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Osek Monastery

GPS: 50°37‘15.069“N, 13°41‘41.748“E


The history of a beautiful monastery of the Order of Cistercians in Osek, which is situated in the foothills of the Ore Mountains, is more than eight hundred years long. Today the monastery is a cultural and tourist centre offering a look into the history from the Romanesque period through the Gothic style to Baroque and provides unrepeatable cultural experiences in a fairy-tale environment. From the 12th century when the Order of Cistercians were invited to us the monastery has gone through a stormy boom and decline, too. It was invaded by armies, plundered by the Branibors, and burnt down by the Hussites. In the 15th century it was damaged, the monks were murdered and the property was taken away. Rudolf II abolished it in 1580, however, the Pope invalidated this decision. The manor was confiscated during the Thirty Years War, but the monastery was given back to the Cistercians later. Its fame culminated in the 18th century when it was reconstructed in the Baroque style. It was damaged by bombing at the end of the Second World War. German Cistercians were expelled after 1945 and in 1950 the government established an internment camp here for monks and priests who were transported to prisons and uranium mines for forced work. Later it became a charity home for nuns. Cistercians got the monastery back after 1989. In July 1992 the global Society of Friends of Osek Monastery was founded and the monastery itself was declared a cultural heritage site in 1995. Its dominant feature is the large monastery Church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary, which is an originally Romanesque three-nave basilica that was reconstructed in the Baroque style. Due to its length of 76 metres it belongs to the largest religious constructions in Bohemia. The most valuable part of the old monastery is an early Gothic capitular hall with a stone reading pulpit. 

How to get there? The monastery is situated in the centre of the town of Osek on the road from Dubí by Teplice to Litvínov. Premises open to the public: Entrance area – an information and tourist centre, a gallery, a church, a cloister, a capitular hall.


 Another historic sight is the nearby castle of Rýzmburk situated approximately 2 km above Osek in the Ore Mountains in a pass between Špičák and Stropník; for a detailed history, picture gallery and virtual tour of the castle go to www.hradosek.cz.


Every year, on the third weekend of August, the town holds the „Osek Fair“, which belongs to the major cultural events of the region, as well as a historical market place in the premises of the Osek monastery.

Responsible: Michaela Tobiasova
Created / changed: 25.6.2014 / 25.6.2014


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