Styrian Armoury

Graz, Austria

The Styrian Armoury (Landeszeughaus) is the world's largest historic armoury and attracts visitors from all over the world. It holds approximately 32,000 pieces of weaponry, tools, suits of armour for battle and ones for parades.

Between the 15th century and the 18th century, Styria was on the front line of almost continuous conflict with the Ottoman Empire and with rebels in Hungary. In order to defend itself it needed troops and these troops needed equipment. The Styrian Armoury results from the resulting need to store large quantities of armour and weapons, and was built from 1642 - 1645 by a Tyrolean architect called Antonio Solar.

After about 100 years in use, Austrian empress Maria Theresia wanted to close down the armoury, as part of her centralisation of the defence of Austria. Nevertheless Styria petitioned for the ongoing existence of the armoury for both practical and sentimental reasons. Their petition was accepted and the Armoury was left intact, but largely decommissioned.

References:

Comments

Your name



Address

Herrengasse 20a, Graz, Austria
See all sites in Graz

Details


Category: Museums in Austria

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

Rating

4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Tim Biggs (2 years ago)
This is the armoury in Graz, and holds a wonderful selection of 15th to 18th century weapons and armour. What is initially suprising is that it is truely an armoury- you might have a rack of 50 pistols, and then a wall of halberds, instead of the one of this, one of that, you might see in a museum. However, this certainly does not detract from the experience. The collection includes everything from huge two handed swords (Zweihänder), to incredibly ornate pistols (well worth checking out), to cannons, to a full suit of horse armour, to firearms that looked like rifles but were so large they were operated by a team of people and needed a stand. The whole armoury has relativley subdued lighting to preserve the collection. There are short guides in a range of languages and audio guides (sadly I did not have chance to make use of this as I only had an hour before closing- but certainly better than not seeing it at all!). I would have appreciated more notes/signs as a large amount of the collection is just there without information. If you are in Graz and want to see something a little different this is well worth it. Other practical things: there are toilets and a lift, plus quite a large shop
K R (2 years ago)
If I could use only one word to describe this place it would be - awesome! There are thousands of various pieces of armor, weaponry and other military artifacts to admire, a dream come true for any history buff. We even got to see the famous horse armor (the guide kindly asked us to keep our pictures for private use, so I'll respect their request, but there are plenty of pictures of it online). Armory is accessible only via guided tour, but it's well worth the admission fee (12 EUR for adults).
andrei radulescu (2 years ago)
Biggest standing armory in the world. Nice place to see
Gilbert Fruhwirth (2 years ago)
Absolutely unique collection of war equipment from the middle ages! There is nothing comparable worldwide! A must-see for every tourist visiting Austria. Easy to reach in the city centre of Graz. Guides available, Audio-Guides, too. Museum shop available. Wheel-chair and push-chair accessible.
ugnius ugnisu (3 years ago)
Amazing place. Come in summer or spring though. Learned a new German expression - "I smell the match"
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Heraclea Lyncestis

Heraclea Lyncestis was an ancient Greek city in Macedon, ruled later by the Romans. It was founded by Philip II of Macedon in the middle of the 4th century BC. The city was named in honor of the mythological hero Heracles. The name Lynkestis originates from the name of the ancient kingdom, conquered by Philip, where the city was built.

Heraclea was a strategically important town during the Hellenistic period, as it was at the edge of Macedon"s border with Epirus to the west and Paeonia to the north, until the middle of the 2nd century BC, when the Romans conquered Macedon and destroyed its political power. The main Roman road in the area, Via Egnatia went through Heraclea, and Heraclea was an important stop. The prosperity of the city was maintained mainly due to this road.

The Roman emperor Hadrian built a theatre in the center of the town, on a hill, when many buildings in the Roman province of Macedonia were being restored. It began being used during the reign of Antoninus Pius. Inside the theatre there were three animal cages and in the western part a tunnel. The theatre went out of use during the late 4th century AD, when gladiator fights in the Roman Empire were banned, due to the spread of Christianity, the formulation of the Eastern Roman Empire, and the abandonment of, what was then perceived as, pagan rituals and entertainment.

Late Antiquity and Byzantine periods

In the early Byzantine period (4th to 6th centuries AD) Heraclea was an important episcopal centre. A small and a great basilica, the bishop"s residence, and a funerary basilica and the necropolis are some of the remains of this period. Three naves in the Great Basilica are covered with mosaics of very rich floral and figurative iconography; these well preserved mosaics are often regarded as fine examples of the early Christian art period.

The city was sacked by Ostrogoth/Visigoth forces, commanded by Theodoric the Great in 472 AD and again in 479 AD. It was restored in the late 5th and early 6th century. When an earthquake struck in 518 AD, the inhabitants of Heraclea gradually abandoned the city. Subsequently, at the eve of the 7th century, the Dragovites, a Slavic tribe pushed down from the north by the Avars, settled in the area. The last coin issue dates from ca. 585, which suggests that the city was finally captured by the Slavs. As result, in place of the deserted city theatre several huts were built.

The Episcopacy Residence was excavated between 1970 and 1975. The western part was discovered first and the southern side is near the town wall. The luxury rooms are located in the eastern part. The 2nd, 3rd and 4th rooms all have mosaic floors. Between the 3rd and 4th rooms there is a hole that led to the eastern entrance of the residence. The hole was purposefully created between the 4th and 6th century.