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A view on some of Echternach's main landmarks from Ernzer Berg, close to the Liborius Chapel (Germany).

Echternach is city in eastern Luxembourg, is the oldest town (current population 4,610) in Luxembourg. The River Sauer (bottom of the picture) that flows past the town now forms the border between Luxembourg and Germany.

Echternach grew around the walls of the Abbey of Echternach, which was founded in 698 by St. Willibrord, an English monk of Ripon, who became the first bishop of Utrecht and worked to Christianize the Frisians. As bishop, he directed the monastery as abbot until his death in 739. It is in his honour that the dancing procession takes place annually on Whit Tuesday. This is the last traditional dancing procession in Europe.

Though the monks were displaced by secular canons of the bishop of Trier, 859 - 971, and though Willibrord's buildings burned down in 1017, the Romanesque basilica with symmetrical towers (church in the centre of the picture) still houses his tomb in its crypt. As the abbey, with a famous library and scriptorium flourished, the town of Echternach formed around the abbey's outer walls and was granted a city charter in 1236. The abbey was rebuilt in a handsome Baroque range in 1737. The monks were dispersed in 1797, and the abbey's contents and its famous library were auctioned off. Some of the library's early manuscripts are at the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris. A porcelain factory was established in the abbey, and the town declined, until the railroad brought tourists. The abbey now hosts a high school, actualy the one I attended ;-)

Within a small park in the centre of the pcture les the Echternach Orangerie, a Baroque building in the former claustral garden of Echternach Abbey, built around 1750 under Abbot Horman, probably after plans of Leopold Durand.

In the upper right part you notice the remainngs of the medieval walls with towers, which were like almost the entire town badly damaged in World War II and have been thoroughly restored.

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Additional Photos by Mike Schwebag (SchwebagMike) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 245 W: 14 N: 239] (1490)
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