Ilsenburg Abbey

The Ilsenburg Abbey is a former Benedictine monastery in the town of Ilse castle in the district of Harz, in Saxony- Anhalt. The monastery dates from the 11th and 12th centuries. Owner of the monastery church is the city Ilse castle, which was restored by the sacred building complex since 1974. The remains of the monastery is a museum since 2000 owned by the monastery Ilsenburg Foundation. It is to be built an arts and cultural center which is also the castle, located on the former grounds of the convent is included.

The monastery and the castle church St. Peter and Paul are a station on the Romanesque Road in Saxony- Anhalt.


Emperor Henry II notarized on April 15, 1003, the donation of the " Elisenaburg " to the Halberstadt bishop Arnulf ( 999-1023 ). The expansion of the imperial hunting Palatinate retired to a monastery probably back to 1018. Only here there is again a message via the " Benedictine Abbey of St. Peter". Arnulf had it equipped with numerous lands and plead monks from Fulda to Ilse castle. The heyday of the 500-year existing monastery was between the late 11th and 13th centuries. Numerous acquired through purchase and donations possessions it could ascend to one of the richest Benedictine monasteries between the Weser and Elbe. After Bishop Burchard II had the monk Herrand (* 1055, † 1102) used as abbot, Ilsenburg won since about 1070 also in the spiritual realm becoming increasingly important. From here, various monasteries in the aftermath newly established or reformed, as Huysburg, Harsefeld at Stade, Hiller lives in Magdeburg and Wimmelburg at Eisleben.

The reformation of monastic life in Ilsenburg found its architectural expression in the construction of a larger church, which was consecrated on June 5, 1087 by Burchard II to Saints Peter and Paul. Your three-aisled choir, which in turn ended in three apses, is first detectable in the church architecture of the Benedictine Order in the former German Empire. The ornate plaster floor screed comes from the period around 1200 and is now one of the treasures of Romanesque art in the German area. The exam surviving buildings partly erected 1120-1176, after fire destroyed the previous buildings. Convention to temporarily included 25 monks. Since 1464/65, the abbey was a member of Bursfeld Congregation of the Benedictine order. During the Peasants' War large parts of the church, the cloister and the Lady Chapel were destroyed.

The last abbot died in 1572. The Count now employed as an administrator Christoph Stolberg led a year later, extensive construction on the now dilapidated monastery church, which was used in sequence as the Castle Church. This was followed in the 17th and 18th centuries, the demolition of the west wing of the exam and the cloister. The remaining parts of the building were told in the following centuries a very different use. Larger maintenance work on the buildings are only occupied again after 1860 in connection with the construction of the palace wing on the west side of the former monastery grounds. 1929 leased Prince Christian Ernst of Stolberg- Wernigerode next to the Castle, the old monastery building for 30 years at the Old Prussian Union of Evangelical Churches Berlin, the various training centers established in the premises.

After expiry of the contract the now dispossessed remnants of the exam remained unused. Only with the sale of the monastery church to the community Ilse castle in 1974 and the opening of a rest home for employees of the Ministry of Agriculture and food industry in the wing of the castle, the buildings were accessible again at least for visitors and causes first securing work and minor repairs. In 2000, the Foundation Ilsenburg Abbey took chaired by Princess Maria of Stolberg- Wernigerode the east and the south wing of the cloister of the former Benedictine abbey. You are now one of the focal objects of the German Foundation for Monument Protection.

High altar



In the belfry there is a medieval bells of three bells. All the bells hang in a wooden belfry on wooden yokes. The bride bell hangs on cranked steel yoke and should be hung on a straight Holzjoch as part of a renovation. It bears the inscription " Qui sequeris lete me dum sono spes bona de te" ( translation: "If you're happy folgest my clang, Good is hope for you" ).