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Home » Articles » Destinations » Europe » Vienna Before Sunrise
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Vienna Before Sunrise
Submitted by duncanjdsmith on 2007-08-03 05:10:44 (via www.duncanjdsmith.com)
How watching a romantic film for the under thirties helped forty-something travel writer Duncan J. D. Smith discover some of the Austrian capital's hidden places.
4  votes
Submit Your Vote   |   Add Comment      16 comments   |   Topic: Austria  
 
Submitted by roxy on 2007-08-06 04:57:21
I really never thought a film could ever capture so much of a city's pulse. do they still bury suicides in that 'cemetery of the nameless'? it must be frightening to visit it..
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Submitted by Anonymous on 2007-08-06 12:23:10
It's a charming little cemetery and not ghoulish at all, except possibly in the winter when the landscape is stark and grey. If you visit in the summer you can visit the cosy local tavern nearby. Suicides are no longer buried here, in fact I didn't see any new graves during my last visit. Glad you liked the article.
Submitted by roxy on 2007-08-07 01:24:38
I get it... Anyway, was it popular among tourists before being a setting for that film?
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Submitted by Anonymous on 2007-08-07 02:50:17
No, not really. It's a long way off the usual tourist routes. The only regular visitors were locals who tended the graves voluntarily. And each year a wreath is cast into the Danube here in memory of all the lost and forgotten souls drowned in the river.
Submitted by roxy on 2007-08-07 03:28:02
oh, that's touchy. I know that in some countries, the religion does not accept to pray for the suicides, because suicide is considered a great sin. The priests don't even officiate the funerals, which is sad
Is that section of Danube infamous even now for suicide attempts or people have already figured out other ways to end their lives?
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Submitted by Anonymous on 2007-08-07 05:13:14
Since the nearby grain harbour was rebuilt the river current has changed. In the old days bodies were washed up on the river bank immediately in front of the cemetery, hence its location here. That has now changed, and any suicides would be carried away downstream, possibly as far as Budapest and beyond.
Submitted by roxy on 2007-08-08 03:31:40
oh, thank you.. that's quite logical..
the suicides get a free cruise on the Danube in their last minutes, joking
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Submitted by pablo on 2007-08-08 03:33:27
I also liked the article
and the photo of Zollamtssteg Bridge draw my attention in particular... this is really an attractive idea to have a multi functional bridge. Is it old?
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Submitted by Anonymous on 2007-08-09 13:29:24
Yes,the bridge is a special one. It has a footpath on the top, a railway beneath, and the river below that. it was built in the early 1900s, at the same time as the railway and the straightening of the river, by the Art Nouveau architect Otto Wagner. All his bridghes, railings, and other features are painted a distinctive green colour, to look like tarnished copper.
Submitted by pablo on 2007-08-10 03:24:35
tarnished copper - that's curious. Was it his special preference to paint them like that or he wanted to get a distinctive effect by doing it?
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Submitted by Anonymous on 2007-08-10 05:48:47
A distinctive effect I suspect, like the Metro stations in Paris that he was trying to imitate.
Submitted by pablo on 2007-08-13 05:01:21
so, what one can mainly see in Vienna from Wagner's work is bridges and railways? I mean, did he specialize on these or did he also get involved in the construction of edifices?
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Submitted by Anonymous on 2007-08-13 07:44:15
Wagner also designed villas, public buildings, and the occasional church too. For me, however, Vienna's Metropolitan Railway (Stadtbahn), today part of the U-Bahn, is Wagner's most distinctive contribution to the city's urban landscape.
Submitted by pablo on 2007-08-13 09:50:26
I can imagine that since that brige really looks remarkable.
sorry for such a barrage of questions, but did Wagner design for other locations except Vienna?
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Submitted by Anonymous on 2007-08-14 06:18:02
No problem. I am flattered that you are so interested. So far as I know, Wagner's only work outside Vienna was the Rumbach Synagogue in Budapest. I visited it last year whilst writing a book on the city ("Only in Budapest") but was saddened to see that it has been boarded up and abandoned since the end of WWII. I think there are plans afoot to restore it.
Submitted by pablo on 2007-08-16 03:23:25
oh, it's always sad when you see dilapidated works of high-value architecture. Maybe that just happens because Wagner is not that well-known outside Austria. Is he at least paid tribute to in Vienna?
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