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Hofburg


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The famous building complex of Hofburg quarter (after which the quarter has been named) situated in the center of Vienna is the famous Hofburg. It is a hard tour to walk in it everywhere, considering the fact that its area exceeds 240.000 sqm (18 buildings, 54 staircases and 19 courts), each room is a piece of the history of the emperor families and through them the city, even the whole country.

In its early ages it served as a fort, but through the centuries it was always enlarged until it became a huge palace as a result. It was a tool to express the might, almost every sovereign built an own wing to it. This way Hofburg evolved a "town in the town", where recently more than 5.000 employee work. What we see in our days, it is a result of about 800 years' creative work. The total of the complex comprises the representatives of a variety of eras in art.

Representing renaissance (pretty far from one another)
  • Stallburg - It was built in the middle of 16th century for prince Maximilian, it was reconstructed to stable of Hofburg. The three floors high stables located around a court with renaissance arcades can be visited as a part of Lippizaner Museum.
  • Schweizertor - This renaissance gate from the 16th century opens to Schweizerhof, which is the oldest part of Hofburg and which was a fort with four towers once.
  • Amalienburg - with its irregular ground-plan, Amalienburg was built in 1575 for Rudolf, son of emperor Maximilian. The front of the building is in renaissance style, in its middle a beautiful baroque clock tower is erected.

    Features of early baroque characterize the Reichskanzlei, the Reitschule, the Hofbibliothek and the
  • Leopoldinischer Trakt (Leopold wing) - Each of the several rooms in the long building would offer a thick book of background knowledge to the visitor about the habits and tastes of ancient times.

    The late baroque wing is
  • Michaelertrakt looking down onto Michaelerplatz - the dome room was constructed by Josef von Erlach, famous baroque architect. There is an imposing dome above the semi-circle building.

    The newest part was built in the end of the 19th century (being also structurally an independent unit).
  • Neue Hofburg - It was built in renaissance and classicist style in the time of the decline of the Hapsburgs. In our days it is the home of the large readers room of the National Library and several museums.

    Other sights in Hofburg:
  • Prunksaal - This 77 m long building is the largest baroque library readers room in Europe, many consider it also the most beautiful.
  • Monument of Eugen von Savoya - The monument of Prince Eugen von Savoya was designed by Anton Dominik Fernkorn. The pedestal is a masterpiece of Eduard van der Nüll.
  • Mozart monument - This sculpture, work of Viktor Tilgner stands next to the entrance from the Ringstrasse.
  • Burgkapelle - This chapel offers a home for the famous Wiener Sängerknaben (Boys' Choir of Vienna) every Sunday. In the church gothic sculptures are seen in niches with baldachins, also gothic carvings.


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