Medieval Crime Museum (Mittelalterliches Kriminalmuseum), Rothenburg

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If you're curious about ancient punishment and torture, you'll want to stop by Medieval Crime Museum (Mittelalterliches Kriminalmuseum). Four floors with more than 130 displays reveal the history of European law and punishment, starting with the medieval period. Be aware that the exhibits explaining the penalties that were meted out during this time might make you squeamish. The sections that focus on the development of German law are especially interesting. A guided tour will help you go even more in-depth. Many aspects of the museum may not be suitable for children--or the faint of heart. Our Rothenburg trip planning site makes visiting Medieval Crime Museum (Mittelalterliches Kriminalmuseum) and other Rothenburg attractions simple, and helps you make a travel plan personal to you.
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Medieval Crime Museum (Mittelalterliches Kriminalmuseum) reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
1,361 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • Great place to see ..my favorite out of all of Rothenburg .Staff is amazing and everything is understandable in English .Its a nice distraction from the hundreds of Christmas shops 
    Great place to see ..my favorite out of all of Rothenburg .Staff is amazing and everything is understandable in English .Its a nice distraction from the hundreds of Christmas shops  more »
  • Amaze balls. Very nice. Friendly staff. Lots of books. Very interesting how sadists expressed themselves in the olden days 
    Amaze balls. Very nice. Friendly staff. Lots of books. Very interesting how sadists expressed themselves in the olden days  more »
  • This museum has some truly fascinating artefacts and documents - torture implements, books and documents relating to the legal code at different times - some with beautiful illustrations, etc. It... 
    This museum has some truly fascinating artefacts and documents - torture implements, books and documents relating to the legal code at different times - some with beautiful illustrations, etc. It...  more »
Google
  • This museum is fascinating! They offer learning of both the evolution of punishment and laws through history with a focus on medieval Europe. My kids (both under 10) really liked the exhibits about school discipline and the dioramas. Many displays prompted us to have family conversations about why standard laws and rules are important for peoples lives and how they can foster expectations of behavior and order. We all thought the gossip masks were hilarious and maybe they should be brought back (j/k). Most signs are in both German and English and offer more information then I read but I really enjoyed all of it!
  • Great place! Very interesting and well laid out. Nearly everything in English as well, and staff able to answer questions. Worth it for sure.
  • Excellent view of law and punishment. See books from 1200s with illustrations. Fascinating place. Got lost in history for 5 hours. Well worth the visit and one of our highlights. 2014.
  • Very interesting and I'm glad I didn't live during that era. It was worth the visit but could have been organized better.
  • One of the better museums with English signage. As usual, not every item has English labels, but the overall commentary is in English, and all the basic descriptions are there. Very cool topic, they start you right off on the torture instruments in a dungeon setting, so it's quite atmospheric too. It's bizarre and fascinating how public shaming was a regular part of life, and that torture was used with "proper" cause to get confessions or "prove" innocence, even ahead of a guilty verdict. After you were found guilty, then you could look forward to more torture or execution! Fun! There is also (I think) an original iron maiden, very cool to see. There was a bonus exhibit about animals and their involvement in crime and the legal system and such. I was really looking forward to this, but it was 100% German, a disappointing departure from other temp exhibits at other museums. Talking about crime, that's what this is ... At the end of it, I was very tempted to give only 2 or 3 stars. Go for the main museum for sure, don't come just for any bonus exhibits. Tip: Feel free to photo any placards not in English, which you can run through the Google translate app later. At least it makes for a slightly faster experience! I read most things and spent not quite 3 hours in total.

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