We already saw the Serbian Orthodox church of San Spiridione. Unfortunately part of the interior was being restored while we were there and therefore hidden behind scaffolding. I did what was possible in today’s and tomorrow’s image.
The church and the square in front of it are at the end of a short, straight canal coming at a right angle from the sea, not much longer than 150 meters. Along the canal are some typical tourist restaurants and cafés, nothing really recommendable, but sitting next to the water is nevertheless quite satisfying.
This is the Serbian Orthodox church of San Spiridione. It was built while Trieste was under Austrian jurisdiction.
During the napoleonic era the Austrian emperor gave up on the idea of a Holy Roman Empire. It had been a fiction for a long time, and in fact the reach of the emperor’s power had already been confined largely to what then finally became the Austro-Hungarian empire. Formally terminating the Holy Roman Empire was not much more than a symbolic denial of Napoleon’s request for succession.
Austria was not a nation state like France had been all the while, or like Italy strove to become at that time. Austria was multi-national, multi-ethnic and increasingly multi-religious. This church, far from any Serbian-Orthodox territory, is a sign for a tolerance that had long been fought for – and that was lost again in and between the two World Wars.
This is a monument for the fallen warriors in Italy’s war for unity and independence. For every war you find those monuments, and you find them on both sides of the former front.
In reality those monuments are not for the fallen soldiers at all. They are for the glory of the rulers who sent them to death. Look at those bodies: ancient heroes, immaculate supermen. The reality of war is different. It’s unimaginable suffering and the stench of steaming blood, putrefying flesh and shit. There is no glory in war.