Edelstetten monastery, dedicated to Saints John the Baptist and St. Paul was founded in 1126. According to the tradition the founder and first abbess was Mechthild an Augustinian choir woman. Mechthild of Dießen arrived in 1153 and was appointed abbess by the Bishop of Edelstetten to reform the pin. However, after six years, she returned unsuccessful back there. In 1460, the monastery was incorporated into the Margraviate Burgau. Buildings were destroyed three times. The first time in the 14th century, the second time in 1525 during the Peasants War and the third time in the Thirty Years' War, in 1632 by the Swedes.
The present Baroque style building was built in the heyday of the monastery, approximately from 1680 to 1725. It was designed by the architect Michael Thumb. In the period 1709–1712 the south wing of the monastery, the present church of St. John Baptist and John the Evangelist, was designed by Father Christoph Vogt from the Benedictine monastery of Ottobeuren. Completion of the interior lasted until well into the second half of the 18th century.
In 1783, the monastery was raised to the status of imperial abbey. In 1803 the Abbey was given to the Prince Ligne dominion Edelstetten as compensation for the loss of the county Fagnolle in Hainault. Then in 1804/1805 it passed to Prince Nikolaus II. Esterházy de Galantha and it remains in his family today.
The interiors of many rooms from the 18th century are decorated with significant stucco work. An example is the Chinese Hall. The Abbey church is still the parish church of Edelstetten town. while the former chapter house museum. The Abbey crib is decorated with fresco paintings of biblical scenes. The seven scenes are: Adoration of the Shepherds, Adoration of the Magi, Presentation in the Temple, Massacre of the Innocents, house in Nazareth, the twelve year old Jesus in the Temple and Wedding at Cana.References:
The Church of Our Lady before Týn is a dominant feature of the Old Town of Prague and has been the main church of this part of the city since the 14th century. The church's towers are 80 m high and topped by four small spires.
In the 11th century, this area was occupied by a Romanesque church, which was built there for foreign merchants coming to the nearby Týn Courtyard. Later it was replaced by an early Gothic Church of Our Lady before Týn in 1256. Construction of the present church began in the 14th century in the late Gothic style under the influence of Matthias of Arras and later Peter Parler. By the beginning of the 15th century, construction was almost complete; only the towers, the gable and roof were missing. The church was controlled by Hussites for two centuries, including John of Rokycan, future archbishop of Prague, who became the church's vicar in 1427. The roof was completed in the 1450s, while the gable and northern tower were completed shortly thereafter during the reign of George of Poděbrady (1453–1471). His sculpture was placed on the gable, below a huge golden chalice, the symbol of the Hussites. The southern tower was not completed until 1511, under architect Matěj Rejsek.
After the lost Battle of White Mountain (1620) began the era of harsh recatholicisation (part of the Counter-Reformation). Consequently, the sculptures of 'heretic king' George of Poděbrady and the chalice were removed in 1626 and replaced by a sculpture of the Virgin Mary, with a giant halo made from by melting down the chalice. In 1679 the church was struck by lightning, and the subsequent fire heavily damaged the old vault, which was later replaced by a lower baroque vault.
Renovation works carried out in 1876–1895 were later reversed during extensive exterior renovation works in the years 1973–1995. Interior renovation is still in progress.
The northern portal is a wonderful example of Gothic sculpture from the Parler workshop, with a relief depicting the Crucifixion. The main entrance is located on the church's western face, through a narrow passage between the houses in front of the church.
The early baroque altarpiece has paintings by Karel Škréta from around 1649. The oldest pipe organ in Prague stands inside this church. The organ was built in 1673 by Heinrich Mundt and is one of the most representative 17th-century organs in Europe.