Online Encyclopedia

LUBECK

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V17, Page 87 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
Spread the word: del.icio.us del.icio.us it!
LUBECK, a state and city (Freie and Hansestadt Lubeck) of Germany. The principality of Lubeck, lying north of the state, is a constituent of the grand-duchy of Oldenburg (q.v.). The state is situated on an arm of the Baltic between Holstein and Mecklenburg-Schwerin. It consists of the city of Lubeck, the town of Travemunde, 49 villages and the country districts, embraces 115 sq. m. of territory, and had a population in 1907 of 109, 265, of which 93,978 were included in the city and its immediate suburbs. The state lies in the lowlands of the Baltic, is diversified by gently swelling hills, and watered by the Trave and its tributaries, the Wakenitz and the Stecknitz. The soil is fertile, and, with the exception of forest land (14% of the whole area), is mostly devoted to market gardening. Trade is centred in the city of Lubeck. The constitution of the free state is republican, and, by the fundamental law of 1875, amended in 1905 and again in 1907, consists of two assemblies. (1) The Senate of fourteen members, of whom eight must belong to the learned professions, and six of these again must be jurists, while of the remaining six, five must be merchants. The Senate represents the sovereignty of the state and is presided over by the Oberburgermeister, who during his two years' term of office bears the title of " magnificence." (2) The House of Burgesses (Btirgerschaft), of 120 members, elected by free suffrage and exercising its powers partly in its collective capacity and partly through a committee of thirty members. Purely commercial matters are dealt with by the chamber of commerce, composed of a praeses, eighteen members and a secretary. This body controls the exchange and appoints brokers, shipping agents and underwriters. The executive is in the hands of the Senate, but the House of Burgesses has the right of initiating legislation, including that relative to foreign treaties; the sanction of both chambers is required to the passing of any new law. Lubeck has a court of first instance (Amtsgericht) and a high court of justice (Landgericht); from the latter appeals lie to the Hanseatic court of appeal (Oberlandesgericht) at Hamburg, and from this again to the supreme court of the empire (Reichsgericht) in Leipzig. The people are nearly all Lutherans, and education is compulsory between the ages of six and fourteen. The estimated revenue for the year 1908–1909 amounted to about !65o,000, and the expenditure to a like sum. The public debt amounted, in 1go8, to about £2,518,000. Lubeck has one vote in the federal council (Bundesrat) of the German Empire, and sends one representative to the imperial parliament (Reichstag). History of the Constitution.—At the first rise of the town justice was administered to the inhabitants by the Vogt (advocatus) of the count of Holstein. Simultaneously with its incorporation by Henry the Lion, duke of Saxony, who presented the city with its own mint toll and market, there appears a magistracy of six, chosen probably by the Vogt from the Schoffen (scabini, probi homines). The members of the town council had to be freemen, born in lawful wedlock, in the enjoyment of estates in freehold and of unstained repute. Vassals or servants of any lord, and tradespeople, were excluded. A third of the number had annually to retire for a year, so that two-thirds formed the sitting council. By the middle of the 13th century there were two burgomasters (magistri burgensium). Meanwhile, the number of magistrates (consules) had increased, ranging from twenty to forty and upwards. The council appointed its own officers in the various branches of the administration. In the face of so much self government the Vogt presently disappeared altogether. There were three classes of inhabitants, full freemen, half freemen and guests or foreigners. People of Slav origin being considered unfree, all intermarriage with them tainted the blood; hence nearly all surnames point to Saxon, especially Westphalian, and even Flemish descent. The magistracy was for two centuries almost exclusively in the hands of the merchant aristocracy, who formed the companies of traders or " nations," such as the Bergen fahrer, Novgorodfahrer, Rig¢ fahrer and Stockholm-fahrer. From the beginning, however, tradesmen and handicraftsmen had settled in the town, all of them freemen of German parentage and with property and houses of their own. Though not eligible for the council, they shared to a certain extent in the self-government through the aldermen of each corporation or gild, of which some appear as early as the statutes of 1240. Naturally, there arose much jealousy between the gilds and the aristocratic companies, which exclusively ruled the republic. After an attempt to upset the merchants had been suppressed in 1384, the gilds succeeded, under more favourable circumstances, in 1408. The old patrician council left the city to appeal to the Hansa and to the imperial authorities, while a new council with democratic tendencies, elected chiefly from the gilds, took their place. In 1416, however, owing to the pressure brought to bear by the Hansa, by the emperor Sigismund and by Eric, king of Denmark, there was a restoration. The aristocratic government was again expelled under the dictatorship of Jurgen Wullenweber (c. 1492–1537), till the old order was re-established in 1535. In the constitution of 1669, under the pressure of a large public debt, the great companies yielded a specified share in the financial administration to the leading gilds of tradesmen. Nevertheless, the seven great companies continued to choose the magistrates by co-optation among themselves. Three of the four burgomasters and two of the senators, however, had henceforth to be graduates in law. The constitution, set aside only during the French occupation, has subsequently been slowly reformed. From 1813 the popular representatives had some share in the management of the finances. But the reform committee of 1814, whose object was to obtain an extension of the franchise, had made little progress, when the events of 1848 led to the establishment of a representative assembly of 120 members, elected by universal suffrage, which obtained a place beside the senatorial government. The republic has given up its own military contingent, its coinage and its postal dues to the German Empire; but it has preserved its municipal self-government and its own territory, the inhabitants of which enjoy equal political privileges with the citizens. The City of Lubeck.—Lubeck, the capital of the free state, was formerly the head of the Hanseatic League. It is situated on a gentle ridge between the rivers Trave and Wakenitz, ro m. S.W. of the mouth of the former in the bay of Lubeck, 40 M. by rail N.E. of Hamburg, at the junction of lines to Eutin, Birchen, Travemunde and Strassburg (in Mecklenburg-Schwerin) and consists of an _ inner town and three suburbs. The former ramparts between the Trave and the old town ditch have been converted into promenades. The city proper retains much of its ancient grandeur, despite the tendency to modernize streets and private houses. Foremost among its buildings must be mentioned its five chief churches, stately Gothic edifices in glazed brick, with lofty spires and replete with medieval works of art—pictures, stained glass and tombs. Of them, the Marienkirche, built in the 13th century, is one of the finest specimens of early Gothic in Germany. The cathedral, or Domkirche, founded in 1173, contains some curious sarcophagi and a magnificent altar-piece in one of the chapels, while the churches of St James (Jakobikirche), of St Peter (Petrikirche) and of St Aegidius (Aegidienkirche) are also remarkable. The Rathaus (town hall) of red and black glazed brick, dating from various epochs during the middle ages, is famous for its staircase, the vaulted wine cellar of the city council beneath and magnificent wood carving. There should also be mentioned the Schiffershaus; the medieval gates (Holstentor, Burgtor); and the Hospital of the Holy Ghost, remarkable for ancient frescoes and altars in rich wood, carving, the entrance hall of which is a 13th-century chapel, restored in 1866 and decorated in 1898. The museum preserves the most remarkable municipal archives in existence as well as valuable collections of historical documents. The poet, Emanuel Geibel (1889), and the painter, Johann Friedrich Overbeck (1789-1869), were natives of Lubeck. This city is famous for the number and wealth of its charitable institutions. Its position as the first German emporium of the west end of the Baltic has been to some extent impaired by Hamburg and Bremen since the construction of the North Sea and Baltic Canal, and by the rapid growth and enterprise of Stettin. In order to counterbalance their rivalry, the quays have been extended, a canal was opened in 1900 between the Trave and the Elbe, the river up to the wharves has been deepened to 25 ft. or more. The river is kept open in winter by ice-breakers. A harbour was made in 1899-1900 on the Wakenitz Canal for boats engaged in inland traffic, especially on the Elbe and Elbe-Trave Canal. Lubeck trades principally with Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Russia, the eastern provinces of Prussia, Great Britain and the United States. The imports amounted in value to about £4,850,000 in 1906 and the exports to over £10,000,000. The chief articles of import are coal, grain, timber, copper, steel and wine, and the exports are manufactured goods principally to Russia and Scandivania. The industries are growing, the chief being breweries and distilleries, saw-mills and planing-mills, shipbuilding, fish-curing, the manufacture of machinery, engines, bricks, resin, preserves, enamelled and tin goods, cigars, furniture, soap and leather. Pop. (1885) 55,399; (1905) 91,541. History.—Old Lubeck stood on the left bank of the Trave, where it is joined by the river Schwartau, and was destroyed in 1138. Five years later Count Adolphus II. of Holstein founded new Lubeck, a few miles farther up, on the peninsula Buku, where the Trave is joined on the right by the Wakenitz, the emissary of the lake of Ratzeburg. An excellent harbour, sheltered against pirates, it became almost at once a competitor for the commerce of the Baltic. Its foundation coincided with the beginning of the advance of the Low German tribes of Flanders, Friesland and Westphalia along the southern shores of the Baltic—the second great emigration of the colonizing Saxon element. In 1140 Wagria, in 1142 the country of the Polabes (Ratzeburg and Lauenburg), had been annexed by the Holtsaetas (the Transalbingian Saxons). From 1166 onwards there was a Saxon count at Schwerin. Frisian and Saxon merchants from Soest, Bardowiek and other localities in Lower Germany, who already navigated the Baltic and had their factory in Gotland, settled in the new town, where Wendish speech and customs never entered. About 1157 Henry the Lion, duke of Saxony, forced his vassal, the count of Holstein, to give up Lubeck to him; and in 1163 he removed thither the episcopal see of Oldenburg (Stargard), founding at the same time the dioceses of Ratzeburg and Schwerin. He issued the first charter to the citizens, and constituted them a free Saxon community having their own magistrate, an advantage over all other towns of his dominions. He invited traders of the north to visit his new market free of toll and custom, providing his subjects were promised similar privileges in return. From the beginning the king of Denmark granted them a settlement for their herring fishery on the coast of Schoonen. Adopting the statutes of Soest in Westphalia as their code, Saxon merchants exclusively ruled the city. In concurrence with the duke's Vogt (advocatus) they recognized only one right of judicature within the town, to which nobles as well as artisans had to submit. Under these circumstances the population grew rapidly in wealth and influence by land and sea, so that, when Henry was attainted by the emperor, Frederick I., who came in person to besiege Lubeck in 118r, this potentate," in consideration of its revenues and its situation on the frontier of the Empire," fixed by charter, dated the 19th of September 1188, the limits, and enlarged the liberties, of the free town. In the year 1201 Lubeck was conquered by Waldemar II. of Denmark. But in 1223 it regained its liberty, after the king had been taken captive by the count of Schwerin. In 1226 it was made a free city of the Empire by Frederick II.,and its inhabitants took part with the enemies of the Danish king in the victory of Barnhovede in July 1227. The citizens repelled the encroachments of their neighbours in Holstein and in Mecklenburg. On the other hand their town, being the principal emporium of the Baltic by the middle of the 13th century, acted as the firm ally of the Teutonic knights in Livonia. Emigrants founded new cities and new sees of Low German speech among alien and pagan races; and thus in the course of a century the commerce of Lubeck had supplanted that of Westphalia. In connexion with the Germans at Visby, the capital of Gotland, and at Riga, where they had a house from 1231, the people of Lubeck with their armed vessels scoured the sea between the Trave and the Neva. They were encouraged by papal bulls in their contest for the rights of property in wrecks and for the protection of shipping against pirates and slave-hunters. Before the close of the century the statutes of Lubeck were adopted by most Baltic towns having a German population, and Visby protested in vain against the city on the Trave having become the court of appeal for nearly all these cities, and even for the German settlement'in Russian Novgorod. In course of time more than a hundred places were embraced in this relation, the last vestiges of which did not disappear until the beginning of the 18th century. From about 1299 Lubeck presided over a league of cities, Wismar, Rostock, Stralsund, Greifswald and some smaller ones, and this Hansa of towns became heir to a Hansa of traders simultaneously on the eastern and the western sea, after Lubeck and her confederates had been admitted to the same privileges with Cologne, Dortmund and Soest at Bruges and in the steelyards of London, Lynn and Boston. The union held its own, chiefly along the maritime outskirts of the Empire, rather against the will of king and emperor, but nevertheless Rudolph of Habsburg and several of his successors issued new charters to Lubeck. As early as 1241 Lubeck, Hamburg and Soest had combined to secure their highways against robber knights. Treaties to enforce the public peace were concluded in 1291 and 1338 with the dukes of Brunswick, Mecklenburg and Pomerania, and the count of Holstein. Though the great federal armament against Waldemar IV., the destroyer of Visby, was decreed by the city representatives assembled at Cologne in 1367, Lubeck was the leading spirit in the war which ended with the surrender of Copenhagen and the peace concluded at Stralsund on the 24th of May 1370. Her burgomaster, Brun Warendorp, who commanded the combined naval and land forces, died on the field of battle. In 1368 the seal of the city, a double-headed eagle, which in the 14th century took the place of the more ancient ship, was adopted as the common seal of the confederated towns (civitates maritimae), some seventy in number. Towards the end of the 15th century the power of the Hanseatic League began to decline, owing to the rise of Burgundy in the west, of Poland and Russia in the east and the emancipation of the Scandinavian kingdom from the union of Calmar. Still Lubeck, even when nearly isolated, strove to preserve its predominance in a war with Denmark (1501-12), supporting Gustavus Vasa in Sweden, lording it over the north of Europe during the years 1534 and 1535 in the person of Jurgen Wullenweber, the democratic burgomaster, who professed the most advanced principles of the Reformation, and engaging with Sweden in a severe naval war (1536-70). But the prestige and prosperity of the town were beginning to decline. Before the end of the 16th century the privileges of the London Steelyard were suppressed by Elizabeth. As early as 1425 the herring, a constant source of early wealth, began to forsake the Baltic waters. Later on, by the discovery of a new continent, commerce was diverted into new directions. Finally, with the Thirty Years' War, misfortunes came thick. The last Hanseatic diet met at Lubeck in 163o, 'shortly after Wallenstein's unsuccessful attack on Stralsund; and from that time merciless sovereign powers stopped free intercourse on all sides. Danes and Swedes battled for the possession of the Sound and for its heavy dues. The often changing masters of Holstein and Lauenburg abstracted much of the valuable landed property of the city and of the chapter of Lubeck. Towards the end of the 18th century there were signs of improvement. Though the Danes temporarily occupied the town in 18o1, it preserved its freedom and gained some of the chapter lands when the imperial constitution of Germany was broken up by the act of February 1803, while trade and commerce prospered for a few years. But in November 18o6, when Blucher, retiring from the catastrophe of Jena, had to capitulate in the vicinity of Lubeck, the town was sacked by the French. Napoleon annexed it to his empire in December 181o. But it rose against the French in March 1813, was re-occupied by them till the 5th of December, and was ultimately declared a free and Hanse town of the German Confederation by the act of Vienna of the 9th of June 1815. The Hanseatic League, however, having never been officially dissolved, Lubeck still enjoyed its traditional connexion with Bremen and Hamburg. In 18J3 they sold their common property, the London Steelyard; until 1866 they enlisted by special contract their military contingents for the German Confederation, and down to 1879 they had their own court of appeal at Lubeck. Lubeck joined the North German Confederation in 1866, profiting by the retirement from Holstein and Lauenburg of the Danes, whose interference had prevented as long as possible a direct railway between Lubeck and Hamburg. On the 27th of June 1867 Lubeck concluded a military convention with Prussia, and on the rlth of August 1868 entered the German Customs Union (Zollverein), though reserving to itself certain privileges in respect of its considerable wine trade and commerce with the Baltic ports. See E. Deecke, Die Freie and Hansestadt Lubeck (4th ed., Lubeck, 1881) and Liibische Geschichten and Sagen (Lubeck, 1891) ; M. Hoffmann, Geschichte der Freien and Hansestadt Lubeck (Lubeck, 1889–1892) and Chronik von Lubeck (Lubeck, 1908); Die Freie and Hansestadt Lubeck, published by Die geographische Gesellschaft in Lubeck (Lubeck, 1891) ; C. W. Pauli, Lubecksche Zustande -im Mittel-alter (Lubeck, 1846–1878) ; J. Geffcken, Lubeck in der Milte des z6",* Jahrhunderts (Lubeck, 19o5); P. Hasse, Die Anfange Lubecks (Lubeck, 1893); H. Bodeker, Geschichle der Freien and Hansestadt Lubeck (Lubeck, 1898); A. Holm, Lubeck, die Freie and Hansestadt (Bielefeld, 'goo) ; G. Waitz, Lubeck unter Jurgen Wullenweber (Berlin, 1855–1856) ; Klug, Geschichte Lubecks w¢hrend der Vereinigung mit dem franzosischen Kaiserreich (Lubeck, 1857); F. Frensdorff, Die Stadt- and Gerichtsverfassung Lubecks im r2. and 13. Jahrhundert (Lubeck, 1861) ; the Urkundenbuch der Stadt Lubeck (Lubeck, 1843–1904); the Liibecker Chroniken (Leipzig, 1884–1903); and the Zeitschrift des Vereins fur lubeckische Geschichte (Lubeck, 186o fol.). (R. P.; P. A. A.)
End of Article: LUBECK
[back]
LUBBEN
[next]
LUBLIN

Additional information and Comments

I think this person is worth to be the personality of your city Ernst Ludwig Fischer The personality of Lubeck Ernst Ludwig Fischer (1844-1906) historian, writer The author’s baptismal name was Ernst Ludwig Fischer, but his admiration for Carlyle and Tennyson led him to adopt the nom de guerre of Thomas Alfred Fischer. Born at Lübeck in 1844, he afterwards studied law, theology, and literature at the Universities of Leipzig, Tübingen, Göttingen, and Basel, after which he resolved to devote himself entirely to literature and historical research. At a later period he settled in Edinburgh, assiduously carrying on his literary work and partly supporting himself by teaching. He also travelled a good deal in Scotland, England, and Ireland, winning the hearts of many friends by his gentle, amiable, and studious disposition, as well as by his outstanding musical talents. His historical researches also took him repeatedly to the Continent, and particularly to Northern Germany and to Sweden. To the latter country he was enabled to go, with the aid of a number of generous patrons and friends, in the autumn of 1905; and it is a pathetic and interesting fact that, at the age of sixty, he studied Swedish for the express purpose of making the needful historical researches for the present volume, and that he lived and travelled for several months in Sweden on the meagre pittance of about £60. His earlier historical works had earned him a high reputation for zeal and accuracy, but no pecuniary reward, in spite of which he entered enthusiastically upon his still more arduous task of breaking fresh ground in an entirely new field. Readers will judge as to the measure of success the late author has attained, but the present writer, who has edited the volume with much care, has no hesitation in pronouncing it to be highly interesting.Besides his translations into German of the Life and some of the works of Carlyle and Tennyson, and of Lord Goschen’s Life of his grandfather, G. J. Göschen, the Leipzig bookseller, and various other literary and historical volumes, he was the author of two interesting and original works, "The Scots in Germany" and "The Scots in Eastern and Western Prussia," published in 1902 and 1903 respectively, by Messrs Otto Schuize & Co., Edinburgh. His unfinished work was the book “The Scots in Sweden”, published after his death in 1907 in Edinburgh.Ernst Ludwig Fischer died on 9th September 1906, having nearly completed his sixty-second year. I.Tren (Russia)
» Add information or comments to this article.
Please link directly to this article:
Highlight the code below, right click and select "copy." Paste it into a website, email, or other HTML document.