Where Cranach fell in love

Lucas Cranach the Elder fell in love in Gotha. It was here he met Barbara Brengebier, the daughter of a town councillor. Their marriage is thought to have taken place in Gotha around 1512.

Herzogliches Museum GothaThe building on the main square that belonged to the Brengebier family, and in which Cranach’s daughter Ursula later lived with her husband, is still called the Cranach House today. Her sister Barbara also lived in Gotha from 1555 and was married to Christian Brück, the chancellor to Elector Johann Friedrich I of Saxony. During the Grumbach feuds he was hung, drawn and quartered on 18 April 1567 in the main square, where a plaque commemorating the date is set in the cobblestones.

The museums in the Friedenstein Palace contain many important paintings and an extensive collection of prints by the Cranach family from old Ernestine collections, brought to the town by the Dukes of Saxe-Gotha.

Places to visit

Friedenstein Palace Baroque Friedenstein Palace (1643–1654) boasts magnificent apartments, a research library with extensive holdings on Luther’s lifetime, and outstanding collections on art, history and nature in several museums. The Cranach paintings belonging to the Friedenstein Palace Foundation in Gotha are on display in the art collections of the recently reopened Herzogliches Museum (1864–1879).

Augustinian monastery Martin Luther, at whose wedding Cranach was a witness, regularly visited Gotha. In 1537 when Luther was seriously ill, he wrote his second will here, in which he stated that he wanted to be buried in Gotha. Church reformer Friedrich Myconius worked at the monastery (his house is next door) and was a good friend of Cranach the Elder.

Cranach House, Hauptmarkt 17 The original building burnt down in the 17th century and was rebuilt incorporating some of the original elements such as the Cranach coat of arms.