Wettenhausen Abbey

Wettenhausen, Germany

Wettenhausen Abbey was an Imperial Abbey of Augustinian Canons until its secularization in 1802-1803. Being one of the 40-odd self-ruling Imperial Abbeys of the Holy Roman Empire, Wettenhaussen Abbey was a virtually independent state. Its abbot had seat and voice in the Imperial Diet, where he sat on the Bench of the Prelates of Swabia.

The abbey, dedicated to Saint Mary the Virgin and Saint George, was founded in 1130 by Countess Gertrud of Roggenstein and her two sons for the salvation of their soul. According to an ancient chronicle, the Countess told her two sons that she would endow the new monastery with as much land as she could plow in a day. She then mounted a horse around whose neck she hung a good luck charm and succeeded in plowing a vast area. The exact date when the Abbey obtained the coveted status of Imperial Abbey is uncertain.

Wettenhaussen Abbey was dissolved in the course of the secularization of 1803 and its territory annexed to Bavaria. The library of 7,000 volumes was transferred to the library at Dillingen. The premises were thereafter used for a rent office.

In 1864 the buildings were acquired by the Dominican Sisters of St Ursula's in Augsburg, who established a school here, which today is a Gymnasium (secondary school) specialising in music and the sciences.

The former abbey church of the Assumption is now a parish church. It was built in the 12th century and altered in the 17th in the Baroque style by Michael Thumb.

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Details

Founded: 1130
Category: Religious sites in Germany
Historical period: Hohenstaufen Dynasty (Germany)

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