Tournament site

This large square, referred to in the older literature as "a carousel square of the old German type", is a key element of the "chivalric precinct", which decisively changed the old gardens and enriched them with new content.

The cult of the knights was an important component of western civilisation in the second half of the 18th century. First it was the Freemasons who began to refer to themselves as bearers of light in dark times. They therefore regarded the medieval knights as a great model for their activities.

In the Vienna lodge "Strict Observance", headed by Prince Albert of Saxony, Duke of Teschen this thought was already firmly anchored in the 1870s. From 1790 the "Wildenstein Knights of the Blue Earth" were founded in Seebenstein, a secret association that sought to bring to life medieval customs in a playful form.

TurnierplatzLong before the construction of the tournament site, begun in 1798, a procession of knights took place in Laxenburg in 1791, whose theatrical architectural elements displayed the stylistic form of Neo-Gothic. The imperial couple and Michael Riedl were thus able to carry on a local tradition here, which was continued on the tournament site with regular displays for the general populace in the 19th century.

This curious setting with the imperial box, judges boxes and tribunes for spectators is a monument that is unique of its kind. Much later Joseph Parkfrieder took up the concept of a "chivalric precinct" and the form of Laxenburg in his "Heldenberg" constructed in 1848/1849.