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Episcopalian Baroque residence at Lake Constance

Meersburg New Palace

Audience chamber, Meersburg New Palace. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Arnim Weischer
Governing and living

The state apartment

The east apartment, the state apartment, was the prince-bishop's living quarters. These rooms were also lavishly decorated: like everything in the palace, they were designed to reflect the resident's rank.

Retreat, Meersburg New Palace. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Arnim Weischer

The only place the prince-bishop could be alone.

Very little privacy

In the state apartment, the state bedroom, the retreat and the small cabinet (a kind of meeting room and office) form the prince-bishop's living quarters, while the antechamber and the audience chamber remained public spaces. Even so, official meetings often took place in the cabinet as well as the prince-bishop's bedroom. The retreat, taken from the French “retirer”, meaning to retire, was the only truly private room available to the prince-bishop.

“Joseph’s dream”, oil on canvas, Andreas Brugger, circa 1768. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Andrea Rachele

The painting “Joseph's dream.”

Sleeping and working

The bedroom was not just a place for sleeping, but also for working. An overdoor by the famous painter, Andreas Brugger (1737–1812), once hung above the double doors. Today, these paintings from 1768, titled “Jakob's dream” and “Joseph's dream”, hang on the walls. Together with the stucco by Carlo Luca Pozzi, the room imparts a representational feel, which is why it is categorized as a state bedroom. From the bedroom, the prince bishop could enter his retreat, his own private space.

Porcelain cabinet, Meersburg New Palace. Image: Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg, Werner Hiller-König

Small porcelain showpieces as decoration.

A decorative porcelain collection

The little cabinet adjoining the prince’s bedroom was decorated with numerous porcelain pieces and other treasures. This room was also used for personal conversations. A representational cabinet like this one would have been furnished with decorative showpieces in line with the fashions of the time. A close look at the stucco from Carlo Luca Pozzi's studio reveals a figure with a pannier. This kind of basket was used to carry a variety of goods, including glass and porcelain, over land.

Central representational room

The lavishly decorated audience chamber is where the prince-bishop received guests and conducted official sovereign business. The audience chamber and antechamber are decorated with replicas of the famous “Chasses de Maximilien” tapestry series depicting the hunts of Emperor Maximilian II. The tapestries depict scenes from a wild boar hunt. Glazed earthenware stoves have replaced the original stoves, which were taken to Mannheim in the 19th century and subsequently destroyed in World War II.

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