Kilian, the Apostle of Franconia, brought the Christian religion to the Main valley in the 7th century. He was an Irish monk who travelled with some companions to work as missionaries in pagan Germany. He converted and baptized the Franconian Duke, but the Duke’s wife became his worst enemy. Together with his companions Kolonat and Totnan, Kilian was slain by hired killers in his chapel during prayer.
The location of their martyrdom is said to be the spot where Neumünster church is now standing. The crypt of the church holds the shrine with the mortal remains of the three martyrs. Kilian, the first Bishop of Würzburg, is the most worshipped local saint, his holiday is July 8. The first name is still common here. At university in Marburg I met a guy my age who was named Kilian – guess where he was from.
Kilian is omnipresent in Würzburg. Statues of the saint can be found in many places. The most famous one is in the middle of the old bridge: Kilian in a bishop’s ornate, holding the golden sword, and his two companions by his side. The fortress Marienberg has a statue in the main gate, too. A modern Kilian statue is overlooking the city from Schlossberg vineyard.
Fondest memory: The most beautiful images of Kilian, Kolonat and Totnan, though, are the three woodcarved sculptures by Tilman Riemenschneider in Neumünster church (now copies).
Neither "favourite thing" nor "fondest memory"... wish VT got rid of those headlines!
Once upon a time Würzburg’s centre was one of the most beautiful baroque towns in Central Europe. It has been smashed to pieces within 20 minutes during the air raid of March 16, 1945 – 7 weeks before the end of World War II. 90% of the inner town were destroyed.
A monument next to the Old Crane recalls and honours the efforts to clear the rubble after the end of the war. It consists of a steel lorry on rails, the kind that was used by the “rubble trains” which transported the rubble to the river bank where it was loaded on ships and transported away.
The rebuilding after the war was done in a conservative way, sticking to the old structures and the pre-war ground plan of the town. The important historical monuments were repaired or reconstructed, some in their original shapes, some with modern additions. The churches, for example, tell their history: Facades are reconstructed but interior and furniture reveal modern elements.
A closer look at what seem to be baroque houses shows details that betray the post-war replicas: simplified facades, plain rectangular windows, an extra floor squeezed in under the roof, and so on.
The houses in between, however, are all post-war. Some interesting examples of 1950’s architecture can be found among them, like the ensemble of Mozartschule (which is currently empty and in high danger of being demolished to make room for another faceless shopping mall).
Despite all that the city has regained a pleasant appearance. This is not one of those many ugly post-war cities with nothing but functionalist concrete boxes.
Favorite thing: If you want to listen to an English-language broadcast on the radio (FM), programming from the US military radio can be found on 104.9 Mhz. It carries various programmings from US, both liberal & conservative views.
By far the most amusing thing about Wurzburg is its understanding of the 'Facts of Life'. According to the church here, God fertilised the 'virgin' Mary using a verrrry long tube from heaven to ....her left ear!!! And the proof is in a sculpture above one of the doors of the Marienkapelle, on the Marienplatz. There must have been some very confused Wurzburgers during the 1500's.
So, if you are having problems conceiving a baby, maybe you need to first clean the wax from your ears!
Location: Above North door of the Marienkapelle, Marien Platz (around the corner from Tourist Information Office)
Favorite thing: The Cathedral of St. Kilian is one of the largest Romanesque churches in Germany. Begun in 1040 it has undergone reconstruction over the centuries right up to the 1960s. The Cathedral is filled with frescoes, stained glass, and the tombs of the prince bishops. Head down into the crypt to add a little thrill to the tour.
Momma told me to never stare. As a kid I had a tendancy to do so, differences grabbed and held onto all my attention. I was attracted to differences and picked apart things common and different. At two years old, words were gaining meanings, I pointed at a rather round man and said, "FAT". Embarassing the parents I just giggled with a smile scattering across my face one couldn't get angered at. My people staring hasn't quelled all that much, these days I still stare, I still glimpse, only now I solidify the stare with film.
This man had a perculiar look as he gorged the Ice Cream cone. I took him home in the 2-D.
Favorite thing: Its a known fact that German Engineering is the utmost when it comes to quality. Beyond the fact that the machinery will hold up to the test of time, aesthetic value is still topping the list of design importance. Take for example this Crane, these black circles are totally unnecessary to function but yet left intact for the final product purely for visual stimulation. It works well!
The Marienfestung (Mary Fortress) stands high above the town. It is a great castle. A pity that I didn?t go up ... I have to do this next time.
Please feel free and enlarge the picture to see more details of it ......
Fondest memory: Please visit the pages of other VT-members to see more of this wonderful castle!
Würzburg is a very unique and great baroque town located in the northern part of Bavaria.
Fondest memory: Due to heavy bombings of the allied armies in World War II., W?rzburg was heavily destroyed. But there are still some wonderful buildings in the old town centre, like this beautiful church. Just go around and look ... and don't forget your camera ...
The Residenz in Würzburg is one of Germany's most impressive palaces. Surrounded by a beautiful garden. Something you may not expect in a small town like Würzburg, but this palace can keep up with the big ones in Europe.
The highlight of any visit to this town.
Favorite thing: After having a look at the Marienkappelle, it were just a few metres to the Alte Mainbrücke (Old Bridge) which is adorned with the well-known statues of saints. You can see the Fortress from here.
Favorite thing: Marienkapelle is a late Gothic chapel completed about 1481 and was our next stop while strolling through the town. It's located at the market place. It has rich ornamental sculptures, tombstones of Franconian knights and townsmen ...
Favorite thing: The old fortress guarding Würzburg is in excellant repair and worth an afternoon's visit. For those with tired legs, the castle is accessible by auto or bus. However, I found the walk up the hill through the vineyards past the old stone statues to be half the fun.
Favorite thing: Würzburg was ruled by the iron-fisted Prince-Bishops. These guys may have been tough, but they were also bishops, therefore, they demanded ample houses of worship. I found the cathedral and the other churches to be amazing places: from the far flung vaulted ceilings in the cathedral, to the baroque design of the Neumunster Church, to the creepy relics housed in subterranean recesses, to the delightful Marienkirche within the castle walls. Go see them all.
Favorite thing: The Residenz is a beautiful Palace. It was built during the Renasiance, so it has beautiful painted ceilings, long flowing staircases, and magnificient halls. They don't allow picture taking inside so if you want pictures of the interior they have them at the gift shop.