01000101 in Sternenfels
Another small town near Maulbronn is Sternenfels.
I was on my way to check if an ice-cream place had opened and passed a very strange looking column. It was very tall, with a golden band close to the top and lots of zeroes and ones engraved in it. I was wondering what it was, but my husband as a mathematician immediately recognized the engravings as a binary code.After some looking around we found a plate, telling us the code means Sternenfels written in binary letters. The column had been put up for Sternenfels's participation at the EXPO 2000.
An (in)famous citizen: Knittlingen
Knittlingen is a small town close to Maulbronn, so small that it isn't in the VT database. Although it's roughly the same size, it seems to be much smaller, probably because it lacks the tourism Maulbronn has because of the monastery.
It's on the bus route from the train station in Bretten to Maulbronn and after passing through it a few times I wanted to see more of it.
In 15th century , probably around 1480,a famous person was born there, Dr Faust. He was, depending on which legend you believe, a magician, an alchemist, a miracle worker, a searcher for truth... He became really famous when the German writer Goethe wrote a play about him and his deal with the devil to find out the cause of all things between heaven and earth.
Small Knittlingen is very proud of its famous citizen. There is Faust museum, which is also a research centre and often houses talks about Dr Faust. I didn't visit the museum this time, since it's in an old building and old buildings have lots of stairs and are not wheelchair accessible at all. But I will visit there later.
The influence of the Maulbronn Monastery can be seen all over in Knittlingen. On many historic buildings there are signs saying this used to belong to the monks of Maulbronn, this was where they had their wine press, this was where they stored many of their belongings.
Another group of people who influenced life in Knittlingen was the Taxis family, who established the first post office in Knittlingen in 1490. They opened a horse station, to change horses there on the route from the Netherlands to Austria.The word for our taxis today comes from this family name, only today we take a car and not a horse.
The main street today still passes a long historic building called the Kanne Post. It's a restaurant today.
- Historical Travel
Bretten is a nice, small town , less than half an hour by car from Maulbronn. We stopped there to visit the Schutzengelmuseum, a museum for guardian angels.
This museum is inside an old, half-timbered house, beautiful in itself to look at, but a listed building and as such not much changed inside. This means there are steep stairs and no lift.
On the ground floor and one of the upper floors there was an exhibition about different types of windows used in these old, half-timbered houses. While this was surprisingly interesting - I admit I had never before thought about what type of window you need for an old house - it was not the main reason we had come.
My mother wanted to see the guardian angel exhibition, and this was on the upper floors.
It was very difficult for her to climb the stairs, it took a lot of time and was quite painful. But it was worth it.
There were many pictures of scenes when guardian angels protect children, some not really great art but actually a bit kitschy. What I found very interesting were the additional explanations, how the concept of guardian angels can be seen in many religions all over the world. Apart from the paintings of guardian angels there were painting of their counterparts in other religions.
This museum is well worth a visit, but not if you have any problem walking. We talked to the man at the entrance and he told us they had tried just about anything to get permission for a lift, but as it is a historical building they never got this permission. He said this was especially bad, since most of their visitors interested in guardina angels were elderly people who usually had great trouble with the stairs.
Right now (winter 2012) there is special exhibition about festivities of light in winter around the world, Christmas, Hanukkah, Lucia etc. We would have loved to go there, but my mother's problems have got worse and there is no way she could manage the stairs now.
The entrance is free, you're welcome to give a donation.
It is open on weekends and holidays from 11:00 to 17:00
- Religious Travel