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Issue 01 – Easter 2020

Nunc Dimittis


On the Hapsburgs, fleeing Vienna, and coronavirus


Vienna’s good at plague. Walking down the Graben towards Café Hawelka, on March 10, the first day I was there, I was struck by what looked like an exuberant flame of white stone and brass, a monument of some kind, obviously Baroque, just about as Baroque as you can get, in fact, without being made out of pink marble or draped in lace. It had three main faces, each with a shield on it: “Deo Patri Creatori,” read the one towards me. I walked around to the other sides: “Deo Filio Redemptori,” and “Deo Spiritui Sanctificatori.” Between two of the main faces, there was another plaque:

Tibi Inquam Sanctissimae ac Individuae Trinitati, Ego Leopoldus, Humilis Servus Tuus Gratias Ago Quas Possum Maximas Pro Aversa Anno MDCLXXIX. Per Summam Benignitatem Tuam ab Hac Urbe Et Austriae Provincia Dirae Pestis Lue Atque In Perpetuam Debitae Gratitudinis Tesseram Praesens Monumentum Demississime Consecro

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About the author

Susannah Black