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Monument to eternal love

The Sepulchral Chapel on Württemberg Hill

Close-up of the cupola in the Sepulchral Chapel on Württemberg Hill. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Julia Haseloff
THE SEPULCHRAL CHAPEL IN POETRY

THE POEM

The romantically situated Sepulchral Chapel on Württemberg Hill quickly found its way into the poetry of the time. A fellow countryman of Queen Katharina, Fyodor Ivanovich Tyutchev of Petersburg, dedicated one of his poems to Württemberg hill, then still under the name "Rotenberg" until 1907.

Commemorative plaque for Tyutchev in Munich. Image: Wikipedia, in the public domain

Tyutchev was active in Germany for years.

RUSSIAN POLITICIAN AND POET

In Germany, Fyodor Ivanovich Tyutchev (1803–1873) was primarily known for poems that were rich in depth of thought, warmth of feeling and perfection of form. Tyutchev came to Germany as part of a Russian delegation and was active here for several years. It was supposedly while traveling during this time that he encountered the Sepulchral Chapel on Württemberg Hill. His poem "Rotenberg" was translated from Russian into German by Ludolf Müller in 1835.

The Sepulchral Chapel on Württemberg Hill. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Günther Bayerl

Inspiration for a poem.

ROTENBERG

Across vine-covered hillsides go sailing golden clouds.
Below, its waters swelling greenly,
the river darkens, calling loud.
My gaze climbs slowly from the valley
and bit by bit the peaks are found.
Upon the very summit
there is a temple, bright and round.

 

Into that unearthly dwelling
mortal foot will never go.
There is such light there.
Desertedly so pure, air flows
to silence sounds which reach the heights.

There's only nature-life up there,
and something wafted, lightly festive,
that's like a Sunday's silent air.