Buxheim Charterhouse was formerly a monastery of the Carthusians (in fact, the largest charterhouse in Germany) and is now a monastery of the Salesians.
The estate of Buxheim belonged from the mid-10th century to the chapter of Augsburg Cathedral, who in about 1100 founded a house of canons here, dedicated to Our Dear Lady.
In 1402 however, after a long period of decline, in an extreme move to preserve it the then provost, Heinrich von Ellerbach, gave the establishment to the Carthusians, a move which proved extremely successful in reviving Buxheim both spiritually and economically. Its wealth however drew the hostile attentions of the nearby city of Memmingen, which occupied it in 1546 during the Reformation, and impounded its property. Prior Dietrich Loher was able however by skilful diplomacy to obtain the favour of Emperor Charles V, and in 1548 the monastery was declared reichsfrei, and thus independent of all territorial authority save that of the Emperor himself, under whose protection it stood; it was the only charterhouse in Germany ever to be granted that status.
It was dissolved in the secularisation of 1802, when ownership passed first to the Counts of Ostein, who allowed the community to remain, and then in 1809 by inheritance to the Counts Waldbott von Bassenheim, who from 1812 used the premises as a castle. In 1916 the state took over the buildings, which in 1926 were acquired by the Salesians.
Parts of the monastery buildings were refurbished by Dominikus Zimmermann in the Rococo style: the monastic church, St. Anne's chapel in the cloisters, and also the nearby parish church. As a masterpiece of Baroque carving, the almost entirely complete choir stalls in the chapel with their rich ornament and figurative decoration, known as the Buxheim Carvings.
Created between 1687 and 1691 by the Tyrolean sculptor and woodcarver Ignaz Waibl, are of international significance. The carvings have an interesting history, having been sold to a Governor of the Bank of England and subsequently installed in St. Saviour's Hospital, Osnaburgh Street, London, whilst that property was the main apostolic work of the Community of the Epiphany, an order of Anglican nuns. The sisters later withdrew to Cornwall and their work was taken over by another Anglican order, the Community of the Presentation. In 1960 the sisters relocated to their other convent at Hythe, Kent, taking the carvings with them. The community dwindled in size and was forced to hand the hospital over to a charitable trust. The sisters decided to return the carvings to Buxheim, which was finally achieved in the early 1980s. the Reverend Mother of the Presentation sisters attended a special repatriation ceremony, and was awarded the Freedom of the City of Buxheim – only the second person ever to receive that honour.References:
Royal Palace of Naples was one of the four residences near Naples used by the Bourbon Kings during their rule of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies (1734-1860): the others were the palaces of Caserta, Capodimonte overlooking Naples, and the third Portici, on the slopes of Vesuvius.
Construction on the present building was begun in the 17th century by the architect Domenico Fontana. Intended to house the King Philip III of Spain on a visit never fulfilled to this part of his kingdom, instead it initially housed the Viceroy Fernando Ruiz de Castro, count of Lemos. By 1616, the facade had been completed, and by 1620, the interior was frescoed by Battistello Caracciolo, Giovanni Balducci, and Belisario Corenzio. The decoration of the Royal Chapel of Assumption was not completed until 1644 by Antonio Picchiatti.
In 1734, with the arrival of Charles III of Spain to Naples, the palace became the royal residence of the Bourbons. On the occasion of his marriage to Maria Amalia of Saxony in 1738, Francesco De Mura and Domenico Antonio Vaccaro helped remodel the interior. Further modernization took place under Ferdinand I of the Two Sicilies. In 1768, on the occasion of his marriage to Maria Carolina of Austria, under the direction of Ferdinando Fuga, the great hall was rebuilt and the court theater added. During the second half of the 18th century, a 'new wing' was added, which in 1927 became the Vittorio Emanuele III National Library. By the 18th century, the royal residence was moved to Reggia of Caserta, as that inland town was more defensible from naval assault, as well as more distant from the often-rebellious populace of Naples.
During the Napoleonic occupation the palace was enriched by Joachim Murat and his wife, Caroline Bonaparte, with Neoclassic decorations and furnishings. However, a fire in 1837 damaged many rooms, and required restoration from 1838 to 1858 under the direction of Gaetano Genovese. Further additions of a Party Wing and a Belvedere were made in this period. At the corner of the palace with San Carlo Theatre, a new facade was created that obscured the viceroyal palace of Pedro de Toledo.
In 1922, it was decided to transfer here the contents of the National Library. The transfer of library collections was made by 1925.
The library suffered from bombing during World War II and the subsequent military occupation of the building caused serious damage. Today, the palace and adjacent grounds house the famous Teatro San Carlo, the smaller Teatrino di Corte (recently restored), the Biblioteca Nazionale Vittorio Emanuele III, a museum, and offices, including those of the regional tourist board.