....one of the best preserved medieval cities in Germany.
Imagine Martin Luther's father's delight as he sent his gifted son
to the leading University in Germany - the equivalent of Harvard
or Oxford. Today you can walk the same medieval cobbled streets
that Luther, Goethe and Bach walked. The magnificent Renaissance
buildings speak of the great prosperity of the town in the Middle
ages, due to the trade routes. You'll be fascinated by the Tradesman's
Bridge - the largest inhabited bridge in Northern Europe.
Erfurt was founded in 742 by Boniface and grew into one of Germany's
spiritual centers. How fitting that years later, Luther would read
the complete Bible for the first time and embark on a spiritual
search for truth which has impacted each one of us..
University in Erfurt was founded by wealthy merchants
in 1392. In 1816 the University was closed by the Prussians and
in 1945 it was almost completely destroyed. Today it's been restored
and you can also enjoy a visit to the traditional students’ district
of Erfurt, the Andreasviertel.
the student: Luther was sent to Erfurt University by
his father Hans, who wanted the best university for his son. At
that time it had approximately one thousand students and four
colleges: Theology, Liberal Arts, Medicine and Law. He studied
law, as his Father had wished, earning a liberal arts degree in
1502 and a Master's arts degree in February 1505. While he was
there, he learned Latin and cultivated his love of music. He also
continued his religious training, attending mass regularly and
praying daily. In 1503 while in the library, he found a rare copy
of the complete Bible. As he read, he realized that there was
so much more of God's word than the fragments used in Church services.
(Read more about of his life in Erfurt by clicking
here) Back to
Augustinian Monastery as built in 1277. In the
Second World War it was badly damaged but was rebuilt
in authentic historical style. The Monastery now serves as an internationally
renowned conference and seminar center for the Protestant Church
in Saxony. It houses a permanent exhibition that depicts the history
of the Bible and the history of the monastery. Since 1996 a group
of evangelical nuns from the order of St Benedict from the Casteller
Ring Community have been living, praying and working in the Monastery.
They conduct the church’s canonical prayers 4 times a day and attend
services in St Augustus Church.
the monk: Luther entered the Monastery on July 17, 1505
and joined the Augustinian Order of Hermit. While he was there,
he studied the Bible and teachings of the Catholic Church. He
memorized much of both the New and the Old Testament, reading
10 Psalms a day. His reading led him to see God as a righteous
judge and he became keenly aware of his own imperfection. He fulfilled
the rigorous duties of a monk, but compulsively, in a desperate
attempt to achieve forgiveness.(Read
more about of his life in Erfurt by clicking
(Domberg) was built in 1154, replacing Boniface's original building.
This is where you can see one of the largest bells in Europe - the
"Maria Gloriosa". When the Nazis were melting down church bells
to make munitions, this bell happily escaped. The 14th century stained-glass
windows are well worth a visit, as they show scenes from everyday
life. The cathedral is open May to October, Monday to Friday 9 -11.30am
and 12.30 - 5pm, Saturday 9 - 11.30am and 12.30 - 4.30 pm and Sunday
2-4pm. From November to April it opens Monday - Saturday 10 - 11.30
am and 12.30 - 4pm, Sunday 2-4pm. Back
Tradesman’s Bridge (Krämerbrücke) is the most
important secular building of the town. After repeated fires, it
was finally built as a stone construction in 1325 over the Gera
river ford. It is only bridge north of the Alps to be entirely built
over with inhabited houses! There are nearly 3 dozen houses, book
staffs, cafes and antique shops. The bridge had been financed by
local churches and monasteries and the merchants who lived on the
bridge had to pay tribute to them. In medieval times there were
churches at either end of the bridge and the Ägidienkirche can still
be seen today. Back
History Highlights in Erfurt:
University here from 1501-1505
- First read the Bible in 1503
- Entered the Augustinian Monastery in 1505
- Ordained as priest in 1507 in St Mary's Cathedral
on this site is presented for Christians to learn more about their heritage.
While every effort for accuracy has been made, please contact us if
you notice anything that needs to be brought to our attention.
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