Hofburg of Vienna

Hofburg, the former imperial palace of the Hapsburgs where they stay mainly in the winter.

St. Michael’s Wing facing the square. Guarding the gate are four statues of Hercules.  The first left statue is Hercules slaying the Lernaean Hydra,

The palace had been built slowly adding expansions, such as the Royal Court Chapel, the Imperial Library, the Treasury, Burgtheater, and a Spanish Riding School long with stables and stalls.  Today, it is also the official working office and residence of the President of Austria.

The stables for the Spanish Riding School.

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Joseph Square houses the Imperial Library, the roof is of attic style by Lorenzo Mattlielli in 1726. In front is a statue of Emperor Joseph II on a horse
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Athena riding in a chariot depicting Triumph
Gaia (Mother Earth) supporting the terrestrial Globe with Geography and Geometry
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Atlas holding the celestial Globe with Astronomy and Astrology
Austrian National Library
Court Library (Hofbibliothek)

Entrance to the most beautiful library.  It was first constructed by Charles VI, the Holy Roman Emperor in 1722 to house the collection of all the valuable books and manuscripts collected since the Middle Ages.  After the collapse of the Holy Roman Empire.  Under the Hapsburgs the library began to take on a new mission to be the place where information and knowledge could be sought and provided.  It started to accumulate a wider field of the 19 century’s knowledge of science and topography as well as some rare literary works of foreign languages such as papyrus collection.  Its splendor signifies its importance to the Hapsburgs.

Entry to the Prunksaal- the State Hall is the central structure of the old Imperial Library open to visitors. Lined with statues of Holy Roman Emperors
Statue of Charles VI in the center of the Prunksaal by Peter and Paul Strudel

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Behind the statue, one can see every wall space was designed to store books and reading light provided by the windows upstairs.
The center fresco of the dome is the glorification of Emperor Charles VI held up by Hercules and Apollo. Surrounded by pictorial of Hapsburgs virtuous deeds, wealth and expanded domains.  In between the windows are groups questing for various knowledge.

On the arches above the columns are frescos about war and peace.  See below.

The globe of 18 century

We now know there was a quest for knowledge but look at the Globe, we find that their knowledge then was limited.  So is the theory of a “Just War” which only serve to justify war over peace.  With what we know today,  could there ever be a “Just War” without destroying the only earth we know off?

 

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