Seligenthal
Community ID
 
1434
 
Alternate Names
 
Collegium sanctimonialium apud Landshut (1242); Vallis felix (1259); Säldental (1298)
 
Town
 
Landshut
 
Diocese
 
Regensburg
 
Modern Location
 
Landshut; in the governmental district of lower Bavaria (Niederbayern); in the administrative district of Landshut.
 
Corporate Status
 
Abbey
 
Dedication
 
Assumption of the Virgin Mary
 
Date Founded
 
1232
 
Date Terminated
 
1803; (reestablished 1835/6)
 
Religious Order
 
Cistercian
 
Rule
 
Benedictine
 
Foundation Information
 

The abbey was founded in 1232 by Ludmilla of Bohemia, the wife/widow of Ludwig I, duke of Bavaria, as an independent foundation. Ludmilla founded the convent a year after Ludwig's murder in Kelheimer in 1231 near Landshut on the land of the hospital of the Holy Ghost (Krausen, 91). It was probably settled by Cistercian nuns from the convent of Trebnitz in Schlesia, a foundation of Saint Hedwig (Wienand, 339). It was the first female Cistercian order in Bavaria (Krausen, 91). There is no definite documentary evidence of the convent's incorporation into the Cistercian order, however, the general chapter often dealt with matters from the convent. During the sixteenth and seventeenth century the general abbot also conducted visitations of the convent. The ties between the convent and the hospital of the Holy Ghost were dissolved as early as 1252.

 
Notable Heads
 

The first abbess of Selignethal was Agnes von Grünbach.

 
Other Ecclesiastical Relations
 

The father-abbot of the convent was the abbot of Kaisheim (already by 1285). In 1426 the task of visitation and of father-abbot was transferred to the abbot of Raitenhaslach. Since the second half of the sixteenth century the convent has been under the supervision of the abbots of Alderbach (Krausen, 91).

 
Visitations
 

During the sixteenth and seventeenth century the general abbot also conducted visitations of the convent.

 
Patrons/Benefactors
 

The convent benefitted from the patronage of the Wittelsbach family, which viewed the convent as one of its proprietary convents.

 
Social Characteristics
 

Choir nuns belonged primarily to the nobility. Two Wittelsbach princesses became nuns at Seligenthal.

 
Assets/Property
 

The foundation was primarily supported through income from villages of the parish of Eschlkam on the Bohemian border.

 
Income
 

In 1296 the convent acquired the highest jurisdiction for Gündelkofen and later acquired the same rights in other locations. The convent also had rights of patronage in eight locations, including S. Nikola in Landshut, S. Peter in Neuburg and Klattau in Bohemia (Krausen, 92).

 
Art & Artifacts
 

The convent was rich in artworks. The symbol of the convent was Mary sitting under a canopy with baby Jesus standing on the floor.

 
Architecture & Archaeology
 

The convent church was consecrated in 1259.

 
State Of Medieval Structure
 

The convent church was later redecorated in the Rococco style.

 
Manuscript Sources
 

The convent's archives are located in the Hauptstaatsarchiv in München (Munich) and in the Kirchenarchiv in München (Munich). Documents are also located in the Staatsarchiv in Landshut and in the convent archive in Seligenthal.

 
Secondary Sources
 

Das Wirken der Orden und Klöster in Deutschland
Die Klöster des Zisterzienserordens in Bayern
HUEMER, B. Verzeichnis der deutschen Cisterzienserinnenkloester. (StMBO 37, 1916).
SINNIGEN, P. Ansgar. Katholische Frauengenossenschaften Deutschlands, 348.
Das ehemalige Zisterzienserinnenkloster Seligenthal

 
Miscellaneous Information
 

It appears that the convent suffered from a loose discipline which often brought the attention of the superiors of the order and the summoning of nuns from Königsbruck (Krausen, 92). In 1768 the convent was forbidden from accepting novices, and in 1782 the abbess was required to establish a girls' school. In 1803 the convent was secularized and dissolved. The convent buildings, the church and all the convent's holdings were given to the bavarian university. In 1835/6 the convent was reestablished by a decision of King Ludwig I. The convent continues today and the sisters function as educators.

 
Manuscripts Produced
 

There is evidence of book production by the nuns of Seligenthal.

 
Clients/Tenants/Other
 

The ministerial family of Grießenbeck belonged to the dependents of the convent.

 
Conversi/ae and servants
 

The convent had both lay-sisters and lay-brothers, who probably belonged to the convent of Kaisheim.

 
Admin. Notes
 

More research necessary Hist. Staetten, 658.

 
Contributors
 
June Mecham
 
Date Started
 
1232
 
Date Finished
 
1803
 
Length
 
3137