Churches in Nuremberg
Nuremberg – Church of Our Lady (Frauenkirche)
The Frauenkirche was built from 1352 to 1358 at the instigation of Emperor Carl IV. Name itself means The Church Of Our Lady ). The oldest hall church in Franconia, it was constructed under the supervision of the master cathedral builder and architect of Prague, Peter Parler. The church was originally Protestant but was taken over by the Catholics when Nuremberg fell to Bavaria in 1806.
This unusually nice Church has pretty long, and not always so pretty history behind it. After it was built, it was meant to be a Jewish Synagogue, and it served its purpose up until the Second World War. But let’s start at the beginning.
This remarkable brick structure is settled at the eastern part of the paved main marketplace and it is a great example of the Gothic architecture. Adam Kraft, the man that designed this church is one of the very well known German stone sculptors and a master builder during the Gothic period remodeling and stone-crafting for this Church.
The church is filled with mostly restored pieces of artwork, but some of them are so hardly damaged, that many of the best pieces are hardly recognizable. As earlier mentioned, this was a Jewish synagogue, and that is the first time this Church suffered the most of demolition. After, there was a Black Plague which should be enough to lose all the followers during the pogrom in 1849.
When it was built, Charles IV wanted it to be the greatest building where new Kings and Queens should be coronated, in the light of this magnificent work of art. Many of the pictures and frescoes that are not ruined, were restored, and many of them are still on display at the Church.
Son of Charles IV was baptized right there at this Church in 1361., and since then all the insignia that was used in baptism and in all the ceremonies after are still kept, most of them in Nuremberg, where once a year people from all parts of the world come here to see the treasures once warned by the royals.
The Frauenkirche contains a long hallway and two rows of seats. At the end of the hallway is a platform where once stood a throne for the King and his Queen. In the middle are nine bays that are supported by four columns.
Even the window frames are made of stone into a tracery, that looks stunning. All the entrances to the building are made also of stone, in a semy-arch way, so even entering from any angle, you’ll feel small and look into an amazing work of art. All over this stone top are the small covered terraces, and every one of them has a sculpture built in it.
At the front end is a beautiful mechanical clock, or as they call it ” The Männleinlaufen ” one of the trademarks of this place. It dates from XVI century when it was finally finished, and it’s better known as a Golden Bull of 1356. It’s known by the decreet that Charles the IV fixed for 400 years, about the structure of the Holy Roman Empire.
Just below the clock is the Holy Roman Emperor, sitting in his chair, with elected princes surrounding him.
The most impressionable time to see this great structure is a few days before Christmas when all the market-place lits up with Chrismas ornaments, and lights give the impression of a truly magical place.
The greatest thing about this clock it’s that every single day at noon, it’s mechanism sets in motion series of bells, which last about 5 – 10 minutes, while the Church Elders built-in are rotating in a circular motion until the Clock stops at The Great Emporer again. A great place to look at the world with a different set of eyes.
Nowadays, it’s better known as a Catholic Parish Church of Vergin Mary. It is also known as one of the most important Churches in Nuremberg.
it has a history so long, that not all the facts can be mentioned, but still there are more.
After banishing all the Jews, some years later, the whole church burn down in 1349., by the order of King Charles The IV. After, followed the Black Plague, and big gathering was not that much important, so for a while, it was abandoned.
Since 1948. the balcony of the Church is used only for Christkindlesmarkt or translated – The Christmas Market – which is held every year, annually, and it’s during the Advent it the Hauptmarkt. The whole area, with joining streets are great at that time of year, and a special treat for the eyes.
Right across the main entrance is the beautiful fountain that only enriches the beauty of this place.
Also, one of the greatest things about this Church are the organs, which date about XV century, but its first mention is about 1442. The current organ that fills up the walls inside with its unique sound and was made in 1988., by the firm Orgelbau Klais, which is one of the most famous firms that builds, designs and restores organs in Germany.
To sum up the facts in one place, these days, The Church Of Our Lady is now Catholic by denomination, it’s a Parish Church, built in Gothic style. Groundbreaking stones were settled in 1352., but it wasn’t finished all to 1361. One of the benefits of this place is that it can hold about 25.000 people at the same time. Currently, the presiding pastor is Markus Bolowich, and the organ player, as well as music director, is Frank Dillmann.
This is, for sure, one of the greatest monuments in this town.
St. Sebald Church (St. Sebald, Sebalduskirche)
Opening hours: Apr. – Sept. 9 a.m. – 8 p.m., Mar. & Oct. 9 a.m. – 6 p.m., Nov. – Feb. 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Apart from being one of the most important Churches in Nuremberg, not everywhere is mentioned that it’s one of the oldest in town.
The late Roman Church of St. Sebald was built in the 13th century to honor St Sebald, the patron saint of Nuremberg. The church was built at the same place where once was an old Catholic church.
The saint is buried here. The church became Lutheran in 1524. and is one of the most important Protestant places of worship. Dating from medieval times, and it is located on the Albrecht-Dürer-Platz, right across the old town City Hall.
It’s named is St. Sebaldus, who is the City’s saint protector, or simply Nurenberg Saint Protector. He was VIII century hermit, who spend all of his adult life secluded from the outside world.
After the Reformation of the Church, this Chuch become Lutheran Parish Church.
The construction of the Church began in the XIII century, in 1255. and it was finished not that long after in 1273-75 when it was finally completed. It was meant to be a Romanesque basilica, but it went on a renovation during the late XIV century, where two aisles became one, Steeples was built to be much higher than before and that took also from 1309. until 1345., and in the end the Gothic style walked in when it became a Gothic style Church.
Other 2 towers were built later, in the middle of the XV century. Not much was being done on the Church itself up until XVII century. Then, they decided to decorate inside of the Church with galleries filled with pictures, and to redesigned inside to resemble Baroque style.
During The Second World War, this Church suffered serious damage, both in and outside. After the war was ended, they successfully restored all damage church suffered during the war. Now it resembles the old Church from back in the days, as closely as possible.
Being settled in the middle of the town, this is a place where town people, as well as visitors, can always come here, either you need just to rest or reflect your emotions to the church, just pray, or even admire exterior and interior works of art, many of which date as far as XIII century, some of them are restored, but still a place to admire, and feel how magnificent this place really is.
This Church is on the way to the Castle, so if you are visiting north of the Church, it would be a great time to see it. The inside of the Church is so richly decorated, but one of them stands up. After the war, not only the Churches were rebuilt, but also the City of Nuremberg. One of the things left even after the war was Annunciation Angel which is on the southern-east court, where it stands still today.
During the late XIX and at the beginning of the XX century. Since the reformation of the Church, this church is considered one of the two main Protestant Churches in Nurenberg, which are now a part of Evangelic Lutheran Church in Bavaria.
This Church was started to be built back way at the 11th century, to be more exact, at 1050. The first written part of this place is recorded at 1050., and its meant to be the church of worship, to St. Sebaldus, patron of the City of Nurenberg as well as the patron of the church. He lived in the 11th century, and when he died his remains were buried in the church.
Reformation of the Church got to Nurenberg around 1525. when many monasteries had to dissolve or were forbidden to have new blood.
The Church we see today was renovated and got back into the beginning of the XVII century. Still, if you look at this Church from outside, you would think that is a city hall or some other building, decorated outside, so it won’t bring much attention to it. But still, Church where you can feel free to say your prayers or simply enjoy the time that once was.
This is definitely one of those places that don’t really look like something big, and the exterior may full you. When you enter inside, you will be pleasantly surprised by the dancing colors of the frescoes on the walls built in marble that you will cherish forever. For such a small place, looking from outside, inside is a spacious, large Church, so pretty and calm.
This Evangelic Church is pretty distinct when you look at other two Churches that surrounds it. It looks almost nothing like your ordinary church. One would say pretty dull for a much-expected exterior. But, once you get inside, you’ll see why this astonishing building stands out from most of the rest.
Building work started on the Elisabethkirche in the second half of the 18th century and was not completed until 1903. This Catholic church with its large, distinctive dome is the only large Classical building in Nuremberg. Characterized like a smaller Church, instead of being a Chapel, this little beauty is the real intimate place to go alone or with your family, but should visit if you are going to see the Churches of Nurenberg.
The main altar is right beneath the dome, shading light into the Church. This move is done so everyone can see everything that’s going around the Church, not just the front of the altar.
Saint Jakob’s Church
Saint Jakob’s Church is Evangelical Lutheran Church located on the southwestern part of the town, better known as Lorenzer old town.
The Jakobskirche was once the official church of the Teutonic Order. It was handed over on February 20th, 1209. by Emperor Otto the IV but some 80 years later it was ruined to the ground, and every stone that was in the building was reused for building a new, better Church. The Teutonic Order made and founded St. Elisabeth Hospital right across the street from the Church.
When King Frederick came to rule, he noticed that Teutonic Order has much, much more than anyone could expect, so he ordered in 1304. for a Royal Courthouse to be added as well as surrounding terrain was rebuilt to look even better than before. Then, the reformation of the Church was at its peak, this lovely Church became one of the Protestant city churches. Then war ruined everything, along with the Churches.
Renovation started in the 14th and 15th centuries. Although it was destroyed in 1945, the building has now undergone an expensive restoration and today it once again houses numerous art treasures. In 1531., they built a preacher’s office, although it remains in possession of the Catholic Teutonic Order. In 1632. King Gustav Adolf expropriated the Teutonic Order and renovated Church from top to bottom. In 1648. Church returned to Teutonic Order by the Two Treatises. When it comes to Secularity of Deutschordenshaus 1806. Church building became a treasure of the Kingdom Of Bavaria.
In the tower up above are four Church Bells. Every one of them has its donator, value, and sound. Besides, everyone has its name and a purpose. Let’s just name them, because this set of bells can make the greatest sounds. So first the bell is a prayer bell by Christian Victor Herold, the second is James bell founded by Bell Foundry Bachert in 1690, the third was added the same year, by the same company that makes bells named Melanchtonglocke, and the last, fourth one is added baptism bell in 1502. by the Hans Glockengieser II, which completes this Church set of Bells.
During the years it has every so often a different purpose like being a city hall, then, when it becomes state property, it was used as a military storage place, then, much later it served as an emergency Church. In addition, the Church leaders saved everything that was still worth saving. Now it is a modern day Church, filled with light and old but renewed statues and frescoes.
In 1902. it was finally finished, after which it becomes the Second Catholic parish church in Nuremberg.
This modern line up is one of the better done, when the remodeling, rebuilding, and restoration was done. Now it’s a great place of worship, getting to a quiet place, but also a place of great gathering of its believers. This Church has everything you need, being a believer or not. Certainly, a place that should be visited when on holiday in Nurenberg.
St. Lorenz Nuremberg – Lorenzkirche
Opening hours: Mon. – Sat. 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., Sun. 1 – 4 p.m.
The construction of St Lorenz began in 1260 on the foundation walls of a Roman basilica and was completed in 1360. This medieval church of the former imperial city of Nurenberg. It was Dedicated to Saint Lawrence, who was one of the seven Deacons of the City of Rome who was made a martyred because he defended Christians of being prosecuted.
The building of the Church was committed in 1400. and the work began slowly, working around Churches hall in 1439. Style in which is made id late Germanic Sondergotik, a style similar to the Gothic Style. Veit Stoss was one of the leading Geman sculptors, and Angelic Salutations, that are all around the Church are the straightest way of seeing the authors skills and love to his work.
Besides this church, Church of Our Lady and the Church of the St. Sebaldus are the three most important churches in this town.
The facade made in stone and stone ornaments makes this Church a work of art. The furnishing inside was paid by the local citizen who was willing and had enough to give to the Church for restoration. In the Second World War, this Church suffered the most of the damage, so almost the whole place had to be restored from the ground up.
Maybe the only good thing that happens during the Reformation of the Church was that citizens of Nurenburg wanted the treasure of their ancestors being saved, so this is the only place which holds some of the artwork that pre-dates the Chuch Reformation. The west part of the church has a rich facade, which meant to represent the wealthy people of Nurenberg. The church has two towers, which from there has an amazing view. Even the native people often go to this Church, not to mention tourists who gather just to see the beauty of this special place.
One of the most amazing thing about this place is its organ. Made from three parts, this organ is one of the largest pipe organs in the whole world. Since they were not installed all at once, the first was rebuilt from the old organ by the Ogelblau Klais, than there is a Stephans Organ restored in 2002. and Laurentius Organ in 2005. which were made in Bonn, and installed with a lot of work. Now, this pipe organ has 12.000 pipes and 165 registers.
Switch to bells, not only that this church has 16 bells, one of the earliest of them was cast way back in the XIV century. It is very similar to its sister church St. Sebald, on which it was modeled.
This is the only large baroque building in Nuremberg. It was built on the remains of a former Scottish monastery from 1711 onwards. St Egidius was the largest building project in Nuremberg in the 18th century.
But let start from the beginning. The Church of St. Giles is one of the last remaining Schottenkloster (Irish Benedictine monastery), only Baroque place of worship, built especially to be the Church. It was first built in the 12th century and was one of the first Churches in the new town of Nurenberg. The place where they build the church was from all the people who came here to live and have a place of worship. The Church that we see today is a restored edition since at the beginning of the 18th century they remodeled it which lasted from 1701. until 1718., and today is still the same Church erected in the 18th century.
The Church is located at Egidienplatz, and it is first served as a monastery. Later, it becomes the only Baroque Church in Nurenberg. This Church is considered to be of great significance to the Baroque architecture building in the 012th century Germany, and it’s the one that still stands. Because it was built on royal land, Church always had a Royal status amongst the other Churches, not only in Nurenberg but in the other German cities, this one is one of the oldest, and still, have its beauty even though the time has passed.
Inside is a three-aisled rowed basilica built in Roman style, but about 1400., the monastery is left without founding, and some of the precious art was seel at first. Soon after they had almost nothing when German Benedictines from Reichenbach After took over the monastery and help rebuild it, almost everything is renovated and church finally had its old glory, until 6–7 July 1696. when the whole church with all its buildings burns in the fire.
In 1525., after Reformation of the church, it became the state governed facility. After two failed attempts to rebuild this magnificent work of art, on 14 October 1711., the first foundation was laid. Restauration of this Church is one of the biggest projects in Nurenberg in the 18th century and it was finished in the same century. Concrete sculptures and little stucco decorations were made by Donato Polli. Three of the main frescoes are also done by artists Daniel Preisler and Johann Martin Schuster, to be the main attraction.
Unfortunately, on the 2nd of February 1945., Church was so badly damaged, in the bombing of the city, that little was left after the war. In that period, it didn’t really matter how fast, it was the point to rebuilt it.
That job was entrusted to Nuremberg architect Rudolf Gröschel, who didn’t have much to work with, because of the economic crisis, so to reconstruct interior was secondary. That’s why this place has been renewed outside, and then the inside was tried to work on.
Amongst other things, this place has a great musical history, an organ which was played by the most renowned organist in the country and out. Besides, Church has 6 bells in the tower.
If planning to visit this beautiful city, be sure to visit this Church with great its history and beautiful architecture.
Just below Nuremberg’s Kaiserburg is one of the oldest Churches in town. Even though it’s mentioned in the 13th century, no one really knows the real date of when this Church was built. The best guess is that the ground foundation was laid in the first 13th century, and it’s not long from that, it was finished. This was the only historical church in Nuremberg that was not destroyed in World War Two. The attached St. Johannis cemetery is one of the most cultural-historically important cemeteries in Europe. Albrecht Dürer, a country renowned painter was living and working in Nurenberg right is buried here.
It was endowed in 1440 by the patrician Gabriel Tetzel and was completed in 1470. St Peter’s was only slightly damaged in 1945 and still houses many impressive art treasures.
The 13th century Klarakirche belonged to the convent of the Sisters of St Mary Magdalene. After Nuremberg accepted the Reformation the convent was finally dissolved in 1596.
Three of the main frescoes are also done by artists Daniel Preisler and Johann Martin Schuster, to be the main attraction.
Also, behind the Church is a cemetery, one of the most famous in German, maybe even in Europe. Even though it’s a cemetery, in front of the Church are many bushes with roses, which is one of the reasons, why this place is called also Rosenfriedhof ( “Rose Cemetery” ).
It is very nicely decorated and calm on the eyes, but besides that, it has a big and long past, architecturally, and both culturally.
Many famous people were buried here, and headstones that you can see only in this place, if you are into that kind of stuff, this church is a must go.
Even though it doesn’t have a spooky and ugly side, it is worth visiting, even if it’s not that scary. One of the things interesting about this Church is that its artwork Albrecht Dürer was buried here, as a commemoration to his great work within the Church.
St. Peter Nuremberg
Former Chapel of St. Peter’s Cemetery, and after Secon World War it is under monument conservation because it stores many of the treasures that couldn’t be kept anywhere else during the war. It was endowed in 1440 by the patrician Gabriel Tetzel and was completed in 1470. St. Peter’s was only slightly damaged in 1945. and still houses many impressive art treasures.
The Church is made in Gothic style, and from the outside, unlike the rest of the Churches in Nurenburh, has an exterior of a really friendly, family Church.
Like most of the others, this church also had the hardest bombarding on January the 2nd, 1945., when this Church, like most of the others, got a devastating blow. Some were ruined so badly, that more than once, architects had to start all over from the top again.
Interior holds many treasures from before the Second World War, and this is the place where most of the artwork was hidden during the whole period while the war was raging, and long after until the restoration made it look like a Church again. Since the reformation of the church, it becomes mostly Protestant. This Church is the heart of the district, which is surrounded by buildings from medieval time and hold valuable works of art.
Even though it has its own cemetery, which was moved, this Church is mostly used for weddings. But, surely that is not all that this Church has to offer. For example, in 1985. there was an exhibit about 150 years from opening railroad traffic in Germany and hold a place for many others like that one.
Inside the Church, itself are the most beautiful works of art made from the variety of means. So, on the walls are frescoes, some preserved, some restored, the arches are made from stone, and columns too. On the windows are mosaic colored pictures, which give the great sensation when the sun enters through the windows.
A must see place when visiting.
Klarakirche ( St. Clare )
This narrow Church that dates from 13th century. It is a Roman-Catholic Church, and it’s settled in the old part of town. The building itself is placed on Altstadt district, St.Lorenc.
The construction began in 1270., and being in the old part of the town, is the Church where everyone is welcome. In the 13th century, Klarakirche belonged to the convent of the Sisters of St Mary Magdalene. During the first years, this was a place where the less fortunate ones could find comfort and consolation in this place. That’s why in the beginning it was called Church Of Poor Claire.
This place has a long history and one that can not be described in just a few words.
So, at the beginning from 1274 up to 1574. it was a monastery Church. After that, until 1806. all through the Reformation of the Church, it was Protestant sermon Church. After Nuremberg accepted the Reformation the convent was finally dissolved in 1596.
From that time, the imperial city of Nurenberg was dissolved, and become a part of the Kingdom of Bavaria, during which period, everything that was of any importance inside the Church and out, was ruined. During this time, this holy ground was used as a warehouse, or storage place, so many important things were ruined in this period.
In 1854. Church get its old glory and becomes a Catholic Church, and as that, it remains until today.
On the 16th March 1945., the building was so badly damaged that was unrecognizable, after which was burned to the ground. From 1948. to 1953. The church was rebuilt to its previous condition.
In 1965., part was added as an addition to rebuilding church by the ideas of Second Vatican Council. During the excavation of the old cemetery, they found the remains of Caritas Pirckheimer in 1595., after which time Jesuit Father Georg Deichstetter led the Marian Congregation, during which time he collected enough money to reconstruct parts of the Chuch and to build Caritas-Pirckheimer House, which served as a Jesuit education and conference center.
The organ was built in 1986., bu Georg Jann, it has 15 registers on two manual and one pedal.
There is much art to see here, for example, wooden crescent moon Madona, which dates from far 15th century. Then there is a magnificent crucifixion by Veit Wirsberger, and on the end of the tour is always a tomb in which is Caritas Pirckheimer buried.
Certainly, a lot to see, and have a great experience while visiting this great town.
This little beauty is settled in the most natural and beautiful surrounding you will ever see. Not many years ago it has been listed as a national treasure, and by that, it’s being protected.
This is Evangelic-Lutheran Church, but like most of the other places, you can be of any faith and still have a great time enjoying the culture this place has to offer. If you have time, be sure to visit this Church, you won’t be sorry. For the time it was built, this Church was one of the most important and most influential Churches in Nurnberg.
Its present name was assigned to this Church in 1954., and the church itself is built in neo-Gothic style.
In the bombings of 1945. left the Heilig-Kreuz-Kirche in ruins. It was originally endowed as a pilgrim’s hospital by the Nuremberg patrician Berthold Haller in 1352. It served as accommodation for pilgrims, beggars, and cripples. Nowadays we can see one modern Church, filled with ornaments from post-war time, and the works of art you may see there, is such a rarity, that the beauty of the unique pieces inside, can be held only as a great memory, of a great spent weekend, or holiday.
Visiting this Church, you may not really feel that you went to the church. Still, rules are the same…a place for rest, a place where you can try and redeem yourself, where all the sins are forgiven, only if you repent and look more deeply into your heart and your soul.
The last reconstruction began in 1902., and its planning lasted about 2 years. In May 1909. architect Hans Fourné ordered beginning of the rebuilding. In 1912. all the external work was finished.
For the interior, they got three artists Walter Crane, Friedrich Karl Zadow, and Georg Kölnsperger. After they finished, Church was ready to be inaugurated, and it was on May the 17th, 1914.
This is one of the buildings that, during the tame had different purposes, but in the end, it still remained a Church. Renovations were done in 1955/56., and again in 1986/87., and today is still visible some of the primary artwork that was done in this Church.
The organ for this church was ordered at the beginning of the XX century ( 1910. ), and most of the work on organs was done by 1913. The set of 146 pipes have a great sound, and this pipe-organ is characterized as magnificently successful work, and one of the oldest made organs by John Strebel organs.
On the top of the Church, there are three bells in two separate rows, and they are cast by the Bochum Club, and their first chime was heard on February the 19th, 1911. What is interesting about them it is that parts of the Bible was written on every bell, like a piece of history, to chime forever.
Be sure to visit this lovley place.