Summary Page: Former House
Circary at the Time: Hungaria
Years of Activity: saec. 13
Gallery: Click Here
Map: Click Here (Source: © MapQuest http://www.mapquest.com)
Monasticon Praemonstratense: (I, 449)
Approximate modern location: In the German-settled region of Transylvania, Romania. The city is now called Brasov.
Elm-Number [See below]: None.*
Other Comments: A parthenon for nuns.
Below are the words of a Friend of Our Order, Mr. Sergiu Gavrila:
Brasov/Kronstadt, like Sibiu/Hermanstadt, belongs to the German colonized area of Transylvania, which was done under the control of the Hungarian crown. Among the foreign influences in the area, German is by far the strongest. The first settlers came at the end of the 12th century, increasing in number at the beginning of the 13th century.
Regarding the precise location of the Premonstratensian convent at Kronstadt-Brasov, I'm afraid that no 100% precise location is known. The Mongol invasion of 1241 destroyed a lot and forced many settlers to relocate.
There are two possible locations.
- One of them is one of the oldest churches in Transylvania, but it was probably built in the second half of the 13th century (after 1260).
- Another much more likely location is in the center of the old medieval town. At this location is today a high school, where some years ago, during working on the building foundation, the remains of a religious building from the begin of the 12th century was found. This building seams to belong to a complex called "Catherine's Court", and contained a church and accommodations for nuns or beguines (retired) women. This complex should have belonged at beginning to the Premontre Order, until some time later, it was taken over by the Benedictine Order (from Sibiu/Hermanstadt). The church of this house was probably dedicated to Saint Catherine. This complex was found few meters from the town's main church, which was built at the beginning of the 14th century over an older, 13th century romanesque style church. It was, so to say, in the middle of the town and life of the German settlers.
You may know also, that there is a mention of a Premonstratensian convent-monastery in a catalog known as "Scheftlariensis", in a place called "Drozza", existing at the end of the 13th century. Some historians from Romania, but not many, believe that Drozza is actually Kronstadt, but I'm not familiar with the arguments for this belief.
Also, I believe that there is a link between the name of Kronstadt and the beginning of monastical life in Kronstadt. The main church of Kronstadt, today popularly known as the Black Church (because of the color), was dedicated before the reformation to the Saint Mary. Maybe the crown in the name and Coat of Arms came from it (Saint Mary as the Queen of Heaven).
Thre is also a connection between Koblenz in Germany and Kronstadt. There is a crown in the coat of arms of Koblenz, which was also the first German place where the Teutonic Knights had a house (since 1216 I think) outside Palestine. This is also the period when the Teutonic Knights came to Transylvania (1211 to 1225), and contributed shortly but significantly to the beginning of Kronstadt.
Later the Benedictine Order, which took over some of previous monasteries in town, had influenced the coat of arms, by adding the tree stump under the crown. The could also be a link with a "Saint Corona", who is honored in the region.
* 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.