1571Tomb of the Habsburg dynasty, King of Bohemia, Prague, Czech Republic

In 1566, Emperor Maximilian II entrusted Alexander Colin, who had worked as a court sculptor for Archduke Ferdinand II in Innsbruck, with the construction of a funerary monument for the latter and his wife (Anne of Bohemia and Hungary) in St. Vito’s Cathedral, Prague.

Already in his will, written in 1543, Ferdinand had given detailed provisions as to the design of this funerary monument: it was to be built in white marble with an inscription in gold letters at the top bearing his name, title, origin and time of his death. Since a suitable sculptor could not be found neither in Vienna or Prague, the commission was finally awarded to Alexander Colin, who had already shown his art in completing the monument for Maximilian in Innsbruck. Colin created the double gravestone with marble from the Vinschgau between the years 1571 and 1573. The work was then sent to Linz, where it remained until 1575 even though sledge transportation to Prague had been prearranged.

Once it reached its destination, supposedly around 1576-77, the monument was expanded to accommodate and commemorate emperor Maximilian II, who had died in the meantime, by placing him alongside his parents.