Freising Cathedral

Freising, Germany

Freising Cathedral, also called Saint Mary and Corbinian Cathedral, is a romanesque basilica. An early church was present on the site by AD 715, consecrated as episcopal church by Boniface in 739. A triple nave was constructed in 860 and rebuilt after a fire in 903. The church was completely destroyed by fire on Palm Sunday, 5 April 1159. Construction of the current romanesque building started in 1159 and completed in 1205. The romanesque wooden ceiling was replaced by a gothic vault in 1481–3.

The tomb of St. Corbinian, the patron saint of the bishopric, is located in the four-nave crypt of the cathedral. In the centre of this crypt is the Bestiensäule ('pillar of beasts'), one of the most distinguished sculptures in Europe.

Substantial reconstruction was undertaken during the Baroque period, beginning in 1619. A complete renovation begun in 1621, and its nearly completed high altar was consecrated on 1 January 1624. In 1623, Prince-Bishop Veit Adam von Gebeck of Freising commissioned Hans Rottenhammer (1564-1625) to paint a vast altarpiece. Rottenhammer was near the end of his career (and life) and possibly an alcoholic, and his work was delayed. The commission was transferred to Rubens at an unknown time. Rubens completed the painting of the Woman of the Apocalypse, a subject that had been very popular in German iconography since the 15th century. The finished painting is first mentioned in 1632, when it was evacuated from the advancing Swedish troops. It is now kept in the Alte Pinakothek, Munich.

Another renovation was undertaken in 1724, in view of the church's thousand-year anniversary. The rococo decoration of the interior created is a work of Cosmas Damian Asam and Egid Quirin Asam. In the 1920s, some of the frescoes were painted over and severely damged. These were restored in 2006.

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Address

Domberg 36, Freising, Germany
See all sites in Freising

Details

Founded: 1159-1205
Category: Religious sites in Germany
Historical period: Hohenstaufen Dynasty (Germany)

Rating

4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Greg Bright (12 months ago)
A magnificent Cathedral set on the top of a high hill in the centre of Freising. The building is magnificent both internally and externally with views of the Alps. The walk from the town is long and steep but so worthwhile. Not to be missed.
Antonijo Runjak (13 months ago)
Ok
BradJill Travels (2 years ago)
Saint Mary and Corbinian Cathedral (Dom) is the feature attraction in Freising. Situated upon the hillside compound that overlooks the town, the church history dates all the way back to the 8th century and features Romanesque, Gothic, Baroque and Rococo architectural aspects. This is a must-see place for those visiting this quaint little town outside of Munich. The church is unassuming from the outside, appearing to simply be a building entrance in the back corner of the small open courtyard. However, upon entry you are quickly treated to a remarkable interior. Starting with the nave, you will see heavy use of stucco work and frescos adorning the ceiling, wall and nave columns. This is the work of the locally famous Asam Brothers, Bavarian Baroque masters from the early 18th century. Simply put, the church is beautiful and worth taking a seat to enjoy for a few minutes. The pulpit is very attractive. As is the main altar and painting, aisle altars and side chapels. There is also a basement crypt with the tomb of St. Corbinian for which the cathedral is known. Keep you eyes open as well for the pillar of Beasts (Bestiensäule), a column carved in the Middle Ages that is considered one of the most distinguished sculptures in Europe. Overall, we were very impressed with the Saint Mary and Corbinian Cathedral (Dom). This is a Barque and Rococo gem in Feisling, as beautiful as any of the major churches that we visited in Munich.
TH3 TR/\V1R (2 years ago)
Well located place. The inside of the cathedral is overwhelming and reflects the prosperity of Cardinal seats of the Catholic church quite well. Good for people who are interested in religion and history. Easy to reach via public transport from the surrounding area. Recommended.
Rachael Redjou (3 years ago)
Beautiful church but very unassuming from the outside. Problem is, unless you knew it was there, it is hard to find. They are almost no signs outside the city center and within the church complex itself, there are no signs for the entrance, exit, etc. Inside, the art is amazing with incredible statuary and catacombs. The town is also very nice, with a nature walk and interesting art throughout the streets.
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