St. Martin's Cathedral in Eisenstadt was first mentioned 1264. From this chapel there are still remains of a Romanesque foundation in the area of the present choir. In the 13th century the chapel was extended by the addition of an early Gothic choir. In the 14th century a chapel for lay people was added. In 1460 the church was rebuilt under the town captain Johann Siebenhirter as a fortified or defensive church, as an attack by the Turks was expected after the Fall of Constantinople in 1453. The Gothic building was finished in 1522. After the great fire of 1589 almost 30 years passed before construction of the severely damaged church took place, between 1610 and 1629.
In 1777 a large altarpiece by Stefan Dorffmeister was added, depicting 'The Transfiguration of St. Martin'. In the following year the Viennese organ builder Malleck installed an organ to instructions from Joseph Haydn.
After the creation of the Diocese of Eisenstadt, St. Martin's Church was elevated to the rank of cathedral in 1960. Saint Martin became the patron saint of the diocese and the Land. Under Bishop Stephan László in 1960 the interior and windows were renewed.
The cathedral is famous for its church music. Concerts of the annual Haydn Festival also take place here.References:
Augustusburg Palace represents one of the first examples of Rococo creations in Germany. For the Cologne elector and archbishop Clemens August of the House of Wittelsbach it was the favourite residence. In 1725 the Westphalian architect Johann Conrad Schlaun was commissioned by Clemens August to begin the construction of the palace on the ruins of a medieval moated castle.
In 1728, the Bavarian court architect François de Cuvilliés took over and made the palace into one of the most glorious residences of its time. Until its completion in 1768, numerous outstanding artists of European renown contributed to its beauty. A prime example of the calibre of artists employed here is Balthasar Neumann, who created the design for the magnificent staircase, an enchanting creation full of dynamism and elegance. The magical interplay of architecture, sculpture, painting and garden design made the Brühl Palaces a masterpiece of German Rococo.
UNESCO honoured history and present of the Rococo Palaces by inscribing Augustusburg Palace – together with Falkenlust Palace and their extensive gardens – on the World Heritage List in 1984. From 1949 onwards, Augustusburg Palace was used for representative purposes by the German Federal President and the Federal Government for many decades.
In 1728, Dominique Girard designed the palace gardens according to French models. Owing to constant renovation and care, it is today one of the most authentic examples of 18th century garden design in Europe. Next to the Baroque gardens, Peter Joseph Lenné redesigned the forested areas based on English landscaping models. Today it is a wonderful place to have a walk.