The Clock Tower, built in 1280, is one of the symbols of Sighişoara. The 64m high tower guards the main entrance in the citadel and houses a magnificently designed clock. It is the only tower which did not belong to the craft guilds and hosted, in the course of time, the town council, the courthouse, and later the prison and an arms dump. Inside the tower you can visit the History Museum, the Torture Chamber in the building’s underground and a small museum of medieval weapons.
Designed to resist attacks, the tower had a military function. Initially it was simple and austere in form, with only two levels and 2m-thick walls. It was first used to store weapons and ammunition, the treasury and the town archives. In the 16th century it assumed its actual shape, with two other levels added and a tower, which contributed to its actual imposing architectural aspect. In 1844, a covered wooden gallery was built along the length of the exterior wall, in order to ease the access of the old people in the citadel. The elegant steep roof, 34m long, built in Baroque style, dominates the tower. The roof was last repaired in 1894, when it was also adorned with multicoloured enamel tiles and a hexagram motif.
After the catastrophic fire of 1676 destroyed the tower almost completely, it was restored and the restructuring of its interior give birth to the Torture Chamber. Included within the structure of the history museum, this small medieval prison is now open to the public, exhibiting the chains used to shackle the prisoners, the 6kg stones hung from the necks of the wrongdoers tied to the pole of infamy and a torture rack.
At the beginning of the 17th century, a clock with figurines was installed on the 5th floor. Its two faces were oriented one towards the citadel and one towards the Lower Town. The mechanism consisted of seven figurines, each representing a day of the week, which rotated every 24 hours. The figurines, carven in linden-tree wood, are embodiment of Greek and Roman gods. Under this mechanism there is another, composed of only two figurines representing a drummer and an executioner. The tower’s facade facing the citadel also presents others sculptures, being an attraction for tourists.
Since 1899, the Clock Tower has housed the History Museum. At the first floor it exhibits an archaeological collection, while the second one it displays pharmaceutical and medicinal objects. The other floors and rooms of the tower house different pieces of furniture, handicraft articles, pottery, firearms and military equipment, as well as a large part of the documentary treasures of the town , in an attempt to reconstitute parts of the atmosphere of medieval Sighişoara.
Summer schedule (May 15th – September 15th)
Tuesday – Friday: 9:00 – 17:30
Saturday – Sunday: 10:00 – 17:30V Winter schedule (September 16th – May 14th)
Tuesday – Friday: 9:00 – 15:30
Saturday – Sunday: 10:00 – 15:30
How to get there:
The Clock Tower is situated at the entrance in the town’s historical centre, in the Museum Square.
On foot/By taxi: From Sighişoara train station, the Clock Tower is within 10-15min walking distance.