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Deutsches Romantik-Museum

Deutsches Romantik-Museum
Romantik Museum, Frankfurt, 3 Häuser.jpg
Three-fold facade with Blauer Erker
LocationGroßer Hirschgraben 21
TypeCulture museum
Entrance of the museum

The Deutsches Romantik-Museum in the city centre of Frankfurt, Hesse, Germany, is a museum dedicated to the era of Romanticism. It is located next to the Goethe House and also integrates with it. Open since 14 September 2021, it houses a collection of manuscripts, letters, works of fine art, porcelain, and other items related to German Romanticism, which Freies Deutsches Hochstift has accumulated since 1911. The new building is part of the Goethehöfe complex next to the Goethe House. It is the first museum of its kind, focusing on major achievements during the entire Romantic era, rather than only on a specific region or individual.


Freies Deutsches Hochstift, founded in 1859 as an educational association, acquired the Goethe House in 1863 and started its collection of Romantic material in 1911. Ernst Beutler [de], the Hochstift’s director from 1925 to 1960, acquired further collections including manuscripts by Achim and Bettine von Arnim and Novalis. Beutler wanted to open a museum to display them in the house of the Brentano family [de] in Große Sandgasse, but that building was destroyed by bombing in World War II.

The departure of the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels from the building Großer Hirschgraben 17–21 in 2012 presented the opportunity to use the property next to the Goethe House. From the beginning, the Goethe House was to be incorporated into the site. When the city of Frankfurt withdrew from financing the project, the art dealer Karsten Greve donated 1 million Euro towards the building.

An architecture competition was initiated in October 2013, called Goethehöfe [de], with 15 groups invited to participate. In June 2014, three of them were awarded second prizes with the request to finish their proposals within two months. On 24 September 2014, the jury decided to combine two designs, giving the courts to the Landes & Partner [de], and the new museum building to Christoph Mäckler [de].

Building began on 13 June 2016. The museum opened on 14 September 2021, featuring paintings by Caspar David Friedrich (Der Abendstern) and other Romantic painters as part of the permanent exhibition. Manuscripts and letters are featured prominently within the museum. The inner court has a garden. The museum is unique in its focus spanning the Romantic era as a whole and holds the largest collection related to German Romanticism worldwide.


Architect Christoph Mäckler had to solve the problem of designing a building for exhibits which required protection from exposure to light, while avoiding the creation of a windowless facade next to the historic Goethe House. His facade looks like three houses, each with one large window and an entrance; behind it, he positioned a straight staircase over three floors, shielding the exhibition rooms behind it from daylight. The stairs are called Himmelstreppe ("stairway to heaven") because they appear "endless" through an optical illusion. The colour blue, symbolising the Blaue Blume of the Romantic era, dominates there and is used for other accents such as the Blauer Erker, a bay towards the street with windows of blue glass. The architecture of the new building has been described as "spectacular", while the stairway to heaven has been called "a work of art in its own right". The third floor offers an exceptional view of Frankfurt, making the Paulskirche, the Cathedral, and the European Central Bank appear as though they are neighbours.


Coordinates: 50°06′39″N 8°40′39″E / 50.110932°N 8.677505°E / 50.110932; 8.677505

This page was last updated at 2022-07-30 12:39 UTC. Update now. View original page.

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