Maximilian Platz Vienna Austria about 1892

Maximilian Platz Vienna Austria about 1892

MAXIMILIAN PLATZ, VIENNA — This handsome square is only one of many features of Vienna which reminds us of Paris. No other European capitals are so alike in architecture, character and customs. Both are pre-eminently beautiful and brilliant, and both have points in history which possess a strong resemblance. Both, for example, were originally Roman settlements. In each a Caesar has resided. The Emperor Julian living in the one; Marcus Aurelius dying in the other. In modern times the most ill-fated of French Queens was the unhappy daughter of Maria Theresa, Marie Antoinette; while from Vienna also comes Napoleon’s second wife, whose son, born heir to an inheritance on which the boldest gazed with bated breath, died in obscurity within the palace of an Austrian Emperor. On one side of this square we see the exquisitely sculptured spires of a Gothic church, erected to commemorate the present Emperor’s escape from assassination. For, notwithstanding his great popularity, a miscreant was found some years ago desirous of killing him. This he attempted to accomplish by aiming at his throat with a dagger; the gilt upon the Emperor’s military collar, however, turned the point of the weapon, and his life was saved. As for the church, it is so beautiful as to make one almost glad that the assassination was attempted! There is no part of it that does not call for admiration; but especially delicate and graceful are these pointed towers embellished with a multitude of statues and rising to the lofty height of 345 feet. Through that open fret-work the stars are visible at night, as through the interlacing branches of the trees. (from John L. Stoddard, Glimpses of the world; a portfolio of photographs of the marvelous works of God and man – 1892)



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