Summary Page: Former House
Name: Brzesko-Hebdow, Assumption B.M.V., and Ss. Peter and Paul
Circary at the Time: Polonia
Years of Activity: 1141>-1819
Gallery: Click Here
Map: Click Here (Source: © MapQuest http://www.mapquest.com)
Monasticon Praemonstratense (I, 339)
Approximate modern location: In the city of the same name northeast of Krakow, Poland
Elm-Number [See below]: 370*
The following comments were generously supplied by Dr. Joanna Szczesna, of the Catholic University of Lublin. We thank her for this wonderful contribution to our website:
A full understanding of Brzesko-Hebdow is very challenging.
There is a Polish-language source which discusses Nowe-Brzesko (New Brzesko) region, and Hebdow is located near this very small town. But there is no clear evidence which shows precisely when Brzesko started to be known as Hebdow. After reviewing the available literature, my conclusion is that it was probably after the locaton of New Brzesko was established in 1278. It is definite, however, that at the time of the foundation of this house, the locality was known as Brzesko, which derives from the word "brzeg" - or - river bank.
The name Hebdow first appeared in the sources in 1238. The most probable theory for its derivation is from a man's name "Chebdo". Chebdo was an owner of the village of Pomianowa Wola. Once (in the second half of the 12th century) he donated this village to the cloister. Soon the old name was replaced with "Chebdow". In Polish, the letters "H" and "CH" are very close in sound, and both were used interchangeably as far as orthography was concerned. Thus we have an auditory and orthographic evolution from "Chebdow" to "Hebdow" by the 18th century.
Under these circumstances the name of the house should most fittingly appear in your website as Brzesko-Hebdow.
Another challenge is whether the cloister in Brzesko-Hebdow belonged to the Premonstratensian Order from the beginnings of its foundation. There is a possibility that at first (ca. 1149-1180) it was a house of another branch of Canons Regular, and at the end of the 12th Century it affiliated to the Premonstratensian Order.
A paper presented by the Polish Historian Dr. Deptula, of the Catholic University of Lublin (available in Polish only, unfortunately) discusses this point, and research into this possibility is still being conducted.
For more general comments about the founding of Norbertine houses in Poland, click here.
* This listing (and the numbers, with a few adjustments after 1995) is based on the map contained in Kaspar Elm's Norbert von Xanten: Adliger, Ordensstifter, Kirchenfürst, Wienand Verlag, Köln, 1984, page 328-329.