The Römer’s silhouette is world-famous and unmistakably belongs to Frankfurt. The city’s government has been located here since the 15th century, and it gave its name to the square. Since the 9th century, the Römerberg, formerly called the Samstagsberg, has been the site of markets and fairs, tournaments and festivals, executions and imperial elections and coronations. In the 16th century it was considered the most beautiful square in the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation. It is from this era that the fountain of justice in the middle of the square also originates. Adorned with a statue of Justice with unbound eyes, a scale and sword, this was the first fountain in Frankfurt. A few steps away from the fountain there is a plaque in the cobblestones that commemorates the book burning by the National Socialists in 1933.
The eastern row of the Römerberg is characterised by frame houses, which were built in 1986 according to historical plans. Their names recall their great and proud history: The “Great Angel”, where Frankfurt’s first bank was established in the 17th century, is followed by the “Golden Griffon”, and then the buildings “Wild Man”, “Small Badger Hill”, “Great and Small Lauberberg”. The last is the “Black Star”, right next to the Old Nikolai Church. It borders the Römerberg in the direction of the Main river. There, at the Fahrtor, is the Wertheim house, one of the few frame houses in the old town area to survive the air raid in 1944. The end of the Saal Lane (Saalgasse) is located across from the Historical Museum. Its post-modern row of houses contrasts with the historical architecture of the Römerberg.