Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Funeral Cortege Of Archduke Ferdinand

The only public funeral procession for Archduke Franz Ferdinand occurred in Sarajevo, the city in which he was assassinated. The procession occurred the day after his death.

Archduke Ferdinand and his wife, Sophie, were killed on June 28, 1914.

The remains of Ferdinand and Sophie were embalmed that same night in Sarajevo. The remains were to lie in state in Sarajevo’s town hall the following day.

The photograph above captures the funeral cortege either as it makes its way to the Sarajevo town hall on the morning of June 29, or as it makes its way from the Sarajevo town hall to the Sarajevo train station late on the afternoon of June 29.

No funeral procession was permitted in Vienna. The remains of Ferdinand and Sophie were deliberately scheduled to arrive in Vienna late at night on July 2 in order to avoid the prospect of a public procession—and the remains were deliberately scheduled to depart Vienna late at night on July 3 for the very same reason.

The remains of Ferdinand and Sophie were in Vienna fewer than 24 hours.

On the morning of July 3, the remains of Ferdinand were to lie in state for four hours—and not one minute more.

On the afternoon of July 3, a fifteen-minute private funeral was held. Dignitaries, foreign and domestic, were actively discouraged from attending the funeral, with the result that none were present.

Emperor Franz Joseph did not attend his nephew’s funeral; Kaiser Wilhelm did not attend the funeral, either.

From Vienna, the remains of Ferdinand and Sophie were transported by milk train and boat to the small Austrian village of Pochlarn, the village nearest Artstetten, Ferdinand’s castle, where Ferdinand and Sophie were to find their final resting places. No funeral procession was conducted in Pochlarn, as the remains had been deliberately scheduled to arrive after midnight.

Simple hearses were used to transport Ferdinand and Sophie from Pochlarn to Artstetten.

The couple was laid to rest at 2:00 a.m. on July 4.

When the public, days later, learned of the deliberate disrespect shown to the heir to the Habsburg throne, there was a vast outcry.

The outcry was short-lived.

It was drowned out by talk of war.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Vienna State Opera: An Artist’s Rendition

Another view of the Wiener Staatsoper—the front façade, on Vienna’s Ring—may be seen in this clumsy watercolor from the early 1900s.

The artist: the man responsible for the building’s destruction nearly half a century later.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Frightfully Busy

Andrew and I have been frightfully busy these last many weeks. I do not think we have ever been so busy.

Andrew is busy wrapping things up at work. I am busy wrapping things up at school. We are both busy preparing for our move back to Minneapolis. We are both busy helping everyone make travel plans for my graduation (assuming I don’t flunk out at the last minute). I am busy completing preliminary bar exam submissions.

Everything is hitting us at once. We are on the verge of being overwhelmed.

After convincing ourselves for more than two years that we have been happy in our tiny apartment—and we HAVE been happy, but not because of the apartment—and that we were thriving in cozy living quarters, we are both looking forward to an escape from low ceilings and a single window. A return to spacious living quarters will be welcome.

We haven’t a clue where we shall live once we return to Minnesota. We cannot worry about that until we are back home. For the first few weeks, we shall have to live with Andrew’s parents—if they can stand us.

If not, they can shove us off on an assortment of relatives.

Friday, March 11, 2011

The Vienna State Opera, May 1945

The rear of the Wiener Staatsoper in May 1945, only days after the end of World War II.