Berlin Photo Gallery

The Reichstag is the seat of the German Bundestag or federal government and, with its new dome, one of the Berlin's biggest crowd-draws in Berlin. Its colorful past reflects the turbulence of German history since the 19th century.

The Reichstag was constructed from 188494 by Paul Wallot, since a representative building was needed to house the parliament of the newly-founded German state. The inscription "Dem Deutschen Volke" ("To the German people") was only added in 1916 during the First World War. Part of the Reichstag was destroyed in a fire on 27 February 1933 and the fire was used by the Nazis to justify their persecution of political opponents.

After the war, the devastated building was rebuilt in a simplified form from 196171 to plans by Paul Baumgarten, but it was not used for parliamentary functions. The dome, which had been blown up in 1945, was not rebuilt.

After reunification, the German Federal Government decided to use the building as a parliament once again. From 199499 the Reichstag was reconstructed and extended by Sir Norman Forster, who added an accessible dome. Since 1999 the Reichstag building has once again been the seat of the German Bundestag.

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