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Schloss Artstetten

Franz Ferdinand & his family

sunny 25 °C

Here the life and times of Archduke-Heir Franz Ferdinand.
His family, his home, his military career and his hobbies.
His personality, his happiness, his life and his death.

Franz_Ferdinand.jpg FF_with_Sophie.jpg FF_with_family.jpg

Why would I be interested to know him better?
Because it's the same Franz Ferdinand, who was assassinated in Sarajevo.

His death was the immediate cause of World War I.

Couple of years ago I found that WWI is much closer to us that we use to think. In 21th century, we are still dealing with WWII, like it was fresh. WWI stays in shadow, and this shadow gets blurry. Being a fan of the time that boundaries between the 19th and 20th centuries, I feel connected to early 20th century: not only to art and incredible technology progress, but to people who made the history, to events and to the the rest.

Andre says that my verbiage sound (just as naive and funny) alike the quotes taken from "Good Soldier Ċ vejk"of Gashek.good-soldier-svejk.jpg
I was not lazy and found online the pages where
Svejk is talking about the event in Saraevo.
Man, it really very similar to my vision of the situation ;-P
Hah, he is right then!
So what?

Schloss Artstetten (13th cent) was bought by imperial family of Habsburg in 19th cent, and it used to be home for Franz Ferdinand. Now it's private property of one of the Hohenberg Family and it is quite logical that most of the documents, photographs, personal belongings and all that concerns the family is stored here. I have my favorite objects and they seem to me the most interesting in this exposition. It's not objective review, but reflects my vision; so if you are keen in 20th century history and facts more then I do (and really it's not difficult to be) - you probably will find another interesting artifacts and will choose different objects.


Here is the list of exhibits in random order:
- European Maps, dated 1912
- collection of hats
- family photographs: not only an official portraits, but kids and teens posed to camera. Ladies, beautiful like flowers, men with thoroughbred faces. Men, women and kids - they all have incredibly straight back - perfect posture. The ease and elegance of the gestures - the fruits of a good education. They look familiar, look modern and very real people. At least that how I feel about them.

Sophie.jpg FF_with_wife__2_.jpg FF_with_wife.jpg
On the left picture: Sophie - FF's daughter.
In the center and right side: FF with his wife, Sophie Chotek

And then - there is a photo of this teenager who shoot the Imperial Pride. Young man, with very bright eyes and absolute belief of the rightness of the offense. Here is a photo from the newspaper: bustled crowd, policemen are pulling the guy out. He looks short and slim. Here is Gavrillo Princip - the son of a postman. Now his memory is treated as he was a national hero. Gavrillo joined "the secret Black Hand society" (a nationalist movement favouring a union between Bosnia-Herzegovina and Serbia). Princip was one of three men sent to assassinate Archduke Franz Ferdinand. The three men were instructed to commit suicide after killing the Archduke.

Princip was arrested. He was too young to receive the death penalty, being a month short of his twentieth birthday at the time of the assassination. Instead, he received the maximum sentence of twenty years in prison. He had tuberculosis and dead in 1918 in the prison.

I continue thinking about it. I would like to know what his father-postman was thinking about it?
Murder is never acceptable, but I could understand murder for personal reasons: hate, jealousy, even robbery and vendetta make sence. But political murder? Why someone will do this?

Posted by vanessa 13:52 Archived in Austria Tagged franz schloss sophie murder wwi tuberculosis artstetten ferdinand shweik archduke saraevo gavrillo princip chotek Comments (0)

In Grein

semi-overcast 22 °C

Grein is a village in Apper Austria - about 60km from Linz. Well-preserved and quiet, even in high season, Grein is situated on Danube River and many of region bike-pathes going through. It's famous for the historic town theater (1791) and impressive Greinburg castle on the hill above.

That info that I found about the theatre. Unfortunatelly I only was in the lobby and didn't have time to visit it inside. What a pity!
"...The historic town theater of Grein (1791) is one of the outstanding sights of European importance. Here you can see many curiosities from olden times. Original seats that had to be locked/unlocked with a small key; a toilet that was separated from the auditorium only with a curtain; a prison from where the prisoners could watch the performances and were given food, drinks and tobacco by the audience; the Napoleon box and a lot more."


Deers near the schloss.

Greinburg is the oldest residential castle of Austria (was built from 1500 to 1700), and proudly save history of Dukes that lived and ruled there. It's interesting museum inside, but building itself even more impressive. : late Renaissance courtyard full of light, various rooms, arches, windows, painted ceilings, narror steps and wide balconies, beautiful furniture and art objects, etc.


But at the end of the courtyard, few steps down, here is Sala Terrena, which is refreshing surprise. This grotto room is unique in Austria as one of the earliest examples of such an interior room north of the Alps. Outstanding and unusual, very spacious room(s), all covered with figurative and ornamental mosaics, all made from Danube pebbles (riverstones).


Most of mosaics are monochrome, made in tones of gray, but here and there they flash with red pach or black line.
Beautiful. Guess when Sala Terrena was built?


From the castle we stepped down to the town (3,500 citizents - counted as a village or town?)

Oh, that's very sweet!
Many beautiful buildings, greenery and no crowd except of group on bicycles.

There r lovely Central Square and famous old theatre

Street barometr - for comfort of citizents, here and still works since 19th century.

and other signs. Between cafes and souvenir shops (standard crap to lure tourists) - it was something else that caught my eye.

It was a small shop of crafts that sold goods and souvenirs producted by ppl with special needs. When we entered - we seen them inside, working, because it's also workshop there. They were excited by appearance of visitors and watched us with interest. Most of these people are very uncovered emotionaly, just like kids, so I could see how pleasured they were when we made a choice and purchased semitransperent scarf in colors of autumn. I didn't take any photos inside as was not sure if it was ethical, but may be I should do.

Later, walking in the street, we seen cafe and bakery, where those people worked. They looked happy being involved in real production. I think community of Grein doing great thing, making it possible. I'm sure that behind of it - there is an organisation and professionals who help, but also citizents (don't forget that it's just a village!) need a heart to accept this everyday involve and interraction.

Posted by vanessa 05:43 Archived in Austria Tagged danube castle schloss dawn grein autism upper_austria special_needs Comments (1)

- Hadersdorf and Schloss Laudon

With Franz and Nina

sunny 28 °C

Lunch that comes into dinner in lovely garden of Franz and Nina, and then some "sightseeing" nearby.
Schloss Laudon - first mentioned in 12cent as a fort. Damaged with turkes (in 16th cent) and immediatelly restored, then damaged by turkes again (in 17th cent) and re-built once again in 18th cent as a baroque castle, the Laudon Castle is partly accessible to the public. Place of music festivals.

Posted by vanessa 15:42 Archived in Austria Tagged vienna schloss schloss_laudon laudon Comments (0)

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