The palace of Karlsruhe

Karl Wilhelm is well-known as the founder of the city of Karlsruhe. He was born on the 18th January 1679 in Durlach (his first residence), and died in Karlsruhe in 1738. As the name of the city suggests Karlsruhe should have been a place of rest and relaxation. At the beginning Karl Wilhelm had never planned to have his palace built out of stone, but rather out of wood. He had already seen his palace burn once, and he wanted to limit the eventual costs in this way. The danger of war in the region was still high - yet nevertheless he allowed the castles outer walls to be built of stone.

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Margrave Karl Wilhelm of Baden-Durlach
(1679 - 1738)

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On 17th June 1715 in the middle of the Hardtwald, Karl Wilhelm celebrated the foundation stone of the palace tower of his new residence being laid.

Karl Friedrich, who succeeded his grandfather Karl Wilhelm in 1746, found himself only hesitatingly able to maintain the residence in Karlsruhe. He decided that the already ailing wooden castle would be rebuilt out of stone. The citizens should also be allowed to build their houses out of stone in the future - admittedly follwing previously circulated plans. The reputation of Karlsruhe as a Court of muse came about not least because of his wife's (Margravine Caroline Luise, 1723 - 1783) interest in arts and natural sciences.

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Margrave Karl Friedrich, Elector and Grand Duke of Baden, Grandson of Karl Wilhelm
(1728 - 1811)

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His educated wife Margravine Caroline Luise
(1723 - 1783)

The well-built town, now designed to last, lived to see Karl Friedrich as an example of an enlightened, absolute sovereign, who abolished torture in 1769 and serfdom in 1783.

Please click here for more history information (in English).