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a VirtualTourist member from Philadelphia


Ulm Minster

One of the main sights I wanted to visit is the Ulm minster. I was very dissappointed to learn that it is now a protestant church. Does that mean that there is very little inside worth seeing, as was true of the churches in the Netherlands also? It is not a religious thing for me, just that I find protestant churches, especially when they were once catholic, to be stark, cold and boring and to have lost artistic interest. It would not be worth stopping in Ulm just to see a tall tower, though I wanted to see it too.

7 Answers

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from Germany

The art connected to the building mostly survived. Pre 1530 (when 87% of the citizens voted to become protestant) are e.g.
choir stalls
some stained glass windows
check the choir stalls (1469-74) and stained glass windows sections. Esp. the choir stalls are worth the visit. Interestingly the figures are based on Greek and Roman writers/philosophers. And the proportions of women among them.

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from Germany

more about the choir stall concept (you may want to brush up your Latin or German):

But you can also just click on the names ;-)

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from Boston

And with a bit of luck you may hear, as I did, someone practicing on the magnificent 19th century organ.
I know what you mean though---most Dutch churches leave me cold. They seem so scoured, irrespective of their good Gothic bones.

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from Philadelphia

Thanks for your information. I guess the Lutherans were not as iconoclastic as the Calvinists. Is it also true that the spire is only one hundred years old. I thought it was part of the original structure.
I am a bit of a purist about architecture. I don't much care for add-ons and renovations. I realize much of Germany's architecture was damaged in the last war, but I am hoping to see as much 'original' work as I can. That is one reason that Regensburg & Bamberg are high on my list of places to see.

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from Cape Town

In 1377 the construction of the Minster of Ulm began. The church was consecrated in 1405.

Consecration however didn't at the same time mean the completion of the church. The "finishing touches" took several hundred years more. Why? Well if you stand in front of one the largest churches in the world you will probably know...

As you correctly assumed, iconoclasm led to the destruction of a lot of the original works of art there.

And the main tower indeed was completed from 1885 - 1890. Architect was August Beyer who later worked on the Minster of Bern in the historic downtown district (a UNESCO World Heritate Site) of the capital of Switzerland.

The interior of the Minster of Ulm indeed appears to be "cold" (well, it's a Gothic church) but certainly not boring. It is relatively stark, without a lot of ornamentation - yet there's still so much to admire there.

By the way: if you're interested in more opulent churches you will find a lot of them in the adjacent region of Upper Swabia. Just follow the Upper Swabian Baroque Route where you will find many jewels of Baroque art and architecture. If you're interested in elesiastical art (especially Baroque and Rococo) you will be in heaven there...

I hope I convinced you now to actually visit Ulm, didn't I? :-)

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from Philadelphia

We have not decided yet all the places we want to visit. Since there is only so much time for us, we want to see as much as possible and the best examples of various architecture, art, stained glass, and just plane natural sites.
Is the Ulm Munster a far walk from the city train station? We may combine Ulm & Augsburg for one day trip out of Munich.

answered by
a VirtualTourist member from Cape Town

==> "Is the Ulm Munster a far walk from the city train station? We may combine Ulm & Augsburg for one day trip out of Munich."

It's a 10 minute walk through the city's main shopping street from Ulm train station to the Minster.

I think it's a good idea to combine Augsburg and Ulm on a day trip out of M√ľnchen. If I were you I would visit Ulm in the morning, have lunch there and then travel eastbound to Augsburg in the afternoon.

Have a nice trip!

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