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Vienna, capital of Austria.
Vienna, capital of Austria.
Vienna seal 1926.svg

Vienna (/viˈɛnə/ (About this sound listen); German: Wien, pronounced [viːn] (About this sound listen)) is the federal capital and largest city of Austria, and one of the nine states of Austria. Vienna is Austria's primate city, with a population of about 1.8 million (2.6 million within the metropolitan area, nearly one third of Austria's population), and its cultural, economic, and political centre. It is the 7th-largest city by population within city limits in the European Union. Until the beginning of the 20th century, it was the largest German-speaking city in the world, and before the splitting of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in World War I, the city had 2 million inhabitants. Today, it has the second largest number of German speakers after Berlin. Vienna is host to many major international organizations, including the United Nations and OPEC. The city is located in the eastern part of Austria and is close to the borders of the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Hungary. These regions work together in a European Centrope border region. Along with nearby Bratislava, Vienna forms a metropolitan region with 3 million inhabitants. In 2001, the city centre was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In July 2017 it was moved to the list of World Heritage in Danger.

Apart from being regarded as the City of Music because of its musical legacy, Vienna is also said to be "The City of Dreams" because it was home to the world's first psychotherapist – Sigmund Freud. The city's roots lie in early Celtic and Roman settlements that transformed into a Medieval and Baroque city, and then the capital of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. It is well known for having played an essential role as a leading European music centre, from the great age of Viennese Classicism through the early part of the 20th century. The historic centre of Vienna is rich in architectural ensembles, including Baroque castles and gardens, and the late-19th-century Ringstraße lined with grand buildings, monuments and parks.

Vienna is known for its high quality of life. In a 2005 study of 127 world cities, the Economist Intelligence Unit ranked the city first (in a tie with Vancouver and San Francisco) for the world's most liveable cities. Between 2011 and 2015, Vienna was ranked second, behind Melbourne. In 2018, it replaced Melbourne as the number one spot. For eight consecutive years (2009–2016), the human-resource-consulting firm Mercer ranked Vienna first in its annual "Quality of Living" survey of hundreds of cities around the world, a title the city still held in 2016. Monocle's 2015 "Quality of Life Survey" ranked Vienna second on a list of the top 25 cities in the world "to make a base within."

Selected location article

Hofburg Neue Burg section, seen from Heldenplatz. The statue of Archduke Charles is also pictured.

The Hofburg is the former principal imperial palace of the Habsburg dynasty rulers and today serves as the official residence and workplace of the President of Austria. It is located in the center of Vienna and was built in the 13th century and expanded several times afterwards. It also served as the imperial winter residence, as Schönbrunn Palace was the summer residence.

Since 1279 the Hofburg area has been the documented seat of government. The Hofburg has been expanded over the centuries to include various residences (with the Amalienburg and the Albertina), the imperial chapel (Hofkapelle or Burgkapelle), the imperial library (Hofbibliothek), the treasury (Schatzkammer), the Burgtheater, the Spanish Riding School (Hofreitschule), the imperial mews (Stallburg and Hofstallungen). Read more...

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The districts of Vienna (German: Wiener Gemeindebezirke) are the 23 named city sections of Vienna, Austria, which are numbered for easy reference. They were created from 1850 onwards, when the city area was enlarged by the inclusion of surrounding communities. Although they fill a similar role, Vienna's municipal districts are not administrative districts (Bezirke) as defined by the constitution; Vienna is a statutory city and as such is a single administrative district in its entirety.

The seats of Bezirksvorsteher (political district head) and Bezirksvertretung (district assembly) are located in the respective districts, with the exception of the 14th district, whose political representatives reside in the 13th district (to which much of the 14th had belonged until 1938). The Magistratisches Bezirksamt (district office of the city administration, not headed by the political district head) in four locations combines services for two districts:

  • for the 1st and 8th district in the 1st,
  • for the 4th and 5th district in the 5th,
  • for the 6th and 7th district in the 7th,
  • for the 13th and 14th district in the 13th.

Hence Vienna has 19 district offices.

Selected environment article


The Leopoldsberg (German pronunciation: [ˈleːopɔlʦˌbɛʁk] (About this sound listen); 425 m, 1,394 ft) is perhaps Vienna’s most famous hill, towering over the Danube and the city. Leopoldberg’s most prominent landmark is the church which stands at the top, and which is clearly visible from Vienna below. Construction of the Leopoldsberg Church (de), dedicated to Saint Leopold, began in 1679; an expansion following a design by Antonio Beduzzi was undertaken 1718–30. Other renovations were to follow. Across the square from the church, on what used to be a tower of the fortification system, a memorial to those Austrians who returned home from captivity after World War II was created in 1948. Read more...

Selected arts article

Four musicians with instruments are seated at a table as they face the camera. The lower section of a poster appears on the back wall, displaying the name "Schrammel."
The Schrammel quartet in 1890
Schrammelmusik (German pronunciation: [ˈʃʁaməlmuˌzik]) is a style of Viennese folk music originating in the late nineteenth century and still performed in present-day Austria. The style is named for the prolific folk composers Johann and Josef Schrammel. Read more...

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Wien - Lutherische Stadtkirche (2).JPG

The Lutheran City Church is a Lutheran church building in Innere Stadt, the first district of Vienna. Read more...

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The Vienna Open (currently sponsored by Erste Bank and called the Erste Bank Open) is a professional tennis tournament played on indoor hard courts. Originally an event of the Grand Prix tennis circuit (1974–1989), it is currently part of the ATP World Tour 500 series of the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) World Tour. It is held annually at the Wiener Stadthalle, in Vienna, Austria, since 1974.

The event was also known as the Stadthalle Open, and as the Fischer-Grand Prix from 1976 to 1985, as the CA-TennisTrophy from 1986 to 2003, as the BA-CA-TennisTrophy from 2004 to 2007 and as the Bank Austria TennisTrophy from 2008 to 2010, before being renamed to Erste Bank Open in 2011. Read more...

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The observatory's 68 cm refractor

The Vienna Observatory (German: Universitätssternwarte Wien) is an astronomical observatory in Vienna, Austria. It is part of the University of Vienna. The first observatory was built in 1753–1754 on the roof of one of the university buildings.

A new observatory was built between 1874 and 1879, and was finally inaugurated by Emperor Franz Joseph I of Austria in 1883. The main dome houses a refractor with a diameter of 68 centimetres (27 in) and a focal length of 10.5 metres (34 ft) built by the Grubb Telescope Company. At that time, it was the world's largest refracting telescope. Read more...

Selected transportation article

The Municipality of Vienna has operated bus lines since the 1920s; they increased in importance after suburban development increased demand for transport connections and after many tram lines in densely built-up areas were replaced by bus service.

Currently approximately 500 buses are in operation on 43 daytime and 23 nighttime routes along approximately 360 km (220 mi) of streets, carrying approximately 120 million passengers a year. Vienna Linien bus routes are designated with A (for Autobus) to distinguish them at a glance from tram routes. Additional bus routes within Zone 100 of the Verkehrsverbund Ost-Region, most of which are operated by other companies, such as Dr. Richard, and for which VOR tickets are also valid, are designated with B to distinguish them. Read more...

Selected biography

Lang on the set of Woman in the Moon (1929)

Friedrich Christian Anton "Fritz" Lang (December 5, 1890 – August 2, 1976) was an Austrian-German-American filmmaker, screenwriter, and occasional film producer and actor. One of the best-known émigrés from Germany's school of Expressionism, he was dubbed the "Master of Darkness" by the British Film Institute.

His most famous films include the groundbreaking futuristic Metropolis (1927) and the also influential M (1931), a film noir precursor that he made before he moved to the United States. Read more...

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