For more than two centuries, Graz was a military power fighting the Turks. This armory, built during 1642-45, dates from these Turkish Wars. An early baroque gate is flanked by statues of Mars and Minerva(war deities). There are many floors to this building, separated by beautiful, original wood-beamed ceilings.
On the first floor there is a vaulted cannon hall.
The additional floors display three centuries of weaponry including 30,000 (yes, the number is correct) of harnesses, coats of armor, helmets, swords, pikes, muskets, pistols, and other nameless implements of war. (check photos of me wearing some of this armor).
In 1749, Empress Maria Theresa, in recognition of Styrian military service allowed this arsenal to remain when the others were destroyed.
The guides in this museum are college students who live in Graz..they are friendly and very helpful in explaining history and answering questions.
There are ancient weapons/implements of war that visitors are allowed to wear for a few moments.
One interesting thing I learned through this visit was that most soldiers who fought did not die from battle wounds but from either falling off their horse or from the heat..their armor weighed over a hundred pounds and was overwhelming, limiting effective fighting.
by unorthodox traveler
December 14, 2000
From journal Graz Austria-Don't Miss this City