Tiit Veermäe
Before After

The Stable Tower


The Stable Tower or Marstall Tower or Work Yard Tower.

I have always been named this way according to the workshops of the city, which immediately moved here to my vicinity below the hill, when my larger neighbor and i, the Maiden Tower and the adjoining wall were erected in defense of the city. Which happened almost 650 years ago. The work yard was called the Marstall or horse stable. There were smithies here, where initially horses were shoed, later weapons were made and even later all of the grand cannons and church bells of the city were cast.

I warn you that my pretty sweet look is deceptive! I was used as a prison in the 17th century, during the Swedish period. The citizens did not like the prison comfort I offered. It was very cold in here and the prisoners were kept in chains, so that they would not slip away to freedom through my defensive openings. The prisoners could admire the proud noblemen and their horses through the defensive openings during the day but at night they would experience an appalling view instead: ghosts that exited the cell walls.

There is a story of a young man who lived four centuries ago – the son of the Mayor, Hans von Gerten. His crime was that – lovelorn – he had promised a girl engagement, but later when the passion had cooled down, he left the promise unfulfilled, wounding the honour of the virtuous maiden. The mother of Hans who was allowed to visit the cell, where his sentence was served, fainted when the son described how awful the conditions were. It was even considered in the city hall whether to even close the prison, as others too had complained about their terrible endurances. It is for this reason that I have been considered as the oldest ghost tower in Tallinn. It has been said that here, together with my neighbouring towers, are actually the most haunted place in the city!

The first gap to be opened in this section of the wall was made right next to me (viewed from the city side, to the left). It was closed half a century ago, but its arched niche is still visible today due to the lighter coloured stones. A larger opening which allowed for the access of fire engines was made later, on the other side of the wall.

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