Old Churches in Germany, Part XX
I got another one. *grin* It's fun collecting them.
St Mary Church (Marienkirche) Heiligenstadt is less famous than fe. Königslutter or Speyer, but it's a very pretty one. The building is a three nave Gothic hall church, that means the aisles have the same height as the nave, different from the basilica type with the lower aisles which was prevalent in the Romanesque style. There is no transept.
St. Mary Church, Heiligenstadt
Heiligenstadt is a small town in Thuringia, centre of the Catholic enclave called Eichsfeld. I had been there shortly after the frontier was opened, and things have changed a lot since then. The old houses in the centre and the churches have been renovated, and the place looks really pretty.
In the Middle Ages, Heiligenstadt belonged to the archbishopric of Mainz (which is interesting, because Mainz is pretty far away), and archbishop Siegfried II granted Heiligenstadt the rights of a town in 1227. It is centre of the Eichsfeld since 1540.St Mary Church, south side
The oldest part of the church is the Westwerk
with its two towers, erected about 1300. The naves date from the end of the 14th century, and the high choir to the east is the youngest part, built about 1420.
There must have been an older building, because a St Mary Church is mentioned in a chronicle from 1239 as the church of the town comunity.