Monday, 2 May 2016

Benedictine Convent of St John at Müstair

This is another Swiss site that I didn't visit yet. Is quite far from where I live because I have to go around the Alps to go there... But maybe one day...

Convent of St John
The Abbey of Saint John is an ancient Benedictine monastery in the Swiss village of Müstair, in the Canton of Graubünden. By reason of its exceptionally well-preserved heritage of Carolingian art, it has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1983.
It is believed that the abbey was established ca. 780 by a bishop of Chur, perhaps under orders from Charlemagne. It was built during a wave of monastery construction that included the nearby monasteries at CazisMistailPfäfers, and Disentis. The abbey was located along the Val Müstair pass over the Alps from Italy and was fortified to allow it to control the pass. In 881 the abbey passed over to be completely under the control of the Bishop of Chur. During the early years of the abbey, in the early 9th century, a series of frescos were painted in the church. Later, in the 11th and 12th centuries, the abbey experienced a second expansion and new paintings were added or painted over the old frescoes. These paintings were only rediscovered in the 20th century.
In the 10th century, the church tower was added to the abbey church. During the expansion of the 11th century the bishop of Chur enlarged his residence at the monastery. A fine tower homecloister, and the double chapel of St. Ulrich and St. Nicholas were added. During the expansion, the two-story residence chapel of the bishop was also decorated with extensive stucco and fresco work. - in: wikipedia

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