The Thousand-year Rose is also known as the Rose of Hildesheim. It grows on a wall of a Catholic cathedral in Hildesheim, Germany.

The cathedral and the adjacent St. Michael’s Church have been on the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites since 1985. The rose that climbs on the wall of the cathedral is believed to be the oldest living rose in the world.

The wild dog rose, Rosa canina, grows against the eastern apse of the cathedral and reaches a height of around 33 ft. and documentation verifies its age at approximately 700 years.

The aerial bombardment of 1945, which damaged the cathedral and the apse also killed the main growth of the rose bush above the ground; under the rubble, only the charred stump of the rose remained.

It was thought that the end of the famous rose had come, but the roots were largely intact, and in the spring of 1945 it put out 25 new shoots. The first sparse flowers bloomed in 1947, and by 1948 there were 122 flowers. According to legend, while the rose bush flourishes, Hildesheim will prosper.