The Group took “19th century German Cities” as its theme this season. In the course of seven meetings, with cooperative input from more than half the membership, we reviewed 14 cities, from Berlin & Potsdam in the North to Vienna & Salzburg in the South by way of (amongst others) Hamburg & Lübeck in the Northwest and the former German cities of Königsberg & Danzig in the far Northeast.
Napoleonic invasion and its aftermath, mid-century attempts to bring about political liberalisation, industrialisation in England’s wake, the spread of railways (first locomotives imported from England), population growth shifting from countryside to urban centres, and the devastation of World War I: each had a major impact.
The final meeting culminated in a brief drama:
What happened when Emperor Franz Josef’s funeral cortège reached the Capuchin Church in Vienna? – a famous anecdote is acted out.
Next Season the Group’s theme will be “Visual Arts”