Aurich (German pronunciation ; East Frisian Low Saxon: Auerk, West Frisian: Auwerk, Saterland Frisian: Aurk) is a town in the East Frisian region of Lower Saxony, Germany. It is the capital of the district of Aurich and is the second largest City in East Frisia, both in population, after Emden, and in area, after Wittmund.

Pedestrian zone in Aurich
Coat of arms
Location of Aurich within Aurich district
Coordinates: 53°28′17″N 07°29′01″E
StateLower Saxony
  MayorHorst Feddermann (Ind.)
  Total197.21 km2 (76.14 sq mi)
4 m (13 ft)
  Density210/km2 (550/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
  Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)
Postal codes
Dialling codes04941
Vehicle registrationAUR


Historical affiliations
County of East Frisia 1464–1744

 Kingdom of Prussia 1744–1808
Kingdom of Holland 1808–1810
 First French Empire 1810–1813
 Kingdom of Prussia 1813–1815
 Kingdom of Hanover 1815–1866
 Kingdom of Prussia 1866–1871
 German Empire 1871–1918
 Weimar Republic 1918–1933
 Nazi Germany 1933–1945
 Allied-occupied Germany 1945–1949
 West Germany 1949–1990

 Germany 1990–present

The history of Aurich dates back to the 13th century, when the settlement of Aurechove was mentioned in a Frisian document called the Brokmerbrief in 1276. There are various hypotheses about the interpretation of the city name. It either refers to a person (Affo, East Frisian first name ) and his property (Reich) or it refers to waterworks on the fertile, water-rich lowland of the Aa (or Ehe) river, upon which the city was built; medieval realizations were Aurichove, Aurike, Aurikehove, Auerk, Auryke, Auwerckhove, Auwerick, Auwerck, Auwreke, Awerck, Awreke, Awrik, Auwerich and Aurickeshove .

In 1517, Count Edzard from the House of Cirksena began rebuilding the town after an attack. In 1539, the land authorities were brought together in Aurich, making it the county capital and, later, East Frisia, remaining the seat of the land authorities when East Frisia was inherited by the Kingdom of Prussia in 1744. After the Prussian Army was defeated in the Battle of Jena in 1807, Aurich became part of the Kingdom of Holland in 1808. In 1810, the Kingdom of Holland was annexed by France and Aurich was made the capital of the department Ems-Oriental of the First French Empire. After Napoleon was defeated in 1814, it passed to the Kingdom of Hanover in 1815, and then was annexed by Prussia in 1866 and made part of the Province of Hanover.

From 21 October 1944, until 23 December 1944, a Nazi concentration camp was established in Aurich. The camp was a subcamp to the Neuengamme concentration camp.[2]

After World War II, Aurich became part of the new state of Lower Saxony.

Local council

The local council has 40 members The elections in September 2016 showed the following results[3]

  • SPD: 13 seats
  • CDU: 11 seats
  • AWG 4 seats
  • Gemeinsam für Aurich (GfA), 4 seats
  • Alliance 90/The Greens 3 seats
  • The Left 2 seats
  • Grün-Alternative Politik (GAP)(Green alternative politics) 2 seats
  • FDP, 1 seat

Coat of arms

Aurich's coat of arms is drawn by the blazon: "Arms: Landscape with chief two-thirds sky and base third earth, a shield Gules emblazoned with letter 'A' Or, an open-topped crown Or above, two growing trees Vert at sides. Crown: A battlement Gules with three merlons and two embrasures. Supporters: Two branches of mistletoe with leaves and berries Or.".

Note that the coat of arms of the district with the same name is different.

Twin towns – sister cities

Aurich is twinned with:[4]

Notable people

Rudolf Eucken

See also


  1. Landesamt für Statistik Niedersachsen, LSN-Online Regionaldatenbank, Tabelle 12411: Fortschreibung des Bevölkerungsstandes, Stand 31. Dezember 2019.
  2. The camp is listed as No. 51 Aurich, Kreis Aurich in the official German list.
  3. "Stadtratswahl – Gesamtergebnis". Kommunalwahlen 2016 in der Stadt Aurich (in German). 26 July 1997. Retrieved 22 February 2021.
  4. "Partnerstadt Appingedam". (in German). Aurich. Retrieved 4 February 2021.