Coesfeld (German pronunciation: [ˈkoːsfɛlt]) is the capital of the district of Coesfeld in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia.

Coesfeld Fußgängerzone.jpg
Coat of arms of Coesfeld
Coat of arms
Location of Coesfeld within Coesfeld district
North Rhine-WestphaliaRecklinghausen (district)Unna (district)HammBorken (district)Steinfurt (district)MünsterWarendorf (district)OlfenRosendahlSendenBillerbeckDülmenAschebergHavixbeckCoesfeldNottulnLüdinghausenNordkirchenCoesfeld in COE.svg
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Coesfeld is located in Germany
Coesfeld is located in North Rhine-Westphalia
Coordinates: 51°57′N 7°10′E / 51.950°N 7.167°E / 51.950; 7.167Coordinates: 51°57′N 7°10′E / 51.950°N 7.167°E / 51.950; 7.167
StateNorth Rhine-Westphalia
Admin. regionMünster
 • MayorHeinz Öhmann (CDU)
 • Total141.05 km2 (54.46 sq mi)
89 m (292 ft)
 • Total36,257
 • Density260/km2 (670/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)
Postal codes
Dialling codes02541
Vehicle registrationCOE


The Catholic St. Lambert Kirche, the destination of the yearly Grand Cross procession, with its 17th-century baroque tower.

Coesfeld received its city rights in 1197, but was first recorded earlier than that in the biography of St. Ludger, patron and first bishop of the diocese of Munster who was born north of Coesfeld in Billerbeck. The day before he died, Ludger spent the night in Coesfeld and heard mass in the morning in the church he founded. He was on his way from his abbey in Essen to Münster. The road he followed passed Coesfeld and Billerbeck, and after preaching in the St. Lambert's church, 26 March 809, he travelled on to Billerbeck, where he died in the evening.

The Coesfeld St. Jacobikirche dates from the same period as the city charter. For centuries, Coesfeld was an important stopping place for pilgrims traveling one of the more popular Germanic Jakobi routes (Way of St. James) leading from Warendorf over Münster (via Billerbeck) to Coesfeld, and then on via Borken to Wesel on the Rhine.

Bernhard von GalenEdit

One of the 18 stations of the cross in Coesfeld, erected in Galen's time by his Danish architect Pieter Pictorius.

During the Thirty Years War, troops were stationed in Coesfeld. The Prince-bishop of Münster was often at odds with these troops. Bernhard von Galen managed to drive the foreign troops away and even started to build a palace in Coesfeld, but it was never finished and after he died it was torn down. He became known for his sieges of Dutch cities in his efforts for the counter reformation and started a Way of the Cross procession that still exists up to the present day, with 18 stations of the cross. One procession round the historic centre of Coesfeld is still held on Whitmonday but the "Great Procession along the stations of the cross" held for centuries on Whit Tuesday is now held on 9/14 (Exaltation of the Cross) if it is a Sunday otherwise on the Sunday thereafter.

[See German language version for somewhat more detailed history.]


The 12th century St. Jakobikirche was bombed during WWII, but the old doorway survives and a new church was built behind it.
Coesfeld cross hung with silver votive decorations

Coesfeld is situated in the Baumberge in Münsterland.

Neighbouring municipalitiesEdit


Coesfeld consists of 2 subdivisions:

  • Coesfeld
  • Lette


Major secondary schools are:

Persons of interestEdit

  • Leunclavius (1541–1594), humanist, legal scholar, Greek scholar and historian
Christoph Bernhard von Galen 1670


  1. ^ "Bevölkerung der Gemeinden Nordrhein-Westfalens am 31. Dezember 2019" (in German). Landesbetrieb Information und Technik NRW. Retrieved 17 June 2020.

External linksEdit

  Media related to Coesfeld at Wikimedia Commons