Trader's Gate

  ul. Straganiarska 37, Gdańsk ,   Old Town         12 Jul 2022
Built between 1481 and 1492 this brick beauty whose names translates as Trader's or Costermonger's Gate in English, comes crowned with two turrets, and was obviously inspired by the gates to Mariacka and Chlebnicka. The unique feature here is a heraldic coat of arms sat over the entrance bearing the emblems of Gdańsk, Prussia and Poland (taking centre bow), proof if any were required to the peaceful coexistence these rival communities enjoyed for such long spells. Smashed considerably at the tail end of the war this Gothic gate was nearly completely rebuilt in the years after. Interestingly and in keeping with the reconstruction policy of post-war Gdańsk, the gate was not rebuilt to look like it did in 1939 Danzig but instead a historic painting was used so that the gatehouse resembled the way it looked the last time the city had been Gdańsk back in the 18th-century. It has been used for residential housing since then. Attesting to this is a plaque confirming the presence of one of its more famous residents, Zbyszek Cybulski. ‘Who he’ you ask, and quite rightly so. Unknown in the west Cybulski was basically Poland’s answer to James Dean, a non-conformist rebel known for his intense style, black coat and too-cool-for-school specs. ‘Look, there goes another idiot pretending to be Cybulski’, a train conductor was once heard remarking as this icon walked past. Already famous when he lived here between 1959 and 1963, Cybulski shot Do widzenia, Do jutra close by, as well as performing in the Wybrzeże Theatre down the road. His premature death in 1967 cemented his status as a domestic legend, and it’s not rare to find flowers and candles beneath the signage that honours him. If you like the idea of sleeping in one of the apartments inside, check out Gdańsk Apartments who rent one on the first floor overlooking the water.


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