, surrendered to the Byzantines.

Theudebert I died. His son Theudebald inherited his kingdom.

549 October
Fifth Council of Orléans: A synod presided over by Sacerdos of Lyon in Orléans condemned Nestorianism and simony.

Battle of the Volturnus (554): A Byzantine force cut off and destroyed a joint Frankish-Ostrogothic army at their camp on the Volturno.

Theudebald died, childless. His kingdom passed to Chlothar.

558 December 13
Childebert I died without male heirs. Chlothar inherited his kingdom.[7]

560 December
Conomor, king of Domnonée, who had allied with Chlothar’s son Chram against him, was killed in battle by Chlothar’s forces.

Chram was captured and executed.

Chlothar died of pneumonia. His kingdom was divided among his surviving sons Charibert I, Guntram, Sigebert I and Chilperic I.

Charibert I died. His kingdom was divided among his brothers Guntram, Chilperic I and Sigebert I, the latter of whose domains become known as Austrasia, the eastern land, with its capital at Metz.

Sigebert I died. He was succeeded by his young son Childebert II, with his wife Brunhilda of Austrasia acting as regent.

Guntram’s sons died of dysentery.

Chilperic I was stabbed to death. His infant son Chlothar II the Great, the Young inherited his kingdom under the regency of his mother Fredegund.

Guntram and Brunhilda agreed to the Treaty of Andelot, according to which the former adopted Childebert II as his son and heir.

Childebert II appointed Tassilo I of Bavaria king of Bavaria.

592 January 28
Guntram died. His kingdom passed to Childebert II.

Childebert II died. Austrasia was divided between his two sons Theudebert II and Theuderic II.

Theudebert II expelled Brunhilda from his kingdom.
Theuderic II declared war on Theudebert II.

The Duchy of Gascony was created as a buffer state against the Vascones and the Visigothic Kingdom.

Theuderic II captured Theudebert II in battle in modern Zülpich.
Theudebert II was killed in captivity along with his son on Brunhilda’s orders. Theuderic II inherited his kingdom as king of unified Austrasia.

Theuderic II died of dysentery. His young bastard son Sigebert II became king of Austrasia under the regency of Brunhilda.
Chlothar the Great invaded Austrasia. The Austrasian mayor of the palace Warnachar II recognized him as regent and ordered the army not to resist.
Brunhilda, Sigebert II and Sigebert’s brother were executed on Chlothar the Great’s orders. The latter annexed Austrasia.

614 October 18
Chlothar the Great issued the Edict of Paris. Among its provisions, the edict banned Jews from holding royal office and granted the nobility the exclusive power to appoint royal officers.

Chlothar the Great made the office of the mayor of the palace a lifetime appointment.

Chlothar the Great donated Austrasia to his son Dagobert I.
Dagobert I took Arnulf of Metz, the bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Metz, as an adviser and appointed the Austrasian noble Pepin of Landen his mayor of the palace.

629 October 18
Chlothar the Great died.
Dagobert I laid claim to Chlothar the Great’s territory with the exception of Aquitaine, which he left to his half-brother Charibert II.
Dagobert I dismissed Pepin of Landen as mayor of the palace.

Battle of Wogastisburg: An invading Frankish army was defeated by Samo’s Empire.
Dagobert I established the Duchy of Thuringia on the former territory of the Thuringii.

Charibert II was killed on the orders of Dagobert I.
Charibert II’s infant son Chilperic of Aquitaine was killed on the orders of Dagobert I, who established the Duchy of Aquitaine on his territories with the patrician Felix of Aquitaine as duke.
The nobility of Austrasia joined a revolt led by Pepin of Landen.

634 January
Dagobert I ceded Austrasia to his young son Sigebert III, with Adalgisel acting as coregent and mayor of the palace of Austrasia and the bishop Cunibert acting as coregent.

639 January 19
Dagobert I died. His kingdom passed to his young son Clovis II, with his wife Nanthild acting as regent.
Pepin of Landen replaced Adalgisel as mayor of the palace of Austrasia.

640 February 27
Pepin of Landen died.
Otto (mayor of the palace) was appointed mayor of the palace of Austrasia.

Otto was murdered by duke Leuthari II on the orders of Pepin of Landen’s son Grimoald the Elder, who succeeded him as mayor of the palace of Austrasia.

Synod of Rouen: A Catholic synod was held in Rouen which again condemned simony.

656 February 1
Sigebert III died. Grimoald the Elder tonsured Sigebert’s son Dagobert II and declared his own son Childebert the Adopted, whom Sigebert III had adopted while still childless, king of Austrasia.

657 November 27
Clovis II died. His kingdom passed to his young son Chlothar III, under the regency of his wife Balthild.

Chlothar III conquered Austrasia and executed Grimoald the Elder and Childebert the Adopted.

Chlothar III ceded Austrasia to his young brother Childeric II and appointed Wulfoald his regent and mayor of the palace.

Chlothar III died. His younger brother Theuderic III inherited his kingdom with the support of his mayor of the palace Ebroin.
Childeric II invaded and annexed Theuderic III’s kingdom.

Childeric II was killed along with his wife Bilichild and a son, Dagobert, by a conspiracy of nobles.
Theuderic III reclaimed his kingdom.
Clovis III became king of Austrasia.

Clovis III died.
Dagobert II became king of Austrasia with the support of Wulfoald.

679 December 23
Dagobert II was murdered, probably on Ebroin’s orders. Theuderic III inherited his kingdom.

Wulfoald died.
Pepin of Herstal, the son of Arnulf’s son Ansegisel and Pepin of Landen’s daughter Begga, became mayor of the palace of Austrasia.

Battle of Tertry: Austrasian forces loyal to Pepin of Herstal defeated the invading army of Theuderic III at modern Tertry, Somme. Pepin of Herstal accepted Theuderic’s unification of the Frankish kingdoms on the condition that he replace Berthar as his mayor of the palace.
Pepin of Herstal took the title Duke of the Franks.

Battle of Dorestad: A Frankish force conquered Dorestad from the Frisian Kingdom.

Theuderic III died. He was succeeded by his young son Clovis IV.

Clovis IV died. He was succeeded by his young brother Childebert III the Just.
Pepin of Herstal appointed his sons Drogo of Champagne and Grimoald the Younger mayors of the palaces in Neustria and Burgundy, respectively.

Drogo died.

711 April 23
Childebert the Just died. His young son Dagobert III succeeded him as king of the Franks.

Grimoald the Younger was assassinated.
16 December Pepin of Herstal died. His son Theudoald succeeded him as mayor of the palace of Austrasia and in the west, with his mother Plectrude as regent.

Dagobert III appointed Ragenfrid mayor of the palace in the west.
26 September Battle of Compiègne: Forces loyal to Ragenfrid defeated an army loyal to the young Theudoald, forcing him to flee to Cologne.
Pepin of Herstal’s illegitimate son Charles Martel was acclaimed mayor of the palace of Austrasia by the Austrasian nobility.
Dagobert III died. He was succeeded by Chilperic II, his cousin and a son of Childeric II.

Battle of Cologne: A Frisian army joined by the forces of Chilperic II conquered Cologne in Austrasia, forcing Charles to flee to the Eifel and compelling Plectrude to accept Chilperic II as king.
Battle of Amblève: Charles defeated the forces of Frisia and Chilperic II at Amel.

717 March 21
Battle of Vincy: Charles dealt Chilperic II a decisive defeat at modern Les Rues-des-Vignes and subsequently declared Chlothar IV king of Austrasia.

Battle of Soissons (718): Charles defeated the armies of Chilperic II and Aquitaine at Soissons. Chilperic II fled to Aquitaine.
Charles recognized Chilperic II as king of the Franks in exchange for his appointment as mayor of the palace with extensive powers.
Chlothar IV died.

Umayyad invasion of Gaul: The Umayyad Caliphate conquered Narbonne.

721 February 13
Chilperic II died. He was succeeded by Dagobert III’s son Theuderic IV.
Battle of Toulouse (721): An Aquitainian force broke an Umayyad siege of Toulouse.

Battle of the River Garonne: An Umayyad army wiped out an Aquitainian force on the Garonne.

Battle of Tours: Charles, joined by the Duchy of Aquitaine and the Kingdom of the Lombards, dealt a decisive defeat to the Umayyad Caliphate near modern Vouneuil-sur-Vienne. Abdul Rahman Al Ghafiqi, the Umayyad governor of al-Andalus, was killed.

Battle of the Boarn: A Frankish army led by Charles defeated and annexed the Frisian Kingdom and killed its king, Bubo, Duke of the Frisians.

Battle of Nîmes: Charles destroyed the Umayyad Septimanian cities of Nîmes, Agde, Béziers and what is now Villeneuve-lès-Maguelone.

Battle of Avignon: Charles breached and burned the Umayyad-held city of Avignon.
Battle of Narbonne (737): Charles besieged but failed to capture the Umayyad-held city of Narbonne.
Battle of the River Berre: Charles intercepted and destroyed an Umayyad army sent to relieve his siege of Narbonne near the Étang de Berre.
Theuderic IV died. Charles prevented his succession.

Charles divided his lands between his two elder sons Carloman and Pepin the Short, the former ruling as king in the east and the latter in the west.

741 October 22
Charles died.

742 April 21
Concilium Germanicum: A synod called by Carloman and presided over by Saint Boniface settled some issues of Catholic ritual and organization. The Rule of Saint Benedict became mandatory in Frankish monasteries.

Childeric III was appointed king of the Franks.

Council of Cannstatt: Carloman executed the Alemanni nobility, numbering in the thousands, in modern Stuttgart.

747 August 15
Carloman retired to live as a monk in Rome. His son Drogo succeeded him as mayor of the palace.

751 March
The pope Pope Zachary deposed Childeric III as king of the Franks at the urging of Pepin the Short.
An assembly of Frankish nobles elected Pepin the Short king.

Siege of Narbonne (752–59): Pepin the Short laid siege to Narbonne, still held by forces loyal to Yusuf ibn ‘Abd al-Rahman al-Fihri, governor of Al-Andalus under the defunct Umayyad Caliphate.

Drogo was tonsured and forced to live in a monastery.

Pepin the Short closed or nationalized the private mints and fixed pence and shillings to the silver French denier.

Pepin the Short gave the Donation of Pepin, territories ceded by the Kingdom of the Lombards under military pressure, to the pope, Pope Stephen II.

Siege of Narbonne (752–59): The defenders of Narbonne opened the city gates to the Franks.

768 September 24
Pepin the Short died. His kingdom was divided between his sons Charlemagne and Carloman I, with the latter receiving territories including the Paris Basin, the Massif Central, Provence, southern Austrasia and Alsace.

Charlemagne rules as King of the Franks and is crowned as Holy Roman Emperor

Formation of the duchies of Franconia, Saxony, Bavaria and Lorraine

919 – 1024
The Saxon dynasty rule Germany

The Salian dynasty rules the Germans

First Crusade ( The People’s Crusade). Jerusalem is re-taken from the Muslims on the urging of Pope Urban II. 1st Crusade led by Count Raymond IV of Toulouse and proclaimed by many wandering preachers, notably Peter the Hermit

The Knights Templar founded to protect Jerusalem and European pilgrims on their journey to the city

1138 -1254
The Hohenstaufen dynasty

Second Crusade led by Holy Roman Emperor Conrad III and by King Louis VII of France

Third Crusade 3rd Crusade led by Richard the Lionheart of England, Philip II of France, and Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I. Saladin manages to unite the Muslim world and recapture Jerusalem, sparking the fourth Crusade

Fourth Crusade and the French/Flemish advanced on Constantinople but the Christians fail to recapture Jerusalem

The Children’s Crusade led by a French peasant boy, Stephen of Cloyes

Other crusades follow including the eighth crusade led by Louis IX of France – but the armies still fail to capture Jerusalem

Rudolf of Hapsburg crowned king of the Germans

The Black Death ravages Europe for the first of many times. An estimated one third of the population is thought to have perished within the first year

Switzerland breaks away from the German empire

Martin Luther initiates the Reformation

Emperor Charles V defeats the Protestant princes and allies

The Peace of Augsburg where the princes determine the religion of their territories

1618 – 1648
The Thirty Years War ending with the Peace of Westphalia

Frederick crowned the first king of Prussia

1740 – 1748: The War of Austrian Succession

The Confederation of the Rhine was established by Napoleon Bonaparte

Prussia declared war on France and was defeated by Napoleon Bonaparte

The Prussians helped defeat Napoleon Bonaparte at Leipzig

Congress of Vienna establishes the German Confederation of 39 independent German states

Napoleon was defeated at Waterloo

Otto von Bismarck appointed prime minister of Prussia

Franco-Prussian War

1871 January
Germany captures Paris

Dukes of Prussia

Albert I (1525-1568)
Albert II Frederick (1568-1618)
John Sigismund (1618-1619)
George William (1619-1640)
Frederick William (1640-1688)
Friedrich I * – became first King in Prussia in 1701 (1688-1701)

Kings of Prussia (known as Kings In Prussia until 1772)
Friedrich I (1701-1713)
Friedrich Wilhelm I (1713-1740)
Friedrich II (Frederick The Great) (1740-1786)
Friedrich Wilhelm II (1786-1797)
Friedrich Wilhelm III (1797-1840)
Friedrich Wilhelm IV (1840-1861)
Wilhelm I (1861-1888) – became first German Emperor (Kaiser) in 1871


Dukes of Bavaria
Albert IV (1503–1508)
William IV (1508–1550) 
Louis X jointly held with William IV (1516–1545)
Albert V (1550–1579)
William V (1579-1597)
Maximilian I (1597-1623)

Electors of Bavaria, 1623-1805
Maximilian I 1623-1651

Elector Maximilian I of Bavaria was raised to Electoral Status, gaining the seat of the Elector Palatine, who had been put under the ban of the Empire.


Ferdinand Maria 1651-1679
Maximilian II Emanuel 1679-1726
Charles Albert 1726-1745 (Holy Roman Emperor, as Charles VII 1742–1745)
Maximilian III Joseph 1745-1777
Charles Theodore 1777-1799 (Elector Palatine from 1743)
Maximilian IV Joseph 1799-1805 (Duke of Zweibrücken from 1795)

Kings of Bavaria, 1805-1918
Maximilian I Joseph 1805-1825

Bavaria became a kingdom, and Elector Maximilian IV became King Maximilian I.

Ludwig I Augustus 1825-1848 (d.1868)

glyptothek: A building for the exhibition of sculpture; the term being introduced as the name of the building erected by the care of Ludwig I of Bavaria, 1825-1848, while still crown prince. The immediate purpose was to provide a home for the sculptures brought from the Temple of Aegina.

Maximilian II 1848-1864
Ludwig II 1864-1886
Otto 1886-1913 (d.1916)
Prince Luitpold of Bavaria, Regent 1886-1912
Prince Ludwig of Bavaria, Regent 1912-1913
Ludwig III 1913-1918


Kaisers of the German Empire
William I (of Prussia) 1871–88

1871 January 18
Wilhelm I was crowned the first Kaiser of the German Empire uniting all of the German states

Frederick III 1888
William II 1888–1918

AEG Turbine Factory: Iconic example of early modernist architecture designed by Peter Behrens (1868-1940), who was also noted for his pupils Walter Gropius, Le Corbusier and Mies van der Rohe.

motorway: Class of highway with two or more lanes in each direction, designed and regulated for fast motor-traffic only. The German super-highway concept dates from 1911…

Der Sturm: Literally ‘The Assault’ or ‘The Storm’, title of a Berlin art-gallery (1912-14) and journal (1910-32) devoted to the avant-garde in Germany, founded by Herwarth Walden (1878-1941). Through Der Sturm Futurism and Expressionism were promoted.

1914 June 28
Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary and his wife were assassinated in Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina provoking World War I
August: Germany declares war on Russia and France. The United Kingdom declares war on Germany
1918 November 9
Germany was declared a republic

1918 November 11
The Treaty of Versailles ends World War I and the Rhineland was placed under Allied occupation for 15 years

1919 January 19
A national assembly meets in Weimar to write a new German Constitution – called the Weimar Republic

Presidents of the Weimar Republic

Friedrich Ebert 1919–25

Novembergruppe: Association of Left-wing German artists and architects founded immediately after their nation’s defeat in the 1914-18 war…

Gläserne Kette: German group founded by Bruno Taut, including Gropius and Scharoun, favoring forms derived from crystals, shells, and plants, using glass, steel, and concrete. Several members later jointed the Ring.

Arbeitstrat fur Kunst: Group of German architects founded by Bruno Taut, including Otto Bartning, Walter Gropius, Erich Mendelsohn, and Max Taut. Gropius took over leadership in 1919 and when he moved to the Weimar Bauhaus, the program there reflected the groups ideals; a fusion of the arts under the wing of architecture.

Bauhaus: An influential German design school established by Walter Gropius in 1919 that sought to combine art, industrial technology, and crafts into a theory of functional design, particularly in architecture.

Deutscher Werkbund: Architecture and applied art organization in Germany set up by Hermann Muthesius (1861-1927).

Miesian: Architecture in the manner of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (1886-1969), a German architect noted for rational, austere designs devoid of any ornament.

Neue Sachlichkeit: Term coined (1923) to describe so-called ‘Noew Objectivity’ in art/architecture, especially in the German Weimar Republic. Reacting to Expressionism, it was associated with the development of Rationalism and the International-Modernist style.

Neues Bauen: Avant-garde architecture in German-speaking countries (1920s and 1930s), originally associated with Arbeitstrat für Kunst…

Jugendstil: Called “Youth style”; the German version of Art Nouveau.

The National Socialist German Workers Party (Nazis) attempt an unsuccessful armed rebellion led by Adolf Hitler

Paul von Hindenburg 1925–33

Der Block: Group of German traditionalist architects formed (1928) to resist the Modernist Ring group…


Leaders of the Third Reich (National Socialist regime)
Paul von Hindenburg* 1934

Upon Hindenburg’s death in 1934, the powers of the presidency were merged with those of the chancellor.

Adolf Hitler** 1933–45

Nazi architecture: Architecture of the Hitlerian Third Reich in Germany (1933-45), basically of three types: a stripped Neo-Classicism, as in works by Kreis and Speer; a vernacular style drawing on rural and especially Alpine types; and a simple, utilitarian, industrialized type for factories…

Totalitarian architecture: Supposedly the officially approved architecture of dictatorships, over-centralized governments, or political groups intolerant of opposition, especially that of Fascist Italy, Nazi Germany, Stalinist Soviet Union, Communist China, etc. As an international style, it often drew on simplified Neo-Classicism, and sculpture based on 19th c. realism and Classicism for massive over-sized State monuments.

Hindenburg appoints Adolf Hitler as the chancellor and Nazi Germany begin persecuting Jews

Adolf Hitler declared himself der Fuhrer. The Nazi German government is called the Third Reich

1938 April 10
Germany annexes Austria

1939 March 16
Germany occupies Czechoslovakia

1939 September 1
Germany invades Poland starting World War 2

Germany captures Denmark, Norway, the Netherlands, Belgium, France and Luxembourg. The Allies including Russia, UK and USA retaliate

1945 April 30
Adolf Hitler commits suicide
August: The United States dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki
7 May: Germany surrenders
June: Germany divided into four zones of military occupation (United States, the United Kingdom, France, and the Soviet Union)

Chancellors of the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany)
Konrad Adenauer 1949–63

1949 May
The Allies approve a constitution for western Germany (Federal Republic of Germany) and East Germany adopts a Communist-prepared constitution
October – The German Democratic Republic was formed (East Germany)

1955 May 5
West Germany obtains independence

1961 August
The Berlin Wall was built

Ludwig Erhard 1963–66
Kurt Georg Kiesinger 1966–69
Willy Brandt 1969–74
Helmut Schmidt 1974–82
Helmut Kohl 1982–90

1989 November 9
The Berlin Wall demolished and Communist East Germans were able to travel to the West of Germany

1990 October 3
East and West Germany was reunited.

First (or General) Secretaries of the Socialist Unity Party of the German Democratic Republic (East Germany)

Sixteen Principles of Urbanism: Agreed with Moscow (1948), the Principles were drawn up in Communist East Germany as a radical alternative to the Le Corbusier-CIAM-Athens Charter dogmas so widely accepted in the West after 1945. Among the Principles were the rejection of urban motorways cutting swaths through the urban fabric, the abandonment of zoning that played havoc in Western cities, and the reestablishment of the urban block and traditional street as essentials, all of which were reassessed at the end of the 20th c. as part of New Urbanism.

Walter Ulbricht 1950–71
Erich Honecker 1971–89
Egon Krenz 1989

East Germany was governed by interim administrations from December 1989 until the two Germanys were reunited in October 1990.

Chancellors of the Federal Republic of Germany (reunited Germany)
Helmut Kohl 1990–98
Gerhard Schröder 1998–2005
Angela Merkel 2005–


Also see Architecture index.



Leaders of Germany, Encyclopaedia Brittanica

Rulers of Bavaria

Timeline of German History, Wikipedia

Timeline of Germany, Dates and Events

Rulers of Prussia, Unofficial Royalty