Friday, 21 October 2011


Last weekend we went on our first trip out into the beautiful landscape of Sächsische Schweiz, Germany. 

We went to a lovely town called Stolpen - not exactly where we planned to go, but very much worth seeing nonetheless.
Main square in Stolpen

Aside from being a really pretty town with very lovely roofs (I like a good roof), it turns out to be important in geological terms as well. Specifically, basalt. According to the sign on this memorial to basalt, Stolpen is where basalt was given its name, by Agricola in 1546. And, moreover, the basalt of Stolpen provides the bar against which all basalt worldwide is measured.

And having pondered long and hard on the significance of basalt, I kept on seeing its distinctive polygonal patterns everywhere; paving slabs, fences, tiles... and of course in buildings, since in Stolpen basalt is one of the most important building materials.
Burg Stolpen: built in, and on, basalt

A Rapunzel-style tower (albeit with doors and windows) in Burg Stolpen
Another very interesting, and very beautiful, thing about Stolpen is the church. I didn't feel very comfortable taking lots of photos in a place of worship, but I sneaked a picture of the font, which gives a feel for the baroque nature of the decor. It is gorgeous - lovely paintings on the walls, and all in pastel pink and grey- pigeon colours. Pigeons are doves, after all.

The font, featuring a dove on the lid.
A limed (?) tower - Burg Stolpen

View from Burg Stolpen

eyelid-windows in Burg Stolpen

Another interesting roof

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