Allerheiligen Abbey Church

Schaffhausen, Switzerland

Kloster Allerheiligen (All Saints abbey) is a former Benedictine monastery in Schaffhausen. Today the convent houses the Museum zu Allerheiligen, an art museum and a natural history museum, the monastery garden, and the buildings of the former convent, including the library.

History

The development of the city of Schaffhausen is closely linked to the Nellenburg noble family who became extinct around 1100 AD. Various archaeological finds and the building of the present church of St. John date back to around 1000 AD. The Earls von Nellenburg recognized the importance of the geographical area as a transshipment of goods on the Rhine river, and the order to bypass the Rheinfall waterfalls, controlled by the Wörth Castle.

The monastery was founded by Eberhard von Nellenburg in 1049, on 22 November it was consecrated by Pope Leo IX, and in 1064 the construction works were completed. The church was dedicated to the Saviour, the Holy Cross, the Virgin Mary and All the Saints. In 1067 count Eberhard strengthened his rule in Schaffhausen, and received by Pope Alexander II comprehensive protection and sovereign rights for the monastery. Allerheiligen became, instead of the Reichenau Abbey, the new grave lay by the founding family, and various renovations and additions. Eberhard became after 1075 a Benedictine monk in the abbey, and died there in 1078 or 1079. He was buried in the outdoor crypt that was built for the family.

In the so-called Investiture Controversy conflict between the Roman Catholic church in Rome and the secular power, the pope loyal Count Burkhard von Nellenburg, the son and heir of Eberhard, conformed in 1080 all of the rights of the monastery. The monastery was directly subordinate to the Pope, and received the vast estate of the family, the free election of the abbot, and the mint money market as well as the town of Schaffhausen. Thus the abbot became the new lord of the city. Burkhard remained the monastery's Vogt, and motivated the Abbot William to join with some monks from the Hirsau Abbey, to reform the monastery on the model of Hirsau.

After more than four centuries of economic and political decline, Michael Eggendorfer, the last abbot of the monastery, initiated the last renovations in 1521/22. During the Reformation in Switzerland, the abbey was abolished, and the Cathedral became the second main city church in 1524.

Convent buildings

The first extensions of the abbey included the east wing of the convent building with the chapter house of the monks on the ground floor, and a dormitory with latrines upstairs. In the west, the monastery gate, a two-storey house for guests and lay brothers were added, built around the three-aisled Basilica with a three-apsed choir, a transept and a double tower facade to the west. The westerly courtyard was also built in the foundation era, preceded by a single goal, which was flanked by two chapels. About this door system, there was possibly the entrance to the Nellenburg Palatinate, once the residence of the family.

The monastery was modeled on the church buildings of the Cluny Abbey. The monastery consists of a cloister, the garden, the two-winged, two-storey convent buildings and the domestic buildings. In the mid-1460s Abbot Berchtold Wiechser initiated the construction of the Bindhaus (cooperage) over the large wine cellar. In 1521/22 a new convent house with monk cells instead of the old hospital, as well as a Beguine house were built. In 1529 the convent buildings were redeveloped as houses. Twelve years later, the city council moved the municipal cemetery in the former eastern cloister garden. In the winter of 1543, a boys' school was established. The cloister garden was used from 1577 to 1874 as the cemetery for the privileged citizens of Schaffhausen.

Münster Schaffhausen

Eberhard von Nellenburg also financed the monastery's church third central tower to the west, extended with a new chancel choir grown in the apex outdoor crypt, as a burial chamber, and a subsequent courtyard. Around 1090, the church was partially demolished to make place for a larger Cathedral. Late Romanesque expansions were added between 1150 and 1250. Abbot Ullrich initiated the construction of the cathedral tower, the present herb garden, the building of the hospital and the novitiate, as well as a loggia. The St. Johann's chapel was vaulted, and upstairs was a further chapel. The ornately decorated semi-circular arched lunettes of the former upper chapel, are among the finest examples of Romanesque architectural sculpture in the monastery, and are on display in the museum. In 1521/22 the old St. Mary's chapel was rebuilt into the Annakapelle. In addition, the small cemetery chapel in the now Oswaldkapelle, and the abbey's chapel of St. Michael and Erhard were built.

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Details

Founded: 1049
Category: Religious sites in Switzerland

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

Rating

4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Urs Goessi (3 years ago)
Nice cloister and a well kept herbal garden.
Violette Serres (3 years ago)
Very peaceful. It's very empty but it gives the place it's charm. The cloisters are nice.
Thanate Apichartpornanunt (4 years ago)
Beautiful place
Michael Kessler (5 years ago)
A nice and quiet place in the heart of Schaffhausen
Beate Welnetz (5 years ago)
Beautiful Museum
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