The Beautiful Town Idstein – Part 6 – Die Fachwerkhäuser

Ein Fachwerkhaus is the German term for what could be considered a typical medieval building – a frame made of beams with the gaps filled with bricks and mortar. They are in many places in CZ, but it seems to me they are much, much more common in Germany. And Idstein is certainly full of them.

What I found most interesting is the fact that some houses were built from straight timber with precise symmetric angles and all the lines straight. And others had completely irregular beams incorporated in the frame, or they were slanted in different directions like they were drunk.

These all are beautiful buildings but I  would not like to live in one of them. The hotel at which we resided was not timber frame house, but it was a very old building. This means there were no right angles anywhere and all the floors were wavy and sloped in different directions. I would not mid the odd angles much but I found walking on sloped and uneven floor slightly disconcerting and uncomfortable.

Not to mention the huge amount of work that has to be invested in maintaining these buildings.

Fachhaus Fachhaus Fachhaus Fachhaus Fachhaus


©Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.


  1. says

    Fachwerkhaus ;)
    They were common long after medieval times, right into the 18th century. And yes, maintaining them and living in them is often a pain in the ass. there’s a small place with a lovely old town near me and many of the houses are protected, which means that every effing renovation needs committee approval. They’re also mostly not suited for the needs of modern families. I know one family got approval for turning two houses into one while maintaining the exterior. You really need to love them to live in them.

  2. says

    Thanks for the correction. I know my posts and comments are often containing typos that sneak through despite my best efforts, but leaving out middle 30% of a word, twice, must be a record.

  3. jazzlet says

    They are beautiful. I wonder if the straight versus odd shaped beams is to do with the age of the building? I’ve holidayed in places with cruck roofed halls ie one huge curved piece of oak split into two to form two side of each A frame of the roof but that says they are not common on the continent so continental builders may not have had a tradition of using paired split beams.

  4. voyager says

    That last building looks like something made for a movie, not a place that is actually used. It would be fun to see the inside and have a walk around.

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