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Vienna, the old capital of Austria-Hungary and the Habsburgs

Posted by on October 31, 2018

This city is vastly different from Salzburg, the other Austrian city that I went to as Vienna (known as “Wien” in German; pronunciation is “vee-in”) was the seat of power during the Austria-Hungary Empire days. It was a large empire that rivaled other countries such as England, France, and Spain during its heyday. The Empire almost became a part of the German Confederation but disagreements between the Habsburgs (the monarchs of Austria-Hungary who wanted to be the royal rulers of all German-speaking peoples) and the Prussians (the most powerful German state who wanted power shared equally or at least, them in charge) prevented such an union. It was only during the Nazi Germany days under Adolf Hitler who able to finally unite all German-speaking peoples under one country, for the short time they were ruled over. Nevertheless, Vienna is always one of those cities that appears on a lot of European traveler’s bucket list and there is a good reason why in this elaborate city of combining the old and new.

catholic church cathedral dom catedral catolico religion

This here is St. Stepehn’s Cathedral. The odd thing about Austria which also explained their non-inclusion into a German-speaking confederation was their religion was Catholic in contrast to most Germans being Protestant.


museum palais palace palacio Hapsburg family family Familie dynasty kings queens emperor royalty european

This is the Hofburg, which back in the day used to be the Palace of the Habsburg dynasty where they ruled over the Austria-Hungary Empire. Today, it is a museum.

entrada hofburg vienna wien austria osterreich

The entrance of the Hofburg. If you get there early enough, you can avoid the crowds.

Emperor of Austria, King of Hungary, Bohemia, Dalmatia, and Croatia

The Hofburg had an inside courtyard which showcased a sculpture of the Kaiser Franz I, the longest reigning Emperor of Austria and King of Hungary. He had the unfortunate decision to make of sending troops to Serbia after the death of his son, Archduke Franz Ferdinand, and his wife. That hard decision to make by the Kaiser became the beginning of World War I and the eventual separation into separate countries of Austria, Hungary, Czechia, etc.

Neue Burg front

This is known as Neue Burg which is still part of Hofburg. Just another section of it.

gold silver expensive silverware serving food servir comida oro plata metales ricos

Inside the Hofburg, there is a museum dedicated to the old Austrian Empire and its royal family. There are so many pieces of silverware and other relics in there. This here is some gold silverware that would be used during a state ceremony or dinner for foreign delegates.

There is one place that most tourists do not go to which is Professor Sigmund Freud’s old office/home. The famous psychologist lived in Vienna during the old Austria-Hungary Empire and had a lot of famous work, sayings, and philosophies, which some probably even influenced Karl Marx on his works on communism. However, when the Nazis took over Austria, a lot of Freud’s books were burned and censored which resulted in Freud taking asylum in England (just like Marx) until his death there. I’m not sure if it’s really worth going to this location as most of his original work was probably burnt by the Nazis after Freud fled the country since he was Jewish and did not want to find himself targeted for possible assassination or get sent to a concentration camp like Dachau.

name plate sign Freud Sigismund Schlomo Freud Austrian psychologist neurologist and the founder of psychoanalysis

Freud lived in a quaint building among other buildings which you would have no idea that he lived and practiced there. It appeared that he lived a simple life which probably helped in his ability to conduct further research on dreams, unconscious mind, ID, Ego, religion, and the famous theory of the Oedipus complex.

sigmund freud father of psychoanalysis osterreich

Most of his home is emptied due to the ransacking by Nazi officials and probably the Gestapo who burnt most or all of his work at that location. But it is likely that the good professor met his patients in that room.

Luckily, most Austrians speak English but some of them, however, cannot speak any at all and it’s all German only. But take note that the German language spoken here in Austria can be a little odd at times, a bit different from the High German spoke in Germany, and I have had problems communicating with the locals. Sometimes you might need them to standardize their German so they can understand your German which they can because they understand the German idioms and quirks in Germany. However, the reverse cannot be said when Austrians are speaking in their own terms and phrases and the Germans cannot understand them. It’s like the Irish, Scottish, and English understanding Americans but not the other way around.

Kaffee Osterreich austria austriaco cafe café black liquid gold caffeine caffeina

Before you leave, make sure you pick up some Wiener Coffee. It’s pronounced “Vein-er” not wiener.

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