Sunday, June 27, 2010

Travel Photos: #0001

We took these in 2001 in the famous Sedlec Ossuary near the medieval mining town of Kutná Hora in the Czech Republic, where the remains of thousands of black death and Hussite War victims were arranged by a local woodcarver in 1870.

Here's The Bride posing under the chandelier.

Here's the Coat-of-Arms of the local lord - the Schwarzenbergs - reproduced in the same materials, followed by a more pedestrian rendering of the same for comparison. And yes, that is a 20 or so foot tall mountain of skulls and femurs in the background.

Of special interest is the lower right quadrant, wherein is depicted a raven plucking the eye out of the corpse head of a Turk - a little shout-out to the Schwarzenberg conquest of the Turkish fortress of Raab in 1599. This is badass even on the painted version, but especially when lovingly rendered in human bones. Here's a closeup I found on the googleweb:

As soon as we arrive the woman manning the door asked if we minded if she ran a small errand for a few minutes, leaving us alone in the place. We looked at one another, then answered, "Uhhh... We guess so?" And with that she closed the heavy wooden doors at the top of the stairs and locked us in behind them. Of course nothing came of it, but we were definitely hoping she looked both ways before she crossed the street on her errand lest an accident leave us forgotten to eventually become a part of the exhibit!

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