Kastl Monastery

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Kastl Monastery is a former monastery in Upper Palatinate / Bavaria ( Diocese of Eichstätt ), which was initially settled by Benedictines , later came into the possession of the Jesuits and then the Maltese . In 1958 a Hungarian high school with boarding school was established there, which ceased operations in 2006. The monastery and school buildings have been renovated since 2017, and a branch of the Sulzbach-Rosenberg Police College is being built there.

Engraving of the monastery from the "Churbaierischen Atlas" by Anton Wilhelm Ertl, 1687


The time of the Benedictine abbey (1098 / 1103–1556)

Donor figure of Berengar I von Sulzbach (around 1080–1125) above his coat of arms with a hunting falcon under the organ gallery in the Kastl monastery

The monastery Sankt Petrus in Kastl was probably founded in 1103 (according to monastery tradition as early as 1098) by Margrave Diepold III. von Vohburg , Count Berengar von Sulzbach and Count Otto von Habsberg-Kastl in Kastl Castle, which was probably built in Carolingian times . Bishop Gebhard III , who was ousted from Constance , was also involved in the founding . , a brother of Margravine Liutgart von Zähringen . He sent the founding convention from the Petershausen monastery , which was under the influence of the reform initiated by the Hirsau monastery .

Monks from the rapidly flourishing Kastl Abbey were able to settle in Reichenbach am Regen monastery as early as 1118 , which was also founded by Margravine Luitgard von Zähringen together with her son, Margrave Diepold III. Monks from Kastl probably also settled the newly founded monasteries Plankstetten and Auhausen . Construction of the basilica began under Abbot Theodoric. On October 5, 1129 , Bishop Gebhard von Eichstätt inaugurated the choir. The church was not completed until 1182/95. In 1217 the monastery was attacked by Rupert von Stein or the Scharfenbergers and badly damaged. The restored church was consecrated by Bishop Hartwig .

The monastery was able to increase its property steadily and soon became one of the most powerful and richest monasteries in the empire. At the end of the 14th and beginning of the 15th century, the Kastl monastery became an important center of monastic renewal, which radiated to numerous monasteries in Bavaria ( Kastler Reform ). Emperor Sigismund raised the monastery to imperial status in 1413. When the Upper Palatinate was divided up after King Ruprecht's death , it was forgotten to assign the monastery to one of his sons. The decision that Ludwig should take over the bailiwick of Kastl was not recognized by his brother Johannes and so the monastery had to pay taxes twice until 1417. Finally, the emperor decided that Ludwig was allowed to exercise the imperial bailiwick over the monastery. This dispute was not settled until 1480. In 1438 a fire broke out in the monastery, destroying valuable books, including a world chronicle.

In the 16th century, the monastery began to decline rapidly. The monastery was damaged in the Landshut War of Succession and in the subsequent peasant uprisings . In 1552 a great fire broke out, which cremated almost the entire abbey. After the Reformation was introduced in the Upper Palatinate by Elector Ottheinrich of the Palatinate, the impoverished Benedictine Abbey of Kastl was abolished in 1556.

Benedictine abbots from Kastl

  • Theoderich (approx. 1104–1108) came with the founding convent from Petershausen Monastery near Constance
  • Altmann (approx. 1108–1128)
  • Ortwin (approx. 1128–1137)
  • Otto (1138–1160)
  • Gebold (1160–1172)
  • Konrad I. von Kösching (1172–1189)
  • Rupert (1189-1205)
  • Gebhard von Rieden (1205-1222)
  • Wernhard (1222-1238)
  • Konrad II of Linberch (1238-1240)
  • Conrad III. (Chuno) by Adertshausen (1240–1262)
  • Ruger von Pelchenhofen (1262–1267)
  • Friedrich I of Schinwitz (1267–1273)
  • Herald (1273-1275)
  • Friedrich II of Haintal (1275–1291)
  • Otto I. von Uttenreuth (1291–1294)
  • Albert (1293-1306)
  • Syboto (1306-1322)
  • Hermann (1323–1356), author of the Kastler rhyming chronicle; Expansion of the monastery into one of the most important economic centers in the Upper Palatinate
  • Konrad IV. Lotterbeck (1356-1378), received the right to use the pontificals in 1374; The heyday of the Kastl monastery
  • Otto II Nortweiner (1378–1399), beginning of the Kastler reform
  • Georg Kemnather (1399–1434), Gothic conversion of the Romanesque monastery church
  • Jakob Pflugler (1434–1455)
  • Christoph von Berngau (1455-1459)
  • Leonhard I. Beching called Krapp (1459–1490)
  • Ulrich Prethaler (1490–1493 / 94)
  • Johannes I. Lang (1493 / 94-1524)
  • John II Winter (1524-1539)
  • Leonhard II. Münzer von Hegling (1530–1538 / 39)
  • John III Menger (1539–1554)
  • Michael Hanauer (1554-1560)

The time of the Jesuits and Maltese (1636–1808)

Co-founder of the Jesuits, Ignatius von Loyola as a mural in the Church of St. Peter

When the Upper Palatinate was re-Catholicized (1625), Kastl Monastery was handed over by the Bavarian Electors to the Jesuits in Amberg in 1636 . After the Jesuits were dissolved and banned in 1773, the Order of Malta received the Kastl monastery in 1782 . Under the Jesuits a renovation and baroque refurbishment of the monastery church took place. Today's early classical high altar was built by the Maltese.

From nationalization to the present

After secularization , the monastery church became a parish church in 1808. In 1825, the district court was relocated from Pfaffenhofen Castle to the building that had been unused since 1803, where it remained until its dissolution in 1862.

On April 1, 1932, large parts of the complex were handed over to the Catholic Middle School Students' Association New Germany , whose sub-group “Donaugau” wanted to set up a holiday resort here. In addition to the cultivation of religious life, the association also wanted to promote “patriotic concerns and the revitalization of the German people's strength”. At Pentecost 1932 the Gauburg was consecrated, at which the Bishop of Eichstätt, Konrad Graf von Preysing , celebrated a pontifical office. After the seizure of power by the National Socialists should 1933 Sports School in Klosterburg SA be built. In 1934 it was planned to offer asylum to Austrian refugees here. On April 1, 1935, the premises of the former local court were transferred to the NSLB ; from his hands they passed on April 1, 1936 to the city of Regensburg , which set up a country school home here. The rooms of the closed tax office were handed over to the RAD on June 1, 1935 , which set up a camp for young women here. The RAD stayed here until 1945. On September 15, 1944, a refugee home for expellees was set up, which was only closed in 1951. The former Zehentstadel was also included for this purpose. The highest number of refugees was around 600 people. In the summer of 1945 a company of American soldiers moved here; All of these uses brought the monastery castle to constant decline.

Since 1958 there has been a Hungarian high school with boarding school in the former monastery buildings, which was closed at the end of the 2005/2006 school year. The former monastery has been renovated and expanded for 37 million euros since 2017 - a branch of the police college in Sulzbach-Rosenberg is being built here.

Monastery church

Klosterberg Kastl

The Romanesque monastery church was probably already largely completed when the choir was consecrated in 1129. The original church was a three-aisled basilica with a flat-roofed nave, vaulted choir and large vestibule to the west. In the Romanesque monastery church, architectural and artistic influences from the Hirsau and Cluny monasteries are combined with local building traditions.

At the beginning of the 15th century, the main nave and the side aisles received Gothic ribbed vaults. The nave was extended to the north and south by adding chapels.

The preserved coat of arms frieze is important, there are coats of arms of noble houses in the Upper Palatinate, B. were connected as bailiffs like Karg v. Bebenburg , Steinling from Edelsfeld , Brand v. Neidstein.

Epitaph by Seyfried Schweppermann

The tomb of the knight Seyfried Schweppermann , who took part in the battle of Gammelsdorf , is also worth mentioning . The grave slab was originally in the south wing of the cloister, today it is placed in the vestibule of the monastery church. The epitaph is made of red marble and measures 2 m in height and 0.8 m in width. In the middle it shows the contours of the Schweppenmann coat of arms. It consists of crossed sloping beams, above which a bucket helmet is attached. The helmet gem consists of a stylized pointed hat with an attached ring. The inscription in Gothic capitals reads “ANNO. DNI. M. CC XXX. V. II † “and indicates the year of death. In 1782, the Maltese Commander Maximilian Graf von Töring- Seefeld donated an honorary tumba for the deceased; This consists of polished black Jurassic lime, the ornaments carved in wood are set in alabaster style. The coat of arms on the cartouche falsely bears horseshoes, two eggs on top of the cup allude to the saying of King Ludwig IV .

Monastery building

The monastery buildings form a courtyard around the church choir. They were built over the foundation walls of the medieval castle. The buildings essentially show the state they were in when the Benedictine abbey was abolished or when it was restored after the monastery fire in 1552.

Princess Anna

During a stay of Ludwig the Bavarian in Kastl, one of the children who were traveling with him, Anna, between 12 and 18 months old, who was married to Beatrix von Schlesien-Schweidnitz , fell ill . The princess finally died on January 29, 1319, but was not transferred to Munich, but embalmed like a mummy and buried in the monastery. In 1715 the body was removed from the high grave and stored in an oak cupboard. The corpse preserved as a mummy rested in a shrine in "Paradise", the vestibule of the monastery church, and could be viewed. After humidity and temperature fluctuations had already affected the mummy, in 2013 it was reburied and cleaned in a special shrine filled with nitrogen for six months . In the meantime, the corpse has been brought back to “Paradise” in a specially constructed showcase that compensates for the differences in air pressure with a kind of condenser and was fitted into the previously renovated baroque cupboard on January 28, 2014 , and is supposed to be inside, with royal insignia (such as a stylized crown and coat of arms), can still be seen publicly.


  • Georg Dehio : Handbook of the German art monuments. Bavaria V: Regensburg and the Upper Palatinate , edited by Jolanda Drexler and Achim Hubel with the assistance of Astrid Debold-Kritter u. a., Munich / Berlin 1991, pp. 238-246.
  • Stephan Haering, Art. Kastl, monastery. In: Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, 3rd edition, Volume 5 (1996), Col. 1287.
  • Josef Hemmerle : The Benedictine monasteries in Bavaria (Germania Benedictina 2), Augsburg 1970, pp. 125–129.
  • Rudolf Wiesneth: Palatinate- counts places of activity. In: Hans Fischer, Manfred Kindler, Theo Männer, Peter Pauly, Otto Reimer, Rudolf Wisneth (eds.): Festschrift for the year of the Pfalzgraf-Johann year 1983 . Neunburg vorm Wald: Schmiedl 1983, pp. 60–68.

Web links

Commons : Kloster Kastl  - Collection of images, videos and audio files


  1. Karl Bosl: The Northern Gau Monastery Kastl. Foundation, founder, economic and intellectual history. In: Negotiations of the Historical Association of Upper Palatinate and Regensburg 89, 1939, pp. 3–186.
  2. ^ Stefan Helml: Castles and palaces in the Amberg-Sulzbach district . Druckhaus Oberpfalz, Amberg 1991, pp. 128–130.
  3. The monastery castle in Kastl is being rebuilt. Internet presence of the Mittelbayerische Zeitung , June 19, 2018, accessed on April 8, 2019 .
  4. ^ Mathias Conrad: Schweppermannsgrab in Kloster Kastl. In: amberg information. August 1993, pp. 27-31.
  5. ^ Bernhard Lübbers : The Kastl monastery in the first half of the 14th century. A spiritual center of the Northern Gau during the reign of Ludwig of Bavaria? In: Tobias Appl, Manfred Knedlik (Hrsg.): Upper Palatinate monastery landscape. The monasteries, monasteries and colleges of the Upper Palatinate. Friedrich Pustet , Regensburg 2016, ISBN 978-3-7917-2759-2 , pp. 42–43.
  6. Princess Anna and the history of the Schweppermannspiel , online at kastl.net
  7. https://www.br.de/presse/inhalt/pressemitteilungen/mumie-anna-104.html Church mummy Anna - The rescue of a princess , Bayerischer Rundfunk , press release of March 14, 2014.

Coordinates: 49 ° 22 ′ 9 ″  N , 11 ° 41 ′ 0 ″  E