WATCH: How the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin became a symbol of unification

2018-09-05 16:30
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The Brandenburg gate is an triumphant arch crowned by the quadriga. It’s 20 metres high and flanked by two gatehouses.

Victoria, the Roman goddess of victory, drive the chariot’s four horses. Millions of people have seen the gate, but very few of them know how it came to be.

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According to historian Zitha Pothe-Elevi, the arch was built in 1788 by Frederik William II to commemorate Prussia's important alliance Britain and the Dutch Republic.

Anyone who wants to learn more about the monument can visit the nearby Brandenburg gate museum – The Gate Berlin.

A multimedia show reviews 300 years of history in 20 minutes. It’s aimed at young tourists who are often pressed for time in their travels.

The journey through time in pictures highlights, for example, the roaring 20s, then Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich with Nazi troops marching through the Brandenburg gate.

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The 1953 uprising of peoples in East Germany and its bloody oppression is also commemorated. The building of the Berlin Wall in 1961 left the Brandenburg gate inside a restricted area between East and West Berlin. Since the fall of the wall in 1989, the gate has stood as a symbol of Germany’s reunification.

From New Year’s fireworks to the soccer world cup fan zone, today the Brandenburg Gate is Germany’s most prominent venue for large-scale events and tourists can’t get enough of the gate.

“Just the magnificence of the building, how tall it is, the carvings that are in each individual pillar is quite spectacular,” remarks one tourist.

Visitors can even take the Brandenburg gate home with them – the nearby souvenir shops offer a wide variety of miniature versions of this significant landmark in central Berlin.

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