World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Sanctuary of St. Jadwiga in Trzebnica

Article Id: WHEBN0018879473
Reproduction Date:

Title: Sanctuary of St. Jadwiga in Trzebnica  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Hedwig of Silesia, Piast dynasty, Lubin, List of basilicas, Trzebnica, Polish Gothic architecture, Ścinawa, Henry I the Bearded, Counts of Andechs
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Sanctuary of St. Jadwiga in Trzebnica

Sanctuary of St. Jadwiga in Trzebnica is a convent for Cistercian nuns, situated in Trzebnica (German: Trebnitz) north of Wrocław, in Silesia, Poland, founded in 1203. After few decades of abandonment in the 19th century, it is an abbey of the Sisters of Mercy of St. Borromeo since 1889.


The abbey was established by the Silesian Piast duke Henry I the Bearded and his wife Saint Hedwig of Andechs (Polish: Święta Jadwiga Śląska), confirmed by Pope Innocent III. The legend of its foundation relates that once Duke Henry when out hunting fell into a swamp from which he could not extricate himself. In return for the rescue from this perilous position, he vowed to build the abbey. With Hedwig's consent, her brother Ekbert of Andechs, then Bishop of Bamberg, chose the first nuns that occupied the convent. The first abbess was Petrussa from Kitzingen Abbey; she was followed by Gertrude, the daughter of Hedwig. The abbey was richly endowed with lands by Duke Henry. When Hedwig became a widow in 1238, she went to live at Trzebnica and was buried there.

Up to 1515, the abbesses were first princesses of the Piast dynasty and afterwards members of the nobility. It is said that towards the end of the thirteenth century the nuns numbered 120. The abbey also became a mausoleum of many rulers of the fragmented Silesian Piasts. In 1672 there were 32 nuns and 6 lay sisters, in 1805 there were 23 nuns and 6 lay sisters. The abbey suffered from all kinds of misfortunes both in the Middle Ages and later: from famine in 1315, 1338, 1434, and 1617, from disastrous fires in 1413, 1432, 1464, 1486, 1505, 1595, and 1782. At the Protestant Reformation, most of the nuns were Poles, as were the majority until during the eighteenth century. The abbey of Trebnitz suffered so greatly during the Thirty Years War that the nuns fled across the border on the territory of the mostly unaffected Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, as they did again in 1663 when the Turks threatened Silesia.

In 1742, in the aftermath of the First Silesian War and the Treaty of Breslau, Trebnitz found itself under the governance of Protestant Prussia and started to suffer from political discrimination. The last abbess, Dominica von Giller, died on 17 August 1810, and on 11 November 1810, the abbey was suppressed and secularized by order of King Frederick William III. The building, which was very extensive, was sold later and turned into a cloth factory. In late 19th century, the ruined abbey was bought by Knights Hospitaller and later by female order of Sisters of St. Charles Borromeo as a hospital conducted by the sisters.

Abbey church

The church, a basilica with pillars in the late Romanesque style, to which Baroque additions were made from 1741. It features several paintings with scenes from the life of St. Hedwig by Michael Willmann. After the secularisation of the abbey, it became the Trebnitz parish church.

The grave of St. Hedwig is located in a chapel to the right of the high altar, donated by her grandson Archbishop Ladislaus of Salzburg in 1267. The grave of Duke Henry I, her husband, is in front of the altar.



  • public domain:  The entry cites:
    • SCHMIDT, Gesch. des Klosterstiftes Trebnitz (Oppein, 1853);
    • Bach., Gesch. und Beschreibung des Klosterstiftes in Trebnitz (Neisse, 1859);
    • JUNGNITZ, Wahrfahrtsbuchlein fur Verehrer der hl. Hedwig (3d ed., Breslau, 1902).

External links

  • Catholic Encyclopedia: Trebnitz Abbey

Coordinates: 51°18′32″N 17°03′59″E / 51.30889°N 17.06639°E / 51.30889; 17.06639

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.