The Zwinger Castle, located in Dresden, the capital city of the Free State of Saxony in Germany is a famous palace built during the reign of Frederick Augustus I.
After becoming King of Poland in 1697, Frederick Augustus I wanted to mark his triumph by making a spectacular monument, similar to the Palace of Versailles. He assigned the task to his court architect, Matthaus Daniel Poppelmann, who was thus responsible with designing the initial plans for the construction of the building. The building process itself took place during the period 1710 – 1728, in several different stages. On the occasion of the electoral prince Frederick August’s marriage to the daughter of the Habsburg emperor, the Archduchess, Maria Josepha of Austria, the Zwinger Castle was officially inaugurated and yest it was not finalized until the year 1728, the structure was able to function as an exhibition gallery and as a library hall. Following the death of Augustus, which took place in 1733, the restructuring process was temporary stopped due to insufficient financial resources, that had to be found somewhere else. German professor of architecture Gottfried Semper was later in charge of designing the Saxon State Opera Dresden, that at present is separated from the Zwinger by a the gallery wing. The architectural style illustrates many of the concepts and ideas of the German Baroque style.
During the Second World War, a military bombing raid by the British Royal Air Force (RAF) caused the almost complete destruction of the palace, but fortunately the art collection had been previously moved and was thus saved. After the end of the war a local referendum took place in order to determine the faith of the Zwinger Castle and the wish of the people proved to be that of restoring the structure.
Today, the Zwinger Castle is a legacy of Dresden’s distinguished history and an important local touristic attraction.
Photos of Zwinger Palace
Photos via wikipedia.org