If you regularly read articles on my blog, you know that I particularly like places that have their share of mysteries and legends. So when I went through Munich this summer – a short stop of a few hours before flying back to Canada – I headed for Our Lady Cathedral in Munich (the Frauenkirche).
Why the Frauenkirche? Because I had read a legend about Munich Cathedral that intrigued me. According to this legend, the footprint found on the tiled floor of the church would be that of the devil.
An evil trace in the largest church in Munich? According to legend, the devil made a pact in the 15th century with the church’s architect, Jorg von Halspach, when the latter was looking for funds to build the building. The devil would have agreed to help the architect on one condition: there should be no window that would let in the daylight into the church.
When the construction of the cathedral was finished, the devil was satisfied entering the church, since the cathedral did not seem to have any windows. But taking one step further, he realized that the columns of the building prevented him from seeing the windows. Realizing that he had been deceived, he stomped the ground angrily, leaving his footprint, before turning into a wind that is still blowing today around the cathedral.
Well, okay, it’s more likely that it’s an inattentive worker who has left his mark in the soil of the Frauenkirche, but the famous diabolical footstep is the joy of tourists who come to take a picture.
There is, of course, more to see in the Frauenkirche than this single footprint. The church is the resting place of the former kings of Bavaria and is one of the highest buildings in Munich (according to a municipal by-law, it is forbidden to build a building in Munich higher than the bell towers of the Frauenkirche). It is also possible to climb to the top of the bell tower to have a view of the entire city and the Alps.
The Frauenkirche is located in the historic heart of Munich, not far from the beautiful city hall and Marienplatz.