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Warsaw Barbican (Barbakan Warszawski)
Warsaw and surrounding
Architecture,  Castles, Fortresses, Towers
Castles, Fortresses, Towers

Each ancient city can boast of a beautiful building, which was initially built as a fortification. Warsaw is no exception. Here, at the Old Town entrance, shines the beautiful Warsaw Barbican, a defensive fortress built in the 16th century, part of the fortress wall that once surrounded the entire city.

A barbican is a semicircular stronghold, serving as an additional reinforcement to the fortress wall. This type of structure was very popular in the Middle Ages, but, unfortunately, less than ten have survived to our time. And three of them are in Poland.

The Warsaw Barbican is one of the most beautiful and extensive. It was built in 1540. This project was created by the architect Jan Baptist the Venetian, specially invited to Poland to build castles and fortresses. The Venetian master created a semicircular bastion with three floors. He built it on the site of the old and already dilapidated city gate.

To make the barbican as impregnable as possible, he fortified it with three-meter-wide walls.

Unfortunately, during World War II, the beautiful barbican, like most of the buildings in Warsaw’s Old Town, was almost completely destroyed. Its restoration began in 1952. Using surviving 17th-century sketches and old red bricks from demolished buildings in Nysa and Wroclaw, modern architects managed to reconstruct the defensive structure almost completely.

Today the barbican divides Warsaw into two parts: the Old and the New Towns. Within its premises, many monuments to famous people have been installed. There is also a curious monument to the Mermaid of Warsaw. According to legend, she swam out of the Vistula River and predicted to the fishermen that a beautiful city would appear on the riverbank.

You can explore the entire history of the barbican in the museum, which regularly hosts exhibitions and thematic meetings. Street musicians and actors who have long taken fancy to this place will accompany you walk through the barbican.

Address: Barbakan Warszawski

Published by

Diane Mikheeva

All content and media files are published under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (CC BY-SA 4.0)

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