Roggenburg Abbey is widely known for its almost unchanged Baroque building and the organ concerts that are held in the church. For over three centuries, Roggenburg was one of the 40-odd self-ruling imperial abbeys of the Holy Roman Empire and, as such, was a virtually independent state. Its abbot had seat and voice at the Imperial Diet where he sat on the Bench of the Prelates of Swabia.
In 1126 Count Bertold of Bibereck, together with his wife and his two brothers, Konrad, Bishop of Chur, and Siegfried, a canon in the diocese of Augsburg, founded the monastery. The first Premonstratensian canons came from Ursberg Abbey nearby and built the first monastery church.
In 1444 the foundation was raised to the status of an abbey. The first description of Roggenburg Abbey as reichsunmittelbar dates from 1482/5; the legal consolidation of this status took place in tiny stages over the first half of the 16th century.
In the 18th century the abbey and its dependent churches were rebuilt in the Baroque style, as they are today. The conventual buildings were rebuilt in 1732. Construction of a new church began in 1752, and lasted six years. In 1802 the monastery was occupied by Bavarian troops during the secularisation of Bavaria, dissolved, and the last abbot, Thaddäus Aigler, stripped of his office.
After dissolution in 1802 the abbey church became a parish church. The rest of the abbey's property passed into private ownership, except for the buildings, which were taken over by the Bavarian government. Until 1862 a district court and rent office were accommodated here. Later the buildings were used for a variety of functions, including as a school, a forestry office and a parochial office.
In 1986 Premonstratensians again occupied the premises. On 8 November 1992 the new community was raised to the status of an independent priory of Windberg Abbey. In the interval there had arisen a training centre for family, environment and culture, a museum and a centre for art and culture, as well as gastronomical facilities. In addition, the monastery shop sells devotional items, the monastery's own wine and various other products of their own manufacture.
The Baroque abbey church was built between 1752 and 1758 to plans by Simpert Kraemer in the shape of a cross. The hall church, with extended transept and double towers, is 70 metres long, 35 metres across and has an inside height, to the highest point, of 28 metres. Today it is used as the Roman Catholic parish church of the Ascension of the Virgin Mary.
The great Baroque organ by the Ulm organ builder Georg Friedrich Schmahl of 1761 was completely replaced in 1905 by a Late Romantic construction by the Gebrüder Hindelang of Ebenhofen. This was replaced in its turn in 1955–56, with the reuse of some registers, by an instrument by the Familie Nenninger. In 1984–86 it was extensively rebuilt by Gerhard Schmid of Kaufbeuren. The appearance of the organ by Schmahl was preserved throughout all rebuildings.References:
For centuries, the Astrakhan Kremlin was inapproachable stronghold in the south-eastern border of the Russia. The first construction of the Kremlin began in 1587-1588 under the guidance of I.G. Vorodkov, a lector of Discharge Order. He laid the first wooden fortress with powerful solid walls and towers. The place of construction was chosen on the hill, known as “Rabbit” or “Zayachii” in Russian.
During the reign of Ivan IV The Terrible and Boris Godunov the wooden fortress was rebuilt into a stone one. For the development of Kremlin walls and towers state-owned official masters were headed from Moscow to Astrakhan. For best results executives used the old, but very strong Tatar plinths which were brought from the ruins of the cities of the Golden Horde towns. Stone citadel was built by the type of Moscow Kremlin.
Next two centuries have become relatively calm for the Kremlin. Its buildings were repaired, rebuilt and renewed. However, in the beginning of 20th century after the October Revolution access to the Kremlin was closed. Instead it was transformed as a military post, where groups of Red Guards were formed the Military Revolutionary Committee was placed.
In January 1918 Astrakhan Kremlin was once again in the middle of fateful events, when supporters of Soviet power fought with Astrkhan Cossaks. They attacked The Red Army that was entrenched in the Kremlin, from roofs of nearby buildings. Serious destruction was caused to the Kremlin after this battle. In 1919 the Army was reorganized under the leadership of Kirov to protect the outfall of Volga and to defeat the White Guard troops and foreign interventionists.
Only after the end of the World War II the town opened the access to the Kremlin. At the same time Kremlin ceases to be subject of military purposes. In the mid-20th century significant restoration works were held, due to which many buildings, requiring urgent repairs were saved.
In 1974 the Astrakhan Kremlin became a museum. Nowadays citizens and tourists of Astrakhan have the access to museum exhibits of the lifestyle of the Astrakhan Garrison. Moreover they can see Casual Suits archers and scorers, elements of their weapons and ammunition, the exhibition dedicated to the history of popular uprisings and corporal punishment. In 2011, after the restoration of the kremlin, Guardhouse exposition was opened, which tells about the life of Astrakhan military garrison of the 19th century.
Construction of Assumption Cathedral began in 1699 and lasted almost 12 years. The bell tower was erected in 1710. The exterior of the Cathedral was decorated with molded brick and carved with white stone. Windows and dome heads were framed by columns in the style of Corinthian décor and semicircular arches were filled with paintings with biblical plot. Three of such arches were arranged on each side of the temple.
The cathedral was divided into two floors: the upper church is dedicated to the honor of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin. Tall and light temple was intended for ceremonial worships during warm months. The lower church which is dark lightened and surrounded by the gallery columns.