St. Michael's Church, Vienna

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The outside of St. Michael's Church

St. Michael's Church (German: Michaelerkirche) is a church in Vienna, Austria. It is a Roman Catholic church and is one of the oldest churches in the city. The church is named after Saint Michael, an important angel for Roman Catholics. It was built between 1220 and 1240 in the Romanesque style.

Many changes have been made to the church over the years, both inside and outside. The steeple was added in the 16th century. The church's facade (the outside front of the building) was changed to a neo-classical style in 1792. The facade has not changed since then. There is a large statue of St. Michael on top of the front door of the church. Inside the church, the altarpiece has a large sculpture by Lorenzo Mattielli (1688 – 1748). The sculpture shows Saint Michael sending the bad angels out of Heaven. Below the sculpture, there are statues of two angels holding a picture of the Virgin Mary.[1][2]

This church is very near to the Hofburg Palace, the palace of the Holy Roman Emperors. St. Michael's was the parish church of the Emperors and their families. Many famous people are buried in the church. One of them is the Italian poet, Pietro Metastasio. The church has a very large pipe organ. Parts of the organ are covered with gilt (thin sheets of gold). The famous composer, Joseph Haydn, played this organ when he was a very young man. In 1791, parts of Mozart's Requiem (music set to the words of the Requiem Mass) were performed for the very first time in St. Michael's Church. They were performed in memory of Mozart by the singers and musicians who worked with him in Vienna.[3]

References[change | change source]

  1. Posch, Waldemar (in German), St. Michael in Wien (Geschichte), archived from the original on 2007-09-27, http://web.archive.org/web/20070927194430/http://www.michaelerkirche.at/sankt_michael_wien_waldemar_posch.htm, retrieved 2007-11-11
  2. McNamee, Dardis (2011). Frommer's Austria. John Wiley & Sons
  3. Abert, Hermann (2007). W. A. Mozart (edited and annotated by Cliff Eisen), p. 310. Yale University Press

Other websites[change | change source]

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