Andechs, Abbey of

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Former Benedictine abbey in the Diocese of augsburg, Bavaria, south Germany. It was founded by Duke Albrecht III of Bavaria (145556) during the reform of his friend nicholas of cusa and dedicated to St. Nicholas; monks from tegernsee settled it. Originally Andechs was a castle of the powerful Counts of Diessen-Wolfratshausen (of Andechs after 1130), who had extensive holdings in Bavaria, Main-Franconia, the Tyrol, Istria, and Burgundy, and who produced many saints and bishops before becoming extinct in 1248. The relics the counts had collected in the Holy Land and Italy were kept in a chapel, cared for by Benedictines, which in 1248 came under the bishop of Augsburg. Chapel and relics survived the destruction of the castle (1248), and the relics, after discovery, were exhibited (1388). Many illustrious monks lived in Andechs before it was suppressed (1803); as a rule, there were 25 to 30 monks (17501802). In 1846 Louis I of Bavaria gave Andechs to the newly founded St. Boniface Abbey in Munich, to which it still belongs. The 15th-century Gothic hall church has furnishings of 1755. Among the famous relics, a host consecrated by Pope Gregory I (d. 604) attracts many pilgrims.

Bibliography: l. h. cottineau, Répertoire topobibliographique des abbayes et prieurés, 2 v. (Mâcon 193539) 1:9495. a. bayol, Dictionnaire d'histoire et de géographie ecclésiastiques, ed. a. baudrillart et al. (Paris 1912) 2:155256. r. bauerreiss, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. j. hofer and k. rahner, 10 v. (2d, new ed. Freiburg 195765) 1:505506. o. l. kapsner, A Benedictine Bibliography: An Author-Subject Union List, 2 v. (2d ed. Collegeville, Minn. 1962) 2:185186.

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