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Hopner House

  • Communicative Urban Space
  • Raekoja plats 18

Hopner House

The complex of three buildings located at Town Hall Square is arching towards Vanaturu Street, where it is possible to view the most authentically preserved monumental main facade dating back to 1420, with Gothic sharp gable and false windows. Other buildings were added later and reconstructed several times. In 17th century, the complex belonged to the merchant Johan Höppener, and a version of the name of the owner is written on the facade. The font used for that purpose is Tannenberg, designed by Erich Meyer (1933).

This is one of several modern Gothic scripts designed in Germany in 1930s, the form of which is monumental – almost as carved. Nazi regime supported creation and distribution of such fonts, and therefore experts have raised a question, if it is proper to use the font in Tallinn. However, an opinion prevails that no ideological ballast should be appended to the font. Moreover, the building complex received its current appearance in 1836, thus the use of stylized Gothics in the „Gothic” context of the Old Town is relevant.

Under the windows of the first floor of the buildings, a frieze with polychrome low reliefs dating back to 1596 is worth watching.