Bruchsal Palace is the only religious Baroque residence on the Upper Rhine. The palace was built beginning in 1720 by Prince Bishop Damian Hugo of Schönborn, who made it the center of his absolutistic reign. After the plans had been modified several times, the central staircase was built by Balthasar Neumann, who had taken over and filled the role of Chief Engineer since 1731. It is generally regarded as one of the most successful design solutions for a baroque staircase. In 1802 the residential palace came into the possession of the state of Baden. After 1832 the complex increasingly decayed. Destructed in 1945, the palace is considered to be one of the greatest reconstruction efforts of the post-war decades today.
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