Things you didn’t know about the Vienna Cathedral

Vienna Cathedral occupies a prominent place in the center of the Austrian capital. It is a simply fascinating building. And not only for its artistic beauty, since to the beauty of the construction we must add the many sculptural, pictorial or goldsmith jewels that it houses. In addition, this temple hides many secrets that make your visit much more recommendable.

A little history about the vienna cathedral

Vienna Cathedral – Zdravko Ciric

Construction of St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna began in the 14th century.on the remains of other earlier temples.

Nevertheless, It has been a building to which reforms have been added over the centuries, so you can admire in it the evolution of the Austrian arts. Both on the outside, dominated by the colored roof, the great spire and the two towers; as in its interior with three naves and full of chapels on the sides.


“Every great architect is necessarily a great poet. He must be an original interpreter of his time, his days, his age.”

-Frank Lloyd Wright-

The oldest of the Vienna Cathedral

Main facade – RossHelen

We have already said at the beginning that the current Viennese cathedral replaced an earlier temple, although there are parts of the building that remind us of its Romanesque origins.

those parts are the bases of the so-called Torres de los Paganos, located on the main façade, which frame what is known as the Gate of the Giants. By the way, it is not the only door, also to the right of the church is the Puerta de los Cantores, through which in the past women could not pass.

The great spire of the Vienna cathedral

Cathedral spire by Maria Golovianko

It is clear that the two bell towers on the main façade draw the attention, but there is another highly attractive vertical element. It is the great Gothic spire that rises above the transept of the temple. How tall is that building? Well, the not inconsiderable height of 137 meters. By the way, it is possible to go up to a viewpoint in its upper part, and thus contemplate Vienna from above.

And of course From there you can also see the particular and colorful roof of the Vienna Cathedral in all its splendor. It is a striking roof composed of approximately a quarter of a million colored tiles that today look magnificent, although during World War II they suffered much damage.

We entered the St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna

A whole treatise on the history of art is what is contemplated within. A unique setting that has been the place where some of the most lavish ceremonies in Austrian history have been held. And as if that were not enough, the Vienna Cathedral itself is a great cemetery, since the remains of many of the members of the Habsburg dynasty rest here.

Vienna Cathedral – Patrick Wang

But once one is dwarfed by the whole, We are going to name several elements that deserve attention during the visit.

1. The Pummerin Bell

The story is mythical that this bell in the north tower it was made from the cast bronze of cannons that the Turks abandoned in their flight from the city in 1683. However, it had to be recast after 1945, when the bell fell and broke, so they had to redo it.

2. Pilgram’s Pulpit

Pilgram Pulpit – Jim.kovic/

Of the innumerable artistic jewels that are discovered inside the Vienna Cathedral, there is one that deserves to appear in any Art History manual. It is the pulpit that the sculptor Pilgram carved at the beginning of the 16th century, one of the best examples of Flamboyant Gothic sculpture.

3. The chapel of Tirna

In this chapel a crucified Christ can be seen next to the tomb of Eugene of Savoy. Visit it and take a good look at the face of Jesus. It is said that the beard is real hair, and not only that, it is said that it grows continuously.

4. The Catacombs

And we end this tour of the Vienna Cathedral talking about its entrails, literally. Some catacombs dating from the 18th centurywhere archaeologists have found an enormous number of bones, so much so that they are supposed to correspond to approximately 10,000 people.

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