The Marketplace is known as the “living room” of Tübingen, in part because the tall homes enclosing the square – most of which were built in the 15th and 16th century – give it a cozy atmosphere. On balmy summer nights, the marketplace, particularly the area around the fountain, is a favorite meeting place for young people.
Three times a week (Mon, Wed, Fri), Tübingen invites shoppers to its market (der Wochenmarkt), where one can choose from a wide variety of produce, meats, cheeses, and homemade products from the area.
The Marketplace was first mentioned by merchants in 1191 and in writing in 1302. The Renaissance fountain, featuring Neptune with his trident, was created in 1617 by Georg Müller. His work is based on the Bolognese-styled design by Heinrich Schickhardt. Over the centuries, the stone fountain became fragile and began to crumble. The renewal of the fountain in bronze constituted the first public construction project in Tübingen after the Second World War. The female figures at Neptune’s feet represent the four seasons. In the metal work around the pipes, you can see silhouettes of heads. These are the heads of the citizens of Tübingen who were instrumental in the renovation of the fountain.
In the house at Kronenstraße 11, where a cafe and restaurant now stand, lived the poet and democrat Hermann Kurz (1813–73). His daughter, the author Isolde Kurz (1853–1944), grew up here.