Adolf Hitler lives in Vienna

The beautiful old world city of Vienna, capital of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, with its magnificent culture that had seen the likes of Beethoven and Mozart, now had a new resident, a pale, lanky, sad looking eighteen year old named Adolf Hitler.

Vienna was a city alive with music and full of diverse people who loved the arts and felt lucky to call the place home. In February 1908, Hitler moved there with the goal of attending the art academy and becoming a great artist.

Sixty years before him, Hitler's father also came to Vienna seeking opportunity. At that time the Hapsburg Empire was ruled by Emperor Franz Josef. When Adolf Hitler arrived, it was still ruled by him, although he was now senile and under the influence of corrupt ministers. His empire, which had ruled Austria and surrounding countries for centuries, was now in great decline. Vienna, however, remained a city of opportunity and attracted a multicultural population from all over the empire.

Hitler's friend from his hometown of Linz, August Kubizek, also came to Vienna and they roomed together. In Vienna, Hitler continued the same lazy lifestyle he had enjoyed in Linz after dropping out of school. Kubizek described Hitler as a night owl who slept till noon, would go out for walks taking in all the sights, then stay up late discussing his ideas on everything from social reform to city planning. Hitler made no effort to get a regular job, considering himself far above that. He dressed like an artist and at night dressed like a young gentleman of leisure and often attended the opera.

Kubizek also recalled Hitler displayed an increasingly unstable personality with a terrible temper. At times he was quite reasonable but he was always prone to sudden outbursts of rage especially when he was corrected on anything. He had no real interest in women, preferring to keep away from them and even smugly rebuffed those who showed any interest in him. He strictly adhered to his Catholic upbringing regarding sex, believing men and women should remain celibate until marriage.

Hitler was also prone to sudden bursts of inspiration and had many interesting ideas but never finished anything he started. Whether composing his own opera or redesigning the city of Vienna, he would start with much enthusiasm and work hard, only to eventually lose interest.

In October 1908, Hitler tried for the second time to gain admission to the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts. However, his test drawings were judged as so poor that he was not even allowed to take the formal exam. It was a bitter disappointment to Hitler and effectively left him on the outside looking in at the artistic community in Vienna. His friend Kubizek had successfully gained entrance to the Vienna Conservatory and was studying music there, doing quite well, in contrast to Hitler.

Hitler soon parted company with his friend in a rather strange manner. When Kubizek returned to Vienna after two months of military training in November 1908, he found Hitler had moved out of their shared apartment and left no forwarding address.