Tengen, a jewel of the Middle Ages
The blossoming of small states in the Middle Ages took especially place in the South German area. In Tengen there are even two historic municipalities next to each other. Here, these living witnesses of history are still left up to the present. Tengen - one name, three parts! Today the Town Tengen, the Town Tengen-Hinterburg and the municipality of Tengen-Dorf are the centre of the once independent municipalities of Beuren am Ried, Büßlingen, Talheim, Uttenhofen, Watterdingen, Weil and Wiechs am Randen as well as of the town Blumenfeld. die Stadt Blumenfeld.
Even today you can distinctly feel the Middle Ages in the ground of the Town Tengen, Tengen-Hinterburg and in the Town Blumenfeld. Town gates, keep, castle, the municipality on the rocks, ravines and waterfalls form this landscape of the Hegau-Alb.
The Town Tengen
The street leading by an arched bridge narrows in front of the gate so that there is only room left for one vehicle to come through. The town gate, in which the town-hall as well as the school of this town were located, is one of the landmarks. Behind the gate a wide place extends; the only street of the municipality is also situated here. A single building juts out from the row of houses; - this was the senior bailiff's residence of the territory Tengen in the past.
For centuries these grounds have been used for holding any fair. The most famous one is the so called 'Schätzele- Markt' (since 1291) which takes place annually at the last weekend in October.
You leave the grounds by another arched bridge and reach the castle - Tengen castle. There is only the keep with a height of 32 metres left of it. Another jewel follows, the chapel of the castle, called St Georg. Stones on the side of the path near the chapel indicate the presumable course of the town wall between Tengen and Tengen-Hinterburg.
The Town Tengen-Hinterburg
There was also a town gate, though the one of the Town Tengen-Hinterburg. In 1275 this part of the castle and of the housing estate was alienated to Albrecht of Klingenberg. A town wall was built between the two grounds. The market rights were given to this "Residence at the back" in 1291 by King Rudolf I.; the town charter (freedom of Diesenhofen/Switzerland) was confirmed.
The Town Tengen-Hinterburg had only one entrance for carts leading by foreign sovereign territory of the lords of Tengen (later on Auersperg-Front-Austria). The independence of Tengen-Hinterburg as a town remained until 1876. At that time the housing estate numbered all of 45 inhabitants!
When you walk on through this "town" the way leads through the former town gate and goes down to the Mühlbachschlucht . The so called "Eselsweg" was the only free entrance to the Town Tengen-Hinterburg and could only be managed by pack-asses.
There is a ruin of a mill with a running mill-wheel. A part of the place inside the ruin is covered; a grill is available. An indescribable natural spectacle is the "Alte Bach" - today: the Mühlbachschlucht. The highest distance the brook falls is 13 metres. The circular route with bridges and footbridges goes past the waterfalls and leads back to the municipality of Tengen.
It is worth going for a further walk through the different streets of Tengen-Dorf.. On the altarpiece (from ca. 1750) in the chapel of the cemetery you will find a view of the municipality. The painting showing Christ with 12 sleeping apostles and angels on the Mount of Olives (presumably by Christoph Daniel Schenk, around 1650) on the outside of the tower of the St Laurentius church is also worth seeing.
A natural spectacle is the waterfall of the Biber in Blumenfeld. The medieval municipality of Blumenfeld with the Teutonic castle and the Roman Estate near Büßlingen are signs that the volcano landscape of Hegau had been settled centuries ago.
Not without reason an old Baden proverb says: "Engen, Tengen, Blumenfeld are the most beautiful towns in the world." A well run gastronomy in Tengen and its parts makes this also sure and invites to have some refreshment or to stay overnight.