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Brassó in Hungarian, Brasov in Rumanian and Kronstadt in German is a city that was established at the southeastern border of the land called Barcaság (Rumanian: Țara Bârsei, German: Burzenland), where the Southern Carpathians and the Eastern Carpathians meet, at a height of some 550 m above the sea level.
It was king Endre II that invited the Teutonic Order to the Barcaság in 1211 and expelled them in 1225. But there stayed the German peasants that the knights brought to colonize the land. The recently established town survived the Mongol invasions and rapidly grabbed a predominant position in the rivalry with Feketehalom (Codlea) and Földvár (Feldioara). It became the administrative core of Barcaság and the centre of the Transylvaian Saxon autonomy and remained until 1876 when Brassó County was created and the town became capital of the new county.
Originally, the town was protected by a fortress built on the Cenk (Titnpa) mountain (961 m). But the fortress, lacking military importance, was demolished by János Hunyadi. Already in the 14th century the town became an important political and military centre. In 1344 king Louis I the Great met here the monarch of Walachia to prepare the military expedition against the Mongols in 1345 and it was also here where Sigismund signed the alliance with Mircea cel Bátrin, monarch of Walachia against the Ottomans in 1395.
In the independence war of 1848/49, the troops of general Bem took the city without a siege. They did not make harm to the people and the city had no damages at all. The downtown is easy to find, just follow the signs. The main square and the old buildings of the pedestrian street display a strong Saxon style. In any of the many restaurants of the pedestrian street you can taste the real Brasov roast. In 1420 started the construction of the town hall, originally in gothic style. It was enhanced between 1515 and 1528 and reconstructed in 1646 in baroque style. It took its current shape between 1770 and 1774. Since 1949 it works as a museum. You can reach the Black Church through a narrow street that opens on the east side of the square. The construction of the church started in 1383 and lasted almost hundred years. Imperial general Caraffa wanted to establish an Austrian guard in Brasov but the people resisted. As a revenge, Caraffa condemned to death the leaders of the insurrection and devastated the town. The fire that originated in the revolt destroyed whole streets. It was at that time that the walls of the church became black – for this reason it is called the Black Church since then. The Black Church is one of the most important gothic buildings of Romania and the most eastern notable work of European gothic architecture. Since the Reformation it has been an evangelic church.
Follow the traffic signs to drive to Brassó-Pojana (Poiana Brasov). It is an excursion spot or ski paradise – up to the season. Take an elevator to go up to the Christian alp at a height of 1705 metres. Better start this journey after 11 in the morning, when the mist is over, because like this you will have an opportunity to enjoy the view of Brasov. To return, take road 73 toward Pitesti. In some half an hour you would reach Törcsvár (Bran).