History of Trier
In 2009, Trier celebrated its 2025th birthday and its uninterrupted tradition of urban living since 17 BC. The founding date is derived from the age of the wooden pilings of the first Moselle bridge found in the mud of the river. Through a comparison of the annual growth rings (dendrochronology), the date when the trees for the pilings were felled was determined to be 17 BC.
In its eventful history, Trier has served, among other purposes, as the seat of government for the Western Roman Empire; in the Middle Ages, it received the name “holy city”; it has survived many wars as a border city between Germany and France, and is today a university city in the heart of Europe.
The Treveri and the Romans – The City’s Founding
(5000 BC – AD 70)
Urbs opulentissima - Trier’s First Period of Glory
(AD 70 to 269)
Emperor and Christians –Residence of the Western Roman Empire
(269 to 485)
The Holy City – Trier in the Early and High Middle Ages
(485 to 1307)
Electors and Guilds – Was Trier a Free Imperial City?
(1307 to 1580)
The Heavy Burden of War –Trier in the Early Modern Era
(1580 to 1794)
Modernization, Revolution, and Growth - Trier in France and Prussia
(1794 to 1914)
From the Catholic Stronghold to the "Bulwark" of the Brown Shirts
(1914 to 1945)
Harbor City, University City, Large City - Trier in Europe
(1945 to the present)
All the great events in Trier over the last 2200 years, clearly arranged chronologically
From Emperor Constantine the Great to Karl Marx: Get acquainted with the most influential and well-known personalities from 2025 years of world history who were born in Trier or have had significant influence here.
Literature on Trier's history
Would you like to learn more about Trier's history? Our literature list can offer you a bit of assistance.
Current literature on Trier
You can find current literature and many other attractive Trier items in our online shop.