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Article

Georg Ruppelt

German town in Lower Saxony, with a population of 55,000. From 1432 to 1754 it was the sole residence and seat of government of the dukes of Brunswick–Lüneburg–Wolfenbüttel, during which time it was the cultural centre of Lower Saxony, chiefly significant for its ducal library, originally founded in 1572 by Julius, Duke of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel (reg 1568–89). Wolfenbüttel was the first planned Renaissance town in Germany, and its design was influenced by the theories of Hans Vredeman de Vries . It included a castle complex, princely administrative buildings, the houses of court officials and bourgeois residential districts. A rare, unified series of half-timbered buildings of the 16th and 17th centuries can also be seen here.

A castle was first documented in Wolfenbüttel in 1188; this was destroyed in 1255, and in 1283 the Wasserburg was built as a residence for the dukes of Brunswick and Lüneburg. Destruction in 1542 caused by the Schmalkaldic War prompted the restoration of the town from ...

Article

Reinhard Alex

Town in Saxony-Anhalt, eastern Germany, 16 km east of Dessau in the Elbe valley, and the site of Schloss Wörlitz and its extensive park, Germany’s first garden of major importance in the English landscape style. This large park (112.5 ha) was created between 1764 and c. 1805 as part of the summer residence of Prince Francis Anhalt-Dessau , and it was open to the public from the very beginning. Its numerous early Neo-classical and neo-Gothic buildings, monuments and bridges in various styles are a programmatic reflection of the ideas of the Enlightenment. Thus the poplars of Ermenonville were faithfully reproduced, as was Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s tomb (1782), while Gotthold Ephraim Lessing’s advocacy of religious tolerance was reflected in a temple (1789–90) that was equipped as a synagogue (fittings stripped by the Nazis). The garden was largely conceived by Prince Francis himself and the architect Friedrich Wilhelm Erdmannsdorff , who were both profoundly influenced by travels in England and Italy; evidence of a lasting enthusiasm for Italy is seen in the Insel Stein (...

Article

Worms  

Dethard von Winterfeld

German city in Rhineland-Palatinate. The site was first settled by the Celts (as Borbetomagus) and later became a Roman garrison town (Civitas Vangionum) and the capital of the Vangiones region; sections of the forum walls still stand. In ad 413 Worms became the capital of the Burgundian kings, and as such was the setting for the Nibelungenlied (c. 1200), but it was destroyed by the Huns in 436. When it was rebuilt by the Merovingian kings, it also became the seat of a bishopric. In 1184 it became an imperial free city. Although Worms became very powerful and played an important role in the rivalries between the crown, the pope, and the dukes, very few buildings survive from the medieval period. The church of St Paul was built by Bishop Burchard (reg 1000–25), who was particularly influential in strengthening the bishopric. Only parts of the original 11th-century structure survive; the church was modified in the 13th century and partly rebuilt in the 18th. The cathedral (...

Article

Anna Bentkowska

[Ger. Breslau ]

Polish city on the River Odra (Ger. Oder) in Lower Silesia, c. 300 km south-west of Warsaw. Wrocław developed on several islands in the river and on its south bank, originally as a trade centre on the amber route linking the Baltic Sea with the Roman Empire. A Slav settlement on Ostrów Tumski (Cathedral Island) is associated by some scholars with the Bohemian prince Vratislav I (reg ad 895–921). By 990 the town was ruled by the Piast princes, and a bishopric was established in 1000. Ostrów Tumski remained independent of the town, the south part of which was walled and moated. Romanesque architecture and sculpture flourished in Wrocław from the 12th century under the patronage of the magnate Piotr Włostowic (c. 1080–c. 1153), his wife Maria and Bishop Walter of Malonne (d 1169). In 1134 Maria Włostowic founded the Augustinian abbey and the church of the Virgin on Piasek Island. At nearby Ołbin, ...

Article

Christian F. Otto

German city and capital of Lower Franconia, Bavaria. It is notable for its Baroque architecture, particularly that of Antonio Petrini in the 17th century and Balthasar Neumann in the 18th. The most notable building from this period is the Residenz, built by Neumann.

Würzburg, mentioned in a document of ad 704 as ‘castellum Virteburh’, is situated on the flat right bank of the River Main about halfway between Frankfurt am Main and Nuremberg. On the opposite bank rises a steep hill, the Marienberg, which takes its name from a circular church that was dedicated to the Virgin Mary in 706.

The see of Würzburg was established by St Boniface in 742, and a cathedral consecrated in Charlemagne’s presence in 788. In 820 Emperor Louis the Pious granted toll privileges to the town market. As the town prospered the power of its bishops grew, and in 1030 they were granted jurisdiction over the market and the citizens’ court. In the 11th century the cathedral of St Kilian was enlarged to its present external form of a Romanesque basilica with nave, aisles, transept and two west towers; two eastern towers of green sandstone, set in the angles between the transepts and the choir, modulate in section from square to octagonal....

Article

Wuwei  

[Wu-wei ; Liangzhou]

Chinese town in central Gansu Province, historically a major communications centre and military town on the Silk Route. From the Western Han period (206 bcad 9), Wuwei was an important frontier post guarding a strategic part of the Great Wall in the Hexi Corridor. A large garrison was stationed at the town, manning several outlying forts and watch-towers along the Silk Route. Many Han (206 bcad 220) documents written on bamboo slips have been found in several of the watchtowers around Wuwei. An important Han tomb (Leitai, nr Wumei) of ad 186–219 contained bronze figurines and models of chariots and horses, including a ‘flying horse’ (Lanzhou, Gansu Prov. Mus.; see China, People’s Republic of §VII 3., (vi), (b) ).

During the Northern and Southern Dynasties period ( ad 310–589) Wuwei was the capital of several lesser states, including the Former Liang (313–76...

Article

Wuxi  

Henrik H. Sørensen

[Wu-hsi]

Chinese city situated at the confluence of Lake Tai and the Grand Canal, Jiangsu Province, previously an important centre of trade and the home of many merchant collectors of art.

During the Eastern Zhou period (771–256 bc) Wuxi was known for its deposits of tin, but by the time it had gained the status of a township and its present name, Wuxi (‘without tin’), during the Western Han period (206 bcad 9), these deposits had been depleted. In the Three Kingdoms period ( ad 220–80) it became a sub-prefecture. From the Sui period ( ad 581–618) it was an important trade town at a junction in the network of canals and natural waterways that provided the essential means of transport in the area. The countryside around the town is highly fertile, and many kinds of crops are cultivated. From early times Wuxi was an important centre for the production of silk, although the weaving was normally done in neighbouring Suzhou....

Article

Xanten  

Hans Peter Hilger

German town in North Rhine–Westphalia. It was the site of a Roman garrison and the town of Colonia Ulpia Traiana, and takes its name (Lat.: ad Sanctos) from the martyrs’ tomb of c. ad 361–3, now underlying the collegiate church of St Victor (see §1 below); parts of the stone amphitheatre (2nd century ad) survive. The town prospered during the Middle Ages and the centre still retains its medieval plan and numerous medieval houses. Parts of the old enceinte also stand, including the twin-towered, double Klever Tor, dating from the 14th century. In the 12th century and later Xanten was culturally linked to Cologne, and objects in the treasury of St Viktor, including the reliquary shrine (1130) and the portable altar (c. 1175–80), are products of workshops on the Lower Rhine. A number of fine buildings in the town date from the 17th and 18th centuries....

Article

Xi’an  

Mary S. Lawton

[Sian, Hsi’an ; formerly Chang’an, Ch’ang-an]

Capital of Shaanxi Province, China, and most significant as the nucleus of an archeologically rich area, the artefacts of which document the remarkable continuity of Chinese civilization.

Xi’an is located in the fertile loess valley of the Wei River, which was settled as early as Paleolithic times (before c. 6500 bc). For over 1000 years the capital of the empire was intermittently located there (see fig. ). From the 2nd century ad to the 14th it marked the eastern terminus of the Silk Route and hence was especially open to new ideas introduced from Central Asia. The city was most important during the Tang period ( ad 618–907; see fig. (e)), when its cosmopolitan and tolerant cultural life reflected its significance as a trading centre. With the fall of the Tang, the city was largely destroyed; although it was rebuilt in the 14th century (f), it never regained its cultural primacy....

Article

Haiyao Zheng

[Hsien-yang]

Town in Shaanxi Province, China, north-west of the city of Xi’an. Xianyang was the capital city of the state of Qin and then of the Qin dynasty (i.e. from 350 bc to 206 bc). The exact location of the old Qin capital is controversial. It has been argued convincingly that the remains are divided between Changling station, Yaodian Zhen and Dianshang cun, and that part of it is buried at the bottom of the Wei River, 15 km east of modern Xianyang.

Xianyang was set up as a capital by Prince Xiaogong (b 381 bc; reg 361–338 bc; d 338 bc). Qin Shi Huangdi, the ‘First Emperor of Qin’ (reg 221–210 bc), settled 120,000 wealthy families there and had extravagant palaces built for himself. When the Qin were defeated the city was burnt by the Chu rebel leader Xiang Yu. Under the Han dynasty (...

Article

Xinyang  

Alain Thote

[Hsin-yang]

City and district in southern Henan Province, China. Two large tombs, generally considered to date from the 4th century bc, were found at Changtaiguan, north of the city of Xinyang. Tomb 1 probably belonged to a dignitary of the southern state of Chu .

The two tombs, like those at Changsha in Hunan Province and at Shou xian in Anhui Province, display many features typical of Chu culture and are a testament to its widespread influence. They have wooden, compartmentalized ‘outer coffins’, like the tombs found in the Jiangling region. Although pillaged before they were discovered in 1956, the tombs contained a sizeable number of personal effects in a reasonably well-preserved state, those in Tomb 1 of a higher quality than those in Tomb 2. Notable are a peal of 13 bronze bells; some zither fragments painted with hybrid animals, dragons, hunters with bows and arrows, and musicians; and two wooden lacquered sculptures of guardian animals (h. 1.52 and 1.28 m) with protruding eyes, tongues hanging down on to their chests and heads crowned with antlers. The coffins were lacquered, as were many other items, such as earthenware and wooden objects (more than 200 pieces), the backs of bronze mirrors and carved figures. In addition to the commonly used black and vermilion, gold, silver and other colours were employed for some motifs. A large drum stand, typical of Chu design, is in the form of two birds with long necks, standing back-to-back and perched over two crouching tigers (1.62×1.40 m). Next to a group of bamboo strips, some of which recorded the personal effects in Tomb 1, was a collection of utensils used to shape the bamboo prior to writing....

Article

Yangon  

Annemarie Esche and Pierre Pichard

[Rangoon; anc. Dagon]

Capital city and major port of Burma, on the Rangoon River in the fertile delta of the Irrawaddy in Lower, or southern, Burma. Rangoon is built on the site of the ancient Mon city of Dagon, first mentioned in chronicles of the 11th century. The city was given its present name, meaning ‘end of strife’, by the founder of the Burman Konbaung dynasty, Alaungpaya (reg 1752–60), after his defeat of the Mon kingdom of Pegu. It became the capital in 1885, when Burma was finally annexed by the British, and was a major colonial centre for the next half-century. Some fine houses and the Strand Hotel (1901; by John Darwood) date from the colonial period (see Burma 2.). At the centre of the city’s grid plan is the Sule stupa, remarkable for the fact that the octagonal shape of the base is continued up to the bell. The ...

Article

Jin Ying

[ Yangchow ; Yang-chou ]

Chinese city in Jiangsu Province, located on the main route between north China and the southern Yangzi delta, between the Huaihe River system and the Yangzi River. Yangzhou is also the main focus of an extensive canal system in northern Jiangsu. In 486 bc Fucai, king of the state of Wu, organized the construction of the Han’gou Canal to connect the Huai and Yangzi rivers for grain shipping and built the first city here. The city was rebuilt in 319 bc during the Warring States period (403–221 bc) under the name of Guangling. At the beginning of the 7th century ad Emperor Yangdi of the Sui dynasty ( ad 581–618) built the Grand Canal and toured the city three times in his short reign.

The combination of a mild climate, moderate rainfall and fertile soil has made Yangzhou and its surroundings a land of abundant produce, and its port on the Grand Canal made it a hub of land as well as water transport. By the Tang period (618–907) it was the most important port for domestic and overseas voyages and trade in eastern China. The monk Jianzhen set off from Yangzhou for his various attempts at the sea crossing to Japan, and the Japanese monk Ennin arrived here. Tang-period poets visited Yangzhou and wrote about it. The Song-period literary leaders Quyang Xiu and Su Shi were once mayors of the city. Through the Song (...

Article

Raja de Silva

[Yāpāhuva ; Pali: Subha-pabbata ; Sundara-pabbata ; Yasa-pabbata]

Sri Lankan site and capital city in the 13th century. Built around an outcrop of rock 90 m high, Yapahuva originated as a Buddhist cave monastery in the last centuries bc. The site came to prominence in the early 13th century as a defence station during the south Indian and Malay invasions. After the routing of the invaders, a well-fortified palace was built that served as the seat of Bhuvanekabahu I (reg 1272–84). Yapahuva was then sacked by a Pandya general, Aryachakravatti, and subsequently abandoned.

The defences exposed by excavation are roughly circular in plan and consist of two ramparts and two moats that abut the great rock on its south side. Gateways are located on the eastern and western sides. A broad flight of steps over the southern side of the outer rampart leads to the outer city. More or less in line with these steps is an ornamental ...

Article

D. O. Shvidkovsky

City and regional centre in Russia, c. 280 km north-east of Moscow at the confluence of the rivers Kotorosl and Volga. It was founded c. 1010 by Prince Yaroslav I (reg 1019–54); from 1218 it served as the capital of the Yaroslavl’ principality, which was subjugated to Moscow in 1463. In the 18th and 19th centuries it was a provincial capital.

In the 11th and 12th centuries Yaroslavl’ consisted of a small fortress with earthen and wooden ramparts. Trade along the Volga led to its expansion, and in the 13th century a settlement grew up around the kremlin, including 17 wooden churches (destr.) and the monastery of the Saviour with its stone cathedral of the Transfiguration (1216). A stone cathedral of the Dormition (1215) was also built within the kremlin. In 1238 the town was ravaged by the Tatars and then restored. From the early 13th century to the early 14th Yaroslavl’ also served as a major centre of icon production. One of the most colourful examples from this period is the ...

Article

Yazd  

[ Yezd ]

City in central Iran on the western edge of the central desert. Dependent on a system of underground aqueducts (Pers. qanāt), Yazd was an agricultural centre that flourished in the Middle Ages as an entrepôt on the trade route between Central Asia and the Gulf. The city, which was originally called Katha, dates at least from Sasanian times ( ad 226–645) when it was an important centre of Zoroastrianism. In the 7th century ad it was captured by Muslim forces. Although never a capital, it had a long and important tradition of architectural patronage in the Islamic period, which is extensively reported in local chronicles. In the 10th century it had a fortified citadel and houses built of unbaked brick. The tomb known as Duvazdah Imam (‘Twelve imams’; 1037–8) is notable for its early use of the trilobed squinch, a device that became a hallmark of architecture in Iran in the 11th and 12th centuries (...

Article

M. I. Andreyev

[formerly Sverdlovsk]

Russian town and regional centre in the Urals, 1670 km east of Moscow. Between 1924 and 1991 it was known as Sverdlovsk. The town, named in honour of Empress Catherine I (reg 1725–7), was founded in 1721 on the Iset’ River by the statesman and historian Vasily Tatishchev (1686–1750), together with the large Isetsky Metallurgical Factory, and was intended as an industrial, cultural and trading centre. Since the mid-18th century, Yekaterinburg has been renowned for the manufacture of stoneware, lamps and boxes made from jasper, malachite, rhodonite and porphyry, as well as for icons and carved iconostases by local artists. The Iset’, which runs north–south through the town, now forms a series of interconnecting reservoirs, of which the largest is the Upper Iset’ reservoir. Water from the river was formerly diverted to power the factory’s engines. The regular street network, typical of an 18th-century fortified Ural factory-town, was reinforced in new general plans for the town proposed in ...

Article

M. I. Andreyev

Russian town in Siberia on the central course of the Yenisei River, c. 3400 km east of Moscow. It was founded in 1619 by Siberian Cossacks as a military fortress on the hilly left bank of the river. Until the early 19th century the town was the administrative and trading centre of an area (kray) and a centre for bone-carving, icon-painting and silverware. Despite the town’s size, only wooden houses and churches were built until the beginning of the 18th century; brick was introduced only after devastating fires in 1702 and 1730. Churches dominate the panorama from the river. The cathedral of the Epiphany (1730–50s) in the town centre has a tall, pillar-shaped bell-tower and lavishly decorated side chapel in the Siberian Baroque style. East of this lies the church of the Resurrection (1730s–40s), decorated with ribbon brickwork. The church of the Dormition (late 18th century–early 19th), situated on a hill in the west of the town, has an elegant Baroque façade. The cathedral of the Saviour (1750s) stands within the monastery of the Transfiguration (founded 17th century), which is one of the oldest in Siberia. Its windows are framed by ceramic tiles in the form of rosettes, spirals and volutes. The gates (1780s) of the monastery have Baroque decoration. Some distance from the river lies the church of the Trinity (1770s–80s), which is decorated with finely traced brickwork. From ...

Article

Yixing  

Rose Kerr

Town in Jiangsu Province, China, situated c. 5 km west of Lake Tai, famous during the Qing period (1644–1911) and the 20th century for its high-quality teawares made of red stoneware. Most of the kilns lie to the south of Yixing in the village of Dingshuzhen.

It has been tentatively established that the earliest purplish-red Yixing stonewares were produced as early as the Song period (960–1279); examples include two pear-shaped vessels with dark purplish stoneware body and partial olive-brown glaze, found in a disused well in Zhenjiang, Jiangsu Province, in 1961 (see Lo, p. 15). Excavations in that area have revealed kilns as well as sherds of coarse red stoneware, including many fragments of teaware. The production of Yixing wares is first well documented for the mid-16th century (e.g. teapot from the tomb of the court official Wu Jing (d 1533); Nanjing, Jiangsu Prov. Mus.). It was at this time that the names of individual potters were first recorded. They adopted the practice for which Yixing became famous, that of marking their wares with their own signatures (e.g. hexagonal red stoneware teapot signed by ...

Article

J. Dumarçay

[Jogjakarta ; Jokjakarta ; Djogdjakarta ; Djokjakarta]

Indonesian city on the River Code in southern Central Java. A few kilometres to the south are Kerta, the capital of Sultan Agung of Mataram (reg 1613–45), destroyed by fire in 1634, and Plered, the capital of Sultan Amangkurat I (reg 1645–77), abandoned in 1680. The Mataram court was re-established in Kartasura, near Surakarta to the north, but disputes over succession led in 1755 to the division of the kingdom into two and the foundation of the two sultanates of Surakarta and Yogyakarta, the latter under the rule of Sultan Hamengkubuwono I (Mangkubumi). The city can be divided into two more or less concentric parts, the sultan’s palace (kraton), within its grounds, and the town around it. The palace was sacked by the British in 1812 and largely rebuilt from 1814. There remain, however, several parts from the 18th century; the most complete and the only dated one is the brick Masjid Selo (Stone Mosque), built in ...