St. Georgen Abbey

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St. Georgen Abbey: aerial view

The St. Georgen Abbey is a former Benedictine monastery in the municipality of St. Georgen am Längsee in Austria . It celebrated its 1000th anniversary in 2003.


The monastery was founded between 1002 and 1008 by Countess Wichburg , wife of Count Ottwin von Sonnenburg ( Pustertal ), as a Benedictine monastery, built on the site of a Georgskirche and consecrated in 1023 by Archbishop Hartwig of Salzburg . The monastery is mentioned for the first time in a founding report from the early 11th century that is exhibited in the Carinthian State Museum.

In 1122 the monastery was subordinated to the Archdiocese of Salzburg . Since only members of the nobility were admitted to the monastery, the monastery assets grew rapidly at first. New buildings were required in the middle of the 12th century. In 1259 the monastery was looted in a war, as well as in the Turkish Wars in 1473.

During the Counter-Reformation, the number of sisters in the monastery - the continued existence of which had previously been in jeopardy - was increased again, and in 1654, the builder Pietro Francesco Carlone began to redesign and significantly enlarge the complex in the Baroque style . In 1720 the baroque buildings were raised by one floor and the church was redesigned in baroque style.

In 1783 the monastery was abolished by Emperor Joseph II and initially administered by the religious fund. At the auction in 1788, Maximilian Thaddäus von Egger won the bid for 163,100 guilders and founded the monastery complex as the new headquarters of the Counts of Egger , who owned the facility until 1884. The interior was furnished like a castle and an English garden with an orangery was laid out. In the 1880s, a hotel with over 70 beds was established.

In 1909 Gustav Sichl acquired the castle, which was bought in 1935 by the Mariannhill missionaries and from 1938 onwards it also became the location of a seminary for the diocese of Gurk. In 1940 the monastery was confiscated and assigned to the Reichsgau Carinthia; the seminary remained in the monastery until 1942. The library holdings of 10,000 volumes had to be delivered to the Klagenfurt Public Study Library, but were restituted after the end of the war. In 1943 the Todt Organization bought the monastery from the Province of Carinthia and used it as a hospital. After the end of the war, the British set up a pulmonary hospital for displaced persons .

In 1948 the Mariannhill missionaries got the building back. It has been in the possession of the Gurk diocese since 1959 , which today runs an educational center with an attached catering and accommodation facility.

Building description

Former monastery

It is a large, predominantly baroque complex around a courtyard that is divided into two by the church building.

The north-west wing with its courtyard-side Renaissance arcade was built in 1546, originally two-story, expanded in the 20th century. The other three sides of the complex, with pillar arcades facing the courtyard, were built on two floors by Peter Franz Carlone from 1654 to 1658; In 1728 they were raised by one floor. In the east wing there is a room set up as a chapel. Otherwise nothing has been preserved of the furnishings and of the former baroque fresco decorations inside the building. In and around the pen there are some inscriptions and reliefs from Roman times.

Parish Church of St. George

Southeast view of the church
inside view
View towards the organ gallery
The high altar


The former collegiate church is a Gothic building from the 14th century with a Romanesque (or imitating Romanesque?) Portal on the north side. The late Gothic keel arch portal with pinnacles and crabs on the south side , formerly leading to a cloister, is remarkable . In the Baroque period, the tower was built, the interior of the church was redesigned and a two-story arcade was added to the south side of the church. The church roof was re-covered with stone platters in 1996. Z. (2020) to be covered again. Inside, the single nave nave is closed at the top by a groin vault with a belt arch. Under the choir of the church is the 14th century crypt.


The richly decorated, two-storey, baroque high altar fills the apse of the choir. His altarpiece shows St. Georg fighting the dragon. The picture is flanked by statues of Saint Benedict on the left and Scholastica on the right. On the outside are Saints Placidus and Maurus, pupils of Benedict. Above the altarpiece there is a figurative representation of Mary with the baby Jesus in a halo. On the upper floor of the aedicula altar are the figures of Saints Catherine and Florian on the left and Johannes Nepomuk and Barbara on the right. The top picture shows Saints Martin and Nikolaus. The entombment of Jesus is depicted on the antependium .

In the nave there are four baroque side altars: on the right-hand side in front the Marien Altar with a statue of Maria Immaculata in the shrine, flanked by the parents Joachim and Anna; further the Three Kings altar with the depiction of the Adoration of the Magi on the altarpiece. On the left are the Trinity Altar and the Annen Altar.

Gravestones and memorial stones

In the church, to the left of the south portal, the gravestone of Abbess Afra von Staudach (1562–1591) is noticeable. She came from the Göss monastery and restored the monastic community after a crisis. On the outside, to the left of the south portal, is the memorial stone for Abbess Maria Antonia von Platz (1711 / 12–1743). She caused the church to be redesigned in Baroque style and the monastery wing to be increased by one floor. Another tombstone commemorates the abbess Agnes von Lind, died in 1532. On the outer south wall there are also epitaphs of priests who worked here during the monastery.


  • Johannes Sacherer: 1000 years of St. Georgen Abbey on the Längsee - Festschrift; Women between the Benedictine ideal and monastic reality; Contributions to the symposium on the history of the former Benedictine monastery of St. Georgen am Längsee on the occasion of the 1000th anniversary from May 29th to 31st, 2003 . Self-published by Bildungshaus Stift St. Georgen am Längsee, 2003
  • DEHIO Carinthia. Topographical inventory of monuments , edited by Gabriele Russwurm-Biro. 3rd, enlarged and improved edition. Verlag Anton Schroll, Vienna 2001, ISBN 3-7031-0712-X , pp. 728-731.
  • KK Central Commission for Research and Conservation of Art and Historical Monuments: Art Topography of the Duchy of Carinthia . KK Hof- und Staatsdruckerei, Vienna 1889, p. 64.
  • Matthias Kapeller: Churches, monasteries and culture - meeting places in Carinthia . Carinthia Verlag, Klagenfurt 2001, ISBN 3-85378-539-5 , pp. 144-145
  • Edith Pergelier, Mauricio Pergelier : Historical organs of the diocese Gurk-Klagenfurt . Austro Mechana MP-E37, Klagenfurt, pp. 23-26.

Web links

Commons : Stift Sankt Georgen am Längsee  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Martin Bitschnau , Hannes Obermair : Tiroler Urkundenbuch, II. Department: The documents on the history of the Inn, Eisack and Pustertal valleys . tape 1 : Up to the year 1140. Universitätsverlag Wagner, Innsbruck 2009, ISBN 978-3-7030-0469-8 , p. 141–146, 161–164 (text of the founding report with detailed explanations).

Coordinates: 46 ° 46 ′ 52 ″  N , 14 ° 25 ′ 49 ″  E