Peterskirche, Saint Peter’s Baroque church in Vienna

by Victor Grigore, Webphoto.ro

This is the firs church in Vienna, or to be more exact, Peterskirche is built on the spot of the oldest church, that existed in 400 AD. Back then, Vienna was still part of the Roman empire, and it was less than a century since emperor Constantine allowed the Christian faith. The modest parish church passed the main architectural styles for this type of building, from Romanesque to Gothic. But it was the fashionable Baroque style that survived to our days, through a much larger 18 century construction by architect Lukas von Hildebrandt.

The church is crammed between two other historic buildings in St Peter Platz, so it’s impossible to get a frame from a decent distance, that would do justice to the proportions of this green domed basilica. It is a turreted dome, which means is seated on top of intermediary walls that enhance its size. In the round opening in the middle of this oval dome is painted a dove, the symbol of the Holy Ghost, because the church is dedicated to the Holy Trinity and belongs to a brotherhood with the same name. Around this opening there is a fresco by Johann Michael Rottmayr, depicting the Kingdom of Heaven with the crowning of Marry. The painting of this dome alone took two years. The engineering project for this dome belonged to Matthias Steinl.

Some of the Baroque statues and decorations are of great importance. Very impressive is the golden statuary group presenting the martyrdom of saint Johannes Nepomuk. The Czech saint is beaten with clubs, while holding up the crucifix. Next to him is a Baroque gilded pulpit, one of the most heavily decorated elements of this sort in the world.
Great historic figures are connected to this sanctuary. The contribution of Charlemagne to a previous building is in the realm of legend, but the event is marked by an exterior bass-relief. Another emperor, Leopold, is present through an imposing coat of arms of Austria, the double-headed vulture, with his motto: Consilio et industria (Prudence and diligence).

Mai multe despre: Austria, Religious architecture
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