Zunfthaus zum Rüden

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File:Zürich - Limmatquai - Zunfthaus zum Rüden - Wühre IMG 6260.jpg
Zunfthaus «zum Rüden» at Limmatquai decorated for Sechseläuten (April 2010)

The Zunfthaus zum Rüden (or for short: Rüden) at Limmatquai is the guildhall of the Gesellschaft zur Constaffel, or guild of nobles, one of the 14 traditional guilds of Zürich. It is one of the historically notable buildings in the Rathaus quarter in Zürich, Switzerland.


The building was originally a modest timber structure located to the right of the Limmat river. The former mistress of the city, the abbess of the Fraumünster abbey, used it as mint. By order of the city council, the ground floor was rebuilt in 1348 with stone walls and an open porch hall for use as the city hall. Above this was a drinking club used by the Constaffel, an association of nobles and wealthy merchants, which occasionally hosted meetings of the two hundred members of the Cantonal Council of Zürich.<ref name="zunft_constaffel">History of the Gesellschaft zur Constaffel</ref> The building was sold to the Constaffel in 1401.

The name "zum Rüden" derives from the wolf hound, which was adopted in the heraldry of the Constaffel as a symbol of aristocratic hunting rights. It is first mentioned in 1358 in the Fraumünster census. From 1401, the building was known as the "Trinkstube der Herren zum Rüden".<ref name="zunfthaus_geschichte">Website Haus zum Rüden</ref>

On the Murerplan of 1576, the building can be seen on the right shore of the Limmat river, south of the Zunfthaus zur Haue, on the so-called Reichsstrasse (imperial street). Its current form dates from the late 17th century, when it was fitted with an additional timber framing floor that protrudes on two sides over the lower stone walls, which are about one meter thick.

In 1868, the guildhall was sold by the "Adelige Gesellschaft" (noble society) to the city of Zürich, and in 1937 it was acquired again by the current "Gesellschaft zur Constaffel". At the request of the city government, a pedestrian walkway was built under the arches for harmony with the appearance of the surrounding buildings. Also, exterior renovations were made by the firm Gebr. Bräm and a redesign of the interior was undertaken by Andre Ammann, to preserve the ate Gothic style of the original building and remove subsequent modifications. Impressive features of the Trinkstube – the Gothic hall of the current eponymous restaurant – are the magnificent, eleven-meters-wide, curved wooden ceiling beams with carved heads, and the rich interior.





  • Markus Brühlmeier, Beat Frei: Das Zürcher Zunftwesen. NZZ Buchverlag, Zürich 2005. ISBN 3-03823-171-1

External links

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