Prussian Ministry of Spiritual, Educational and Medical Affairs

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Extension of the former Prussian Ministry of Culture in Berlin's Wilhelmstrasse, from 1934 the seat of the Reich Ministry of Education , from 1949 the Ministry of National Education of the GDR

The Ministry of Spiritual, Educational and Medical Matters (proper spelling: Ministry of Clergy, Educational and Medical Matters ) emerged from the section or department "for culture and public education" which existed from December 1808 to November 1817 and belonged to the Ministry of the Interior.

The establishment as a separate ministry began at the beginning of November 1817 with point III of the decree of King Friedrich Wilhelm III. to the Ministry of State:

“The Minister of the Interior hands over the Department of Culture and Public Education and the related medical system. The dignity and importance of the spiritual and educational and school matters makes it advisable to entrust them to a minister of their own, and I appoint the Minister of State Freiherr von Altenstein . "

Two weeks later it was

“The unoccupied upper floor of the old post office, Königstrasse 6, corner Poststrasse 1, the Minister v. Altenstein temporarily transferred as business premises "

The term " Ministry of Culture " was not used in official addresses . It existed with changing names and responsibilities until 1945.

History and tasks

The ministry had state supervision of the churches , was responsible for the Prussian school and university system and was gradually transferred to the state medical administration, for which the Ministry of the Interior was previously responsible, until 1849. The Ministry was supported in this task by the (royal scientific) deputation for the medical sector, which was established in 1808 and which became part of the Ministry in 1849.

The Ministry's portfolio also included the Royal Prussian Academy of Sciences , the art academies, the museums, the Royal Library of Berlin , the Berlin Observatory , the Botanical Garden , the Royal Geodetic Institute in Potsdam and the Prussian Meteorological Institute in Berlin.

At the time of the Kulturkampf , the Ministry of Culture played a key role in the disputes with the Catholic Church . In response to the Vatican's disciplinary measures against opponents of the Pope's infallibility proclaimed in the Council of 1870 , the Department for Catholic Church Affairs of the ministry passed a number of laws restricting ecclesiastical rights by 1874, banning the Jesuit order and withdrawing state grants from the Church. After the end of the conflict, Adalbert Falk resigned as Minister of Education in 1879.

After the service building was expanded in 1879 with a new building at Unter den Linden  4 (today 69) according to plans by Bernhard Kühn under the direction of Adolf Bürckner in the late classical style, an extension was  added to the main building at Wilhelmstrasse 68 in 1903 due to the increasing space requirements Paul Kieschke . After the medical administration tasks were transferred back to the Interior Ministry in 1910, the name of the Ministry changed accordingly. In 1918, after the revolution, the Ministry was renamed the Ministry of Science, Art and Public Education again. In the mid-1920s, the new medium of broadcasting was part of the Ministry's science, art and popular education; To sound out the (then not yet so-called) multimedia possibilities, the Ministry founded the radio test center in 1928 , which the National Socialists closed again shortly after they came to power because of its experimental nature.

Development after 1933

1933 to 1945

After the National Socialists came to power , Bernhard Rust , Gauleiter of South Hanover-Braunschweig , was temporarily appointed Prussian Minister of Education . Immediate appointment was possible because a Reich Commissioner had been in charge of Prussian government affairs since the so-called ' Prussian Strike ' in 1932 and the Hitler government had direct access to the state of Prussia.

After responsibility for arts affairs had been transferred to the Reich Ministry for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda , the Prussian Minister of Education Rust was appointed Reich Minister for Science, Education and Public Education on May 1, 1934 . The Prussian Ministry of Culture served as the basis of the newly created Reich Ministry, whose officials also dealt with the affairs of the Reich. At the beginning of 1935, the name of the ministry was adapted accordingly and the authority now operated as the Reich and Prussian Ministry for Science, Education and National Education (short: Reich Ministry of Education / REM). On October 1, 1938, the reference to Prussia was deleted and the ministry was finally renamed the Reich Ministry for Science, Education and National Education . During the Second World War , the building complex was destroyed with the exception of the eastern courtyard wing and parts of the connecting passage to the extension.

1945 to 1989

After the war and the founding of the German Democratic Republic (GDR) was the building in the Wilhelmstrasse rebuilt and to turn in 1989 by the Ministry of Education used.


  • The Prussian Ministry of Culture as a state authority and social agency (1817–1934) , with contributions from Bärbel Holtz, Christina Rathgeber, Hartwin Spenkuch, Reinhold Zilch. 6 volumes. Akademie Verlag, Berlin 2009 ff. (= Acta Borussica. New series, 2nd row: Prussia as a cultural state , edited by Wolfgang Neugebauer on behalf of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences ).

See also

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Collection of laws for the Royal Prussian States. 1817, p. 290.
  2. Ernst Müsebeck: The Prussian Ministry hundred years ago. Stuttgart / Berlin 1918, p. 164.
  3. Kraus, Bonhoeffer : Supreme report of the royal scientific deputation for the medical field of May 28, 1913 regarding the bricklayer's action for compensation ES In: Vjschr. judicial Med. Öff. Sanitätswes. 3rd episode. Volume 156, 1913, pp. 219-228.
  4. ^ Jutta Grüne: Beginnings of state food control in Germany. Franz Steiner Verlag, 1994.
  5. Kathrin Chod, Herbert Schwenk, Hainer Weisspflug: Prussian Ministry of Culture . In: Hans-Jürgen Mende , Kurt Wernicke (ed.): Berliner Bezirkslexikon, Mitte . Luisenstadt educational association . tape 2 : N to Z . Haude and Spener / Edition Luisenstadt, Berlin 2003, ISBN 3-89542-111-1 ( - as of October 7, 2009).
  6. Kieschke: The extension of the Ministry of Culture in Berlin. In: Journal of Construction . Volume 54, 1904, col. 1–8, plate 1–4. Digitized in the holdings of the Central and State Library Berlin .
  7. to the building on Wilhelmstrasse. Berlin Senate Department for Urban Development and the Environment
  8. ^ Wilhelmstrasse 68 - The Prussian Ministry of Culture, Unter den Linden 4 (PDF; 37 kB).