In a few months, I will be going back to Europe for the third time! The past two times I went to Europe, I traveled to Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Liechtenstein, Belgium, Holland, and Denmark. This time I will be going to Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Slovenia, Italy, Luxembourg, and France.
So far, I’ve traveled to 13 countries. After this trip, though, I will have traveled 17 countries in total. Right now, I’m still currently in the process of planning the trip. Some of the places I’ll be revisiting and some of the places are going to be completely new to me. I’m not going to say exactly where I’m going just yet. I’ll leave that for after I come back and can post pictures.
Löwendenkmal is a lion monument in Luzern, Schweiz (Lucerne, Switzerland). In June of 2012, I was fortunate enough to visit this monument. So let me tell you the history of Löwendenkmal…
History: This monument is a dying lion, designed to commemorate the fallen Swiss guards who lost their lives in the French Revolution serving King Louis XVI. These Swiss guard were massacred in 1792 when they were protecting the royal family from revolutionaries attack on the Tuileres Palace (approximately 760 died). One of the guards on leave, Karl Pfyffer von Altishofen, wanted to create a monument to commemorate his fellow guards. He started to save money in 1818, and Danish sculptor Bertel Thorvalsen designed the lion monument. The monument was hewn in 1820-1821 by German stone mason Lucas Ahorn in sandstone rock. The lion is impaled by a spear and covering a shield. Next to the lion is another shield bearing the Swiss coat of arms. The latin inscription above the lion reads, “Helvetorium fedai ac Virtuti.” This translate to, “To the loyalty and bravery of the Swiss.” Below the lion, is the inscription of the soldiers names and the number of fallen and surviving soldiers. Fallen-DCCLX(760). Survived-CCL(350).
If you are ever in Switzerland, das Löwendenkmal is definitely a worthy sight to see. Mark Twain praised this particular monument as, “the most mournful and moving piece of stone in the world.”