Grave Monuments and Honorary Graves
‘In death we are all equal', so an old saying goes. At the cemetery, however, this only applies to for the area ‘under the ground'. Just as in life, there is always a well-to-do quarter and a larger, more beautiful house. Pride and glory, reputation and affluence extending beyond lifetimes are on display here in impressive style.
Old covered footpaths
The old covered footpaths with 36 crypts are located directly on the broad avenue leading into the cemetery from the main entrance (Gate 2) after morgues 1 and 2. These Neo-Renaissance brick buildings were erected in 1880. The paintwork and gilding by Georg Glaser date back to 1883.
The architecturally impressive cenotaphs are decorated with numerous reliefs and sculptures.
Honorary graves are an integral part of Vienna's cultural history. They represent a significant honour which can be bestowed by the City of Vienna on public figures after their death.
In the first decades following its opening, Vienna Central Cemetery was not very popular in view of its distance from the city and wide open, barren spaces that prevailed at that time. However, with the construction of the honorary grave area, the cemetery soon turned into an attractive destination for visitors. Many famous and deserving people who had died before the cemetery was built and were interred in other cemeteries in Vienna were transferred here.
Renowned persons in the honorary graves
Today, around 1,000 honorary graves can be found in the honorary grave lot and in other lots designated as honorary graves.
The people buried here come from all walks of public life in Vienna up until the very recent past. They achieved renown in the areas of music, poetry, science, architecture, painting, invention, acting, politics or sport. Politicians who played a key role in shaping the fortunes of Austria are also buried in honorary graves. The presidential crypt in front of the Art Nouveau church is the final resting place of every Austrian federal president since 1945.