Maria Theresa may again have a monument in Bratislava

A reduced copy of the former equestrian statue of Maria Theresa should be installed in front of the Hotel Carlton.

The statue of Maria TheresaThe statue of Maria Theresa (Source: Courtesy of BOS)

The equestrian statue of Maria Theresa may return to Bratislava. The Bratislava Beautification Association (BOS - Bratislavský Okrášľovací Spolok) wants to install an equestrian statue of Maria Theresa in front of the Hotel Carlton in the city centre. The bronze statue will be a reduced copy of the legendary marble statue by Slovak sculptor Ján Fadrusz that used to stand on what is nowadays called Ľ. Štúr Square.

The commission for monuments in Bratislava has already approved the installation of the statue in front of the hotel. Deputies of the city council are expected to approve it as well, although this has not happened yet.

The BOS’ idea is that the statue recalls the Austro-Hungarian ruler Maria Theresa and the times when Bratislava (Pressburg at that time) was a coronation city.

“We chose the statue by sculptor Ján Fadrusz, that has stood in Ľ. Štúr Square since 1897 and was destroyed by Czechoslovak legionaries in 1921 due to political reasons,” said Maroš Mačuha as cited by the TASR newswire.

Sculptor Martina Zimanová created a bronze, reduced, reproduction of the statue on the basis of historical photos and remaining fragments from the destroyed original.

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BOS has been looking for a place to install the statue for a long period of time. Originally they wanted to locate it on the Vajanského embankment, but the commission for monuments did not recommend this place. In the end the site in front of the Hotel Carlton was deemed to be appropriate.

“The advantage is that the owner of the hotel has promised help with maintenance of the statue,” said Mačuha.

After the city council greenlights the project, BOS can install the statue within some weeks.

Originally deputies of the city council where scheduled to deal with this issue at their session on February 21. This point on the session’s agenda was moved to one of the next sessions.

The statue by sculptor Ján Fadrusz, considered to be a symbol of loyalty, depicts the event of Vitam et sanguinem from 1741 when the Hungarian nobility supported the young ruler in her succession to the Hungarian throne.

Maria Theresia was crowned in St Martin Dome in the then Pressburg in 1741 however, no street or square bears her name in Bratislava.

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