The Benedictine abbey Stift Melk in Lower Austria

Saturday, 2 March 2013 - 01:08 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, UNESCO World Heritage
Reading Time:  2 minutes

Park © Veleius

Park © Veleius

Melk Abbey is an Austrian Benedictine abbey, and one of the world’s most famous monastic sites. It is located above the town of Melk on a rocky outcrop overlooking the river Danube in Lower Austria, adjoining the Wachau valley.

The abbey was founded in 1089 when Leopold II, Margrave of Austria gave one of his castles to Benedictine monks from Lambach Abbey. A monastic school, the Stiftsgymnasium Melk, was founded in the 12th century, and the monastic library soon became renowned for its extensive manuscript collection. The monastery’s scriptorium was also a major site for the production of manuscripts. In the 15th century the abbey became the centre of the Melk Reform movement which reinvigorated the monastic life of Austria and Southern Germany.

Melk Abbey © Walter Hochauer/cc-by-sa-2.0 Library © Emgonzalez Museum © Effi Schweizer Melk Abbey © MatthiasKabel/cc-by-sa-3.0 Park © Veleius
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Melk Abbey © Walter Hochauer/cc-by-sa-2.0
Today’s impressive Baroque abbey was built between 1702 and 1736 to designs by Jakob Prandtauer. Particularly noteworthy is the abbey church with frescos by Johann Michael Rottmayr and the impressive library with countless medieval manuscripts, including a famed collection of musical manuscripts and frescos by Paul Troger.

Since 1625 the abbey has been a member of the Austrian Congregation, now within the Benedictine Confederation.

Read more on Melk Abbey and Wikipedia Melk Abbey. Photos by Wikipedia Commons.




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