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Archaeology & Cultural Heritage
(For nice photos of the cathedral, see main page.)
I can't believe what 's happening in Germany's oldest city, Worms, the Romano-Celtic city of Borbetomagus. Not enough that the diocese insists in building a 15-metre high concrete "parish hall" with cafe and shop in front of one of the most important Romanesque cathedrals in Germany (inaugurated 1018; the previous cathedral was built here by the Merowingians c.600; the first bishop of the civitas Vangionum in 4th c.), bad enough that politicans were persitently ignoring some 16,000 signatures from the local citizenry, roughly one fourth of the electorate (democracy seems to be quite dead in Germany!), but during my last visit in March-April 2016 I had to notice that the archaeological excavations of this important site have stopped and that building the horrible 1960's-style "parish hall" has already started (see photo below)!
In January 2016, the archaeologists were still digging - and during the previous 12 months they hardly scratched the surface since there is (or rather, was) so much archaeology! Among others, significant finds from the early Medieval period when the first cathedral was built on this site! But what about the Roman levels and the pre-Roman levels? People have been frequenting the Cathedral Mount since Neolithic times. The cathedral is completely aligned with Roman remains, the presumed Roman forum-basilica complex. And now, I fear, all the earlier archaeology of that important site has been just destroyed for ever. Stunning Roman remains were found nearby in the 1980's when Mathidle Grünewald discovered here among others remains of Jupiter columns (Viergöttersteine, etc.). The new "parish hall" will completey destroy the site: the cathedral should really be an UNESCO world heritage site; after all, less important sites are (not to mention the cathedral of Speyer, almost completely a 19th-century reconstruction after its destruction in 1689 or the cathedral of Cologne/Köln that was only finished under the Prussians in the 19th century). But now, the historic cathedral of Worms, celebrating 1,000 years in 2018, will never be on ther world heritage list thanks to the short-sightedness and stubborness of the diocese of Mainz and the Worms city council and its mayor. Examples, like Dresden and Köln, demonstrate how important the environment is for the UNESCO world heritage title.
Moreover, the view of the splendid Gothic St Nicholas chapell (where a Neptune altar was found many years ago, suggesting an enormous cult continuity for the protection of the Rhine shippers and fishers) will be completely blocked.
And the diocese and parish don't even consider building a museum for this amazing cathedral and diocese, just a cafe, shop and meeting hall.
I just find it disgusting how our history and heritage is just destroyed (at least we had some archaeological excavation - better than in many other parts of this historic city...).
See below for images from December 2015 and two photos I took today (10th April 2016)! Very sad!
Also cf. the other pages for examples how this important cathedral and its surroundings have been abused and difigured in recent years.
For the website of the citizens group, cf. http://www.kein-haus-am-dom.de/?Home
Sorry - work in progress! More information, text and images when I find the time.
10. April 2016
Nach dem Baubeginn: Wurden (und werden) wirklich keine weiteren archäologischen Überreste zerstört und das historische Erbe dieser für ganz Europa wichtigen Stätte für immer ausgelöscht?
Wir dürfen auch nicht die ebene Fläche vergessen, worauf der Kreuzgang einmal stand: wer hat sie geschaffen, und wann? Für den romanischen oder für den gotischen Kreuzgang? Oder vielleicht schon in römischer Zeit?
4. Januar 2016
Noch sind die Ausgrabungen voll im Gange. So viel archäologische Funde gibt es hier, daß man sich nur wenige Zentimeter unter dem Plattenbelag des Domplatzes befindet. Aber darunter befinden sich die Fund aus Spätantike, Römerzeit, keltischer Eisenzeit, Bronzezeit & Co.