The history of Kaliningrad-Königsberg is connected with the name of one of the most famous of narrators, Baron Karl Friedrich Hieronymus von Münchhausen. According to legend he stayed here on his way to St-Petersburg, and even today the traveller-storyteller is often remembered in the city. A few years ago a Club of Münchhausen‘s Grandchildren was even established, which continued his work inventing wonderful stories about the great liar and perpetuating his name.

In 2005 in the Central Park of Culture and Recreation there appeared the monument to the baron flying on the cannon ball. The subject of the monument was not chosen accidentally: according to the legend the baron tried to fly to the moon with a cannon shot from Königsberg, but only managed to fly up to St-Petersburg. This sculpture was donated to local residents by the inhabitants of the German town of Bodenwerder, the birthplace of a real baron von Munchausen. On one side of the monument there is an inscription “Kaliningrad”, on the other side – “Königsberg”. In this way the donators wanted to emphasize the history of the connection between both cities.

Baron Munchausen in Kaliningrad
Photo by aleshkak.com

There is one more mark of the baron, on the embankment of the river Pregel. In 2011 a high boot of the great liar’s times was taken out of water. «Münchhausen‘s Grandchildren» authoritatively declared: the high boot was lost by the baron when he was flying on the cannon ball. Near the lighthouse in the Fishing village there was set up a high boot of the legendary storyteller and his court sword immortalized in metal in honour of this finding. A few years later both items were removed to the Friedrichsburg Gates, from the cannons of which that very cannon ball had been shot. In such a way historical justice has been restored by the baron’s admirers.

There is one more certain piece of evidence of the baron’s visit to Königsberg – his debt for beer at the restaurant “Sunny Stone” which is located in the same building of the Amber museum opposite Vasilevsky Square. Münchhausen forgot to pay 3 talers for the foamy beverage there. Many years after this debt was paid by the Bürgermeister of Bodenwerder when he was in Kaliningrad. The coins have been displayed at the honourable place since then.

By the way, you can also join the club of the baron’s followers. It is enough to put his high boot on, take his court sword, and swear to tell only the truth as its owner did. And on returning from Kaliningrad you should tell an exciting story about your visit to the westernmost city of Russia.

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