Munich Greeter

Legendary places: The beautiful tower

In the pedestrian zone, where today the gentlemen’s outfitter “Hirmer” is located, stood once the “beautiful tower” (1175-1807). This name came from its numerous frescoes. First, this tower was a simple gate through which Munich´s salt trail led to the west. Later, the tower of served as a residence for the Munich merchant family Kaufinger.

2014-07-27 10.08.14In front of Hirmer house, the “shadow” of the tower is visible until today. If you look at the ground, you see the outline of the tower set off the sidewalk in darker coloured plates.

Connected with the tower is a sombre legend, of which a statue on the left corner of the house reminds us:2014-07-27 10.08.53

An honorable goldsmith is said to have had once his workshop there. One day, he got from a nobleman the order to copy a valuable piece of jewellery. The goldsmith was a very careful person and always closed his workshop, when he went out, so that nothing could be stolen. But then, it was a summer time. Therefore, the goldsmith also opened his upper window, laid out the jewellery in front of him and worked on the new one. When he came back one day to his workshop, he to his horror that the piece of jewellery had disappeared. Desperately, he ran to nobleman and reported his misfortune. The nobleman thought the goldsmith had stolen the jewellery and brought him to court. Because the door of the workshop had not been broken open and there was no other way to get into the workshop, the judges assumed immediately, that the goldsmith had hidden the jewellery and thus condemned him to death.

When the goldsmith was led to the hangman’s place, a small bell rang which he had manufactured sometime earlier. The goldsmith looked up and said: „My voice fades away and no one believes me. But as clear this little bell rings, as certainly my innocence will come to light. Then, however, it will be too late!“

Some time after the execution, the beautiful tower had to be repaired. When a craftsman in the roof bay window swung the trowel, a jackdaw from the bay window flew. The craftsman thought: „I have startled it, and in there seems to be its nest!“ But then he took a closer look, and saw something glittering inside. What was it? The disappeared jewellery of the hanged goldsmith!

Attracted by the golden glimmer of the jewellery, the jackdaw had flown through the window into the goldsmith´s workshop and had nicked it. For which the goldsmith lost his life.

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