|Enormous cedar of Lebanon planted by an English princess|
Count Friedrich Joseph Ludwig Carl August was an interesting character. He was a Hessian military hero. His principality was just 85 square miles. Despite his mother's strenuous objections, he married Elizabeth, the third daughter of George III of England. We didn't get along with George III, as you recall.
When he married Elizabeth (for her sizeable dowry) she was 48 years old. On the occasion of their marriage in 1818, she brought 16 cedars of Lebanon in pots to Bad Homburg. They were a gift from her brother, the Duke of Cambridge. She planted 12 in an English garden that was built for her, but they froze in the winter of 1829. The other 4 were planted in areas where they survived. There are two in the lawn of the palace in Bad Homburg that have become enormous. The trunk of the largest (in the picture above) is 21 feet in diameter. It is spectacular. Imagine these massive trees being harvested in Lebanon for Solomon's temple. Of course, given how wet it is in Germany, they undoubtedly grow much faster than in the comparatively arid slopes of Lebanon.
There is a tower called Der Weisse Turm in the palace courtyard that is a keep that dates back to the 14th century. Three of the group (Jeff, Elder Newman, and Elder Snapp) rented a key and climbed the tower. That's 174 steps.
The rest of the palace is much newer. The only portion open for a tour are the apartments of Elizabeth to which she moved after the death of Count Friedrich in 1829. She was much admired by the people as she had a kind heart and sought to alleviate the poor. She was also an artist, and some of her work was on display.
|Palace from the garden entrance|
|The large cedar of Lebanon|
|Wing of the palace dating to the 1700s|
|The count was a cavalry officer|
|The castle court overlooks formal gardens that are very large|
|Felt overshoes for touring Elizabeth's apartments|
|Black lacquer furniture|
|We liked the blue walls in this room|
|Elizabeth was short and need the stool to climb into this bed|
|Looking south toward Frankfurt|
|Protestant (foreground) and Catholic churches just outside the castle wall|
|Some of the formal gardens below the castle|
|Frankfurt skyline visible even on a hazy day|
|Janet is sitting just under the awning down there|
|Protestant Church of the Redeemer|
|Part of our group|
|Beautiful stone work and doors|
|Janet wants a door like this at home|
|Close up of the iron work on the doors|
|We love stained glass. This window is huge.|
|All of the ceiling was covered in mosaic tile|
|The apse behind the main altar|
|Many of the medieval churches are dark and the artwork depicts a dead Christ. The Christ here looks distinctly Eastern (Orthodox) but He lives and looks powerful.|
|Colors are brilliant|
|A lighted piece in the baptistry|
|Detail of some of the mosaic work on the arches|
|Another set of beautiful doors. Great depiction of Moses encountering Jehovah and the burning bush in the relief above the doors.|