"Havlíček's" Brixen - the gateway to Italy
We will certainly know Bressanone much better under the name Brixen and the name Karel Havlíček Borovský will surely jump in immediately. Yes, this is indeed the place where Emperor Franz Josef I was sent into exile by the „dissident“ Havlíček.
"Havlíček's" Brixen - the gateway to Italy
Those hurrying to Italy on the busiest motorway route across the Brenner Pass are getting ready to cross the old road, see the extensive Austrian fortress of Franzensfeste and visit the beautiful city of Bressanone. A nice bonus for this delay is the saving of tolls for Europabrücke and Italian motorways. After overcoming the pass, we find ourselves in Italy, but until the end of 1918, this area was part of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy. It was only after losing World War I that South Tyrol fell to Italy. However, thanks to this, German is still spoken mainly in the area, and all inscriptions and place names are bilingual. We Bressanone will certainly be known much better under the name Brixen and the name Karel Havlíček Borovský will surely jump in immediately. Yes, this is indeed the place where Emperor Franz Josef I was sent into exile by the „dissident“ Havlíček. This made the city close to the Czechs, but even without this reminiscence, the city is definitely worth a visit. Brixen was founded in 901 and thanks to its strategic location and mild climate, the local area was chosen by the bishops of Brixen and the high nobility from their headquarters. We are indebted to them for a number of preserved magnificent mansions and for the creation of the former bishop's residence, now the Renaissance Hofburg. The beautifully landscaped city center has retained its ancient character with city gates, alleys between 16th-century burgher houses, arcades and many churches and church buildings. Of particular interest is the area around Domplatz and a visit to the cathedral from the original 13th century, rebuilt in the Baroque style with frescoes and next to the standing Gothic parish church of St. Michael with a 15th century campaign. Although the town has grown significantly since 1851, when Havlíček arrived here, it is not difficult to imagine what the town looked like when walking through the center, when it arrived here after a painful several-day journey by stagecoach on winter roads. It was a town with only 2,700 inhabitants, many of whom were church persons and officials. Havlíček, who was later visited by his wife and daughter, was completely cut off from his beloved Czech, but otherwise he probably lived here very nicely. The Austrian treasury paid for his accommodation and, in addition, he received a very decent renovation, while Havlíček himself was quite a wealthy man. He was first accommodated in the hotel „U Slona“, which is still the most luxurious hotel in the city. He then moved into a house at 3 Adlerbrückengasse, opposite today's Pharmacy Museum. Upon arrival, the family rented him a nice house with a garden on Kachleraustrasse. Although the family had a maid, they had food delivered from the hotel restaurant. The mountain air certainly benefited the whole family, whose health curse was tuberculosis, on which everyone eventually died. After the family returned to Bohemia, Havlíček moved back to the street by the bridge, and after signing a commitment not to continue public activities, he was allowed to return home. The three-and-a-half-year stay in Brixen belonged to an important creative period of the poet and journalist, who died at the age of 35 in Prague in house number 1029 in the current Havlíčková Street. Brixen is the place where Havlíček created a number of important works, the most famous of which are probably the Tyrolean Elegy and King Lavra. The city administration takes good care of his legacy – there are two memorial plaques on the white house and Karl Havlicek strasse leads to it (via Karl Havlíček) and there is an unmissable arrow „Havlickuv dum“ on the street. Brixen is located at an altitude of 560 m above sea level, but due to the fact that the valley is open to the south and protected by the surrounding peaks from northern winds, there is a surprisingly pleasant mild climate. Thanks to this, vineyards and orchards of strictly kept apples can be seen everywhere on the slopes. Those who have more time can explore the surroundings. Walks around the River Isarco, hikes to the nearby Lake Vahrner See, the surrounding castle ruins or the extensive 12th-century Neustift Abbey are popular. The town is surrounded by high mountains, which offer beautiful hikes or skiing in the local ski resort of Plose. The mountains can be easily reached by cable cars and enjoy beautiful panoramic views.
Bressanone is Brixen
a very pleasant town with a historic center is surrounded by mountains and the snow for skiing lasts a really long time on the slopes above the valley
Where do we get to Havlíček's house?
no problem, it's well marked – Czech, Italian and German
Where does the road to Havlíček's house lead?
after all, Karel Havlíček Street!
a nice house with a garden and a luxurious view is in private hands, so we can't get inside
there is a well-kept memorial plaque on the house
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