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10 January 2010

Zentralfriedhof

Today I visited Zentralfriedhof, the Central Cemetery. This is the largest and most famous cemetery in Vienna. It has more than two and a half million corpses, which is larger than the population here, and it is bigger than the Innere Stadt, the City Centre.


It is full of beautiful statues and in my opinion now is definately the time to visit, the snow seems very fitting. Being so large I of course did not see much at all. I went in the main gate and walked straight ahead.


I stopped to take photos of some of the more impressive statues, and the ones that just caught my eye in general.


Before you know it, you have found the section in which all of the famous composers have been buried. It is impossible to miss (luckily). The statue below is a monument to Mozart, though he was not actually buried here. He was buried in another cemetery, and nobody quite knows where. This is thought to be quite scandalous but really, he died just before giving people huge lavish funerals began here in Austria, so like everybody else he was just put in the ground without any big fuss. Now they have a rough idea of where he was probably buried, but back then apparently they cleared the bones out of the graves every few years to make space. So he probably is not still there anyway.


Next is the grave of Beethoven. He was also not originally buried here, but he was dug up about 60 years after death and re-interred in this cemetery (the other was shut down).


Alongside Beethoven lies Schubert, he was also re-buried here after being moved from the cemetery that shut down. They reckon he might have died of syphilus.


Johann Ritter von Herbeck, another Austrian musician. This one I had not heard of before.


Next to von Herbeck is Brahms, who I had heard of but I am not sure that I know any of his music. And I don't know why his monument features a book when he was a composer. Also he apparently hated cats.


This monument was just beside the composers and I thought it was quite impressive. It belongs to Carl Ritter von Ghega who built a famous railway.


This next statue is the monument of Johann Strauss, yet another composer. I am right now watching on tv the Viennesse Orchestra's New Years Concert and they are currently playing a piece by Strauss. Strauss is famous for composing waltzes.


Now I have left the composer's section and I am not sure who these graves and monuments belong to.


This big canopied one belonged to one of the Mayors (Burgermeister) of Vienna.





This church is in the centre of the city and is named after another mayor.


Inside it is very nice but it was very quiet. You can go underneath, but it is not that interesting down there.


It has a very nice domed ceiling.


Here is another very nice statue.


This statue was big and sort of creepy. It did not seem to have a face.


And a funky cross.


I'm not sure what this sign is all about. This is in the U-bahn station (the subway station).

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