Eibingen
Community ID
 
1443
 
Town
 
near Bingen
 
Medieval Location
 
Near Bingen; on the other side of the Rhine River from the new convent of Rupertsberg
 
Modern Location
 
not far from Rüdesheim
 
Corporate Status
 
Abbey
 
Date Founded
 
1148; refounded in 1165
 
Date Terminated
 
1802
 
Religious Order
 
Benedictine
 
Rule
 
Benedictine
 
Foundation Information
 

In 1148 the noblewoman Marka of Rüdesheim had founded an Augustinian double house, which had been deserted by 1165 due to the chaos of war under the Emperor Frederick Barbarossa. This convent was refounded by S. Hildegard due to the increasing number of sisters in her new foundation of Rupertsberg. In 1165 she purchase the vacant monastery and restored the buildings. She then established thirty Benedictine nuns within it. The convent's rights in its supervision were finally established in a document from November 28, 1268.

 
First Members
 

The convent began with 30 Benedictine sisters from Rupertsberg. The heads of the house were initially described as "mistresses"; later they became abbesses.

 
Notable Heads
 

Benigna of Algesheim held office as abbess of the community for 44 years, from 1373-1417.

 
Notable Members/Residents/Guests
 

The convent is famous for its connection to S. Hildegard.

 
Population Counts
 

The convent began with 30 Benedictine sisters from Rupertsberg. By 1575, however, only three sisters were still living within the convent.

 
Priveleges & Papal Exemptions
 

In 1219 Pope Honorius III took the convent under his protection.

 
Other Ecclesiastical Relations
 

The convent has ties to Disibodenberg and Rupertsberg through S. Hildegard.

 
Social Characteristics
 

The sisters of the Eibingen convent came partially from the middle class.

 
Relative Wealth
 

The convent went into decline during the sixteenth century.

 
Art & Artifacts
 

An antependium created by the nuns of Eibingen, also known as the Rupertsberg antependium, dating from the 12th century remains extant. (See also the community of Rupertsberg)

 
State Of Medieval Structure
 

There are no remains of the medieval cloister. The monastery was destroyed by fire during the Thirty Years War in 1632. However, the church and convent were restored during the course of the seventeenth and eigteenth centuries. The parish church in Eibingen contains a shrine with the remains of S. Hildegard.

 
Miscellaneous Information
 

circa 1505 a reform of the convent took place under the Archbishop of Mainz, Jakob of Liebenstein. Archbishop Daniel Brendel of Homburg moved the last 3 sisters of the convent to the Cistercian convent of the abbey of Marienhausen. Meanwhile, the convent continued to provide shelter for the Augustinian sisters of S. Peter near Kreuznach, who were fleeing the Reformation. After long negotiations, the Baroness Cunigundis of Dehrn, abbess of Rupertsberg, achieved the restitution of the convent and its estate. From 1603 on, the title, "Abbess of Rupertsberg and Eibingen" became customary.

 
Contributors
 
June Mecham
 
Contributors Notes
 

The convent at Eibingen was refounded in 1904 and continues today. In the abbey church there are frescoes depicting the life of S. Hildegard. The university of Mainz maintains a website which allows one to follow the path of art and artifacts relating to the life of S. Hildegard in Bingen. The site is in German at http://www.uni-mainz.de/~horst/hildegard/spuren/spuren.html
An English-language page concerning the history of the convent of Eibingen is now available at
http://www.uni-mainz.de/~horst/hildegard/wirk/eeibing.html

 
Date Started
 
1148
 
Date Finished
 
1802
 
Length
 
2896