The Piarist Church in Krems on the Danube, also Krems Frauenberg Church, is the oldest church in the city and offers a fantastic view. Mentioned in 1014 for the first time the church dominates the old town of Krems. Today’s structure was built on the remains of a Romanesque church. The portal shows the year 1477. In 1508 the late Gothic hall church was consecrated. Due to its stylistic proximity to the Viennese Dombauhütte, it is also known as the “little sister” of St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna. In its late Gothic form, this church is one of the most important in Lower Austria. Especially noteworthy are the rich ribbed vaulting and elegant tracery forms. Some of which already point to the Renaissance.
Jesuits and Piarists
In 1616 Jesuits built a monastery and a college. When handed over to the Jesuits in 1616, the women’s tower crowned by four corner turrets was excluded because it served as a city tower (fire station, bell signal) for the citizens. As an indication, it bears – as the only church tower in Austria – on its top no cross, but the coat of arms. In 1773, Empress Maria Theresa abolished the Jesuit order and commissioned the Piarists to take over the college.
The interior of the piarist church Krems impresses with richly profiled pillars, capitals and other outstanding examples of Gothic craftsmanship. In the Baroque period the church was refurbished. The high altar was built in 1756 to plans by Jakob Christoph Schletterer. The altarpiece depicting the Assumption of Mary was provided by Martin Johann Schmidt (»Kremser Schmidt«), as were three other altarpieces and the wall painting in the Franz Xaver Chapel. The seven Stations of the Cross on the outer wall date from the middle of the 17th century. There is a crypt under the church. Piled up inside are the bones of the former cemetery.
More information about the Piarist church (German.)