Market Square and Old Town Hall, Leipzig

Market Square and Old Town Hall, Leipzig (must see)

The Market Square of Leipzig is the central place of Leigzip's city center. There are arcades and courtyards well worth a visit, and the Old Town Hall housing the City History Museum is the central attraction. St Nicholas and St Thomas Churches are easily reached from here.

Throughout the year, the square is the venue of a diversity of Markets and events. There is the Easter Market, the Wine Festival, Leipzig Market Music, and the fabulous Christmas Market. Since the 13th century, Leipzig and its Markets have been the most vital centers of trade in Germany.

In 1341, Frederick II, Son of Frederick the Peaceful and Margrave of Meissen, offered the cloth merchants of Leipzig a Romanesque building of their own at the south end of the Leipzig Market Square. This building, called the Cloth Hall (Tuchhaus), shared extensions and spaces with the City Council.

The building complex grew. Two structures were added in the 15th century. A council chamber was completed in 1467. A stair tower emerged in 1476. In 1498, after all the growth and extensions, it was decided to rebuild the Town Hall.

The Old Town Hall was rebuilt in its current Saxon Renaissance style in 1557. It housed the Upper Court and the Court of Aldermen, the city magistrate, council archives, and prison cells. In 1905, it was decided to use the Old Town Hall as the Leipzig City History Museum.

The two-story building is over 300 feet long. It has a steep roof with 13 connecting row dormers and staggered gables. A stone arcade faces the square. An octagonal stair tower is next to the main entrance. The entrance is flanked by two ionic columns topped with the gaff heads of the master builders. Stone box oriels are on the gable ends.

In the large ceremonial hall is a portrait of Johann Sebastian Bach by German painter Elias Gottlob Haussmann. Haussmann also signed Bach's employment certificate as a cantor at St. Thomas' Church. There is also a scale model of the city in 1832 made by Leipzig upholsterer and furniture maker Johann Christoph Merzdorf.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Leipzig. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Market Square and Old Town Hall on Map

Sight Name: Market Square and Old Town Hall
Sight Location: Leipzig, Germany (See walking tours in Leipzig)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Leipzig, Germany

Create Your Own Walk in Leipzig

Create Your Own Walk in Leipzig

Creating your own self-guided walk in Leipzig is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Leipzig Architectural Jewels

Leipzig Architectural Jewels

Anyone who wants to delve into Leipzig's interesting history should see its collection of one of the most beautiful Renaissance buildings in Germany. The city has many impressive historic monuments and contemporary constructions by world famous architects. Take this self-guided walking tour to discover Leipzig’s most amazing architecture.

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 0.9 Km or 0.6 Miles
A Walk on the Leipzig Music Trail

A Walk on the Leipzig Music Trail

The spatial density of historic locations associated with music in Leipzig is truly mind-boggling. But then again, this is hardly surprising, given the eclectic score of musicians who had left their mark on the city in various years.

Indeed, it was in Leipzig that Johann Sebastian Bach served as an organist and choirmaster at Thomaskirche as well as a cantor at Nikolaikirche; composer Robert...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.2 Km or 2 Miles
Leipzig Introduction Walking Tour

Leipzig Introduction Walking Tour

The name "Leipzig" may be derived from the Slavic word "Lipsk", meaning "linden trees place." The Nazi government renamed the city "Reichsmessestadt Leipzig" ("Reich Fair Trade City Leipzig"). In 1989, with the fall of communism, the city was "Hero City" - in recognition of the role that the Monday demonstrations there played in the fall...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.4 Km or 1.5 Miles