Saturday, 1 October 2016

Abbey of St. Gall

Today I will take you to St. Gallen, the capital of canton (and yes, you have guessed it) St. Gallen.


The city owns its name to an Irish monk, Saint Gall(us), who has founded there a monastery, back in 612. I believe this is really amazing that they are able here to track their abbots back to the beginning of the seventh century!


Around 720, another monk, Othmar, founded here an Abbey that remains the crown jewel of the city. The Abbey comprises a few elements, including the cathedral ...


... the "office" buildings ...


... and an amazing library. Altogether, the convent o St., Gallen is a UNESCO World Heritage site.


Let's enter first the cathedral.


The ceiling is decorated in dark colours.


The altar is closed by a golden fence. 


The organ in the back is smaller than in most cathedrals I have visited so far.


Below the organ you will find the tomb of Saint Othmar.


The Bible read in the cathedral was printed in a style similar to the one used in the Middle Ages, with beautiful paintings.


I believe it is time now that we move on to the library. Let's take this long corridor.



In the antechamber you can see the cathedral in its full size.


 We need to go up to the first floor.


The Library of the St. Gallen Abbey is the house of many priceless books, some of which were created in the ninth century. Since it was far before Gutenberg discovered the craft of printing, the monks were re-writing books on specially prepared pieces of leather.


Such books are of course very delicate so it is forbidden to take pictures inside. But I can show you one of the postcards that I have bought there.  The ceiling is again decorated with beautiful paintings. The books stand on elegant shelves.


But to be honest, the thing that I liked the most was the fact that in the inner courtyard, between the cathedral and the library, there is a football pitch!


I believe even Saint Gallus would like it. He seems to have been a nice fellow.


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