The Hahnen City Gate is therefore, along with the Eigelstein City Gate in the north and the Severins City Gate in the south, one of the remnants of a building that symbolises the freedom of the city of Cologne and its citizens. One of the central conflicts of the Middle Ages for Cologne was the conflict between the aspiring urban burghers and their sovereigns, the archbishops of Cologne. In the course of the conflict, the city's citizens took over the city's defence from the archbishop, which led to the construction of the city wall. This was a milestone on the way to becoming a free imperial city.
The city wall was built from 1180 onwards and was subsequently constantly adapted to the changing conditions of war. The Hahnen City Gate was built at the beginning of the 12th century and controlled the western entrance via Aachener Straße. After the kings of the Middle Ages were crowned in Aachen, they entered Cologne through the Hahnen City Gate to pay homage to them at the shrine of the Three Wise Men.
The Hahnen City Gate thus forms part of Cologne's inner-city border. It continues to be heavily frequented today, even though traffic tends to pass by the City Gate rather than through it. As a connecting element between the city centre with the adjoining student quarter (Kwartier Latäng) and the Belgian Quarter, the Hahnen City Gate and Rudolfplatz are at the heart of urban life. The carnival club of the EhrenGarde der Stadt Köln 1902 e.V. is lucky to call such a central and traditional building its home.
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