»» Schmiedgasse 15
The «Pelikanerker» (Pelican) is towered over by a golden pelican who thrusts his chest to water his babies with his blood. It is made of oak- and limewood and then painted with gray oil paint to give it the look of sandstone. It also show the old four continents (Africa, Asia, Europe and America) – each with one person. But wait only four continents? Where is Australia?
There is a simple explanation: This oriel dates from the beginning of the 18th century. And at that time, Australia had not been discovered yet. This oriel was built for his owner David Huber in 1708. The oriel is carried by an eagle with outstretched wings and two crocodiles holding a fluttering eagle on the tail feathers. Two janitors (bodyguards of the sultan) guard this Oriel. You can also see fruits, vegetable and a mandrake root.
The pelican as a Christian symbol has come to symbolize redemption through Jesus Christ. According to legend, when food was scarce a Pelican would pierce its own flesh to feed the young on its own lifeblood. The resulting imagery is salvation through the blood of Jesus. Pelicans have become rather rare as Christian symbols. This may be in part due to the discomfort some have with the bloody nature of the image, or to the loss of understanding of its symbolism. The belief probably came about because of the pelican’s red-tipped beak and very white feathers, and because long-beaked birds such as the pelican are often to be found standing with their beaks resting on their breasts. In addition, the Dalmatian pelican’s pouch turns red during the breeding season.
The pelican symbolizes also kindness, strenght and generosity. The pelican assumes the symbolism of all birds, that is they are symbolic of spiritual travellers. The white color of the pelican gives it a symbolic value far higher than most birds, as white symbolises the centre and purity. In many cultures, the pelican is a person who has been annihilated and become a god.