The city of Salzburg is an architectural gem. Its most noteworthy buildings are a late 7th-century Benedictine abbey, which was for many years the center of missionary activities; the Franciscan church, consecrated in 1223; the early 17th-century cathedral, modeled after St. Peter's in Rome; the Residenz (16th–18th cent.), formerly the archiepiscopal palace; Mirabell castle (early 18th cent.), situated in a beautiful garden; and the Festspielhaus (1960), the city's chief concert hall. There is a monument to the physician and alchemist Paracelsus, who died in Salzburg in 1541. The city's university (founded 1623), except for its theological seminary, was closed in 1810 but was reopened in 1963. The Salzburg Seminar in American Studies is centered in Schloss Leopoldskron (18th cent.), a rococo castle.
The composer Mozart, Salzburg's most distinguished son, met scant recognition in the city during his stay there, but he is now honored by an annual summer music festival (see Salzburg Festival), which constitutes an important source of tourist revenue for Salzburg. Part of the house where Mozart was born is now a museum, and there is a commemorative statue on the quaint little square, the Mozart Platz. Since 1920 the morality play Everyman, written by Hugo von Hofmannsthal, has been performed annually in the cathedral square (now during the Salzburg Festival).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.