If you walk along to the castle, the funicular or St Peter’s Cemetery, you will cross Kapitelplatz (Square). This vast square is surrounded by the cathedral to the south, the provostry and Archbishop’s palace to the east, the novice wing of St Peter’s Abbey to the west, and the cathedral chapter’s mill. Kapitelplatz (Square) was once home to a cathedral abbey: it was here and in the palaces in the connecting alleyways that higher clergy stayed until the archbishopric was dissolved in 1803. Dominated by the cathedral canon, this area was defined by majestic and imposing residences lined up along Kapitelgasse, Kaigasse and Chiemseegasse.
Just to the side of the large square, the horse pond (Kapitalschwemme) provides a reminder of times gone by: there was even a horse pond in Kapitelplatz (Square) in the Middle Ages, when it was given pride of place in the centre of the square. Under Archbishop Leopold Freihher von Firmian, the new design by Franz Anton Danreiter was constructed in 1732: you can’t miss the Roman influence. The horses’ entrance to the water basin leads directly to a group of sculptures. These show Neptune, god of the sea, with his crown and trident, on a horse spurting water.
Kapitelplatz (Square) is a lively focal point in the centre of Salzburg’s Old Town: chess is played with extra large figures, while many stalls and the ‘Sphaera’ piece by Stephan Balkenhol give life to the square.
There is a chronogram with Archbishop Firmian’s coat of arms above the niche.