Contact form

Visitors counter:


Honourable patronage:

Bogdan Zdrojewski
Minister Kultury
i Dziedzictwa Narodowego

Międzynarodowa Rada
Ochrony Zabytków

Fot. Piotr Namiota
VOIVODESHIP: dolnośląskie
DISTRICT: trzebnicki
COMMUNE: Trzebnica
DIOCESE: wrocławska
DECANATE: Trzebnica
FOUNDATION: 1202-1203r; 1218 r.-inkorporacja do Zakonu

History of the abbey

      The first Cistercian convent in Trzebnica, Silesia was founded on 28th June 1202 by the Prince of Silesia Henryk Brodaty.
      Princess Jadwiga had some role in the foundation process, too. Her contribution was not in the form of money, but rather initiative of this enterprise and the choice of nuns or obtaining by persuasion some help from her relatives.
      The foundation and the first endowment were confirmed in the papal bull of Innocent II on 22nd November 1202.
      According to the founders' intentions the cloister was supposed to create the conditions for the God-fearing life for single women from the nobility and middle class. Apart from this pious intension other important aim was to create a centre of educational and science for young girls.
      The first convent of nuns came in 1203 from the Benedictine cloister of St. Theodore and Blessed Virgin Mary from Bamberg where Princess Jadwiga's sister was a professed nun. Trzebnica as a settlement had at that time the market right. In the same year they started to build a cloister and a church. The first part of the building was finished in 1214
      A ceremonious consecration of the church of Blessed Virgin Mary and St. Bartholomew the Apostle took place on 25th August 1219. Officially, the abbey became a part of the Cistercian Order in 1218 when the General capitulary decided to incorporate Trzebnica to the Cistercian Order.
      For the first two years the abbot of Pforte in Saxony was taking care of Trzebnica's convent, then due to the difficulties with communication this role was handed over to the abbot of Lubiąż.
      The cloister of Trzebnica received rich and profitable endowment from its founder. The area was quite big and well-organized with a possible future development.
      In this first period the cloister's farmstead differed from standards of the Order as in the prince's properties arable lands were cultivated by prince's subjects.
      With the endowment's development converses played more and more important and were responsible for the material aspect of the cloister; especially those which required the knowledge of various crafts.
      The first endowment grew thanks to the donations and grants, exchanges and other transactions. At the beginning of the 15th century they had a few dozens of villages with the people and big mansions in Silesia and Great Poland.
      Economic possibilities of the cloister allowed it to develop quickly and that is why it could settle a few abbeys in Poland and Moravia, namely: Ołobok near Kalisz in 1213, Oslovan near Brno in 1225, Owińska near Poznań in 1249 and Chełmno in 1267.
      It is worth noting that Polish traditions started in Trzebnica's convent lasted for two more centuries until the rules of abbesses from the Polish families and Silesian princesses of Piast family finished, that is, 1515.
      In 1212 Gertrude, the daughter of the founders joined the convent and in 1228 became an abbess and her rules lasted until 1268. Her mother, Jadwiga joined the convent after the death of her husband in 1241. Abbess Gertrude contributed to the canonization process of her mother, Jadwiga which took place in 1267 and was an important event for Trzebnica and Silesia, and even Poland. The fact the Princess Jadwiga became saint initiated donators to give more money and grants. Her tomb became a place of numerous pilgrimages during church holidays which resulted in the increase of money donations. It was the period of convent's development. These pilgrimages joined the cloister with other convents in Poland thus the abbey of Trzebnica became an important part of Silesia.
      Before the suppression in 1810 the abbey in Trzebnica had 25 granges, 83 villages, patronages over ten catholic churches and eleven Protestant churches, 25 Catholic and 28 Protestant schools. The cloister played an important role not only in the cultural aspect but also in an economic aspect.
      Since St. Jadwiga and her daughter St. Gertrude's times charity was a tradition, especially it included care about the ill in Trzebnica's hospital.
      Since 1526, the principality of Olesno together with Silesia went under Habsburg's rule and in 1742 became the part of Prussia. In 1820 the Cistercian nuns left Trzebnica as a result of the suppression decree of all the cloisters which were situated in Prussia

↑ Top

The Abbey today

Today of the abbey
          One of twelve biggest thirteenth-century monuments of sacral architecture in Central Europe. It was erected in 1696-1726 on the place of the original smaller building (from the beginning of the 13th century). Now, within its walls there are: the Sanctuary of St. Jadwiga of Silesia, A house of the General Congregation of the Sisters of Mercy of St. Karol Boromeusz, and Public Assistance Home run by the nuns.
      St. Jadwiga's Viridary- At the end of her life the founder of the cloister lived there in a separate house. Now there is a statue of St. Jadwiga that commemorates this fact. It is also possible to see there remains of the original cloister from the 13th century,

Dom Generalny Kongregacji Sióstr Miłosierdzia św. Karola Boromeusza
ul. Ks. Dziekana W. Bochenka 30
55-100 Trzebnica
Tel: 0048 71 387 41 00
Fax: 048 71 312 09 98
          Cloistral church of St. Bartholomew became a Basilica of St. Jadwiga. It is one of twelve biggest thirteenth-century monuments of sacral architecture in Central Europe. From the original late-baroque building (the beginning of the 13th century) only the frames of the walls and St. Bartholomew Crypt, which is under the presbytery, have survived. Lapidarium with numerous fragments of sculptures and architectural details is joined to it.
      The interior is decorated with: High altar from the 18th century (sculptures made by F.J. Mangoldt, paintings by F.K. van Bentum), Side altar with a painting 'Pan Jezus błogosławi św. Jadwidze' from the half of the 18th century; tombstones in presbytery of Prince Henryk Brodaty (died in 1238) and master of the Teutonic Knights, Konrad von Feuchtwangen (died in 1269) and Davidic portal from the 20ies of the 13th century in the north-west wall of the church which was bricked up in the 18th century and then in 1935 discovered again.
      Two chapels are worth noting: St. Jadwiga's Chapel- there is sarcophagus of St. Jadwiga from 1680, one of the outstanding works of Józef F. Mangoldt (about 1750). Round the sarcophagus's base there are statues of saints. Baroque altars which are in the chapel, pulpit ( called 'polish') and a plaque commemorating the choice of Karol Wojtyła for Pope. There is also a monumental crucifix with a sculpture of Christ (1st half of the 15th century); St. John the Baptist's Chapel in which there is the sarcophagus of St. Jadwiga from the 17th century.

Parafia św. Bartłomieja Ap. i św. Jadwigi Śląskiej
ul. Jana Pawła II 3;
55-100 Trzebnica;
tel: 0048 71 312 11 18
fax: 0048 71 387 07 13

↑ Top


↑ Top

Display count: 122920