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Category: County Band 2015 Austria Tour Blog

  1. Trivia: Some things about Austria

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    • Vienna has the oldest zoo in the world, Schönbrunn Tiergarten, founded in 1752.
    • There is a city called Egg in Austria. And one called Rottenegg.
    • It is estimated that over 60% of Austrian adults are either overweight or obese; this is the highest rate in the European Union.
    • Austria is the only European Union nation that is not a member of NATO.
    • Austro-Hungarian Baroness Bertha von Suttner was the first woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize in 1905.
    • When the Turks fled the city of Vienna in 1683, they left behind a large quantity of coffee beans, thereby launching the great Viennese tradition of the Kaffeehaus(coffee house). Since the 19th century, the coffee house has been an indispensable social part of Viennese middle class and intellectual life.
    • Born in Salzburg, physicist Christian Doppler is most famous for his discovery of the “Doppler effect,” how the observed frequency of sound and light waves is affected by the relative motion of the source and detector. The Doppler radar that most meteorologists use today worldwide relies on the Doppler Effect.
    • In 1929, the system of Mach numbers for speed was introduced, named after Austrian physicist and philosopher Ernst Mach, commemorating Mach’s 1887 discovery that air flow changes dramatically above the speed of sound.
    • Viennese psychiatrist Sigmund Freud is best known as the founding father of psychoanalysis, which has heavily influenced modern psychology as well as other domains of science and culture. He died in exile in London in 1939.
    • Ferdinand Porsche, founder of the Porsche automobile company, was born in Mattersdorf, Austria, in 1875. He is best known as the designer of the powerful Porsche 911 sports car that became the ambassador for his company. Porsche is also known for designing the first Volkswagen automobile, at the direction of Adolf Hitler.
    • In Austria, the Tracht, or traditional folk costume, is accepted as formal wear and can be worn even to an elegant ball at the Viennese Opera. Men wear green Lodenjackets and Lederhosen (leather breeches), and women wear Dirndl dresses.
    • One of the world’s best-known Austrians is Arnold Schwarzenegger, who starred in the Terminator and Predatoraction film series, among others; was governor of California from 2003-2010; and is a member of the Kennedy clan by marriage.
    • Gregor Mendel was an Austrian monk who became famous for his garden experiments with pea plants. His experiments became the basis for the science of modern genetics, and he is known as the “father of modern genetics.”
    • Born in Salzburg, Austria, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was a child prodigy and supposedly had the gift of a perfect memory. At age 6, he performed for the Empress Maria Theresa at Schönbrunn Palace and composed some of the most enduring classical compositions in musical history including: The Marriage of FigaroDon GiovanniThe Magic Flute, and many symphonies and masses—including the unfinished masterwork Requiem, which is still shrouded in mystery. He was buried in a pauper’s grave in St. Mark’s Cemetery in Vienna, and his remains were never identified.
    • Born in Germany in 1770, Ludwig van Beethoven lived most of his adult life in Vienna, Austria. He battled deafness starting at the age of 26 and he composed some of his best-known works while profoundly deaf—including his Symphony No. 9 in D minor, with “Ode to Joy” as its final movement.

    Please note that all of the trivia above is sourced from the internet and has not been verified!  

    How about finding out some more interesting trivia and posting it in comments....