BERLIN, the largest city of the German empire, the capital of the kingdom of Prussia. It is the principal residence of the German emperor and king of Prussia, the seat of the imperial parliament (Reichstag) and the Prussian diet (Landtag) and of the state offices of the empire, except of the supreme court of justice (Reichsgericht), which is fixed at Leipzig. It lies in a flat, sandy plain, 110 ft. above sea-level, on both banks of the navigable Spree, which intersects it from S.E. to N.W. The highest elevation in the immediate neighbourhood is the Kreuzberg (200 ft.), a hill in the southern suburb of Schöneberg, which commands a fine view of the city. The situation of Berlin, midway between the Elbe and the Oder, with which rivers it is connected by a web of waterways, at the crossing of the main roads from Silesia and Poland to the North Sea ports and from Saxony, Bohemia and Thuringia to the Baltic, made it in medieval days a place of considerable commercial importance. In modern times the great network of railways, of which it is the centre and which mainly follow the lines of the old roads, further established its position. Almost equidistant from the remotest frontiers of Prussia, from north to south, and from east to west, 180 m. from Hamburg and 84 from Stettin, its situation, so far from being prejudicial to its growth and prosperity, as was formerly often asserted, has been, in fact, the principal determining factor in its rapid rise to the position of the greatest industrial and commercial city on the continent of Europe. In point of wealth and population it ranks immediately after London and Paris.
The boundaries of the city have not been essentially extended since 1860, and though large and important suburbs have crept up and practically merged with it, its administrative area remains unchanged. It occupies about 29 sq. m., and has a length from E. to W. of 6 and a breadth from N. to S. of 51 m., contains nearly 1000 streets, has 87 squares and open spaces, 73 bridges and a population (1905) of 2,033,900 (including a garrison of about 22,000). If, however, the outer police district, known as “Greater Berlin,” embracing an area of about 10 m. radius from the centre, be included, the population amounts to about 31 millions.
Berlin is essentially a modern city, the quaint two-storied houses, which formerly characterized it, having given place to palatial business blocks, which somewhat dwarf the streets and squares, which once had an air of stately spaciousness. The bustle of the modern commercial city has superseded the austere dignity of the old Prussian capital. Thus the stranger entering it for the first time will find little to remind him of its past history. The oldest part of Berlin, the city and Alt-Kölln, built along the arms of the Spree, is, together with that portion of the town lying immediately west, the centre of business activity. The west end and the south-west are the residential quarters, the north-west is largely occupied by academic, scientific and military institutions, the north is the seat of machinery works, the north-east of the woollen manufactures, the east and south-east of the dyeing, furniture and metal industries, while in the south are great barracks and railway works.
In 1870 Berlin was practically bounded on the south by the Landwehr Canal, but it has since extended far beyond, and the Tempelhofer Feld, where military reviews are held, then practically in the country, is now surrounded by a dense belt of houses. The Landwehr Canal, leaving the Spree near the Schlesische Tor (gate), and rejoining it at Charlottenburg, after a course of 6 m., adds not a little to the charm of the southern and western districts, being flanked by fine boulevards and crossed by many handsome bridges. The object of this canal was to relieve the congestion of the water traffic in the heart of Berlin. It was superseded, however, in its turn by a new broad and deep canal opened in 1906, lying from 3 to 4 m. farther south. This, the Teltow Canal, leaves the Spree above Berlin at Köpenick, and running south of Rixdorf, Südende and Gross-Lichterfelde, enters the Havel at Teltow. This important engineering work was planned not only to afford a more convenient waterway between the upper Spree and the Havel (and thus to the Elbe), but was to remove from the city to its banks and vicinity those factories of which the noxious gases and other poisonous emanations were regarded as dangerous to the health of the community. A dislocation of the manufacturing factors has therefore been in progress, which with the creation of a “trans Tiberim” (as in ancient Rome) is, in many respects, altering the character and aspect of the metropolis.
The effect upon Berlin of the successful issue of the Franco-Prussian War of 1870–71 was electrical. The old Prussian capital girded itself at once to fulfil its new rôle. The concentration upon the city of a large garrison flushed with victory, and eager to emulate the vanquished foe in works of peace, and vie with them in luxury, was an incentive to Berliners to put forth all their energy. Besides the military, a tremendous immigration of civilian officials took place as the result of the new conditions, and, as accommodation was not readily available, rents rose to an enormous figure. Doubts were often expressed whether the capital would be able to bear the burden of empire, so enormous was the influx of new citizens. It is due to the magnificent services of the municipal council that the city was enabled to assimilate the hosts of newcomers, and it is to its indefatigable exertions that Berlin has in point of organization become the model city of Europe. In no other has public money been expended with such enlightened discretion, and in no other has the municipal system kept pace with such rapid growth and displayed greater resource in emergencies. In 1870 the sanitary conditions of Berlin were the worst of any city of Europe. It needed a Virchow to open the eyes of the municipality to the terrible waste of life such a state of things entailed. But open sewers, public pumps, cobble-paved roads, open market-places and overcrowded subterranean dwellings are now abolished. The city is excellently drained, well-paved, well-lighted and furnished with an abundant supply of filtered water, while the cellar dwellings have given place to light and airy tenements, and Berlin justly claims to rank among the cleanest and healthiest capitals in Europe. The year 1878 marks a fresh starting-point in the development of the city. In that year Berlin was the meeting-place of the congress which bears its name. The recognition of Germany as a leading factor in the world’s counsels had been given, and the people of Berlin could indulge in the task of embellishing the capital in a manner befitting its position. From this time forward, state, municipal and private enterprise have worked hand in hand to make the capital cosmopolitan. The position it has at length attained is due not alone to the enterprise of its citizens and the municipality. The brilliancy of the court and the triumph of the sense of unity in the German nation over the particularism of the smaller German states have conduced more than all else to bring about this result. It has become the chief pleasure town of Germany; and though the standard of morality, owing to the enormous influx of people bent on amusement, has become lower, yet there is so much healthy, strenuous activity in intellectual life and commercial rivalry as to entitle it, despite many moral deficiencies, to be regarded as the centre of life and learning in Germany. Dr A. Shadwell (Industrial Efficiency, London, 1906) describes it as representing “the most complete application of science, order and method of public life,” adding “it is a marvel of civic administration, the most modern and most perfectly organized city that there is.”
Streets.—The social and official life of the capital centres round Unter den Linden, which runs from the royal palace to the Brandenburger Tor. This street, one of the finest and most spacious in Europe, nearly a mile in length, its double avenue divided by a favourite promenade, planted with lime trees, presents Berlin life in all its varying aspects. Many historical events have taken place in this famous boulevard, notably the entry of the troops in 1871, and the funeral pageant of the emperor Willaim I. South of Unter den Linden lies the Friedrichstadt, with its parallel lines of straight streets, including the Behren-strasse—(the seat of finance)—the Wilhelm-strasse, with the palace of the imperial chancellor, the British embassy, and many government offices—the official quarter of the capital—and the busy Leipziger-strasse, running from the Potsdamer-platz to the Dönhoff-platz. This great artery and Unter den Linden are crossed at right angles by the Friedrich-strasse, 2 m. long, flanked by attractive shops and restaurants, among them the beer palaces of the great breweries. In the city proper, the König-strasse and the Kaiser-Wilhelm-strasse, the latter a continuation of Unter den Linden, are the chief streets; while in the fashionable south-west quarter Viktoria-strasse, Bellevue-strasse, Potsdamer-strasse and Kurfürsten-strasse and the Kurfürstendamm are the most imposing. Among the most important public squares are the Opern-platz, around or near which stand the opera house, the royal library, the university and the armoury; the Gendarmen-markt, with the royal theatre in its centre, the Schloss-platz; the Lustgarten, between the north side of the royal palace, the cathedral and the old and new museums; the Pariser-platz with the French embassy, at the Brandenburg Gate; the Königs-platz, with the column of Victory, the Reichstagsgebäude and the Bismarck and Moltke monuments; the Wilhelms-platz; the circular Belle-Alliance-platz, with a column commemorating the battle of Waterloo; and, in the western district, the spacious Lützow-platz.
Bridges.—Of the numerous bridges, the most remarkable are the Schloss-brücke, built after designs by Schinkel in 1822–1824, with eight colossal figures of white marble, representing ideal stages in a warrior’s life, the work of Drake, Albert Wolff and other eminent sculptors; the Kurfürsten—or Lange-brücke, built 1692–1695, and restored in 1895, with an equestrian statue of the great elector, and the Kaiser-Wilhelm-brücke (1886–1889) connecting the Lustgarten with the Kaiser-Wilhelm-strasse in the inner town. In the modern residential quarter are the Potsdamer-Viktoria-brücke, which carries the traffic from two converging streets into the outer Potsdamer-strasse, and the Herkules-brucke connecting the Lützow-platz with the Tiergarten. The first three cross the Spree and the last two the Landwehr Canal.
Churches.—Berlin, until the last half of the 10th century, was in respect of its churches probably the poorest of the capitals of Christendom, and the number of worshippers on an average Sunday was then less than 2% of the population. The city now contains over a hundred places of worship, of which ten are Roman Catholic, and nine Jewish synagogues. Of the older Evangelical churches but four date from medieval days, and of them only the Marien-kirche, with a tomb of Field marshal O. C. von Sparr (1605–1665), and the Nikolai-kirche are particularly noteworthy. Of a later date, though of no great pretensions to architectural merit, are the Petri-kirche with a lofty spire, the Französische-kirche and the Neue-kirche with dome-capped towers, on the Gendarmen-markt, and the round, Roman Catholic St Hedwigs—kirche behind the Opera-house. The Garrison church in the centre of the city, which was erected in 1722 and contained numerous historical trophies, was destroyed by fire in 1908. Of modern erections the new cathedral (Dom), on the Spree, which replaces the old building pulled down in 1853, stands first. It is a clumsy, though somewhat imposing edifice of sandstone in Italian Renaissance style, and has a dome rising, with the lantern, to a height of 380 ft. The Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gedächtnis-kirche (in the suburb Charlottenburg) with a lofty spire, the Dankes-kirche (in commemoration of the emperor William I.’s escape from the hand of the assassin, Nobiling, in 1878) in Wedding, and the Kaiser-Friedrich-Gedächtnis-kirche on a grassy knoll in the north of the Tiergarten are also worthy of notice. In the Monbijou Park, on the north bank of the Spree, is the pretty English church of St George. The main Jewish synagogue, a fine building in oriental style, erected in 1866, stands in a commanding position in the Oranienburger-strasse and is remarkable for its stained glass. Berlin was a walled city until 1867–1868. Of the former nineteen city gates only one remains, the Brandenburg Gate (1789–1793), an imitation of the Propylaea at Athens. It is 201 ft. broad and nearly 65 ft. high, and is supported by twelve Doric columns, each 44 ft. in height, and surmounted by a car of victory (Auriga), which, taken by Napoleon to Paris in 1807, was brought back by the Prussians in 1814. The gate has been enlarged by two lateral colonnades, each supported by sixteen columns.
Public Buildings.—In secular buildings Berlin is very rich. Entering the city at the Potsdam Gate, traversing a few hundred yards of the Leipziger-strasse, turning into Wilhelm-strasse, and following it to Unter den Linden, then beginning at the Brandenburg Gate and proceeding down Unter den Linden to its end, one passes, among other buildings, the following, many of them of great architectural merit—the admiralty, the ministry of commerce, the ministry of war, the ministry of public works, the palace of Prince Frederick Leopold, the palace of the imperial chancellor, the foreign office, the ministry of justice, the residences of the ministers of the interior and of public worship, the French and the Russian embassies, the arcade, the palace of the emperor William I., the university, the royal library, the opera, the armoury, the palace of the emperor Frederick III., the Schloss-brücke, the royal palace, the old and new museums and the national gallery. At a short distance from this line are the new town-hall, the mint, the imperial bank and the royal theatre. Berlin differs from all other great capitals in this respect that with the exception of the royal palace, which dates from the 16th century, all its public buildings are modern. This palace, standing in the very heart of the city, is a huge quadrangular building, with four courts, and is surmounted by a dome 220 ft. high. It contains more than 600 rooms and halls; among the latter the Weisse-saal used for great court pageants, the halls of the chapters of the Black and the Red Eagle orders, a picture gallery and a chapel. The first floor overlooking the Schloss-platz is the Berlin residence of the emperor, and that square is embellished by a huge fountain (Neptuns-brunnen) by R. Begas. Facing the west portal is the monument to the emperor William I., and before the north gate, opening upon the Lustgarten, are the famous bronze groups, the “horse-tamers” by Clodt, the gift of the emperor Nicholas I. of Russia. The establishment of the imperial government in Berlin naturally brought with it the erection of a large number of public buildings, and the great prosperity of the country, as well as the enhanced national feeling, has enabled them to be built on a scale of splendour befitting the capital of an empire. First in importance is the Reichstagsgebäude (see Architecture, plate ix. fig. 47), in which the federal council (Bundesrat) and the imperial parliament (Reichstag) hold their sittings. A special feature is the library, which is exceedingly rich in works on constitutional law. A new house has also been built for the Prussian parliament (Landtag) in the Albrecht-strasse. Other new official buildings are the patent office on the site of the old ministry of the interior; the new ministry of posts (with post museum) at the corner of the Mauer-strasse and Leipziger-strasse; the central criminal court in Moabit; the courts of first instance on the Alexander-platz; the ministry of police, and the Reichsversicherungsamt, the centre for the great system of state insurance. In addition to these, many buildings have been restored and enlarged, chief among them being the armoury (Zeughaus), the war office and the ministry of public works, while the royal mews (Marstall) has been entirely rebuilt with an imposing façade.
Among the public monuments comes first, in excellence, Ranch’s celebrated statue of Frederick the Great, which stands in Unter den Linden opposite the palace of the emperor William I.; and in size the monument to the emperor William I. (by R. Begas), erected opposite the west portal of the royal palace. The space for the site was gained by pulling down the old houses composing the Schlossfreiheit and damming the Spree. The monument, which cost £200,000, is surmounted by an equestrian statue of the emperor in a martial cloak, his right hand resting on a field marshal’s baton, reining in his charger, which is led by a female genius of peace. The high pedestal on which these figures stand is surrounded by an Ionic colonnade. The equestrian statue of the great elector on the Lange-brücke has been already mentioned. In the Lustgarten is a statue of Frederick William III., by Wolff; in the Tiergarten, Drake’s marble monument to the same ruler; and in the mausoleum in the park in Charlottenburg he and his queen, Louisa, are sculptured in marble by Rauch. Here also lie the emperor William I. and the empress Augusta under marble effigies by Encke. A second group of monuments on the Wilhelms-platz commemorates the generals of the Seven Years’ War; and a third in the neighbourhood of the opera-house the generals who fought against Napoleon I. On the Kreuzberg a Gothic monument in bronze was erected by Frederick William III. to commemorate the victories of 1813–1815; and in the centre of the Königs-platz stands a lofty column in honour of the triumphs of 1864, 1866 and 1870–1871, surmounted by a gilded figure of Victory. Literature, science and art are represented in different parts of the city by statues and busts of Rauch, Schinkel, Thaer, Beuth, Schadow, Winckelmann, Schiller, Hegel and Jahn. On the Königs-platz between the column of Victory and the Reichstagsgebäude, and immediately facing the western façade of the latter, is the bronze statue of Bismarck, unveiled in 1901, a figure 20 ft. in height standing on a granite base. From the south side of the Königs-platz crossing the Tiergarten and intersecting the avenue from the Brandenburg Gate to Charlottenburg runs the broad Sieges-allee adorned by thirty-two groups of marble statuary representing famous rulers of the house of Hohenzollern, the gift of the emperor William II. to the city. The Tiergarten, the beautiful west-end park with its thickets of dense undergrowth and winding lanes and lakes has lost somewhat of its sylvan character owing to building encroachments on the north side and the laying out of new rides and drives. It has, in addition to those above enumerated, statues of Queen Louisa, Goethe and Lessing.
Communications.—Berlin is the centre of the North German network of railways. No fewer than twelve main lines concentrate upon it. Internal communication is provided for by the Ringbahn, or outer circle, which was opened in 1871, and by a well-devised system connects the termini of the various main lines. The through traffic coming from east and west is carried by the Stadtbahn, or city railway, which also connects with and forms an integral part of the outer circle. This line runs through the heart of the city, and was originally a private enterprise. Owing, however, to the failure of the company, the work was taken in hand by the state, and the line opened in 1878. It has four tracks—two for the main-line through traffic, and two for local and suburban service, and is carried at a height of about 20 ft. above the streets. Its length is 12 m., the total cost 33 millions sterling. The chief stations are Zoologischer Garten, Friedrich-strasse, Alexander-platz and Schlesischer Bahnhof. Lying apart from the system are the Lehrter Bahnhof for Hamburg and Bremen, the Stettiner for Baltic ports, and the Görlitzer, Anhalter and Potsdamer termini for traffic to the south, of which the last two are fine specimens of railway architecture. Internal communication is also provided for by an excellent system of electric tram-lines, by an overhead electric railway running from the Zoologischer Garten to the Schlesische Tor with a branch to the Potsdam railway station, and by an underground railway laid at a shallow depth under the Leipziger-strasse. Most of the cabs (victorias and broughams) have fare-indicators. Steamboats ply above and below the city.
Industry, Trade and Commerce.—It is in respect of its manufacture and trade that Berlin has attained its present high pitch of economic prosperity. More than 50% of its working population are engaged in industry, which embraces almost all branches, of which new ones have lately sprung into existence, whilst most of the older have taken a new lease of life. The old wool industry, for example, has become much extended, and now embraces products such as shawls, carpets, hosiery, &c. Its silk manufactures, formerly so important, have, however, gradually gone back. It is particularly in the working of iron, steel and cloth, and in the by-products of these, that Berlin excels. The manufacture of machinery and steam-engines shows an enormous development. No fewer than 100 large firms, many of them of world-wide reputation, are engaged in this branch alone. Among the chief articles of manufacture and production are railway plant, sewing machines, bicycles, steel pens, chronometers, electric and electric-telegraph plant, bronze, chemicals, soap, lamps, linoleum, china, pianofortes, furniture, gloves, buttons, artificial flowers and ladies’ mantles, the last of an annual value exceeding £5,000,000. It has extensive breweries and vies in the amount of the output of this production with Munich. Berlin is also the great centre and the chief market for speculation in corn and other cereals which reach it by water from Poland, Austria and South Russia, while in commerce in spirits it rivals Hamburg. It is also a large publishing centre, and has become a serious rival to Leipzig in this regard.
The Börse, where 4000 persons daily do business, is the chief market in Germany for stocks and shares, and its dealings are of great influence upon the gold market of the world. Numerous banks of world-wide reputation, doing an extensive international business, have their seats in Berlin, chief among them, in addition to the Reichs-bank, being the Berliner Kassen-Verein, the Diskonto-Gesellschaft, the Deutsche Bank, and the Boden-Kredit Bank.
Learning and Art.—Berlin is becoming the centre of the intellectual life of the nation. The Friedrich Wilhelm University, although young in point of foundation, has long outstripped its great rival Leipzig in numbers, and can point with pride to the fact that its teaching staff has yielded to none in the number of illustrious names. It was founded in 1810, when Prussia had lost her celebrated university of Halle, which Napoleon had included in his newly created kingdom of Westphalia. It was as a weapon of war, as well as a nursery of learning, that Frederick William III. and the great men who are associated with its origin, called it into existence. Wilhelm von Humboldt was at that time at the head of the educational department of the kingdom, and men like Fichte and Schleiermacher worked on the popular mind. Within the first ten years of its existence it counted among its professors such names as Neander, Savigny, Eichhorn, Böckh, Bekker, Hegel, Raumer, Niebuhr and Buttmann. Later followed men like Hengstenberg, Homeyer, Bethmann-Hollweg, Puchta, Stahl and Heffter; Schelling, Trendelenburg, Bopp, the brothers Grimm, Zumpt, Carl Richter; later still, Twesten and Dorner, Gneist and Hinschius; Langenbeck, Bardeleben, Virchow, Du-Bois Reymond; von Ranke, Curtius, Lipsius, Hofmann the chemist, Kiepert the geographer; Helmholtz, van’t Hoff, Koch, E. Fischer, Waldeyer and von Bergmann among scientists and surgeons; Mommsen, Treitschke and Sybel among historians, Harnack among theologians, Brunner among jurists. Taking ordinary, honorary, extraordinary professors and licensed lecturers (Privat-docenten) together, its professorial strength consisted, in 1904–1905, of 23 teachers in the faculty of theology, 32 in that of law, 175 in that of medicine and 227 in that of philosophy—altogether 457. The number of matriculated students during the same period was 7154, as against 5488 in the preceding summer term. The number of matriculated students is usually greater in winter than in summer; the reason of the disproportion being that in the summer university towns having pleasant surroundings, such as Bonn, Heidelberg, Kiel and Jena, are more frequented. Berlin is essentially a Prussian university—of students from non-German states, Russia sends most, then the United States of America, while Great Britain is credited with comparatively few. It is, however, in the ugly palace of Prince Henry of Prussia, which was given for the purpose in the days of Prussian poverty and distress, that the university is still housed, and although some internal rearrangement has been effected, no substantial alterations have been made to meet the ever-increasing demand for lecture-room accommodation. The garden towards Unter den Linden is adorned by a bronze statue of Helmholtz; the marble statues of Wilhelm and Alexander von Humboldt, which were formerly placed on either side of the gate, have been removed to the adjacent garden. Technical education is provided in the magnificent buildings erected at a cost of £100,000 in Charlottenburg, which are equipped with all the apparatus for the teaching of science. Among other institutions of university rank and affiliated to it are the school of mines, the agricultural college, the veterinary college, the new seminary for oriental languages, and the high school for music. The geodetic institute has been removed to Potsdam. The university is, moreover, rich in institutions for the promotion of medical and chemical science, for the most part housed in buildings belonging to the governing body. There should also be mentioned the Royal Academy of Sciences, founded in 1700. The name of Leibnitz is associated with its foundation, and it was raised to the rank of a royal academy by Frederick the Great in 1743. The Royal Academy of Arts is under the immediate protection of the king, and is governed by a director and senate. There is also an academy of vocal music.
Schools.—Berlin possesses fifteen Gymnasia (classical schools, for the highest branches of the learned professions), of which four are under the direct supervision of the provincial authorities and have the prefix königlich (royal), while the remaining eleven are municipal and under the control of the civic authorities. They are attended by about 7000 scholars, of whom a fourth are Jews. There are also eight Real-gymnasia (or “modern” schools), numerous Real-schulen (commercial schools), public high schools for girls, and commodious and excellently organized elementary schools.
Museums.—The buildings of the royal museum are divided into the old and new museums. The former is an imposing edifice situated on the north-east side of the Lustgarten, facing the royal palace. It was built in the reign of Frederick William III. from designs by Schinkel. Its portico supported by eighteen colossal Ionic columns is reached by a wide flight of steps. The back and side walls of the portico are covered with frescoes, from designs by Schinkel, representing the world’s progress from chaos to organic and developed life. The sides of the flight of steps support equestrian bronze groups of the Amazon by Kiss, and the Lion-slayer by Albert Wolff. Under the portico are monuments of the sculptors Rauch and Schadow, the architect Schinkel, and the art critic Winckelmann. The interior consists of a souterrain, and of a first floor, entered from the portico through bronze doors, after designs by Stüler, weighing 71 tons, and executed at a cost of £3600. This floor consists of a rotunda, and of halls and cabinets of sculpture. The second floor, which formerly contained the national gallery of paintings, is occupied by a collection of northern antiquities and by the Schliemann treasures.
The new museum, connected with the old museum by a covered corridor, is, in its internal arrangements and decorations, one of the finest structures in the capital. The lowest of its three floors contains the Egyptian museum; on the first floor plaster casts of ancient, medieval and modern sculpture are found, while the second contains a cabinet of engravings. On the walls of the grand marble staircase, which rises to the full height of the building, Kaulbach’s cyclus of stereochromic pictures is painted, representing the six great epochs of human progress, from the confusion of tongues at the Tower of Babel and the dispersion of the nations to the Reformation.
The national gallery, a fine building surrounded by a Corinthian colonnade and lying between the royal museums and the Spree, contains a number of modern German paintings. Behind these buildings, again, is the Pergamum museum, which houses a unique collection, the result of the excavations at Pergamum. Still farther away, on a triangular plot of land enclosed by the two arms of the Spree and the metropolitan railway, stands the Kaiser Friedrich museum (1904). This edifice, in the Italian baroque style, surmounted by a dome, possesses but little architectural merit, and its position is so confined that great ingenuity had to be employed in its internal arrangements to meet the demands of space, but its collection of pictures is one of the finest in Europe. Hither were removed, from the old and new museums, the national gallery of pictures, the statuary of the Christian epoch and the numismatic collection. The gallery of paintings, on the first floor, is distributed into the separate schools of Germany, Italy, Flanders and Holland, while another of the central rooms embraces those of Spain, France and England. The collection, which in 1874 contained 1300 paintings, was then enriched by the purchase by the Prussian government for £51,000 of the Suermondt collection which, rich in pictures of the Dutch and Flemish schools, contained also a few by Spanish, Italian and French masters. The gallery as a whole has been happily arranged, and there are few great painters of whom it does not contain one or more examples. The Kunst-gewerbe museum, at the corner of the Königgrätzer-strasse and Albrecht-strasse, contains valuable specimens of applied art.
Theatres.—In nothing has the importance of Berlin become more conspicuous than in theatrical affairs. In addition to the old-established Opernhaus and Schauspielhaus, which are supported by the state, numerous private playhouses have been erected, notably the Lessing and the Deutsches theatres, and it is in these that the modern works by Wildenbruch, Sudermann, and Hauptmann have been produced, and it may be said that it is in Berlin that the modern school of German drama has its home. In music Berlin is not able to vie with Leipzig, Dresden or Munich, yet it is well represented by the Conservatorium, with which the name of Joachim is connected, while the more modern school is represented by Xaver Scharwenka.
Government, Administration and Politics.—On the 1st of April 1881 Berlin was divided off from the province of Brandenburg and since forms a separate administrative district. But the chief presidency (Oberpräsidium), the Consistory, the provincial school-board, and the board of health of the province of Brandenburg remain tribunals of last instance to which appeals lie from Berlin. The government is partly semi-military (police) and partly municipal. The ministry of police (a branch of the home office) consists of six departments: (1) general; (2) trade; (3) building; (4) criminal; (5) passports; (6) markets. It controls the fire brigade, has the general inspection over all strangers, and is responsible for public order. The civil authority (Magistrat) consists of a chief mayor (Oberbürgermeister), a mayor (Bürgermeister), and a city council (Stadtrat). The Oberbürgermeister, who is ex officio a member of the Prussian Upper House, and the Bürgermeister are elected by the common council (Stadtverordnetenversammlung) of 144 members, i.e. three delegates chosen by manhood suffrage for each ward of the city; but the election is subject to the veto of the king without reason given. The Stadtrat consists of 32 members, of whom 15 are paid officials (including 2 syndics, 2 councillors for building, and 2 for education), while 17 serve gratuitously. For general work the Magistrat and the Stadtverordnetenversammlung coalesce, and committees are appointed for various purposes out of the whole body, these being usually presided over by members of the Magistrat. Their jurisdiction extends to water-supply, the drainage, lighting and cleaning of the streets, the care of the poor, hospitals and schools. Politically the city is divided into six Reichstag and four Landtag constituencies, returning six and nine members respectively, and it must be noted that in the case of the Landtag the allocation of seats dated from 1860, so that the city, in proportion to its population, was in 1908 much under-represented. It should have had twenty-five members instead of nine.
|Emery Walker sc.|
Population.—The stupendous growth of the population of Berlin during the last century is best illustrated by the following figures. In 1816 it contained 197,717 inhabitants; in 1849, 431,566; in 1871, 826,341; in 1880, 1,122,330; 1890, 1,578,794, and in 1905, 2,033,900. The birth-rate is about 30, and the death-rate 20 per 1000 inhabitants a year. Illegitimate births amount to about 15% of the whole. According to religion, about 84% are Protestants, 10% Roman Catholics and 5% Jews, but owing to the great number of Jews who for social and other reasons ostensibly embrace the Christian faith, these last figures do not actually represent the number of Jews by descent living in the city.
Environs.—Marvellous as has been the transformation in the city itself, no less surprising results have been effected since 1875 in the surroundings of Berlin. On the east, north and west, the city is surrounded at a distance of some 5 m. from its centre by a thick belt of pine woods, the Jungfernheide, the Spandauer Forst, and the Grunewald, the last named stretching away in a south-westerly direction as far as Potsdam, and fringing the beautiful chain of Havel lakes. These forests enjoyed until quite recent times an unenviable notoriety as the camping-ground and lurking-place of footpads and other disorderly characters. After the opening of the circular railway in 1871, private enterprise set to work to develop these districts, and a “villa colony” was built at the edge of the Grunewald between the station West-end and the Spandauer Bock. From these beginnings, owing mainly to the expansion of the important suburb of Charlottenburg, has resulted a complete transformation of the eastern part of the Grunewald into a picturesque and delightful villa suburb, which is connected by railway, steam-tramway and a magnificent boulevard—the Kurfürstendamm—with the city. Nowadays the little fishing villages on the shores of the lakes, notably the Wannsee, cater for the recreation of the Berliners, while palatial summer residences of wealthy merchants occupy the most prominent sites. Suburban Berlin may be said to extend practically to Potsdam.
Traffic.—The public streets have a total length of about 350 m., and a large staff of workmen is regularly employed in maintaining and cleaning the public roads and parks. The force is well controlled, and the work of cleaning and removing snow after a heavy fall is thoroughly and efficiently carried out. The less important thoroughfares are mostly paved with the so-called Vienna paving, granite bricks of medium size, while the principal streets, and especially those upon which the traffic is heavy, have either asphalt or wood paving.
Water-Supply and Drainage.—The water-supply is mainly derived from works on the Müggel and Tegeler lakes, the river water being carefully filtered through sand. The drainage system is elaborate, and has stood the test of time. The city is divided into twelve radial systems, each with a pumping station, and the drainage is forced through five mains to eighteen sewage farms, each of which is under careful sanitary supervision, in respect both of the persons employed thereon, and the products, mainly milk, passing thence to the city for human consumption. Only in a few isolated cases has any contamination been traced to fever or other zymotic germs. In this connexion it is worth noting that the infectious diseases hospital has a separate system of drainage which is carefully disinfected, and not allowed to be employed for the purposes of manure.
Hospitals.—In no other city of the world is the hospital organization so well appointed as in Berlin, or are the sick poor tended with greater solicitude. State, municipal and private charity here again join hands in the prompt relief of sickness and cases of urgency. The municipal hospitals are six in number, the largest of which is the Virchow hospital, situate in Moabit and opened in 1906. It is arranged on the pavilion system, contains 2000 beds, and is one of the most splendidly equipped hospitals in the world. The cost amounted to £900,000. Next comes that of Friedrichshain, also built on the pavilion system, while the state controls six (not including the prison infirmaries) of which the world-renowned Charité in the Luisen-strasse is the principal. The hospitals of the nursing sisters (Diakonissen Anstalten) number 8, while there are 60 registered private hospitals under the superintendence of responsible doctors and under the inspection of government.
Charities.—Berlin is also very richly endowed with charitable institutions for the relief of pauperism and distress. In addition to the municipal support of the poor-houses there are large funds derived from bequests for the relief of the necessitous and deserving poor; while night shelters and people’s kitchens have been organized on an extensive scale for the temporary relief of the indigent unemployed. For the former several of the arches of the city railway have been utilized, and correspond in internal arrangement to like shelters instituted by the Salvation Army in London and various other cities.
Markets.—Open market-places in Berlin are things of the past, and their place has been taken by airy and commodious market halls. Of these, 14 in number, the central market, close to the Alexander-platz station of the city railway with which it is connected by an admirable service of lifts for the rapid unloading of goods, is the finest. It has a ground area of about 17,000 sq. yds., and is fitted with more than 2000 stalls. The other markets are conveniently situated at various accessible places within the city, and the careful police supervision to which they are subjected, both in the matter of general cleanliness, and in the careful examination of all articles of food exposed for sale, has tended to the general health and comfort of the population.
The central cattle market and slaughter-houses for the inspection and supply of the fresh meat consumed in the metropolis occupy an extensive area in the north-east of the city on the Ringbahn, upon which a station has been erected for the accommodation of meat trains and passengers attending the market. The inspection is rigorously carried out, and only carcases which have been stamped as having been certified good are permitted to be taken away for human consumption.
History.—The etymology of the word “Berlin” is doubtful. Some derive it from Celtic roots—ber, small, short, and lyn, a lake; others regard it as a Wend word, meaning a free, open place; others, again, refer it to the word werl, a river island. Another authority derives it from the German word Brühl, a marshy district, and the Slavonic termination in; thus Brühl, by the regular transmutation Bührl (compare Ger. bren-nen and Eng. burn), Bürhlin. More recent research, however, seems to have established the derivation from Wehr, dam.
Similar obscurity rests on the origin of the city. The hypotheses which carried it back to the early years of the Christian era have been wholly abandoned. Even the margrave Albert the Bear (d. 1170) is no longer unquestionably regarded as its founder, and the tendency of opinion now is to date its origin from the time of his great-grandsons, Otto III. and John I. When first alluded to, what is now Berlin was spoken of as two towns, Kölln and Berlin. The first authentic document concerning the former is from the year 1237, concerning the latter from the year 1244, and it is with these dates that the trustworthy history of the city begins. In 1307 the first attempt was made to combine the councils of Kölln and Berlin, but the experiment was abandoned four years later, and the two towns continued their separate existence till 1432, when the establishment of a common council for both led to disturbances of which the outcome was that Frederick II. the Iron in 1442 abolished this arrangement, seriously curtailed the privileges of both towns, and began the building of a castle at Kölln. A feud between the elector and the Berliners ended in the defeat of the latter, who in 1448 were forced to accept the constitution of 1442. From this time Berlin became and continued to be the residence of the Hohenzollerns, the elector John Cicero (1486–1499) being the first to establish a permanent court inside the walls. It was not, however, until the time of King Frederick William I. that the sovereigns ceased to date their official acts from Kölln. In 1539, under the elector Joachim II., Berlin embraced the Lutheran religion. Henceforth the history of Berlin was intimately bound up with the house of Hohenzollern. The conversion of the elector John Sigismund in 1613 to the Reformed (Calvinist) faith was hotly resented by the Berliners and led to bloody riots in the city. The Thirty Years’ War all but ruined the city, the population of which sank from some 14,000 in 1600 to less than 8000 in 1650. It was restored and the foundations of its modern splendour were laid by the Great Elector, by the time of whose death (1688) the population had risen to some 20,000. During this period several suburbs had begun to grow up, Friedrichswerder in 1667 and the Dorotheenstadt, so named in 1676 after the electress Dorothea its founder. In 1688 Frederick III. (afterwards King Frederick I.) began the Friedrichstadt, completed by Frederick William I. Under Frederick I., who did much to embellish the city as the royal Residenzstadt, the separate administrations of the quarters of Berlin, Kölln, Friedrichstadt, Friedrichswerder and Dorotheenstadt were combined, and the separate names were absorbed in that of Berlin. The fortifications begun in 1658 were finally demolished under Frederick the Great in 1745, and the Neue Friedrich-strasse, the Alexander-strasse and the Wall-strasse were laid out on their site.
Twice during the Seven Years’ War Berlin was attacked by the enemy: in 1757 by the Austrians, who penetrated into the suburbs and levied a heavy contribution, and in 1760 by the Russians, who bombarded the city, penetrated into it, and only retired on payment of a ransom of 1,500,000 thalers (£225,000). After the disastrous campaign of Jena, Berlin suffered much during the French occupation (24th October 1806 to 1st December 1808). In spite of these misfortunes, however, the progress of the city was steady. In 1809 the present municipal government was instituted. In 1810 the university was founded. After the alliance of Prussia and Russia in 1812 Berlin was again occupied by the French, but in March 1813 they were finally driven out. The period following the close of the war saw great activity in building, especially in the erection of many noble monuments and public buildings, e.g. those by the architect Karl Friedrich Schinkel. The most notable event in the history of Berlin during the 19th century, prior to the Franco-German War, was the March revolution of 1848 (see Germany: History, and Frederick William IV., king of Prussia). The effect of the war of 1870–71 on the growth of Berlin has been sufficiently indicated already.
Authorities.—For the history of Berlin see the publications of the “Verein für die Geschichte Berlins”; the Berlinische Chronik nebst Urkundenbuch, and the periodicals Der Bär (1875, &c.) and Mitteilungen (1884, &c.). Of histories may be mentioned A. Streckfuss, 500 Jahre Berliner Geschichte (new ed. by Fernbach, 1900); Berlin im 19ten Jahrhundert (4 vols., 1867–1869), and Statistisches Jahrbuch der Stadt Berlin (1904–1905); Fidiein, Historisch-diplomatische Beiträge zur Geschichte der Stadt Berlin (5 vols., 1837–1842); Brockhaus, Konversations-Lexikon (1904); Meyer, Konversations-Lexikon (1904); Baedeker, Führer durch Berlin; Woeri, Führer durch Berlin; J. Pollard, The Corporation of Berlin (Edinburgh, 1893); A. Shadwell, Industrial Efficiency (London, 1906); Berliner Jahrbuch für Handel und Industrie (1905); and O. Schwebel, Geschichte der Stadt Berlin (Berlin, 1888). (P. A. A.)
Berlin, Congress and Treaty of. The events that led up to the assembling of the congress of Berlin, the outcome of which was the treaty of the 13th of July 1878, are described elsewhere (see Europe: History; Turkey: History; Russo-Turkish War). Here it must suffice to say that the terms of the treaty of San Stefano (3rd March 1878), by which the Russo-Turkish War had been brought to a conclusion, seemed to those of the other powers who were most interested scarcely less fatal to the Ottoman dominion than that Russian occupation of Constantinople which Great Britain had risked a war to prevent. By this instrument Bulgaria was to become a practically independent state, under the nominal suzerainty of the sultan, bounded by the Danube, the Black Sea, the Aegean and Albania, and cutting off the latter from the remnant of Rumelia which, with Constantinople, was to be left to the Turks. At the same time the other Christian principalities, Servia and Montenegro, were largely increased in size and their independence definitively recognized; and the proposals of the powers with regard to Bosnia and Herzegovina, communicated to the Ottoman plenipotentiaries at the first sitting of the conference of Constantinople (23rd December 1876), were to be immediately executed. These provisions seemed to make Russia permanently arbiter of the fate of the Balkan peninsula, the more so since the vast war indemnity of 1,400,000,000 roubles exacted in the treaty promised to cripple the resources of the Ottoman government for years to come.
The two powers whose interests were most immediately threatened by the terms of the peace were Austria and Great Britain. The former especially, refusing to be bribed by the Russian offer of Bosnia and Herzegovina, saw herself cut off from all chance of expansion in the Balkan peninsula and threatened with the establishment there of the paramount power of Russia, a peril it had been her traditional policy to avert. On the 5th of February, accordingly, Count Andrássy issued a circular note, addressed to the signatory powers of the treaty of Paris of 1856 and the London protocol of 1871, suggesting a congress for the purpose of establishing “the agreement of Europe on the modifications which it may become necessary to introduce into the above-mentioned treaties” in view of the preliminaries of peace signed by Russia and Turkey. This appeal to the sanctity of international engagements, traditional in the diplomatic armoury of Austria, and strengthened by so recent a precedent as that of 1871, met with an immediate response. On the 1st of April Lord Salisbury had already addressed a circular note to the British embassies refusing on behalf of the British government to recognize any arrangements made in the peace preliminaries, calculated to modify European treaties, “unless they were made the subject of a formal agreement among the parties to the treaty of Paris,” and quoting the “essential principle of the law of nations” promulgated in the London protocol. By Great Britain therefore the Austrian proposal was at once accepted. Germany was very willing to fall in with the views of her Austrian ally and share in a council in which, having no immediate interests of her own, Bismarck could win new laurels in his rôle of “honest broker.” In these circumstances Russia could not but accept the principle of a congress. She tried, however, to limit the scope of its powers by suggesting the exclusion of certain clauses of the treaty from its reference, and pointed out (circular of Prince Gorchakov, April 9th) that Russia had not been the first nor the only Power to violate the treaties in question. The answer of Lord Beaconsfield was to mobilize the militia and bring Indian troops to the Mediterranean; and finally Russia, finding that the diplomatic support which she had expected from Bismarck failed her, consented to submit the whole treaty without reserve to the congress.
On the 3rd of June Count Münster, in the name of the German government, issued the formal invitation to the congress. The congress met, under the presidency of Prince Bismarck, at Berlin on the 13th of June. Great Britain was represented by Lord Beaconsfield, Lord Salisbury and Lord Odo Russell, ambassador at Berlin; Germany by Prince Bismarck, Baron Ernst von Bülow and Prince Chlodwig von Hohenlohe-Schillingsfürst, ambassador at Paris; Austria by Count Andrássy, Count Louis Károlyi and Baron Heinrich Karl von Haymerle, ambassador at Rome; France by William H. Waddington, the Comte de Saint-Vallier, ambassador at Berlin, and Félix Hippolyte Desprez, director of political affairs in the department for foreign affairs; Russia by the chancellor, Prince Gorchakov, Count Peter Shuvalov, ambassador to the court of St James’s, and Paul d’Oubril, ambassador at Berlin; Turkey by Alexander Catheodory Pasha, minister of public works, All Pasha, mushir of the Ottoman armies, and Sadullah Bey, ambassador at Berlin. The bases of the conferences had, of course, been settled beforehand, and the final act of the congress was signed by the plenipotentiaries mentioned above exactly a month after the opening of the congress, on the 13th of July.
The treaty of Berlin consists in all of sixty-four articles, of which it will be sufficient to note those which have had a special bearing on subsequent international developments. So far as they affect the territorial boundaries fixed by the treaties of Paris and San Stefano it will be sufficient to refer to the sketch map in the article Europe: History. By Art. I. Bulgaria was “constituted an autonomous and tributary principality under the suzerainty of H.I.M. the Sultan”; it was to have “a Christian government and a national militia,” Art. II. fixed the boundaries of the new state and provided for their delimitation by a European commission, which was “to take into consideration the necessity for H.I.M. the Sultan to be able to defend the Balkan frontiers of Eastern Rumelia.” Arts. III. to XII. provide for the election of a prince for Bulgaria, the machinery for settling the new constitution, the adjustment of the relations of the new Bulgarian government to the Ottoman empire and its subjects (including the question of tribute, the amount of which was, according to Art. XII., to be settled by agreement of the signatory powers “at the close of the first year of the working of the new organization”). By Art. X. Bulgaria, so far as it was concerned, was to take the place of the Sublime Porte in the engagements which the latter had contracted, as well towards Austria-Hungary as towards the Rustchuck-Varna Railway Company, for working the railway of European Turkey in respect to the completion and connexion, as well as the working of the railways situated in its territory.
By Art. XIII. a province was formed south of the Balkans which was to take the name of “Eastern Rumelia,” and was to remain “under the direct military and political control of H.I.M. the Sultan, under conditions of administrative autonomy.” It was to have a Christian governor-general. Arts. XIV. to XXIII. define the frontiers and organization of the new province, questions arising out of the Russian occupation, and the rights of the sultan. Of the latter it is to be noted that the sultan retained the right of fortifying and occupying the Balkan passes (Art. XV.) and all his rights and obligations over the railways (Art. XXI.).
Art. XXV., which the events of 1908 afterwards brought into special prominence, runs as follows: “The provinces of Bosnia and Herzegovina shall be occupied and administered by Austria-Hungary. The government of Austria-Hungary, not desiring to undertake the administration of the sanjak of Novi-Bazar, ... the Ottoman administration will continue to exercise its functions there. Nevertheless, in order to assure the maintenance of the new political state of affairs, as well as freedom and security of communications, Austria-Hungary reserves the right of keeping garrisons and having military and commercial roads in the whole of this part of the ancient vilayet of Bosnia.”
By Art. XXVI. the independence of Montenegro was definitively recognized, and by Art. XVIII. she received certain accessions of territory, including a strip of coast on the Adriatic, but under conditions which tended to place her under the tutelage of Austria-Hungary. Thus, by Art. XXIX. she was to have neither ships of war nor a war flag, the port of Antivari and all Montenegrin waters were to be closed to the war-ships of all nations; the fortifications between the lake and the coast were to be razed; the administration of the maritime and sanitary police at Antivari and along the Montenegrin littoral was to be carried on by Austria-Hungary “by means of light coast-guard boats”; Montenegro was to adopt the maritime code in force in Dalmatia, while the Montenegrin merchant flag was to be under Austro-Hungarian consular protection. Finally, Montenegro was to “come to an understanding with Austria-Hungary on the right to construct and keep up across the new Montenegrin territory a road and a railway.”
By Art. XXXIV. the independence of Servia was recognized, subject to conditions (as to religious liberty, &c.) set forth in Art. XXXV. Art. XXXVI. defined the new boundaries.
By Art. XLIII. the independence of Rumania, already proclaimed by the prince (May 22/June 3 1877), was recognized. Subsequent articles define the conditions and the boundaries.
Arts. LII. to LVII. deal with the question of the free navigation of the Danube. All fortifications between the mouths and the Iron Gates were to be razed, and no vessels of war, save those of light tonnage in the service of the river police and the customs, were to navigate the river below the Iron Gates (Art. LII.). The Danube commission, on which Rumania was to be represented, was maintained in its functions (Art. LIII.) and provision made for the further prolongation of its powers (Art. LIV.).
Art. LVIII. cedes to Russia the territories of Ardahan, Kars and Batoum, in Asiatic Turkey. By Art. LIX. “H.M. the emperor of Russia declares that it is his intention to constitute Batoum a free port, essentially commercial.”
By Art. LXI. “the Sublime Porte undertakes to carry out, without further delay, the improvements and reforms demanded by local requirements in the provinces inhabited by the Armenians, and to guarantee their security against the Circassians and Kurds.” It was to keep the powers informed periodically of “the steps taken to this effect.”
Art. LXII. made provision for the securing religious liberty in the Ottoman dominions.
Finally, Art. LXIII. declares that “the treaty of Paris of 30th March 1856, as well as the treaty of London of 13th March 1871, are maintained in all such of their provisions as are not abrogated or modified by the preceding stipulations.”
For the full text of the treaty in the English translation see E. Hertslet, Map of Europe by Treaty, vol. iv. p. 2759 (No. 530); for the French original see State Papers, vol. lxix. p. 749. (W. A. P.)