Mariazell in Styria

Friday, 14 August 2020 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General

Mariazell Basilica © Bwag/cc-by-sa-3.0-at

Mariazell Basilica © Bwag/cc-by-sa-3.0-at

Mariazell is an Austrian city located in the southeastern state of Styria. Well known for being a hub of winter sports, 143 kilometres (89 miles) north of Graz. It is picturesquely situated in the valley of the Salza, amid the north Styrian Alps. It is a site of pilgrimage for Catholics from Austria and neighboring countries to the east. The object of veneration is an image of the Virgin Mary reputed to work miracles, carved in lime-tree wood. This was brought to the place in 1157, and is now enshrined in a chapel adorned with objects of silver and other costly materials. The large church of which the chapel forms part was erected in 1644 as an expansion of a smaller church built by Louis I, King of Hungary, after a victory over the Ottoman Empire in 1363.

Most notable about the Mariazell Basilica, built in the 14th and 15th centuries but with a superb baroque interior, are the three towers on its western front. The church houses the Magna Mater Austriae (“Great Mother of Austria”) in its so-called Gnadenkapelle (“Grace Chapel”). The holy image is a small wooden Marian statue from the 13th century, which is clothed in a splendid garment and plays a great role in the popular devotions of many Austrian Catholics.

© Herbert Ortner/cc-by-3.0 © Wolfgang Glock/cc-by-2.0-at © Bwag/cc-by-sa-3.0 Mariazell Basilica © Bwag/cc-by-sa-3.0-at Gnadenkapelle © Papiermond/cc-by-sa-3.0 Gothic Portal of Mariazell Basilica © Bwag/cc-by-sa-3.0-at
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Gothic Portal of Mariazell Basilica © Bwag/cc-by-sa-3.0-at
Mariazell lies on the highway B 20, which goes from Sankt Pölten over the Seebergsattel to Kapfenberg im Mürz Valley. There is a connection through the Salza Valley to the east either over the Gscheid to St. Aegyd am Neuwalde, into the Piesting Valley und then further into the Viennese Basin (B 21) or over the Lahnsattel into the Mürz Valley and onward to Mürzzuschlag (B 23).

Mariazell is also the southern endpoint of the Mariazell railway line, a narrow gauge electric railway from Sankt Pölten. However the terminus of the line at Mariazell station lies around 1 km (0.6 mi) north of the city center in the municipal territory of Sankt Sebastian. The station is also the terminus of the Museumstramway Mariazell-Erlaufsee, a standard gauge heritage steam tramway that operates to the nearby Erlaufsee. Mariazell Airport is a private use airport that is located 2 kilometres (1 mi) north-northwest of Mariazell.

Read more on Mariazell, Mariazell Basilica, mariazell-info.at and Wikipedia Mariazell (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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