Deep in the forests of Thüringen stands one of Germany's most impressive church ruins. Built in the 12th century for the Benedictine nuns, it's a prime example of a Romanesque abbey church. Unfortunately the abbey was dissolved in 1542 and after that the church served a stone quarry for buildings in the region. A big fire in 1600 finished things off until restorations works began in the 18th century.
The romantic ruins that still stand today, give a wonderful impression of the former glory of the place. Goethe and Schiller were among the visitors here and many have followed since.
Stones of the Monastery were re-used for Gehren Castle, a church in Rudolstadt and also inhabitants of Paulinzella made use of the stones for their own houses.
The monastery became even more dilapidated after a fire at the beginning of the 17th century caused by lightning.
Paulina, daughter of a high-ranking royal civil servant, founded the monastery between 1102 and 1105. In 1106 it was approved by the Pope.