[Note: sorry if this is a repeat post; I wrote it in December, but it doesn't show up in Typepad as being "published' and was in the "unpublished" list. I am fairly certain it was published back in December, but here it is, maybe again.]
Kugelmugel: today's oddity.
The Prater is a very large public park that is in many ways the heart and soul of Vienna:
The Hauptallee (main avenue) is the main artery, lined with horse chestnut trees, closed to motorists and known to sports enthusiasts from the annual Vienna Marathon. The Wiener Prater is home to the Liliputbahn, a narrow gauge railway. Another unusual object to be found in the Wiener Prater is the Republik Kugelmugel (Republic of Kugelmugel), a spherical micronation. The Wiener Prater also houses a planetarium and the Prater Museum. Wiki Prater
Did you catch that bolded bit? The "spherical micronation, Kugelmugel." Here it is:
Is that what you imagined a "spherical micronation" to look like? The back story is interesting, although the thing I don't understand is exactly why this would have captured Austria's imagination to the degree that it sits in an 'honored,' albeit barbedwired-off place in the Prater.
Apparently, the artist who built the sphere, Edwin Lipburger argued over permits for building the spherical house. It was originally built in the countryside in Lower Austria, by the way. Frustrated, the artist declared the sphere to be the Republic of Kugelmugel and proclaimed its indepedence from Austria in 1984. There is only one address in the Republic: Antifaschismusplatz 1. Lipburger declared himself Head of State, and narrowly avoided a jail sentence when he began to print his own stamps.
The name "KugelMugel" is easy enough to explain: kugel means sphere and mugel means bump. Round Bump Country.
I find this bit from the Wiki page fascinating; one supposes the one population (in exile) reflects that fact that Mr. Lipburger does not live in Kugelmugel at present:
|Status||Government in Exile|
|Location||7.68m in diameter withinAustria|
|-||estimate||1 (in exile)|
I will point out, though that Kugelmugel does not make the list of Tiny European Nations, so it's not formally recognized, despite the flag. Kugelmugel does have its own website, if you are interested in more information (site is in German: don't say I didn't warn you): https://www.republik-kugelmugel.com/
"This place is dedicated to the great democratic revolutionary leader EDWIN LIPBURGER, who here began to abolish the entire old moral and to fight and eliminate all forms of corruption whatever masks they may be behind."
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