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Notes on the Geography of Austria : Vienna: Photo 41

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St. Charles Church was commissioned by Charles VI, designed by Fischer von Erlach, designer of the royal library, and consecrated in 1737 to commemorate the end of an attack of the plague. The columns, reminiscent of Trajan's in Rome, recount scenes from the life of St. Charles Borromeo, who as archbishop of Milan had dealt with the plague in 1576 and who had become the patron saint of plague fighters. The columns have been interpreted as the pillars of Hercules, symbolizing civilization, but they also echo second-century Rome.

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