The Temple Neuf in Strasbourg is a Lutheran church built on the site of the famous Dominican convent where Meister Eckhart studied. The Temple was constructed at the end of the 19th century after the old Dominican Church was destroyed during the Siege of Strasbourg on the night of 24 to 25 August, during the Franco-Prussian War. The ensuing fire also destroyed the libraries of the University of Strasbourg and the City of Strasbourg which were located at the Temple Neuf site.
The Dominican convent had been built in 1260 and in 1538 the Jean Sturm Gymnasium was attached. When Strasbourg became Protestant in 1590, the library of the Protestant seminary was transferred to the convent building.
The current church building was built from 1874 to 1877 in pink sandstone and a Neo-Romanesque style. The architect was Emile Salomon. The name 'Temple Neuf' is a translation of the German name 'Neue Kirche' that the former Dominican Church had carried since 1681, when, with the annexation of Strasbourg by Louis XIV of France, the Protestants had to leave Strasbourg Cathedral.
The Church contains the tombstone of Johannes Tauler, the famous Dominicain mystic and preacher.References:
The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood is one of the main sights of St. Petersburg. The church was built on the site where Tsar Alexander II was assassinated and was dedicated in his memory. Construction began in 1883 under Alexander III, as a memorial to his father, Alexander II. Work progressed slowly and was finally completed during the reign of Nicholas II in 1907. Funding was provided by the Imperial family with the support of many private donors.
Architecturally, the Cathedral differs from St. Petersburg's other structures. The city's architecture is predominantly Baroque and Neoclassical, but the Savior on Blood harks back to medieval Russian architecture in the spirit of romantic nationalism. It intentionally resembles the 17th-century Yaroslavl churches and the celebrated St. Basil's Cathedral in Moscow.
The Church contains over 7500 square metres of mosaics — according to its restorers, more than any other church in the world. The interior was designed by some of the most celebrated Russian artists of the day — including Viktor Vasnetsov, Mikhail Nesterov and Mikhail Vrubel — but the church's chief architect, Alfred Alexandrovich Parland, was relatively little-known (born in St. Petersburg in 1842 in a Baltic-German Lutheran family). Perhaps not surprisingly, the Church's construction ran well over budget, having been estimated at 3.6 million roubles but ending up costing over 4.6 million. The walls and ceilings inside the Church are completely covered in intricately detailed mosaics — the main pictures being biblical scenes or figures — but with very fine patterned borders setting off each picture.
In the aftermath of the Russian Revolution, the church was ransacked and looted, badly damaging its interior. The Soviet government closed the church in the early 1930s. During the Second World War when many people were starving due to the Siege of Leningrad by Nazi German military forces, the church was used as a temporary morgue for those who died in combat and from starvation and illness. The church suffered significant damage. After the war, it was used as a warehouse for vegetables, leading to the sardonic name of Saviour on Potatoes.
In July 1970, management of the Church passed to Saint Isaac's Cathedral (then used as a highly profitable museum) and proceeds from the Cathedral were funneled back into restoring the Church. It was reopened in August 1997, after 27 years of restoration, but has not been reconsecrated and does not function as a full-time place of worship; it is a Museum of Mosaics. Even before the Revolution it never functioned as a public place of worship; having been dedicated exclusively to the memory of the assassinated tsar, the only services were panikhidas (memorial services). The Church is now one of the main tourist attractions in St. Petersburg.