Hedwig of Silesia

The Holy Hedwig of Andechs ( Hedwig of Silesia, Polish: Jadwiga Śląska; * 1174 in Andechs, † October 15, 1243 in Trebnitzgrund ) was Duchess of Silesia and is revered in the Catholic Church as a saint. In the Roman general calendar is their Memorial Day on 16 October, in the name of Protestant Calendar on 15 October.

Origin and family

Hedwig of Andechs parents were Count Berthold IV, Count of Tyrol, Carinthia and Istria, and his wife Agnes, née von Rochlitz from the House of Wettin. Hedwig's brother Eckhart was bishop of Bamberg, another brother Berthold was Patriarch of Aquileia, her sister Gertrude was married to King Andrew of Hungary. Their daughter was St. Elizabeth of Hungary.


Hedwig was educated in the monastery of the Benedictine nuns of Kitzingen and married to twelve years with the Duke of Silesia, Henry I, Duke of Poland was also the 1233. Your marriage produced seven children. The eldest son was Henry II After 22 years of marriage, they lived according to tradition, abstemious with her husband.

Hedwig and Henry I promoted the deepening of Christian faith and the cultural development of Silesia. In 1202 they founded the Cistercian Abbey in Trebnitzgrund. As an example of Christian charity Hedwig supported the church, helped the poor and should have gone barefoot even in winter. According to tradition, she told her confessor to wear shoes, whereupon she took the shoes in his hand. Therefore, the hl. Hedwig often depicted with shoes in hands and a church in his hands.

After her husband died in 1238, Hedwig entered the monastery founded by her Trebnitzgrund and had to experience that in 1241 her son Henry II was killed in the Battle of choice instead. Therefore Hedwig founded with Henry 's widow Anne of Bohemia, daughter of the Bohemian King Ottokar I. Přemysl, in Wahlstatt a Benedictine abbey for which they called monks from the monastery Opatowitz in Hradec Kralove.


The hl. Hedwig died in October 1243 and was buried in the monastery church Trebnitzer. 1267 she was canonized. Relics are, inter alia, in the monastery of Andechs, in the St. Hedwig's Cathedral in Berlin and in the St. Gangolfus collegiate church ( " Selfkantbahn Cathedral " ) in Heinberg.

The Holy Hedwig is the patron saint of Silesia and Andechs, of the diocese and the city of Görlitz and her consecrated St. Hedwig's Cathedral in Berlin that made Frederick the Great built as Hedwig Church for the immigrant Catholics from Silesia.

After the Second World War, the exiled Catholic Silesians took the Hedwig - worship with new in their parishes; Hedwig became a symbolic figure for the lost homeland (eg, St. Hedwig's Church in Görlitz). Today the St. applies. Hedwig as patroness of reconciliation between Germans and Poles.

Statue in St. Maria ( Sehnde )

Hedwig statue in the cella of Bad Zell

Stamp ( 1955): 25 years Diocese of Berlin

Silver Medal of the Archdiocese of Hedwig Berlin

Bronze medal Hedwig of the Archdiocese of Berlin

Statue in Wroclaw