Munich - A Perfect Morning Sun and a Piece of History Everywhere


One of my favorite shots; taken during an early morning run through the park of Schloss Nymphenburg last June 2016.
Nymphenburg Palace owes its foundation as a summer residence to the birth of the long-awaited heir to the throne, Max Emanuel, who was born in 1662 to the Ferdinand Maria and his wife, Henriette Adelaide of Savoy.

When Bavaria became a kingdom, in the early nineteenth century, Nymphenburg resumed its important function e.g. the residence of Maximilian IV Joseph, who, as Maximilian I Joseph, was the first King of Bavaria (reigned 1806–25). 

In subsequent years the palace remained a favorite residence of the Bavarian royal family. The famous/infamous King Ludwig II of Bavaria (reigned 1864-1886) - also called the Märchenkönig or the Mad King Ludwig - was born there on 25 August 1845.

He has left an architectural legacy in his series of elaborate castles built throughout Bavaria, including Neuschwanstein, Lindenhof, and Herrenchiemsee. King Ludwig was a passionate supporter of composer Richard Wagner. The walls of Neuschwanstein are decorated with frescoes, depicting scenes from the legends used in Wagner's operas, including Tannhäuser, Tristan und Isolde, Lohengrin, Parsifal, and the Die Meistersinger. 

King Ludwig drowned under suspicious circumstances in the Starnberger Lake at the age of 40. Ludwig's death was officially ruled a suicide by drowning, but details also suggest a political struggle over power. Some are convinced he was murdered by his enemies. His death remains a mystery. Ludwig II left behind a large collection of plans and designs for other castles, which were never built.

On an interesting historical side note: King Ludwig's Neuschwanstein (the 'Fairytale Castle') was one of the key storage areas during WW II for many of the Nazi-looted art properties.  Most of  the stolen art stemmed from France.

Neuschwanstein was chosen as headquarters of the 'Einsatzstab Reichsleiter Rosenberg,' which was at the time Germany's art-looting key organization. The castle's location near the Austrian border, and far from Berlin or other likely Allied targets, made Neuschwanstein an ideal storage depot.

Hollywood's 2014 Monuments Men told the (probably a little Hollywood embellished) story of the Allied special forces unit tasked with protecting and tracking down these stolen pieces of art. Interesting backstory.






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