Speyer Cathedral

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Speyer Cathedral
UNESCO world heritage UNESCO World Heritage Emblem

Speyer - Dom - view of the east facade.jpg
Speyer Cathedral, east side
National territory: GermanyGermany Germany
Type: Culture
Criteria : (ii)
Reference No .: 168
UNESCO region : Europe and North America
History of enrollment
Enrollment: 1981  ( session 5 )
The Speyer Cathedral
The Speyer Cathedral; View from the southwest. The newer westwork stands out clearly from the older part of the building.
The Speyer Cathedral; Aerial view

As Speyer Cathedral is imperial and St. Mary's Cathedral of Speyer (official name: St. Mary's Cathedral and St. Stephan ), respectively. It is located in the Rhineland-Palatinate city ​​of Speyer and is the cathedral church of the Catholic diocese of Speyer and the parish church of the cathedral parish. After the partial destruction of Cluny Abbey during Napoleon's reign , it is the largest surviving Romanesque church in the world. He was in 1925 by Pope Pius XI. raised to the status of a minor basilica . Since 1981 he has been on theUNESCO list of world cultural heritage , and he is a protected cultural asset by the Hague Convention .


middle Ages

Speyer town seal with the cathedral, 1293

The Salian king and later emperor Konrad II probably started construction in 1025 with the aim of building the largest church in the West .

Speyer: cathedral and Jesuit church; "Cologne Drawing", 1606

Documentary written sources about the founding of the Speyer Cathedral have not survived.

A legend reports that Konrad laid the foundation stone for the Limburg monastery (near Bad Dürkheim ) early in the morning , then rode to Speyer with his wife Gisela and his entourage to build the foundation stone for the cathedral and the monastery of St. later to lay St. Guido pen . In order to bring the amount of stone and wood required for the construction to Speyer, a canal was built from the Palatinate Forest to the Rhine . This channel could mean the relocation of the Speyerbach , which was moved a few kilometers to the south in the Middle Ages at the latest to supply Speyer. A spur was deliberately chosen as the construction site . This was dry from the ground and consisted of solid rock. The fact that the cathedral “floats” on marshy ground cannot be proven geologically.

Neither Konrad II nor his son Heinrich III. saw the completion of the work. Henry III. donated the Speyer Gospels for the consecration of the high altar in 1046 . The building was only consecrated in 1061 under his grandson Heinrich IV . In research this construction phase is referred to as "Speyer I". The construction comprised a west building , a three-aisled nave with an adjoining transept . The choir was already flanked by two towers. The original apse appeared rectangular on the outside, but was rounded on the inside. The central nave of the nave had a flat ceiling, but the side aisles were vaulted - the first large vaulted building after ancient times (apart from the Aachen Palatine Chapel ) north of the Alps was built.

The Speyer Cathedral: north side with the Gothic chapels and the “Little Paradise”, the entrance from the north; "Viennese drawing", 1610

Almost 20 years after the completion of Speyer I, Heinrich IV had half of the cathedral torn down in order to rebuild it even larger: the ceiling in the central nave was removed and the building was raised by five meters. Instead of the flat wooden ceiling, the largest groin vault in what was then the Reich was built, and the wall elevation also underwent decisive changes. In the eastern part, the building was demolished down to the foundations and re-established on foundations up to eight meters thick. Only the lower storeys of the choir flank towers and parts of the transept remained. The Speyer I crypt remained almost untouched.

In the year of Henry IV's death, 1106, the new cathedral was completed: with a length of 444 Roman feet (134 meters) and a width of 111 Roman feet (33 meters) it was one of the largest structures of its time. In terms of length, the Speyer Cathedral was exceeded by the Cluny Abbey Church with its antechamber , but the enclosed space at the Speyer Cathedral is larger at over 40,000 cubic meters. These changes under Heinrich IV. Are known in research as "Speyer II", whereby in today's building a distinction is made between components of Speyer I and Speyer II.

On August 7, 1111, the day of Heinrich IV's burial in the Speyer Cathedral, and on August 14, 1111, Heinrich V granted the citizens of Speyer two privileges, which were affixed as documentary inscriptions above the west portal of the cathedral. These inscriptions have not survived, but there is a drawing of them. In 2011, on the occasion of the 950th anniversary, a copy of the texts was placed above the main portal. This copy has since been removed.

At that time Speyer only had around 500 citizens. It was probably due to political power reasons that Emperor Heinrich IV had such a large building built in what is - by today's standards - tiny town. The Roman emperors had not only secular but also ecclesiastical power. The resulting conflict with the papacy , which was just gaining strength at the time, culminated in the investiture dispute between Henry IV and Pope Gregory VII. The size and splendor of the Speyer Cathedral underscored both the political and the religious claim of the emperor.

In the night of May 5th to 6th, 1450, the cathedral burned down completely. The damage was estimated at more than 300,000 guilders . Pope Nicholas V granted a five-month indulgence in March 1451 and another three-month indulgence in March 1452 to finance the reconstruction.

Modern times

The Speyer Cathedral and the Bishop's Palace, around 1650
As a ruin; View from the northwest, around 1750

In the Palatinate War of Succession , Speyer was occupied by French troops on September 28, 1688. On May 23, 1689, the French war intendant de la Fond, in the presence of General Montclar, informed the two mayors and the councilors that, on the orders of Louis XIV, the city should be completely evacuated within six days and all movable property should be removed. In the order, however, only locations on this side of the Rhine and the fortress Phillipspurg were considered as evacuation targets. The order also assured that this was not done out of fear of the advancing German troops and that there was no intention of burning the city down. Nevertheless, General Montclar informed the then cathedral dean and episcopal governor Heinrich Hartard von Rollingen four days later that he had received the order to destroy the entire city with the exception of the cathedral. Movable property that can no longer be removed due to time constraints may be temporarily stored in the cathedral for later removal. This assurance was confirmed several times in the following days.

According to von Rollingen's report, the order also caused concern among the high- ranking officers , which is why the war director de la Fond arranged for carts to be made available so that the residents of the city could take away their belongings. However, some of the promised carts were confiscated again, which presumably led to the fact that Speyer citizens, contrary to what was initially thought, brought their furniture and household effects into the cathedral and piled it several meters high. The cathedral treasure was brought to Mainz at the instigation of the cathedral chapter .

On May 31, 1689, the city was finally set on fire. After the fire had spread to the area around the cathedral, it was possible to prevent the flames from spreading by smashing neighboring roofs and setting up water containers. However, a thunderstorm on the night of June 2 fueled the fire. Even multiple extinguishing of the burning west building could not prevent the fire from spreading into the poorly accessible east dome. In this chaos, French soldiers penetrated the cathedral and looted the upper imperial and royal tombs. Only the graves of the Salians were spared except for the grave of Henry V , as they were deeper in the ground. Apparently the soldiers had to flee the cathedral, leaving their grave implements behind. These were found when the imperial tombs were opened in 1900.

The next morning the extent of the destruction could finally be seen. The interior of the cathedral was completely burned out, the western yokes and vaults of the nave had collapsed and all that remained of the westwork was a ruin. The eastern part was also badly damaged. Only the crypt and the sacristy were spared the fire, but like the upper imperial and royal tombs were plundered. The image of Mary was also spared, as it was stored in a shrine . After the fire, it was first moved to the prince-bishop's summer residence in Kirrweiler and later, when it was clear that Speyer could not be inhabited on the orders of Ludwig XIV., To the Katherinenkirche in Frankfurt . According to von Rollingens' report to the Speyer bishop Johann Hugo von Orsbeck, there are different opinions on the question of whether the spread of the flames on the cathedral was a fateful coincidence or whether it was intended by the French , although he himself after reproducing them comes to no result. It is therefore quite possible that the promise to protect the cathedral only served to ensure that as much combustible material as possible was brought into the cathedral. However, there is no concrete evidence of this.

When in 1697 after the Peace of Rijswijk Speyer was allowed to be inhabited again, the eastern part of the cathedral was closed by a wall and restored for church services. In 1709 the miraculous image was finally brought back to the cathedral. The west building of the cathedral remained in ruins for the time being for financial reasons. However collapsed without warning in 1752 a tower of Guido congregation , who had also survived the great fire, the nave of the church Guido, whereby a man from Otterstadt was killed. As a result, to protect the Jesuit colleges to the north of the west building, first the north-western tower and in 1757 the rest of the west building, apart from the Romanesque vestibule, was demolished.

The cathedral with baroque westwork by Franz Neumann ; Lithograph, 1826, Johann Gerhard Ruland
Speyer Cathedral seen from the northeast, woodcut around 1850, August Essenwein

In the second half of the 18th century there was enough money to rebuild the western part of the cathedral. Under Franz Ignaz Michael Neumann , the son of the baroque master builder Balthasar Neumann , the gaping gap in the western part of the nave was closed in its original form in 1772–1778. The almost completely demolished westwork was replaced by a contemporary baroque facade, including the Romanesque vestibule . However, it only lasted a good 100 years. The break can still be recognized today by the use of other bricks, but the overall picture is uniform. This early act of a reconstructive preservation of monuments can be explained by the rather limited funds of the city: A baroque new building of the nave should also have resulted in the construction of the choir in order to get an aesthetically pleasing spatial impression.

Fresco in the nave in the style of the Nazarenes

In 1794, revolutionary troops ravaged the cathedral and the church was profaned. The entire interior was lost, including the image of the Virgin Mary. Under Napoleon Bonaparte , the French troops used the cathedral as a cattle shed and as a feed and material store. After the areas on the left bank of the Rhine were ceded to France under international law in the Treaty of Lunéville on February 9, 1801 , ownership of the cathedral passed to the French government. In the Concordat of 1801 and in the circumscription bull "Qui Christi Domini vices" of November 29, 1801, Pope Pius VII recognized the abolition of the Speyer diocese and the assignment of the Catholic community there to the Mainz diocese . Since the cathedral was in disrepair, it was to be demolished in 1805 as a result of a building report by the architect Peter Henrion, with the remainder of the western building being converted into a triumphal arch. However, the Speyer city council refused to cover the costs of the demolition. After the Mainz Bishop Joseph Ludwig Colmar had used his good relations with Napoleon's wife, Empress Joséphine de Beauharnais and the French Minister of Culture Jean-Étienne-Marie Portalis to convince them of the cathedral's outstanding cultural importance, Napoleon agreed to the already to withdraw the demolition order. With an imperial decree of September 23, 1806, he ordered the return of the cathedral to the Catholics of Speyer, who were also held responsible for future maintenance costs. Since at that time the Speyer cathedral community, established as a church foundation, was the only existing Catholic legal entity in the city, it took over the ownership of the cathedral from the hand of Mayor Ludwig Sonntag as the representative of the French during a public ceremony on November 3, 1806 State.

After Napoleon's defeat, the diocese was rebuilt on the left bank of the Rhine in 1817, and the cathedral no longer served only as a parish, but also as a bishop's church; It was renovated from 1818 to 1822 and rededicated in 1822. From 1846 to 1853 the painters Johann von Schraudolph and Joseph Schwarzmann created frescoes in the Nazarene style for Ludwig I of Bavaria .

The Speyer Cathedral; New construction of the west facade, 1857, print on albumen paper

On behalf of the former Bavarian King Ludwig I , the Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph I and the Duke Adolph von Nassau , the western building was rebuilt in neo-Romanesque style from 1854 to 1858 . Heinrich Hübsch , one of the most renowned architects of early historicism , oriented himself freely on the original west building by taking up the central tower and two smaller flank towers, but deviated considerably from the original in both the choice of materials and the proportions. The renovation of the west facade and the painting of the cathedral were seen as a "great work" in the 19th century. Ludwig I was convinced that nothing greater had been created than the frescoes in Speyer Cathedral for a long time.

At the turn of the 20th century there was a change in mood: Georg Dehio even cautiously complained in 1916 that the changes of the 19th century were not the smallest of the accidents that had hit the cathedral.


Westwork 1975
The central nave of the Speyer Cathedral; View from the west
Choir with altar 2016

An excavation campaign was carried out in the cathedral from 1900 to 1906. The royal and imperial graves were opened and housed in a new and accessible " imperial tomb " below the eastern nave yoke.

In 1925 the cathedral was elevated to a papal basilica .

In the middle of the 20th century the building was re-romanised. The painting from the 19th century, which is in good condition, was removed along with the plaster during the renovation from 1957 to 1961. Parts of it have been preserved in a museum. The 19 square meter frescoes from the Marian cycle remained on the wall under the north and south windows of the central nave. In addition, some frescoes were removed using a new technique in which the frescoes were drawn onto a specially prepared cloth. The experimental area for the acceptance technique developed by Otto Schulz were the ornaments that were supposed to be cut off anyway. A failed attempt in rehearsals would not have been so bad. This technique made it possible to save all the frescoes except for the fresco from the Bernhard cycle above the altar, for which there was not enough time to remove.

During this renovation, the fragile sandstone pillars were also reinforced with cement injections .

The transept gables, which were removed in the Baroque period, were restored after engravings and preserved examples of related buildings. In the area of ​​the crossing, some changes were also reversed, but had to forego the removal of the baroque reinforcements for structural reasons.

In parts of today's specialist literature, the Speyer Cathedral is presented as a prime example of a restoration to be rejected according to monument preservation criteria , although the form of the reconstruction measures is almost secured by findings and therefore not to be understood as an example of a free "Romanization".

The cathedral has been thoroughly restored since 1996. The measures will presumably last until 2015 and cost 26 million euros. Up to June 2007, 15.1 million euros had been spent on the restoration. In 1995 the "Dombauverein Speyer" was founded to provide financial support. Under the direction of Vitus Wurmdobler , some of the removed Schraudolph frescoes were restored. They can be seen since October 28, 2012 in the imperial hall of the cathedral, which was prepared for this purpose. Hedwig Drabik has been the cathedral builder since 2019, succeeding Mario Colletto.

Construction phases of the cathedral

The model of the cathedral (including cathedral immunity) in the Historical Museum of the Palatinate in Speyer gives a clear impression of the construction phases of the cathedral with regard to its external appearance up to 1689 . The model is the result of a reconstruction initiated in the first third of the 20th century by the art historian Friedrich Sprater (1884–1952) and carried out in several steps by the wood sculptor Otto Martin (1872–1950). This model reflects the knowledge of building history and art history up to around 1930.


Floor plan of the Speyer Cathedral

Technical specifications

  • Overall length: 134 m (444 feet)
  • Central nave height: 33 m (111 feet)
  • Width of the central nave: 14 m
  • Width of the nave: 37.62 m
  • Height of the east towers: 71.20 m
  • Height of the west towers: 65.60 m

Speyer Cathedral occupies a special position in Romanesque architecture , as it provided numerous impulses for architectural development throughout Central Europe.

The exterior of the cathedral is loosened up by the dwarf gallery , which, unlike the younger imperial domes in Mainz and Worms, leads around the entire building.


As was customary in the 11th century, only the crypt , the aisles and the tower rooms were to be vaulted in the Speyer Cathedral . With the extensive renovation initiated by Emperor Heinrich IV , the central nave and transept arms were also vaulted. Due to this architectural history, not only the narthex and crypt, but also the actual church interior have several different vaults beyond the crossing dome :

The side aisles have groined vaults based on ancient models. Each yoke is formed by two barrel vaults that cross each other . The apex of the vault cap is here in the middle of each yoke no higher than in the girdle arches , shield arches and arcades ; the diagonals do not have a semicircle but a pressed arched profile.

The central nave and transept arms, on the other hand, have raised groin vaults with busted vault shells and a so-called stitch. In this way, not only shield and belt arches, but also the diagonals are semicircular, of course with a larger radius than the edges of the yokes. Templates were placed on the walls to absorb the vaulting movement . This resulted in a relief of the central nave wall for the first time. The two transept bays, one for each transept arm, have ribbon ribs and are among the oldest rib vaults in Europe.

The choir has a barrel vault between the crossing and the semi-dome above the apse , which is divided by a belt arch.


Floor plan of the crypt
Look into the crypt

The crypt , consecrated in 1041, is located under the transept and the choir of the cathedral and, with a built-up area of ​​850 m² and a height of 7 m, is the largest Romanesque columned hall in Europe. The individual yokes are separated from one another by belt arches. Starting from the square of the crossing, this created the prerequisites for the development of the “bound form” in the Romanesque floor plans. This type of vault was adopted around 1040 when the side aisles were vaulted. The 42 groin vaults rest on columns with simple cube capitals. The alternating yellow and red sandstone blocks of the Haardt and Odenwald are typical of the time of the Salians and the Hohenstaufen . In front of the main altar of the crypt there is a baptismal font that was made around 1100. The entrance was originally via stairs in the central nave, which were located to the right and left of the burial place and led into an antechamber. When the burial place proved to be too small, the entrances to the crypt were relocated to the side aisles and the antechamber was filled.

Burial place

Gravestone of Rudolf von Habsburg
Conrad II's grave .

The burial place is at the eastern end of the central nave in front of the rood screen with the cross altar. The tomb was first used in 1039 to bury the founder of the cathedral, Emperor Conrad II. Since the cathedral was still a major construction site at that time, Emperor Konrad II was buried in a stone sarcophagus with iron bands between the stairs to the unfinished crypt, whereby the iron bands were supposed to prevent the sarcophagus from being looted. Just a few years later, however, the burial place proved to be too small, so that the entrances for the crypt located to the right and left of the burial place were relocated to the side aisles and the antechamber located immediately east of the burial place was filled. After the death of the last Salian emperor Heinrich V, the burial place was extended one last time. To implement the extension, the floor in the area of ​​the burial place was raised by a few meters so that Heinrich V was buried above his ancestor. After Heinrich V, Friedrich Barbarossa's second wife Beatrix of Burgundy and her daughter Agnes, Philipp of Swabia , Rudolf von Habsburg , Adolf of Nassau and Albrecht of Austria were buried in the grave.

As a result of the Palatinate War of Succession, the graves, which were close to the ground, were looted and devastated by French troops and the tombs destroyed. As a result of this devastation, the exact location of the graves was forgotten.

In the 19th century there were various considerations about the imperial tombs, when the cathedral was considered a "national monument" after the painting under Johann Schraudolph and the construction of the western building. An author not known by name wrote around 1900:

The fame of the Speyer Cathedral, one of the most powerful early medieval monuments in Germany, has always been that it hid the graves of German emperors. Anyone who entered the cathedral and wanted to visit these resting places, sacred by history, of the most outstanding rulers who adorned the German imperial throne, had to feel disappointed in a certain sense. Because in the so-called royal choir in front of the high altar, only the floor under which the emperors were supposed to rest could be shown; nothing of the original graves, sarcophagi or burial sites could be seen. "

Likewise, the high school professor Johannes Praun complained in 1898:

Nobody was able to give specific information about the location of the rulers of the Middle Ages who were laid to rest in eternal rest in the cathedral. […] Many foreigners who visit the Imperial Cathedral in Speyer every year would leave unsatisfied. "

These considerations formed the trigger for the excavation, opening and investigation of the graves, which finally took place in 1900. During these excavations, which were also documented photographically, it was found that the Salier graves were protected from looting by their location below the other graves, apart from the grave of Henry V, and were thus completely preserved. The excavations also revealed that the plundering French troops left the cathedral in a hurry, as various grave tools were found in the vicinity of the graves. After the grave goods had been recovered and the textile finds had been secured, the remains were temporarily buried after the end of the excavations, while the finds were first brought to Munich and later to the "Cathedral Treasury" of the Palatinate History Museum . In 1902 the final burial took place in the newly built crypt, the entrance to which is in the crypt.

Imperial Crypt, Speyer Cathedral
Imperial Crypt, Speyer Cathedral

The crypt also includes the former antechamber as a kind of vestibule. The grave slab of Rudolf von Habsburg is also placed there, which is considered to be the first known and traditional lifelike portrait of a person from the Middle Ages.

In addition to the graves of five bishops and a sarcophagus with other bones found in 1900 that could no longer be assigned, the graves of:

The institute of the Speyer Chair Brotherhood , a community of lay people who prayed daily for the rulers buried here , had existed at the cathedral since the Middle Ages .

Crossing tower

The crossing tower is divided into two floors, with the lower floor being slightly higher. The baroque curved roof surface remained unchanged during the restoration, as it shaped the view of the cathedral for two centuries.

Panoramic interior view of the Speyer Cathedral from the crossing

Afra chapel

Heinrich V was born on the day of St. Afra von Augsburg , an early Christian martyr, which is why a chapel in the cathedral was dedicated to this saint. It is attached to the outer north wall of the nave and is accessible from both the cathedral and the outside.

St. Afra's memorial was also the Death Emperor Henry IV., Whose coffin because of the fine imposed on him excommunication was long off for almost five years in this time still unconsecrated chapel. Only after the posthumous lifting of the ban by Pope Paschal II was Henry IV put on 7 August 1111, the fifth anniversary of his death, next to his father Henry III. in the family grave of the Salians in the cathedral.

In the inner north wall (west corner) of the chapel, the epitaph of the Ingolstadt law professor and judge at the Imperial Court of Speyer, Caspar Schober (1504–1532), transferred here from the destroyed cathedral cloister, has been embedded since 1820 . It is a very fine Renaissance work that is attributed to the Eichstatt sculptor Loy Hering and shows a resurrection scene by Martin Schongauer .

The Afra Chapel now serves as the cathedral's sacrament chapel and most parish services are held there. The original chapel was one yoke shorter. This yoke comes from the so-called “little paradise”, which was destroyed in the cathedral fire and not rebuilt when the cathedral was rebuilt. So the vaulted yoke was attached to the Afra chapel.

Double chapel

Chapel of St. Catherine with relics and opening to St. Emmeram's chapel in the basement

On the south side of the cathedral is the double chapel , begun in 1050 , the lower chapel of which is dedicated to St. Emmeram (St. Martin) and which is used as a baptistery . The upper chapel is used to display relics, including those of Saint Pirminius and Blessed Paul Josef Nardini . In addition, the heart grave and the very qualitative heart epitaph of Bishop Johann Hugo von Orsbeck (1634–1711) have been moved there.

The upper chapel, consecrated to St. Catherine of Alexandria , commemorates the birthday of a daughter of Henry III. on November 25th, the feast day of St. Catherine, one of the fourteen helpers in need . In Christian legend , Saint Catherine is a young intelligent beauty who is consecrated to virginity . Like Saint Afra, she is said to have been a king's daughter from Cyprus who lived in Alexandria in Egypt around the year 300 . She is said to have been converted to Christianity by a hermit . In the upper chapel there are, among other things, the heads of St. Pope Stephan I and St. Anastasius the Persian , the Emperor Heinrich III. brought from Rome.

The two chapels, one above the other, are connected by an octagonal central opening. Its original condition was largely restored in 1961.

Imperial Hall

The Kaisersaal is located in the west building of the cathedral at a height of about 15 meters directly above the vestibule, which is named Kaiserhalle after the sculptures located there . It was created with the construction of the neo-Romanesque westwork according to the plans of Heinrich Hübsch , which replaced Neumann's baroque westwork, which was perceived as unsuitable. A striking feature of the Kaisersaal is the large rose window, which is located directly above the main entrance to the vestibule. The oversized marble copy of the old, burnt miraculous image of the Patrona Spirensis , which the sculptor Joachim Günther created in 1777 for the then baroque westwork of the cathedral, is placed below her in the interior of the hall . For a long time, the Imperial Hall was inaccessible to the public. The restored Schraudolph frescos have been exhibited there since 2012, which were removed during the great cathedral restoration in the 1950s, mounted on hemp fabric and then rolled up and stored in the Kaisersaal. The outstanding pictorial work of the Kaisersaal is the Coronation of Mary, a fresco that was originally located in the apse calotte of the cathedral, which is why a special frame had to be built for it.

In addition, a viewing platform was set up in the southwest tower, which is located at a height of around 55.5 meters within the top window openings under the top of the tower. For this purpose the Kaisersaal was renovated and the stairways through the towers were renewed. Finally, the Kaisersaal and the viewing platform were opened on October 28, 2012 in the presence of Kurt Beck , the Prime Minister of Rhineland-Palatinate .

West facade

Patron saint of the Speyer Cathedral
The pretzel bu as a carrier
figure on the cathedral portal

The current neo-Romanesque west facade was built from 1854 to 1858 by the architect Heinrich Hübsch based on the Romanesque west facade, with the change from red and white stone to a design from the Romanesque-Salic period. In contrast to the Romanesque facade, the west facade built by Hübsch is richly decorated. In the middle of the facade, for example, there is a large rosette flanked by two arched windows, in the middle of which there is a Christ head created by the Wiesbaden artist Emil Hopfgarten . The rose window is framed by a square with the symbols of the four evangelists in the corners . These symbols, like the rest of the ornamental jewelry and all animal and small figures, were created by the local sculptor Gottfried Renn . These figures also include the carrier figure of a Speyer pretzel seller, the so-called pretzel bu , which goes back to a pretzel seller at the cathedral who was still known by name and was generally regarded as an original at the time the westwork was built.

Sculptures of the five patron saints of the cathedral can be seen above the west portal, which is located below the rose window . These are (from left to right) the arch martyr Stephen , Archangel Michael , Mary , John the Baptist and Bernhard von Clairvaux .

Dwarf gallery

Dwarf gallery

The cathedral is surrounded by a dwarf gallery. It is marked outwards by a gallery of columns. The dwarf gallery is 2.90 meters high. Their width is not the same everywhere, as it depends on the width of the respective outer walls.



With the exception of the Gothic sacristy, which retained its slate roofing of style reasons, all new roofs were held in the cathedral in transforming slate in copper running. In 1962 and 1963, the roofs were lowered to the level that the roofs probably had in the Middle Ages.

Sculptures and tombs

Epitaph of the Canon Karl Wolfgang Freiherr von Rollingen

The cathedral contains a number of important sculptures from the 13th to 19th centuries and, in addition to the epitaph of Rudolf von Habsburg, there are a number of other important tombs in the cathedral:


The main organ of the local organ building company Scherpf, built in 1961 and expanded in 1977, could be heard in Speyer Cathedral until January 4, 2009. It was dismantled and can now be heard in the parish church in Białystok ( Eastern Poland ), where it is also used by the graduates of the local music college .

General view of the new main organ
Detailed view of the playground

Main organ

On September 18, 2011, the new main organ built by the Seifert organ building company was inaugurated, which rests on a supporting structure above the singing gallery. There is also the organ's four-manual mechanical console.

The instrument has 87 registers (5496 pipes) on four manuals and a pedal. The instrument was largely planned based on the organ building tradition of the Palatinate and Southern Germany regions and also on French organs. The basis of the instrument are the fully developed principal choirs on 32, 16 and 8 foot bases. The regional influence is particularly evident in the numerous flute, string and reed parts .

Stylistically, the disposition moves between baroque and romantic. With the two swell works (II. And III. Manual), the instrument also enables symphonic organ music to be performed. The color palette is rounded off by the voices of the solo work and the auxiliary work, which add an additional sound crown to the organ. A special feature is the resounding clarinet 8 '/ 16' of the auxiliary movement, which has a separate wind sill.

The main organ was financed by a donation from the Quandt industrial family, which was made through the mediation of the then Federal Chancellor Helmut Kohl . In view of this donation, the Contraposaune 32 ' pedal register should initially be renamed Quandtarde .

The modern organ prospectus was designed by Gottfried Böhm (Cologne). The design dispenses with a (visible) closed housing; rather, the organ work is delimited by the gallery niche, so it has a “stone casing”. Due to the distance to the gallery, the depth of this room should continue to be perceptible. The organ prospectus appears as a free pipe prospectus . The prospect pipes are arranged according to their natural tone sequence and always run from top left to bottom right.

Overall, the organ should be perceived as a free-standing element or a kind of sculpture.

I main work C – a 3
1. Principal 16 ′
2. Octave major I-III 8th'
3. Octave minor 8th'
4th Pointed flute 8th'
5. Viola da gamba 8th'
6th Big dumped 8th'
7th Wooden truss 8th'
8th. Octave major I-III 4 ′
9. Octave minor 4 ′
10. Hollow flute 4 ′
11. Great fifth 5 13
12. Major third 3 15
13. Fifth 2 23
14th Octave 2 ′
15th Flauto 2 ′
16. third 1 35
17th Cornett V (from c 1 ) 8th'
18th Mixture major VI 2 ′
19th Mixture minor VI 1 13
20th tuba 16 ′
21st Trumpet 8th'
II threshold positive C-a 3
22nd Cane-covered 16 ′
23. Salicional 16 ′
24. Principal 8th'
25th Reed flute 8th'
26th Dolce 8th'
27. Vox Angelica (from c 0 ) 8th'
28. Octave 4 ′
29 recorder 4 ′
30th Nasat 2 23
31. Duplicate 2 ′
32. third 1 35
33. Mixture IV 1 13
34. bassoon 16 ′
35. Trumpet 8th'
36. Cromorne 8th'
III Swell C – a 3
37. Bourdon doux 16 ′
38. Gamba 8th'
39. Violin principal 8th'
40. Flûte traversière 8th'
41. Bourdon 8th'
42. Voix céleste 8th'
43. Flûte octaviante 4 ′
44. Hollow flute 4 ′
45. Salicional 4 ′
46. Nazard 2 23
47. Octavine 2 ′
48. Tierce 1 35
49. Flageolet 1'
50. Progressio III – IV 2 23
51. Bombard 16 ′
52. Trompette harmonique 8th'
53. Hautbois 8th'
54. Voix Humaine 8th'
55. Clairon harmonique 4 ′
56. Celesta
IV Solo work C – a 3
57. Starktongamba (from c 0 ) 8th'
58. Seraphone flute (from c 0 ) 8th'
59. Cornett VI (from c 0 ) 8th'
60. Flute expressive 8th'
61. Flûte harmonique 4 ′
62. Nazard harmonique 2 23
63. Piccolo harmonique 2 ′
64. Tierce harmonique 1 35
65. Seventh harmonique 1 17
66. Trompeta magna 16 ′
67. Trompeta imperial 8th'
68. Clarin real 4 ′

Auxiliary C – a 3
69. Bass clarinet 16 ′
70. Clarinet 8th'
71. Celesta
Pedal C – g 1
72. Contrabass 32 ′
73. Bourdon 32 ′
74. Principal bass 16 ′
75. Sub bass 16 ′
76. Subtle bass 16 ′
77. Salicetbass 16 ′
78. Octavbass 8th'
79. Bass flute 8th'
80. cello 8th'
81. Super octave 4 ′
82. Back set IV 4 ′
83. Contraposaune 32 ′
84. trombone 16 ′
85. Bassoon bass 16 ′
86. Bass trumpet 8th'
87. Cornettbass 4 ′
  • Pairing :
    • Normal coupling: II / I, III / I, IV / I, III / II, IV / II, IV / III, I / P, II / P, III / P, IV / P
    • Sub-octave coupling: III / I, IV / I, III / II, IV / II, IV / III, III / III, IV / IV
    • Super octave coupling: IV / I, IV / II, IV / III, III / P
    • Melody coupling: III / I, II / I, III / II
  • Remarks:
  1. a b c d e Full length.
  2. C – H 2-fold 8 ′, from c 0 1-fold 16 ′ length.

Organ in the royal choir

Organ on the royal choir

The organ in the Königschor was built in 2008 by the Seifert organ building company, the architects Dewey + Blohm-Schröder designed it with a three-part prospectus. It is located in the second northern arcade of the nave in front of the crossing of the royal choir. The organ case is 13 m high and almost fills the arcade. Towards the nave, the housing is flush with the piers. However, the instrument protrudes into the north aisle (opposite the entrance to the Afra chapel). The swell is located in the upper front part of the organ. That is why the roof is also provided with blinds. The three-manual game table is laid out towards the nave. To the left and right of the gaming table there are a total of 64 stop or coupling pulls.

The organ on the royal choir combines two instruments:

Choir organ

On the one hand, the instrument houses a "classic" choir organ with 34 registers (including a transmission) on three manuals and a pedal. The disposition of the individual works is based on different stylistic epochs. The swell was arranged in the French-Romantic style, while the main work was arranged more in the classical style of Palatinate organs. The instrument has a double action mechanism in addition to the mechanical one, an electrical one, so that the choir organ can be played from the general console. The normal couplings can be operated mechanically or electrically. Tuning temperature according to Bach-Fischer (modified).

I main work C – a 3
1. Praestant 16 ′
2. Principal 8th'
3. Slack douce 8th'
4th Octave 4 ′
5. Transverse calm 4 ′
6th Super octave 2 ′
7th Cornett III (from c 1 ) 2 23
8th. Mixture IV 1 13
9. Trumpet 8th'
II Positive C – a 3
10. Coppel 8th'
11. Salicional 8th'
12. Peak lull 4 ′
13. Nasat 2 23
14th Forest flute 2 ′
15th third 1 35
16. Quint 1 13
17th Mixture III 1'
18th Cromhorn 8th'
III Swell C – a 3
19th Bourdon 8th'
20th Flûte harmonique 8th'
21st Viole de Gambe 8th'
22nd Voix Céleste (from c 0 ) 8th'
23. Flute 4 ′
24. Trumpets 8th'
25th Hautbois 8th'
26th Voix Humaine 8th'
27. Clairon 4 ′
Pedal C – g 1
28. Praestant (= No. 1) 16 ′
29 Sub bass 16 ′
30th Octavbass 8th'
31. Covered bass 8th'
32. Octave 4 ′
33. trombone 16 ′
34. Trumpet 8th'
  • Pairing :
    • Normal coupling: III / I, II / I, I / II, III / II, I / P, II / P, III / P
    • Sub-octave coupling: III / III, III / I, III / II
    • Super octave coupling: III / III, III / I, III / II, III / P
  • Playing aids : Modern bus system with innovative controls, etc. a. Freely programmable control buttons for freely editable coupling, various sill crescendos (front and rear sills), etc., integrated midi recording device.

Mid-range work

In addition, there is an “instrument within an instrument” in the organ, a (independent) medium-tone work in the sense of a Gothic block work with five registers. These can be played from the first and second manual - and by means of the pedal couplings - from the pedal. According to historical models, the pipes were made with a high proportion of lead. The lowest octave was created as a short octave and is used to grasp bass figures.

Landmark for the mean-work was the John Cage Organ Project in line with that of Michael Praetorius described Gothic organ in the cathedral of Halberstadt of Nicolaus Faber from the year 1361. At the keyboard cheeks of I. and II. Manual are devices with which the key range can be limited in order to enable a particularly “fine variety” when interpreting works of early music.

I. Manual CDEFGA-f 3
I. Principal 8th'
II. Octave 4 ′
III. Mixture V 2 ′
IV. Third to the mixture 1 35
II. Manual CDEFGA-f 3
V. shelf 8th'

Bell tower and bells

The central tower of the west building has always served as a bell house. One of the few large bells from the 19th century still hangs here; it was cast in 1822 by Peter Lindemann from Zweibrücken. The remaining bells (5 to 9) were made in 1963 by Friedrich Wilhelm Schilling in Heidelberg. The clock is struck by the four large bells; Bells 4 and 3 alternate for quarter hours, bells 2 and 1 one after the other for the full hours.

Casting year
1 Maximilianus Josephus (Imperial Bell) 1822 208 5350 g 0 -4 "Maximilianus Josephus Rex Bavariae"
(Maximilian Joseph, King of Bavaria)
2 Friderica Wilhelmina Carolina 175 2600 b 0 +3 "Friderica Wilhelmina Carolina Regina Bavariae"
(Friederike Wilhelmine Karoline, Queen of Bavaria)
3 Ludovicus Carolus 147 1650 of 1 +6 "Ludovicus Carolus Dux Bavariae Princeps hereditarius"
(Ludwig Karl, Duke of Bavaria, Hereditary Prince)
4th Matthæus de Chandelle 115 600 f 1 +4 "Matthaeus de Chandelle primus episcopus ecclesiae Spirensis restauratae"
(Matthäus von Chandelle, first bishop of the restored Church of Speyer)
5 Maria 1963 95.5 601 as 1 "O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Virgo Maria"
(Oh mild, oh pious, oh sweet Virgin Mary)
6th Joseph 90.3 494 b 1 "St. Joseph, Patron of the Church, pray for us "
7th Anna 83.3 440 of the 2nd "Saint Anna, hold your hand over the families"
8th Pirminius 75 312 it 2 "Holy Pirmin, strengthen the faith that you have proclaimed"
9 Otto 66.7 217 f 2 "St. Otto, get your work "

Surroundings of the cathedral

Surroundings of the cathedral around 1730 Legend
Excerpt from the city ​​map (1730)
  • A - Cathedral and Bishop's Palace
  • K - Jesuit Church and College
  • Aa - cow gate (?)
  • Bb - Gackturm and "Riegel"
  • Cc - fisherman's gate
  • o - crossbow gate
  • p - carpenter tower
  • q - Heidentürmchen and Udenturm
  • r - Nikolausturm (Domstaffelturm)
  • s - waterer

Originally, the cathedral was not free, but was densely surrounded (see the old views given above). Most of the buildings disappeared after the French Revolution. The following are the buildings that were within the scope of immunity (cathedral freedom): South of the cathedral was the cloister with the Mount of Olives (preserved), chapter house, cross house and rectory. Behind it lay the cathedral mechanics and the archive. Farther south was the Schlegelhof of the cathedral chapter - in its place today the former Speyer State Archives (1902) - with the still preserved Auwach balustrade and directly next to it the German House, once the seat of the Teutonic Order , whose place is now the building of the Protestant Regional Church Council of the Palatinate ( 1893) and St. Stephan , one of the oldest churches in Speyer. Between Schlegelhof and Kreuzgang / Ölberg, cathedral dean Albert von Mußbach was cruelly murdered on Good Friday in 1277 .

To the north of the cathedral were the bishop's palace , the St. Nikolaus chapel, the cathedral staggered tower (city wall tower with a gate to cathedral immunity that can be reached via a staircase) and the old cathedral provost house and Jesuit church, which were converted into a Jesuit college at the beginning of the 18th century .

In the east there were several farm buildings on the city wall near the Heidentürmchen .


The Domnapf west of the cathedral, at the intersection of several streets, originally formed the border between the area of ​​the former free imperial city and the so-called cathedral immunity . A delinquent who was able to flee to Domnapf could no longer be prosecuted. The Domnapf separated the Free Imperial City of Speyer from the sovereign territory of the bishop. That is why those condemned in the imperial city fled to the episcopal city, because episcopal law applied there.

When a new bishop moved into the city, the right of escort claimed by the city ended here. On this occasion the bishop had to fill the bowl with wine, and every citizen had the right to drink from it. The Domnapf holds 1580 liters.

Mount of Olives

The Mount of Olives goes back to a foundation of the cathedral capitular Wipert von Finsterlohe († 1503) and stood in the center of the inner courtyard of a cloister built from 1505 to 1512 by Nikolaus Elser and Hans Seyfer . In the great fire of 1689, the Mount of Olives and the cathedral itself were badly damaged. The cloister was no longer restored, but fell victim to efforts in 1820 to create a free area around the cathedral. Only the Mount of Olives remained as a ruin. A roof was later put on to prevent complete disintegration. The sculptures were also added. The interior of the Mount of Olives houses a small chapel dedicated to the Archangel Michael.

Pagan tower

Pagan tower
Antique hall

The Heidentürmchen is a remnant of the medieval city wall that the bishops and citizens built as a fortification of the Speyer city , and stands east of the cathedral. It takes its name from its original location between the swampy banks of the Rhine and the built-up cathedral hill, an area that was called heath (= fallow land) in the Middle Ages .

The little Heidentürmchen was built around the year 1281 and besides the old gate is the only one of the former 21 towers of the inner city wall ring; In total, the city walls of Speyer had around 68 towers.

Antique hall

The classical antiquity hall was built in 1826, on behalf of the District President Joseph von Stichaner , based on a design by Johann Philipp Mattlener , north of the cathedral and was intended to accommodate Roman finds. However, it soon turned out to be too small for this purpose. Later cannons were set up here that were captured in the war of 1870/71 (no longer available today). Since 1930 it has been redesigned as a memorial to the 2nd Royal Bavarian Pioneer Battalion , which was formerly based in Speyer .



Today's miraculous image Patrona Spirensis
The copy of the old Speyer image donated by Domscholaster Mirbach, St. Magdalena Monastery Church, Speyer
The Speyer image is talking to St. Bernhard; Engraving by Heinrich Hugo Cöntgen (1727–1792), from Mainz

The official Latin name of the cathedral is Domus sanctae Mariae Spirae "Cathedral of Our Lady in Speyer". The Dompatrozinium falls on the Assumption of Mary (August 15th). In the cathedral, a seated, Romanesque image of the Virgin Mary was originally venerated as Patrona Spirensis , but has been replaced by a standing, Gothic statue of Mary since around 1300. The latter was very famous, the destination of many pilgrimages and was often depicted in pictures. French revolutionaries and their helpers burned them when the cathedral was sacked in January 1794. In the St. Magdalena monastery (Speyer) there is an exact copy of this earlier figure, created in 1810 by the sculptor Peter Anton Linck , on the will of the canon Karl Joseph von Mirbach (1718–1798). The Madonna, now venerated in the cathedral, is based on the old one and was designed by Pope Pius XI. , donated for the cathedral anniversary in 1930. The cathedral is an official pilgrimage site of the Speyer diocese. The main day of pilgrimage with an evening candlelight procession is always August 15th, the feast of the Assumption.

To commemorate the greeting of the Patrona Spirensis by St. Bernard of Clairvaux at Christmas 1146, four sandstone slabs with brass lettering are embedded in the central aisle of the nave. The plates read in Latin:

O clemens (Speyer) .jpg O clemens "O mild"
O pia (Speyer) .jpg o pia "o pious"
O dulcis (Speyer) .jpg o dulcis "o sweet"
O virgo (Speyer) .jpg virgo Maria "Virgin Mary"

When he entered the cathedral, Bernhard was greeted by the old picture in the Franconian language:

Ben venia, mi fra Bernarde!
"Welcome, brother Bernhard!"

He replied to this

Grand merci, mi domina!
"Thank you, my mistress!"

According to Wilhelm Eysengrein's chronicle of Speyer (1563), Bernhard, kneeling in front of the Madonna, sang the Salve Regina , whereupon the image of Mary clearly described Bernhard's “appearance as God welcomed”. But the saint, appalled at the voice, called out the following words of the Apostle Paul :

Mulier taceat in ecclesia!
" The woman be silent in the community !"

The Speyer town clerk Christoph Lehmann, who in his Chronicon of the free imperial city of Speyer around 1612 made fun of that “a painted picture should have spoken in German or Latin”, points out that the legend did not appear until 300 years after the alleged event and that contemporaries reported nothing of the alleged miracle.

European Foundation for the Imperial Cathedral of Speyer

In 1996, on the initiative of the then Federal Chancellor Helmut Kohl and the then Chairman of the Board of BfG Bank Paul Wieandt, the European Imperial Cathedral Foundation in Speyer was set up , the aim of which was to preserve the UNESCO World Cultural Monument for future generations and to finance measures for the restoration, conservation and preservation of the cathedral is. Organs of the foundation are the board of directors , the foundation council and the board of trustees ;

International Music Days Speyer Cathedral

From August to October every year, the Speyer Cathedral International Music Days are organized by the Speyer Cathedral Chapter, the SWR and the City of Speyer . In addition to hosting the International Speyer Cathedral Organ Competition, the program also includes symphony concerts and evenings with chamber music and sacred music. The festival was brought into being in 1980 when the international organ competition started on the occasion of the 950th anniversary of the laying of the foundation stone of the Speyer Cathedral. From this, the artistic director, Domkapellmeister Prof. Leo Krämer, developed the International Musiktage Dom zu Speyer with the international organ competition embedded in it.

Kaiserdom Speyer Virtual

The world cultural heritage can be viewed on the Internet in a 360 ° cathedral tour. This representation was realized with the help of so-called HDR images. The pictures were taken in the cathedral, reworked on the computer and put together again. Online visitors can move around freely with the mouse in the 3-D display and look in all directions.

The virtually created atmosphere should be realistic: Depending on the location, different audio files were stored with geodata so that Gregorian chants can be heard in the crypt and the twittering of birds can be heard in the cathedral garden. At the moment 35 viewpoints can be visited in and around the imperial cathedral. Information points offer additional information at selected locations that are particularly significant in terms of building history or liturgy.

The online initiative Kaiserdom Speyer Virtuell , which is responsible for this website, brings together all the institutions involved in the Kaiserdom. These include: Dombauamt Speyer, Dombauverein Speyer e. V., Cathedral Chapter of Speyer Cathedral, Dommusik Speyer, Dompfarrei Mariä Himmelfahrt Speyer, European Foundation Imperial Cathedral Speyer, Historical Museum of the Palatinate Speyer (exhibition of the cathedral treasure).

The initiator, source of ideas and also partner of the Kaiserdom Speyer Virtuell initiative is Peregrinus-GmbH , which publishes the church newspaper for the diocese of Speyer, Der Pilger .

Blind key model

On March 11, 2020, a 1: 100 scale model for the blind was set up in front of the cathedral .

Staufer stele

Staufer column by Markus Wolf (2018)

In memory of the Staufer , a Staufer stele by the sculptor Markus Wolf was erected on June 2, 2018 in the northern upper cathedral garden . It commemorates the three Hohenstaufen buried in the imperial crypt (Empress Beatrix of Burgundy , her daughter Agnes and her son King Philip of Swabia ) as well as over sixty court days of Hohenstaufen kings and emperors in Speyer.

100 euro gold coin

With the issue date October 1, 2019, the sales point for collector coins (VfS) is issuing a 100 euro gold coin with the theme UNESCO World Heritage - Speyer Cathedral in the UNESCO World Heritage series on behalf of the Federal Office of Administration . The design comes from the artist and medalist Bodo Broschat from Berlin. Fine gold (Au 999.9) is used as the material. The 175,000 copies are minted in the mints Berlin (A), Munich (D), Stuttgart (F), Karlsruhe (G) and Hamburg (J).

See also

List of UNESCO World Heritage Church buildings


  • Rolf Bohlender: Cathedral and Diocese of Speyer. A bibliography. 2nd added and revised Edition Palatinate State Library, Speyer 1979.
  • Herbert Dellwing : Monument topography Federal Republic of Germany . Cultural monuments in Rhineland-Palatinate. Vol. 1 = City of Speyer. Schwann, Düsseldorf, 1st edition 1985, ISBN 3-590-31031-6 ; 2nd edition 1990, ISBN 3-491-31031-8 .
  • Anton Doll: Considerations about the laying of the foundation stone and the consecration of the Speyer Cathedral. In: Archive for Middle Rhine Church History. 24, 1972, pp. 9-25.
  • Caspar Ehlers : Metropolis Germaniae. Studies on the importance of Speyers for royalty (751–1250). Goettingen 1996.
  • Walter Haas: The builders of the Speyer Cathedral. Builders - Architects - Craftsmen. In: Zeitschrift für Kunstgeschichte 29 (1966), pp. 223–240.
  • Hartmut Jericke: The Speyer Cathedral and its importance as the central burial place of the Western Empire in the 12th century. In: Journal for the history of the Upper Rhine . 154, 2006, pp. 77-110.
  • Hans Erich Kubach : The Speyer Cathedral. (The art monuments of Rhineland-Palatinate vol. 5), 3 vol. Dt. Kunstverlag, Munich 1972, ISBN 3-422-00539-0 .
  • Hans Erich Kubach: The Speyer Cathedral. 4th edition (supplemented by Günther Binding ), Darmstadt 1998, ISBN 3-534-13731-0 .
  • Claudia Moddelmog: Royal Foundations of the Middle Ages in Historical Change. Quedlinburg and Speyer, Königsfelden, Wiener Neustadt and Andernach. Berlin 2012.
  • Matthias Müller, Matthias Untermann , Dethard von Winterfeld (eds.): The Speyer Cathedral. Construction, function and reception between the Salier period and historicism. Darmstadt 2012.
  • Erwin Reidinger : 1027. Foundation of the Speyer Cathedral. Sun - orientation - bend - date of foundation - Archangel Michael . Pilgerverlag, Annweiler 2014, ISBN 978-3-942133-76-0 .
  • Willibald Sauerländer : Cluny and Speyer. In: Fleckenstein, Josef (Hrsg.): Investiture dispute and Reich constitution. Sigmaringen 1973, pp. 9-32.
  • Bruno Thiebes : Small cathedral book. Introduction to the history, construction and significance of the Speyer Cathedral. Speyer 1990 ISBN 3-87637-015-9
  • Dethard von Winterfeld : The imperial cathedrals Speyer, Mainz, Worms and their Romanesque surroundings. Regensburg 2000.
  • Thomas Wirth: Who does the Speyer Cathedral belong to? An analysis of property relations from the French Revolution to the present day. In: Archive for Middle Rhine Church History. 64, 2012, pp. 291–324, online file , (PDF; 35 p., 2.9 MB).
  • Elmar Worgull : The model of the Speyer Imperial Cathedral by wood sculptor Otto Martin in the Palatinate Historical Museum in Speyer. On the problem of historical image documents as a selective basis for reconstructed appearance of the cathedral. In: Palatinate home. Journal of the Palatinate Society for the Promotion of Science in connection with the Historical Association of the Palatinate. 2 (2007). Pp. 60-80.
  • Elmar Worgull : The model of the Imperial Cathedral in Speyer by Otto Martin. Origin and meaning. A vademecum for viewing the model of the cathedral in the Palatinate History Museum in Speyer. Wernersche Verlagsgesellschaft , Worms 2009, ISBN 978-3-88462-280-3
  • Jochen Zink: Ludwig I and the Speyer Cathedral. (Publication on Bavarian History and Culture, No. 11/86), ed. by Claus Grimm, Munich 1986.


  • The cathedral of the emperors - the Speyer Cathedral. Documentary, Germany, 2007, 28:15 min., Script and director: Alexander Wasner, production: SWR , series: Schätze des Landes , first broadcast: March 10, 2007 on SWR, synopsis by ARD .
  • The Speyer Cathedral. The Church of the Salian Emperors (Germany). Documentary, Germany, 1998, 14:30 min., Script and director: Joseph Becker, production: Südwestfunk , series: Schätze der Welt - Erbe der Menschheit , episode 104, first broadcast: December 6, 1998 on 3sat , film text with online video from SWR.

Web links

Commons : Speyer Cathedral  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Dethard von Winterfeld : Romanesque on the Rhine. Stuttgart 2001, p. 66.
  2. Anton Doll: Considerations on the laying of the foundation stone and the consecration of the Speyer Cathedral. In: Archive for Middle Rhine Church History. 24: 9-25 (1972). Here: p. 16. Erwin Reidinger believes that he determined the "foundation" of the cathedral on September 29, 1027, whereby he describes the process by which the east-facing orientation of the building in the area was determined as the "foundation" of the building. Reidinger determined the day on which the sun rises above the point on the horizon towards which the church is oriented (alleged "orientation day"). This is September 29th, and due to an axis kink under construction, the nave is directed towards the sunrise point September 25th. Since he assumed that the construction could only have taken place in the presence of the king and that Konrad II's presence in Speyer in September was only possible in 1027 according to historical news, Riedinger believed that September 29, 1027 would be the "foundation day" can. (Erwin Reidinger: 1027: Founding of the Speyer Cathedral. Orientation - Achsknick - Archangel Michael. In: Archive for Middle Rhine Church History. Vol. 63 (2011), Speyer 2011, pp. 9–37). This hypothesis is historically and historically unlikely. (Stefan Weinfurter: Review. Homepage of the Historisches Verein der Pfalz, online ). In fact, it is by no means necessary to assume that the king will be present when determining the eastward orientation of the building in connection with the setting out of the ground plan. The ritual is not the marking out of the building, but the laying of the foundation stone is the decisive church foundation rite, which takes place months after the preparation of the building site. The bend in the axis in the construction remains within the scope of the dimensional irregularities that existed in medieval buildings. In addition, it has not been proven that the orientation of church buildings was based on the sunrise points on the feast days of certain saints.
  3. Wolfgang Kauer: When Speyer was devastated. In: Die Rheinpfalz from May 31, 2014.
  4. a b c Hans Ammerich : Brief history of the city of Speyer . 1st edition. G. Braun Buchverlag, Karlsruhe 2008, ISBN 978-3-7650-8367-9 .
  5. Brief history of the cathedral. In: dom-zu-speyer.de , accessed on April 25, 2016. ( Web archive )
  6. ^ Louis XIV: When France's armies devastated Germany. In: welt.de , accessed on March 10, 2018
  7. ^ Franz Xaver Remling: Documented history of the former abbeys and monasteries in what is now Rhine Bavaria . tape 1 . Christmann, Neustadt an der Haardt 1836, p. 311 ( full text in Google Book Search).
  8. Friedhelm Jürgensmeier (ed.): Handbook of the Mainz Church History. Echter Verlag, Würzburg 1997-2002, p. 262.
  9. Thomas Wirth: Who does the Speyer Cathedral belong to? An analysis of property relations from the French Revolution to the present day. In: Archive for Middle Rhine Church History. 64, 2012, 291, 304 ff., ( Page no longer available , search in web archives: online file ), (PDF; p. 35, 2.9 MB).@1@ 2Template: Toter Link / wirth-recht.de
  10. a b Cultural Monuments in Rhineland-Palatinate, Vol. 1, City of Speyer. 1st edition Schwann, Düsseldorf 1985, ISBN 3-590-31031-6 .
  11. ^ The Rhine Palatinate of October 29, 2012.
  12. Julia-Maria Lauer: Youngest female cathedral builder in Germany: Hedwig Drabik . In: Herder Korrespondenz , vol. 73 (2019), issue 8, p. 8.
  13. see on this in the bibliography: Elmar Worgull: Das Modell des Kaiserdoms zu Speyer. (2007 and 2009).
  14. Robert Nussbaum, Sabine Lepsky: Das Gothic Gewölbe , Chapter I.4 The cross-vaulted basilica of the Romanesque , p. 20
  15. ^ Julius H. Schröder: German architecture. Gondrom Verlag, Augsburg 1990.
  16. a b quoted from Die Rheinpfalz
  17. The Story of the Chair Brothers. In his dissertation, Sven Gütermann sheds light on the work of the almost forgotten lay community at Speyer Cathedral. ( Memento from January 27, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) In: Diocese of Speyer , December 2, 2014.
  18. Sermon by Vicar General Josef Damian Szuba on the 950th anniversary of the death of Emperor Heinrich III, 2006, with reference to the relics.
  19. Information on the guided tour to the Kaisersaal
  20. To the copy of the Speyer Madonna by Joachim Günther (3rd paragraph). ( Memento from July 25, 2014 in the Internet Archive )
  21. Press release: "Coronation of the Virgin" in the dome of the Imperial Hall. The highlight of the permanent exhibition, which will open on October 28th together with the viewing platform. ( Memento from January 27, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) In: Diocese of Speyer , September 27, 2012.
  22. Press release: Focus on Schraudolph frescoes from Speyer. Three exhibitions are dedicated to the art of the Nazarenes in Rhineland-Palatinate. ( Memento from December 2, 2012 in the web archive archive.today ) In: Diocese of Speyer , March 21, 2012.
  23. Press release: Grand opening of the Kaisersaal and viewing platform. Schraudolph exhibition and viewing platform met with an enthusiastic response from visitors. ( Memento from March 25, 2013 in the Internet Archive ) In: Diocese of Speyer , October 28, 2012.
  24. Georg Friedrich Blaul : The Imperial Cathedral to Speier: Guide and memory book. Neustadt an der Weinstrasse, 1860, p. 67; Digital scan
  25. ^ Franz Xaver Remling : Nikolaus von Weis , Bishop of Speyer, in life and work. Volume 2, Speyer 1871, p. 311.
  26. Hans Ammerich: The Speyer Cathedral (=  The Diocese of Speyer and its history . Volume 6 ). Sadifa Media, Kehl am Rhein 2003, p. 18 .
  27. ddp : Two new organs for Speyer Cathedral. In: neue musikzeitung , August 15, 2006.
  28. Landry: New main organ of the Speyer Cathedral put into service. ( Memento from January 27, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) In: Diocese of Speyer , September 18, 2011.
  29. See music and theology with a critical note
  30. To the disposition of the new main organ
  31. dbap.net: New organ for the royal choir in the Kaiser- und Mariendom, Speyer
  32. More information about the choir organ
  33. ↑ In detail on the mean-tone work
  34. The bells. In: dom-speyer.de , accessed on April 25, 2016.
  35. Private page on the Speyerer Antikenhalle in: dsm1918.de
  36. pilgrimage. In: Speyer Cathedral. Retrieved April 19, 2019 .
  37. Kaiserdom Speyer virtual. with organ music.
  38. The Speyer Cathedral to touch
  39. Speyer 2018 on stauferstelen.net. Retrieved June 3, 2018.

Coordinates: 49 ° 19 ′ 2 "  N , 8 ° 26 ′ 33"  E