mint building

86956 Schongau, Münstraße 35 (703 m über NN)

The so-called old mint building is located at the end of the main traffic axis of Schongau‘s old town on Münzstrasse. It is part of the city wall and its core goes back to the mint master‘s gate leading to the north.

Audio commentary on station 8, mint building

Excerpt from the audio commentary by Oliver Pötzsch:

The name of this historic building is deceptive. Coins were probably never minted in the so-called Schongau mint building, at most the mint master lived here nearby. The actual function of the building is a much more gruesome one: this is where the Fronveste once stood, i.e. the city prison and also the place of torture. If you will, you are standing in front of my ancestors‘ study. Many scenes in my novels are therefore set here.

Although it is difficult to imagine today, torture was an important part of the judiciary well into the 18th century. There was no circumstantial trial - to convict a perpetrator you needed a confession. And if this didn‘t happen voluntarily, then you just helped. My ancestors were responsible for that. Showing the suspect the instruments of torture was often enough. If they did not voluntarily confess, the torture took place in several degrees of severity. Everything was neatly logged, as if the bureaucracy was trying to whitewash the blatant injustice.

There was a precise list of fees for torture and executions, according to which the Kuisls were also paid. Beating it off with a rod cost 47 kreuzers, beating off a hand already brought in 1 guilder, torquing, i.e. torturing a witch, 2 guilders 30 kreuzers. The pyre, which cost ten guilders, was particularly well paid for.

As a descendant of an executioner dynasty, it is important for me to emphasize that in most cases executioners were probably not sadists. You were doing the very job that God intended for you. Torture, and especially executions, seemed fair to most people. Nevertheless, killing was certainly not always easy for the executioners - above all because they knew that if the execution did not go according to plan, they would quickly become victims of lynch law themselves. In the volume "The Henker‘s Daughter and the Devil of Bamberg" such a scene is described in the prologue. It is based on a true event.

This is probably one of the reasons why a number of executioners were true quarterly buyers. A case has been handed down from Nördlingen in which the executioner saw seven heads instead of one on the place of execution. The execution was accordingly bloody. It is said that his wife then brought the matter to an end.


Barrier friendly

Parkplätze vorhanden

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