All you loyal readers of my Liège posts might recall that for over eight centuries, from 980–1795, “a large swath of what is now Belgium was ruled from Liège by a succession of Prince-Bishops, who as the name implies were both the secular and the religious rulers. Separation of church and state was a concept whose time had not yet come (and would no doubt have horrified these rulers if they had ever heard of it).”
Well, Salzburg took this one step further because for about six hundred years it was ruled by men known as Prince-Archbishops, who lived in baroque luxury in their Residence which was (and still is) directly adjacent to the Cathedral.
This whole complex of secular and religious buildings is now called the DomQuartier (Cathedral Quarter) and can be visited in one go. You just enter at Residenzplatz 1, go through the courtyard, climb two flights of stairs, buy your ticket, stow your backpack in a locker and then follow the signs that lead you on a circle tour through all the buildings and back to where you started. Among other things, you see the carefully restored baroque rooms of the Residence and an art gallery of paintings and other artworks that were amassed by the Prince-Archbishops over the centuries.
Since photography was not allowed inside the rooms, I can’t show you any of them, only the outside and the views from the walkways connecting the buildings.
As you follow the signs that lead you through the various buildings of the DomQuartier, you will eventually find yourself in the upper level of the cathedral, in the Cathedral Organ Gallery, where you can see what the cathedral looks like from the inside.
Here is the cathedral as seen from the catacombs of St. Peter’s cemetery. As you can see, this cathedral has three domes, two on the front towers and one at the back. This is confusing because a German word for ‘cathedral’ is Dom, so in my English classes there is always someone who thinks the English word dome means cathedral, which it doesn’t, though most cathedrals have domes of some sort up on their roofs. (Any questions?)
My photos in this post are from 2016. I revised the text in 2020.
See more posts on Salzburg, Austria.