Deutschlandsberg in Styria
Deutschlandsberg is a town in Styria (Steiermark) with approximately 8,000 residents whom you can easily drive mad by pronouncing their town′s name as „Deutschlands-Berg“. In fact, it is pronounced as “Deutsch-Lands-Berg” with emphasis on “lands”, not on “Deutsch” as you would normally pronounce a German word. This is because the name "Landsberg" had existed beforehand and has nothing to do with Deutschland ("Germany"). It is actually quite amusing to see how passionate Styrians can get with this topic. Deutschlandsberg is a county town (Bezirkshauptstadt) and thus, the administrative, educational and economic powerhouse of the district.
The area around today′s Deutschlandsberg has been populated since Neolithic days. Later, the Celtic tribe of the Uperaks lived here and shaped the valley. The name “Lonsperch” (proto-Landsberg) was first mentioned in 1153 - interestingly enough, this is the way locals still refer to their town today. This very town developed from a settlement that grew around a local castle. Originally a satellite town that belonged to the Prince Archbishop of Salzburg, Deutschlandsberg later grew into a market town that belonged to the Duchy of Styria until 1748. In 1868, Deutschlandsberg became the county town it still is today; and gained the “Deutsch” (“German”) to avoid confusions with a town of a similar name in Habsburg Slovenia.
In 1918, Austria′s last Emperor Karl I elevated Deutschlandsberg to the rank of a city. Speaking of Imperial nobility: The princes of Liechtenstein played an important role in the history of Deutschlandsberg, descendents of side-lines of this family still live there today.
Sightseeing Attractions of Deutschlandsberg
In terms of sightseeing attractions, there are several things worth noting in Deutschlandsberg. The main attraction is without doubt the castle of Burg Deutschlandsberg: Since 1932, it belongs to the city. It is home to the “Archeo Norico”, a museum with exhibition space of 600 square metres on six floors. It is run as an extensive archaeology and history museum with a strong local rooting. Its focus lies on prehistoric things and all sorts of Celtic and Medieval stuff - ideal for children who fancy dungeons, swards and torture tools.
Another attraction of Deutschlandsberg is the parish church: Built between 1688 and 1701. In 1867, the current tower was built. Another church is the “Kirche zum Heiligen Ulrich”. Today′s Rathaus or city hall was first mentioned in the 14th century and served as a home to local civil servants. In the 18th century, it was equipped with a new façade, something between late-Baroque and Classicist, the architect in charge was Franz Xaver Jud. The building was bought by the city of Deutschlandsberg in 1920 and transformed into a Rathaus. The chateaux of Wildbach is a Baroque building worth a closer look, so is Schloss Frauental.
Music & Surroundings of Deutschlandsberg
Deutschlandsberg prides itself for being a very musical place; indeed, there are all sorts of concerts, festivals and performances as well as an International Summer School for opera performance. However, most concerts target a regional audience, so don′t expect too much from it. A much more exciting event is supposedly the “Schilcherberg in Flammen” art festival with music, dance and fireworks around the castle. For natural beauty, note the Deutschlandsberger Klause, a gorge ideal for a nice hike.
Beyond that, keep in mind that Deutschlandsberg is in Styria: Scenic mountain areas, hospital people and great food. Note also that the area around Deutschlandsberg is known for
Schilcher, a very acidic wine for people with an acquired taste or specific kinds of
consumables. The “Schilcherweinstraße” is a theme road near
Deutschlandsberg that will teach you more about it.
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