Ever since the Saxon settlers arrived in the early 12th century, invading Mongols, Turks and others gave them a tough time, repeatedly destroying the old settlements of Bartholomew and Corona. When they had quite enough of it all, the Saxons set themselves to build fortifications around their town, first consisting of earthen walls and wooden barriers, later reinforced with stones. Most work was done between 1400 and 1650, when outer and inner walls were erected, together with massive defense towers and gates. The Bastions were built through the effort of the main craftsmen corporations, blacksmiths, weavers, goldsmiths, armoires and drummers and they hosted some of the trade centers of the medieval city.
The Blacksmiths’ Bastion – The Archive (Bastionul fierarilor)
34, Baritiu St, Brasov The Blacksmiths’ Bastion, located on the Northwest side of Brasov citadel, was first attested in 1529. It was pentagon shaped initially. Later that was altered. At the beginning of the 20th century it was turned into The Archive. Nowadays, The Archive hosts more than 100,000 of old and rare documents among them 80 letters belonging to rulers Neagoe Basarab, Serban Cantacuzino, Mircea cel Batran and Nicolae Mavrocordat (14th-16Ith century), the oldest letter ever written in Romanian language (The letter of Neacsu, the merchant from Campulung -1521) and documents attesting the existence of Slatina and Braila districts.
The Weavers’ Bastion (Bastionul tesatorilor)
9, George Cosbuc St, Brasov
The Weavers’ Bastion is today a museum that can be visited on the way up on Tampa Mountain. It is the largest Medieval bastion in Brasov and the best preserved among the seven initial watchtowers built around the city walls. It was first built during 1421-1436 and rebuilt in 1570-1573. Inside the construction there are three main protective corridors. The wooden galleries, unfortunately off limits for visitors, surround a small central square.
The small museum (with only a few English captions) shows photographs of long-gone bastions, impressive weapons decorated with Arabic inscriptions once used by the Turks to bash Saxons, and some huge guns. Best of all is the large model of Brasov in 1600, painstakingly made by architect Friedrich Herman in 1896 for the Millennium Exhibition in Budapest.
The Ropemakers’ Bastion (Bastionul franghierilor)
Tiberiu Breticeanu Alley, Brasov
The Ropemakers’ Bastion (1416) is one of the oldest towers ever built. It had the form of a hexagon and 10-12 m high. After the fires in 1461 and 1689, the tower was almost destroyed. Now it’s being rebuilt.
The Drapers’ Bastion (Bastionul postavarilor)
The Drapers’ Bastion was built during 1450-1455 as a protective bastion. Located on the East side of the old citadel, the bastion had three floors. The tower was 12,7 m high while the walls breadth was 2 m. Initially the tower belonged to the Guild of goldsmiths and was transferred to drapers only in the year 1640.
The Graft Bastion (Bastionul Graft)
Located in the middle of the north-west wing of the Brasov Fortress, the Graft Bastion was erected in 1521. A rectangular structure, the bastion has four levels, accessible through interior staircases. Levels two, three and four host medieval objects displays, while level one serves as rest area for visitors. Newly restored.
The Furriers and the Gun Powder Bastions
Tiberiu Breticeanu Alley, Brasov Both were newly restored to their initial shape.
Behind the walls (Dupa ziduri)
Taking a walk behind The Blacksmith’s Bastion one can reach The Graft Brook, right where is the place called “Dupa Ziduri”. The walls of Brasov’s fortress have been preserved very well here and you can still see them.