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Litoměřice coat of arms
Litoměřice (Czech Republic)
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Basic data
State : Czech RepublicCzech Republic Czech Republic
Historical part of the country : Bohemia
Region : Ústecký kraj
District : Litoměřice
Area : 1798.7206 ha
Geographic location : 50 ° 32 '  N , 14 ° 8'  E Coordinates: 50 ° 32 '13 "  N , 14 ° 7' 47"  E
Height: 136  m nm
Residents : 24.001 (Jan. 1, 2019)
Postal code : 412 01
License plate : U
Railway connection: 072 Lysá n. L. – Ústí n. L.
087 Lovosice – Česká Lípa
Status: city
Districts: 4th
Mayor : Ladislav Chlupáč (as of 2018)
Address: Mírové náměstí 15/7
412 01 Litoměřice
Municipality number: 564567
Website :

Hear Litoměřice ? / i ( German Leitmeritz ) is a city in the Czech Republic and the seat of the diocese of Leitmeritz . It belongs to the Aussiger region in northern Bohemia . From 1852 to 2002 it had the status of the district town of Okres Litoměřice . The historic city center was declared an urban monument reserve in 1978 . Audio file / audio sample  

Geographical location

City and surroundings from Radobýl ( Radebeule seen) from
Confluence of the Elbe and Eger near the city

The city is located south of the Bohemian Uplands at 171  m nm on the right bank of the Elbe opposite the mouth of the Eger , about 58 kilometers north-northwest of Prague . A 550 m long bridge crosses the Elbe, which is navigable here. Some hills make the urban area a little more varied. On the highest part are the cathedral with the cathedral square, the bishop's palace, college building and parts of Prague's Charles University .

To the west of the town rises the panoramic Radobýl (399 m), to the north-east the forested Geltschberg (725 m), at the foot of which is the spa town of Lázně Jeleč ( Bad Geltschberg ).

City structure

Litoměřice consists of the districts of Litoměřice-město ( Leitmeritz- (core) City ), Pokratice ( Pokratitz ), Předměstí ( Leitmeritz suburb ) and Za nemocnicí ( Spitalviertel ) basic settlement units are Biskupství, nádraží Dolní, Historické jádro-západ, Kocanda, Litoměřice -historické jádro Mostka, Na cihelně, Na Šancích, Nad horním nádražím, Nad Pokraticemi, Nemocnice, ostrov, Ohří, Palachova, Pod Mostkou, Pod Radobýlem, Pokratice, Pokratice-sídliště, Předměstí, Radobýl ( Radebeul ) Sídliště Cihelna, Sídliště Družba , Sídliště Svornost-východ, Sídliště Svornost-západ, Střelecký, U Richarda, U výstaviště, Za Stadionem, Za and tratí Želetice ( iron Dörfel ).

The urban area is divided into the cadastral districts Litoměřice and Pokratice.

Panorama of the city and its surroundings from the perspective of the Elbe bridge
Old Town Hall (museum) and All Saints Church
St. Stephen's Cathedral (1681) with free-standing tower (1881)
Old town with cathedral
Chalice House, Town Hall
House facade on the market square with sgraffito decorations


middle Ages

The convenient location at a ferry point across the Elbe and the relatively mild climate made it possible to settle in the area early on, as is evident from a number of archaeological finds. In the early Middle Ages, Litomerice was the center of the Slavic Lutomericii, from which the name of the city is derived. Already in the 10th century the place was integrated into the dominion of the Přemyslids and developed into a fortified administrative center in the north of Bohemia. Around 1057 Duke Spytihněv II built the stone St. Stephen's Church on the castle hill and founded a collegiate monastery belonging to it , which he provided with numerous possessions, income (mainly from the Elbe customs) and rights.

The city was formally founded around 1225 and laid out according to plan around a market square on a hill opposite the castle hill. The first citizens - probably Germans after their name - were given autonomy and freedoms according to Magdeburg law , for which Leitmeritz temporarily held the function of a suburb in Bohemia. Subsequently, the development of the area began by recruiting settlers from the Rhineland and the Lower Elbe .

The town developed extraordinarily quickly, mainly due to the flourishing grain trade and the favorable climatic conditions, which made fruitful fruit and wine growing possible: In addition to the town churches of All Saints (mentioned in 1235) and St. Laurentius (1297), monastic settlements of the Minorites (1233 St. Jakobs-Kirche), the Dominicans (1236 St. Michaels-Kirche) and the Kreuzherren (1257 Marienkirche). The latter also maintained a hospital in Leitmeritz in the 14th century . After the development of the castle hill also took hold around the middle of the 13th century, a devastating fire in 1296 threw the town back in its development. The Bohemian kings supported the reconstruction in the following years, among other things through tax breaks and the granting of stacking and mileage rights .

A municipal school was mentioned as early as 1298, and there was a chapter school in the mid-14th century. Also in the middle of the 14th century the city fortifications were expanded, with a royal castle built in the 13th century being integrated as part of this fortification. In 1348 the citizens built a city tower at the All Saints Church, in 1397 a new town hall was built. The loss of stacking rights in the grain trade as a result of the clearance on the Elbe by King Wenzel IV brought economic losses during this period .

Hussite period and Reformation

During the Hussite Wars , Leitmeritz initially sympathized with King Sigismund . The execution of 17 Hussites led to the siege of the city by Jan Žižka in 1420 . In order to avoid further disputes, but also to reflect changes within the urban population structure - the Czech population had risen steadily and was ultimately able to prevail against the German patriciate - the city came administratively to the moderate utraquist Prague cities. The German-Czech opposition was also reflected in a brief waiver of the legal move to Magdeburg and in the demand to exclude the Germans from all public offices, which Sigismund finally approved in 1436.

In the second half of the 15th century Leitmeritz recovered economically. Income brought u. a. a toll that was levied for the use of a newly built wooden bridge over the Elbe. The important stacking and mile rights were confirmed by the kings George of Podebrady and Vladislav II . At the beginning of the 16th century, the city fortifications were reinforced again and now enclosed 258 houses. Economically and politically, the city now competed primarily with neighboring nobles.

The great majority of the citizenry was utraquistic at this time, of which the songbook of the literary brotherhood (1517) gives an impressive testimony of piety. There were also Catholics and Jews . However, the Jewish quarter was looted in 1541 and in 1546 Leitmeritz was granted royal privileges to forbid Jews to stay in the city. The city leaders built a city hospital on the site of the Jewish school.

The negative attitude of the city towards the pro-Catholic Habsburg politics of King Ferdinand I culminated in the refusal to take part in the Schmalkaldic War . After the battle of Mühlberg , which was victorious for the king , Leitmeritz suffered heavy fines, the delivery of weapons, the loss of important sources of income and the restriction of urban autonomy. Since 1548 the appeal to the Protestant Magdeburg , which was under imperial law , was forbidden; royal appellate councils at Prague Castle were responsible (“Prague Law”). Nevertheless, numerous buildings from the second half of the 16th century (Schwarzer Adler [approx. 1560], Kelchhaus [1570–80]) as well as the founding of a Latin school and connections to the center of the Reformation Wittenberg testify to the wealth and culture of the city.

Thirty Years War, Recatholization and Josephine Enlightenment

Jesuit college, from 1810 seminary

At the turn of the 17th century, the majority of the Leitmeritz population was Lutheran . Together with the Utraquists and the Bohemian Brothers , she was firmly on the side of the anti-Habsburg opposition, which led to her participation in the uprising of 1618–1620. The defeat of the Protestants in the Battle of White Mountain led to the renewed loss of numerous privileges and municipal property. Many citizens were expropriated and, if they refused to convert to Catholicism, expelled from the city.

The Thirty Years War brought frequently changing crews - u. a. Swedish and Saxon - all of which came with devastation. The city and its surroundings suffered dramatic population losses: in 1640 there were only 52 citizens in Litoměřice, in the urban villages in the vicinity there were only eight inhabitants.

After the war, a strict Counter-Reformation set in , the most important bearer of which, as in many other places in Bohemia, were the Jesuits . In 1655 the diocese of Leitmeritz was canonically established, its first bishop Maximilian Rudolf von Schleinitz - previously the last provost of the collegiate monastery - already in 1647 Emperor Ferdinand III. nominated. A Capuchin monastery was founded in 1649, and the St. Ludmilla Church was built from 1654 to 1657. The Dominican Church of St. Michael was built between 1672 and 1685.

The Catholic reorganization was generally accompanied by brisk building activity, for which numerous builders, mainly from Italy, were hired. From 1670 Giovanni Domenico Orsi de Orsini built the new St. Stephen's Cathedral , to which the old St. Stephen's Church had to give way. Giulio Broggio planned and realized the episcopal residence from 1689 to 1701 . Between 1689 and 1731 he also planned the Jesuit Church of Mary on the site of the medieval Kreuzherrenkircheder, which his son Octavio Broggio completed. The associated Jesuit college was not completed until 1770, only three years before the order was dissolved. Octavio Broggio was also responsible for the construction of the Wenceslas Church from 1714 to 1716 on the cathedral hill and the Baroque transformation of the town church in 1716.

The population has increased again since 1650, mainly due to immigration, even if a plague epidemic brought a setback in 1680 ( plague column on the market square). The numerical proportions between German and Czech inhabitants in Leitmeritz shifted more and more in favor of the Germans at the turn of the 18th century, which u. a. this reflected that the council minutes were written in German from 1738.

In the armed conflicts between Prussia and Austria in the 18th century (including in the aftermath of the Battle of Lobositz ) Leitmeritz suffered several times under military occupation and was impaired in its economic development. The main source of income for the city continued to be the grain trade to the north on the Elbe. From 1780 the construction of the nearby fortress Theresienstadt gave impetus to the Leitmeritz craft.

The Enlightenment reforms of Joseph II caused profound changes in the city. The Jesuit order was banned as early as 1773 and the Minorite monastery was dissolved in 1785, and the Dominicans moved into its building. Their buildings were in turn rebuilt between 1814 and 1816 as a district office.

In 1777 Leitmeritz had to sell his property, from 1778 trained civil servants served in the city administration, whose autonomy was restricted. The administration specifically promoted the return of Protestant religious refugees and the immigration of Prussian and Saxon citizens. The ban on Jews from sleeping within the city walls has been lifted.

In the cultural and educational field, the bishops Emmanuel Ernst von Waldstein , who set up a library used by leading scholars, and Ferdinand Kindermann von Schulstein (1790–1801) as the chief director of the Bohemian normal schools set important accents that had an impact far beyond Leitmeritz.

19th century: German-Czech opposition

View around 1850

After the coalition wars again impaired the economic development of Leitmeritz at the beginning of the 19th century, the so-called Elbe Acts, which ensured free navigation on the river, the resulting regular steam traffic to Saxony and the significantly improved traffic situation due to the demolition of the city fortifications brought a long-lasting economic situation Upswing: Between 1787 and 1854, the city's population doubled.

From 1800 to 1815 Josef Jungmann worked at the Leitmeritzer Gymnasium and taught the Czech language for the first time in Bohemian schools . The young Karel Hynek Mácha , who died in Leitmeritz in 1836, was one of his students at the Charles University in Prague . The theater, built in 1822, is named after him.

On the one hand, the revolutionary events of 1848/49 stirred up the Greater German mood among the German-Bohemian population, which was reflected in the founding of numerous German associations and newspapers; Leitmeritz provided a member of the Paulskirche in Frankfurt . On the other hand, the Czech-nationally minded residents also gained influence on the cultural life of the city: in 1860 they met at Mácha's grave, in 1848 and 1868 national celebrations were held on the Říp , which in 1862 was contrasted by a German gymnastics festival in honor of Joseph Emanuel Hilscher . These expressions of increasing interaction between Germans and Czechs were repeated in 1898 on the occasion of the anniversary of the events mentioned. The German side turned against the opening of a Czech school in 1880 and against its public recognition in 1912.

Leitmeritz remained largely unaffected by the stormy industrial development of Bohemia and remained as a location for crafts, administration, schools and garrisons (staff of the kuk IX Army Corps as well as staff, I and II battalions of the kuk Landwehr Infantry Regiment No. 9). In 1858/59 a flood-proof iron bridge was built over the Elbe, and in 1874 the city was connected to the emerging railway network by the Austrian Northwest Railway (ÖNWB) .

At the time of the Habsburg Monarchy , the city was a popular paradise for pensioners, as the climate in the area is the mildest in Bohemia . This also enables viticulture on the Elbe slopes as well as high-yield agriculture (including fruit growing ) in the area. Around 1900 there was an agriculture, fruit and viticulture school as well as various medium-sized production companies in Leitmeritz, along with other educational establishments.

20th century

German troops parade on the Leitmeritz market square, swastika flags on the buildings (October 12, 1938), photo from the Federal Archives .

The majority of the city's German-Bohemian population responded to the proclamation of the Czechoslovak Republic with a declaration of independence by the Germans in Bohemia, who formed a national assembly in Leitmeritz. On December 11, 1918, the swift military action of the Czechoslovak army put an end to all German ambitions. In the local elections of 1919, the German bourgeois parties, which subsequently also appointed the mayor, won a majority.

The German-Czech relationship remained tense and became more and more emotional from 1930 onwards, the Czechoslovak authorities responded with dismissals and bans. On the German-Bohemian side, the Sudeten German Party under Konrad Henlein gained great influence, in June 1938 it won 24 of 36 seats in the local elections.

After the Munich Agreement , Leitmeritz was annexed by the National Socialist German Reich in 1938 . More than 5,000 Czechs and Czechoslovak institutions left the city. Litomerice was from 1939 to 1945 the seat of the district Litomerice , Region of Usti nad Labem , in the Reich District of Sudetenland and the seat of the Court of Appeal Litomerice .

Between March 1944 and May 1945, it was near the city, the concentration camp Litomerice the concentration camp Flossenburg . There was an underground armaments production ( underground relocation Richard ) in the tunnel system of an abandoned limestone mine about 2.5 kilometers northwest of the city center . Around 4,500 of the 18,000 or so concentration camp prisoners died. In 1964 these tunnels were put into operation as the Richard nuclear repository ; the repository is to be operated until 2070.

The city's existing buildings survived the Second World War almost undamaged. Due to the Beneš decrees , most of the German-Bohemian residents of the city were expropriated and expelled in 1945 and in the following years .

In the traditionally bourgeois town, the socialist administration relied on small and medium-sized state-run companies that were geared towards the agricultural character of the area. While on the one hand modern settlement blocks were built on the outskirts, on the other hand the listed town center was preserved and numerous buildings were renovated in an exemplary manner.


Population development until 1945
year Urban area Residents Remarks
1787 no information 02,830
1830 no information 03,952 in 571 houses
1831 1,432 yokes 499 fathoms 03,988 in 563 houses
1854 2,532 yokes 550 fathoms 06,068
1857 no information 07,438 on October 31st
1880 no information 10,854 of which 9,263 Germans and 1,417 Czechs
1890 1,463 ha 11,342 including 10,004 Germans
1900 1,463 ha 13,075 of which 11,532 Germans and 1,329 Czechs
1910 1,463 ha 15,421 thereof 13,165 Germans and 2,034 Czechs
1921 1,463 ha 16,988 of which 11,015 Germans and 5,066 Czechs
1930 1,463 ha 18,498 of these 10,878 Germans, 6,485 Czechs and 143 Jews
1939 1,463 ha 15,472 of which 1,603 Evangelicals, 13,397 Catholics, 84 other Christians and 31 Jews
Population development since the end of the Second World War
year Urban area Residents German Czechs
1947 14,402 - -
1950 14,035 - -
1970 1,825 ha 19,595 - -
1991 2,881 ha 26,013 112 25,620
2013, Jan. 1 24,316 - -

Sights and culture

Panorama of the town square in Litoměřice
Old Town Hall - now a museum
Hussite chalice on the chalice - symbol of the city
  • The slightly irregular rectangular town square is 1.8 hectares (75–90 m × 180–195 m) in size. There are the most architecturally significant buildings in the city.
    • Old town hall, built in the Gothic style . On a column there is a rare mythological representation, the sculpture of a wild man , mistakenly interpreted as a Roland figure. Today museum of local history.
    • Chalice house (former Salzamt) with Hussite chalice on the roof. Today the seat of the city council (town hall)
    • City tower, the oldest building in the city, with the city church of All Saints
    • the Black Eagle and the Broggio House
  • The widely visible St. Stephen's Cathedral on the cathedral hill is one of the most outstanding buildings in the city. In the cathedral district is the bishop's seat of the Leitmeritz diocese, which extends from Liberec in the east to Klášterec nad Ohří in the west.
  • Jesuit Church (art gallery), Dominican Church, Capuchin Church, Adalberti Church and Wenceslas Church and a Protestant church
  • Leitmeritz has a small city theater founded in the 19th century.
  • The synagogue once stood in Laurenzigasse (see also Jewish cemetery (Litoměřice) )
  • The high school was designed by the Bohemian architect Josef Mocker .
  • Bílé stráně nature reserve

Town twinning

  • Litoměřice has had a partnership with Fulda (Germany) since 2001 , and a sponsorship has existed since 1961. The home district association Leitmeritz as an organization for displaced persons is also based in Fulda.
  • There is a partnership with Meißen (Germany) downstream of the Elbe
  • Calamba City (Philippines)


The civil brewery existed in Leitmeritz from 1720 to 2002. The Elbschlossbrauerei, founded in 1858, was abandoned in 1939 and converted into a large cold store for vegetables. The Plunder & Pollak leather factory in Eisendörfel was established in the 1890s.


Railway connections

In this context there is also a railway bridge over the Elbe.


Litoměřice has a small passenger port where the Elbe cruise ships dock. The ship tourists can visit the city from here.


sons and daughters of the town

People with a relationship to the city


Web links

Commons : Litoměřice  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Obec Litoměřice: Územně identifikační registr ČR. In:, accessed on October 8, 2018.
  2. Český statistický úřad - The population of the Czech municipalities as of January 1, 2019 (PDF; 7.4 MiB)
  3. ^ Litoměřice. Addresses. (No longer available online.) In: October 1, 2007, archived from the original on October 7, 2007 ; Retrieved October 8, 2018 (Czech).
  4. Základní sídelní jednotky: Územně identifikační registr ČR. Základní sídelní jednotky. Obec Litoměřice. In:, accessed on October 8, 2018.
  5. Katastrální území. Obec Litoměřice. In:, accessed on October 5, 2019 (register of territorial division).
  6. Leitmeritz . In: Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon . 6th edition. Volume 5, Bibliographisches Institut, Leipzig / Vienna 1906, p.  392 .
  7. Yearbooks of the Bohemian Museum of Natural and Regional Studies, History, Art and Literature. Volume 2. Prague 1831, p. 197, number 1 ( scan in Google book search)
  8. Johann Gottfried Sommer : The Kingdom of Bohemia. Volume 1: Leitmeritz Circle. JG Calve, Prag 1833, p. 9 ( scan ) and p. 2 ( scan in the Google book search).
  9. Statistical overviews of the population and livestock in Austria. Vienna 1859, p. 40, right column ( scan in Google book search).
  10. a b Michael Rademacher: German administrative history from the unification of the empire in 1871 to the reunification in 1990. Leitmeritz district. (Online material for the dissertation, Osnabrück 2006).