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Amberger Stadtbrille – A walk along the river Vils

Chronicles mention the so-called “passage over the Vils” for the first time in 1454. The Wassertorbau is 46 metres above the river Vils, which flows through Amberg. However, today’s “Amberger Stadtbrille” were still adorned with two towers above the central pillars at that time. Hans Hauck, the Trier court architect, added another storey to the building spanning the river on the left and right. The middle even received two floors and tower superstructures.

At the end of the seventeenth century, the additional central floor and the turrets were removed. All elements of the gate construction are then uniformly roofed over. This is how it came about that the Amberg city glasses in 1698 finally look the way they are known and loved today.

The secret gate

The city has long been surrounded by a ring wall. Four gates lead inside. The Amberg city glasses are commonly understood by all residents as the fifth gate. The real secret, however, hides a little more to the west. There is a third bridge arch. However, this one was forgotten. It had already been filled up in the 16th century. On one side it borders directly on the“Kurfürstliches Schloss“. On the other side, a white wall (almost) hides it even today. It was not until 1996, during the renovation work carried out for the upcoming National Garden Show, that the third arch was uncovered.

The landmark

But why do the inhabitants now call this part of the city wall “Amberger Stadtbrille”? The answer is quite simple: A pillar of the water gate stands in the middle of the Vils. The arches are reflected by the water in such a way that the impression of spectacle lenses is created. Thus the once practicable building turned into a very special landmark of the aerial art town Amberg. It is a very popular photo motif and always the destination of numerous tourists. Today, you can pass under the Amberg city goggles on one of the popular Plätten rides and thus briefly become part of the optical illusion.

Round dance of the gates

Other gates of the city fortification of Amberg are: