Statues - Hither & Thither

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Stadt Heidelberg


Plöck 107

Fassade der Universitätsbibliothek

Façade of the University Library

Hermann Volz & Hermann Binz

Heidelberg /  Fassade der Universitätsbibliothek   Heidelberg /  Fassade der Universitätsbibliothek


The east and south facades of the University Library are richly decorated with sculptures, architectural details and ornaments. The key to understand the sculpture program is given by the two sculptures (made by Volz) at the main entrance:

Heidelberg - Fassade der Universitätsbibliothek
Heidelberg - Fassade der Universitätsbibliothek
  1. Prometheus with the eagle Ethon. Prometheus represents human striving, particularly the quest for scientific knowledge.
  2. Woman and child symbolizing the passing of knowledge from generation to generation.
In the top of the façade are laughing and the crying masks standing for comedy and tragedy. An inscription honors Grand Duke Friedrich of Baden, who was the ruler at the same time President of the University: a dom 1905 erbavt vnter grossherzog friedrich with the coat of arms of Baden, flanked by reliefs showing Prometheus stealing fire (?).

Above the windows are portrait medallions of the electors, to whom the Heidelberg university is named "Ruprecht-Karls-Universität":

Heidelberg - Fassade der Universitätsbibliothek
Heidelberg - Fassade der Universitätsbibliothek
  1. rvpertvs Ruprecht I., der Rote, von der Pfalz / Rupert I, the Red, Elector Palatine (Wolfratshausen 1309 - Neustadt an der Weinstraße 1390), Count Palatine of the Rhine, 1353-1390. In 1386, he founded the University of Heidelberg, the third university in the Holy Roman Empire, which was named after him (Wikipedia).
  2. carl friedrich
    Karl Friedrich Großherzog von Baden / Charles Frederick, Grand Duke of Baden (Karlsruhe 1728 - Karlsruhe 1811), Margrave, elector and later Grand Duke of Baden (initially only margrave of Baden-Durlach) from 1738 until his death. He reorganised the university of Heidelberg, and therefor his name was added to the university's name (Wikipedia).


Sources & Information


  • Country: Germany
  • Binz, Hermann
  • Façade with statues (secular)
  • Karl Friedrich von Baden
  • Monarch
  • Prometheus
  • Ruprecht I der Rote von der Pfalz
  • Volz, Hermann
  • Woman with child
  • Locatie (N 49°24'34" - E 8°42'21") (Satellite view: Google Maps)

    Item Code: debw162; Photograph: 26 September 2012
    Of each statue we made photos from various angles and also detail photos of the various texts.
    If you want to use photos, please contact us via the contact form (in Dutch, English or German).
    © Website and photos: René & Peter van der Krogt

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