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Schwerin Palace - Parliament of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern
Flag of Schwerin
Coat of arms of Schwerin
Coat of arms
Schwerin   is located in Germany
Coordinates: 53°38′0″N 11°25′0″E / 53.63333°N 11.41667°E / 53.63333; 11.41667Coordinates: 53°38′0″N 11°25′0″E / 53.63333°N 11.41667°E / 53.63333; 11.41667
Country Germany
State Mecklenburg-Vorpommern
District Urban district
 • Lord Mayor Rico Badenschier (SPD)
 • Total 130.46 km2 (50.37 sq mi)
Elevation 38 m (125 ft)
Population (2016-12-31)[1]
 • Total 95,668
 • Density 730/km2 (1,900/sq mi)
Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)
Postal codes 19053, 19055, 19057, 19059, 19061, 19063
Dialling codes 0385
Vehicle registration SN
County of Schwerin
Grafschaft Schwerin
Coat of arms
Coat of arms
County of Schwerin during the time of the Hohenstaufen Emperors (circa 1250)
Capital Schwerin
Government County
Historical era Middle Ages
 •  Established 1161
 •  Partitioned to Schwerin
    and Sch-Wittenburg
 •  Partitioned to create
 •  Inherited Tecklenburg 1328
 •  Sch-Schwerin comital line
 •  Sch-W'burg-B'burg extinct 1349 1358
 •  Comital line extinct; sold
    to Mecklenburg-Schwerin
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Duchy of Saxony Duchy of Saxony
Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
Bishopric of Schwerin
Bistum Schwerin
Bishopric of Schwerin during the time of the Hohenstaufen Emperors (circa 1250)
Capital Schwerin
Government Prince-Bishopric
Historical era Middle Ages
 •  Established 1062
 •  Gained territory 1165
 •  Secularised to M-Schwerin 1648
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Duchy of Saxony Duchy of Saxony
Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin

Schwerin ([ʃvɛˈʁiːn] or [ʃvəˈʁiːn], Mecklenburgian Swerin, Latin Suerina) is the capital and second-largest city of the northern German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. The population is 98,000 as of July 2016.[2]

Schwerin was first mentioned in 1018 as Wendenburg and was granted city rights in 1160 by Henry the Lion, thus it is the oldest city of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. It is globally known for its romantic Schwerin Palace, situated on an island in the Lake Schwerin. The palace was one of the main residences of the dukes and grand dukes of Mecklenburg until 1918 and is the official seat of the state parliament since 1990. The city also has a largely intact old town, thanks to only minor damage in World War II.

Schwerin is located within the metropolitan region of Hamburg and close to that of Berlin, and to nearby regiopolises of Rostock and Lübeck. Major industries and employers include high tech, machine building, healthcare, government agencies, railway supply, consumer goods and tourism. Schwerin has three academic colleges, the FHM, HdBA and the Design School.


Schwerin is enclosed by lakes. The largest of these lakes, the Schweriner See, has an area of 60 km2. In the middle part of these lakes there was a settlement of the Slavic Obotrite (dated back to the 11th century). The area was called Zuarin (Polabian Zwierzyn), and the name Schwerin is derived from that designation. In 1160, Henry the Lion defeated the Obotrites and captured Schwerin. The town was later expanded into a powerful regional centre. A castle was built on this site, and expanded to become a ducal palace. It is supposedly haunted by the small, impious ghost, called Petermännchen ("Peterman").

In 1358, Schwerin became a part of the Duchy of Mecklenburg, making it the seat of the duchy from then on. About 1500, the construction of the Schwerin Palace began, as a residence for the dukes. After the division of Mecklenburg (1621), Schwerin became the capital of the Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin. Between 1765 and 1837, the town of Ludwigslust served as the capital, until Schwerin was reinstated.

In the mid-1800s, many residents from Schwerin moved to the United States, many to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Today Milwaukee and Schwerin are sister cities.

After 1918, and during the German Revolution, resulting in the fall of all the German monarchies, the Grand Duke abdicated. Schwerin became capital of the Free State of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern thereafter.

At the end of World War II, on 2 May 1945, Schwerin was taken by U.S. troops. It was turned over to the British on 1 June 1945, and one month later, on 1 July 1945,[3] it was handed over to the Soviet forces, as the British and American forces pulled back from the line of contact to the predesignated occupation zones. Schwerin was then in the Soviet Occupation Zone which was to become the German Democratic Republic (GDR). Initially, it was the capital of the State of Mecklenburg which at that time included the western part of Pomerania (Vorpommern). After the states were dissolved in the GDR, in 1952, Schwerin served as the capital of the Schwerin district (Bezirk Schwerin).

After reunification in 1990, the former state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern was recreated as one of the Bundesländer. Rostock was a serious contender for state capital but the decision went in favour of Schwerin.

City Outline[edit]

The urban area of Schwerin is divided into 18 local districts,[4] each with a local council. The districts consist of one or more districts. The local councilors have between 5 and 15 members depending on the number of inhabitants. They are determined by the city council for the duration of the election period of the city council after each municipal election. The local councilors are to hear important matters concerning the district and have a right of initiative. However, the final decisions are made by the city council of the city as a whole.

The 18 present districts with their respective districts are:

District 1: Schelfstadt, Werdervorstadt, Schelfwerder

District 2: Altstadt (Old Town), Feldstadt, Paulsstadt, Lewenberg

District 3: Grosser Dreesch (former Dreesch I)

District 4: Neu Zippendorf (former Dreesch II)

District 5: Mueßer Holz (former Dreesch III)

District 6: Gartenstadt, Ostorf (formerly Haselholz, Ostorf)

District 7: Lankow

District 8: Weststadt

District 9: Krebsförden

District 10: Wüstmark, Göhrener Tannen

District 11: Görries

District 12: Friedrichsthal

District 13: Neumühle, Sacktannen

District 14: Warnitz

District 15: Wickendorf

Locality 16: Medewege

Locality 17: Zippendorf

Locality 18: Mueß

Sister cities[edit]


City buses and trams are run by NVS (Nahverkehr Schwerin).[5]

Schwerin Hauptbahnhof (central station) is connected by rail to Berlin, Hamburg and Rostock.

Main sights[edit]

  • The landmark of the city is the Schwerin Palace, located on an island in the lake of the same name (Schweriner See). It was, for centuries, the residence of the Dukes of Mecklenburg and today is the seat of the Landtag (state parliament).
  • Schwerin Cathedral, built in 1260–1416 in Brick Gothic style.
  • The Alter Garten (Old Garden) square, surrounded by buildings such as the 18th-century Altes Palais (Old Palace), the neoclassical Staatliches Museum Schwerin (State Art Museum), built in 1877–1882, and the Staatstheater (City Theater), erected in 1886.
  • The town hall (18th century)
  • Schelfkirche (Saint Nicolai, originally built 1238, but rebuilt in 1713 after destruction by a storm)
  • TV Tower Schwerin-Zippendorf


  • The Staatliches Museum Schwerin-Kunstsammlungen (State Art Museum) houses a remarkable collection of 17th-century Dutch paintings and German art from medieval and renaissance masters up to the present day. There are also a collection of Greek vases, the notable collection of Paintings of Jean-Baptiste Oudry, a collection of sculptures of Houdon, German 18th-century court paintings, and works by such modern artists as Max Liebermann, Franz Stuck, Marcel Duchamp etc. The Graphic cabinet houses rich collections of Dutch and German drawings and prints (Jan van Goyen, Dürer, Cranach, Rembrandt, Merian etc.) and a notable collection of coloured graphics from the time of the GDR.
  • The State Museum of Technology (Technische Museum), housed in the former Marstall (Royal Stables). In 2012 the Technische Museum moved to the city of Wismar located 40 km north of Schwerin.

Sons and daughters of the town[edit]

Friedrich Ludwig Schröder
Franziska Ellmenreich in 1881

18th century[edit]

19th century[edit]

Bernhard Schwentner

20th century[edit]


1951 - 2000[edit]

Katrin Sass


Panoramic view of Schwerin's historic city center.


  1. ^ "Bevölkerungsstand der Kreise, Ämter und Gemeinden in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern 31.12.2016". Statistisches Amt Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (in German). January 2018. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ Some evidence[citation needed] calls into doubt the date on which the British withdrew to the predesignated occupation zone. Local residents claim that the British forces did not relinquish control of Schwerin until later in the year, probably November, following a brief artillery exchange across lake Schwerin between the British and the Soviets. Allegedly there were no deaths.
  4. ^ "". (in German). Retrieved 2017-07-26.  External link in |title= (help)
  5. ^ NVS (Nahverkehr Schwerin)

External links[edit]