Ystad Abbey was inaugurated in 1267 by the Fransiscan Order. Along Vadstena it is the best preserved medieval abbey in Sweden. Dissolved at the Reformation, the Abbey was handed over to the towns people and soon fell into disrepair. The eastern part and gatekeeper’s house has survived to present days.. In 1912 it became home to the local museum, which holds changing temporary exhibitions in a wing of the abbey and the old abbey church. There is a lovely rose and herb garden in the grounds and also a cafe and shop.

The gothic style abbey church, dedicated to St. Peter, is today a parish church. It was built in the 14th century.

References:
  • Marianne Mehling et al. Knaurs Kulturführer in Farbe. Schweden. München 1987.

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Address

Klostergatan 10, Ystad, Sweden
See all sites in Ystad

Details

Founded: 1267
Category: Religious sites in Sweden
Historical period: Consolidation (Sweden)

More Information

content.skane.com

Rating

4.3/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Jonas Söderström (4 months ago)
I've been to the Gray Friars Monastery several times over the last few years. It's a beautiful piece of medieval architecture and love coming back. There is an museum in part of the Monastery which has different exhibits. Check out the ducks and duckpond outside the Monastery, they are lovely.
Marcela Troncoso (9 months ago)
Lovely environments. Not only the cloister, church and museum, but the garden around. Try to visit it when the roses garden is full of flowers and take some minutes to walk those geometrically planned paths that brings you to the small fountain in the centre. Then take your time by the vegetables garden and the herbs garden. It said that monks started the gardens more than 500 years ago. Close by the cloister relax for a while with the view of an artificial huge pond, meantime you discover the many species of ducks and acuatic birds that live there. Many different seasonal flowers make the experience complete
Anders Weinberg (10 months ago)
The pride of Ystad. Well worth a visit.
Giorgio Berardi (13 months ago)
The abbey is Ystad is lovely and well preserved, with various aspects of monastic life highlighted throughout the history of the city. A very interesting way for spending an hour or two, especially on a grey day.
Cyprian Czop (14 months ago)
A museum at the site of the former Franciscan convent and church, built 750 years ago.
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Porta Nigra

The Porta Nigra (Latin for black gate) is the largest Roman city gate north of the Alps. It is designated as part of the Roman Monuments, Cathedral of St. Peter and Church of Our Lady in Trier UNESCO World Heritage Site. The name Porta Nigra originated in the Middle Ages due to the darkened colour of its stone; the original Roman name has not been preserved. Locals commonly refer to the Porta Nigra simply as Porta.

The Porta Nigra was built in grey sandstone between 186 and 200 AD. The original gate consisted of two four-storied towers, projecting as near semicircles on the outer side. A narrow courtyard separated the two gate openings on either side. For unknown reasons, however, the construction of the gate remained unfinished. For example, the stones at the northern (outer) side of the gate were never abraded, and the protruding stones would have made it impossible to install movable gates. Nonetheless, the gate was used for several centuries until the end of the Roman era in Trier.

In Roman times, the Porta Nigra was part of a system of four city gates, one of which stood at each side of the roughly rectangular Roman city. The Porta Nigra guarded the northern entry to the Roman city, while the Porta Alba (White Gate) was built in the east, the Porta Media (Middle Gate) in the south, and the Porta Inclyta (Famous Gate) in the west, next to the Roman bridge across the Moselle. The gates stood at the ends of the two main streets of the Roman Trier, one of which led north-south and the other east-west. Of these gates, only the Porta Nigra still exists today.

In the early Middle Ages the Roman city gates were no longer used for their original function and their stones were taken and reused for other buildings. Also iron and lead braces were broken out of the walls of the Porta Nigra for reuse. Traces of this destruction are still clearly visible on the north side of the gate.

After 1028, the Greek monk Simeon lived as a hermit in the ruins of the Porta Nigra. After his death (1035) and sanctification, the Simeonstift monastery was built next to the Porta Nigra to honor him. Saving it from further destruction, the Porta Nigra was transformed into a church: The inner court of the gate was roofed and intermediate ceilings were inserted. The two middle storeys of the former gate were converted into church naves: the upper storey being for the monks and the lower storey for the general public. The ground floor with the large gates was sealed, and a large outside staircase was constructed alongside the south side (the town side) of the gate, up to the lower storey of the church. A small staircase led further up to the upper storey. The church rooms were accessible through former windows of the western tower of the Porta Nigra that were enlarged to become entrance doors (still visible today). The top floor of the western tower was used as church tower, the eastern tower was leveled, and an apse added at its east side. An additional gate - the much smaller Simeon Gate - was built adjacent to the East side of the Porta Nigra and served as a city gate in medieval times.

In 1802 Napoleon Bonaparte dissolved the church in the Porta Nigra and the monastery beside it, along with the vast majority of Trier"s numerous churches and monasteries. On his visit to Trier in 1804, Napoleon ordered that the Porta Nigra be converted back to its Roman form. Only the apse was kept; but the eastern tower was not rebuilt to its original height. Local legend has it that Napoleon originally wanted to completely tear down the church, but locals convinced him that the church had actually been a Gaulish festival hall before being turned into a church. Another version of the story is that they told him about its Roman origins, persuading him to convert the gate back to its original form.

In 1986 the Porta Nigra was designated a World Heritage Site, along with other Roman monuments in Trier and its surroundings. The modern appearance of the Porta Nigra goes back almost unchanged to the reconstruction ordered by Napoleon. At the south side of the Porta Nigra, remains of Roman columns line the last 100 m of the street leading to the gate. Positioned where they had stood in Roman times, they give a slight impression of the aspect of the original Roman street that was lined with colonnades. The Porta Nigra, including the upper floors, is open to visitors.