We wandered about Prinzipalmarkt in Muenster looking at the pretty buildings. Muenster had been a German army headquarters during the 1940s, and was heavily bombed by the US Air Force in 1943. So most of what we saw was rebuilt. The style is of the gabled houses common in this region from the 15th century CE onwards.
The ridge line of the gables is perpendicular to the street, and the end that faces the street is built up over the roof into a high decorative front. We stopped at the building which you see in the photo above. The upper three stories are clearly post-war reconstruction, but below that was the exuberance of a town flush with Hanseatic trade. Look at the lion heads at hip-height, supporting the front columns! The featured photo is a close-up of the columns: a mermaid and a merman, over whose heads hang carved flowers and fruits.
The heads which decorate the lintel above the tall windows on the ground floor are also very interesting. They probably show how well-off people of that time dressed. Interestingly they follow a convention which you can see on TV news shows even today. When a man and a woman appear together, conventionally the man looks out at the world, whereas the woman looks at the man. How hard it is to evolve out of that convention.