The History of the Vienna Hofburg
The Hofburg is the former imperial residence in Vienna. The Hofburg building complex was built between the 13th and the 19th centuries. Six centuries of construction have strongly shaped the building’s appearance. The different wings of the former imperial residence portray the architectural periods of Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque up to Classicism and the Wilhelmine era. Until 1918 the Hofburg Palace was the seat of the Hapsburg dynasty. Almost every ruler had parts added or altered or redesigned and decorated for his family and himself.
A smaller hall leads to the grand Festival Hall, which was erected under Emperor Franz Joseph I in 1908 and completed only in 1923. The impressive ceiling frescos by the painter Schramm display Emperor Franz Josef I’s device: “Viribus Unitis” (Latin, “with united forces”) and the reigning power, Austria.. The center image shows Austria surrounded by allegoric depictions of religion, justice, bravery, science, art, and agriculture. The 15 lunettes by Veith show significant rulers of the Hapsburg dynasty. Other octagon sections by the painter Stauffer include images of Commander Charles of Lorraine (Karl v. Lothringen), John Sobieski – King of Poland, Commander Prince Eugene of Savoy, State Chancellor Prince Kaunitz, and Prince Metternich.