It is especially significant that the Room of Silence is located in
the Brandenburg Gate, because this city gate, built by Langhans about 200 years ago,
was conceived as the Gate of Peace. On top of the gate Schadow’s Quadriga with the
Goddess of Victory enters the town. But underneath there is a Attic Relievo which shows
the Goddess of Victory leading the triumphal procession of Eirene, the Goddess of Peace.
Also the statue of Mars in the southern part of the gate is engaged to peace, for the God
of War sheaths his sword. During the course of history, however, the gate’s message
of peace receded into the background. In the wake of World War II – and even more
so as the Berlin Wall was built along it in 1961 – the Brandenburg Gate was the
symbol of a divided city and a divided world. When the Wall fell in 1989 the Brandenburg
Gate became a symbol for a peaceful future in Germany and in Europe. Its Room of Silence
picks up on the idea of the Gate of Peace in accordance with the original spirit of this
As a place of thoughtfulness, brother- and sisterhood it will –
we hope – confer honour and blessings to our city and to its symbol
as a representation of peace here and elsewhere in the world.