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Truly romantic: the world-famous ruins

Heidelberg Palace

Ansicht des Friedrichsbaus von Schloss Heidelberg; Foto: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Achim Mende
Domesticity with a view

The Friedrich Building

The Friedrich Building is one of the most interesting residential palaces at Heidelberg Palace. It entices visitors with a lavishly decorated facade and palace chapel. The Great Terrace offers a fantastic view of Heidelberg's historic district.

View of the Friedrich Building at Heidelberg Palace. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Julia Haseloff

The courtyard facade of the Friedrich Building.

Majestic attention-getter

Upon entering the palace courtyard, the majestic Friedrich Building immediately catches visitors' eye. Prince-Elector Friedrich IV had the stately residential palace built by his architect, Johannes Schoch, between 1601 and 1607, on the pedestal of a previous medieval structure. The electoral family lived on the two top floors. The attic floor was reserved for the servants. In 1693, the Friedrich Building was significantly damaged; it burned out in 1764.

Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Mike Niederauer

Prince-Elector Friedrich IV.

Facade stones that "speak"

The structure's builder, Friedrich IV, who ruled between 1583 and 1610, also let the stones of the facade "speak," much like those on the Ottheinrich Building. An idealized gallery of ancestors from the electoral family were used to demonstrate his claim to power. Thus, visitors can also see a depiction of Friedrich IV, as the final representative of his illustrious ancestral line, reaching back to Charlemagne.

Reconstruction around 1900

Charles de Graimberg had established a small makeshift museum in the Friedrich Building in 1850. The Baden government commissioned architect Carl Schäfer (1844–1908) with restoring the former state rooms in 1893. The building was outfitted with a new transverse gable roof. Regional artists created the lavishly ornamented wooden ceilings, door trim and floors based on the Renaissance style. Today, palace tours explore these renovated rooms.

Ansicht eines Raums im Friedrichsbau von Schloss Heidelberg; Foto: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Arnim Weischer
Ansicht des Flurs im Friedrichsbau von Schloss Heidelberg; Foto: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Andrea Rachele
Ansicht eines Raums im Friedrichsbau von Schloss Heidelberg; Foto: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Arnim Weischer

Grandly decorated rooms in the Friedrich Building.

Interior of the palace chapel in the Friedrich Building at Heidelberg Palace. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, credit unknown

View of the altar in the palace chapel.

Romantic palace chapel

Heidelberg has had a palace chapel since the High Middle Ages. The palace chapel on the ground floor of the Friedrich Building was reconstructed by Friedrich V, along with the rest of the building. The previous structure recorded on this site was torn down. The ornate boxes and the altar are from the 18th century. The palace chapel can be viewed as part of palace tours and is a favorite for weddings.

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