Sankt Jakob History

The History of Evangelisch St. Jakob, Nuremberg

Evangelisch St. Jakob is one of the pilgrim churches towards Santiago di Compostella. Starting here pilgrims can walk the small pilgrims way through the middle part of Franconia or the big one which is leading to Santiago di Compostella in Spain, a famous pilgrim place since the 10th century.

The church too has a long history. Around 1100 a king’s court was founded with a small Romanesque chapel. In 1209 the emperor Otto IV gave the German Order of Knights (Deutschritterorden) the chapel as a gift. The chapel was then torn down to build a bigger church in its place.

In a manuscript it is said that minnesinger Tannhäuser, famous through the opera by Richard Wagner, was buried next to this church.

During Reformation St. Jakob became a Protestant church though it still belonged to the Roman Catholic German Order of Knights. From now on all services were following the Lutheran order.

During the 30-year war the Swedish King Gustav Adolf disowned the German Order of Knights. The church was renovated and later at the Peace of Westphalia returned to the Order.

In 1810 St. Jakob became the third Protestant Lutheran church of the city of Nuremberg.

During the Second World War St. Jakob was heavily damaged and mainly destroyed. It was reconstructed after the war but only in 1951 part of it could be consecrated again. In 1962 the new building was finished.

Today the church contains many artefacts which were brought into safety before the church was destroyed. One of the finest is an Anna Selbdritt by Veit Stoß. Anna Selbdritt is the name of a specific form of portray showing Anna the mother of Mary together with Mary often as young girl and baby Jesus.