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Balthasar Neumann Edit Profile

architect , engineer

Johann Balthasar Neumann was a German military artillery engineer and architect who developed a refined brand of Baroque architecture. His Würzburg Residence is considered one of the most beautiful and well proportioned palaces in Europe and the Basilica of the Fourteen Holy Helpers is considered by some as the crowning work of the period.


Neumann was born in house No. 12 on Schiffgasse street, Eger, Kingdom of Bohemia, now known as Cheb, Czech Republic, the seventh of nine children of cloth-maker Hans Christoph Neumann. He was baptized on January 30, 1687.


Balthasae Neumann spent his first apprenticeship working at the foundry of his godfather Balthasar Platzer but he changed at the beginning of the 18th Century to Sebald Koch in Würzburg where, in 1711, he received his Apprenticeship certificate.


It was not only for innovative staircase designs that Neumann was engaged over the years that followed. He also found ample opportunities to prove himself in church architecture. He created a number of churches that clearly illustrate that there were no limits to his wealth of invention In Vierzehnheiligen, a Bavarian pilgrimage church, for example, he created a ground plan composed of ovals of various sizes. The facade of the building, flanked by two towers, projects in the central area, and in the interior too Neumann stressed its three-dimensionality, so that the church appears almost to move - a feast for the eyes for both religious and architectural pilgrims.