Antoniterkapelle (Mainz)

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The Antoniterkapelle and the Antoniterhaus in Mainz were built in the 14th century as the Antonihof. The area on the outskirts of early medieval Mainz lay fallow for a long time after the Isis cult was no longer practiced in the sanctuary of Isis and Mater Magna towards the end of the 3rd century AD. In the middle to the end of the 13th and 14th centuries, when Mainz was a free city , many monasteries were built in Mainz, of which the churches can still be seen today. The Augustinian Hermit Monastery, the Augustinian Monastery (1260), the Carmelite Monastery (1290), the Charterhouse behind St. Alban's Abbey in front of Mainz (1330) and the Antonite Monastery, later Armklara.

Antonite Cross at the entrance to the chapel


In terms of style, Mainz received suggestions from Cologne and Freiburg, as well as from the Lahn region, which it processed and developed further. The Antoniterkapelle was built in the Gothic style. The portal of the Antoniterkapelle still bears the symbol of the order, the T-shaped Antoniterkreuz. The chapel consists of a nave, which was added to the two-bay choir with a five-eighth end. The restored vault paintings show saints in drawn tracery frames. This is the only original painting cycle in a medieval Mainz church.


Antoniterkapelle from Klarastraße

The building ensemble was on the corner of Rosengasse and Klarastrasse. The Rosengasse, formerly Auf der Rose , was named after the house of the virgins in the roses on the corner of Pfandhausstrasse. Today the street is named after Kolping . The long side was on the former Armklaragasse. The place was called Am Saukopf long before , because pigsties were located here until the middle of the 17th century. Above the main entrance of the neighboring Jüngerer Dalberger Hof , three pigs' heads were carved as a souvenir, and more or less instead of the street signs that didn't exist at the time.


The original chapel was built around 1134. In 1332 a Mechtildis donated the chapel, which had been built since 1330 and consecrated to Saint Anthony , to Brother Nikolaus von Andernach and thus became the founder of the later monastery. Nicholas died in 1333 and was buried in the church. Antoniter existed in Mainz since 1324.


The Antonite Canons took care of the sick who suffered from the so-called Antoniusfeuer (ergot fire). For this purpose, they operated a bathing room in their Thönes or Thöngeshof . In 1528 the Preceptor of the Antoniterhaus zu Höchst ceded the monastery to Elector Albrecht von Brandenburg ; shortly thereafter, the Antonihof was closed due to a lack of young people. The seven friars who had just arrived and were expelled from the Cistercian monastery of Haina by the Landgrave of Hesse could not save the monastery either. When Abbot Ditmar died, the remaining monks were housed elsewhere. Since 1574 it was used as an official place by the messenger of violence or Walpoden (Walpot). Elector Daniel Brendel von Homburg left the monastery buildings and the church to the Walpoden who was then using the church as a stable.

Poor Clares

Portal figure of St. Clare by Burkard Zamels

From 1619 the monastery was used by the nuns of the 2nd order of St. Francis, commonly known as the Poor Clares . Franciscan general Nikolaus Vigerius of Cologne sent four nuns from the Marientempel monastery in Glockengasse in Cologne to Mainz. These are the poor Poor Clares, who follow an even stricter form of the rule and thus set themselves apart from the rich Poor Clares who have lived in Mainz since 1272 . The founder of the order of both currents, Saint Clare of Assisi, can still be seen today as a sculpture at the entrance from Klarastrasse. Elector Johann Schweikhard von Kronberg left the Antoniterkloster to them on condition that the Poor Clares found a replacement apartment for the Walpoden. In 1700 the nuns built a four-wing complex in the southwestern connection to the church and in 1726 the three-part monastery building on Klarastrasse, which is still known today. At that time, the monastery received permission to partially include the Töngesplatz in front of the monastery in the new building.

Like all monasteries, the Arm-Klarenkloster was abolished during the Napoleonic rule.

Later use

A midwifery school with a maternity hospital later integrated continued the charitable work of the Poor Clares from 1806 to 1903. There was also a so-called trill, a forerunner of the baby hatch, for children who should be abandoned. Other uses were letter post, savings bank and the building department of the city of Mainz and again a medical station. For a time the chapel was used for Anglican and, since 1876, for Old Catholic worship.

During the Second World War the church burned down in 1942, but was renovated in 1948. It was designated as the new chapel of the Kolping House opposite at that time. During the restoration, a number of figures from the time of construction were uncovered and restored on the vault.

Todays use

The current buildings are used by the diocese of Mainz as the seat of the church music institute . Probably for this reason the Antonius Chapel is equipped with one of the most diverse organs in Mainz. Almost every Sunday there is a service in Portuguese in the Antonius Chapel. As an intimate inner-city space, the chapel is also popular for weddings.

Every third Tuesday of the month there is a celebration especially for mourners in the mourning room in the Antonius Chapel. The sponsor is the Catholic Dean's Office in Mainz-Stadt from the Habitat-Oriented Pastoral Care project.


  • Quarterly issues for culture, politics, economics, history; Ed .: City of Mainz; Verlag Hermann Schmidt Mainz 22nd year 2002
  • Karl Georg Bockenheimer : Mainz and surroundings , J. Diemer Mainz publishing house, 1880

Web links

Commons : Antoniterkapelle  - Collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Portuguese-speaking Catholic parish in Mainz

Coordinates: 50 ° 0 ′ 6 "  N , 8 ° 16 ′ 6"  E