Tegernsee, Abbey of

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Benedictine monastery in Southeast Bavaria, founded (746) in honor of the Savior by Counts Adalbert and Otkar of Warngau and Tegernsee. In the 9th century after an early period of prosperity, it was deprived of many of its possessions by Count Arnulf the Bad. The Magyar invasion of 907 completely destroyed it. It was restored in 979 by Otto II who invited Hartwich, a monk of st. maximin of Trier, to become abbot. It soon became a flourishing center of monasticism, repopulating other abbeys that had been destroyed earlier in the century. Learning and the arts flourished, and to this period belongs the monk-poet Froumund (d. 1012). A glass works for fine stained glass was established at this time. During the 14th century the abbey suffered from wars in southern Germany and from the prodigality of several abbots; the practice of limiting admission to members of the nobility contributed to its decline. An apostolic visitation in 1426 decreed a thorough reform and forced the incumbent abbot to resign. Caspar Ayndorffer, at 25, the youngest member of the community, was then appointed abbot. During his long reign (142660) discipline was restored, and the customs of the Abbey of melk were adopted as the basis of reform. From Tegernsee the reform gradually spread to other Bavarian monasteries and led to the formation in 1684 of the Bavarian Benedictine Union which comprised 19 monasteries under the abbot of Tegernsee who had the title of Primas Bavariae. The abbey flourished until it was suppressed in 1803. Its rich library of 60,000 volumes, 6,600 incunabula, and 2,000 MSS was transported to the National Library at Munich.

Bibliography: m. fuchs, Geschichte des ehemaligen Klosters Tegernsee (Munich 1876). m. hartig, Die Benediktinerabtei Tegernsee, 7461803 (Munich 1946). Studien und Mitteilungen aus dem Benedictiner und dem Cistercienser Orden 60 (1946). v. redlich, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. m. buchberger, 10v. (Freiburg 193038) 9:102931.

[c. falk]