1902 Encyclopedia > Salzburg, Austria


SALZBURG, capital of the present Austrian crownland and formerly of the archbishopric of the same name, occu-pies a position of singular beauty on the Salzach, 87 miles south-east of Munich, and 154 miles west by south of Vienna. The river, flowing north-west from the glaciers of the Salzburg Alps to the Bavarian plain, passes at this point between, two isolated hills, the Mönchsberg (1732 feet) on the left and the Capuzinerberg (2132 feet) on the right; in the lovely valley so formed, and stretching into the plain beyond, lies Salzburg. The picturesque and wooded con-fining hills, the lofty citadel of Hohen-Salzburg, rising like a Greek acropolis above the towers and spires of the city at its foot, and the magnificent background of the Salzburg Alps, overhanging the broad plain, make Salzburg the most beautifully situated town in Austria or Germany. The older and main part of the city lies on the left bank of the Salzach, in a narrow semicircular plain at the base of the Mönchsberg; the newer town is on the right bank at the foot of the Capuzinerberg, which is separated from the river by the narrow suburb of Stein. At the south end of the old town, below the Nonnberg, or south-east spur of the Mönchsberg, is the suburb of Nonnthal; and at the north end is Mülln. The steep sides of the Mönchsberg rise directly from amidst the houses of the town, some of which have cellars and rooms hewn out of the rock; and the ancient cemetery of St Peter, the oldest in Salzburg, is bounded by a row of vaults cut in the side of the hill. The narrowest part of the ridge, which has a length of above two miles, is pierced by the Neu Thor, a tunnel 436 feet long and 23 feet broad, completed in 1767, to form a convenient passage from the town to the open plain. The south end of the Mönchsberg is occupied by the imposing Hohen-Salzburg, a citadel originally founded in the 9th century, though the present buildings, the towers of which rise 400 feet above the town, date chiefly from 1496-1519. The streets in the older quarters are narrow, crooked, and gloomy; but the newer parts of the city, especially those laid out since the removal of the fortifica-tions about 1861, are handsome and spacious. Owing to

Plan of Salzburg.

the frequent fires the private buildings of Salzburg are comparatively modern; and the present flat-roofed houses, lavishly adorned with marble, are, like many of the public buildings, monuments of the gorgeous taste of the prince archbishops of the 17th and 18th centuries. The style of the houses, the numerous open squares, and the abundant fountains give an Italian air to the town. Eoth sides of the river are bordered by fine promenades, planted with trees; and a public park has been laid out to the north of the new town. The Salzach is spanned by four bridges, including a railway bridge.

Salzburg is full of objects and buildings of interest. The cathedral, one of the largest and most perfect specimens of the Renaissance style in Germany, was built in 1614-28 by the Italian architect Santino Solari, in imitation of St Peter's at Rome. On three sides it is bounded by the Dom-Platz, the Capitel-Platz, and the Residenz-Platz ; and opening on the north-east and north-west of the last are the Mozart-Platz and the Markt-Platz. In the Mozart-Platz is a statue of Mozart, who was born in Salzburg in 1756. On one side of the Residenz-Platz is the palace, an irregular though imposing building in the Italian style, begun in 1592 and finished in 1725. It is now occupied by the grand-duke of Tus-cany. Opposite is the Neu Bau, begun in 1588, in which are the Government offices and the law courts. The palace of the present archbishops is in the Capitel-Platz. Across the river, with its French garden adjoining the purjlic park, is the Mirabell palace, formerly the summer residence of the prince archbishops. Built in 1607, and restored after a fire in 1818, it was presented to the town in 1867 by the emperor Francis Joseph. The building close to the Neu Thor, now the cavalry barracks, was formerly the sumptuous stables of the archbishops, built in 1607 to accom-modate 130 horses. Beside it is an amphitheatre, partly hewn out of the rock of the Mönchsberg in 1693, known as the Summer Riding School. The Winter Riding School, in the adjacent build-ing, has its ceiling decorated with the painting of a tournament, dating from 1690. The town-house of Salzburg was built in 1407 and restored in 1675. Other interesting secular buildings are the Chiemseehof, founded in 1305 and rebuilt in 1697, formerly the palace of the suffragan bishop of Chiemsee, and now the meeting-place of the Salzburg diet; the united school-building, erected in 1873 ; St John's hospital; the Carolino-Augusteum museum ; and the handsome Curhaus, erected in the public park in 1868.

Of the twenty-four churches the majority are interesting from their antiquity, their architecture, or their associations. Next to the cathedral, the chief is perhaps the abbey church of St Peter, a Romanesque basilica of 1127, tastelessly restored in 1745. It contains monuments to St Rupert, and to the " Monk of Salzburg," a religious poet of the latter half of the 14th century. St Margaret's, in the midst of St Peter's churchyard, built in 1485, and restored in 1865, is situated near the cave in the side of the Mönchsberg, said to have been the hermitage of St Maximus, who was martyred by the pagan Heruli in 477. The Franciscan church, with an elegant tower built in 1866, is an interesting example of the transition style of the 13th century, with later baroque additions. St Sebastian's, on the right bank, built in 1505-12 and restored in 1812, contains the tomb of Paracelsus, whose house stood in the Platzl, or square at the north end of the chief bridge. The oldest and most important of the eight convents (four for each sex) at Salzburg is the Benedictine abbey of St Peter, founded about 582 by St Rupert as the nucleus of the city. It contains a library of 40,000 volumes, besides MSS. The Capuchin monastery, dating from 1599, gives name to the Capuzinerberg. The oldest nunnery is that founded on the Nonnberg by St Rupert in 585. The single Protestant church in Salzburg was not built until 1865.

A theological seminary is the only relic now left of the univer-sity of Salzburg, founded in 1623 and suppressed in 1810. A con-siderable number of other educational institutions, lay and clerical, have their seat in the town. The public library contains 62,000 volumes and a collection of MSS., and the museum library contains 10,000 volumes. The number of benevolent and charitable institutions is large. Salzburg carries on a variety of small manufactures, including musical instruments, iron-wares, marble ornaments, cement, artificial wool, &c. Its trade has become more important since direct railway communication has been opened with Munich and Vienna. A large number of tourists visit Salzburg annually; and its baths also attract many visitors. It is the seat of important judicial and administrative departments, and also of an archbishop, with a cathedral chapter and a consistory. In 1880 the population (including the suburbs) was 20,336.

The origin and development of Salzburg were alike ecclesiastical, and its history is involved with that of the archbishopric to which it gave its name. The old Roman town of Juvavum was laid in ruins, and the incipient Christianity of the district overwhelmed, by the pagan Goths and Huns. The nucleus of the present city was the monastery and bishopric founded here about 700 (some say about 582) by St Rupert of Worms, who had been invited by Duke Theodo of Bavaria to preach Christianity in his land. The modern name of the town, due like several others in the district to the abundance of salt found there, appears before the end of the 8th century. When Charlemagne took possession of Bavaria in 798 he made Bishop Arno of Salzburg an archbishop. Thenceforward the dignity and power of the see steadily increased. Before the end of the 11th century Arno's successors had been named primates of Germany and perpetual papal legates ; in the course of time they obtained high secular honours also; and in 1278 Rudolph of Hapsburg made the archbishops imperial princes. The able and ambitious line of prince archbishops, chosen from the noblest families of Germany, eagerly enlarged their possessions by purchase, exchange, and gift, and did not hesitate to come into warlike collision with the rulers of Bavaria and Austria, or even with the emperor himself. They took an active share in the affairs of the empire, and held an influential position in the electoral college. As a constituent of the German empire, Salzburg embraced an area of 3700 square miles, with a population of 250,000. The last independent archbishop was Hieronymus, count of Colleredo, elected in 1772, who ruled with energy and justice but without popularity. The see was secularized by the peace of Luneville in 1802.

The strife between lord and people had always been keen in Salzburg ; and in 1511 the archbishop, Leonhard, was besieged in Hohen-Salzburg by the inhabitants. The Peasants' War also raged within the see. From the beginning an orthodox stronghold of the Roman Catholic faith, Salzburg expelled the Jews in 1498, and energetically opposed the Protestant Reformation. Under Wolfgang Dietrich many Protestant citizens were driven from the town and their houses demolished. In spite, however, of rigorous persecution the new faith spread in secret, especially among the landward subjects of the archbishop, and a new and more searching edict of expulsion was issued by Arch-bishop Von Firmian in 1727. The Protestants invoked the aid of Frederick William I. of Prussia, who procured for them permission to sell their goods and to emigrate ; and in 1731 and 1732 Salzburg parted to Prussia with about 30,000 industrious and peaceful citizens. About 6000 of these came from the capital.

By the peace of Luneville Salzburg was given to the archduke of Austria and grand-duke of Tuscany in exchange for Tuseany ; and its new owner was enrolled among the electoral princes. In the re-distribution following the peace of Pressburg in 1805, Salzburg fell to Austria. Four years later it passed to Bavaria, but the peace of Paris in 1814 restored it to Austria, to which it has since belonged. Under the designation of a duchy the territory formed the depart-ment of Salzach in Upper Austria until 1849, when it was made a separate crown-land, with the four departments of Salzburg, Zell, Tamsweg, and St Johann. In 1861 the management of its affairs was entrusted to a local diet, consisting of the governor, the arch-bishop, and twenty-five representatives. The area of the duchy is 2762 square miles and the population in 1880 was 163,570, almost exclusively Roman Catholic and of German stock. (F. MU.)

The above article was written by: Findlay Muirhead, M.A.

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