The Wendland is a landscape in the border area of ​​the modern states of Brandenburg, Mecklenburg -Western Pomerania, Lower Saxony and Saxony- Anhalt. Its core is the Hanoverian Wendland in the Lüchow -Dannenberg in Lower Saxony.

In 2012, the state of Lower Saxony nominated the round villages in the Hanoverian Wendland for the German Tentative List for future UNESCO World Heritage applications. Further decisions about the success of the application fall 2013 by the Standing Conference and the earliest from 2017 by UNESCO.


Wendland is no ancestral area designation. The term only came to around 1700, when a priest from Wustrow about the language, habits, customs and manners of the inhabitants of this land polabischen reported. He looked at the people in the Danne Bergische offices as turning and named after the area as Wendland. Over time, the name became common one.


Geographically represents the western Wendland represents the eastern edge of the Lüneburg Heath, which received its character during the Saale glaciation. Landscape determining factor there is the mountain range of Drawehn, which is also referred to as Osthannoversche gravel terminal moraine. It is a sandy moraine, which was reforested with pines. With infertile soils and water scarcity as a result of water-permeable soil, it has always been unfriendly settlement in its history. Most of the Hanoverian Wendland, however, lies in the glacial valley of the Elbe. A distinction is made between the actual Elbe Valley in the north and the Lüchower lowlands. The latter is a low terrace, shaded by numerous rivers and streams - is crossed, canals and ditches - the largest the Jeetzel. Hills are formed of small, island-like moraines as Öring, Lemgow, Long Island villages Geest and Höhbeck. To the east is on a large shifting sand level Gartower forestry (see also Wendland and Altmark).

Culture and history

Significantly influenced the Wendland of the polabischen culture. In the Middle Ages, remnants into the early modern period, the Wendland of Slavs was inhabited, which were referred to the German-speaking as turning. Have been preserved including many place names of Slavic origin, originated in medieval conflict situations, the form of settlement of the round villages. The Slavic language of Wendland, the Drawänopolabische is extinct since 1756. Until then, the Wendland was the westernmost point of the Slavic language area.

Until the turn of 1989/90 the Wendland, the baggy into extended to the territory of the GDR, Zonenrandgebiet was. Since the late 1970s it has become nationally known by the protests against the nuclear waste storage facility and because of the " proclamation " of the Free Republic of Wendland in 1980.

Since 1989 is the Wendland annually between Ascension and Pentecost, the Cultural outing as one of the largest cultural events in Germany.

For the religious history of the region to be read with the church district Lüchow -Dannenberg a contribution.

Settlement forms

In Hanoverian Wendland of the village settlement type of the winder is widely used and maintained. Almost all Rundlinge still bear place names of Slavic origin. This form of settlement of the winder has a presence in a strip of the Baltic to the Erzgebirge, but could get only in the Wendland region since the Middle Ages as a structurally weak region away from the major trade routes in heaping expression.

With more than 100 villages Rundling form can be seen in the townscape today. But also in the neighboring Altmark and in the eastern parts of the districts of Lüneburg, Uelzen, Gifhorn and south on the Vorsfelder Werder ( Rühen, Wendschott, Brackstedt, Velstove ) and some areas of Schleswig-Holstein there are significant numbers of round Lingen received. These are in contrast to those of the Hanoverian Wendland overmolded often stronger. Their original farmhouses have survived less since arisen in other areas with higher economic dynamism new buildings.

Application for Tentative List as a World Heritage Site

The round villages in the Hanoverian Wendland have been nominated as a cultural landscape for the German Tentative List for future UNESCO World Heritage applications in 2012 by the state of Lower Saxony. On June 18, 2012, the Lower Saxony Ministry for Science and Culture announced his decision after a selection process started in 2011. The Standing Conference 2013 will decide which applications of the states are set to the German Tentative List of UNESCO selects the earliest from 2017 new World Heritage Sites.

The candidacy of 20 selected round villages was justified by the fact that they represent a selection of distinctive high medieval colonization settlements in the Lüchow -Dannenberg. The uniqueness of the round villages express itself through the interplay of a distinctive local floor plan, a large density of gable constantly focused on the central square of Low German hall houses as well as a region-specific expression of this house type. Chances of success in the candidacy hopes the state of Lower Saxony in that the round villages belong to the under-represented categories of cultural landscapes and the rural architecture within the world heritage.