M: Gallia est omnis divisa in partes tres, quarum unam incolunt Belgae, aliam Aquitani, tertiam qui ipsorum lingua Celtae, nostra Galli appellantur.
F: The opening sentence of "The Gallic War" by Julius Caesar. The walls themselves have apparently retained an imprint of the Latin school that operated on this site after 1820.
M: But that secondary school wasn’t the first building in this location. It replaced Siegburg’s derelict town hall. That’s also imprinted on the walls, because beneath the school building, the cellars of the medieval town hall have been preserved. So they’re even older than the building that houses our museum. The spaces in front of you, to your left and to your right, are those medieval cellars.
F: The masonry you see here, and beneath the steel staircase, is from a pair of town houses that were remodelled to create the town hall in the 15th century.
M: If you look straight ahead, through the doorway, you’ll see part of the underground vault that’s actually completely untouched. It was only discovered in 1986, during the preliminary structural surveys carried out before the building was converted into a museum.
F: Dare to take a look inside!
M: When you visit the other vaults, you’ll notice that the people who created the museum did their utmost not to conceal the historical cellars behind display cases and information panels. Instead, the permanent exhibition attempts to give you an unfiltered impression of the atmosphere of that time.
Foto: © Dagmar Trüpschuch