From the town of Bacharach we drove down along the Rhine towards the city of Koblenz; a name that originates from the Latin word ‘confluence’ or ‘merging of rivers’. Of course it was named so for a reason and the city is build where the Moselle river and Rhine merge together. The exact place where the rivers meet is also known as the German Corner or “Deutsches Eck”.
Our main destination in Koblenz was the monument of a German Emperor William I of Germany, mounted on a 14 meter high horse. Bruno Schmitz, known for many nationalistic memorials, was the architect of this monument and it was inaugurated by the Emperors grandson William II in 1897. The monument itself has been associated with the German refusal of any French claims to the area, symbolized among other things by the fact that the statue is facing its ass end towards France… clever! It should be noted that Koblenz in its 2,000 year history has gone through the hands of many nations and France was just the latest unwelcomed occupant.
The statue was however destroyed by the US artillery during World War II. French military government, being the clever thinkers that they were since the Americans helped them and all, wanted to complete the destruction and replace the statue with a new one in the name of bringing both countries closer together, but this plan was never set into place. The monument was instead rebuild and President Theodor Heuss turned the German Corner into a monument of German unity in a wish to bring the capitalist west together with the communist east. In 1989 this wish was granted and three concrete parts of the actual wall were installed next to the monument while the emblems of new federal states were added to the list surrounding the statue.
Speaking of German states, on one of the photos you can see an eagle with four states listed: Thuringen, Sachsen, Saar, and Schlesien. The latter, Schlesien, is present day Śląsk in Poland and was part of the land ceded to Poland after WWII.
Also seen on a couple of photos is the Basilica of St. Castor built in 817 and is the oldest church in Koblenz.