Siegestor (“Victory Gate”) is a triumphal arch in Munich, famously crowned by a lion-quadriga.
A commission to build the triumphal arch originated from King Ludwig I, who had architect Friedrich von Gärtner to design the monument, from 1840…
…with the arch completed in 1852, now under leadership from architect Eduard Mezger (as Gärtner had died two years earlier).
The design, from instructions by Ludwig I, was for a triumphal arch inspired by Arch of Constantine in Rome.
At the same time to the triumphal arch, a new street, Ludwigstrasse, was constructed, to reroute much of the local traffic.
PHOTO: Munich Victory Gate, as seen from its northern side, towards central Munich.
PHOTO: Crowning the triumhal arch is a lion quadriga, ridden by “Bavaria” character, Munich’s secular guardian saint, ‘Tellus (Mater) Bavarica’. Text “Dem Bayerischen Heere“, translating as “Bavarian Army“, is a dedication of the monument to the region’s armed forces by King Ludwig I (in power from 1825-1848).
PHOTO: The triumphal arch’s southern facade. Text on the facade, by Wilhelm Hausenstein, reads: “Dem Sieg geweiht, vom Krieg zerstört, zum Frieden mahnend“, in English: “Dedicated to victory, destroyed in a war, as a reminder of peace“…a reference to the monument originally being dedicated to a victorious army, being destroyed in World War II, and rebuilt as a monument to peace.
When it was completed, the triumphal arch was dedicated to the honor of the Bavarian army.
Munich Victory Gate offers clear, vertical structures (similarly to the triumphal arch of Constantine), with columns that have been placed on high pedestals.
You’ll find many similar features from other major European triumphal archs, including…
Highligh of the monument, a lion-quadriga ridden by ‘Bavaria’, is by Frederick Brugger, Johann Martin von Wagner, and Johann von Halbig, and brings a balancing element to the monument’s center.
The lions in the monument are, in fact, a reference to the symbol animal of Munich, lion, which, as symbolism, comes from the city’s founder,Henry the Lion (Heinrich der Löwe).
Address: Leopoldstrasse 1, 80539 Munich, Germany
After being destroyed in the Second World War, Siegestor, which is 21 meters (68 ft) tall and 24 meters (78 ft) wide, was rebuilt in 1958…but in a much more modest way, in comparison to the original.