For other uses, see Lorsch (disambiguation).

Town hall

Coat of arms

Coordinates: 49°39′14″N 8°34′3″E / 49.65389°N 8.56750°E / 49.65389; 8.56750Coordinates: 49°39′14″N 8°34′3″E / 49.65389°N 8.56750°E / 49.65389; 8.56750
Country Germany
State Hesse
Admin. region Darmstadt
District Bergstraße
  Mayor Christian Schönung (CDU)
  Total 25.24 km2 (9.75 sq mi)
Population (2015-12-31)[1]
  Total 13,515
  Density 540/km2 (1,400/sq mi)
Time zone CET/CEST (UTC+1/+2)
Postal codes 64653
Dialling codes 06251
Vehicle registration HP
Website www.lorsch.de

Lorsch is a town in the Bergstraße district in Hessen, Germany, 60 km south of Frankfurt. Lorsch is well known for the Lorsch Abbey, which has been named a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.



Lorsch lies about 5 km west of the Bergstraße in the Rhine rift just west of the Odenwald between Darmstadt to the north and Mannheim to the south. The town lies not far from the Weschnitz's lower reaches. To the town's southeast the Weschnitzinsel conservation area is located.

Neighbouring communities

Lorsch borders in the north on the community of Einhausen and the town of Bensheim, in the east on the town of Heppenheim, in the southeast on the community of Laudenbach and the town of Hemsbach (both in Rhein-Neckar-Kreis, Baden-Württemberg), in the south on the town of Lampertheim and in the west on the town of Bürstadt.


Carolingian gatehall

Lorsch Abbey (German: Kloster Lorsch) was founded in 764 by the Frankish Count Cancor and his mother Williswinda. The abbey was one of the greatest centres of Carolingian art. Several Carolingian kings of Germany were buried there. The monastery was settled by Benedictines from Gorze Abbey near Metz. In a document from 885, the abbey is mentioned as Lauressam, from which, over the course of time, came the town’s current name. In the Early and High Middle Ages, the abbey was a powerful Imperial monastery with holdings in the nearby Odenwald, on the Bergstraße and in Rhenish Hesse, and also in Alsace and Lorraine.

In the civil war resulting from the Investiture Controversy in the 11th century, the abbey sustained great losses in holdings to the nobility.

In the late 12th century, with the record of the old deeds, there was an attempt to reorganize the administration (Lorsch codex). Nevertheless, in 1232, Lorsch was awarded to the Archbishopric of Mainz and newly settled by Premonstratensians. Thereafter, Mainz and the Electorate of the Palatinate found themselves at odds over who should hold the vogt rights. Of the Carolingian Benedictine abbey, which in parts has been unearthed, the gatehall (from about 800) has been preserved. It is today a UNESCO-protected World Heritage Site.

In 1991, the town hosted the 31st Hessentag state festival.


The firm TrekStor GmbH & Co.KG was founded in 2001 in Lorsch and has its head office here.


Community council

The municipal election held on 26 March 2006 yielded the following results:

Parties and voter communities %
CDU Christian Democratic Union of Germany 44.4 16 43.1 16
SPD Social Democratic Party of Germany 23.8 9 31.1 11
GREENS Bündnis 90/Die Grünen 12.4 5 9.6 4
FDP Free Democratic Party 4.7 2 1.6 1
PWL Parteilose Wählerschaft Lorsch 14.7 5 14.7 5
Total 100.0 37 100.0 37
Voter turnout in % 44.6 50.9

The town executive (Magistrat) is made up of seven councillors. Three seats are allotted to the CDU, two to the SPD and one each to the PWL and the Greens.


From 1993 to 2011, the mayor was Klaus Jäger (independent). He was re-elected on 7 February 1999 with 85.2% of the vote, and again on 13 February 2005 with 70.6%. Since 2011 the mayor has been Christian Schönung (PWL).

Coat of arms

Lorsch’s arms might be described thus: Party per fess, above sable the King’s Hall Or, below party per pale, argent a cross pattée fitchy gules and azure the Lion of Hesse springing.

The King’s Hall (Königshalle), the building declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991, is borne as a charge in the town’s arms. The red cross pattée fitchy (that is, cross with “flattened” ends to three of the arms, and a point on the bottom one) is the coat of arms formerly borne by the Lorsch Abbey in its heyday. The Lion of Hesse, shown here springing (with both hindfeet on the ground) rather than rampant (with only one hindfoot on the ground), comes from Hesse’s coat of arms (in which he is rampant) and symbolizes Lorsch’s status as part of Hesse.

Town twinning

There is also a friendship arrangement with:

This came about through the sponsorship arrangement for those ethnic Germans driven out of the communities of Jívová (formerly Giebau), Pohorsch, Weska and Hraničné Petrovice (Petersdorf bei Giebau), who then settled in Lorsch.

Arts and culture


Codex Aureus


Regular events

In Lorsch on Thursday during Carnival – locally known as Fastnacht – there is a Carnival parade with more than 100 attractions.

Historic buildings

Wattenheimer Brücke



Lorsch railway station in May 2007 (trackside)
Lorsch railway station in May 2007 (street)

Through the town’s municipal area run Autobahn A 67 and Bundesstraßen 47 and 460.

Lorsch’s DB railway station lies on the Nibelungenbahn (railway) between Bensheim and Worms. Furthermore, there are bus connections with Lampertheim/Bürstadt, Heppenheim, Einhausen and Bensheim.

Lorsch lies on Hesse’s cycle path R9, which leads from Worms by way of Bensheim to Höchst im Odenwald.

Public institutions


Lorsch has two regional daily newspapers, the Bergsträßer Anzeiger with its regional Lorsch/Einhausen edition, and the smaller circulation Starkenburger Echo.


Notable people

Honorary citizens

Sons and daughters of the town


Further reading

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Lorsch.
Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Lorsch.
This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 11/13/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.