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Das Schweriner Schloss im Winter 2010.jpg
14-09-10-Schwerin-RalfR-N3S 3052-17.jpg
1406-04-076 Ostdeutschland Schwerin Dom.JPG
Flagge Schwerin.svg
DEU Schwerin COA.svg
Coat of arms
Location of Schwerin
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Mecklenburg-Vorpommern location map.svg
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Coordinates: 53°38′0″N11°25′0″E / 53.63333°N 11.41667°E / 53.63333; 11.41667 Coordinates: 53°38′0″N11°25′0″E / 53.63333°N 11.41667°E / 53.63333; 11.41667
Country Germany
State Mecklenburg-Vorpommern
District Urban district
Subdivisions18 boroughs
   Lord mayor Rico Badenschier (SPD)
  Total130.46 km2 (50.37 sq mi)
38 m (125 ft)
 (2020-12-31) [1]
  Density730/km2 (1,900/sq mi)
Time zone UTC+01:00 (CET)
  Summer (DST) UTC+02:00 (CEST)
Postal codes
19053, 19055, 19057, 19059, 19061, 19063
Dialling codes 0385
Vehicle registration SN
County of Schwerin

Grafschaft Schwerin
Coat of arms
County of Schwerin locator map (1250).svg
County of Schwerin during the time of the Hohenstaufen Emperors (circa 1250)
Historical era Middle Ages
 Partitioned to Schwerin
    and Schwerin-Wittenburg
 Partitioned to create
 Inherited Tecklenburg
 Schwerin-Schwerin comital line
1349 1358
 Comital line extinct; sold
    to Mecklenburg-Schwerin
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Coat of arms of Saxony.svg Duchy of Saxony
Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin Flagge Grossherzogtumer Mecklenburg.svg

Bistum Schwerin
Bishopric of Schwerin locator map (1250).svg
Bishopric of Schwerin during the time of the Hohenstaufen Emperors (circa 1250)
Historical era Middle Ages
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Coat of arms of Saxony.svg Duchy of Saxony
Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin Flagge Grossherzogtumer Mecklenburg.svg

Schwerin ( UK: /ʃvɛˈrn/ , US: /ʃvˈrn/ , German: [ʃveˈʁiːn] ( Loudspeaker.svg listen ); Mecklenburgian Low German: Swerin; Latin: Suerina, Suerinum) is the capital and second-largest city of the northeastern German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern as well as of the region of Mecklenburg, after Rostock. It has around 96,000 inhabitants, and is thus the least populous of all German state capitals.


Schwerin is located on the southwestern shore of Lake Schwerin (German:Schweriner See), one of the largest lakes of the Mecklenburg Lake Plateau, and there are eleven other lakes within its city limits. The city is surrounded by the district of Northwestern Mecklenburg to the north, and the district of Ludwigslust-Parchim to the south. Schwerin lies in the east of the Hamburg Metropolitan Region. The name of the city is of Slavic origin, deriving from the root zvěŕ (wild animal) or zvěŕin ( game reserve , animal garden, stud farm ).

Schwerin was first mentioned in 1018 as Zuarina and was granted city rights in 1160 by Henry the Lion, thus it is the oldest city of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. From 1379 to 1815, the city was, as main residence of the House of Mecklenburg, the capital of the Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, and from 1815, when the duke was elevated to the title of a grand duke, to 1918, the capital of the Grand Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin. The city is known for the romantic Schwerin Palace with its characteristic golden dome and its Niklot statue, that is situated on an island in Lake Schwerin. The dukes and grand dukes of Mecklenburg-Schwerin ruled from there, and since 1990, the palace is the official seat of the state parliament of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. The city also has a largely intact old town, thanks to only minor damage in World War II.

Major industries and employers include high technology, machine building, healthcare, government agencies, railway supply, consumer goods and tourism. Schwerin has three academic colleges, the FHM, HdBA and the Design School.


Early years

Schwerin is enclosed by lakes. The largest of these lakes, the Schweriner See , has an area of 60 km2. In the middle part of these lakes there was a settlement of the Slavic Obotrite (dated back to the 11th century). The area was called Zuarin (Polabian Zwierzyn), and the name Schwerin is derived from that designation. In 1160, Henry the Lion defeated the Obotrites and captured Schwerin. The town was later expanded into a powerful regional centre. A castle was built on this site, and expanded to become a ducal palace. It is supposedly haunted by the small, impious ghost, called Petermännchen ("Peterman").

In 1358, Schwerin became a part of the Duchy of Mecklenburg, making it the seat of the duchy from then on. About 1500, the construction of the Schwerin Palace began, as a residence for the dukes. After the division of Mecklenburg (1621), Schwerin became the capital of the Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin. Between 1765 and 1837, the town of Ludwigslust served as the capital, until Schwerin was reinstated.

Recent times

In the mid-1800s, many residents from Schwerin moved to the United States, many to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Today Milwaukee and Schwerin are sister cities. After 1918, and during the German Revolution, resulting in the fall of all the German monarchies, the Grand Duke abdicated. Schwerin became capital of the Free State of Mecklenburg-Schwerin thereafter.

At the end of World War II, on 2 May 1945, Schwerin was taken by United States troops. It was turned over to the British on 1 June 1945, and one month later, on 1 July 1945, [2] it was handed over to the Soviet forces, as the British and American forces pulled back from the line of contact to the predesignated occupation zones.

Schwerin was then in the Soviet Occupation Zone which was to become the German Democratic Republic (GDR). Initially, it was the capital of the State of Mecklenburg which at that time included the western part of Pomerania (Vorpommern). After the states were dissolved in the GDR, in 1952, Schwerin served as the capital of the Schwerin district (Bezirk Schwerin).

After reunification in 1990, the former state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern was recreated as one of the Bundesländer . Rostock was a serious contender for state capital but the decision went in favour of Schwerin.


The urban area of Schwerin is divided into 18 local districts, [3] each with a local council. The districts consist of one or more districts. The local councilors have between 5 and 15 members depending on the number of inhabitants.

They are determined by the city council for the duration of the election period of the city council after each municipal election. The local councilors are to hear important matters concerning the district and have a right of initiative. However, the final decisions are made by the city council of the city as a whole.

The eighteen current districts are the following:


City buses and trams are run by NVS (Nahverkehr Schwerin). [4]

Schwerin Hauptbahnhof (central station) is connected by rail to Berlin, Hamburg and Rostock.

Main sights


Crime rate

According to the official 2007 Crime Report for Germany, Schwerin was the only German city with a crime rate over 17,000 total offenses committed per 100,000 inhabitants; [5] thus being 1st in the list of Germany's most dangerous cities. The larger cities, such as Berlin, Frankfurt am Main, or Bremen, all have crime rates ranging from 14,000 to 16,000 total offenses committed per 100,000 people. However, Schwerin is the only city where riding a bus (or tram) without a ticket and social security fraud is counted towards the crime rate, significantly boosting the numbers. [6]

Twin towns – sister cities

Schwerin is twinned with: [7]

Notable people

Panoramic view of Schwerin's historic city centre Panorama Schwerin.jpg
Panoramic view of Schwerin's historic city centre

Related Research Articles

Mecklenburg Historical region of Germany

Mecklenburg is a historical region in northern Germany comprising the western and larger part of the federal-state Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. The largest cities of the region are Rostock, Schwerin, Neubrandenburg, Wismar and Güstrow.

Mecklenburg-Vorpommern State in Germany

Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, also known by its anglicized name Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania or Mecklenburg-West Pomerania, is a state in the north-east of Germany. Of the country's sixteen states, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern ranks 14th in population, 6th in area, and 16th in population density. Schwerin is the state capital and Rostock is the largest city. Other major cities include Neubrandenburg, Stralsund, Greifswald, Wismar and Güstrow.

Nordwestmecklenburg is a Kreis (district) in the north-western part of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany. It is situated on the coast of the Baltic Sea and borders on Schleswig-Holstein to the west. Neighboring districts are Rostock, Ludwigslust-Parchim and the district-free city Schwerin, and the district Lauenburg and the district-free city Lübeck in Schleswig-Holstein. The district seat is the town Wismar.

Ludwigslust Place in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany

Ludwigslust is a central castle town of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany, 40 km south of Schwerin. Since 2011 it has been part of the Ludwigslust-Parchim district.

Güstrow Place in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany

Güstrow is a town in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany. It is capital of the Rostock district; Rostock itself is a district-free city and regiopolis.

Neustrelitz Place in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany

Neustrelitz is a town in the Mecklenburgische Seenplatte district in the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany. It is situated on the shore of the Zierker See in the Mecklenburg Lake District. From 1738 until 1918 it was the capital of the duchy of Mecklenburg-Strelitz. From 1994 until 2011 it was the capital of the district of Mecklenburg-Strelitz.

Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin

The Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin was a duchy in northern Germany created in 1701, when Frederick William and Adolphus Frederick II divided the Duchy of Mecklenburg between Schwerin and Strelitz. Ruled by the successors of the Nikloting House of Mecklenburg, Mecklenburg-Schwerin remained a state of the Holy Roman Empire along the Baltic Sea littoral between Holstein-Glückstadt and Duchy of Pomerania.

Schwerin Castle

Schwerin Castle, is a schloss located in the city of Schwerin, the capital of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern state, Germany. It is situated on an island in the city's main lake, Lake Schwerin.

House of Mecklenburg

The House of Mecklenburg, also known as Nikloting, is a North German dynasty of Slavic origin that ruled until 1918 in the Mecklenburg region, being among the longest-ruling families of Europe. Queen Juliana of the Netherlands (1909–2004), former Queen of the Netherlands (1948–1980), was an agnatic member of this house.

Lake Schwerin

Lake Schwerin is a lake in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, northern Germany. It was named after the city Schwerin, on its southwestern shore. The smaller town Bad Kleinen is on the north shore of the lake. Its surface is approximately 61.54 square kilometres (23.76 sq mi), and its maximum depth is 52.4 metres (172 ft). The natural outflow of the lake is the (channelized) river Stör, a tributary of the Elde, and part of the Elbe watershed. The Wallensteingraben, a 16th-century canal, connects the lake with the Baltic Sea at Wismar.

Grand Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin

The Grand Duchy of Mecklenburg-Schwerin was a territory in Northern Germany held by the House of Mecklenburg residing at Schwerin. It was a sovereign member state of the German Confederation and became a federated state of the North German Confederation and finally of the German Empire in 1871.

Dobin am See Place in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany

Dobin am See is a municipality in the Ludwigslust-Parchim district, in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany.

Mecklenburg Castle Castle in Dorf Mecklenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany

Mecklenburg Castle was a medieval castle and a residential capital of the Nakonid and Nikloting dynasties of the Obotrites. It was located just south of the modern village Dorf Mecklenburg, seven kilometres south of the Bay of Wismar in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany. The only remnants of the ruined castle are parts of an earthen wall. Some scholars have associated Mecklenburg with the medieval trading emporium Reric.

Grand Duchy of Mecklenburg Friedrich-Franz Railway

The Grand Duchy of Mecklenburg Friedrich-Franz Railway was the state railway company in Mecklenburg-Schwerin and Mecklenburg-Strelitz. After its second nationalisation in 1890 up to the merger of the Länderbahnen into the Deutsche Reichsbahn in 1920 it was under the direction of the Grand Duchy's Executive Railway Board in Schwerin.

The Ludwigslust–Wismar railway is an electrified railway in the German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. The Ludwigslust–Bad Kleinen section of the line is double track. The line was opened in 1848, by the Mecklenburg Railway Company and is one of the oldest railways in Germany.

Bad Kleinen–Rostock railway

The Bad Kleinen–Rostock railway is a double track electrified railway in the German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. The Ludwigslust–Bad Kleinen section of the line is double track. The line was opened in 1850 by the Mecklenburg Railway Company and is one of the oldest railways in Germany and is part of the Leipzig–Magdeburg–Schwerin–Rostock main line.

FC Mecklenburg Schwerin German football club

FC Mecklenburg Schwerin is a German football club based in Schwerin in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. The club was formed from a merger in 2013 and competes in the sixth tier Verbandsliga Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. The club plays its home matches at the Sportpark Lankow. FC Mecklenburg Schwerin also has gymnastics squads and an Esports department.

Trams in Schwerin

The Schwerin tramway network is a network of tramways forming the key feature of the public transport system in Schwerin, the capital city of the federal state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Germany.

Blankenberg (Meckl) station

Blankenberg (Meckl) station is a railway junction in the German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. The station was opened on 13 May 1850 and is one of the oldest railway stations in this state. It is at the intersection of the Bad Kleinen–Rostock and the Wismar–Karow railways. Regular passenger services run only on the former route. Most of the Wismar–Karow railway is closed, but between Blankenberg, Sternberg and Dabel there are occasional freight trains.


  1. "Statistisches Amt M-V – Bevölkerungsstand der Kreise, Ämter und Gemeinden 2020". Statistisches Amt Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (in German). July 2021.
  2. Some evidence[ citation needed ] calls into doubt the date on which the British withdrew to the predesignated occupation zone. Local residents claim that the British forces did not relinquish control of Schwerin until later in the year, probably November, following a brief artillery exchange across lake Schwerin between the British and the Soviets. Allegedly there were no deaths.
  3. "Stadtteile". (in German). Retrieved 2017-07-26.
  4. NVS (Nahverkehr Schwerin)
  5. Official Police Report for Germany, cf. p. 17.
  6. "19.05.07 / Aufgeklrt: Das wilde Rubernest Schwerin". Retrieved 31 March 2021.
  7. "Städtepartnerschaften". (in German). Schwerin. Retrieved 2021-03-24.