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corona kronstadt brass

Text [i legende / Text and captions Marius Oprea Fotografii / Photos Mircea Savu Andrei B`lt`re]u tefan Petrescu Dan Ioan Dinescu Imagini de arhiv` / Archive images NOI Media Print Biblioteca Academiei Romne Grafic` / Graphic layout Iulian Capsali DTP Gabriel Nicula Versiune englez` / English version Alina Crc Redactare / Editing Laura Pamfil Director de proiect / Project manager Arpad Harangozo Ovidiu Morar

corona kronstadt brass

Bra[ov, secolul al XVII-lea (dup` Georg Kreckwitz, Totius Principatus Transylvaniae accurata descriptio) Brasov, 17th century (after Georg Kreckwitz, Totius Principatus Transylvaniae accurata descriptio)



Bra[ovul, n Apus

Brasov, in the West

Copil`ria ora[ului

The childhood of a city

Vrsta de aur

The golden age

Ora[ul ntre ra]iune [i istorie


The city between reason and history

Oamenii de dincolo de ziduri


The people beyond the walls

Pre]ul modernit`]ii

The price-tag of modernity

Ora[ul con[tiin]elor

The city of consciences



Bra[ovul, n Apus

Brasov, in the West

Ora[ul adev`rat, inima sa tainc` mi scap` nc` n]elegerii. Biserica Neagr`, vechile turnuri ale Bra[ovului au totu[i mituri [i legende str`ine de cei ce i anim` ast`zi str`zile. Ele apar]in unei popula]ii practic disp`rute, care ne-a l`sat zidurile vechi ale amintirii, dar prea pu]in din spirit. Aici, tradi]ia [i renumele unui mare centru comercial medieval, n care hrtia scris` de un notar era valabil` [i purt`toare de valori pn` n cel mai ndep`rtat col] al Europei, au r`mas istorie. Ast`zi, trecutul ora[ului este redescoperit aproape zilnic sub pojghi]a sub]ire a tencuielilor din ultima jum`tate de secol, date la o parte pentru a aduce napoi la lumin` vechile fresce. Ajunge ns` s` restaurezi Biserica Neagr`, pentru a rentrona n ora[ spiritul celor ce au ridicat-o, ajunge s` te proclami european, pentru a fi? Primul pas este ncercarea de a n]elege sensurile reconstruc]iei chipului vechi al locului. Explorarea [i asumarea trecutului a devenit un proces de valorizare. Bra[ovul, ca [i celelalte ora[e din restul ]`rii, indiferent c` sunt n Ardeal, Moldova sau cmpia valah`, [i-a pierdut individualitatea zi de zi n a doua

The true city, its secret heart still evades my understanding. The Black Church, the old towers of Brasov boast myths and legends remote from those strolling up and down its streets today. For they belong to a population practically gone, that bequeathed to us old ramparts of memory yet too little of its spirit. Here, the tradition and renown of a big medieval commercial center, whose notaries would issue papers acknowledged and bearing value even in the most God forsaken corners of Europe, pertain to history. The citys past is daily rediscovered under the shallow coats of paint applied in the last fifty years, removed now to reveal the glory of old frescoes. But is it enough to restore the Black Church in order to rekindle in the city the spirit of those who built it? Is it enough to declare oneself European in order to be European? A first step would be an attempt to grasp how the place is being returned to its former looks. Exploring and assuming the past has become a process of value-assignment. Brasov, just like the other towns in Romania, no matter whether situated in Transylvania, Moldavia or in the Wallachian plain lost their individual touch

Gloria Bra[ovului a fost Fabrica de Avioane. A fost nfiin]at` prin decret regal n 1925. Aici s-au produs avioane de vn`toare care au fost utilizate n cursul celui de-al doilea r`zboi mondial. Fabrica a fost demontat` [i transportat` dup` r`zboi n U.R.S.S. Brasovs forte was once the Plane Factory, set up by royal decree in 1925. During WW2 it produced reliable fighter planes. After the war, the plant was dismantled and taken to the Soviet Union.

jum`tate a secolului trecut, pentru a primi n schimb aceea[i uniform` gri a blocurilor, un cenu[iu pavoazat cu steaguri ro[ii. Dar nu numai vechiul chip trebuie recuperat. Istoria recent` trebuie [i ea n]eleas` [i asumat`. Nu e de ajuns s` ui]i umilin]ele [i nfrngerile pentru a le anula efectele. Trecutul trebuie supus unui examen de con[tiin]`. S` nu uit`m c` n casele sa[ilor din vechiul ora[, deporta]i n mas` n toamna anului 1944 [i prim`vara anului 1945, f`r` ca restul localnicilor s`

in the second half of the 20th century, when they received the same uniform structure of apartment blocks, and gray atmosphere dotted by red flags. It is not only the old looks that must be recovered. Recent history needs also to be understood and assumed. It is not enough to forget humiliation and defeat in order to wipe out their effects. One should put the past to a test of consciousness. Let us not forget that the Transylvanian Saxons in the old town were deported en masse in the autumn of 1944 and


Hotelul Aro (redenumit Carpa]i n anii n care Bra[ovul se numea ora[ul Stalin) a fost construit n 1934-1935 pe locul unei vechi biserici reformate [i al unei farmacii, la rndul lor ridicate n zona vechiului zid de nord al ora[ului. Cl`direa a fost proiectat` de arhitectul Horia Creang` [i p`streaz` pn` ast`zi prestan]a [i tr`s`turile epocii, exprimate nu doar de fa]ad`, ci [i de interioarele largi [i sobre. Aro Hotel (renamed Carpati in the years when Brasov was called Stalin City) was erected between 1934 and 1935 in the place of an old reformed church and of a pharmacy, in their turn built in the area of the citys northern wall. This construction designed by Horia Creanga has preserved to this day the solemn features of the period, visible not only in the facade but also in the spacious yet subdued interiors.

Cobornd dinspre Tmpa spre Strada Castelului, ora[ul vechi are o putere aparte cea a unei zone n care s-au p`strat case vechi, mp`r]ite de str`du]e pavate cu granit. Deasupra lor se nal]`, altfel greu de observat de aproape, cupola bisericii romano-catolice din Strada V`mii, proiectat` de arhitectul Iosif Carl Lamasch la finele secolului al XVIII-lea, dup` moda vienez` a timpului. Coming from the Tampa Hill down Castle Street, one never loses the feeling of the old town very much present in the venerable houses separated by little streets paved with granite. In between, on Customs Street, there rises the dome (noticeable only from a distance) of the Roman-Catholic Church designed by architect Iosif Carl Lamasch at the end of the 18th century in the Viennese fashion of the time.

Arhitectura interbelic` a l`sat ora[ului o amprent` specific`. Declarate monumente istorice, cl`diri precum cea din imagine, aflat` n zona Por]ii chei, au fost salvate de proiectul de sistematizare a ora[ului din anii 80. Inter-war architecture left its specific mark on the town. Buildings like the one in the photo, situated in the Schei Gate area have been spared the demolition drive of the 80s. Many are genuine historical monuments.

ncerce s` mpiedice n vreun fel tragedia (ceea ce a [i produs iremediabila ruptur` a comunit`]ii germane de locurile n care au f`cut istorie mai bine de opt secole), au fost adu[i n anii industrializ`rii for]ate familii care n cel mai bun caz cunoscuser` ora[ul ca turi[ti. Bra[ovul, pe care unii dintre locuitori l consider` un ultim bastion al Europei n Balcani, s-a numit vreme de un deceniu ora[ul Stalin. i tot Bra[ovul este ora[ul

spring of 1945 without a single gesture of opposition from the remaining inhabitants (which caused the irremediable break of the German community from the places where they had contributed to the making of history for more than right centuries). Families like mine, who at best had known the town as tourists, were brought in their place during the years of forced industrialization. Brasov, which many of its inhabitants consider Europes last bastion in the Balkans, bore the name of Stalin for more

Pagina urm`toare:

revoltei muncitorilor din 1987, sau al pictorului Liviu Babe[, care s-a autoincendiat n martie 1989, protestnd fa]` de politica de genocid a regimului. E un ora[ a c`rui coloan` vertebral` sunt brnele caselor sale vechi nc` n picioare. Chipul lui adev`rat, cl`dit demult, poate fi privit cteodat` n lumina apusului, cnd se r`sfrnge pe acoperi[ul de ardezie al Bisericii Negre [i al caselor dimprejur. Exist` asemenea momente n care ora[ul parc` ncremene[te [i se ntoarce n sine, spre nceputuri.

than a decade. Brasov is also the town of the 1987 worker revolt, the town of painter Liviu Babes who set himself on fire in March 1989 in protest against the genocide policy of the regime. Beans of the still standing old houses make up the towns spine. Its true face, created once upon a time, concurrently with the very bricks buttressing up these beams can be best admired in the twilight, reflected over the roofing slate of the Black Church and the surrounding houses. At such times, the town seems to stand still and turn upon itself, upon its primeval times.

Partea de est a Bisericii Neagre Ferestrele cu ancadramente gotice [i statuile, delimiteaz` din exterior altarul.
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The eastern side of the Black Church The windows with Gothic frames, and the statues mark on the outside the limits of the altar.

Balcoane din fier forjat, ancadramente de ferestre ornate cu chipuri de ngeri [i grifoni care sprijin` canalele de scurgere a apei, se ntlnesc la majoritatea caselor negustore[ti ale veacului al XIX-lea, n`l]ate fie n zona de sub Tmpa, spre Bastionul es`torilor, fie spre Poiana Bra[ov, n Livada Po[tei. Wrought-iron balconies, window frameworks ornamented with angels and griffins that support the water drains are characteristic for most of the 19th century merchant houses in the Tmpa area, the Weavers Bastion, or the area going to Poiana Brasov, in Livada Postei.




Copil`ria ora[ului

The childhood of a city

Na[terea unui ora[ r`mne, n genere, obiectul aproxim`rilor. Datele sunt de cele mai multe ori disparate [i insuficiente. n genere, din istoria scris` a unui loc s-a p`strat un procent mai mic de 1:1000. La rndul lor, izvoarele scrise reflect` mai pu]in de 1:100 000 din ceea ce s-a ntmplat de fapt. Tocmai de aceea dovezile materiale g`site de arheologi completeaz` un portret care altfel ar avea insuficiente tr`s`turi pentru a nchega imaginea locurilor n vremurile de demult. Sub casele, bisericile [i str`zile sale vechi, Bra[ovul ascunde multe dintre aceste semne ale trecutului. La nceputul secolului al XX-lea, Julius Teutsch, un localnic pasionat de arheologie, descoperea chiar n apropierea por]ii centrale a Bisericii Negre cele mai vechi vestigii g`site ntre zidurile ora[ului, datnd din perioada de trecere de la neoliticul trziu la epoca bronzului: este vorba de un mormnt de nhuma]ie al unui p`stor nomad, originar din stepele de la nordul M`rii Negre. La poalele versantului sudic al Tmpei, pe Valea Cet`]ii, numeroase urme arheologice descoperite n

Generally, the birth of a city is a thing of approximation. Its initial data are most often than not gone or insufficient. As a rule, less than one-thousandth part of its written story is preserved. In their turn, written sources mirror less than one hundred thousandth from what really happened once. Thus, the material artifacts unearthed by archaeologists round off a portrait that otherwise would evince too little to be able to present an image of bygone times. Under its old houses, churches and streets, Brasov hides many tokens of the past. In the early 20 century, Julius Teutsch, a native with a passion for archaeology discovered not far from the central gate of the Black Church the oldest vestiges ever found within the walls of the city, dating from the late Neolithic and the early Bronze Age. It is the tomb of a roaming shepherd from the steppes north of the Black Sea. The numerous archaeological finds uncovered in the 1980s at the foot of the southern slope of the Tampa, in the Cetatii Valley indicate that the place had been inhabited since the early Neolithic. Then,


cheii Bra[ovului, v`zu]i de pe aua Tmpei, ntr-o litografie de la nceputul secolului al XIX-lea, din zona n care se ridicase odinioar` cetatea Bra[ovia (castrum Brassoviense), d`rmat` din ordinul lui Iancu de Hunedoara ntre 1453 [i 1455. n plan apropiat, un p`stor romn privind panorama ce se deschide din acest loc spre vrful nz`pezit Cristianul Mare. Early 19th century lithograph featuring Scheii Brasovului seen from the Tmpa Saddle, the area where once rose the Brasovia citadel (castrum Brassoviense), pulled down on order by Iancu of Hunedoara (Huniady) between 1453 and 1455. In the foreground, a Romanian shepherd admiring the snowcapped Cristianul Mare Peak.

anii 80 au atestat locuirea zonei nc` din neoliticul timpuriu. Cea mai mare concentra]ie de popula]ie n timpurile preistorice a fost atestat` pe colinele ora[ului n epoca bronzului de arheologul Alfred Prox, care a descoperit pe Dealul Melcilor o mare a[ezare, cu un inventar deosebit de bogat (ceramic`, unelte de piatr` [i bronz) care a dat chiar numele unei culturi preistorice (Schneckenberg, dup` denumirea german` a locului). Multe dintre obiectele g`site n

archaeologist Alfred Prox attested the biggest concentration of population in prehistoric times. Generally, namely in the Bronze Age, scattered on the city hills. He also excavated, on the Melci Hill, a big settlement with an extremely rich inventory (ceramics, stone and bronze implements) that gave its name to a prehistoric culture (Scheneckenberg, as the German appellation of the place goes). Many of the objects brought to light during the archaeological digs before WW1 or


Vedere a ora[ului dinspre cartierul Bartolomeu, ntr-o litografie secol XIX. n plan apropiat, fortifica]iile cet`]ii ridicate de austrieci ncepnd cu 1553-1554 pe Dealul Sfntul Martin, care a luat apoi numele de Dealul Cet`]ii. View from the Bartolomeu district, period lithograph. In the foreground, the fortifications of the citadel erected by the Austrians starting in 1553-1554 on the Sfntul Martin Hill, later called the Citadel Hill.





between the two world wars (bronze and gold ornaments, ceramics) can be found today in the collections of the Prehistory Museum of Berlin. Brasovs old hearth was most suitable for human settlement: bathed by several mountain rivers and girdled by protective hills, the area was relatively densely populated until the Daco-Roman wars. The Romans leveled the small Dacian fortification situated at Scheii Brasovului, at Solomons

primului r`zboi mondial sau n perioada interbelic` (podoabe de bronz [i aur, ceramic`) se afl` ast`zi n colec]iile Muzeului de Preistorie din Berlin. Vechea vatr` a ora[ului a fost un loc propice a[ez`rilor omene[ti: alimentat` de cteva pruri de munte [i ap`rat` de colinele ora[ului, zona a fost populat` relativ intens pn` n timpul r`zboaielor daco-romane, cnd o mic` fortifica]ie dacic`, situat` n


n secolul al XIV-lea s-a ridicat n partea de nord-vest a ora[ului un zid de ap`rare cu opt turnuri [i s-a s`pat canalul Graft, pentru drenarea apei scurse de pe pantele Dealului Warthe. n urma inunda]iilor din 1809, funda]iile fortifica]iilor au fost sl`bite, iar zidurile au fost sprijinite cu arcuri de sus]inere. The 14th century saw the building, in the northwest of the town, of a defense wall with eight towers; and also of the Graft canal used to drain the waters trickling down from the slopes of the Warthe Hill. The floods of 1809 weakened the foundations of the fortifications, and buttresses had to be added to the walls.

Litografie nf`]i[nd fortifica]iile de pe Dealul Cet`]ii, a[a cum se vedeau dinspre cap`tul Str`zii Lungi n secolul al XIX-lea. Lithograph depicting the fortifications on the Citadel Hill seen from one end of the Lunga Street, the 19th century.


cheii Bra[ovului, la Pietrele lui Solomon, a fost distrus` de romani. Harta geografului Ptolemaios [i inscrip]ia descoperit` n castrul pe care romanii l-au ntemeiat la R[nov, pomenesc de tribul dacic al cumidavensilor, care se afla n zon`. Vestigii de epoc` roman` s-au g`sit la Bra[ov pe dealul prenghi (care str`juie[te vechea biseric` din Bartolomeu) [i la Stejeri[, pe dealurile dinspre Poiana Bra[ov. n acest timp, ca [i n Evul Mediu, zona era una a frontierei cu ]inuturile din sud. O dat` cu epoca migra]iilor, n aceste locuri se stabile[te o important` comunitate de slavi, care au dat chiar numele ora[ului, men]ionat ca atare (Brasov), ntr-un document din 1294, bras fiind termenul slavilor din sud pentru fortifica]ie. n zorii
Turnul Negru [i Canalul Graft, a[a cum se vedeau n secolul al XIX-lea. A fost ridicat n secolul al XIV-lea pe un pinten stncos al Dealului Warthe. La 23 iulie 1559 a fost lovit de un tr`znet [i a ars, r`mnndu-i numele sub care e cunoscut pn` ast`zi. The Black Tower and the Graft Canal in the 19th century. The tower was erected in the 14th century on an overhang of the Warthe Hill. Struck by lightening on July 23, 1559, it caught fire. Hence the name, preserved to this day.

Rocks. The map of geographer Ptolemayos, just like an inscription in the camp set up by the Romans at Rasnov, mentions the Dacian tribe of the Cumidavensi as living in the area. Vestiges from the Roman epoch have been found on the Sprenghi Hill of Brasov (which guards the old church of Bartolomeu), and at Stejeris, on the hills to Poiana Brasov. At that time, and in the Middle Ages as well, the area represented a frontier with the southern regions. In the period of migrations, a community of Slavs settled here. In fact, they were the ones who established the present name of the town, written in a document from 1294. Bras is the term southern Slavs used for fortification. In the early Middle Ages, in the 11th-12th centuries two citadels were erected there, one of the Sprenghi Hill and the other at the top of Tampa, fortified by double mounds and wooden palisades, nearly seven meters high. They guarded the current radius of the city, where archaeological evidence attests to a population made up of Romanians, Slavs, and Petchengs, keeping up close ties with the area south of the Carpathians. In 1878, an accidental find further verified these connections: while digging at a house foundation a Byzantine hoard was unearthed, dating to the 12th century. It contained diadems, gold and silver bracelets and rings similar to the ones discovered a few decades ago on the Lower

Evului Mediu, n secolele XI-XII, au fost ridicate aici dou` cet`]i, una pe Dealul prenghi [i cealalt` pe [aua Tmpei, nt`rite cu valuri duble de p`mnt [i palisade de lemn, nalte de aproape 7 m. Ele str`juiau actualul perimetru al ora[ului, unde dovezile arheologice atest` o popula]ie mixt` de romni, slavi [i pecenegi, avnd strnse leg`turi cu spa]iul sud-carpatic. n 1878, o descoperire ntmpl`toare proba aceste leg`turi: la s`parea unei funda]ii de cas` a fost scos la iveal` un tezaur bizantin, datnd din secolul al XII-lea: diademele, br`]`rile [i inelele din aur [i argint sunt similare cu cele descoperite cu cteva decenii n urm` la


Biserica Sfntul Nicolae din cheii Bra[ovului, ntr-o litografie de acum dou` veacuri. Atestat` documentar de o bul` papal` din 1399, care aminte[te existen]a unei biserici ortodoxe n Corona, a fost ridicat` din zid drept ctitorie a voievodului muntean Vlad C`lug`rul, printr-un act din 1495. Preo]ii romni de aici au primit danii n ve[minte, odoare [i c`r]i de la domnitorii munteni [i moldoveni, fiind atesta]i n mai multe documente [i hrisoave ca t`lmaci sau soli ai acestora, ncepnd cu secolul al XV-lea. Cea mai cunoscut` familie de preo]i, slujind aici vreme de [ase genera]ii, familia Tempea, a l`sat o istorie [i o cronic` a acestui l`ca[ de cult, cu un rol esen]ial n p`strarea credin]ei [i identit`]ii romnilor bra[oveni. The Saint Nicholas Church of Scheii Brasovului in a two-century-old lithograph. Attested to by a Papal Bulla from 1399 that mentioned an Orthodox Church at Corona, Wallachian Prince Vlad the Monk rebuilt it in stone as spelled out in the 1495 foundation deed. The Romanian priests here received gifts of canonicals, religious valuables, and books from various Wallachian and Moldavian princes as they often worked as interpreters or messengers, starting with the 15th century. The best known priest family to have served here for six generations is the Tempea. They drew up a history and a chronicle of this religious abode that played such a considerable role in preserving the faith and the identity of Brasov Romanians.


Bastion de ap`rare din zona Por]ii C`ld`rarilor (n cap`tul str`zii Republicii de ast`zi), care asigura intrarea n ora[ dinspre Blum`na. Ridicate n secolul al XIV-lea, ca majoritatea fortifica]iilor ora[ului, zidurile cu bastioanele [i poarta de acces au fost avariate grav n timpul unui cutremur din 1802, fiind demolate n 1857 pentru a l`sa loc unor noi construc]ii. Defense bastion in the area of the Coppersmiths Gate (end of the Republic Street today) securing the entrance into the city from Blumana. Erected in the 14th century just like most of the city fortifications, the walls featuring bastions and an access gate were seriously damaged by the 1802 earthquake, being then demolished in 1857 to make room for new constructions.

Vedere de ansamblu a Bastionului es`torilor, situat n col]ul de sud-vest al ora[ului, a fost ridicat pe cheltuiala [i ap`rat prin grija ]es`torilor din ora[. Atestat documentar din 1522, este cea mai bine p`strat` fortifica]ie a ora[ului, ad`postind ast`zi un muzeu al Bra[ovului medieval. Overall view of the Weavers Bastion, situated in the southwest of the town. It was erected at the expense of and defended by the care of the local weavers. The bastion is attested to 1522, being the best preserved fortification in Brasov, and houses now the towns medieval museum.


Panoram` a Bra[ovului (1851) de pe Drumul Poienii: de la dreapta spre stnga, se v`d Biserica Sfntul Nicolae, Gimnaziul Ortodox (azi, Colegiul Andrei aguna), Biserica Neagr`, Turnul Negru [i Turnul Alb [i, n dep`rtare, fortifica]iile de pe Dealul Cet`]ii. Panorama of Brasov (1851) seen from Poienii Road: from right to left, the Saint Nicholas Church, the Orthodox College (today Andrei Saguna College), the Black Church, the Black Tower, and the White Tower. Far away, the fortifications on the Citadel Hill.

Dun`rea de Jos, n centrul bizantin de la Dinogetia. Regalitatea maghiar` a ntrziat aproape dou` secole s`-[i ntind` suzeranitatea asupra acestor ]inuturi din sud-estul Transilvaniei, r`mase o zon` a trgurilor libere, dup` cum o atest` diploma acordat` de Andrei al II-lea, regele Ungariei, cavalerilor teutoni n 1211. Primele ncerc`ri de colonizare [i catolicizare de la mijlocul secolului al XII-lea au dat gre[, ceea ce a

Danube, Dinogetia.






The Hungarian royalty hesitated for nearly two centuries to stretch its sovereignty over these lands south east of Transylvania, standing as an area of free burgs, a ccording to a diploma granted by Andrew II, the King of Hungary, to the Teutonic Knights in 1211. The first attempts at colonization and Catholicization, dating from the mid 12th century, failed, which


Pl`cerea vederii de sus, chiar dac` nu este vorba de vechiul centru al cet`]ii este posibil` la Bra[ov datorit` n`l]imilor care nconjoar` vechile cartiere ale ora[ului ca un zid protector, dominat de bastionul Tmpei. In Brasov, you can always enjoy a view from above even if it is not of the old center. Mountains, dominated by the Tampa bastion, girdle the old districts.

determinat stabilirea aici a teutonilor, care primeau o serie de privilegii, n schimbul asigur`rii frontierei de sud-est a regatului maghiar. Numele germane pe care ordinul teutonilor le-au dat a[ez`rilor din ara Brsei (Kronen Coroana pentru Bra[ov, Helsdorf pentru H`lchiu, Rosenau devenit R[nov, Nussbach pentru M`ieru[ [.a.) sunt acelea[i cu cele din zona Koblenz, de unde se pare c` proveneau cei mai mul]i cavaleri. nc`lcarea privilegiului, care le interzicea s`-[i

prompted the settlement here of the Teutons. In exchange for a series of privileges, they safeguarded the southeastern frontier of the Hungarian kingdom. The Teutonic Order gave German names to the settlements in the Land of Barsa (Kronen - The Crown for Brasov, Helsdorf - Halciu, Rosenau - Rasnov, Nussbach - Maierus, a.s.o.), identical to those in the Koblenz area, where most of the knights seemingly came from. Encroaching the regulations, which forbade them to erect


Statui care str`juiesc contraforturile Bisericii Negre, construit` ncepnd cu anul 1383. Dup` expresia scriitorului bra[ovean Gheorghe Cr`ciun, aici ncepe [i se termin` Europa. ntr-adev`r, impresionantul monument, devenit emblem` a ora[ului este, n ordine geografic`, ultima catedral` gotic` din partea oriental` a Europei. Statues guarding the buttresses of the Black Church the construction of which began in 1383. As Brasov writer Gheorghe Craciun put it, it is here that Europe begins and ends. This impressive monument, the emblem of the city, is geographically the last Gothic cathedral erected in Eastern Europe.


Bastionul Post`varilor, care ap`ra col]ul de sud-est al cet`]ii Bra[ovului (secolul al XVI-lea), a fost ini]ial ncredin]at spre ap`rare breslei aurarilor, dup` care sarcina ntre]inerii [i ap`r`rii a fost ncredin]at` breslei post`varilor. The Drapers Bastion that defends the southeastern corner of Brasov (16th century) was initially in the care of the local goldsmiths, after which its upkeep was entrusted to the drapers guild.

construiasc` n zon` fortifica]ii de piatr` (a[a cum teutonii au ridicat la Feldioara sau Codlea) a atras alungarea teutonilor din ara Brsei. Bra[ovul nu a fost ocolit de marea n`v`lire a t`tarilor, cnd n martie 1241 un corp din oastea lui Subotai intra n Transilvania pe la Pasul Oituz, f`r` ca secuii condu[i de voievodul Posa s` li se poat` opune. Acela[i cercet`tor german, Alfred Prox, descoperea n 1937 pe Dealul prenghi

stone fortifications in the area (as the Teutons did at Feldioara or Codlea) resulted in their banishment from the Land of Barsa. Brasov was not spared the big Tartar inroad of March 1241, when a part of Subotais army crossed to Transylvania through the Oituz pass, and the Szecklers led by prince Posa failed to stop them. The same German researcher Alfred Prox discovered in 1937 a saddle decoration on the Sprenghi Hill, which he attributed to a Kirghiz

o aplic` de [a, pe care o atribuia unui c`l`re] kirghiz din oastea lui Subotai. ntre timp, ora[ul [i dobndise certificatul de na[tere. Prima sa atestare documentar` cert` o d` abatele Fredericus din Hamborn, care viziteaz` m`n`stirile Transilvaniei n 1235, men]ionnd-o [i pe cea din Dioceza Corona, nu departe de Villa Hermani (Hermannstadt, Sibiu). ntr-adev`r, sub actuala cl`dire a liceului Honterus s-au g`sit urmele unei m`n`stiri de maici, a[ez`mnt care purta numele Curtea Ecaterinei [i fiind foarte probabil chiar cel vizitat de abate la 1235. De acum nainte, izvoarele scrise vorbesc n paralel de Brasso, n documentele maghiare, care preiau vechiul nume al locului, sau Corona n cele germane. Un act din 1399 este dat chiar in oppido de Corona seu vulgariter Brascho nuncupato (n ora[ul numit Corona sau mai popular Brascho). Istoria propriu-zis` a ora[ului ncepe o dat` cu secolul al XIII-lea, cnd teutonii aduc aici coloni[ti sa[i din zona Sibiului. Dup` ce, n 1222, o diplom` regal` interzice a[ezarea n ara Brsei a supu[ilor regali din zonele nvecinate, teutonii colonizeaz` regiunea cu ]`rani adu[i de pe posesiunile lor de pe malul stng al Rinului, din zonele nvecinate ora[ului Koblenz. Coloniz`rile sunt intensificate de regalitatea maghiar` dup` marea n`v`lire t`tar`, cnd spore[te num`rul popula]iei. Astfel, la data atest`rii

horseman in Subotais army. The town had meanwhile acquired a birth certificate. It was first mentioned in a document by abbot Fredericus of Hamborn, who visited Transylvanias monasteries in 1235, and cited the Crown Diocese, not far from Villa Hermani (Hermannstadt, Sibiu). Indeed, traces of a monastery of nuns were discovered under the current building of the Honterus High School. The respective establishment was called Catherines Court and most probably, the abbot visited it in 1235. From that moment on, written sources spoke either of Brasso, in Hungarian documents, or Corona, in German deeds. A parchment dating from 1399 reads that it was issued in oppido de Corona seu vulgariter Brasco nuncupato, that is in the town called Corona or Brascho, in the vernacular. The story of the city proper began in the 13

century when the Teutons brought over Saxon colonists from the area of Sibiu. In 1222, a royal diploma banned the relcoation of subjects to the Crown from the neighboring areas to the land of Barsa. Then the Teutons colonized the region with peasants from their lands on the left bank of the Rhine, in the vicinity of Koblenz. The Hungarian royalty stepped up the colonization after the great Tartar inroad, and consequently the population augmented considerably. At the date when it was attested



documentare, pe teritoriul actual al ora[ului existau cinci mici colonii germane, a cte 30 de gospod`rii, cu un total de 600 de locuitori. Un secol mai trziu, popula]ia ora[ului [i a suburbiilor crescuse: tr`iau aici la grani]ele cre[tin`t`]ii catolice o mul]ime de greci, valahi, bulgari, armeni, n afara zidurilor coloniilor germane din Bartolomeu [i din zona Bisericii Negre. Situarea sa geografic` ntr-un punct de ntret`iere a c`ilor de comunica]ie cu estul [i sudul Carpa]ilor, ca [i mp`mntenirea trgurilor s`pt`mnale de aici a f`cut ca la mijlocul secolului al XV-lea Bra[ovul s` fie socotit deja unul din centrele comerciale importante ale Transilvaniei, avnd peste 6 000 locuitori. Popula]ia se dubleaz` n scurt` vreme. Primele liste de contribuabili de la sfr[itul acestui secol arat` o popula]ie estimat` la 13 000 locuitori, dar foametea, urmat` de cium` n anii 15091510 scade num`rul lor, care pe ntreaga durat` a secolului al XVI-lea r`mne n jur de 10 000 de persoane. Cu toate acestea, n secolele XV-XVI Bra[ovul este ora[ul cu cel mai mare num`r de locuitori din ntreg spa]iul medieval romnesc. Autonomia Bra[ovului a fost c[tigat` [i pecetluit` n 1377, cnd regele Ungariei Ludovic I i confer` spre administrare [i cele 13 comune s`se[ti din ara Brsei n schimbul ridic`rii [i ntre]inerii de c`tre localnici a cet`]ii Branului, ntr-o epoc`

in a document, the town featured five small German colonies with 30 houses each, and a total of 600 inhabitants. A century later, the population in the town and the suburbs had grown: there lived at the limits of Catholic Christianity a host of Greeks, Wallachians, Bulgarians, Armenians, outside the walls of the German colonies of Bartolomeu and the area of the Black Church. Its geographic situation at a crossroads of communication with the east and the south of the Carpathians just like the establishment of weekly fairs, turned 15 century Brasov into one of the most important commercial centers of Transylvania, with over 6000 inhabitants. Its population soon doubled. The first lists of taxpayers dating to the end of this century showed an estimated 13.000 inhabitants. The famine, followed by the pest of 1509-1510 reduced the number so that throughout the 16 century the burg had only 10,000 inhabitants. Nonetheless, in the 15-16 centuries it was the most densely populated town of the entire Romanian medieval space. Brasov won its autonomy in 1377, when Hungarys King, Louis I put the 13 Saxon communes in the Land of Barsa under his administration in exchange for having the inhabitants erect and maintain the city of Bran in a period marked by the threat of Ottoman expansion. At the same prosperous
th th th


Panoram` a Pie]ei Sfatului, de pe Tmpa. n mijloc, dominnd pia]a central`, se distinge fa]` de restul cl`dirilor vechea Cas` a Sfatului, care ad`postea sediul administrativ al Bra[ovului medieval. Panorama of the Council Plaza seen from the Tampa. In the middle, standing out from the rest of the constructions is the old Council House, the administrative headquarters of medieval Brasov.

marcat` de pericolul expansiunii otomane. Tot n aceast` epoc` de prosperitate se ridic` [i fortifica]iile ora[ului, sub supravegherea direct` a regelui Sigismund de Luxemburg, ntre 1395 [i 1427. Sub Iancu de Hunedoara, bra[ovenii primesc chiar drept s` bat` moned` proprie; ntre timp, ora[ul devenise un adev`rat arsenal, me[te[ugarii de aici specializndu-se n f`urirea de arme, inclusiv tunuri, ceea ce a f`cut ca, n genere,

time, the town acquired its fortification works under the direct supervision of King Sigismund of Luxembourg, between 1395 and 1427. Under Iancu of Hunedoara (Hunyadi), the people of Brasov were allowed to mint their own currency. The town had meanwhile become a genuine armory, the craftsmen here specializing in the manufacture of all sorts of weapons, cannons included. This made it that the Hungarian


Bastionul Graft, ridicat n secolul al XV-lea, ap`rat [i ntre]inut pe costurile breslei [elarilor, f`cea leg`tura printr-un pod de lemn ntre Turnul Alb de pe Dealul Str`jii (Warthe) [i incintele de ap`rare ale ora[ului din col]ul s`u nordic. Graft bastion, erected in the 15th century, defended and kept at the expense of the Harness Makers Guild connected, through a wooden bridge, the White Tower on the Guards Hill (Warthe) and the citys defense precincts in the north.

atitudinea regalit`]ii maghiare n raport cu ora[ul s` r`mn` binevoitoare: Bra[ovul era cea mai important` surs` de aprovizionare a armatelor Ungariei. Primele forme de administrare a ora[ului men]ioneaz` n 1342 c` acesta era condus de patru senatori, iar n 1358 este pomenit un jude primar al Bra[ovului. Sigiliul ora[ului, datnd din aceast` perioad`, reprezint` o coroan`, semn al na[terii ora[ului ca o colonie nfiin]at`

Royalty turned a kind eye to Brasov since it was the most important source of supply for the Hungarian armies. The towns first forms of administration included four senators running the settlement in 1342, while in 1358 a mayor judge was recorded. Brasovs seal dating to the respective period featured a crown, the symbol of the citys birth as a colony by the will of the Hungarian royalty. Two centuries later, the crown was


Din vechea arhitectur` a ora[ului s-au p`strat por]iuni care nu au fost modificate de veacuri cum este ancadramentul u[ii [i treptele de acces la o mic` intrare de pe latura de sud-vest a Bisericii Negre. Astfel de por]iuni ale ora[ului, care pot fi descoperite deopotriv` de c`l`tor [i localnic n multe locuri din zona centrului vechi sunt o istorie a locurilor n imagini, deopotriv` pline de for]` [i calme. Parts of the citys old architecture have been preserved unaltered for centuries. For example, the doorframe and the access steps to this small entrance on the southwestern side of the Black Church. Travelers or locals alike may easily discover such gems in the old center area with its air of calm strength.

Detalii ale Bastionului Graft: gur` de foc [i pentru aruncarea smoalei topite. Details of the Graft Bastion: opening for firepower and for throwing molten pitch.


prin voin]a regalit`]ii maghiare. Dou` secole mai trziu, coroana apare a[ezat` pe o r`d`cin`, ca simbol al tr`iniciei, fiind asumat` ca stem` a ora[ului prin scrierile lui Johannes Honterus. Spre sfr[itul veacului al XIV-lea, la 1397, n documente apare [i prima list` complet` a notabilit`]ilor: 16 senatori, ale[i cte patru pentru fiecare cvartal al ora[ului (Portica, Corpus Christi, Catharina [i Petri), un vilic (administrator economic) [i judele ora[ului, iar la 1420 ncepe construirea Casei Sfatului, locul lor de adunare din Pia]a Mare a ora[ului. Un secol mai trziu, comunitatea era condus` de 100 de b`rba]i (centumviri), din rndurile
Imagine interbelic` a aleii [i canalului de Dup` Ziduri. Pe sub arcada de sus]inere a fortifica]iilor se vede Bastionul Graft, cu o por]iune dintr-o mare inscrip]ie care din p`cate nu s-a mai p`strat. Inter-war image of the Alley and the Canal beyond the Walls. Under the arcade supporting the fortification, one can take a glimpse of the Graft Bastion, and part of an inscription unfortunately not preserved entirely.

represented as placed on a root, a token of endurance, and was also assumed as the towns coat-of-arms in the writings of Johannes Honterus. Towards the end of the 14 century, in 1397, documents give a first complete list of the most notable inhabitants of the place: 16 senators, elected by four for each quarter of the city (Portica, Corpus Christi, Catharina and Petri), an economic administrator (vilic), and a county judge. In 1420, the construction began of the Holy Council House, the meeting place in the Big Square. A century later, the community was led by 100 men (centumviri), appointed 25 for each quarter by the magistrate from among the most respectable merchants and craftsmen. Medieval Brasov also had employees of the local administration with very specific jobs: archive workers, guards of the city gates, an arquebusier, a cannon master, an apothecary, an organist for the City Church (the Black Church), a school rector, a chaplain, and, from 1577, a town judge who supervised the prices on the markets, and saw to the application of correct measures. Brasov did not stand out within the conflicts sparked in the Middle Ages, being rather partial to negotiations, as it enjoyed the shelter of its walls, and its need for weapons and money was met by the local craftsmen. That is why episodes such as the

negustorilor [i me[terilor de vaz` numi]i cte 25 pentru fiecare cvartal de c`tre magistrat. Bra[ovul medieval avea [i angaja]i ai administra]iei locale, cu func]ii precise: arhivari, paznici ai por]ilor ora[ului, un archebuzier, un me[ter de tunuri, un farmacist, organistul Bisericii din Cetate (Biserica Neagr`), rectorul [colii, un capelan, iar din 1577 un jude al trgului, care supraveghea mercurialul pie]ei ora[ului [i folosirea unor m`suri corecte. Bra[ovul nu a ie[it n eviden]` n tumultul de conflicte ale Evului Mediu, optnd mai degrab` pentru negocieri, la ad`postul zidurilor ora[ului [i a nevoii de arme sau bani pe care me[te[ugarii s`i o puteau satisface. Tocmai de aceea, episoade


Poarta Catharinei (sau Ecaterinei) este cea mai bine p`strat` poart` de acces n ora[. A fost ridicat` n 1559 pe cheltuiala magistratului Johannes Benkner [i constituia n epoc` principala poart` de acces c`tre ora[ dinspre chei, fiind n centrul unui ansamblu de fortifica]ii care ie[eau n afara zidului de incint`, pn` la [an]urile vechii cet`]i. Catherines Gate is the best preserved access gate in town. It was erected in 1559 at the expense of Judge Johannes Benkner, and at that time it represented the main access way from the Schei. It stood in the middle of an ensemble of fortifications that went beyond the precinct wall, to the citadel moat.


Casa Sfatului a fost men]ionat` pentru prima dat` la 1420. Aici se afla sediul administrativ al ora[ului, fiind men]ionat` drept Praetorium. Actuala nf`]i[are, cu turnul nalt, ridicat n stil baroc, dateaz` din urma unei restaur`ri a cl`dirii de la mijlocul secolului al XVIII-lea, dup` incendiul devastator din aprilie 1689, care a distrus o mare parte a ora[ului. First mentioned in 1420, the Council House was then the administrative heart of the town, known as the Praetorium. In the mid 18th century it was restored and it gained a tower in Baroque style after the devastating fire of 1689, which destroyed most of the town.


Vedere exterioar` [i de incint` din Bastionul es`torilor. Un turn de r`s`rit al bastionului, inscrip]ionat 1573, poate indica anul n care lucr`rile de ridicare a fortifica]iei au fost ncheiate. Forma de ast`zi a Bastionului es`torilor dateaz` de la mijlocul secolului al XVIII-lea. Outer and inner view from the Weavers Bastion. An eastern tower of the bastion, bearing the inscription 1573, can indicate the year when the fortification works were concluded. The present-day shape of the Weavers Bastion dates to the mid 17th century.

Acoperi[uri de ardezie, vechi hornuri [i unica Strad` a Sforii, din apropierea Por]ii chei cea mai ngust` strad` din ora[ele Romniei sunt micile bucurii pe care Bra[ovul le ofer` oricui l prive[te [i caut` s` l n]eleag`. Slate roofs, old chimneys, and the one and only Rope Street, near the Schei Gate, the narrowest street in Romania. These are some of the sights that delight the eye in Brasov.

Pagina urm`toare:

precum expedi]ia de pedepsire a lui Vlad epe[, care a distrus n 1460 suburbiile ora[ului [i i-a tras n ]eap` pe bra[ovenii prizonieri a r`mas n memoria cronicilor s`se[ti din epoc`. n rest, localnicii au servit nu o dat` drept soli sau translatori domnitorilor munteni, ndeletnicindu-se ndeosebi cu spionajul n favoarea uneia sau alteia dintre taberele aflate n confruntare prin aceste p`r]i [i cu furnizarea de arme [i informa]ii cui dorea [i cui pl`tea mai bine. n actele vechi ale ora[ului s-au p`strat chiar

retaliatory expedition of Vlad the Impaler that destroyed the town suburbia in 1460 and impaled the people of Brasov fallen prisoner were diligently inscribed in the Saxon chronicles of the time. The inhabitants served more than once as messengers or translators for Wallachian princes, engaging quite often in espionage to the benefit of one or the other of the camps under confrontation or in the supply of weapons of information to whoever wanted and paid more. The old parchments of the town

Bastionul Graft [i resturile inscrip]iei care vorbea odinioar` despre ridicarea [i ap`rarea sa de c`tre breasla [elarilor, dispus` ntre cele dou` guri de aruncare a smoalei.
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Graft Bastion and what is left of the inscription that once gave the story of how the construction was erected and defended by the Saddler Makers Guild. It is placed between two openings on which molten pitch was thrown.


Cre[tinismul, ntr-un ora[ de frontier` cu lumea barbar`, a[a cum erau percepute de c`tre localnici ]inuturile din sud [i est, aflate sub suzeranitate otoman`, a fost deopotriv` pav`z` [i flamur` pentru bra[oveni. Semnele credin]ei pot fi ntlnite n toate bisericile vechi ale ora[ului. Christianity, in a frontier town surrounded by a barbarian world, as the people in the south and the east, under Ottoman sovereignty were perceived, was the shield and banner of Brasov. Christian tokens can be found in all the citys old churches.


men]iuni ale unor sume de bani pentru iscoadele magistra]ilor, numi]i exploratores, trimi[i acolo unde comas`rile de trupe sau alte ntmpl`ri puteau semnala evolu]ii care s` priveasc` ntr-un fel sau altul soarta ora[ului. Unul dintre ace[ti exploratores pare a fi fost Neac[u din Cmpulung, care n 1521 i trimitea lui Hans Benkner, judele Bra[ovului, un raport am`nun]it al mi[c`rilor otomane la Dun`re, faimoasa scrisoare ce a devenit primul document scris n limba romn`.

mention sums of money paid to spies hired by magistrates, the so-called exploratores sent to places where the stationing of numerous troops or other happenings could trigger off developments concerning, one way or another, the destiny of the city. Such an explorator seems to have been Neacsu of Campulung, who in 1521 send Hans Benkner, the judge of Brasov, a detailed report on the Ottoman movements at the Danube. It is in fact the first document written in Romanian.



Vrsta de aur

The golden age

La ad`postul zidurilor, via]a Bra[ovului [i urma un curs lini[tit. Din zori, o dat` cu deschiderea por]ilor, dinspre suburbii curgeau c`tre pia]a ora[ului negustorii veni]i dinspre Ardeal, Moldova sau Valahia [i, cu prec`dere din zona mai populat` a cheilor, ]`rani cu produse, muncitori cu ziua pe [antierele de construc]ii ale municipalit`]ii sau breslelor, ori n atelierele me[te[ugarilor. La l`sarea serii, nici un str`in de ora[ nu mai putea poposi ntre ziduri, iar forfota ora[ului, muzica, ospe]ele [i jocurile trebuiau s` nceteze [i ele, sub amenin]area amenzilor ustur`toare ale v`tafilor de strad` sau chiar ale judelui. Ponderea n ora[ o aveau nc` de la sfr[itul secolului al XV-lea me[te[ugarii: n 1489 ei reprezentau 37% din popula]ie, grupndu-se pe str`zi. De pild`, strada Republicii de ast`zi era numit` strada C`ld`rarilor, aici aflndu-se mai toate atelierele care produceau vase mari [i vesel` din aram` [i cositor. n cap`tul care d` spre actuala Pia]` a Sfatului, pe locul restaurantului Cerbul Carpatin se aflau att atelierele cizmarilor [i pantofarilor, ct [i sediul breslei lor, iar pe

The life of the town went on smoothly under the protection of its walls. At dawn, when the gates were thrown open, waves of merchants coming from Transylvania, Moldavia or Wallachia would flow into the town square and markets, and especially the popular area of Schei. Peasants with their produce, day workers on the building sites of the municipality or the guilds, or apprentices from the various shops would show up. When night fell no stranger was allowed to remain within the walls, and the tumult of the city, the music, feasts and games had to stop too under the daunting threat of a fine assessed by street militia or by the judge himself. Craftsmen held the biggest share of the towns population starting with the late 15 century. In 1489, they represented 37% of the population, grouped on streets. For instance, todays Republic Street was called the Coppersmiths Street as it harbored most of the workshops that produced by copper and brass vessels, and pots. At the end towards the Council Plaza, on the spot of todays Cerbul Carpatin Restaurant stood the shops of shoemakers and the headquarters of their


actuala strad` B`lcescu se aflau atelierele de t`b`c`rie ale ora[ului. Privilegia]i n aceast` lume a me[te[ugurilor erau aurarii (cei ce prelucrau metalele pre]ioase) [i armurierii, cu deosebire turn`torii bra[oveni de tunuri, me[te[ug atestat ca fiind p`strat din genera]ie n genera]ie de familia Neidel, pn` n secolul al XVIII-lea. Ca m`rturie a calit`]ii m`rfurilor produse la Bra[ov, trebuie men]ionat c` dou` tunuri fabricate la Bra[ov [i jefuite de turci n 1583, cu prilejul unei incursiuni asupra ora[ului, au fost recuperate de austrieci ca prad` de r`zboi, ele
Str`juind ora[ul de pe un pinten de stnc` al Dealului Str`jii (Warthe), Turnul Alb a fost ridicat n a doua jum`tate a secolului al XV-lea. Still guarding the town from a overhang of the Guard Hill (Warthe), the White Tower was erected in the 15th century.

guild, while the citys tanning shops were situated on present-day Balcescu Street. A special position in this world of the crafts was held by goldsmiths who processed rare metals, and by armor makers, in particular the Brasov manufacturers of guns. This trade was attested as being preserved from generation to generation by the Neidel family, until the 18

century. As a symbol of the quality of the goods made in Brasov mention should be made that two cannons crafted in Brasov - still in operation in 1716 - were captured by the Turks in 1583 during a plundering raid over the city, and then recovered by the Austrians as war booty. The statutes of the guilds laid down precise regulations breach of which was punished by substantive fines regarding the quality of the raw materials and the finished products, as well as the education of

fiind nc` n stare de func]ionare, la 1716! De altfel, statutele breslelor impuneau reguli precise, sub pedeapsa unor amenzi substan]iale, privind att calitatea materiei prime [i a produsului finit, ct [i educarea calfelor, sub supravegherea atent` a breslei,


Fiecare ungher din Bra[ov poate deveni pitoresc. R`ceala pietrelor de la ferestrele gotice [i de la contrafor]i face pandant cu petuniile din ghivecele grijuliu aranjate. Every nook in Brasov is picturesque. The cold stone of the Gothic window frames and buttresses is softened by warmly colored petunias carefully arranged in pots.

Ridicat la sfr[itul secolului al XIV-lea pe o stnc` deasupra Bastionului Fierarilor (care ad`poste[te ast`zi sediul Arhivelor Na]ionale din Bra[ov), Turnul Negru, cu zidurile sale nalte de 10 m, domin` ora[ul. Turnul avea rol de ap`rare [i observa]ie, fiind legat cu un pod de lemn de zidurile ora[ului. A fost p`r`sit la sfr[itul secolului al XVIII-lea. Erected at the end of the 14th century on the rock above the Blacksmiths Bastion (today housing the National Archives of Brasov), the Black Tower with its 10m tall walls once towered over the city. Used for defense and observation purposes, the tower was connected by a wooden bridge to the city walls. It was abandoned in the 18th century.


Fortifica]iile de pe Dealul Cet`]ii, a[a cum arat` ast`zi (dup` restaurare [i transformarea lor, la mijlocul anilor 80, n restaurant). Fntn` atestat` din 1623, din interiorul fortifica]iei de pe Dealul Cet`]ii, cu o adncime de 81 m. The Citadel Hill fortifications as they are today (after their restoration in the mid 80s, when a restaurant was opened here). 81 m deep fountain attested to 1623, inside the Citadel Hill fortification.

vreme de patru ani, la finele c`rora un examen practic [i o petrecere consfin]eau trecerea de la stadiul de ucenic la cel de me[ter. Breslele, n func]ie de importan]a lor n economia ora[ului [i de veniturile me[te[ugarilor lor, primeau n administrare [i ntre]inere por]iuni [i bastioane din sistemul de ap`rare al ora[ului, la a c`ror zidire contribuiau cu bani [i for]` de munc`

the apprentices under the careful eye of the guild, for four years, at the end of which a practical exam had to be taken. Then a party further celebrated the apprentice turned master. Function of their importance in the economy of the town, and of the income made by their craftsmen, the guilds received in administration and upkeep parts of and bastions on the defense wall. In exchange, they


Bastioane [i arcuri de sprijin de sub Dealul Str`jii (Warthe), n zona numit` ast`zi Dup` Ziduri. Bastions and flying buttresses under the Guard Hill (Warthe) in the area called today Beyond the Walls.

[i care, n schimb, primeau numele [i dreptul de a purta stema breslei care le avea n grij`. Bastionul es`torilor, cel mai bine p`strat ast`zi dintre acestea ad`poste[te n interior un mic muzeu al me[te[ugurilor, care completeaz` colec]iile muzeului ora[ului din vechea Cas` a Sfatului. Privilegiile comerciale, ad`ugate la calitatea deosebit` a m`rfurilor produse, aduceau [i ele mari beneficii localnicilor. Bra[ovenii au primit n 1408 [i 1412 dreptul de a vinde [i cump`ra cu ridicata [i cu am`nuntul n toate ora[ele

got the name of and bore the coat-of-arms of the respective guilds. The best preserved today is the Weavers Bastion, which houses a small museum of the craftsmen, rounding off the towns collections to be found in the old Council products House. Commercial privileges, huge prompted by the special quality of the manufactured, brought benefits. Between 1408 and 1412 the people of Brasov received the right to buy and sell wholesale and by retail from all the cities of Transylvania. Thus they practically


Turnul Alb, devenit dup` restaurarea sa recent` unul dintre cele mai frumoase monumente ale ora[ului. The White Tower after restoration, one of the most beautiful monuments in town.




subordinated commerce in the other Saxon urban centers, as their commercial privileges opened up to them foreign routes to Moscow and Vladimir in the east, to Hungary and Vienna in the east, to Vidin and the Adriatic in the south and south-east. To say nothing of the special commercial relations with Moldavia and Wallachia: cups, candelabra, candelas or book bindings offered to monasteries by Romanian princes were produced by the master goldsmiths of Brasov,

comer]ul din celelalte centre urbane s`se[ti, n condi]iile n care aveau privilegii comerciale care le-au deschis rute externe pn` la Moscova [i Vladimir n est, Ungaria [i Viena la est, pn` la Vidin [i Marea Adriatic` n sud [i sud-vest, ca s` nu mai vorbim de rela]iile comerciale deosebite cu Moldova [i ara Romneasc`: numeroase cupe, candelabre, candele sau ferec`turi de c`r]i oferite ca danii m`n`stirilor de domnitorii romni au ie[it din minile unor


Procesiune la festivalul Junii Bra[ovului o tradi]ie str`veche Cea mai veche atestare documentar` dateaz` din 26 martie 1728. Procession at the Junii Bra[ovului festival an ancient tradition The oldest document record in which this festival is mentioned is from 26th of March 1728.

me[teri aurari bra[oveni precum cei din familia May, care au lucrat n secolele XVII-XVIII. Centrul comercial al ora[ului se afla n Pia]a Mare (Pia]a Sfatului), unde n 1545 a fost ridicat` Casa de Comer] (col] cu actuala strad` Hirscher, cl`direa se afl` n curs de restaurare).

such as the May family who plied their trade in the 17 and 18 centuries. The towns commercial center stood in the Council Plaza, the Big Plaza, where in 1545 the Trade House was erected (on the corner with Hirscher Street, the building is being restored today).
th th



Ora[ul ntre ra]iune [i istorie

The city between reason and history

Juzii [i magistra]ii ora[ului au acordat o deosebit` aten]ie [colilor [i culturii. nc` din 1388, cnd este amintit Theodoricus, scolarium succentor in Corona, func]iona o [coal` pe lng` Biserica Neagr`, iar n afara zidurilor Bra[ovului, ob[tea romnilor din chei [i-a zidit propria [coal` la 1495, pe ruinele alteia mai vechi, unde predase nv`]`ceilor din 1480 un Gheorghe gr`m`tic. La 1544 ia fiin]` prima [coal` de fete, iar din 1558 apare o [coal` maghiar`. Johannes Honterus, c`rturar, editor, promotor al Reformei, [i-a legat destinul de cel al ora[ului. N`scut n 1498 pe strada Neagr` (azi B`lcescu) la num`rul 40, a studiat la Viena [i a c`l`torit apoi prin Europa, scriind n cursul acestui periplu, pe lng` o gramatic` a limbii latine, [i o Cosmografie (descriere a lumii). n 1532 alc`tuie[te prima hart` a Transilvaniei, iar un an mai trziu se ntoarce acas`, unde pune bazele unei tipografii (la care, pe lng` propriile lucr`ri, tip`re[te scrierile lui Platon, Aristotel, Cicero, Seneca sau Sfntul

The towns judges and magistrates paid special attention to schools and culture. As early as 1388, when we find a mention of Theodoricus, scolarium succentor in Corona, there existed a school near the Black Church, while outside the city walls the Romanian community of Schei founded its own school in 1495, on the ruins of an older one where a grammarian called Gheorghe had taught his pupils in 1480.The first school for girls was set up in 1544, and in 1558 a Hungarian one was opened. The name of Johannes Honterus, scholar, printer, and promoter of the Reform is closely connected to this town. Born in 1498 at 40, Neagra Street (Balcescu today), he studied in Vienna and traveled then throughout Europe. During his tour, he wrote a Latin grammar and a Cosmographia (description of the world). In 1532, he drew up the first map of Transylvania and a year later he returned home where he laid the foundations of the first printing house. Besides his own works,


Statuia lui Johannes Honterus, ridicat` n 1898 fa]a liceului german care i poart` numele, pe latura sudic` a Bisericii Negre. Cl`direa actual` a liceului este ridicat` pe locurile unde se aflau biblioteca [i [coala ctitorite de marele umanist, care au fost distruse n marele incendiu din 1689, fiind ref`cute dup` 1743 n actuala form`. Statue of Johannes Honterus, erected in 1898 on the southern side of the Black Church, in front of the German High School bearing the scholars name. The present-day construction takes the place of a former library and school. These foundations laid by the great humanist were destroyed by a fire in 1689, and rebuilt after 1743 as they are today.

Uneori, vechile case ale ora[ului, precum cea din imagine (aflat` n fa]a Liceului aguna, spre strada Constantin Brncoveanu) se simt strivite de arhitectura ndr`znea]` a timpurilor moderne. The old houses in town, like the one in the photo (situated in front of the Saguna High School, to Constantin Brancoveanu Street) feel crushed by the daring architecture of the modern epoch.

Augustin). n 1541, cu sprijinul conducerii ora[ului, a ntemeiat o [coal` de renume, cu 126 studen]i, dintre care o parte plecau [apte ani mai trziu s`-[i continue studiile n str`in`tate. n 1547, Honterus nfiin]a [i prima bibliotec` public` din Transilvania, cu o colec]ie impresionant` de c`r]i. La pu]in timp dup` moartea lui, sosea la Bra[ov diaconul Coresi ot Trgovi[te, care a nceput o ampl` activitate tipografic`, sus]inut` de comenzi de carte venite din

he would print writings by Plato, Aristotle, Cicero, Seneca, and Saint Augustine. In 1541, with the support of the towns leaders, a renowned school was founded, with 126 students. Part of them left Brasov after seven years to further their education abroad. In 1547, Honterus established the first public library of Transylvania, housing an impressive number of books. Shortly after his death, dean Coresi ot Targoviste arrived at Brasov and began an ample


Sediul Bibliotecii Jude]ene, care poart` numele c`rturarului [i revolu]ionarului pa[optist bra[ovean George Bari]iu. The County Library bears the name of the 1848 scholar and revolutionary from Brasov, George Baritiu.





printing activity, mostly orders placed by the Brasov judge, Johannes Benkner, and also by Wallachian princes. Between 1557 and 1583, he printed 17 titles in Romanian and Old Church Slavonic on paper manufactured at Brasov in a workshop owned by the judge and set up in 1546. A century later the books of dean Coresi were already deemed rarities, their price growing five to six times. The schools, the library, and the books made the fame of the place,

Benkner, dar [i a domnitorilor munteni. ntre 1557 [i 1583, tip`re[te 17 titluri n romn` [i slavon`, pe hrtie fabricat` ntr-o manufactur` bra[ovean`, proprietate a judelui, nfiin]at` n 1546. C`r]ile diaconului Coresi aveau s` fie socotite o raritate deja un veac mai trziu, pre]ul lor crescnd de cinci[ase ori. colile, c`r]ile [i biblioteca au dus faima locurilor, al`turi de produsele me[te[ugarilor. n 1564, un c`l`tor italian


Deasupra acoperi[urilor caselor din centrul vechi se nal]`, altfel greu de observat de aproape, cupola bisericii romano-catolice din Strada V`mii, proiectat` de arhitectul Iosif Carl Lamasch la finele secolului al XVIII-lea, dup` moda baroc` a timpului. On Customs Street, there rises the dome (noticeable only from a distance) of the Roman-Catholic Church designed by architect Iosif Carl Lamasch at the end of the 18th century in the Baroque fashion of the time.

vedea Bra[ovul drept cel mai nfloritor dintre toate ora[ele transilvane, avnd [i o foarte pre]uit` [coal` pentru toate artele libere, cu o bogat` colec]ie de c`r]i, care poate sta al`turi de cele mai vestite biblioteci. De la nceputul secolului al XVII-lea, pacea intern` a a[ez`rii, p`strat` cu inteligen]` diplomatic` n raport cu puternicii vremurilor din afara zidurilor sale pare a se spulbera. Adep]i n mas` ai

alongside the products manufactured here. In 1564, an Italian traveler perceived Brasov as the most flourishing of all the Transylvanian cities, with a quite remarkable school for all the free arts, and a rich collection of books that can vie with the most famous libraries. At the turn of the 17 century, the domestic peace of the settlement, concluded diplomatically with the powerful of the day outside the walls of the city,


Instantanee n centrul vechi al ora[ului In the old center of the town

Ridicat dup` 1460, Turnul Alb, impozant` fortifica]ie exterioar` a ora[ului, a fost ncredin]at spre paz` [i ap`rare breslelor cositorarilor [i ar`marilor. Restaurarea recent` i-a redat forma pe care o avea dup` ultima sa reconstruc]ie din 1723. Erected after 1460, the White Tower, an impressive exterior fortification served to defend and protect the guilds of tinsmiths and coppersmiths. Recent restoration works returned it to the looks of 1723, when it had first been reconstructed.

Biserica Neagr`, dup` recentele lucr`ri de restaurare [i consolidare. n plan apropiat, statuile de pe contrafor]ii laturii nordice. The Black Church after recent restoration and consolidation works. In the foreground, the buttresses on the northern side.

Reformei lui Luther, gra]ie scrierilor lui Honterus [i n special a lucr`rii Reforma bisericii bra[ovene [i din toat` ara Brsei, volum publicat n 1542, sa[ii bra[oveni nu puteau r`mne n afara marilor confrunt`ri religioase ale timpului [i n special n fa]a ofensivei catolice a Imperiului Habsburgic. n 1603, generalul imperial Basta, pretextnd c` negustorii bra[oveni ar fi pactizat cu turcii, instala n fruntea ora[ului un guvernator imperial, n persoana lui Jaques

began to vanish. Adepts en masse of Luthers Reform, owing to the writings of Honterus and especially to the work The Reform the Church of Brasov and of all the Land of Barsa, a volume published in 1542, the Brasov Saxons could not stay out of the big religious confrontation of the time, and especially of the Hapsburg Empires Catholic offensive. In 1603, imperial general Basta under pretext that the merchants of Brasov had made a pact with


Baurin, unul dintre valonii care l-au asasinat la Cmpia Turzii pe Mihai Viteazul. Acesta a st`pnit aici n mod neru[inat [i arogant, s`vr[ind multe samavolnicii, care au luat sfr[it dup` un an, cnd magistratul ora[ului [i-a rec`p`tat autoritatea, dar precedentul era creat: n 1688 Bra[ovul era cedat suzeranit`]ii habsburgice de c`tre Dieta de la F`g`ra[, al`turi de alte localit`]i pierdute n favoarea acesteia de Principatul Transilvaniei. tirea a provocat r`scoala bra[ovenilor, care pn` atunci cunoscuser` deja binefacerile imperiale sub forma unor contribu]ii de peste 100 000 florini pentru ntre]inerea armatelor Vienei. La 12 mai 1688, nemul]umirile au izbucnit, cu toate ncerc`rile magistra]ilor bra[oveni de a domoli spiritele. R`zvr`ti]ii au impus o nou` conducere a ora[ului [i au ocupat arsenalul cet`]ii. Zece zile mai trziu, trupele habsburgice, ajunse la por]ile ora[ului, au trecut la cucerirea lui, cinci conduc`tori ai revoltei, n frunte cu me[terul aurar Kaspar Kreisch, ales de r`scula]i jude primar, fiind decapita]i n Pia]a Sfatului. Un an mai trziu, la 21 aprilie 1689, o alt` nenorocire se ab`tea asupra Bra[ovului: un incendiu de propor]ii a distrus n cteva ore cea mai mare parte a sa, ad`ugndu-se ocupa]iei papista[ilor imperiali. Via]a ora[ului n secolele Evului Mediu este de altfel pres`rat` de calamit`]i, epidemii [i episoade r`zboinice care tulbur` nu o dat`

the Turks, placed at the head of the burg an imperial governor, Jacques Baurin, one of the Walloons who assassinated prince Michael the Brave on the Turzii Plain. He ruled the place shamelessly and arrogantly, committing a host of felonies that ended only after a year, when the town judge resumed his authority. But a precedent had been set. In 1688, Brasov was ceded to the Hapsburgs by the Fagaras Diet, alongside other localities lost by the Principality of Transylvania. The news sparked an uprising of the Brasov people, fed up with imperial advantages, such as paying contributions of over 100.000 florins to keep the armies of Vienna. On May 12, 1688, unrest broke out despite the attempts of the Brasov magistrates to calm spirits. The rebels established a new city leadership and took the city arsenal. In ten days, the Hapsburg troops reached to gates of the town and began to storm it. Five heads of the revolt, led by master goldsmith Kaspar Kreisch, whom the rebels had elected mayor judge, were beheaded in the Council Plaza. A year later, on April 21, 1689 another misfortune befell Brasov: to boot the occupation of the Hapsburgs, a big fire destroyed most of the town in a matter of hours. The towns life in the Middle Ages was fraught with such calamities, epidemics and






war episodes that often troubled the peace of its merchants and craftsmen. A first pest epidemic was attested in documents dating from 1495. This scourge hit the town repeatedly. To mention only the epidemics of 1553-1554, 1603 and 1604, culminating with the big plague of 1660, when Judge Michael Hermann and the town physician also died. Some of the victims of this epidemic were buried out of town, beyond the Lepers Bridge (at the junction of Castani and Iuliu Maniu Streets, which to

me[te[ugarilor bra[oveni. O prim` epidemie de cium` este semnalat` de documente n 1495. Ora[ul a fost lovit n numeroase rnduri de acest flagel, r`mnnd n anale epidemiile din 1553-1554 [i 1603-1604, culminnd n 1660 cu ciuma cea mare, cnd chiar judele Michael Hermann [i
Bra[ovul ntr-o stamp` din secolul al XVII-lea Brasov in a print from the 17 century

medicul ora[ului au murit. O parte dintre victimele acestei din urm` epidemii au fost ngropate n afara ora[ului, dincolo de Podul Lepro[ilor (pe locul n care se intersecteaz`


Bra[ovul ntr-o stamp` de la nceputul secolului al XIX-lea n plan apropiat se v`d Biserica Neagr` [i biserica reformat` din strada irul V`mii. Brasov in a print from the early 19th century In close-up the Black Church and the reformed Church on Customs Street.

strada Castanilor cu strada Iuliu Maniu, loc care a r`mas pn` ast`zi cu numele de Ceasul r`u). Cutremurele produc [i ele mai mult spaim` dect daune, cele mai mari dintre acestea aducnd uneori nsemnate stric`ciuni Bisericii Negre, n`ruind unele dintre bastioane [i por]iuni din zidul de ap`rare al ora[ului. Incendiile, relativ frecvente n ora[ele medievale, r`mn n memoria colectiv` a bra[ovenilor prin dimensiunile pagubelor provocate. Marele incendiu din

this day has preserved the nickname of Evil Hour.) Earthquakes also caused much fear and damage, several shattering the Back Church, crumbling one of the bastions, and parts of the towns defense walls. Fires, relatively frequent in medieval towns, also stayed in the memory of Brasov people through the damage inflicted. Thus the big fire of 1689 destroyed the valuable library of Johannes Honterus of which only 26 volumes could be saved, as well as the interior and


nceput` n anul 1383, pe locul unei biserici n stil romanic, construc]ia bisericii a continuat pn` n 1477. Incendiat` n anul 1668, biserica a p`strat urmele dezastrului pn` la restaurarea din secolul al XX-lea. Fotografie nainte de restaurare. The construction of the church began in 1383, replacing a Roman style religious abode. The works lasted till 1477. In 1668, it caught fire, and traces of the conflagration could be seen until its 20th century restoration. Photograph taken before the restoration.

Interiorul bisericii Sfnta Maria, cunoscut` ulterior drept Biserica Neagr` The interior of the Saint Mary Church, subsequently known as the Black Church

1689 de pild`, a distrus att valoroasa bibliotec` a lui Johannes Honterus, din care s-au salvat abia 26 volume, ct [i interiorul [i exteriorul Bisericii din Cetate, r`mas` pentru mult` vreme o ruin` nnegrit` [i pentru todeauna cu numele de Biserica Neagr`.

exterior of the Citadel Church, for a long time left a scorched ruin and then for ever after bearing the name of the Black Church.



Oamenii de dincolo de ziduri

The people beyond the walls

Dincolo de poarta Ecaterinei, n cartierul romnesc al cheilor Bra[ovului, s-a dezvoltat n timp o puternic` comunitate romneasc`. Avnd chiar [i o [coal` proprie din 1495, ridicat` cu temelii de piatr` pe locul uneia mai vechi din lemn, romnii nu erau accepta]i n ora[ dup` l`sarea ntunericului [i nu-[i puteau ridica locuin]e sau biserici n interiorul zidurilor. Cartierul romnesc se dezvoltase n jurul unei vechi biserici de lemn, atestat` documentar de o bul` papal` din 1399 [i ctitorit` cu temelii de piatr` n 1495, de c`tre Vlad C`lug`rul, domnitor al `rii Romne[ti. O lung` serie de domnitori munteni [i chiar Aron-Vod` al Moldovei fac numeroase danii acestui a[ez`mnt, al`turi de familiile nst`rite ale negustorilor greci (aromni) [i romni din partea locului. Din 1735, romnii bra[oveni ncep s` cear`, prin memorii, dreptul la propria administrare, iar discriminarea lor n raport cu locuitorii din interiorul cet`]ii este par]ial nl`turat` n 1782, cnd prin Edictul de toleran]`, mp`ratul Iosif al II-lea le permite s` se stabileasc` n ora[, dar

Beyond the Ecaterina Gate, in the Romanian district of Scheii Brasovului, a powerful Romanian community took shape. With their own school founded in stone on the place of an older, wooden one, the Romanians were not accepted in town after dark and could not build houses or churches within the precincts. Their district had developed around an old wooden church, attested by a Papal Bulla of 1399 and erected in stone in 1495 by Vlad the Monk, Prince of Wallachia. Several Wallachian rulers and also Prince Aron of Moldavia donated numerous valuables to this abode, just like the well-off families of Greek (MacedoRomanian) and Romanian merchants in the area. As of 1735, the Romanians of Brasov began to draw up memorandums asking for the right to self-administration. Their discrimination, as compared to the inhabitants of the town proper, was partly eliminated in 1782, when under the Tolerance Edict, Emperor Joseph II allowed them to settle in the city but only if they bought houses, and thus acquired citizen


Poarta Ecaterinei, v`zut` dinspre interiorul zidurilor Vechile fortifica]ii din preajma ei au fost demolate dup` 1926, pentru a face loc unor construc]ii ntr-o epoc` n care mai multe ruine ale Coronei medievale au c`zut prad` Bra[ovului modern. Caterinas Gate seen from within the walls The old fortifications surrounding it were demolished in 1926, to make room for new constructions at a time when several ruins of the Medieval Crown fell prey to modern architecture.

numai prin cump`rare de case, [i s` dobndeasc` astfel [i dreptul de a deveni cet`]eni ai Bra[ovului. Conscrip]iile din a doua jum`tate a secolului al XVIII-lea ofer` date [i n leg`tur` cu raporturile etnice din ora[. Astfel, dintr-un total de 13 782 contribuabili nregistra]i n 1761, 5 665 erau romni, 7 170 germani, 717 maghiari [i 230 de alt neam. n 1849, procentul romnilor avea s` se men]in` nsemnat: 7 984, fa]` de

rights in Brasov. A roster from the latter half of the 18 century provides data on the ethnic relations in the city. Thus, of a total of 13.782 tax payers registered in 1761, 5665 were Romanians, 7.170 Germans, 717 Hungarian, and 230 of other nationalities. In 1849, the percentage of Romanians still remained high: 7.984 as to 8.775 Germans and 2.382 Hungarians. Next to Romanians, the town also featured another important


Veche fotografie a Por]ii chei, construit` ntre 1827-1828, pentru a u[ura accesul spre ora[ din cartierul romnesc, ridicat` cu contribu]ia financiar` a negustorilor [cheieni. Old photograph of the Schei Gate, built by the financial contribution of Schei merchants, between 1827 and 1828, to facilitate access from the Romanian district into town.

8 775 germani [i 2 382 maghiari. Al`turi de romni, n ora[ exista o important` comunitate de negustori aromni, printre primii a[eza]i n cetate dup` decretul imperial care permitea cump`rarea de case n ora[ [i stabilirea ntre zidurile sale [i a altor cet`]eni dect sa[ii. Printre ei s-a num`rat [i cunoscutul Hagi Constantin Pop, ca [i familiile Orghidan, Ioanovici, Ciurcu [i Nica, ai c`ror urma[i, oameni de cultur`,

colony, that of Macedo-Romanian merchants who had been among the first to settle in town, after the imperial decree had allowed other than Saxons to purchase houses within the precincts. Among them mention should be made of the well-known Hagi Constantin Pop, of the Iorghidan, Ioanovici, Ciurcu and Nica families whose descendants, men of culture, editors and leaders of the national movement animated the life of the city. It



editori [i lideri ai mi[c`rii na]ionale, au fost prezen]e vii n via]a ora[ului. Nu doar num`rul mare, ci mai ales calitatea intelectual` a genera]iei pa[optiste a romnilor bra[oveni, sprijini]i de marile familii de negustori de aceea[i credin]`, au adus n prim-planul evenimentelor tumultoase de atunci personalit`]i ca George Bari]iu, fondatorul la 1838 a Gazetei Transilvaniei [i a Foii pentru minte, inim` [i literatur`, primele periodice romne[ti din Ardeal, [i fra]ii Iacob [i Andrei Mure[anu. Ei au transformat ora[ul ntr-o veritabil` capital` a revolu]iei transilvane. Afirmarea na]iunii romne a continuat n deceniile urm`toare revolu]iei de la 1848, pn` la mplinirea visului Unirii. Un bra[ovean din epoc`, pictorul sas Adolf Meschendorfer, ncheia astfel romanul s`u autobiografic Corona: tr`im la un loc cu [i mai mul]i
Palatul Po[tei The Post Palace

was not only the big number but especially the intellectual quality of the 1848 generation of Brasov Romanians, supported by the great families of merchants of the same faith that brought to the fore, during those hectic times, personalities such as George Baritiu, founder, in 1838, of the Gazette of Transylvania and of the Sheet for the mind, heart and for literature, the first Romanian periodicals in Transylvania. Or the Iacob and Andrei Muresianu brothers, who turned the town into a genuine capital of the Transylvanian revolution.? The Romanian nation continued to assert itself after the 1848 revolution, until the Union dream was fulfilled. A Brasov character, Saxon painter Adolf Mechendorfer concluded thus his autobiographic novel, The Crown: We live alongside ever more Romanians. They make slow but tenacious strides, they eat polenta and cheese, they bring children into this world without a care and because their labor is cheaper they win the competition against Hungarians and Saxons, who are more demanding. Their Orthodox Church surrounds them like a protective wall we have known this movement for centuries. Other flags are being taken out, another language has become more important overnight. On December 1, 1918, a hundred thousand Romanian peasants got together and, shedding streams of merry tears they solemnly proclaimed the union with the

romni. nainteaz` peste tot ncet, dar tenace, m`nnc` m`m`lig` cu brnz`, aduc f`r` grij` copii pe lume [i din cauz` c` mna lor de lucru e mai ieftin`, c[tig` din concuren]a cu maghiarii [i cu sa[ii, care sunt mai preten]io[i. Biserica lor ortodox` i nconjoar` ca un zid de ap`rare. Cunoa[tem de secole aceast` mi[care. Alte steaguri sunt scoase la iveal`, alt` limb` devine peste noapte cea mai important`. La 1 decembrie 1918, la Alba-Iulia se adun` 100 000 de ]`rani romni, proclam` n mijlocul

Colegiul Andrei aguna, ridicat ntre 1851 [i 1856 dup` planurile arhitectului tefan Emilian. The Andrei Saguna College built between 1851 and 1856 on the designs of architect Stefan Emilian.


Biserica Ortodox` Sfntul Nicolae construit` din ini]iativa viitorului domnitor Neagoe Basarab a fost, dup` multe avataruri, terminat` n 1738. Cimitirul din curtea bisericii st` m`rturie despre genera]iile de romni care au tr`it n cartierul chei unul dintre cele mai vechi cartiere ale Bra[ovului. After considerable mishaps, the Saint Nicholas Orthodox Church, founded by Prince Neagoe Basarab, was finished in 1738. The cemetery in the church yard testifies to generations upon generations of Romanians who lived in the Schei district, one of the oldest of Brasov.


Statuia diaconului Coresi (1510-1581), traduc`tor [i me[ter tipograf. A fost chemat de la Trgovi[te de Hanes Begner din Bra[ov pentru a tip`ri c`r]i romne[ti. Muzeul Primei coli Romne[ti, din incinta Bisericii Sfntul Nicolae (cheii Bra[ovului). Statue of deacon Coresi (1510-1581), translator and printer. Hanes Begner of Brasov called him to Trgoviste to print Romanian books. The museum of the first Romanian School within the Saint Nicholas Church (Scheii Brasovului).

lacrimilor de bucurie unirea cu ]ara-mam` [i se oblig` solemn fa]` de fra]ii lor maghiari [i sa[i s` le acorde toate acele drepturi dup` care ei n[i[i suspinaser` secole de-a rndul.

motherland, and before their Hungarian and Saxon brothers they promised solemnly to grant them the same rights for which that they had been pining for centuries on end.



Pre]ul modernit`]ii

The price-tag of modernity

n anii epocii moderne [i ai perioadei interbelice, chipul Bra[ovului se schimb` cu ncetul, f`r` a-[i pierde ns` tr`s`turile sale esen]iale: casele mai degrab` austere, strnse una ntr-alta de jur-mprejurul Pie]ii Sfatului, a Bisericii Negre [i pe str`zile centrului vechi au r`mas cu acela[i aer care inspir` ordine [i austeritate, sa[i, potrivit spiritului vechilor constructorii

In the years of the modern age, as well as in the inter-war period, the looks of Brasov gradually changed without losing any of its essential traits: the rather austere houses, cuddled together around the Council Plaza, the Black Church and the streets of the old center that exude an orderly air, befitting the spirit of the ancient Saxons, the founders and builders of the town. In the 19 century some of the constructions were pulled down, others were either elevated or enlarged, their inner yards being taken up by new rooms, occupying almost all the available space of the former gardens. Few monuments preserve today the characteristics of the Renaissance as they have been altered and remade. To mention only the Hirscher House, the current Cerbul Carpatin Complex in the Council Plaza, practically built anew in 1857. Only a few door and window frames are left of the initial architecture as well as the Hirscher coat-of-arms dating to 1545. This is above all the outcome of the great 1689 fire when most of the houses in the citadel were reconstructed according to the fashion of the

ntemeietori ai ora[ului. n veacul al XIX-lea, unele cl`diri dispar, sau [i schimb` nf`]i[area, fiind n`l]ate [i l`rgite, ocupnd cur]ile interioare cu noi nc`peri, pn` aproape la umplerea tuturor spa]iilor libere ale vechilor gr`dini. Pu]ine monumente mai p`streaz` tr`s`turile Rena[terii, fiind modificate [i ref`cute. Printre acestea se num`r` [i Casa Hirscher, actualul local al Cerbului Carpatin din Pia]a Sfatului, practic reconstruit` n 1857: din arhitectura ini]ial` au r`mas cteva ancadramente de u[i [i ferestre, stema veche a ora[ului [i blazonul familiei Hirscher din 1545. Acesta este n primul rnd rezultatul marelui incendiu din 1689, dup` care casele din cetate au fost


Cl`dire ale c`rei fastuase decora]ii fac din fa]ad` o bijuterie baroc` Sumptuous decorations turn this facade into a Baroque gem

reconstruite influen]a



vremii, ns`

sub la

time, with a Baroque touch adapted to the more severe local taste. This is basically visible in the style of most of the buildings, deprived of the abundance of exterior decoration specific for the respective trend. Starting from the latter half of the 19



austeritatea local`, predominant` [i vizibil` n stilul majorit`]ii construc]iilor, lipsite de abunden]a de decora]iuni exterioare caracteristice stilului. ncepnd cu a doua

Pagina urm`toare:

Casa Bahmuller (1906), situat` n Strada Republicii la nr. 16.

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jum`tate a veacului al XIX-lea, ora[ul medieval nu mai poate rezista n fa]a istoriei, bra[ovenii ncepnd s` d`rme ceea ce construiser` genera]iile din urm`, pentru a face loc unei popula]ii din ce n ce mai

century, the medieval city could no longer cope with history as the inhabitants began to demolish what previous generations had erected in order to make room for an ever growing population, for more and more

The Bahmuller House (1906), situated at 16, Republic Street.


Vedere a Bra[ovului la nceputul secolului al XX-lea, dinspre Drumul Poienii. n dreapta, n plan apropiat, Casa Baiulescu. Brasov in the early 20th century seen from Poienii Road. On the right, in the foreground, the Baiulescu House.

numeroase [i a unor ateliere, antrepozite [i magazine din ce n ce mai mari. Primele victime ale moderniz`rii sunt zidurile vechi ale cet`]ii, spulberate practic pe por]iuni mari de aceast` extindere. Fortifica]iile care m`rgineau ora[ul spre nord, aflate n cap`tul dinspre actuala Prefectur` cu al str`zii poarta Republicii, mpreun`

numerous workshops, storehouses and shops. The first to fall victim to modernization were the old walls of the city, practically blown up in considerable part. The fortifications which surrounded the town in the north, at the end of the Republic Street to the Prefects House, together with the Purzengasser Gate, in the area of the presentday Coroana hotel were demolished in 1857. The same happened twenty years later to the Gate on the Black Street, where today stands

Purzengasser, din zona n care ast`zi este Hotelul Coroana, au fost demolate n 1857. Aceea[i soart` au avut-o peste dou` decenii


Poarta Str`zii Negre, de pe locul n care ast`zi se afl` magazinul Star [i Poarta Trgului Cailor, de pe strada Gheorghe Bari]iu, n cap`tul dinspre chei. n 1891, cnd n ora[ este introdus tramvaiul cu aburi este demolat` [i marea Poart` a V`mii din dreptul actualei cl`diri a Rectoratului, la cap`tul nordic al str`zii Mure[enilor, care secole de-a rndul fusese principala poart` de acces n ora[ a c`l`torilor sau localnicilor ntor[i din peregrin`ri. Singurele por]i r`mase n picioare sunt Poarta cheilor [i Poarta Ecaterinei, care desp`r]eau vechea cetate a sa[ilor de cartierul romnesc, precum [i turnurile de ap`rare din exterior dinspre Dealul Stejeri[, Turnul Negru [i Turnul Alb. Au r`mas neschimbate pn` ast`zi zidurile [i vechile bastioane de ap`rare ale ora[ului de la poalele Tmpei, care p`streaz` intact vechiul spirit al locului.
Veche panoram` a str`zii irul V`mii (azi Mure[enilor), cu biserica reformat` n prim-plan Old panorama of the Sirul Vamii (Muresenilor today) Street, with the Reformed Church in the foreground

the Star Supermarket and the Horse Fair Gate on Gheorghe Baritiu Street, the Schei corner. In 1891, with the introduction of the steam tramway, the big Customs Gate, in front of the current Rectors building, on the northern end of the Mureseni Street, was also pulled down. For centuries, it had been the citys gate of access to for travelers or inhabitants who returned from their journeys. The only gates still standing are Scheilor and Ecaterinei that once separated the old city of the Saxons from the Romanian district, as well as the outer defense tower close to the Stejaris Hill, the Black and White Towers. Unchanged to this day have remained the walls and the old defense bastions at the foot of the Tampa Hill, which preserve intact the spirit of the place. In fact, the atmosphere of the entire town still has something magic about it. Old lithographs, prints, photos, and a big-scale mockup made in 1896 by Friedrich Hermann mirror this even better. The piece is sheltered by the museum within the Weavers Bastion, and it renders the 17 century likeness of the town.

Imaginea de alt`dat` a ora[ului nu s-a pierdut nici ea. Ne-o redau vechi litografii, stampe, fotografii [i o machet` de mari dimensiuni, realizat` n 1896 de Friedrich Hermann, care se p`streaz` n muzeul din incinta Bastionului es`torilor [i red` chipul a[ez`rii, a[a cum ar`ta el n veacul al XVII-lea.



Ora[ul con[tiin]elor

The city of consciences

Bra[ovul nu este doar ora[ul Bisericii Negre, ci [i locul n care, n tumultul revolu]iei pa[optise, s-au auzit pentru prima oar` versurile imnului De[teapt`-te, romne!, compus de Andrei Mure[anu. Peste un secol [i jum`tate, la finele regimului comunist, cntecul redevenise interzis, a[a cum fusese n anii absolutismului austroungar, ntr-un ora[ ai c`rui locuitori erau mpin[i la limita de jos a supravie]uirii. n aliment`ri nu se mai g`seau dect picioare de porc, conserve de maz`re, ap` mineral` medicinal`, o]et [i creve]i vietnamezi; hrana era drastic ra]ionalizat`, de parc` ora[ul se afla sub asediu sau n vremea unei epidemii de cium`, precum cele de cteva secole n urm`. La nceputul anului 1987, ra]iile constau n 0,5 kg carne de porc cu os [i gr`sime, dar [i aceea de neg`sit, 600 grame mezeluri, un pachet de unt mic, de 125 gr, 0,7 l ulei, 1 kg de zah`r, un pui (de fapt, dou` pungi de pui pentru toat` familia, pentru c` puii din anii socialismului nc`peau cte doi ntr-o pung`). Popula]ia nfometat` a ora[ului st`tea la coad` la chiftelu]e de pe[te, cu garnitur` de piure

Brasov is not only the town of the Black Church but also the place when during the 1848 revolution the words of the anthem Awaken Thee, Romanian!, composed by Andrei Muresianu were first heard. After a century and a half, towards the twilight of the communist age, the revolutionary song was banned just like in the years of AustroHungarian absolutism, in this city where the inhabitants were pushed to the limit of mere survival. The food stores in Brasov were practically empty. All one could find were trotters, canned peas, mineral water for medicinal purposes, vinegar, and Vietnamese shrimp chips. With food so drastically limited the city seemed under siege or afflicted by a pest epidemic as centuries before. Early in 1987 monthly rations consisted of half a kilo of pork, bones and lard included (even so very hard to find), 600 grams of salami, 125 grams of butter, 0.7 l of cooking oil, one kilo of sugar, one chicken (actually two bags including four tiny socialist-grown chicks). The citys famished population would queue up for fish balls with mashed potatoes (flakes), coming in


Bra[ovul, pe vremea cnd se numea ora[ul Stalin Brasovul at the time when it was called Stalin City

din fulgi de cartofi, servite pe t`vi]e de carton, dar nu mai mult de dou` por]ii pentru o persoan`. Banii astfel economisi]i erau utiliza]i la ciopr]irea vechiului chip al a[ez`rii, n baza unui a[a-zis proiect de sistematizare, care amenin]a distrugerea a ceea ce mai r`m`sese neatins din anii ora[ului Stalin, cum s-a numit Bra[ovul n primul deceniu al regimului comunist. Atta vreme ct vechiul ora[ Kronstadt (Corona) a purtat numele lui Stalin, parc` nimic nu se putea ntmpla la poalele Tmpei. Localnicilor

little cardboard trays, not more than two servings per person. The money thus saved was used to further mutilate the old settlement following a so-called cityscaping plan that threatened to turn to ruin all that was left of Brasov, or Stalin City, as it was called for more than ten years in the early communist regime. Bearing such a name, it seemed as if nothing could enliven the settlement at the foot of the Tampa. Its inhabitants dreaded that everything would stay for ever gray and hostile, the only thing of value being the past. Stalin City was


Blocuri muncitore[ti din cartierul Steagul Ro[u [i gara central` a ora[ului n anii construirii socialismului. Workers blocks-of-flats in the Red Banner District and the citys railway station in the years of socialist construction.


li se p`rea c` totul va r`mne ve[nic cenu[iu [i du[m`nos, iar singurul lucru care mai avea pre] n via]a lor era trecutul. Ora[ul Stalin ncepea s` se dezvolte parc` nefiresc: avioanele nu mai erau avioane, ci tractoare, ardelenii nu mai erau ardeleni, iar cartierele muncitore[ti, similare unor ghetouri, ocupau fiecare margine a ora[ului. La sfr[itul deceniului 50, cnd despre Stalin nu mai vorbeau cu emo]ie nici m`car comuni[tii romni, Bra[ovului i s-a permis s`-[i reia numele. Singurele evenimente care r`sturnau via]a politic` [i social` a noului ora[ industrial r`mneau vizitele fulger ntreprinse de Gheorghiu-Dej, apoi de cuplul Ceau[escu. Pn` ntr-o zi din toamna anului 1987. 15 noiembrie 1987 nu a fost o zi obi[nuit` pentru comuni[ti. Aveau loc alegeri, steagurile partidului colorau n ro[u str`zile, iar mesele festive erau deja ntinse la Prim`rie [i Comitetul Jude]ean al P.C.R. Se a[teptau rezultatele, adic` binecunoscutul procent 99,9 %. n jurul orei 10 a.m. lini[tea ora[ului a fost spulberat`. Muncitorii uzinei Steagul Ro[u au ajuns n centru, strignd sloganuri anticeau[iste [i anti-comuniste. Pe drum, coloanei care num`ra cteva sute de muncitori, i s-au al`turat bra[oveni c`rora nu le venea s` cread` ce se ntmpl`. Pe str`zi nu mai patrula nici un mili]ian, circula]ia era blocat`, [oferii troleibuzelor abandonau ma[inile [i se al`turau revoltei. Mii de oameni,

growing somewhat unnaturally. Planes were no longer planes but tractors, Transylvanians were no longer Transylvanians but Moldavians or Oltenians, and worker districts filled every suburbia like as many ghettoes. At the end of the 1950s when not even the Romanian communists spoke enthusiastically about Stalin any more, Brasov was allowed to resume its old name. The only events that unsettled the political and social life of the new industrial city remained the blitz visits paid by party leader Gheorghiu-Dej, and later by the Ceausescu couple. Until one autumn day in 1987. November 15, 1987 was no ordinary day for the communists. It was elections time and the party flags bathed the streets in red, while festive dinners were laid at the City Hall and the County Committee of the Romanian Communist Party. Everybody waited for the returns, that is for the well-known 99.9 percentage. Around 10, the quiet of the city was shattered. The workers of the Steagul Rosu works flooded the city center, chanting antiCeausescu and anti-Communist slogans. On their way to the central plaza, other inhabitants of Brasov, who could not believe their eyes, joined the few hundreds. Not a single militiaman dared patrol the streets. Traffic came to a standstill as bus drivers left their cars and joined the revolt. Thousands of people among whom pupils and students


Cl`direa Prefecturii din Bra[ov, fostul Palat al Justi]iei (ridicat n 1902) n anii comunismului, aici a func]ionat Comitetul Jude]ean P.C.R., ocupat de muncitorii revolta]i la 15 noiembrie 1987. Prefects office in Brasov (erected in 1902). In the Communist period it housed the County Committee of the Romanian Communist Party. On November 15, 1987 angry workers stormed the building.

printre care elevi [i studen]i, aveau n sfr[it curajul s` protesteze. n momentul n care coloana protestatarilor a ajuns n fa]a Spitalului Jude]ean s-au auzit, timid, cteva cuvinte din De[teapt`-te romne!, vechiul imn compus n zilele revolu]iei de la 1848. Oamenii ncercau s`-l cnte, dar nu mai [tiau nici versurile, nici muzica imnului interzis. La un moment dat, cuvintele [i tonul au fost date de un muncitor maghiar, Iosif Farkas. A fost, n opinia martorilor, cel mai impresionant

finally found the courage to stage a demonstration. The moment the protesters reached the County Hospital timid lyrics from Awaken Thee, Romanian, the old anthem composed in the days of the 1848 revolution, rose to the sky. People tried to sign the whole song it but they barely managed the banned hymn. All of a sudden, a Hungarian worker, Iosif Farkas, remembered the tone and the lyrics. It was, in the opinion of many eyewitnesses, the most impressive moment of


Biserica Sfnta Treime The Holy Trinity Church

moment al protestului, reprimat cu cruzime n aceea[i zi: 61 de muncitori au fost condamna]i [i deporta]i din ora[, departe de familiile lor, situa]ie n care s-au aflat pn` la revolu]ia din decembrie 1989. Doi dintre ei, tineri de pn` n 30 de ani, Cornel Vulpe [i Vasile Vieru, au murit departe de cas`, n urma toturilor suportate pe parcursul anchetelor Securit`]ii. Un an [i ceva mai trziu, pe 2 martie 1989, un pictor bra[ovean, Liviu Babe[ s-a autoincendiat pe o prtie de

the protest that was repressed beastly on the same day. 61 workers were sentenced and deported far from their families until the revolution of December 1989. Two of them, 30year old Cornel Vulpe and Vasile Vieru died away from home as a result of the beatings and tortures inflicted by the Securitate. A year after that on March 2, 1989 a painter of Brasov, Liviu Babes set himself on fire on a ski run at Poiana Brasov in front of numerous foreign tourists. He carried a banner, which read:


schi din Poiana Bra[ov, n prezen]a a numero[i turi[ti str`ini, purtnd o pancart` pe care scria Bra[ov Auschwitz! Stop murder! Crima al c`rui final l cerea cu pre]ul propriei vie]i Liviu Babe[ a luat sfr[it abia n urma jertfei altor 73 de bra[oveni, mor]i n decembrie 1989. Sngele lor a redat via]a sufletului mutilat al ora[ului.

Brasov Auschwitz! Stop murder! But the massacre that Liviu Babes wanted to halt at the cost of his own destruction was to end only when other 73 persons of Brasov sacrificed their lives in December 1989. Their blood toll instilled fresh breath into the maimed city.

Rupt de aglomera]ia urban`, la Bra[ov po]i g`si [i o potec` spre solitudine Leaving the modern bustle behind, in Brasov you can always find a peaceful corner




Bra[ovenii au un mod absolut personal n care simt ora[ul. Aici este casa lor. Privit n lumina apusului de pe dealurile care l str`juiesc, ora[ul vorbe[te [i poate fi n]eles. Voci [i imagini uitate se mpletesc pe vechile str`zi, se ridic` peste acoperi[uri [i turnuri de demult [i se nal]` la cer. O asemenea experien]` nu se pierde. Chiar [i c`l`torii care au stat numai cteva zile la Bra[ov vorbesc despre aceste locuri cu o adnc` [i sincer` nostalgie. Puterea lui se resimte la desp`r]ire. De departe, ora[ul devine o senza]ie.

The people of Brasov have a personal feeling about their city, about their home. If admired at twilight from one of the surrounding hills, the city speaks to them in a familiar language. Forgotten voices and images seem to float over the old streets, rising above rooftops and towers from by-gone epochs. Such an experience never becomes obsolete. Even the travelers who stay only a few days in Brasov feel something special about this place, talking about it with deep and earnest nostalgia. But the real magic of Brasov can be fully grasped only when you have left it. From a distance, the city becomes an indelible sensation.

Marius Oprea

Marius Oprea


Instantanee din Bra[ov: Strada Mure[enilor, biserica ortodox` Sfnta Adormire din Pia]a Sfatului, ridicat` de romnii bra[oveni ntre 1895-1896, pe locul unei mai vechi capele. Snapshots from Brasov: Mureseni Street, the Orthodox Holy Dormition Church in the Council Plaza, erected by Brasov Romanians between 1895 and 1896, on the site of an older chapel.

Iarna n Bra[ov Winter in Brasov


Poiana Bra[ov a fost fondat` n anul 1895. n anul 1909 aici a avut loc prima competi]ie de schi din Romnia. Ast`zi este una dintre cele mai exclusiviste sta]iuni turistice din ]ar`. Poiana Brasov was founded in 1895. In 1909, it hosted the first ski competition in Romania. Today, it is one of the most posh tourist resorts in Romania.

Sursele de inspira]ie pentru text [i explica]iile ilustra]iilor au fost, n primul rnd, lucrarea profesorilor Mariana Maximescu [i Ion Dumitra[cu, O istorie a Bra[ovului, Edit. Phoenix, 2002, precum [i albumul editat de Aristotel C`ncescu [i Titus M`zg`reanu, Bra[ovul de odinioar`, Edit. Foton, 2001. Tuturor acestora, precum [i prietenului meu Horia Salc`, cel ce mi-a furnizat unele date din istoria Bra[ovului, le sunt recunosc`tor pentru faptul c`, la fel ca [i mine, n]eleg sufletul acestui ora[.

The work of Mariana Maximescu and Ion Dumitrascu O istorie a Brasovului (A History of Brasov) Phoenix Publishing House, 2002, as well as the album edited by Aristotel Cancescu and Titus Mazgareanu, Brasovul de odinioara, (Brasov Yore) printed by Foton, have inspired this text and provided the illustrations. I am grateful to all these people, as well as to my friend Horia Salca who supplied some of the data on the history of Brasov, for they all understand the soul of this city like I do.

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