Ochsenhausen Abbey

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Imperial Abbey of Ochsenhausen
Reichsabtei Ochsenhausen
Imperial Abbey of the Holy Roman Empire

Coat of arms

Capital Ochsenhausen Abbey
Government Principality
Historical era Middle Ages
 •  Dedicated 1093
 •  Gained independence 1391 1495
 •  Gained Reichsfreiheit 1495
 •  Serf rebellion 1501
 •  Secularised to
    von Metternich
 •  Mediatised to

Preceded by
Succeeded by
Sankt Blasien Abbey in the Black Forest

Ochsenhausen Abbey (formerly Ochsenhausen Priory; German: Reichskloster or Reichsabtei Ochsenhausen) was a Benedictine monastery in Ochsenhausen in the district of Biberach in Baden-Württemberg, Germany.


The traditional story of the foundation, in which there may be some elements of truth, is that in the 9th century there was a nunnery here called "Hohenhusen", which was abandoned at the time of the Hungarian invasions in the early 10th century. A ploughing ox later turned up a chest of valuables buried by the nuns before their flight, and the monastery of Ochsenhausen was founded on that spot.

The first Abbey Church of Ochsenhausen was in fact dedicated in 1093. The monastery was initially a priory of St. Blaise's Abbey in the Black Forest, but gained the status of an independent abbey in 1391. In 1495 it became Reichsfrei (territorially independent).

The abbey was secularised in 1803 and in 1806 its territories were absorbed into the Kingdom of Württemberg.

Much of the buildings still survive. They were extensively refurbished in the Baroque style, so much so that Ochsenhausen is sometimes referred to as "Himmelreich des Barocks" ("Baroque heaven"). The Baden-Württemberg State Youth Music Academy (de)[1] is accommodated in part of them. The former abbey church is now the parish church of St. George's.


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Coordinates: 48°03′51″N 9°57′05″E / 48.06417°N 9.95139°E / 48.06417; 9.95139