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Schloss Tegel

The Schloss Tegel (Tegel Palace) or Humboldt-Schloss is a privately owned and occupied home in Tegel, part of the Reinickendorf district of the German capital Berlin. Dates back to a manor house built in 1558 for the court secretary of Joachim II. In 1766, it came into the possession of the von Humboldt family. In fact, Wilhelm von Humboldt, the philosopher, linguist and founder of the Berliner Universität, and his brother, the natural scientist Alexander von Humboldt, spent their childhood here. After their mother Marie-Elisabeth von Humboldt’s death, Wilhelm took over the estate in 1797 and had the Schloss rebuilt in the classical style between 1820 and 1824 by the architect Karl Friedrich Schinkel.  It still belongs to the Heinz family, descendants of Wilhelm.

Schloss Tegel, 1852.

Schloss Tegel, 1931.

The park was originally designed between 1777 and 1789 by Gottlob Johann Christian Kunth, the Humboldts’ tutor. From 1802 it was further developed by Wilhelm to designs by Peter Joseph Lenné. The park was listed as a ‘Denkmalschutz’ (monument treasure) in 1983. The vestibule was designed as an old Roman atrium with a fountain at the center. The workrooms and salons soon contained the antique sculptures and casts that Wilhelm and Caroline von Humboldt had collected especially during their years in Rome. The rooms are well-preserved and reflect the mindset of the Humboldt family: indeed, they are an impressive example of the vibrant appropriation of antiquity in that era.

Today it also houses the private Humboldt-Museum, open to guided tours during the summer.