Constance of Austria, Margravine of Meissen
Constance of Babenberg, a member of the House of Babenberg, was Margravine of Meissen from 1234 until her death, by her marriage with Margrave Henry the Illustrious. Constance was a younger daughter of Duke Leopold VI of Austria and his wife, the Byzantine princess Theodora Angelina, daughter of Emperor Isaac II Angelos. In 1225 her elder sister Margaret married the 14-year-old Henry, King-elect of Germany and eldest son of the Hohenstaufen emperor Frederick II. Upon her father's death in 1230, the Babenberg duchies of Austria and Styria passed to her brother Frederick the Quarrelsome. On 1 May 1234 Constance married the Wettin margrave Henry the Illustrious; the wedding took place in an open field near Vienna rather than in the newly erected Hofburg residence of the Babenbergs. It is believed that the conversion of the castle had not been completed, or it was too small. There are three sources for information about the wedding itself. Two of them report that the wedding happened in other words, in Stadlau.
The third source reports that the wedding took place in aput Ringlense, a name which has fallen into disuse and was used instead of today's Floridsdorf. The two sources reporting the location as Stadlau published a list of wedding guests. Present at the wedding were King Wenceslaus I of Bohemia and Prince Béla IV of Hungary, the Archbishop of Salzburg as well as the bishops of Passau, Bamberg and Seckau; the secular princes were represented by Margrave Přemysl of Moravia, Duke Albert of Saxony, Duke Carinthia, the Carinthian duke Bernhard von Spanheim, the Landgrave of Thuringia. This guest list suggests the importance of the Babenberg dukes within the Holy Roman Empire. Constance bequeathed a True Cross relic to the Dresden parish, housed by a chapel which became known as the Kreuzkirche, her husband, who had inherited both the Margraviate of Meissen and the March of Lusatia from his father, the late Margrave Theodoric I, participated in a Prussian Crusade of the Teutonic Order soon after their wedding.
In 1239 he entered into the Magdeburg Wars with the Ascanian margraves of Brandenburg. He remained a loyal supporter of Emperor Frederick II, who betrothed his daughter Margaret of Sicily with Henry's and Constance's first-born son Albert. After Constance's death in 1243, Margrave Henry secondly married Agnes of Bohemia, a daughter of King Wenceslaus I; when Constance's brother Duke Frederick was killed in the 1246 Battle of the Leitha River, he claimed the Austrian duchy for himself. Henry and Constance had two sons: Margrave of Meissen Theodoric of Landsberg. In 1910, a street in Donaustadt, was named after her: Konstanziagasse
The Wartburg is a castle built in the Middle Ages. It is situated on a precipice of 410 meters to the southwest of and overlooking the town of Eisenach, in the state of Thuringia, Germany. In 1999, UNESCO added Wartburg Castle to the World Heritage List, it was the home of St. Elisabeth of Hungary, the place where Martin Luther translated the New Testament of the Bible into German, the site of the Wartburg festival of 1817 and the supposed setting for the legendary Sängerkrieg, it was an important inspiration for Ludwig II. Wartburg is the most-visited tourist attraction in Thuringia after Weimar. Although the castle today still contains substantial original structures from the 12th through 15th centuries, much of the interior dates back only to the 19th century; the name of the castle is derived from German: Warte, a watchtower, in spite of a tradition which holds that the castle's founder, on first laying eyes on the site, exclaimed, "Warte, Berg -- du sollst mir eine Burg tragen!". It is a German play on words for mountain and fortress.
Wartburg is located on a 410 meters precipice to the southwest of, overlooking the town of Eisenach, in the state of Thuringia, Germany. The hill is an extension of Thuringian Forest, overlooking Mariental to the south-east and the valley of the Hörsel to the north, through which passed the historical Via Regia; the Rennsteig passes not far to the south of the castle. The castle's foundation was laid about 1067 by the Thuringian count of Schauenburg, Louis the Springer, a relative of the Counts of Rieneck in Franconia. Together with its larger sister castle Neuenburg in the present-day town of Freyburg, the Wartburg secured the extreme borders of his traditional territories. Louis the Springer is said to have had clay from his lands transported to the top of the hill, not quite within his lands, so he might swear that the castle was built on his soil; the castle was first mentioned in a written document in 1080 by Bruno, Bishop of Merseburg, in his De Bello Saxonico as Wartberg. During the Investiture Controversy, Louis's henchmen attacked a military contingent of King Henry IV of Germany.
The count remained a fierce opponent of the Salian rulers, upon the extinction of the line, his son Louis I was elevated to the rank of a Landgrave in Thuringia by the new German king Lothair of Supplinburg in 1131. From 1172 to 1211, the Wartburg was one of the most important princes' courts in the German Reich. Hermann I supported poets like Walther von der Vogelweide and Wolfram von Eschenbach who wrote part of his Parzival here in 1203; the castle thus became the setting for the legendary Sängerkrieg, or Minstrels' Contest in which such Minnesänger as Walther von der Vogelweide, Wolfram von Eschenbach, Albrecht von Halberstadt and many others took part in 1206/1207. The legend of this event was used by Richard Wagner in his opera Tannhäuser. At the age of four, St. Elisabeth of Hungary was sent by her mother to the Wartburg to be raised to become consort of Landgrave Ludwig IV of Thuringia. From 1211 to 1228, she was renowned for her charitable work. In 1221, Elisabeth married Ludwig. In 1227, Ludwig died on the Crusade and she followed her confessor Father Konrad to Marburg.
Elisabeth died there in 1231 at the age of 24 and was canonized as a saint of the Roman Catholic Church just five years after her death. In 1247, Heinrich Raspe, the last landgrave of Thuringia of his line and an anti-king of Germany, died at the Wartburg, he was succeeded by Margrave of Meissen. In 1320, substantial reconstruction work was done after the castle had been damaged in a fire caused by lightning in 1317 or 1318. A chapel was added to the Palas; the Wartburg remained the seat of the Thuringian landgraves until 1440. From May 1521 to March 1522, Martin Luther stayed at the castle under the name of Junker Jörg, after he had been taken there for his safety at the request of Frederick the Wise following his excommunication by Pope Leo X and his refusal to recant at the Diet of Worms, it was during this period that Luther translated the New Testament from ancient Greek into German in just ten weeks. Luther's was not the first German translation of the Bible but it became the most well known and most circulated.
From 1540 until his death in 1548, Fritz Erbe, an Anabaptist farmer from Herda, was held captive in the dungeon of the south tower, because he refused to abjure anabaptism. After his death, he was buried in the Wartburg near the chapel of St. Elisabeth. In 1925, a handwritten signature of Fritz Erbe was found on the prison wall. Over the next centuries, the castle fell into disuse and disrepair after the end of the Thirty Years' War when it had served as a refuge for the ruling family. In 1777, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe stayed at the Wartburg for five weeks, making various drawings of the buildings. On 18 October 1817, the first Wartburg festival took place. About 500 students, members of the newly founded German Burschenschaften, came together at the castle to celebrate the German victory over Napoleon four years before and the 300th anniversary of the Reformation, condemn conservatism and call for German unity under the motto "Honour - Freedom - Fatherland". Speakers at the event included Heinrich Hermann Riemann, a veteran of the Lützow Free Corps, the philosophy student Ludwig Rödiger, Hans Ferdinand Massmann.
With the permission of the absent chaplain Friedrich Ludwig Jahn, the Code Napoléon and other books were burned'in effigy': instead of the costly volumes, scraps of parchment with the titles of conser
Theodora Angelina, Duchess of Austria
Theodora Angelina was the wife of Leopold VI of Austria, by whom she had several children. Theodora is believed to have been born sometime around 1180/5 in Constantinople to parents whose identities are uncertain. However, it is known; as such, Theodora may have been a daughter of John Doukas or else a daughter of one of Andronikos' daughters. In 1203, Theodora married Leopold VI, Duke of Austria, her husband died in 1230 and she subsequently became a nun. She died in 1246. Leopold and Theodora had seven children: Margaret, Duchess of Austria Agnes of Austria Leopold of Austria fell from a tree and died Henry II, Duke of Mödling Gertrude of Austria Frederick II, Duke of Austria Constantia of Austria Schwennicke, D. Europäische Stammtafeln Cawley, Charles, BYZANTIUM: Theodora Adied 1246, Medieval Lands database, Foundation for Medieval Genealogy, Johannes Preiser-Kapeller, Von Ostarrichi an den Bosporus. Ein Überblick zu den BeziehungenMittelalter, in: Pro Oriente Jahrbuch 2010. Vienna 2011, p. 66-77
Isabella of Angoulême
Isabella of Angoulême was queen consort of England as the second wife of King John from 1200 until John's death in 1216. She was suo jure Countess of Angoulême from 1202 until 1246. Isabella had five children by the king, including his heir Henry III. In 1220, Isabella married Hugh X of Lusignan, Count of La Marche, by whom she had another nine children; some of Isabella's contemporaries, as well as writers, claim that Isabella formed a conspiracy against King Louis IX of France in 1241, after being publicly snubbed by his mother, Blanche of Castile, for whom she had a deep-seated hatred. In 1244, after the plot had failed, Isabella was accused of attempting to poison the king. To avoid arrest, she sought refuge in Fontevraud Abbey, where she died two years but none of this can be confirmed. Isabella was the only daughter and heir of Aymer Taillefer, Count of Angoulême, by Alice of Courtenay, sister of Peter II of Courtenay, Latin Emperor of Constantinople and granddaughter of King Louis VI of France.
Isabella became Countess of Angoulême in her own right on 16 June 1202, by which time she was queen of England. Her marriage to King John took place on 24 August 1200, in Angoulême, a year after he annulled his first marriage to Isabel of Gloucester, she was crowned queen in an elaborate ceremony on 8 October at Westminster Abbey in London. Isabella was betrothed to Hugh IX le Brun, Count of Lusignan, son of the Count of La Marche; as a result of John's temerity in taking her as his second wife, King Philip II of France confiscated all of their French lands, armed conflict ensued. At the time of her marriage to John, the blonde-haired blue-eyed Isabella was renowned by some for her beauty and has sometimes been called the Helen of the Middle Ages by historians. Isabella possessed a volatile temper similar to his own. King John was infatuated with his beautiful wife, she was engaged to Hugh IX le Brun when she was taken by John. It was said that he neglected his state affairs to spend time with Isabella remaining in bed with her until noon.
However, these were rumors spread by John's enemies to discredit him as a weak and grossly irresponsible ruler, given that at the time John was engaging in a desperate war against King Philip of France to hold on to the remaining Plantagenet duchies. The common people began to term her a "siren" or "Messalina", which spoke volumes as to popular opinion, her mother-in-law, Eleanor of Aquitaine accepted her as John's wife. On 1 October 1207 at Winchester Castle, Isabella gave birth to a son and heir, named Henry III after the King's father, Henry II, he was followed by another son and three daughters, Joan and Eleanor. All five children survived into adulthood and made illustrious marriages; when King John died in October 1216, Isabella's first act was to arrange the speedy coronation of her nine-year-old son at the city of Gloucester on 28 October. As the royal crown had been lost in The Wash, along with the rest of King John's treasure, she supplied her own golden circlet to be used in lieu of a crown.
The following July, less than a year after his crowning as King Henry III of England, she left him in the care of his regent, William Marshal, 1st Earl of Pembroke and returned to France to assume control of her inheritance of Angoulême. In the spring of 1220, Isabella married Hugh X of Lusignan, "le Brun", Seigneur de Luisignan, Count of La Marche, the son of her former fiancé, Hugh IX, to whom she had been betrothed before her marriage to King John, it had been arranged that her eldest daughter Joan should marry Hugh, the little girl was being brought up at the Lusignan court in preparation for her marriage. Hugh, upon seeing Isabella, whose beauty had not diminished, preferred the girl's mother. Joan was provided with another husband, King Alexander II of Scotland, whom she wed in 1221. Isabella had married Hugh without the consent of the king's council in England, as was required of a queen dowager; that council had the power not only to assign to her any subsequent husband, but to decide whether she should be allowed to remarry at all.
That Isabella flouted its authority moved the council to confiscate her dower lands and to stop the payment of her pension. Isabella and her husband retaliated by threatening to keep Joan, promised in marriage to the King of Scotland, in France; the council first responded by sending furious letters to the Pope, signed in the name of young King Henry, urging him to excommunicate Isabella and her husband, but decided to come to terms with Isabella, to avoid conflict with the Scottish king, eager to receive his bride. Isabella was granted the stannaries in Devon, the revenue of Aylesbury for a period of four years, in compensation for her confiscated dower lands in Normandy, as well as the £3,000 arrears for her pension. Isabella had nine more children by Hugh X, their eldest son Hugh XI of Lusignan succeeded his father as Count of La Marche and Count of Angoulême in 1249. Isabella's children from her royal marriage did not join her in Angoulême, remaining in England with their eldest brother Henry III.
Described by some contemporaries as "vain and troublesome," Isabella could not reconcile herself with her less prominent position in France. Though Queen mother of England, Isabella was now regarded as a mere Countess of La Marche and had to give precedence to other women. In 1241, when Isabella and Hugh were summoned to the French court to swear fealty to K
A dynasty is a sequence of rulers from the same family in the context of a feudal or monarchical system, but sometimes appearing in elective republics. Alternative terms for "dynasty" may include "family" and "clan", among others; the longest-surviving dynasty in the world is the Imperial House of Japan, otherwise known as the Yamato dynasty, whose reign is traditionally dated to 660 BC. The dynastic family or lineage may be known as a "noble house", which may be styled as "royal", "princely", "ducal", "comital" etc. depending upon the chief or present title borne by its members. Historians periodize the histories of numerous nations and civilizations, such as Ancient Egypt and Imperial China, using a framework of successive dynasties; as such, the term "dynasty" may be used to delimit the era during which a family reigned, to describe events and artifacts of that period. The word "dynasty" itself is dropped from such adjectival references; until the 19th century, it was taken for granted that a legitimate function of a monarch was to aggrandize his dynasty: that is, to expand the wealth and power of his family members.
Prior to the 20th century, dynasties throughout the world have traditionally been reckoned patrilineally, such as under the Frankish Salic law. In nations where it was permitted, succession through a daughter established a new dynasty in her husband's ruling house; this has changed in some places in Europe, where succession law and convention have maintained dynasties de jure through a female. For instance, the House of Windsor will be maintained through the children of Queen Elizabeth II, as it did with the monarchy of the Netherlands, whose dynasty remained the House of Orange-Nassau through three successive queens regnant; the earliest such example among major European monarchies was in the Russian Empire in the 18th century, where the name of the House of Romanov was maintained through Grand Duchess Anna Petrovna. In Limpopo Province of South Africa, Balobedu determined descent matrilineally, while rulers have at other times adopted the name of their mother's dynasty when coming into her inheritance.
Less a monarchy has alternated or been rotated, in a multi-dynastic system – that is, the most senior living members of parallel dynasties, at any point in time, constitute the line of succession. Not all feudal states or monarchies were/are ruled by dynasties. Throughout history, there were monarchs. Dynasties ruling subnational monarchies do not possess sovereign rights; the word "dynasty" is sometimes used informally for people who are not rulers but are, for example, members of a family with influence and power in other areas, such as a series of successive owners of a major company. It is extended to unrelated people, such as major poets of the same school or various rosters of a single sports team; the word "dynasty" derives from Latin dynastia, which comes from Greek dynastéia, where it referred to "power", "dominion", "rule" itself. It was the abstract noun of dynástēs, the agent noun of dynamis, "power" or "ability", from dýnamai, "to be able". A ruler from a dynasty is sometimes referred to as a "dynast", but this term is used to describe any member of a reigning family who retains a right to succeed to a throne.
For example, King Edward VIII ceased to be a dynast of the House of Windsor following his abdication. In historical and monarchist references to reigning families, a "dynast" is a family member who would have had succession rights, were the monarchy's rules still in force. For example, after the 1914 assassinations of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria and his morganatic wife Duchess Sophie von Hohenberg, their son Duke Maximilian was bypassed for the Austro-Hungarian throne because he was not a Habsburg dynast. Since the abolition of the Austrian monarchy, Duke Maximilian and his descendants have not been considered the rightful pretenders by Austrian monarchists, nor have they claimed that position; the term "dynast" is sometimes used only to refer to agnatic descendants of a realm's monarchs, sometimes to include those who hold succession rights through cognatic royal descent. The term can therefore describe distinct sets of people. For example, David Armstrong-Jones, 2nd Earl of Snowdon, a nephew of Queen Elizabeth II through her sister Princess Margaret, is in the line of succession to the British crown.
On the other hand, the German aristocrat Prince Ernst August of Hanover, a male-line descendant of King George III of the United Kingdom, possesses no legal British name, titles or styles. He was born in the line of succession to the British throne and was bound by Britain's Royal Marriages Act 1772 until it was repealed when the Succession to the Crown Act 2013 took effect on 26 March 2015. Thus, he requested and obtained formal permission from Queen Elizabeth II to marry the Roman Catholic Princess Caroline of Monaco in 1999. Yet, a clause of the English Act of Settlement 1701 remained in effect at that time, stipulating that dynasts who
Louis IV, Holy Roman Emperor
Louis IV, called the Bavarian, of the house of Wittelsbach, was King of the Romans from 1314, King of Italy from 1327, Holy Roman Emperor from 1328. Louis IV was Duke of Upper Bavaria from 1294/1301 together with his elder brother Rudolf I, served as Margrave of Brandenburg until 1323, as Count Palatine of the Rhine until 1329, he became Duke of Lower Bavaria in 1340, he obtained the titles Count of Hainaut, Holland and Friesland in 1345 when his wife Margaret inherited them. Louis was born in Munich, the son of Louis II, Duke of Upper Bavaria and Count Palatine of the Rhine, Matilda, a daughter of King Rudolph I. Though Louis was educated in Vienna and became co-regent of his brother Rudolf I in Upper Bavaria in 1301 with the support of his Habsburg mother and her brother, King Albert I, he quarrelled with the Habsburgs from 1307 over possessions in Lower Bavaria. A civil war against his brother Rudolf due to new disputes on the partition of their lands was ended in 1313, when peace was made at Munich.
In the same year, on November 9, Louis defeated his Habsburg cousin Frederick the Fair, further aided by duke Leopold I. He was a friend of Frederick, with whom he had been raised. However, armed conflict arose when the guardianship over the young Dukes of Lower Bavaria was entrusted to Frederick though the late Duke Otto III, the former King of Hungary, had chosen Louis. On 9 November 1313, Frederick was defeated by Louis in the Battle of Gammelsdorf and had to renounce the tutelage; this victory caused a stir within the Holy Roman Empire and increased the reputation of the Bavarian Duke. The death of Holy Roman Emperor Henry VII in August 1313 necessitated the election of a successor. Henry's son John, King of Bohemia since 1310, was considered by many prince-electors to be too young, by others to be too powerful. One alternative was Frederick the Fair, the son of Henry's predecessor, Albert I, of the House of Habsburg. In reaction, the pro-Luxembourg party among the prince electors settled on Louis as its candidate to prevent Frederick's election.
On 19 October 1314, Archbishop Henry II Cologne chaired an assembly of four electors at Sachsenhausen, south of Frankfurt. Participants were Louis' brother, Rudolph I of the Palatinate, who objected to the election of his younger brother, Duke Rudolph I of Saxe-Wittenberg, Henry of Carinthia, whom the Luxembourgs had deposed as King of Bohemia; these four electors chose Frederick as King. The Luxembourg party did not accept this election and the next day a second election was held. Upon the instigation of Peter of Aspelt, Archbishop of Mainz, five different electors convened at Frankfurt and elected Louis as King; these electors were Archbishop Peter himself, Archbishop Baldwin of Trier and King John of Bohemia - both of the House of Luxembourg - Margrave Waldemar of Brandenburg and Duke John II of Saxe-Lauenburg, who contested Rudolph of Wittenberg's claim to the electoral vote. This double election was followed by two coronations: Louis was crowned at Aachen - the customary site of coronations - by Archbishop Peter of Mainz, while the Archbishop of Cologne, who by custom had the right to crown the new king, crowned Frederick at Bonn.
In the following conflict between the kings, Louis recognized in 1316 the independence of Switzerland from the Habsburg dynasty. After several years of bloody war, victory seemed within the grasp of Frederick, supported by his brother Leopold. However, Frederick's army was decisively defeated in the Battle of Mühldorf on 28 September 1322 on the Ampfing Heath, where Frederick and 1300 nobles from Austria and Salzburg were captured. Louis held Frederick captive in Trausnitz Castle for three years, but the determined resistance by Frederick's brother Leopold, the retreat of John of Bohemia from his alliance, the Pope's ban induced Louis to release Frederick in the Treaty of Trausnitz of 13 March 1325. In this agreement, Frederick recognized Louis as legitimate ruler and undertook to return to captivity if he did not succeed in convincing his brothers to submit to Louis; as he did not manage to overcome Leopold's obstinacy, Frederick returned to Munich as a prisoner though the Pope had released him from his oath.
Louis, impressed by such nobility, renewed the old friendship with Frederick, they agreed to rule the Empire jointly. Since the Pope and the electors objected to this agreement, another treaty was signed at Ulm on 7 January 1326, according to which Frederick would administer Germany as King of the Romans, while Louis would be crowned as Holy Roman Emperor in Italy. However, after Leopold's death in 1326, Frederick withdrew from the regency of the Empire and returned to rule only Austria, he died on 13 January 1330. Despite Louis' victory, Pope John XXII still refused to ratify his election, in 1324 he excommunicated Louis, but the sanction had less effect than in earlier disputes between emperors and the papacy. After the reconciliation with the Habsburgs in 1326, Louis marched to Italy and was crowned King of Italy in Milan in 1327. In 1323, Louis had sent an army to Italy to protect Milan against the Kingdom of Naples, together with France the strongest ally of the papacy, but now the Lord of Milan Galeazzo I Visconti was deposed since he was suspected of conspiring with the pope.
In January 1328, Louis entered Rome and had himself crowned emperor by the aged senator Sciarra Colonna, called captain of the Roman people. Three months Louis published a decree declaring Pope John XXII deposed on grounds of heresy, he installed a Spiritual Franciscan, Pietro Rainalducci as Nicholas V, but both left Rome in August 1328. In the meanti
Arnstadt is a town in Ilm-Kreis, Germany, on the river Gera about 20 kilometres south of Erfurt, the capital of Thuringia. Arnstadt is one of the oldest towns in Thuringia, has a well-preserved historic centre with a preserved town wall; the town is nicknamed Das Tor zum Thüringer Wald because of its location on the northern edge of that forest. Arnstadt has a population of some 27,000; the city centre is on the west side of Gera. The municipality has absorbed several neighbouring municipalities: Angelhausen–Oberndorf, Siegelbach and Wipfratal; the neighbouring municipalities are Amt Wachsenburg, Dornheim, Bösleben-Wüllersleben, Ilmenau and Geratal. A deed of gift issued 1 May 704 in Würzburg by the Thuringian Duke Hedan II to the Anglo-Saxon bishop Willibrord of Utrecht is the first written reference to Arnstadt, along with two other towns—the oldest documented reference of settlements in Thuringia and central and eastern Germany. In 726, Arnstadt passed to the Abbey of Echternach, to the Abbey of Hersfeld.
According to historian August Beck, in 925 the territories of Henry I were extended as a bulwark against the invading Magyars. On 17 December 954, Holy Roman Emperor Otto I made peace in Arnstadt with his rebellious son Liudolf of Swabia and another son, whom he appointed Archbishop of Mainz, decided that the Liebfrauenkirche would be built. In the 12th century a part of Arnstadt fell under the rule of the Counts of Kevernburg. On 8 March 1198 the princes of the Holy Roman Empire gathered in Arnstadt and elected Philip of Swabia as King of Germany. In 1220 Arnstadt was first described as a civitas. On 21 April 1266, the abbot of the Abbey of Hersfeld granted a charter. After the extinction of the Kevernburg family from 1302 to 1306, the counts of Schwarzburg took possession of Arnstadt. Attempts by Erfurt 1342 and 1345 to seize what was now a wealthy town failed due to the strong attachment. Arnstadt's prosperity was based on the milling industry, the cloth-making trade and trade in wine, wood, grain and vegetables.
On 30 January 1349, Count Günther XXI of Schwarzburg, an adversary of King Charles IV, was elected and crowned sovereign of Arnstadt in Frankfurt. He renounced this title on 26 May for 20,000 silver marks. A 1404 reference was found in 2000 to Bratwurst originating in Arnstadt, therefore the town claims its invention. In 1496, the Schwarzburg domains were divided into the lordships of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt and Schwarzburg-Sondershausen, to which Arnstadt belonged. During the German Peasants' War 95 participants in the uprising were beheaded as ringleaders in the Arnstadt marketplace, on 17 June and 2 August 1525; the city was forced to pay 3000 guilders for supporting the insurgents. In 1531 the Reformation was introduced into Arnstadt; as a result, the Franciscan maidens' convent, subsequently the Franciscan mendicant convent were secularized. From 1581 the church of the former Barfüßerkloster was the main church of the city. In 1553, work began on Neideck Castle; the water palace was completed in 1560.
With the onset of industrialisation, a residential area emerged to the west and south of the old town, industrial areas to the north. During the Second World War, it was the site of a prisoner-of-war camp for Poles and Russians. 1,700 prisoners were housed in tents. The camp was liberated by American Forces in April 1945. A number of mass graves were discovered. 1,200 civilians from the neighbouring city of Weimar were brought on a forced tour of the camp. This included a "parchment display" which displayed a "lampshade made of human skin." The display included pieces of skin used for painting pictures. After the Second World War, the town expanded further to the north along the Geratals, new residential areas emerged in the 1970s and 80s, in the east and southeast of Arnstadt, including the residential Raven Hold. Arnstadt is a manufacturing centre with glassworks and foundries, a solar panel production plant, glove-manufacturing and wood-finishing businesses. Arnstadt has a beautifully kept old city, restricted to pedestrian traffic.
Its noteworthy buildings include: the 13th-century Church of Our Lady an 18th-century palace the Bach Church The composer Johann Sebastian Bach, whose family lived for generations in the vicinity of Arnstadt, became the organist at the New Church in 1703 while he was still in his teens. He stayed there until 1707. Bach had a high opinion of Johann Friedrich Wender, the organ-builder who had constructed the church's organ. While there is some uncertainty about which of his surviving compositions were produced in Arnstadt, there is evidence that the Wender organ, which still survives, allowed Bach to experiment with unusual modulations and harmonies. Many Bach scholars believe his well-known "Toccata and Fugue in D Minor" was composed with the Arnstadt organ in mind; the annual precipitation averages 487 mm. The town hosts an annual high jump meet – Hochsprung mit Musik – which attracts some of the world's foremost high jumpers. Kajsa Bergqvist set a world record in Arnstadt's Sporthalle am Jahn-sportpark in 2006.
Willibald Alexis, historical novelist Johann Sebastian Bach, famous composer and musician Ludwig Bechstein, writer Johann Christian von Hellbach Marcel Kittel, cyclist Johann Friedrich Wender, organ builder Johann Christoph Bach, composer Johann Michael Bac