Lilienfeld Abbey was founded in 1202 by Leopold VI, Duke of Austria and Styria, as a daughter house of Heiligenkreuz Abbey. Successive abbots acted as councillors to the rulers of Austria, and the abbey became wealthy as a result of this valuable connection.
Abbot Matthew Kollweis (1650-1695) turned the monastery into a fortress during the Turkish advance against Vienna in 1683, installing a garrison and giving shelter to a large number of fugitives.
In the 17th century the medieval buildings were extended by Baroque additions. In the first half of the 18th century the tower, library and church interior and furnishings were also refurbished in the Baroque style.
The abbey was suppressed by Emperor Joseph II in 1789, but although the library, archives and portable valuables were removed, on the death of Joseph II it was reopened by Emperor Leopold II as early as 1790.
In 1810 much of the abbey was destroyed in a fire, but was rebuilt under Abbot Johann Ladislaus Pyrker, who later became the Patriarch of Venice (1820-26) and eventually Archbishop of Eger.
As part of his endowment, Duke Leopold VI, Duke of Austria, granted the Abbey lands in and around Pfaffstätten, between Baden and Gumpoldskirchen, upon which the monks erected a walled estate. This estate, the Lilienfelderhof, comprising a gothic church, manor house, and numerous other buildings, was acquired in 2006 by the Kartause Gaming Private Foundation via a 99-year leasehold. The property and its vineyards are currently in the process of being restored and revitalised.References:
The Holy Trinity Column in Olomouc is a Baroque monument built in 1716–1754 in honour of God. The main purpose was a spectacular celebration of Catholic Church and faith, partly caused by feeling of gratitude for ending a plague, which struck Moravia between 1713 and 1715. The column was also understood to be an expression of local patriotism, since all artists and master craftsmen working on this monument were Olomouc citizens, and almost all depicted saints were connected with the city of Olomouc in some way. The column is the biggest Baroque sculptural group in the Czech Republic. In 2000 it was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list.
The column is dominated by gilded copper sculptures of the Holy Trinity accompanied by the Archangel Gabriel on the top and the Assumption of the Virgin beneath it.
The base of the column, in three levels, is surrounded by 18 more stone sculptures of saints and 14 reliefs in elaborate cartouches. At the uppermost stage are saints connected with Jesus’ earth life – his mother’s parents St. Anne and St. Joachim, his foster-father St. Joseph, and St. John the Baptist, who was preparing his coming – who are accompanied by St. Lawrence and St. Jerome, saints to whom the chapel in the Olomouc town hall was dedicated. Three reliefs represent the Three theological virtues Faith, Hope, and Love.
Below them, the second stage is dedicated to Moravian saints St. Cyril and St. Methodius, who came to Great Moravia to spread Christianity in 863, St. Blaise, in whose name one of the main Olomouc churches is consecrated, and patrons of neighbouring Bohemia St. Adalbert of Prague and St. John of Nepomuk, whose following was very strong there as well.
In the lowest stage one can see the figures of an Austrian patron St. Maurice and a Bohemian patron St. Wenceslas, in whose names two important Olomouc churches were consecrated, another Austrian patron St. Florian, who was also viewed as a protector against various disasters, especially fire, St. John of Capistrano, who used to preach in Olomouc, St. Anthony of Padua, a member of the Franciscan Order, which owned an important monastery in Olomouc, and St. Aloysius Gonzaga, a patron of students. His sculpture showed that Olomouc was very proud of its university. Reliefs of all twelve apostles are placed among these sculptures.
The column also houses a small chapel inside with reliefs depicting Cain's offering from his crop, Abel's offering of firstlings of his flock, Noah's first burnt offering after the Flood, Abraham's offering of Isaac and of a lamb, and Jesus' death. The cities of Jerusalem and Olomouc can be seen in the background of the last mentioned relief.