Introducing the Brandenburg Gate
For over 200 years, Brandenburg Gate has been an icon for a transforming German identity. Brandenburg Gate was commissioned by Prussian Emperor Frederick William II, to represent peace at the end of the 18th Century. When Napoleon invaded Berlin in 1806, he sacked the bronze quadriga and took it back to Paris. After Napoleon’s defeat, the quadriga was returned, with an added Iron Cross to commemorate the victory. The gate became a central symbol for the Nazi Party, only to become inaccessible for years to come after the demise of the Nazis and the division of Germany. It was walled off from both sides with concrete and barbed wire when Germany, and consequently, Berlin, was divided into two. However, with the fall of the German Democratic Republic, better known was East Germany, in 1989, the Brandenburg Gate has again become central in symbolizing a reunited country.