December 17, 2017

Worlds 2nd Largest Tomb is in Innsbruck!

If you were of nobility how would you design your memorial? Would you opt for something regal but understated?  A beautiful place where people could come and remember you surrounded by beautiful gardens?  Or would you opt for a grand tomb in the center of a magnificent church surrounded by larger than life statues of your family members and ancestors?

Hofkirche Innsbruck Austria

from wikimedia

Well if you were Maximilian I of Innsbruck your tomb you be the grand scale of the last option.  In actuality, he didn’t make this decision but his Grandson Ferdinand I did.

Statue Hofkirche Innsbruck AustriaStatue Hofkirche Innsbruck Austria











Ferdinand designed and had built what is today the 2nd largest tomb in the world (the first being in Xian) which is located in the Hofkirche (Court Church) in Innsbruck.

Marble relief on tomb in Hofkirche Innsbruck Austria

from wikimedia

The highlight of the Gothic church is the giant marble tomb of Emperor Maximilian.  The tomb contains 24 marble reliefs depicting the Emperor’s accomplishments.

Hofkirche with embellishments Innsbruck Austria

from wikimedia

Embellishments were added in 1584 and include the wrought iron grille surrounding the tomb plus the kneeling emperor and the four virtues adorning the top.

Statues Hofkirche Innsbruck AustriaStatue Hofkirche Innsbruck Austria










Surrounding the marble tomb are 28 larger than life statues of Maximilian’s relatives including legendary King Arthur.Statue of King Arthur Hofkirche Innsbruck Austria

Alas, after all the expense and effort Maximilian’s remains were never moved here.  They are still in their original burial site in Wiener Neustadt, which is south of Vienna.


So what type of memorial do you want?

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  5. Magnificent…I would love to see this some day, especially the statues and marble reliefs on the side of the tomb! Certainly, I am glad his grandson went over the top for his grandpa! Nice photography once again my friend.

  6. jenjenk says:

    suits of armor freak me out…I’m convinced someone is in them ready to start moving. I’ve been to Knott’s Scary Farm too many times as a child…

    • Debbie Beardsley says:

      HA HA I think that was in a movie! Oh I haven’t been to Knott’s Scary Farm in many years. I have very fond memories of Knotts 🙂

  7. such a grand way to be buried and remembered. very interesting post 🙂

  8. Michael says:

    Sad that they’ve not yet put his remains in Innsbruck, a place Maximillan seemed to have preferred to Vienna.

  9. Jim says:

    Love those suits of armour. Always wondered how you could get them off quickly if you had to go in a hurry.

  10. Lisa says:

    I was a little nervous as I started reading this, I wondered if I was going to be creeped out by the photos. This place was at least tasteful and beautiful despite being a tomb. I visited one in Sicily that freaked me out.

  11. I am pretty low-maintenance. I think I could settle for maybe the 5th largest tomb in the world.

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