Prague Concert Life, 1850-1881

Event title:

Religious service to celebrate the wedding of the Emperor Franz Joseph

Venue: Cathedral church of St Vitus [sv Vít]

Event type: Church music events

Date: 24/04/1854

Programme comprising:

General participants:
  • ŠKROUP, Jan Nepomuk: director of ensemble
ŠKROUP, Jan Nepomuk : Festival Mass, vv, orch
ŠKROUP, Jan Nepomuk : unspecified graduale, [vv, orch]
EYBLER, Joseph von : unspecified offertorium
UNIDENTIFIED, ? : unspecified Te deum, vv, [orch / org?]
General participants:


On 25/4/1854 Mercy’s Anzeiger published an account of the events of 24th given as part of celebrations for the wedding of Franz Josef to Elizabeth of Bavaria. This reported that in the Church of St Vitus was there was a performance of a Festival Mass by the Domkapellmeister J.N. Škroup, a specially composed graduale by him, an offertorium by Eybler, and a celebratory Te Deum.

The supplement 14 to Lumír 1854 published on 22/4/1854 reported upon the events taking place as part of the Prague celebrations for the wedding of Franz Josef and Elizabeth of Bavaria, noting: ‘On Monday, the day of the celebration of the wedding of His Majesty the Emperor will be celebrated mass in the Prague parish churches and „Te Deum“ (at St Vitus about 9 in Týn about 11 o’clock), and a great parade of the [Prague] garrison... In the evening will be a festive Te Deum in the church of St Clement in the Old Town. In the theatre will be a festively illuminated prologue and for the first time will be sung the new National Anthem, then a performance of the opera
Norma“.’ The report also noted that other non-musical events would include the opening of a new asylum for babies and infants at St Castullus [Sv Haštal], the laying of the foundation stone for the building of the new parish school of St Maria de Victoria in the Little Town, and the giving out of lunches for more than 3000 poor. The ‘new National Anthem’ was possibly not referring to Haydn’s setting of 1797 with the new words by Seidl that were written for the Accession of Franz Josef in 1848, but to a new Czech version that was published in 1854 by Lumír 22/4/1854. This was ‘Bože, zachovej nám krále, Chraniž císaře i zem’ by Josef Antonín Šrůtek of Hradec Králové, and was written specifically for the wedding of Franz Josef.

The supplement 15 to Lumír 1854, published on 25/4/1854 included a detailed account of events taking place on 24th April 1854, the day of the marriage of Franz Josef. The correspondent reported that ‘In all churches well take place at varying times before noon a celebratory religious service and
Tě Bože chválíme“ sung [the Czech translation of Te Deum laudaumus. This description does not indicate that the Te Deum was performed in Czech]. In the main church on Hradčany will be conducted a service by His Excellency the Provost Václavíček at which will be present the court of Emperor Ferdinand and the Empress Marie Anna, as well as civil and military authorities. From the Marianský Ramparts a salute will be fired.’ 

Summary of sources:

Lumír (22/04/1854)
Mercy's Anzeiger für Böhmen (25/04/1854)
Lumír (25/04/1854)