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Matrei in Osttirol
Matrei in Osttirol.
Matrei in Osttirol, Tirol, market town in the district of Lienz, alt. 977 m, pop. 4,521, area 277.77 km2, centre of Isel Valley, situated at a point where the Tauernbach stream empties into the River Isel; north-west of the town of Lienz. - District court, forestry office, District Office of Public Works, administration office of the nearby national park, Goldried weather-station, transmitter of the Austrian Broadcasting Company situated at the top of Klaunzer Hill, day-centre operated by the "Lebenshilfe" charity, youth centre, Tauerncenter multipurpose hall, transformer station of Gruben, Matrei power station, Felbertauernstraße AG (company which built the tunnel through the Felbertauern Mountains, also operates a toll-gate at the entry to the tunnel); summer tourism (290,258 overnight stays), bodice production, metal cabinet production, timber processing. - During the 7th and 8th centuries the region around Matrie in Osttirol was settled by Slavic tribes; later, Bavarian settlements; in 1200 Matrei in Osttirol was integrated into the province of Salzburg; first documented mention as "forum de Matrei" in 1280; during the Middle Ages Matrei in Osttirol was situated on an important trade route connecting the north with the south; largely devastated by a fire in 1897. - Early Classicist parish church (1777-1783) designed by T. Mayr, stuccowork, ceiling paintings by F. A. Zeiller, high altar (1805), two tombstones (dating from the 16th and 17th centuries) set into the graveyard walls, funeral chapel (1978), filial church at Ganz (built towards the end of the 12th century), nave redesigned in Gothic style around 1470, porch ornamented with frescoes (1340); has one of the most magnificent interiors of the Tirol, choir tower with an upper choir and a lower choir decorated with murals (1265-1270); church at Huben (Kaplaneikirche,1925-1928), numerous chapels; Weißenstein Palace (built in the 12th century; alterations added in the 19th century); ruins of Kienburg Castle; court buildings (erected between 1530 and 1539); old farmsteads (Paarhof, Einhof) in the vicinity, some of which are exclusively built in timber; Prosegg Ravine. Custom: Klaubaufgehen (according to long-standing traditions, persons with hideous masks (Klaubauf masks) move around the market town in the first days of December. They are joined by St. Nicholas, who distributes small gifts to the children).
Literature: M. Forcher (ed.), Matrei in Osttirol Ein Gemeinde-Buch zum 700-Jahr-Jubiläum der ersten Erwähnung als Markt 1280-1980, 1980.
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