Monday, September 9, 2013

Prince Franz Josef II Now in Mauren

Photo: Paul Trummer / Liechtensteiner Vaterland /
Not the actual Prince Franz Josef II of course as he has been dead for 24 years this year but a bust of him. Last Friday, Hereditary Prince Alois and Hereditary Princess Sophie were in the north-eastern municipality of Mauren to unveil a bust of the Hereditary Prince's grandfather who ruled the Principality between 1938 and his death in 1989.

But just how did the bronze bust of the former Fürst end up in Mauren? Created by Dutch sculptor Kees Verkade in 2006, it was originally placed in front of the town hall of Liechtenstein's capital Vaduz to commemorate the centenary of Prince Franz Josef II's birth. As the Liechtensteiners seem to be quite into busts to remember important events, two new ones, this time of the late Prince and his wife Princess Gina, were unveiled in front of the St Florin cathedral to commemorate their 70th wedding anniversary earlier this year.

As the cathedral and the town hall are only about 600 metres apart, they (whoever that is) probably thought that despite their bust-loving nature all the busts would be a little too much and asked themselves what to do with the 'old' one. To their aid came a Mauren native patron of the arts who bought the bust and gifted it to his hometown and after a contractor donated a marble pedestal, it is now adorning the the Fürst-Franz-Josef-Street in Mauren.

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