09 December 2015

The grave of Empero Karl I. at the Church of Nossa Senhora de Monte

When i was in Madeira recently i of course also made a Visit to the Church of Nossa Senhora de Monte. It is a catholic  pilgrimage church. It was built from 1741. Since an earthquake destroyed the completed construction in 1748, the church was only inaugurated on 20.12.1818.
A staircase leads to three archways leading to the entrance portal. The nave is flanked by two bell towers. The edges and the stained glass windows still show the nichtverputzten dark tuff.  
 In the high altar there is an image of the holy Virgin. Every on the 15th August Feast of the Assumption takes a great procession held in honor of the holy Virgin. The 68 steps of the staircase are thereby put back on his knees.

In the left aisle of the church there is a small Chapel with  the coffin of the last Emperor of Austria, Karl I.  He was sent after the First World War into exile. On 19.11.1921 he arrived in Funchal, where he lived until his death in 1922 with his family in the mansion Quinta Gordon above the church.Behind his coffin is a cross of the South Tyrolean sculptor Valentin Gallmetzer which near the Widums formerly stood in Feldthurns.Empress  Zita had wanted a Tyrolean Cross, commissioned Franz Josef Graf Forni (1904-1992), which approached Karl Wolfgruber. This thought of that cross, whose artists had maintained an intimate relationship with the Emperor, it was bought, who restored it and bring about the Portuguese embassy in Rome to Monte. On the back of a writing tablet is mounted as follows: "Carolus quidam Brixinensis hunc salutis mundi Signum anno MCM LXVII dicavit. Valentinus Gallmetzer ex civitate Clusinense aetati LXXXV annorum hanc imaginem sculpsit ". 


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