I have been leafing through Taschen’s gorgeous photographic atlas, Germany Around 1900. The volume catalogues the architectural heritage of the Kaiserreich in a series of enchanting photochrom prints. Looking through them one is struck with wonder (that such a beautiful world existed) and heartache (that it was destroyed).
Of course, many of the great civic buildings depicted in the book are still standing. Below are a selection of surviving landmarks as they appeared at the turn of the last century: Wernigerode Town Hall; the inner courtyard of Wartburg Castle, where Martin Luther translated the Bible; Neuschwanstein Castle (King Ludwig’s esoteric architectural homage to Wagner); Butchers’ Guild Hall in Hildesheim; and the Evangelical Cathedral in Berlin.