See 1600-1918>>

Worldwide Guide to Women in Leadership

CHRONOLOGICAL
LIST OF
PRINCESS ABBESSES
800-1600


In German: Fürstäbtissin/Reichsäbtissin,
French: Abbesse Princesse/Princesse d'Empire
and Dutch: Vorstin-Abdis
and other Abbesses with territorial or
ecclesiastical powers.
Also see women clergy

Among the many principalities of The Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation were a number of Ecclesiastical Territories were ruled by an Abbess with the title of Princess-Abbess (Fürstäbtissin or Reichsäbtissin). The Imperial Immediacies (Reichsfreiheit or Reichsunmittelbarkeit) held a privileged feudal and political status under the direct authority of the Holy Roman Emperor and the Imperial Diet, without any intermediary Liege lord(s) and therefore had the right to collect taxes and tolls and held juridical rights themselves. The territories held seats in the College of Prelates of Swabia or the Rhine, which held a joint vote in the College of Princes of the Diet of the Holy Roman Empire. Many of the numerous other minor Convents, Abbeys and Ladies Chapters functioned as landowners, regional administrators and fiefholders and exercised the lower court right.


 

Around 837 Reigning Abbess Ermentrude of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

The Abbey was not spared the troubles besetting Kingdom and Church in seventh century Gaul. But there is no document left to shed light on this period. But Ermentrude not only extended the enclosure of the monastery and enlarged the buildings of the community but is also at the origin of the first elements of the village of Jouarre. She organised the cultivation of the lands on the plateau, promoted the creation of the first hospice for the sick and of places of refuge such as the "Pitancerie" for giving food to the poor, for pilgrims and vagrants, and a leper house. And in order to save everybody. At that time too, there was a mint for striking money, by privilege granted by King Charles the Bald. There still today exist a few rare silver coins witnessing to the fact. This was a time of material and spiritual prosperity. However the invading Normans came up the Seine from Paris to the valley of the Marne. Around 887-888, the Vikings devastated the region and, very probably, the abbey. The silence of the archives in the tenth century suggest a long period of extreme poverty and dereliction.


Mathilde I von Quedlinburg

966-99 Princess-Abbess Mathilde I von Sachsen of Quedlinburg (Germany)
997-99 Regent of the Holy Roman Empir
e

Daughter of Emperor Otto I, she was appointed the first Princess-Abbess - Reichsäbtissin - of Quedlinburg. She also acted as "domina imperialis", and followed her brother Otto II on journey to Italy and acted regent for her nephew, Otto III and as his representative in Sachsen with the additional titles of Metropolitana of Quedlinburg and Matrixcia of Sachsen (Substitute and Representative of the Emperor). She lived (955-999). 


Adelheid I von Sachsen of Quedlingburg

999-1043 Princess-Abbess Adelheid I von Sachsen of Quedlinburg
1014-43 Reigning Abbess of Gernrode, Froshe, Vreden
1039-43 Reigning Abbess of Gandersheim(Germany)

Daughter of Emperor Otto II and Theophano. Already as a child her aunt, Mathilde, had placed her in the Chapter of Quedlinburg. In 984 she was taken hostage by Heinrich of Bavaria, who wanted to be king of Germany and saw the seven year old girl as a possible tool, since she had been considered a candidate for the succession in the event of her brother's death, but she was liberated by a large Saxon force Her nieces were also Abbesses: Sophia of Gandersheim, Ida of Sankt Marias Köln, Hedwig of Neuss, Theophano of Nevilles and Mathilda of Villach und Didenkirchen. Adelheid lived (977-1043 or 1045).


 

Around 1000 Reigning Abbess Godilde of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Sister of Lambert, Abbeot of Saint -Bertin. As Abbess she held semi-epicopal powers.


 

1001-39 Reigning Abbess Sophie von Sachsen of Gandersheim, Abbess of Essen and Vreden

The daughter of Otto II, she joined the Chapter of Gandersheim at the age of four, and aided her brother, Otto III in the politics of the Holy Roman Empire, 994 she took part in the Reichstag of Sohlingen, and went with him to Rome in 996, and she actually functioned as the First Lady at Court, as "Consors Imperii" 996-1001. After Otto's death she and her sister, Abbess Adelheid of Quedlinburg participated in the "Assembly of the Great of Sachsen" in the Pfalz Werla, which chose their cousin, Heinrich IV of Bayern as the new king under the name of Heinrich II, and they both took part in his coronation. She had been elected Abbess in 1001 but was in dispute with the Bishop of Hillesheim. Also Heinrich's successor, Konrad, made contact with the two Princesses after his election because of their high rank and stature in the Empire. Sophie was also Abbess of Essen and Vreden. She lived (975-1039).


Uta I von Niedermünster in Regensburg 1003-25 Reigning Abbess Uta I von Kirchberg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Also known as Uda, she is considered as one of the most important ladies in the history of the chapter. She gave the monks in the neighbouring St. Emmeram the task of making an expensive Evangelista, altar-book, which still exists. During her reign the Convent was placed directly under the protection of the king of Germany.

 

1020-after 27 Princess-Abbess Kunigunde I von Bayern of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)
Her grandchild, Aribo III handed it over to the protection of Emperor Heinrich II, who granted it immunity and raised it to the status of an Imperial Immediacy(reichsunmittelbaren Abtei) - the only one in Austria - and removed the Chapter from the influence of the Metropolits of Salzburg. She was sister of Aribos, and was the first abbess with the title of a Princess of the Realm (geistlichen Reichsfürstin).

 

Circa 1020-40 Dame Abbesse Berscinda of Remiremont (France)

Circa 1020-35 Dame Abbesse Berscinda
Daughter of Gerard/Gerhard II von Metz, Count of Elsass  and Eva von Luxemburg. She lived (After 1013-40)


 

1025-52 Reigning Abbess Heilka I von Rothenburg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
During the reign of her predecessor the Ladies Chapter for Noble Ladies was placed directly as a fief under the king of Germany.

Hazecha von Gernrode

1044-46 Countess-Abbess Hazecha von Ballenstedt of Gernrode and Frose (Germany)

According to the Annales Gernrodensis by the Chronicer Andreas Popperodt, she was in office for 19 years, but only 2 decrees are known from her hand from 1044, when she asked King Heinrich III to confirm her election, and 1046 she is mentionend in a large donation given by her brother-in-law, Markgrave Ekkehard II. von Meißen. She was daughter of Count Adalbert I of von Ballenstedt and Hidda von Ostmark.


Beatrix aus der Haus der Salier

1045-62 Princess-Abbess Beatrix I von Franken of Quedlinburg
1045-61 Reigning Abbess of Gandersheim (Germany)

The only child of Emperor Heinrich III and Gunhild of Denmark (The daughter of Knud the Great of Denmark-England and Emma of Normandy), and lived (1038-62).


 

1046-56/63 Countess-Abbess Hedwiga I von Ballenstedt of Gernrode (Germany)

Also known as Hedwig, Heilika or Hazecha, she was probably the sister of Count Esicho and Uta, who was married to Ekkehards II von Meißen. After the death of Abbess Adelheid in 1043) Emperor III in Ballenstedt appointed her abbess. Her brother partly gave parts of the lands he inherited from their sister to the abbey, and for her family it added to their prestige that she became abbess


 

1047-68/70 Dame Abbesse Oda d'Alsace of Remiremont (France)

Also known as Ode de Luxembourg, she was daughter of Gérard d'Alsace comte de Metz and his wife, Gisèle.


 

Around 1052 Princess-Abbess Wilburgis of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)
She was head of the so-called Kanonissen or Chorfrauenstift it was founded around 1000 by Countess Palatine Adala of Bavaria. The abbot or provost administered the estates of the clerical ladies, arranged the statues and appointed the prioress.

 

1052-64 Reigning Abbess Gertrud I von Hals of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Member of a countly family.

 

1056/63-circa 1118 Countess-Abbess Hedwig II von Stade of Gernrode (Germany)
It is not certain when she started her reign.

 

1062-95 Princess-Abbess Adelheid II von Franken of Quedlinburg, Reigning Abbess of Gandersheim (Germany)

The Abbess of Gandersheim from 1061, she succeeded half-sister, Beatrix I von Franken. In 1070 the abbey and church burned down and it too about 60 years before the new church was inaugurated. She was daughter of Emperor Heinrich III and Agnes de Puitou, and lived (1048-92).


 

1064-70 Reigning Abbess Mathilde I von Luppurg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Her surname might have been Lupburg.

 

1065-1116 Reigning Abbess Elisabeth of Montvilliers (France)

Started rebuilding the chapter after it had been ravaged by the Vikings 200 years before.


 

Circa 1066-? Princess-Abbess Richardis of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

She recived the full pastorial rights for the Church of the Chapter from the Archbishop of Salzburg in 1070. Margaretha I also reigned sometime in the 1000s, and Hemma at a not known time in the 1000s/1100s.

 

1070-89 Reigning Abbess Eilika von Northeim of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Daughter of Count Otto von Northeim and Richenza von Schwaben
In a list by Paricius a Heylca, Duchesss of Franken, is named as Abbess in the period 1088-89, but she has later been identified as being identical with Eilika.

 

1070-before 1110 Dame Abbesse Giséle II von Lothringen of Remiremont and Saint-Pierre-aux-Nonnains in Metz (France)
According to some sources she falsified a document that stated that she optained independent political position of the abbey from Emperor Heinrich IV on 28. September 1070 and the document showing that Pope Urban II placed the abbey directly under his protection in 1088 was also falce. She lived (1070-1114).

 

1073 Reigning Abbess Gertrudis of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Her origin is not known.

 

1074-88 Reigning Abbess Mathilde I von Lupburg  of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
It is not totally clear who reigned at this time, but a list in the Church of Niedermünster puts Mathilde in charge during this period, followed by Heylca II von Franken, who is identical with Eilika von Nordheim.

 

1089-1103 Reigning Abbess Uda II von Marburg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Since 1002 the Reichsstift Niedermünster in Regensburg had been placed directly under the king as the other states in Germany, it was granted royal protection and, immunity.

 

1095-1103 Princess-Abbess Eilika of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Possibly a member of the Billung-family, and was mentioned as Dechaness in 1069. The source of her tenure is an inscription on a coin.


 

1096-1104 Countess Abbess Adelheid III of Gandersheim (Germany)

A member of the Imperial Family.


 

Around 1102 Reigning Abbess Mathilde de Coucy of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

Member of the family of Seigneurs de Coucy.


 

1102 Reigning Abbess Agnès I of the Royal Abbey ofJouarre (France)

As Abbess she had great authority in the region, organising fairs and markets, dispensing justice, appointing priests, having the right to arbitrate in distribution of the lands.


 

1103-09 Reigning Abbess Richenzca II von Zolling of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
During the 10th century the Church of the Chapter, which dated back to 700, was replaced by a new building. The present church dates back to the middle of the 12th century.

 

1103-26 Princess-Abbess Agnes I of Poland of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Daughter of Duke Wladislaw of Poland and Judith, the daughter of Emperor Heinrich III of Germany.


 

1104-1111 Countess-Abbess Frederun of Gandersheim (Germany)

Also known as Vrederun, she was member of an important ruling families of the Holy Roman Empire.


 

1109-16 Reigning Abbess Mathilde II von Kirchberg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
The third member of her countly family to lead the chapter and territory.

 

1111-25 Countess-Abbess Agnes I of Gandersheim (Germany)

The niece of Emperor Heinrich IV der Salier, she was the last Abbess from the Imperial family, and lived (1091-1125)


 

1114-1161/4 Dame Abbesse Judith I de Lorraine of Remiremont 
1139-1161/4 Dame Abbesse of Saint-Pierre-aux-Nonnains in Metz (France)
Also known as Judith de Vaudemont, she succeeded her aunt Gisèle II and was in dispute over the authority over the chapter with her counsins, Simon I and Mathieu I and Lorraine, and did not hesitate to appeal to Emperor Konrad III to maintain her rights. She was daughter of Thierry II of Lorraine and Hedwig von Formbach.

 

1115-49 Reigning Abbess Pétronille de Chemillé of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
A cousin of Abbot Geoffrey of Vendôme she had married into the family of the lords of Chemillé. At the time of her death there were more than 50 mixed monasteries in the order, headed by a female superior, distributed across the region bounded by northern Champagne, Lyonnais, and Aragon. It was the largest and wealthiest federation of monasteries for women in Western Europe.

 

1116-26 Reigning Abbess Reichzca III von Abensberg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Member of a noble family that married into other high-ranking families such as Hohenzollern and Cilli.

 

After 1116 Reigning Abbess Matilda FitzRoy of Montvilliers (France)

She was daughter of King Henry I of England and Isabelle de Beaumont-le-Roger. Her father had one surviving ligitmate daughter - Empress Mathilde, who was heir to the throne and reigned shortly before she was deposed. He had at least 20 illigitimate children.


 

1118-52 Countess-Abbess Hedwiga III von Seeburg of Gernrode (Germany)

During his lifetime Margrave Gero I donated Geronisroth, the villages Dörfer Badeborn, Groß- und Klein-Alsleben, Oster- und Westeregeln as well as Gröningen, and after his death the abbey and the Provosty of Frose inherited all of his possessions. Margrave Ekkehard II and Meißen und Hedwig von Seeburg added to the wealth by further donations. The name of her successor is not known. The next known Abbess is Richenza/Rikinza, who was elected in 1205. 


 

1119-37 Princess-Abbess Ida III von Calw of Essen (Germany)
She was born as Pfalzgräfin bei Rhine, and as Reichsfürstin (Princess of the Realm) she had the right of vote in the College of the Prelates of the Rhine, which held one joint vote in Ecclesiastical Bench of the Council of Princes in the Imperial Diet of the Holy Roman Empire.

 

1122-31 Reigning Abbess Christine of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Secular and temporal ruler of the chapter and the secular lordships.


 

1125-30 Countess-Abbess Berta I of Gandersheim (Germany)

As Abbess with countly rank, she was semi-independent ruler of the secular territories of the chapter.


 

1126-37 Princess-Abbess Gerburg von Kappenberg of Quedlinburg (Germany)

During her reign the fights between the Welfs and Staufs for the kingship of Germany started and the city was occupied.


 

1126-30 Reigning Abbess Reichzca IV von Dornburg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Since 1002 the Reichsstift Niedermünster in Regensburg had been placed directly under the king as the other states in Germany, it was granted royal protection and, immunity.

 

1130-36 Reigning Abbess Heilka III von Kirchberg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Followed on the post by Kunigunde II von Kirchberg.

 

1130-52 Countess-Abbess Luitgard II of Gandersheim (Germany)

She reformed the convents of Clus and Brunshausen, which belonged to the abbey. In 1148 a Princely Assembly (Fürstentag) took place in the chapter.


 

1131/33-40 Reigning Abbess Ogiva of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Also known as Ogina


 

1136-77 Reigning Abbess Kunigunde II von Kirchberg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Elected to succeed Heylca III von Kirchberg.

 

1137-40 Princess-Abbess Emma of Essen (Germany)
Elected as successor to Ida III.

Fürstäbtissin Beatrix II von Quedlinburg

1138-60 Princess-Abbess Beatrix II von Winzenburg of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Mentioned as Abbess of Neuenheersee bei Paderborn in 1123. She was daughter of Count Herman I and Countess Hedwig, regent of the county from 1122. She was also sister-in-law of Duke Albrechts des Bären of Sachsen. (d. 1160).

 

1140-74/78 Reigning Abbess Clarice de Someringhem of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Held semi-bishopal authority and secular jurisdiction of her territory.


 

1146-54/62 Reigning Abbess Jutta Ida of Werl-Arnsberg of Herford (Germany)

Only daughter and heir of Count Friedrich I von Werl-Arnsberg and Adelheid von Limburg. She and her first husband, Gottfried II, Count von Cappenberg had both entered a convent. After his death in 1127 she decided to leave the Chapter and married Gottfried von Kuic (Cuyk) (d. 1168) and had her only child, Heinrich I. Graf von Arnsberg (d. 1185). It seems that she went back to the Imperial Immediate (Reichsfreie) Chapter and became an Abbess under the name of Jutta von Arnsberg in 1146, she lived  (circa 1100/05-after 1154)


 

Before 1148-after 78 Princess-Abbess Adelheid von Sponheim of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

Also known as Alhedis.

 

1149-55 Reigning Abbess Mathilde I d'Anjou of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
She was the daughter of Fulk, King of Jerusalem, and widow of William, the eldest son of Henry I, of England

 

1152-84 Countess Abbess Adelheid IV von Sommerschenburg of Gandersheim (Germany)

The Pfalzgräfin or Countess Palatine was in close contact with Hildgard von Bingen, whom she has brought up.


 

Around 1152 Abbess Nullius Febronia of the Monestary of Goleto (Italy)

The chapter was funded in 1085 by Saint Guglielmo as a doubble monastery. In 1506 Pope Giulio II issued a decree supressing the chapter, which took place by the death of the last Abbess in 1515. She held semi episcopal authority and was ruler of the feudal territories surrounding the Abbey and built a famous tower to protect the Abbey and its surrounding territory from the attacking Longobards.


 

1155-80 Reigning Abbess Audeburge de Haute-Bruyère of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
Haute-Bruyère is a city in present day's Belgium.

 

1160-61 Princess-Abbess Meregart of Quedlinburg (Germany)

She was followed on the post by Pfalzgräfin Adelheid von Sachsen-Sommerschenburg.


Fürstäbtissin Adelheid III von Quedlinburg, Princess of Sachsen-Sommerschenburg

1161-84 Princess-Abbess Adelheid III von Sommerschenburg of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Daughter of Pfalzgraf Friedrich II of Sachsen-Sommerschenburg and Luitgard von Stade. She was the sole heir of her brother Adalbert von Sommerschenburg, who died 1179, but since she had no chance of prevailing against Heinrich der Löwe, who saw the chance of strengthening his position in the Eastern part of Germany, she sold her rights to the Archbishop of Magdeburg. She was also Abbess of Gandersheim (1152-53), and lived (1130/35-84).


 

1161/64-89 Dame Abbesse Euphronia de Lorraine of Remiremont (France) 

Also known as Fronica she was daughter of Duke Dietrich II. de Châtenois of Lothringen


 

1163-70 Reigning Abbess Lutgard I of Herford (Germany)

Also known as Ludgard. The next known Abbess was Eilika from circa 1180.


 

1174/78-1228 Reigning Abbess Mathilde I of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Also known as Mahaut, she was daughter of Henri, Catelain de Bourbourg


 

1177-80 Reigning Abbess Tutta II von Falkenstein of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Probably member of the Countly family of Falkenstein bei Brannenburg in Bayern.

 

Around 1180s Dame Abbesse Cunegundes of Remiremont (France) 

The chronology for the period is not clear, and therefore the exact dates of her reign is not known.


 

Around 1180s Dame Abbesse Euphemia of Remiremont (France) 

She was Lady of the City of Remiremont and more than 70 other seigneurities in the surrounding territories.


 

1180-90 Reigning Abbess Adelheid I von Wolffershausen of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Wolffershausen was a village in Thüringen.

Reichsfreie Äbtissin Eilica von Herford

Circa 1180-1215/17 Reigning Abbess Eilica of Herford (Germany)

Succeeded by Gertrud II zur Lippe, who was in office until 1233.


 

1180-89 Reigning Abbess Gilles of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
Also appears as Gillette in the sources.

 

Around 1181 Abbess Nullius Ermelinda of the Monestary of Aguileia (Italy)

Held temporal and secular authority over the territory and held semi episcopal authority. The Italian version of her title was Badessa del Monastero benedettino di Santa Maria extra muros di Aquileia.


1184-1203 Princess-Abbess Agnes II von Ostmark und Meissen of Quedlinburg (Germany)

She was daughter of Margrave Konrad I and Luitgard. She lived (before 1145-1203).


 

1184-96 Countess Abbess Adelheid V von Hessen of Gandersheim (Germany)

Her title was "Edle" or Noble.


 

1187-90 Reigning Abbess María Sol of the Royal Monastery of of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Also known as Misol, she was the first abbess of the Monastery, and at a General Chapter of the Cistercians held in 1189, she was made Abbess General of the Order for the Kingdom of Leon and Castile, with the privilege of convoking annually a general chapter at Burgos.

 

Before 1188-1230 Princess-Abbess Otilia von Gutenberg of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

It was the only Chapter with the status of an Imperial Immediacy (reichsunmittelbaren Abtei) in Austria.

 

1189-94 Reigning Abbess Mathilde II de Flandre of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
Member of the Countly family of Flanders.

 

1189-1211 Dame Abbesse Clémence de Lunéville of Remiremont (France)
Member of a noble family from Lorraine, where the chapter was also situated.

 

1190-1205 Reigning Abbess-General María Gutiérrez I of the Royal Monastery of of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

She exercised an unlimited secular authority over more than fifty villages, held her own courts, granted letters dismissorial for ordination, and issued licenses authorizing priests, within the limits of her abbatial jurisdiction, to hear confessions, to preach, and to engage in the cure of souls. She was privilege also to confirm Abbesses, to impose censures, and to convoke synods.

 

1190-97 Reigning Abbess Bertha von Frontenhausen of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Apparently member of the ancient Frankish noble family, the Luitpoldings.

 

1194-1207 Reigning Abbess Mathilde III de Bohême of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
Princess of Bohemia.

 

1196-1223 Countess Abbess Mechthild I zu Wohldenberg of Gandersheim (Germany)

Pope Innocence III. placed the chapter under Papal protection in 1206 and finishes the century old dispute with the Bishop of Hildesheim.


 

1197-1218 Reigning Abbess Heilka IV von Rotheneck of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)
Her surname might also have been von Rothenegg

 

1203-24 Princess-Abbess Sophia von Brehna of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Daughter of Margrave Friedrich and Hedwig and lived (1182-1226).


 

1203 Reigning Abbess Agnès II of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

The last known predecessor was Agnès I who reigned about 100 years earlier.


 

1205-30 Reigning Abbess-General Sancha García of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

The "Monastieum Cisterciense" records the stern inhibition that Innocent III, in 1220, placed upon Cistercian Abbesses of Burgos and Palencia in Spain, "who blessed their religious, heard the confession of their sins, and when reading the Gospel, presumed publicly to preach."

Abbess of Gernrode

1205-07 Countess-Abbess Richenza von Büren of Gernrode (Germany)

Also known as Rikinza. Around 1200 the community drew up a manuscript listing all its rights of ownership, dependencies, and holdings. According to this manuscript 24 entire villages, 21 churches, and nearly 400 hides of land belonged to the communities of Gernrode and Frose. Although the manuscript is a forgery (it purports to be a document issued by Margrave Gero in 964), it was accepted and strengthened by Pope Innocent III and was accepted as the truth thereafter.


Adelheid II von Büren, Äbtissin von Gernrode

1207-21 Countess-Abbess Adelheid II von Büren of Gernrode and Frose (Germany)

At the height of their wealth, the communities of Frose and Gernrode held approximately 11.000 hectares, comprising woodland, vineyards, fishponds, and grazing. A dispute with the stewards of the chapter was settled by the Bishop Freiderich von Halberstadt in 1220. She (d. 1221)


 

1207-08 Reigning Abbess Marie I de Champagne (de Bourgogne) of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
The prosperity of the abbey continued under her reign, but by the end of the twelfth century, owing to the state of the country and the English wars, the nuns were reduced to gaining their livelihood by manual work. The situation was aggravated by internal dissensions, which lasted a hundred years.

 

1208-09 Reigning Abbess Ala/Alix de Bourbon of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
The chapter was founded in 1101, and was unique in the way that the community was placed directly under the protection of the Pope and the King of France.

 

1209-18 Reigning Abbess Alix de Champagne of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
Apparently daughter of Count Henri I de Champagne et de Brie and Marie of France, the daughter of King Louis VII of France.

 

Circa 1211-31 Reigning Abbess ... de Lorraine of Remiremont (France)

The daughter of Duke Friederich von Bitsch and Lorraine and Ludmilla of Poland (d. 1242), her name has been lost.


 

1212-43 Reigning Abbess Hersende of Jouarre (France)

Also known as Hermensende or Hermengade. She engaged in an offensive against the Bishop of Meaux and 1225 the Abbey was granted episcopal exemption for 450 years and thus came under the immediate jurisdiction of the Pope.


 

1216-? Reigning Abbess Gertrud I of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

The Abbey was founded ca 833 and in 1219 the reichsunmittelbaren convent came under direct Papal protection.


 

1216-18  Reigning Abbess Tutta of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Her background is not known.


 

1217-34 Reigning Abbess Gertrud II zur Lippe of Herford (Germany)

She was daughter of count Bernhard II zur Lippe, who resigned in 1196 to become Abbot and then Bishop of Semgallen. Her mother was Heilwig von Are-Hostaden, and resigned from her post in 1234. Her next known successor, Ida, became abbess in 1238. (d. ca 1245).


 

1218-24 Reigning Abbess Heilika V von Wittelsbach of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Member of the Ducal family of Bavaria. Another version of her name is Heylca.


 

1218-28 Reigning Abbess Berthe of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
A Prior under the control of the Abbess commanded the monks in the double-convent.

 

1221-44 Countess-Abbess Sophia zu Anhalt of Gernrode (Germany)

She was daughter of Bernhard, Count of Anhalt (1170-1212) and Duke of
Sachsen (1180-1212) and Jutta von Poland, the daughter of Duke Mieszko III of Gnesen.


 

1223-52 Countess Abbess Berta II of Gandersheim (Germany)

Even though Duke Otto von Braunschweig had promised not to build a castle that would damage the interests of the chapter, he build a "house" in 1232 which led to much dispute with the Abbesses in the years to come. She was member of a noble family from Hessen.


 

1224-30 Princess-Abbess Bertradis I von Krosigk of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Daughter of Count Dedo II von Krosigk and Adelheid.


 

1224-29  Reigning Abbess Frideruna von Falkenstein of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Also known as Fritaun. The first of Lord of Falkenstein was mentioned in 1120. The family died out in 1334 and the castle of Falkenstein in Harz was inherited by the Lords of Asseburg.


 

1228-1254 Princess-Abbess Judith von Hagenbuch of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

In 1234 she became the first abbess of the territory to receive the rank of Princess of the Empire. (Fürstäbtissin, Princess d'Empire)


 

1228-44 Reigning Abbess Adèle de Bretagne of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
Also known as Alix, she was apparently a member of the Ducal family of Bretagne.

 

1228-61 Reigning Abbess Adelïde de Sotteghem of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Succeeded  by Sara de Mernis.


 

1229-39 Reigning Abbess Mathilde III von Henffenfeld of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Also known as Mechtild.


 

1231-38 Reigning Abbess-General María Pérez de Guzmán of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Member of the family of Lords and later Counts and Dukes of Medina Sidonia.

 

1230-31 Princess-Abbess Kunigunde von Kranichfeld und Kirchberg of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Daughter of Count Voldrad of Kranichfeld.


 

1231-33 Princess-Abbess Osterlindis von Falkenstein of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Also known as Osterlinde, she was daughter of Otto I von Falkenbenstein.


Unnamed Abbess

1231-39 Dame Abbesse Agatha de Lorraine of Remiremont (France)

Also known as Agatha von Bitsch, she succeeded her sister. She was also Abbess of L'Entanche and Bouxières, from before 1236.


 

1233-70 Princess-Abbess Gertrud von Ampfurth of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Daughter of Noble Werner von Ampfurth (or Amfurt)


 

Around 1233 Abbess Nullius Audisia of the Monestary of Brindisi (Italy)

She held semi-episcopal powers. The privileges of the Chapter was confirmed by papal bulls 1099, 1119, 1124, 1159, 1191 and 1233.


 

1237-41 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth II of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

Her full title was Des heiligen römishen Reichs Fürstin und Äbtissin in Essen, Frau zu Breisig, Huckard und Rellinghausen. 


 

1237 Reigning Abbess Ida of Rottenmünster (Germany)

Emperor Friedrich II Hohenstaufen took the Abbey under his immediate protection, and it had become an Imperial Immediacy(Reichstift). Ida was the second Abbess.


1238-64 Reigning Abbess Ida of Herford (Germany)

1256 she signed a treaty of Condominate with the City of Herford (Co-Rule) something totally unique in the realm. The Abbey of the Realm placed itself under the protection of the Citizen of the City, who in exchange got important rights. This lead to a cooperation between Abbey and City for centuries and kept both free from other worldly lords.


 

Before 1239-69 Princess-Abbess Chunigunde II of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

During her reign, the ornate of the chapter was created.


 

1239-53 Reigning Abbess-General Inés Laynez of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

As Prioress she had been Acting as Head of the Community 1230-31 until Maria Pérez de Guzmán was elected as successor of Sancha Garcia.

 

1239-42 Reigning Abbess Tutta III von Dalmässing of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

The Chapter had been placed directly under the king as the other states in Germany and was granted royal protection and, immunity.


 

1242-43 Reigning Abbess Irmgard I von Scheyern of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

The counts of Scheyern were members of the Wittelsbach-family.


1242-79 Dame Abbesse Agnès II de Salm of Remiremont (France)


After her death, there was 2 candidates for her succession: Marguerite de Bayon and Agnès de Glère. She was daughter of Count Heinrich III. of Lothringen and Judith of Lothringen


 

1243-49 Reigning Abbess Hildegard von Kirchberg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Member of a Bavarian noble family.


 

Circa 1243-92 Princess-Abbess Bertha II von Arnsberg of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

Her period in office was marked by the ongoing fights for the independence of the territory, and the pope confirmed the exemption time after time,


 

1244-65 Reigning Abbess Mabile de la Ferté of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
She was widow of Mathieu de Montmorency, Signeur de Laye, and she was Dame de Mondeville.

 

1245-48 Countess-Abbess Irmengarde I of Gernrode (Germany)

Her background is not known.


Seal of Berta II von Arnsberg, Fürstäbtissin zu Essen 

1246-92 Princess-Abbess Berta I von Arnberg of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

Had managed to have the stewardship downgraded from a "seignorial stewardhip" to a "protective stewardship" (Herrenvogtei or Schirmvogtei) which meant that the steward no longer was allowed to collect taxes or revenues from the inhabitants of the territory of Essen. And the military protection was in the hands of the civil servants of the chapter. The Archbishop of Köln, Siegfried von Westerburg, had tried to have her removed from office on charge of a number of serious charges. She did not attend the case and the bishop declared her for deposed and with the help of the Pröbstin, Mechtild von Rennenberg, he declared his niece, Irmgard von Wittgenstein to be Abbess of Essen, after he had already installed her as abbess of Herford. But Berta had already secured the confirmation by the pope in 1245 that the chapter was placed directly under his protection, and the Bishop of Köln therefore did not have any say in the matters of the chapter of Essen. In 1290 she was given full authority (Landeshohheit) over the city of Essen by Emperor Rudolf I, who helped her restore the authority of the chapter against the Archbishop of Köln. Count Eberhard von Mark was appointed Marshall of the Abbey, but had to give up the hereditary status of the office and the juridical powers. 1291 she granted a charter of freedom for the Jews of the city, and successive Princesses confirmed this freedom until the secularisation in 1802.


Oda von Gernrode

1248-49/60 Countess-Abbess Oda von Meinersen of Gernrode and Frose (Germany)

Since the eleventh century the property of Gernrode was divided between the abbess, the canonesses, and the other inhabitants of the chapter. The canonesses administered only a small portion of their land holdings directly. They leased the lands to dependent farmers in return for rent payments and services. The majority of the community's land was loaned in fief to vassals and members of ministerial families.


 

1249-57 Reigning Abbess Kunigunde III von Stain of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Member of the Seigniorial family von Stain zu Rechtenstein by the River Donau in Württemberg.


 

1249 Reigning Abbess Margaretha of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

As Abbess she also held the overlordship and lower jurisdiction in the villages of Wald, Buffenhofen, Burrau, Dietershofen, Gaisweiler, Hippetsweiler, Kappel, Litzelbach, Otterswang, Reischach, Riedetsweiler, Ringgenbach, Rothenlachen, Steckeln, Walbertsweiler und Weihwang by the Bodenzee Lake and outside it's acctual territories of Igelswies, Ruhestetten und Tautenbronn.


 

1253-1305 Countess Abbess Margarete I von Plesse of Gandersheim (Germany)

The protection by a marshal of the chapter (Schutzvogtei) ended in 1259, and the Imperial Immediacy thereby reached the height of its power. Margarete I was born as "Edle Frau" or Noble Lady.


 

1253-60 Reigning Abbess-General Elvira Fernández of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

By the favour of the king, she was invested with almost royal prerogatives, and exercised an unlimited secular authority over more than 60 lordships and villages.


 

1255 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth I of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

The Ecclesiastical Territory included the City of Zürich and many possessions in Uri and Schwyz.


 

1255-1269 Princess-Abbess Machtild III von Wunnenberg of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

Member of a noble family, which held lordships in both Switzerland and Germany.


 

1257-59 Reigning Abbess Kühnheit Pinzinger of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

The chapter had been placed directly under the king as the other states in Germany in 1002 and was granted royal protection and, immunity.


 

1257-64 Reigning Abbess Bertha de Augea of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

The chapter was a major landowner and also held lower jurisdiction in a number of surrounding villages.


 

1259-? Reigning Abbess Jutta of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

It is not known how long time she reigned, but Gertrud II took over as head of the state in 1265.


 

1259-61 and 1271-73 Reigning Abbess Wilburg von Lobsingen of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Possibly Acting Head of the State in 1257. Her family, the nobles von Lobsingen, had been in charge of the castle of Lobsingen for four generations from 1133 until 1277.


 

1260-75 Countess-Abbess Gertrudis I von Anhalt of Gernrode (Germany)

Also known as Gertrud, she was daughter of Count Heinrich I of Anhalt and Irmgard von Thüringen.


 

1260-62 Reigning Abbess-General Eva of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

As Abbess she exercised supreme temporal and judicial authority over an extended territory encompasing numberous villages and lordships and was the most important feudal ruler in the Kingdom of Castile after the King.

 

1261-62  Reigning Abbess Tutta IV von Putingen of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

At the time Regensburg was the major city of Germany and the seat of the Diet of the Holy Roman Empire.


 

1261-82 Reigning Abbess Sara de Mernis of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

The abbey came under the sovereignty of France as part of "French Flanders".


 

1262-73  Reigning Abbess Gertrud II von Stein of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Member of a Bavarian Freiherrliche (free lord) family.


 

1262-66 Reigning Abbess-General Urraca Alfonso of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

The abbess had the privilege to confirm Abbesses, to impose censures, and to convoke synods.

 

1262-.. Princess-Abbess Mathilde IV von Hardenberg of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

She was succeeded by Agata, or Hemelburg von Hardenberg, but it is not known when.


 

1265-?  Reigning Abbess Gertrud II of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Her background is not known.


 

1265-76 Reigning Abbess Jeanne de Dreux of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
She was the youngest and 12th child of Count Robert II de Dreux et de Braine and Yolande de Coucy, and lived (1199-1276).

 

1266-71 Reigning Abbess-General Urraca Martinez of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

The Abbess of the Royal Abbey was one of the few abbesses in the history of the Catholic church to hold quasi-episcopal powers.                        

 

1266-70 Abbess Nullius Dameta Donna Paleologina of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

First abbess of the chapter that have been given to the congregation of Cistercian Nuns, that had fled from Greece. The abbey had originally been founded in 889 as monk cloister placed under direct papal protection in 1110. Her position as Abbess Nullius - or "Badesse Mitrate" was confirmed 1267 by Pope Clemente IV. Another version of her surname is Paleologo, and she might have been a member of the Byzantine Imperial Family.


 

1266 Reigning Abbess Hadwig of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Possibly the same as Hedwig, who is mentioned as ruler 1273/74.


 

1267-circa 77 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth I de Brugelette of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

Apparently the position of Princess-Abbess was vacant 1265-67.


 

1270-1308 Princess-Abbess Bertradis II of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Her background is unknown, but she was probably member of a noble family of Harzen, perhaps daughter of the Count of Barby. In 1300 she sold the Neustadt outside Quedlinburg for 1.000 Mark Stendale Silver (stendalischen Silber) to the Counts of Regenstein because she lacked money. (d. 1308).


Unnamed Abbess

1270-98 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth II von Wedtzikon of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

The Fürstäbtissin was the leading personality of her time, not only in the political but also in the cultural life of the City of Zürich. She introduced the Gothic building style. More than 140 documents carries her name and seal, with the introduction: „Allen dien die disen brief ansehent, künden wir, Elsebetha von gottes genaden Ebetissinne zu Zürich es Munsters vnd ouch der Samenunk…“ During her reign the Benediktine Abbey was at the heights of its powers and she gave right to print coins, she leased the customs office and was involved in the appointment of mayors. She also played an important role in the external politics of the city and 1273 she received King Rudolf von Habsburg in Zürich „with princely glitter“. She was daughter of Lord Ulrich von Wetzikon.


 

1270-72 Reigning Abbess Ita Truchsessin von Waldburg zu Rohrdorf of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Possible Great-aunt of Agathe Truchsessin von Meßkirch.


Before 1271-83  Princess-Abbess Herburgis von Ehrenfels of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

The Princess-Abbess was the superior head of the chapter, but the abbot or provost administered the estates of the clerical ladies, arranged the statues and appointed the prioress.


 

1271-73 Reigning Abbess-General Urraca Diez of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Secular ruler of more then 60 lorships, towns and villages in Castilla and Léon.
??

 

1271-96 Abbess Nullius Isabella I of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

Confirmed as "Abbassa Nullius di San Benedetto in Conversano" by Pope Gregorio X in 1273, who also confirmed the direct papal protection. She was in dispute with Grand-Vicar Stefano of Conversano.


 

1272-?  Reigning Abbess Wilburgis von Leuchtenberg of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Member of the family of Landgraves of Leuchtenberg within Bavaria. It is not known how long she was in office but Ryssa I von Leuhtenberg reigned from 1286.


 

1273-76 Reigning Abbess Elisabeth I von Stauf of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

In another list of Abbesses of Niedermünster she is named Stauffin von Stauffenburg.


 

1273-87 Reigning Abbess-General María Gutiérrez II of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

The Abbess of the Chapter also held the position of Abbess General of the Order for the Kingdom of Leon and Castile since 1189.

 

1273/74 Reigning Abbess Hedwig of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Could be the same as Hadwig.


 

1275 Reigning Abbess Ute of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

The chapter held the overlordship of 15 villages within it's territory and 3 outlying villages.


 

1275-circa 1295/98 Abbess Regnant Mathilde von Braunschweig- Lüneburg of Gernrode (Germany)

The Princess had been Regent of Anhalt-Aschersleben 1266-70. Before his death her husband, Heinrich II the Fat von Anhalt-Aschersleben, had named her regent in the event of his death. In the beginning she used the name "Mechtild, comities Saccharine et princes in Anhalt" in the documents, the title of "princes" soon went to her sons, Otto I and Heinrich III, and thereafter she did not issue decrees, she only accepted the decisions of her sons. In 1275 she became Abbess of Gernrode and Frose, and continued as a mild and just ruler. She resigned as Sovereign of the Ecclesiastical Territory, and lived (ca.1230-ca.1297/98).


 

1276-85 Reigning Abbess Hedwig Kropflin of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Head of the Benedictine convent in Bavaria, which was closely associated with Obermünster.


 

1276-84 Reigning Abbess Isabeau I Davoir of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
Member of a French noble family.

 

1277-? Princess-Abbess Aleide I van Beerbeke of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

It is not known how long her reign lasted, but Elisabeth II van Burget reigned until 1287.


 

1278-88 Reigning Abbess Mathilde II von Waldeck of Herford (Germany)

Also known as Mechtild. Irmgard was elected as abbess in 1290.


 

1278-79 Reigning Abbess Hedwig von Gutenstein of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Probably member of the Staufian noble family and her brothers,  Konrad and Werner  were mentioned as witnesses to the foundation of the Chapter of Wald in 1212.


 

1282-1305 Reigning Abbess Marguerite de Wormhoudt of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Her family originated in Normandy.


1283-98 Princess-Abbess Euphemia of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

The Chapter enjoyed immunity and was not under the authority of the Prince-Bishop of Salzburg.


 

Before 1283 Reigning Abbess Mathilde von Hohenberg of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Daughter of Burchard III von Hohenberg and Mechtild zu Pfalz-Thübingen and sister of Anna (or Gertrud) von Hohenberg, the wife of Rudolf von Habsburg.


 

1284-1304 Reigning Abbess Marguerite I de Pocey of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)
Member of a French noble family.

 

1285-1300 Reigning Abbess Kunigunde IV Hainkhover  of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Another version of her surname was Hainkoverin.


 

1286-92  Reigning Abbess Ryssa I von Leuchtenberg of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

The Abbey was founded ca 833 and in 1219 the reichsunmittelbare Chapter came under direct Papal protection.


 

Until 1287 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth van Burget of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

The abbess of Nivelles was Princess of the Holy Roman Empire and Political Leader of the City of Nivelles.


 

1287-93 Princess-Abbess Isabelle I of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

Elected as successor of Elisabeth van Burget.


 

1287-95 Reigning Abbess-General Berenguela López of the Royal Monastery of Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Daughter of Lope López, II señor de la Guardia and Berenguela González de Girón

 

Around 1287 Dame Abbesse Anne I de Glère of Remiremont (France)

Also Abbess of Säckingen and charged with the administration of Masevaux when she was imposed as Abbess by Emperor Rudolf von Habsburg. Later excommunicated for ursurping the abbasiate.


 

Around 1290 Princesse-Abbesse Laure-Félicité de Dombasle of Remiremont, Dame of Saint Pierre and Metz  (France)

Raised to the rang of Princesse of the Empire (princesse d'Empire) in 1295, the same year a peace-treaty was concluded with the Duke of Lorraine, Ferry III, after years of dispute over control of the territory. She was member of a line of the countly family of Salm.


 

1290 Reigning Abbess Adelheid von Grieningen of Rottenmünster (Germany)

Member of a German noble family. 


 

1290-1323 Reigning Abbess Irmgard von Wittgenstein of Herford (Germany)

Her uncle, Siegfried von Westerburg, Archbishop of Köln, tried to remove Berta von Arnsberg as Princess-Abbess of Essen and impose her as the new head of the chapter, but he did not succeed. When Berta died in 1292, she was candidate for the position again and remained Contra-Abbess in opposition to Beatrix II von Holte until 1304.


 

1290 Reigning Abbess Anna von Veringen of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Could be identical with the Abbess of the same name, that is mentioned 1311-20.


 

1292-1327 Princess-Abbess Beatrix II von Holte of Essen (Germany)

Pröbstin of Vreden from 1273. After the death of Berta von Arnsberg, the Sub-Stewart, the Count von der Mark, quickly had himself appointed steward of the chapter by the Dechaness and had Beatrix elected as Abbess to make sure Archbishop of Köln would not impose his niece, Irmgard von Wittgenstein, Abbess of Herford as Princess-Abbess so that she could afterwards appoint him to position of steward of the chapter for the diocese, which had become vacant by the death of Rudolf von Habsburg half a year earlier. Beatrix was unanimously by the 26 canonesses and 16 canons present. Both the Pröbstin Mechthild von Renneberg and  Irmgard von Wittgenstein were absent. She was member of a family of lower nobility from who had moved away from Osnabrück because of disputes with the Bishop of Münster. Her brother, Wig bold von Hole, was elected Archbishop of Köln in 1297 and the following year Armguard von Wittgenstein officially resigned any claims to the chapter, but Beatniks was not officially confirmed in office by the Bishop of Minden as representative of the Pope and soon after by the king. She managed to improve the economic situation of the chapter and thereby secured its existence as an imperial immediate territory. She lived (circa 1250-1327).


 

1293-1340 Princess-Abbess Iolande de Steyne of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

The Abbess of Nivelles was Princess of the Holy Roman Empire and Political Leader of the City of Nivelles.


 

Circa 1293-circa 1303 Princess-Abbess Catherine I de Vaudemont of Remiremont (France)

She was head of the free worldly (secular) chapter for noble ladies.


 

1295-1326 Reigning Abbess-General Urraca Alfonso II of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

By the initiative of Infanta Blanca, Lady of Las Huelgas, Fernando IV granted her the right to name city scribes and authroze their acts, a privillege confirmed by Alfonso XI in 1317.

 

1296-1303 Reigning Abbess Elisabeth von Hohenfels of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

If she was indeed a member of the Hohenfels-family, her father was Grosswin von Hohenfels, who worked for Rudolf von Habsburg.


 

1296-1314 Abbess Nullius Adelina of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

Confirmed by Pope Bonifacio VIII in 1297. Conceded a piece of land to the lord of Polignano and had the privileges of the chapter confirmed several times.


1298-1322 Princess-Abbess Herradis von Praitenfurt of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

The Reichsabtei was home of ladies of high nobility of the Holy Roman Empire.


 

1298-1305 Countess-Abbess Irmengarde II von Ummendorf of Gernrode (Germany)

The canonesses of the chapter were known to enjoy extensive freedoms. They were often able to purchase extensive clothes and often their own houses. If it suited their parents' means, they were often married off.


 

1298-1308 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth III von Spiegelberg of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

Member of an old noble family, in 1281 Count Moritz came in possession of some land in the valley between the Mountains of Ith, Osterwald and Nesselberg in Weserbergland. The County included 5 villages and stayed in the family until 1557 when it was inherited by the House Lippe.


 

1298-1303 Reigning Abbess Agnès III de Cérilly of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

After both Agnès de Juilly and Marguerite de Sergines were elected Abbesses in 1443 a lenghtly dispute and court cases followed.


 

1299-? Reigning Abbess Ryssa II von Dornberg of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Dornberg is a village in the former County of Ravensberg in Preussen (Prussia).


 

1300-04 Reigning Abbess Adelheid II von Treidenberg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

1002 the Reichsstift Niedermünster in Regensburg was placed directly under the king as the other states in Germany, and it was granted royal protection and, immunity.


 

1303-10 Reigning Abbess Agnès IV de Gloise of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

As Abbess she had great authority in the region, organising fairs and markets, dispensing justice, appointing priests, having the right to arbitrate in distribution of the lands.


 

1304-14 Reigning Abbess Irmgard II von Köfering of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Köferingen is a village situated close to Regensburg.


 

1305-after 1311 Countess-Abbess Hedwig IV von Gernrode (Germany)

Her background is not known.


 

1305-16 Countess Abbess Mechthild II zu Wohldenberg of Gandersheim (Germany)

Member of a German countly family.


 

1305-17 Reigning Abbess Mathilde II d'Auchy of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Also known as Mahaut.


 

1306-16 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth II von Bussnang of Säckingen (Germany)

King Albrecht named her Princess of the Empire on 4 April 1307. She defended her rights against the citizen of Laufenburg in the Court of the City, and renewed the rights of the City of Bad Säckingen in 1316. She was member of a fmaily of Lords from Thurgau in Switzerland tha played an important role in the diocese of Konstantz.


1306-26 Princesse-Abbesse Clémence d'Oiselay of Remiremont  (France)

She held the office of Doyenne and was Second-in-Command 1288-92 before becoming Secrète; the canonnis in charge of the lighting of alter lights etc - the third highest-ranking officer in the chapter. And she received papal protection sometime during her term in office. She was daughter of Jean d'Oyselet, Seigneur de Flagey, the issue of an illegitimate branch of the Counts of Bourgogne. Other versions of her surname found in the original sources are d'Oyselet, Oiselet or Oizelay.


Hedwig IV von Gernrode

1307-17 Countess-Abbess Hedwig IV von Gernrode and Frose (Germany)

In the only known document from her reign is from 1311, where she sells one of the estates of the chapter in order to release the "church treasure" that had been handed in as security for lones.


 

1307-11 Reigning Abbess Mechtild von Hasenstein of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Resigned from the post. Owned 2 estates together with her daughters Anna and Ita, who was canonisses in the chapter.


 

1308-47 Princess-Abbess Jutta von Kranichfeld of Quedlinburg (Germany)

1320 she asked Duke Rudolf von Sachsen to renew the fief-agreement thereby confirming the status of her independent territory. 1326 the cities of Halberstadt, Aschersleben and Quedlinburg made an agreement of mutual defence. During the fights between count Albrecht II. von Regenstein  and the Bishop of Halberstadt, the count attacked Quedlinburg and the Neustadt in 1336, but his castle - the Gersdorfer Burg - was occupied and he imprisoned. After two years a peace-agreement was reached in which the Counts of Regenstein accepted the "protection" of the city by the Bishops of Quedlinburg. Jutta was daughter of Count Volrad VIII von Kranichfeld and Countess Mechtild von Blankenburg, and lived (circa 1285-1347).


 

1308-40 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth IV von Matzinger of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

The Ecclesiastical Territory included the City of Zürich and many possessions in Uri and Schwyz.


 

1310-37 Princess-Abbess Margaretha I van Pietersheim of Thorn, Lady of Thorn, Ittervoort, Grathem, Baexem, Stramproy, Ell, Haler and Molenbeersel  (The Netherlands)

In 1310 Abbess Margaretha travelled to the pope in Avignon and obtained the position of sovereign of the Ecclesiastical Territory of Thorn.


 

1310-13 Reigning Abbess Elisabeth von Goritz of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

She was the first abbess of the Chapter of Königsfelden and its surroundings. It acquired many possessions in Aargau, Swabia and Alsace.


 

1310-45 Reigning Abbess Hélissent I de Noyers of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

But the Hundred Years War devastated the whole of Brie and the nuns were obliged to flee. The monastery and the Tower were burnt down and the church fell partly into ruins.


 

1311-16 Countess-Abbess Hedwiga III of Gernrode (Germany)

From the thirteenth century on, the community suffered from debts, poor management by its abbesses, divisions within the chapter, the poor economic conditions of the later Middle Ages, and the aggressive territorial politics of the archbishop of Magdeburg and the bishops of Halberstadt. The community gradually lost both goods and tenants.


 

1311-39 Reigning Abbess  Anna von Veringen of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Probably daughter of Count Heinrich von Veringen-Hettingen and perhaps a Countess von Sutz.


 

Around 1313 Reigning Abbess Hedwiga von Kuntzlau of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

Thought the Abbesses ruled over a considerable territory, they did apparently not become Princesses of the Empire unlike many of the other Reigning Abbesses.


 

1314-33 Reigning Abbess Euphemia von Winzer of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

The chapter for noble ladies was an important convent closely associated with Obermünster also situated in Regensburg, the seat of the Imperial Diet.


 

Before 1315-24 Countess-Abbess Gertrudis II von Bovenden of Gernrode (Germany)

Since 1021 the Abbess had the rank of a sovereign Countess.


 

1317-31 Countess Abbess Sophia II von Büren of Gandersheim (Germany)

The citizen of the city of Gandersheim bought their "eternal freedom" for 100 Silver Mark from the chapter in 1329, which enabled her to pay her depths by the Pope.


 

1317-32 Reigning Abbess Johanne de Rassenghem of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Held semi-bishopal authority and secular jurisdiction of her territory.


 

1318-28 Princess-Abbess Adelheid von Ühlingen of Säckingen (Germany)

Held the office of Kellerin (In charge of the wineproduction) 1316-18. Member of a noble family from Schaffenhausen in Switzerland.


 

1318-24 Reigning-Abbess Guta von Bachenstein of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

Member of a German noble family, which were lords of various small territories.


 

1322-38/39 Princess-Abbess Bertha von Pux of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

The Abbess of the Chapter had been a Prelate of the Realm in 1242 and member of the bank of the Swabian Prelates of the Realm in the Imperial Diet.


 

1322-23 Reigning Abbess Adellint of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

It is not known if she is identical with the in 1313 mentioned nun, Adelling Zimlich or with Ädellint, who is mentioned in 1355.


 

1323-29 Reigning Abbess Mechtild von Digisheim of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Member of a noble family, which started out as civil servants at one of the Duchal courts of Germany (Ministerialadel).


 

1324-60 Reigning Abbess Ludgard II von Bicken of Herford (Germany)

She was also known as Luitgard von Bickenem


 

1324/26-47 Princesse-Abbesse Jeanne I de Vaudemont of Remiremont (France)

Daughter of Henri II de Vaudemont, Count de Vaudémont et d'Ariano and Helissende de Vergy, Dame du Fay, and lived (circa 1267-1347).


 

1325-33 Countess-Abbess Jutta von Oesede of Gernrode (Germany)

In 1325 a schoolmistress (scholastica) is mentioned. Jutta was member of a high-ranking noble family, perhaps also known as Osede.


 

Until 1325 Princess-Abbess Bertha Walterin of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

1315 Emperor Ludwig the Bavarian appointed the Abbess as Princess of the Realm, and it thereby became the second Reichsfreie (Imperial Immediacy) and second richest Ladies Chapter in the City next to Niedermünster. The dates of the reigns of her successors are not known, but she was followed by Adelheid von Aerenbach, Katharina I von Murach and Agnes I von Wunebach, who reigned until 1374. The Abbess was both member of the Imperial Diet and Bavarian Assembly (Landtag).


 

1326-36 Reigning  Abbess-General Maria González de Agüeroof the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

She commissioned the copying of the Codex Las Huelgas a music manuscript or codex from c. 1300 which originated in and has remained in the Cistercian convent of Santa María La Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos, in northwestern Spain, then Castile. It was rediscovered in 1904 by two Benedictine monks. The manuscript is written on parchment, with the staves written in red ink with Franconian notation. The bulk of material is written in one hand, however as many as 12 people contributed to it, including corrections and later additions. The manuscript contains 45 monophonic pieces (20 sequences, 5 conductus, 10 Benedicamus tropes) and 141 polyphonic compositions, 1 of which doesn't have music. Most of the music dates from the late 13th century, with some music from the first half of the 13th century (Notre dame repertory), and a few later additions from the first quarter of the 14th century.

 

1326-41 Abbess Nullius Maria d'Angiò of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

Marie d'Anjou was daughter of Philippe II de Taranto, Prince of Corfu, Morea, Albania, Duke of Athens and Valaccia, Vicar of the Kingdom of Sicilia and Despot of Romania, and his first wife, Thamar Komnene Dukaina, Despota of Epirus (1277-1311). After their divorce in 1309 he married Catherine II de Valois, titular Empress of Constantinople, Princess of Achaia.


 

1327-37 Princess-Abbess Kunigunde von Berg of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

Prior to her election as sovereign of the territory, she was presented as a very well educated and cultured woman. During her reign, she engaged in quarrels with the neighbouring Duke of Jülich. She was daughter of Heinrich von Berg, Herr zu Windeck and Agnes von der Mark and related to Emperor Karl IV.


 

1328-30 Princess-Abbess Jonatha von Donmartin of Säckingen (Germany)

Since she had not been elected with a clear majority, she was unable to inforce her authority over the chapter and Bishpop Rudolf von Montfort of Konstantz persuaded her to resign and withdrew the rigtht of free election from the chapter and appointed Agnes von Brandis as er successor.


 

1328 Reigning Abbess Katharina von Triberg of Rottenmünster (Germany)

Her family were lords of Triberg, but the family had died out in the male line in 1325 with the death of Burkard III, who had succeeded his uncle in 1311. He is buried in the choir of the Church of the Chapter. The Lordship of Triberg was awarded to the Lords of Hohenberg.


 

1329-53 Regining Abbess Anna I von Winberg of Buchau (Germany)

In 1347 she Emperor Ludwig the Bavarian addressed her as "My Dear Princess" in a letter, but it was not until about 100 years that the position of Princess of the Realm was confirmed for the Abbess of the Chapter. She lived (1303-53).


 

1329 Reigning Abbess Benigna von Bachenstein of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

The second of her family to rule the territory. Member of a family of knights and Lords of Barchenstein, Kupfezell and von Goggenback.


 

Around 1330 Reigning Abbess Agnes von Habsburg of Königsfelden, Lady of Bözberg, Eigenamt and the City of Brugg (Switzerland)

She was daughter of King Albrecht of Habsburg and Elisabeth von Görtz-Tirol and married to Andreas III of Hungary (d. 1301). She entered the Chapter in 1317 without taking the wow of a nun, and continued her political activities in favour of the Habsburgs. As advisor of Duke Albrecht of Austria and Representative of the Habsburg interests in the "Front-Austrian" lands, she acted as intermediary in the conflicts between the Habsburgs and the States of Switzerland etc. on various occasions throughout the years. She lived (128½-1364).


 

1330-49 Princess-Abbess Agnes I von Brandis of Säckingen (Germany)

Appointed by Bishop Rudolf of Konstantz as the lchapter had lost the right of free election because of misuse of selcular powers. After the roman church burned down in 1343, she initiated new Gothic Church, and the same year Queen Agnes of Hungary acted as mediator in disputes between the chapter and the Town of Säckingen. During her reign a number of churches and parishes were incorporated in the chapter for financial reasons. She was the sister of Bishop Heinrich of Konstantz (1357-83) and Abbot Eberhard of Reichenau (1343-79), and daughter of Freiherr Mangold I von Brandis and COuntess Margaretha von Nellenborg.

 

1331-57 Countess Abbess Jutta zu Waldeck-Schwalenberg of Gandersheim (Germany)

Also known as Judith, she was daughter of Heinrich II von Waldeck, Count of Schwalenberg and Elisabeth von Kleve.


 

Until after 1332 Abbess Nullius Franceschina della Torre of the Monestary of Aguileia (Italy)

Held temporal and secular authority over the territory and held semi episcopal authority. She was daughter of Florimonte della Torre


 

1332-50 Reigning Abbess Hersende de Guisenes of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Granted the right to name her own confessor and chaplains. Daughter of Baudoin III, count de Guînes.


 

1333-40 Reigning Abbess Elisabeth II von Eschen of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Eschen is a city in the Principality of Liechtenstein.


 

1334-44 Countess-Abbess Gertrudis III von Everstein of Gernrode (Germany)

Also known as Gertrud Eberstein, she was member of an ancient noble family who were in charge of the Castle of Polle.


 

Around 1334 Reigning Abbess Adelheid I of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

The Chapter of Königsfelden was founded in 1310. It acquired many possessions in Argau, Swabia and Alsace.


 

1334 Reigning Abbess Adelheid von Balgheim of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Member of a noble family, which started out as civil servants at one of the Duchal courts of Germany (Ministerialadel).


 

1335 Reigning Abbess Ädellint of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Could be identical with Adellint, mentioned in 1322.


 

1336-51 Reigning Abbess-General María Rodríguez de Rojasof the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

The Abbess ruled over the Lordships of Albillos, Alcucero, Arkanzón, Arroyak, Arrunquera, Arto, Barrio, Bercial, Can de muñó, Candasnos, Cardeñadijo, Castril de Peones, Cilleruelo de Hannoverquez, Congosto, Escobilla, Estepar, Fresno de Rodilla, Galarde, Gatón, Herramel, Herrín, La Llana, Lena, Loranquillo, Madrigalejo del Monte, Marcilla, Montornero, Olmillos, Ontiñena, Palanzuelos de la Sierrra, Piedrahita, Quintana de Loranco, Quintanilla de San García, Sargentes de Loxa, Requena, Revenga, Revilla del Campo, Revillagodos, Rivayaz, Robredo, San Mamés, San Memel, San Quirce de Humada, Saniuste, Santa Cruz de Juarros, Santa Lecina, Santa María de Invierno, Sargentes de Loxa, Tablada, Tardajos, Tinieblas, Torralba, Torre Sandino, Urrez, Valdazo, Villa Gonzalo de Pedernales, Villabáscones, Villaneueva, Villanueva de los Infantes, Villarmejo, Yarto and Zalduendo.

 

1337 Princess-Abbess Isolde von Wied of Thorn, Lady of Thorn, Ittervoort, Grathem, Baexem, Stramproy, Ell, Haler and Molenbeerse (The Netherlands)

In 1244 the first line of counts of Wied, of Altwied died out and a part of the possessions was inherited by the Counts of Grafen von Isenburg-Braunsberg who used the title of Count of Wied from 1388.


 

1337-78 Princess-Abbess Margaretha II van Heinsberg of Thorn (The Netherlands)

She was the first elected sovereign of the ecclesiastical territory. Numerous complaints against her reign reached the Bishop of Liège, and during an inspection he found 12 and not the stipulated 20 Ladies of the Chapter, and on top of it all, three of the inhabitants were young girls. The incomes of the territory were not used for the maintenance of the Abbey, and furthermore Margratha's was absent very often. She was reprimanded but did not take it seriously. She was more Princess than Abbess. She was daughter of Gottfried, Lord of Heinsberg and Blankenburg and Mechtild von Looz.


The so-called Katharina-Daler, the coin that Katharina von der Mark struck as Fürstäbtissin of Essen

1337-60 Princess-Abbess Katharina I von der Mark of Essen (Germany)

Daughter of Engelbert II von der Mark and Matilda von Arenberg. Her sister, Margrethe, was Abbess of Münster.


 

1339 Reigning Abbess Katharina die Schereberin of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Her sister Agatha and her relative Helena von Hinwill were nuns in the chapter.


 

1340-58 Princess-Abbess Fides von Klingen of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

The head of the chapter had been Princess of the Empire since 1234 and acquired many possessions in Uri and Schwyz and in Zurich throughout the years.


 

1340-41 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth III de Gavre of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

Succeeded by Elisabeth IV after about one year in office.


 

Before 1340-49 Princess-Abbess Dimudis of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

Also known as Dietmut.


 

1340-57 Reigning Abbess Petrissa von Weidenberg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

The present church of the chapter was built during her reign. She was apparently member of a Bavarian noble family.


 

1341-51 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth IV de Liedekercke of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

Member of a Belgian noble, family, the Lords of Liedekercke.


 

1342-49 Reigning Abbess Isabeau II de Valois of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

Great granddaughter of king Saint-Louis and daughter of Count Charles II de Valois, third son of King Philippe III France and Titular Empress Catherine I Courtenay of Constantinople (1274–1308) Her oldest half-brother, was king Philippe VI and her older sister was Titular Empress Catherine II de Valois of Constantinople. She lived (1305–1349).


 

1343 Reigning Abbess Adelheid Diepolt of Rottenmünster (Germany)

Member of a noble German family. 


 

1344-48 Countess-Abbess Gertrudis IV von Hessnem of Gernrode (Germany)

Also known as Gertrud.


 

1344-47 Reigning Abbess Agatha Truchsessin von Messkirch of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

As Abbess she also held the overlordship and lower jurisdiction in the villages of Wald, Buffenhofen, Burrau, Dietershofen, Gaisweiler, Hippetsweiler, Kappel, Litzelbach, Otterswang, Reischach, Riedetsweiler, Ringgenbach, Rothenlachen, Steckeln, Walbertsweiler und Weihwang by the Bodenzee Lake and outside it's acctual territories of Igelswies, Ruhestetten und Tautenbronn Also Owned vineries in Wald Aufkirch, Goldbach, Sipplingen und Bermatingen, am Untersee auf der Insel Reichenau and in Allensbach.


 

1345-59 Princess-Abbess Anna II von Arbon of Schänis (Switzerland)

She was the first abbess of the chapter to be mentioned as Princess of the Empire. She was daughter of Heinrich von Arbon and Wilburga. Her brother, Hermann, was Abbot of the Abbey of Pfäfers (1330-60).


 

1345-57 Reigning Abbess Hélissent II de Noyers of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

Succeeded aunt, Hélissent I.


 

1347-53 Princess-Abbess Lutgard von Stolberg of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Daughter of Count Heinrich and Countess Jutta von Hadmersleben. (d. 1353).


 

1348-74 Countess-Abbess Adelheid III von Anhalt of Gernrode (Germany)

Daughter of Prince Heinrich IV von Anhalt-Bernburg and his wife Sofie. A document issued on August 5, 1352 recorded a donation of 30 Marks to the community by two of its canonesses, Agnes de Merwitz (referred to as a deaconess, decana) and Margareta de Warin (referred to as a concanonica) in order to rebuild a deserted home located close to the dormitory, which should serve as the summer dormitory.


 

Around 1348 Princess-Abbess Jeanne-Madeleine de Flachslanden of Andelau (France)

The l'abbaye d'Andlau in Franche-Comté was founded by Empress Richarde, the wife of Karl III the Great, which along the years came to own many lordships in Alsace and France. The Abbess held semi episcopal powers, was named by the Emperor or the King and had the title of Princess-Abbess from 1288.


 

1349-54  Princess-Abbess Katharina von Strettweg of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

Member of a noble family from Kärnten.


 

1349-53 Reigning Abbess Théophanie de Chambon of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

The chapter was founded in 1101, and was unique in the way that the community was placed directly under the Pope and the King of France. The monks in the double-convent were commanded by a Prior under the control of the Abbess.


 

1349-56 Princess-Abbess Anna III von Thulen of Säckingen (Germany)

A decree with her seal from 1355 has survived. Around 1350 the Lords von Schönau was appointed Grand Masters of the Chapter of City of Säckingen. Her family were Lords of Thulen and various other Lordships near Paderborn.


 

1349-65 Abbess Nullius Costanza I da Lecce of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

Both secular and temporal ruler of the territory and among others exercised, through a vicar, semi-episcopal jurisdiction in the abbital fief of Castellana.


 

1350 Princesse-Abbesse Simonetta de Vara of Remiremont  (France)

Another version of her name was Symonate de Varre.


1350-66 Princesse-Abbesse Eléonore de Châlon of Remiremont  (France)

Also known as Aliénor, she was the 10th child of John II de Chalon and Alix de Bourgogne.


 

1350-65 Reigning Abbess Isabelle I de Herzelles of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

The Abbey was in constant dispute with the local bishop over supremacy over the internal affairs.


 

1350 Reigning Abbess Gerhild von Krenkingen of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Apart from a number of estates and villages, the chapter also owned vineries in Wald Aufkirch, Goldbach, Sipplingen und Bermatingen, am Untersee auf der Insel Reichenau and in Allensbach.


 

1351 Reigning Abbess Anna Boller of Rottenmünster (Germany)

Since 1227 the Abbey had been place directly under the Emperor as a Realm of the Holy Roman Empire. 


 

1351-80 Princess-Abbess Mathilde van Leeuwenberg of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

Member of a Dutch noble family.


 

1351-61 Reigning Abbess-General Urraca Fernández de Herrera of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

The abbess held the right to grant letters dismissorial for ordination, and issued licenses authorizing priests, within the limits of her abbatial jurisdiction, to hear confessions, to preach, and to engage in the cure of souls. She was privilege also to confirm Abbesses, to impose censures, and to convoke synods.

 

1353-71 Reigning Abbess Adelheid II von Lupfen of Buchau (Germany)

She was daughter of Count Konrad von Lumpfen and Elisabeth von Liebenstein, and was a nun in Rottenmünster around 1346.


 

1353-73 Reigning Abbess Jeanne de Mangey of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

The chapter was founded in 1101, and was unique in the way that the community was placed directly under the Pope and the King of France. A Prior under the control of the Abbess commanded the monks in the double-convent.

 

1354-62 Princess-Abbess Agnes III von Schrapelau of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Daughter of Edlen (the noble) Buchard von Schrapelau and Luitgard Gans von Wittenberge und Pereberg. Resigned in 1362, died two years later.

 

1355-81 Princess-Abbess Gertrud I von Hanau of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

Member of a noble family from Hessen in Germany.


 

Around 1355 Reigning Abbess Elisabeth von Leiningen of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

She was Lady of possessions in Aargau, Swabia and Alsace, but did apparently not have the dignity of Princess.


 

1356-79 Princess-Abbess Margarethe I von Grünenberg of Säckingen (Germany)

Her election ended in a draw but she was inagurated by the Bishop of Konstantz after the resignation of the other candidate, Anna von Brandis. 1356 she agreed not to sell any possessions of the Chapter without the accept of the other canonisses. The new Gothic church of the city was inaugurated 1360 and she mended the relationship between Glarus and Säckingen in 1373.  She was possibly daughter of Freiherr Johann I von Grünenberg, of the von Binzen branch of the Swiss noble family, and Clementia von Sigau. Her brother, Mark, was Abbot of Einsiede (1364-76).


 

1356-57 Reigning Abbess Judenta von Hohenfels of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Member of the family of Counts of Hohenfels in Bavaria.


 

1357-58 Countess Abbess Ermengard zu Waldeck-Schwalenberg of Gandersheim (Germany)

Also known as Ermengardis, she was first a nun at Mariensee, and later succeeded her sister, Jutta, who ruled in Gandersheim 1331.


 

1357-61 Reigning Abbess Margaretha I Gösslin von Altenburg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Gössl is a town near Salzburg in Austria, not far from Regensburg in Bavaria.


 

1358-98 Princess-Abbess Beatrix von Wohlhusen of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

1373 she approved the second "Sworn letter of Zürich" (Dem Zweiten Geschwornen Brief Zürichs) that limited the powers of the mayor of Zürich after the rein of the Brunschen.


 

1359-1402 Countess Abbess Luitgard III zu Hammerstein of Gandersheim (Germany)

Also known as Lutgard. During her reign the chapter became more and more under the influence of the Dukes of Braunschweig


 

1359-62 Reigning Abbess Elisabeth von Reischach of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Several members of her family were heads of the chapter.


 

1360-70 Princess-Abbess Irmgard I von Broich of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

Her family was first mentioned in 1093 under the nobleman Burkhard von Broich, who renovated the castle, which was built around 880. Her family inhabited the Castle in Mülheim an der Ruhr until the main line died out at the beginning of the 16th century.


 

Around 1360 Princess-Abbess Margaretha of the Royal Chapter St. Georg at the Hradschin in Prague  (Czech Republic)

The Abbess of was named Princess-Abbess in 1348 with the right to crown the Queens of Bohemia.


 

1361 Reigning Abbess Heilwig von Bentheim of Herford (Germany)

Succeeded Ludgard II von Bicken, who died in 1360, but was only in office for a short while.


 

1361-74 Reigning Abbess Elisabeth I von dem Berge of Herford (Germany)

Her surname also seems to have been spelled v.d. Berghe.


 

1361-65 Reigning Abbess Margaretha II Punzinger of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

She was member of a Bavarian noble family who lived in and around Regensburg. Perhaps her surname was Pinzingerin and in that case she was the second of her family to be head of the chapter and territory.    


 

1361-67 Reigning Abbess-General Leonor Rodríguez Barba of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Her full titulature was "noble lady, the superior, prelate, and lawful administratrix in spirituals and temporals of the said royal abbey, and of all the contents, churches, and hermitages of its filiations, of the villages and places under its jurisdiction, seigniory, and vassalage, in virtue of Bulls and Apostolical concessions, with plenary jurisdiction, privative, quasi-episcopal, nullius diacesis."

 

1361-65 Reigning Abbess Jeanne I de Frolois of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

Cousin of the de Noyers' Abbesses. Perhaps her sister Alix was also Abbess.


 

1362-75 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth I von Hackeborn of Quedlinbug (Germany)

Daughter of Edlen Albrecht von H. and Countess Richza von Scharpelau. (d. 1375)


 

1362-1400 Princess-Abbess Agnes von Wildberg of Schänis (Switzerland)

She sold the church treasure of Nuolen, a parish within her juristiction. Reached a compromise with the canonesses about the incomes from Benken. The area was under the overlorship of the Habsburg until 1388 when they lost the majority of the possessions in the Schänis Area. Daughter of Freiherr Heinrich II von Wilden, of the Austrian Lords of Wildberg.


 

1365-91 Reigning Abbess Elisabeth III von Rain of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Rain is a city in Lower Bavaria (Niederbayern). Her surname might also have been von Rhein.


 

1365-87 Reigning Abbess Isabelle II de Ghistelle of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Member of a Belgian seigneurial family.


 

1365-75 Reigning Abbess Jeanne II de Noyers of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

Former Treasurer of the chapter.


 

1365-77 Abbess Nullius Constanza II da Bari of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

Among the many privileges she enjoyed was that of appointing her own vicar-general through whom she governed her abbatial territory; that of selecting and approving confessors for the laity; and that of authorizing clerics to have the cure of souls in the churches under her jurisdiction.


 

Around 1367-74.. Princess-Abbess Elisabeth of the Royal Chapter St. Georg at the Hradschin in Prague  (Czech Republic)

Mentioned in a number of documents together with the Prioress Bohunka and custrix Agnes. In 1370 Agnes is Prioress and in 1374 Dorothea is Prioress


 

 1367-80 Reigning Abbess-General Estefanía de la Fuente Almexía of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Both temporal and secular ruler of vast territories in Castilla and Leon.

 

1368-69 Reigning Abbess Judel of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

In the 14th Century the chapter and its vast possessions was under the Stewardship of Württemberg which also held the higher juridstiction.


1369-1403 Princesse-Abbesse Jeanne II d'Aigremont of Remiremont  (France)

In 1371 an act stated that there were 21 ladies in residence. Her long reign contributed to the development and stability of the chapter. She was member of a noble family from present day's Belgium.


 

1370-1412 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth III von Nassau of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

After her election she created uproar by demanding that the City Council and Citizen should hail her according to an old custom that had been forgotten. In 1372 she had sovereign status of the Chapter as a Realm in the Empire was confirmed and in 1399 she and the city agreed on a settlement on the distribution of powers. Daughter of Johann von Nassau-Hadamar and Elisabeth von Wied. († 1413).


 

1371-1402 Reigning Abbess Anna II von Rüssegg of Buchau (Germany)

Her background is not clear and other versions of her name are Ruseck, Rünsegg or Riinseck. She was elected 25.7.1371 and inaugurated by the bishop of Konstanz at 5.9. 


 

Around 1371 Reigning-Abbess Anna I von Goldenberg of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

Her family had been lords of Mörsburg since 1363 and remained in charge of the castle until 1569 when the Lords von Hallwyl auf Hegi took over. In 1587 Zürich bought the stewardship.


 

1373 Reigning Abbess Adélaïde de Ventadour of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

Member of an influential French noble family.

 

1373-93 Reigning Abbess Eléonore II de Parthenay of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

Held the office of Abbess of St-Jean de Bonneval-lès-Thouars before she came to Fontevraud. She was daughter of Jean I, sire de Parthenay, de St-Christophe et de Semblançay, gouverneur de Saintonge and Marie de Beaujeu (Forez).

Until 1374 Princess-Abbess Agnes I von Munebach of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

The dates of the reigns of her two predecessors are not known, but she was followed by Adelheid von Aerenbach, Katharina I von Murach as head of the Territory of the Realm.


 

1374-1400 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth I von Parsberg of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

1315 Emperor Ludwig the Bavarian appointed the Abbess as Princess of the Realm. Heinrich II granted the Chapter immunity and during the reign of Konrad II, the abbess even received a royal sceptre.


 

1374-1400 Countess-Abbess Adelheid IV von Walde of Gernrode (Germany)

A member of the family of the Lords of Walde.


 

1374-1409 Reigning Abbess Hildgund von Oetgenbach of Herford (Germany)

Head of the large Benedictine convent in northwestern Germany, just north of the Teutoburger Wald. The establishment was granted Princely status in the 12th century, with a seat on the Imperial Diet. Aside from the convent, the town of Herford was an Imperial Free City and a member of the Hanseatic League.


 

1374-83 Reigning Abbess Irmengard von Hohenberg of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

Member of the ancient Countly family of Zollern-Hohenberg in Swabia. 


 

1375-83 Princess-Abbess Anna IV Hundpis of Baindt (Germany) 

She was the first abbess of the chapter to become Princesses of Empire (Fürstäbtissin or Reichsäbtissin) in circa 1376, and thereby sovereign ruler of her Ecclesiastical Territory with a vote in the College of the Prelates of Swabia, whose 22 members (Abbesses and Abbots), which had a joint vote in the Council of the Princes of the Imperial Diet, where the representative of the Prelates sat on the Ecclesiastical Bench. She was member of the noble family of Von Hundpis, who owned castles in Amtzell from the 14. To the 16. Century.


 

1375-83 Reigning Abbess Marguerite I de Noyers of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

Succeeded by sister, Marie.


 

1376-79 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth I von Hackeborn of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Daughter of Edlen Albrecht and Countess Richza von Scharpelau. (d. 1375).


Fürstäbtissin Margarete zu Quedlinburg, née Countess von Scharplau

1377-79 Princess-Abbess Margarete von Schrapelau of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Her sister, Agnes III. reigned (1354-62). Margarete (d. 1379).


 

1379/80-1422 Princess-Abbess Klaranna von Hohenklingen of Säckingen (Germany)

The territory suffered from the freedom fight of the Swiss against Habsburg-Austria and in 1409 the she granted the cities of Säckingen and Laufenburg as fiefs to the Duke of Austria, and thereby they came totally under the influence of the Habsburgs, but 1417 she had King Sigisumd confirm the rights and liberties of the chapter. She was daughter of Freiherr Walter von der Hohenklingen, Lord zu Stein and Countess Kunigunde von Fürstenberg, and her sister Anastasia was Princess-Abbess of the Fraumünster 1412-29.


 

1380-1405 Princess-Abbess Irmgard II von Kirchberg of Quedlinburg (Germany)

1384 Quedlinburg joined the Association of Cities of Low Saxony (Niedersächsischen Städtebund). In 1396 the Council succeeds in aquirering the Stewardship from Count Ulrich von Regenstein. She was daughter of Burgrave Albrecht von Kirchberg and Countess Elisabeth von Orlamünde. She lived (1350-1405).


 

1380-86 Princess-Abbess Aleide II de Ligne of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

The abbess of Nivelles was Princess of the Holy Roman Empire and Political Leader of the City of Nivelles.


 

 1380-96 Reigning Abbess-General Urraca de Herrera of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

As Señora Abedesa she was also Head of the subsidiary parishes of Bercial and Lorilla

 

1381-after 98 Princess-Abbess Katharina von Truthan of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

The chapter was the only in the Austrian lands which enjoyed immunity and the status of an Imperial Immediacy.


 

1383-92 Princess-Abbess Christina II Holbein of Baindt (Germany)   

The Abbey was founded 1227 it's Princess-Abbess had been Sovereign Ruler of the Ecclesiastical Territory for about 10 years, when she took over the reigns.


 

1383-86/99 Reigning Abbess Marie I de Noyers of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)
1386/90-06 Reigning Abbess Abbess of Montivilliers

As Madame Abbesse, she exercised ecclesiastical juridiction in 28 parishes in Normandy, including Saint-Paul and Eauplet by Rouen. She (d. 1396).


 

1383-94 Reigning Abbess Elisabeth von Hornstein of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Member of an ancient noble framily from Sigmaringen near Wald.


 

Until 1386/90 Reigning Abbess Marguerite de la Rivière of of Montivilliers
1386-1400/18
Reigning Abbess of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

During her second tenure, she was known as Marguerite II. She (d. between 1400 and 1418)


 

1386-1417 Princess-Abbess Catherine van Halewyn of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

Her surname was also spelled De Halluwin. 


 

After 1386 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth de Geroldseck of the Royal Abbey of Andlau, Lady of Wagenbourg and Marlenheim etc. (France)

Awarded Jean de Wangen with the fief of the Castle of Wangenburg. 


 

Around 1387 Princess-Abbess Cunka of the Royal Chapter St. Georg at the Hradschin in Prague  (Czech Republic)

The St. Georg auf dem Hradschin zu Prag, Sankt-Georg Kloster or Sv. was the oldest convent in the Bohmian Lands founded in 973 by Prince Boleslav II and his sister, Mlada.


 

1387-95 Reigning Abbess Jeanne de Fiennes of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Held semi-bishopal authority and secular jurisdiction of her territory.


 

1388 Reigning Abbess Katharina Gieringer of Rottenmünster (Germany)

She was head of the chapter for noble ladies, which was situated in Rottweil am Neckar in the Schwarzwald (Black Forest) in Württemberg.


 

1389-97 Princess-Abbess Margaretha III van Horne-Perwez of Thorn, Lady of Thorn, Ittervoort, Grathem, Baexem, Stramproy, Ell, Haler and Molenbeerse (The Netherlands)

Sovereign of the Ecclesiastical Principality of Thorn. Not much is known about her reign.


 

1390-95 Abbess Nullius Francesca d'Angiò of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

A member of the ruling d'Anjou-family of Napoli.


 

Around 1390 Princess-Abbess Elsa of Elten (Germany) 

Named as Eerwoerdige und Hocgeborene vorstinne vrow Elsa in a document. Dispensed both high and low juridstiction and held hunting rights in her territories. Also held the right to appoint and dismiss clerics, and the right to excommunicate or ban clerics was reserved to the Pope, not the Bishop of Utrecht.


 

1391-1410 Reigning Abbess Sophia von Daching of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Regensburg was the seat of the Imperial Diet and the Chapter and Territory of Niedermünster was one of the most influential and prestigious.


 

Around 1392 Princess-Abbess Gunegundis of the Royal Chapter St. Georg at the Hradschin in Prague  (Czech Republic)

The St. Georg auf dem Hradschin zu Prag, Sankt-Georg Kloster or Sv. was the oldest convent in the Bohmian Lands founded in 973 by Prince Boleslav II and his sister, Mlada.


 

1393-1431 Reigning Abbess Blanche d'Harcourt of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

The daughter of Jean Comte d'Harcourt et d'Aumale and Cathérine de Bourbon, she was also the cousin of king Charles VI. She was succeeded by her cousin Marie d'Harcourt.

 

1394-1400 Princess-Abbess Margaretha II Wiellin of Baindt (Germany) 

The abbey was founded 1227 as a Cistercian Convent (Zisterzienserinnen-Klosters), and the free worldly chapter for noble ladies became Princesses of Empire in about 1376.


 

1395-1418 Reigning Abbess Agnès de Nieppe of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Succeeded by Marie I de la Chapelle.


 

1395-97 Reigning Abbess Katharina von Heudorf of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Head of the important teritorrial chapter in Swabia.


 

1396-1430 Reigning  Abbess-General Urraca Díez de Orozco of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

In spiritual matters the Abbes of Las Huelgas enjoyed an unique position as she was granted rights normally only granted to the male members of the Catholic hierarchy : she had the right to preach, say mass, hear  confessions, nominate parish priests, etc.

 

1396-1446 Abbess Nullius Francesca d'Enghien of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

Sister of Maria d'Enghien who was Countess of Lecce (1384-1414), Princess of Tarento (1406-07) and wife of King Ladislao of Napoli.


 

1398-1404 Princess-Abbess Anna I von Bussnang of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

The noble von Bussenang family had many clerical members - Abbots of St. Gallen and high officials by the bishop of Konstantz and Zürich and other parts of Switzerland. 


 

1398-1416 Reigning Abbess.....von Reischach of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

The stewardship and higher jurisdiction came into the posession of the family of Werdenberg in 1399. The Abbess held the lower jurisdiction.


 

1399-1421Princess-Abbess Aloisia von Herbersdorf of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

Member of the Austrian family of Counts of Herberdorf.

 

1400-03 Princess-Abbess Ursula I von Brasberg of Baindt (Germany)

As Princess of The Empire (Fürstäbtissin or Reichsäbtissin), she had a vote in the College of Prelates on the Ecclesiastical Bench in the Council of Princes in the Diet of the Holy Roman Empire.


 

1400-17 Countess-Abbess Bertrade von Schneuditz of Gernrode
1417-25 Princess-Abbess of Gernrode (Germany)

She was the first ruler of the territory to be granted the rank of Princess of The Empire in 1417.


 

1400-02 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth II von Murach of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

It is not certain who was chosen as her successor. Margaretha I reigned until 1435.


 

1402-10 Reigning Abbess Anna III von Gundelfingen of Buchau (Germany)

Probably daughter of Stephan von Gundelfingen. She was canoness around and 1385 and is confirmed as abbess in 1402. Her family was very influential in the Chapter during the 15th century, and she lived (circa 1360-1410).


 

1402-20 Princess-Abbess Adelheid IV von Schwandegg of Schänis (Switzerland)

In 1403 she entered a Burgrecht (Borough right) with the City of Zürich. The chapter had since then in the Münsterhof its own office that collected the income of the chapter in the city. She was daughter of Ulrich von Griffensee, of the Baronial family of Schwandegg, and Anna von Wolen.


 

1402-12 Countess Abbess Sophia III zu Braunschweig-Lüneburg of Gandersheim (Germany)

The Princess restored the economic situation that had deteriorated during the reign of her predecessor, Luitgard III zu Hammerstein. She was the only child of Duke Ludwig and Mathilde zu Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel. She (d. 1412).


 

1403-06 Princess-Abbess Adelheid III Abtsreuter of Baindt (Germany)

As ruler of the principality, she had the right to a seat on the Ecclesiastical Bench in the Diet of the Holy Roman Empire.


Unnamed Reichsfürstin of Zürich

1404-12 Princess-Abbess Benedicta von Bechburg of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

Member of an ancient Baronial (Freiherrliche) family in today's Canton Solothurn with close links of the Canton of Bern.


 

1405-35 Princess-Abbess Adelheid IV von Isenburg of Quedlinburg (Germany)

1426 Quedlinburg joined the Hanse, the most powerful trade association in Europe against her will, showing the increased independence of the city. In 1435 she resigned and died five years later. She was daughter of Count Heinrich and Countess Adelheid von Isenburg. Resigned in 1435. (d. 1441).


 

Around 1405 Reigning Abbess Adelheid II von Hallwyl of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

She was member of an old Baronial (freiherrliche) family which was in the service of the Habsburgs and worked for the city of Bern, and was in charge of a number of lordships in Switzerland.


 

1406-1408 Reigning Abbess Margaretha I von Wachingen of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

Related to Bishop Bertold von Wachingen. Her family originated in Mittenwald in Bavaria.


 

Around 1406-09... Princess-Abbess Anna of the Royal Chapter St. Georg at the Hradschin in Prague  (Czech Republic)

In 1406 she instigated a day of memory of the late Abbess Katherina. Dorotha was mentioned as Prioress in 1409 and Katherina as Cutrix


 

1407-12 Princesse-Abbesse Catherine II von Blamont of Remiremont  (France)

She was also Abbess of Epinal. In 1403 the Pope accepted the transformance of the Abbey into a chapter for noble ladies. She was the youngest daughter of Theobald von Blamont and Marguerite de Vaire. 
The successor of Jeanne d’Aigremonts, she was removed from office by Pope Gregory XII.


 

1408-37 Reigning Abbess Bertha III von Freisingen of Gutenzell (Germany)

After the fall of the Stauffen kings the Chapter were able to became an Imperial Immediacy (reichsfrei), and in 1417 Emperor Sigismund granted certain privileges.


 

1409-42 Reigning Abbess Mathilde III von Waldeck of Herford (Germany)

Also known as Mechtild, she was also Abbess of Heerse, and the daughter of Count Heinrich III von Waldeck and Elisabeth von Berg. Her sister, Elisabeth, was Abbess of Kaufingen until her death in 1495.


 

 1410-26 Reigning Abbess Agnes von Tengen of Buchau (Germany)

In the year of her death she laid the foundation of the chaplancy of the Holy Cross (Heligkreuzkaplanie). Possibly daughter of Johann the Younger, Lord of Elisau and Freeherr of Tengen and Margrethe von Nellenburg. Lived (circa 1381-1426).


 

1410-13 Reigning Abbess Katharina I von Egloffstein of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Member of a Swiss countly family, who were lords of the Castle of Egloffstein in the Swiss Franconia (Schweizische Franken).


 

1411-15 Reigning Abbess Margaretha II von Grünenberg of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

Member of the Swiss noble family of the lords of Langenstein and Grünenberg.


 

1412-29 Princess-Abbess Anastasia von Hohenklingen of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

Represented by her father, Walther IX, Lord von Hohenklingen, Guardian of Stein am Rhein, at the Council of Konstanz, which assembled under the presidency of Emperor Sigmund.


 

Around 1412-about 1437 Princess-Abbess Lucia von Kerpen of Elten (Germany)

Founded the first public school in the area in 1412 and in 1437 she founded the chapter of Saint Ursula.


 

1412-17 Countess Abbess Agnes II zu Braunschweig-Grubenhagen of Gandersheim (Germany)
1417-39 Princess-Abbess

She received the rank and title of a Princess of the Realm in 1417. Daughter of Duke Erich I of Braunschweig-Grubenhagen Elisabeth of Braunschweig-Göttingen. Her sister, Sophie, was de-facto ruler of the territory from 1443. Agnes lived (circa 1406-39).


 

1412-18 Princesse-Abbesse Henriette II d'Amoncourt of Remiremont  (France)

She had been Secrète 1381, 1384 and afterwards. Her election was 1307 contested by the supporters of Catherine de Blâmont and Henri de Blâmont deployed his troops in the territory, making it impossible for her to take up her position until 1412. Appointed Princess of the Realm from 1415


 

1413-26 Princess-Abbess Margareta I von der Mark-Arenberg of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

During the 1500th century Essen was the only Imperial Free Worldly Ladies Chapter to develop a full "land-constitution" as territorial state within the German Realm with three estates; The Ladies of the Chapter (canonesses), the male canons in the Abbey and the Office-holders of low nobility of the chapter. Margareta I was daughter of Eberhard von der Mark, Lord of Arenberg etc and Marie von Looz. One of her sisters, Maria, was Lady of the Chapter until she left it to marry and the other, Anna, was elected Abbess in Freckenhorst in 1427.


 

1413-17 Reigning Abbess Barbara Höffer of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

In 1416 she and her chapter appointed the Provsosty of the Chapter to Heinrich V. Notthafft v. Wernberg as life-tenantcy from Georg v. Abensberg.


 

1416-56 Reigning Abbess Elisabeth II von Leiningen of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

She might have been the seventh child of Count Rudolf von Leiningen-Rixingen, and Agnes von Zweibrücken.


One of the sisters, Isabelle and Christine de Franckenberg

1417-23 Princess-Abbess Isabelle II de Franckenberg of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

Also known as Belle, she was the 35th ruler of the territory and was succeeded three others of the same family, Christine, Agnès and Wilhelmine.


 

1417-22 Reigning Abbess Herzenleid von Wildenwarth of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Cordula von Wildenwarth was Coadiutrix (Deputy Reigning Abbess) 1417-27.


 

1418 Princesse-Abbesse Marguetite II de Salvain of Remiremont  (France)

Another version of her name is Grilde de Salverne.


 

1418-38 Reigning Abbess Marie I de la Chapelle of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

The chapter was placed under the direct authority of the Pope.


 

1418-21 Reigning Abbess..... von Schwandorf of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Her first name is to be checked.


 

1419-36 Reigning Abbess Brigitta Kopp of Rottenmünster (Germany)

Since 1227 the Abbey had been place directly under the Emperor as a Realm of the Holy Roman Empire. 


 

1420-51 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth III von Greiffensee of Schänis (Switzerland)

In 1438 the Lordship of Windegg became a possession of the Cantons of Glarus and Schwyz, and thereby the chapter became a part of the Swiss Confederation (schweizerischen Eidgenossenschaft), and broke the links to the Holy Roman Empire. And even though the emperor confirmed the rights of the chapter in 1442, Glarus and Schwyz from then on considered themselves to be the rightful successors of the Royal Stewards of the chapter. Elisabeth was member of an old noble family that originated near Zürich.


 

1421-28 Princess-Abbess Gertrud II von Helfenberg of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

Member of a Bavarian noble family.

 

1421-44 Princesse-Abbesse Isabella de Demengeville of Remiremont  (France)

Also known as Yasbel, she had been Doyenne and Second-in-Command 1414-21. In 1441 Duchess Isabelle de Lorraine stated in a document that the chapter had 40 noble ladies residing.


1422 Princess-Abbess Margaretha II von Bussnang of Säckingen (Germany)

Was in office for about 6 months before she died. The noble von Bussenang family had a tradition of occupying high clerical offices - Abbots of St. Gallen and high officials by the bishop of Konstantz and Zürich and other parts of Switzerland. Another member of the family, Elisabeth, was Abbess of Säckingen (1307-18) before it became a principality within the German Empire. 


 

1422-28 Princess-Abbess Johanna von Hohenklingen of Säckingen (Germany)

Listed as Kellerin (Wine-maker) in 1395. She was sister of Klaranna (1379/80-1422), and daughter of Freiherr Walther von Hohenklingen, Lord of Stein. Her family was closely related to the Lords von Brandis im Emmental and the von Bechburg in the Canton Solothurn was of importance, and the family split into two lines in the 14th century -  Hohenklingen-Bechburg and Hohenklingen-Brandis.


 

1422-27 Reigning Abbess Anna I von Streitberg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

The Lords of Streitberg were originally noble officials of the local Bishop they joined the service of the Duke of Meran. Throughout the years the various family-lines fought over the inheritance and who were to be in charge of the Castle of Streitberg in Bavaria.

Another of the Franckenberg-sisters

1423-41 Princess-Abbess Christine de Franckenberg of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

Succeeded her sister, Isabelle I, and was member of the family De Mérode who used the surname of Franckenberg. 


 

1423-25 Reigning Abbess Henriette I de Mello of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

The chapter was still marked by the 100 years war, a conflict lasting from 1337 to 1453 between two royal houses for the French throne the House of Valois and the House of Plantagenet or Anjou


 

Circa 1425-circa 30 Reigning Abbess Marguerite III de Bréban of Jouarre (France)

Daughter of Admiral Pierre de Bréban.


 

1425-45 Princess-Abbess Agnes Schenkin von Landsberg und Sydow of Gernrode (Germany)

Also known as Schenkin von Landsberg or Schenkin von Sydow, she brought the chapter in disrespute. She was fighting with the ladies of the chapter, who acused her of misusing the fortune of the stift. She got a warning letter from the pope and later also one from the Cardinal of St. Angelia and the Bishop of Halberstadt, but she did not change her ways and a court was put together consisting of the Bishop of Halberstadt and the Princes of Anhalt and Brandenburg, who removed her right to make decisions on her own. But at that time she had already died. Her family had been appointed to the office of "Schenk" of the Margraves of Landsberg in the beginning of the 12th century and after Duke Rudolf of Sachsen took over the territory in 1328, they were given the fief of Teupitz and were also lords of Sydow.


 

Around 1425 Princess-Abbess Phya of the Royal Abbey of Andlau, Lady of Wagenbourg and Marlenheim etc. (France)

As Abbess she was Lady of numerous fiefs in Alsace, and head of the Abbey of l'Etival in France.


 

1425-38 Reigning Abbess Margarethe von Reischach of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Member of the member of the family of Freiherren von Reischach and a decendant of Konrad von Reischach who married Titlar Queen Isabella of Mallorca.


 

1426-45 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth IV Stecke van Beeck of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

After the resignation of Margareta von der Mark, 10 of the ladies of the Chapter voted for Elisabeth and 11 of the male canons voted for Margarete von Limburg, who had the support of the Duke Kleve. The ladies - referring to the fact that they alone had the right to vote according to the various royal ad papal privileges -proclaimed Elisabeth as Abbess, the men, referring to their majority, proclaimed to Margareta. The pope first confirmed the latter, but soon after withdrew the confirmation and installed Elisabeth. She has sought refuge at the castle of Borbeck with the ladies of the chapter and was siege by the forces of Limburg, not until 1428 did the Papal legates manage to establish a ceasefire and Elisabeth was confirmed as Abbess and the following she also granted the imperial fief. (kaiserliche Belehnung).


 

1426-49 Reigning Abbess Klara von Montfort of Buchau (Germany)

She was daughter of Count Heinrich V von Montfort and Anna Truchsess von Waldburg and stepdaughter of Count Stephan von Guldenfingen, who was very influential in the chapter. Because of ilness, she resigned in 1449 in favour of her relative Margarethe von Werdenberg, who was still a minor at the time, and died later the same year.


 

1427 Reigning Abbess Beatrix von Rotheneck of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Since 1002 the Reichsstift was placed directly under the king as the other states in Germany, and the chapter was granted royal protection and, immunity.


 

1427-44 Acting Reigning Abbess Osanna von Streitberg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

As Coadiutrix she acted as head of the chapter and territory.


 

1427-34 Princess-Abbess Klara Strölin of Heggbach (Germany)

Also known as Ströl or Ströler, she was the first Abbess of the chapter to be given the rank of Princess of the Realm in 1429. Two of the three co-heirs to the lordship of Achstetten, Eberhard and Hans von Freyberg, had sold their rights of patronage over Burgrieden to Heggbach Abbey in 1420 and the Abbey possessed the right to dispense low justice from at least 1429 in Sulmingen and from 1491 in Baustetten. In Mietingen the abbey had acquired the right to dispense both low and high justice in 1442.
She was deposed and (d.  1460).


 

1428-63 Princess-Abbess Anna I von Herbersdorf of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

She is known in a folkstale as "Frau Hitt", a cruel and despotic ruler of the Chapter and surrounding territories.


 

1428-30 Princess-Abbess Margareth II von Klingen of Säckingen (Germany)

Probably identical with Margareth von Altenklingen who is mentioned as Küsterin (Verge) and acted as "election officer" at the election of her predecessor.


 

1429-84 Princess-Abbess Anna II von Höwen of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

Member of an old Swiss noble family, which saw several Prince-Abbots and Bishops.


 

1430-32 Princess-Abbess Anastasia von Geroldseck of Säckingen (Germany)

First mentioned in documents from 1430 because of her dispute with Albrecht von Schönau and the compromise reached with his widow about the bailiffs' office (Meieramt) in 1432. Her family were lords of the Lordships of Lahr and Hohengeroldseck by Strasbourg.


 

1430-33 Reigning Abbess-General Juana de Astúñiga of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

As all the abbesses of the chapter, she was a member of one of the most illustrious noble families of Castillia.

 

Circa 1430-33 Reigning Abbess Marie II de Bréban of Jouarre (France)

Succeeded sister, but was deposed by king Charles VII.


 

1431-51 Reigning Abbess Marie II d'Harcourt of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

Successor of her cousin Blanche d'Harcout, she was daughter of Jacque d'Harcourt, Baron de Montgomery etc and Jeanne d'Enghien, chatelaine de Mons.


 

1431-34 "Contra Abbess" Marguerite de Beaufort de Montmorency of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

Elected in opposition to Marie II and was not recognized by the Pope.  


 

1432-84 Princess-Abbess Agnes II von Sulz of Säckingen (Germany)

She got papal dispensation to assume the office as she was on 22 at the time of her election. She mediated in a dispute between the fishermen of Säckingen and Laufenburg in 1438, Emperor Friederich II confirmed the rights and privilleges of the Chapter in 1442, which suffered under the dispute beteen Austria and the Swiss Confederates and she reached an agreement with the Austrian Lordship Rheinfelden about the rights of the town of Mumpf. Her son, Hohann Thurn, was granted a position as canon at Säckingen through Papal  intervention. She was daughter of Count Rudolf von Sulz and Ursula von Habsburg-Laufenburg, Heiress of her fahter, Hans von Habsburg-Laufenburg, and lived (1409-84).


 

1433-57 Reigning  Abbess-General María de Sandoval I of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Member of a Castillian noble family that held many high state- and ecclesiastical offices.

 

1433-62 Reigning Abbess Jeanne III de Melun of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

Sister of Philippe de Melun, councillor of King Charles VII. After her death both Isabelle de Neuville and Marguerite de Levilly were elected abbesses. Jeanne d'Ailly took over in the end.


 

Until 1435 Princess-Abbess Margarethe I Sattelbogerin of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

It is not certain whom she followed on the post as Reichsfürstin and ruler of the ecclesiastical territory.


 

1435-56 Princess-Abbess Barbara I von Absberg of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

The Head of the territory had been a Princess of the Realm since 1315.


 

1435-38 Princess-Abbess Agathe II Grähter of Heggbach (Germany)

Another version of her surname is Gretterin.


 

1435-58 Princess-Abbess Anna I von Plauen-Reuss of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Daughter of Count Heinrich IX von Reuss, Lord of Plauen und Auerbach and Countess Anna von Riesenberg. (d. 1458).


 

1436 Reigning-Abbess Elisabeth von Rothenstein of Rottenmünster (Germany)

The Chapter was granted Reichsunmittelbarkeit in 1442 and the Abbess became Lady of the Chapter and it's possessions, and given the right to collect taxes and customs. After the Holy Roman Empire was divided into 6 administrative units, called Imperial Circles or Reichskreisen in 1495, in the Abbess of Rottenmünster became member of the Bench of Prelates of the Swabian Circle Estate (Reichskreisstandschaft), the local assembly of the Schwäbischer Kreis. 1521 the Abbess was mentioned as Imperial Prelate in an inventory of the Reichsstände - the territories of the Realm - which meant that she was member of the College of the Prelates of Swabia, whose 22 members (Abbesses and Abbots) had a joint vote in the Council of the Princes of the Imperial Diet, where the representative of the Prelates sat on the Ecclesiastical Bench. The next known Princess-Abbess was Ursula Scherlin, who was in office 1657-87.


 

1437-44 Reigning Abbess Agnes of Gutenzell (Germany)

Emperor Sigismund confirmed the privileges of the Chapter in 1437, and they formed the legal foundation of the territory's position as an independent state.


 

1438-50 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth I Hoffmann of Heggbach (Germany)

In old sources her surname is written as Hofmannin. The chapter aquired the right to dispence both low and high justice in one of its possessions, the village of Mietingen, in 1442.


 

1438-44 Princess-Abbess Anna V Schenkin zu Limpurg of Baindt (Germany)

1437 Emperor Sigismund had granted the Princess-Abbess of Baindt the right to act as a low court judge (Niedere Gerichtshofheit).


 

1439 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth I von Dorstadt of Gandersheim (Germany)

Succeeded Agnes II zu Braunschweig-Grubenhagen.


 

1438-65 Reigning Abbess Bonne de a Viefville of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Daughter of the Seigneur of Thiennes and Blaringhem.


 

1439-52 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth II zu Braunschweig-Grubenhagen of Gandersheim (Germany)

Also known as Ilse, she was sister of Agnes who reigned the territory (1412-39), she was elected Fürstäbtissin in the year she became widow of Duke Kasimir V of Pommern, even though - according to the statutes from 1357 - she would not have been allowed to enter the chapter as she was not unmarried. She lived (circa 1409-52).


 

Around 1440-46 Princess-Abbess Sophie of the Royal Abbey of Andlau, Lady of Wagenbourg and Marlenheim etc. (France)

Transformed the lower parts the north transept of the Chapel .


 

1441-49 Princess-Abbess Agnès I de Franckenberg of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

The third ruler of the territory from the Merode-family, which used the name of Franckenberg.


 

1441-52 Reigning Abbess Barbara von Reischach of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

One of many members of her family to be Abbesses of the chapter.


 

1442-84 Reigning-Abbess Margarethe I von Gleichen of Herford (Germany)

She was in dispute with the Hereditary Steward and Lords von Helfenstein-Sporkenburg about a number of tenants and villages and against her protests, Johann XII von Helfenstein, Lord of Sporkenburg, placed the villages Arnberg and Immendorf under the protection of the Archbishop of Trier. This created the situation where the Abbey were Lords of the Fief and the Bishopcy were Lord Guardians.


 

1442-43 Contra-Abbess Margarete von Braunschweig-Grubenhagen of Herford (Germany)

In oppositon to Abbess Margarete von Gleichen. 1476-79 Jakobe von Neuenhar was Contra-Abbess.


 

1444-57 Princess-Abbess Wandelburgis of Baindt (Germany)

In the first year of her reign, she temporary took over the Patron-rights over Wechstsweiler.


 

1444-59 Reigning Abbess Dorothea Neth of Gutenzell (Germany)

It is not clear when the abbesses became Princesses of Empire, Princess-Abbesses (title Reichsäbtissin zu Gutenzell), but in 1417 and 1437 the Chapter was granted certain privileges by Emperor Sigismund.


 

1444-52 Princesse-Abbesse Henrica III de Vienne of Remiremont  (France)

Also known as Henriette de Vienne.


 

1444-48 Reigning Abbess Ursula von Taufkirchen-Hohenrain und Hörhlenbach of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Originated from a family of Lords of the Watercastle in Taufkirchen near Munich and the lords of Hohenrain in Switzerland.


 

1445-47 Princess-Abbess Sophia II von Daun-Oberstein of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

Member of the family of the Counts von Daun-Falkenstein, Lords of Daun-Oberstein und Falkenstein, who were vassals, of the Duchy of Berg.


 

1445-63 Princess-Abbess Mechtildis II von Anhalt of Gernrode (Germany)

Perhaps Coadjurix and Pröbstin (Deputy Abbess) from 1439. Also known as Mathilde, she was daughter of Siegmunt I von Anhalt-Dessau and Jutta von Querfurt. Her niece, Scholastika, was abbess from 1569. Mechtildis (d.1463).


 

1446-54 Princess-Abbess Jakoba van Heinsberg-Loon of Thorn, Lady of Thorn, Ittervoort, Grathem, Baexem, Stramproy, Ell, Haler and Molenbeerse (The Netherlands)

Took over as acting sovereign of the Ecclesiastical Principality from Mechtildis, who vacated the position, but remained titular Abbess to her death. Jacobäa abdicated in 1454 and moved to the court of her half-brother, the Prince-Bishop of Liège, where she seems to have fallen in love with the Knight van der Marck. Since she was also very pious she withdrew to a Benedictine Chapter - another version of the story is that he died in a duel. She was daughter of Johann II von Loen, Lord of Jülich and Heinsberg and his second wife, Anna von Solms, and died 1466.


 

1447-59 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth V von Saffenberg of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

She might have been identical with the Elisabeth von Saffenberg, Lady of Saffenberg, Co-Heiress of Thomberg, Lanscroon, Koningsfeld and Meyl who was married Luther von Quadt zu Lantscroon, Knight from 1464 and Lord of Tomberg, Lanscroon, Hardenberg and Vorst. This Elisabeth was daughter of Croft van Saffenberg en Elisabeth Tomberg.


 

1447-70 Abbess Nullius Sancia Fungeta of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

Among the many privileges she enjoyed as Abbess were that of appointing her own vicar-general through whom she governed her abbatial territory; that of selecting and approving confessors for the laity; and that of authorizing clerics to have the cure of souls in the churches under her jurisdiction.


 

1448-68 Reigning Abbess Ottilia von Abensberg of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Member of an ancient Austrian noble family.


 

1449-96 Princess-Abbess Margaretha I von Werdenberg of Buchau (Germany)

Only 12 when elected abbess, and the Pope appointed the Counts Ulrich and Ludwig von Württemberg and the City of Ulm to run the affairs of the Chapter, and her mother, Elisabeth von Württemberg, was also influential. First mentioned as Princess of the Realm in 1455. She problably took over the reigns herself around 1466 when she reached the age of 30, the normal minimum age for abbesses. Her father was Johann IV von Werdenberg of the House of Montfort, she was succeeded by sister, Anna, and ived (circa 1436-66).


 

1449-62 Princess-Abbess Marguerite I d'Escornais of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

The abbess of Nivelles was Princess of the Holy Roman Empire and Political Leader of the City of Nivelles.


 

1450-54 Princess-Abbess Agatha von Stadion of Heggbach (Germany)

The Countess was member of the noble family von Stadion zu Börningheim that supplied the church with many bishops, imperial abbots and Princess-Abbesses throughout the centuries. She resigned and (d. 1480).


 

Around 1450 Princess-Abbess Johanka z Risenberka of the Royal Chapter St. Georg at the Hradschin in Prague  (Czech Republic)

Daughter of Děpolt z Risenberka (d. 1474) and Kateřina Sokolová z Lemberka (d. 1470).


 

Around 1450 Reigning Abbess Germaine de Chambray of Montvilliers (France)

Daughter of Jean III de Chambray, seigneur de Chambray and Gilette Cholet


 

Around 1450 Reigning Abbess Jeanne de Chambray of Montvilliers (France)

Succeeded her relative Germaine de Chambray at a not known time.


 

1451-78 Princess-Abbess Adelheid V Trüllerey genannt von Trostberg of Schänis (Switzerland)

Even though the chapter had become part of the Swiss Confederation in 1438, the Abbess still used the title of a Princess of the Holy Roman Realm (Fürstin des Heiligen Römischen Reiches). Her sister, Adnes, was Meisterein (Mistres) in Hermetschwil. They were daughters of Rüdiger von Trullerey, of a noble family from Aargau and Schaffenhausen in Switzerland, which also had possessions in Germany, and Anes from Trostberg.


 

1451-57 Reigning Abbess Marie III de Montmorency of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

Daughter of Jean II de Montmorency, Seigneur de Beaussault and Isabelle de Nesle, Dame du Plessis-Cacheleu. Her older sister, Catherine inherited the titles of dame de Beaussault et de Breteuil after the death of two of their brothers. Marie (d. 1461).


 

1452-67 Princess-Abbess Walburg zu Spiegelberg of Gandersheim (Germany)

She was thrown out of the chapter by troops from Braunschweig in 1453. Her election was confirmed by the Pope in 1453, 1456, 1458 and 1465, but she was not able to claim her rights, and in 1467 she resigned


 

1452-53 Princesse-Abbesse Jeanne III de Chauviré of Remiremont (France)

As sovereign of the territory she had the right to choose the mayor of Remiremont from a list proposed by the nobles of the city. The mayor's deputy, the Grand Eschevin, was chosen by the mayor from a list of 3 candidates presented by the bourgeois of the city with her advice. Her family originated from Haute Saône south of Paris.


 

1453-67 De Facto Ruler Sophia IV zu Braunschweig-Grubenhagen of Gandersheim (Germany)
1467-85 Princess-Abbess

The troops of her brother, Duke Heinrich III from Braunschweig pawed her way to the office by exiling Princess-Abbess Waldburg, and after her abdication in 1467 she was confirmed in the office. Her sister, Agnes II, reigned 1412-39. She lived (circa 1407-85).


 

1453 Reigning Abbess Elisabeth Selnhofer of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

The sources show how her family paid 63 pound for her support when she entered the chapter.


 

1454-80 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth II Kröhl of Heggbach (Germany)

In 1467 she introduced a more sombre version of the convent life of the Cistercian order. She was probably daughter of a citizen of Lindau.


 

1454-73 Princess-Abbess Elsa van Buren of Thorn, Lady of Thorn, Ittervoort, Grathem, Baexem, Stramproy, Ell, Haler and Molenbeerse (The Netherlands)

Became acting sovereign of the Ecclesiastical Territory, after Jacobäa van Heinsberg vacated the post, the former Abbess Mechtildis van Heine, did not die until 1459. Elsa was excommunicated because of her refusal to follow certain Papal decisions. 


 

1454-64 Reigning Abbess Elisabeth Rentz of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Member of a seigneurial family.


 

1455-73 Princesse-Abbesse Alix de Paroye of Remiremont  (France)

Held the office of Dame Doyenne and Second-in-Command 1452-55. In 1468 the territory was hit by plague.


 

1456-79 Princess-Abbess Kunigunde von Egloffstein of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Member of a Swiss noble family, originating in Burg Egloffstein now in Bavaria, and divided into various sidelines.


 

Around 1456 Reigning Abbess Ursula von Mirlingen of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

Also sovereign over a number of possessions in Argau, Swabia and Alsace.


 

1457-62 Princess-Abbess Walpurgis Aigler of Baindt (Germany)

The Chapter had been founded in 1227 as a Cistercian Convent (Zisterzienserinnen-Klosters) and in, 1241 it was placed directly under the protection of the Emperor, 1263 declared free of any Guardianship, 1309 the Document of Protection was confirmed by king Conradin, 1315 privileges confirmed, 1376 the Chapter became Reichsunmittelbar and the Abbess was named Princesses of Empire and the Fürstäbtissin was mentioned as a Imperial Prelate (Reichsprälatin) in an inventory of the Reichsstände - the Estates of the Realm - which meant that she was member of the College of the Prelates of Swabia, whose 22 members (Abbesses and Abbots) had a joint vote in the Council of the Princes of the Imperial Diet, where the representative of the Prelates sat on the Ecclesiastical Bench.  


 

1457-75 Reigning Abbess Marie IV de Bretagne of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

Daughter of King Henry III of England and Eleanor Berenger of Province. The order had suffered severely from the decay of religion, which was general about this time, as well as from the Hundred Years War. In the three priories of St-Aignan, Breuil, and Ste-Croix there were in all but five nuns and one monk, where there had been 187 nuns and 17 monks at the beginning of the thirteenth century, and other houses were no better off. In 1459, a papal commission decided upon a mitigation of rules that could no longer be enforced, and nuns were even allowed to leave the order on the simple permission of their priories. Dissatisfied with the mitigated life of Fontevrault, she moved to the priory of La Madeleine-les-Orléans in 1471. Here she deputed a commission consisting of religious of various orders to draw up a definite Rule based on the Rules of Blessed Robert, St. Benedict, and St. Augustine, together with the Acts of Visitations. The resulting code was finally approved by Sixtus IV in 1475, and four years later it was made obligatory upon the whole order. She lived (1442-77).


 

1457-59 Reigning Abbess-General Maria de Almenárez of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Like Bishops, she held her own courts, in civil and criminal cases, granted letters dismissorial for ordination, and issued licenses authorizing priests, within the limits of her abbatial jurisdiction, to hear confessions, to preach, and to engage in the cure of souls.

 

1458-1511 Princess-Abbess Hedwig von Sachsen of Quedlinburg (Germany)

1465 Emperor Friedrich III confirmed her secular rights as Princess of the Realm (Reichsfürstin). 1477 the citizens of Quedlinburg raised arms to remove her, but she was supported by the Dukes Ernst und Albrecht with 400 mounted and 200 foot-soldiers, who occupied the castle after a short fight and a little later the city capitulates. Her terms were written down in a treaty - among others she forced the Council of the City to leave the Hanse - the Northern German Trade Association. When the administration of the Holy Roman Empire was divided into Imperial Circles, Reichskreisen, in 1495, she became member of the Upper Saxon Circle Estate (Reichskreisstandschaft), the regional assembly. She was daughter of Kurfürst Friedrich II and Archduchess Margarete von Habsburg of Austria, and lived (1504-74).


 

1459-89 Princess-Abbess Sophia III von Gleichen of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

Her family were Counts of Gleichen in Thüringen.


 

Around 1459 Reigning Abbess Eva von Erpach of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

Her family was Free Lords and Lords zu Erpach und Bickenbach in Odenwald and the city of Michelstadt.


 

1459-73 Reigning Abbess Ottilia Durchlacher of Gutenzell (Germany)

Emperor Sigismund confirmed the privileges of the Chapter in 1437, and they formed the legal foundation of the territory's position as an independent state.


 

1459-77 Reigning  Abbess-General Juana de Guzmán I of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

As Señora Abadesa of Las Huelgas she possed the privilege also to confirm Abbesses of subsidiary convents, to impose censures, and to convoke synods.

 

1462-74 Princess-Abbess Agnes II de Franckenberg of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

Member of the family of Merode-Frankenberg, who were Guardians or Stewards if the Imperial Eccleastical Territory of Burtscheid. It's members were sometimes known as Merode sometimes as Franckenberg, but most Princess-Abbesses of Nivelle and of Burtscheid used the name of Franckenberg.


 

1462-71 Princess-Abbess Anna VI von Räns of Baindt (Germany)

The Abbey was founded 1227 it's Princess-Abbess had been Sovereign Ruler of the Ecclesiastical Territory since around 1373 with the rank of a Princess of The Empire (Fürstäbtissin or Reichsäbtissin).


Abbesse Jeanne IV of Jouarre 

1462-91 Reigning Abbess Jeanne IV d'Ailly of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

The lands that was abandoned as a result of the war, weighed heavily on her and she constantly leased them out to the very poor. This was the origin of the association known as the "Usages" which still exists today.


 

1463-74 Princess-Abbess Begina Grassler of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

The Abbess had been a Prelate of the Realm in 1242 and member of the bank of the Swabian Prelates of the Realm in the Imperial Diet - Schwäbisches Reichsprälatenkollegium.


 

1463-69 Princess-Abbess Margaretha von Merwitz of Gernrode (Germany)

She was member of an old noble family, which were in charge of various Lordships among others Nauendorf, Merbitz, Kleinmerbitz und Priester.


 

Around 1463 Princess-Abbess Suzanne d'Eptingen of the Royal Abbey of Andlau, Lady of Wagenbourg and Marlenheim etc. (France)

Confirmed the fief, castle and village of Wangenbourg at Georges de Wangen and his brothers.


 

1464-96 Reigning Abbess Anna von Reischach von Reichenstein-Linz of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Resigned (d. 1499).


 

1465-75 Reigning Abbess Ursule de la Viefville of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Sister of Bonne, who reigned 1438-65.


Scholastica von Gernrode 

1469-1504 Princess-Abbess Scholastika von Anhalt-Zerbst of Gernrode and Frose (Germany)

The Princess grew up in the Convent of Helfta and became a canoniss in Quedlinburg before she was elected Fürstäbtissin at the age of 18, but was not confirmed in office by Emperor Friederich III until 1488. She stabilized the internal affairs of the chapter, but the finances was put under heavy strain by a process against the Bishop of Halberstadt, who had made a dam which flodded parts of the lands of the territory. After 24 years it ended with a settlement. She was daughter of Georg I von Anhalt-Zerbst and Sophie von Honstein (d. 1451). Her aunt, Mechtildis, had been sovereign of the territory 1451-63, and her sister, Agnes was Princess-Abbess of Gandersheim from 1485. Scholastika lived (1451-1504).


 

1469-75 Acting Reigning Abbess Margaretha III von Paulstorff of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

As Coadiutrix she was Acting Chief of the chapter and territory.


 

1471-1504 Princess-Abbess Margarethe III vom Feld of Baindt (Germany)

In 1478, by a visitation of the bishop of Trient, the Chapter was "Hortus Floridus" - describer of flowers - for the first time.


 

Around 1471 Reigning Abbess Osanna Jäger of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

The Chapter acquired many possessions in Argau, Swabia and Alsace, but the abbess did apparently not have the dignity of Princess of the Empire.


 

1472-92 Reigning Abbess Apollonia von Hohenberg of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

Daughter of Sigmund von Hohenberg, of the House of Hohenzollern, and Ursula von Räzüns. 


 

1473 Princess-Abbess Catherine II de Neufchatel of Remiremont  (France)

Her election was not confirmed. A sister, Agnes was a canoness at Remiremont until her death in 1474 and another, Marguerite, was Abbess of Baume-les-Dame. They were children of Thibaut IX, Lord de Neufchatel, de Blamont, etc, Vicomte de Baume, Marshall and Captain-General of Burgundy and Bonne de Chateauvillain, Dame de Grancey. Catherine lived (1455-1501).


 

1473-1505 Princess-Abbess Jeanne III d'Anglure de Germainvilliers of Remiremont  (France)

She had been Doyenne and Second in Command 1427-52, and probably held other offices in the meantime. In 1484 the troops of Maréchal de Bourgogne and the Lord de Joinville fought a battle on the walls of Remiremont and the lands of the abbey was ruined by the war. Also Dame de Germainvilliers, and lived (1474-1505).


 

1473-88 Reigning Abbess Ursula Egglofer of Gutenzell (Germany)

The Swabian Chapter was mainly for Swabian noble maidens.


 

1473-86 Princess-Abbess Gertrudis de Sombreffe of Thorn, Lady of Thorn, Ittervoort, Grathem, Baexem, Stramproy, Ell, Haler and Molenbeerse (The Netherlands)

Countess Eva van Isenburg, was elected as her successor in 1486, but another of the ladies of the chapter, Amalia van Rennenberg, claimed to be have more right to the position of sovereign of the territory. Emperor Maximillian supported Eva, but Amalia and her brother Count Willem van Rennenberg attacked the Abbey, and the succession was not finally settled until 1502 with Eva as the winner.  


 

1474-97 Princess-Abbess Ursula von Silberberg of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

Member of a noble family from Steiermark.


 

Until 1474 Princess-Abbess Beatrix von Enzberg of Rottenmünster (Germany)

Reigned because of fights between different factions of the ladies of the chapter.


 

1474-90 Princess-Abbess Marguerite II van Hauchin of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

Another member of the family, Joannes Hauchinus (Hauchin) (1527-89), was the second Archbishop of Mechelen.


Fürstäbtissin Agnes von Notthafft

1475-1520 Princess-Abbess Agnes von Notthafft of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

1494 she was appointed Princess of the Empire and was granted a vote in the College of the Prelates of the Rhine, whose 17 members (Princess-Abbesses and Prince-Abbots) had a joint vote in the Council of the Princes of the Holy Roman Diet (Reichstag), where the representative of the Prelates sat on the Ecclesiastical Bench (Geistliche Bank der Reichsfürstenrat). The Reichstag frequently met in Regensburg, and from 1500 she was member of the Geistlischen Fürstenbank (Lords Spiritual) of the Bayrischer Kreis (Bavarian Circle). She was daughter of Count Albrecht von Notthafft von Wernberg (1422-68), Her niece, Kunigunde, was Lady of the Chapter and was mentioned as the "Old Lady of the Chapter" in 1560, and lived (before 1440-1580).


 

1475-95 Reigning Abbess Barbe I d'Ollenhain d'Estaimbourg of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Daughter of the Lord of Estaimbourg.


 

1476-79 Contra-Abbess Jakobe von Neuenhar  of Herford (Germany)

In oppositon to Abbess Margarete von Gleichen (1442-84). Margarete von Braunschweig-Grubenhagen had been Contra-Abbess 1442-43.


 

1477-91 Reigning Abbess Anne d'Orléans of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

Sister of Louis XII, she continued the reforms of the order initiated by Marie de Bretagne.


 

1477-86 Reigning Abbess-General María de Herrera of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Spiritual and secular ruler of more than 60 lordhips and villages in Castilla and Léon.

 

1478-82 Princess-Abbess Dorothea von Jestetten of Schänis (Switzerland)

The chapter prestented her to the Bishop of Chur for her inaguration after her election. 1479 se presented the priest Bartholome Zwingli to the church of Schänis, he was uncle of Ulrich Zwingli, the leader of the Swiss reformation. She was member of the line of Civil Servant Nobilitey (Ministerialen) von Tengen, who owned the Swiss lordship of Hedingen in the Canton of Schaffenhausen, and originated in the Baden-area on the boarder to Switzerland.


 

1479-1500 Princess-Abbess Sibylla von Paulsdorff of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

1484 the Abbey was turned into a Chapter for Noble Ladies with a vote in the College of the Prelates of the Rhine, whose 17 members (Princess-Abbesses and Prince-Abbots) had a joint vote in the Council of the Princes of the Imperial Diet, where the representative of the Prelates sat on the Ecclesiastical Bench. (Geistliche Bank der Reichsfürstenrat) and the Princess-Abbess also sat in the Bavarian Landtag. She was succeeded by her relative Agnes II von Paulsdorff.


 

1480-1509 Princess-Abbess Anna I Sauter of Heggbach (Germany)

1481 Emperor Friederich III confirmed the imperial protection of the Chapter. During her reign the Abbey-church received another altar around 1490, the chapel a side-chapel and the west wing an addition. She was born as daughter of a citizen of Pfullendorf.


 

1483-91 Princess-Abbess Barbara I Blarer von Wartensee of Schänis (Switzerland)

The chapter asked the BIshop of Chur to inagurate her after she had been elected in a unclear election (zweispältiger Wahl). Invested Johannes Meyer with the fief of the Meierhof Knohau ("verge estate") in 1483 and begun building a new church of the chapter in 1487. She belonged to one of the richest families in Switzerland, the Lords of Wartensee and had the Freedom of the Canton of Appenzell.


 

1484-94 Reigning Abbess Anna I von Hunoldstein of Herford (Germany)

Members of her family were Stewards of the Herford area.


 

1484-1508 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth III von Falkenstein of Säckingen (Germany)

received letters of protection and privilleges from Maximillian I in 1495 and and a confirmation of her jurisdiction and right of asylum. During the Swabian war between Austria and Switzerland the City of Bad Säckingen suffered badly. After the Peace of Basel in 1499,Maximilian paid a visit to the town. . She was engaged in long dispute with the canonesses and canons, who accused her of over-stepping her authority, taking important decision without consulting them. Bishop Hugo von Hohenlandenberg tried to mediate and introduce new statutes. Also the king tried to persuade her to accept the Bishop's intervension but she refused and decided to resign instead, but remained in the chapter until her death, and was succeeded by her half-sister, Anna von Falkenstein. The daughter of Freiherr Thomas von Falkenberg and Ursula von Ramstein, she lived (before 1462-1520).


Seal of the Fürstäbtissin von Frauenmünster

1484-87 Princess-Abbess Sibylla von Helfenstein of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

The first Count von Helfenstein, Helfrich is recorded as being a citizen of Rome in 225 CE. He was captain of the 5th Legion of Veterans in Germany, and Lord of the Fils River. His Legion fought against Hannibal in 210-205, hence the elephant symbol in the coat of arms. In the 800s another Count of Helfenstein was given magnificent lands in Swabia, in the South-West of Germany.


 

1485-1504 Princess-Abbess Agnes III von Anhalt-Zerbst of Gandersheim (Germany) 

In 1503 the chapter had to accept the occupation of Wilhelmsburg and the Convent of Barfüßer by the Duke of Braunschweig. She was also Abbess of Neuenheerse (1486-92) and of Kaufungen (1495-1504). She was daughter of Georg I von Anhalt-Serbst and Sophie (d. 1451), and her sister Scolastika, was Abbess of Gernrode (1465-1505). She lived (1445-1504).


 

1486-1531 Princess-Abbess Eva von Isenburg of Thorn, Lady of Thorn, Ittervoort, Grathem, Baexem, Stramproy, Ell, Haler and Molenbeerse (The Netherlands)

In the first years of her reign she was in dispute with Amalia van Rennenberg over the position of sovereign of the territory. Eva had the support of emperor Maximillian, who in 1494 and 1499 declared that the Abbey and it's lands were under the protection of the realm (Holy Roman Empire). The dispute was settled in 1502 in her favour, but she encountered many complaints over her reign, high taxes and her immoral conduct. Eva was daughter of Gerlach II von Isenburg in Grenzau and Hildgard von Sirck, Heiress of Meinsberg and Frauenberg.

 

1486-99 Reigning Abbess-General Leonor de Mendoza I of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Her family was very powerful and the many braches held many high state and ecclesiastical office - including the office of Señora Abadesaes of Las Huelgas.

 

1487-96 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth V von Wissemburg-Krenkingen
of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

She was in charge of the City of Zürich and many possessions in Uri and Schwyz.


 

1488-1505 Reigning Abbess Walburga Gretter of Gutenzell (Germany)

The chapter for noble ladies was situated in Gutenzell-Hürbel in Württemberg.


 

1489-1521 Princess-Abbess Meyna Amoena von Daun-Oberstein of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

She was the first Princess-Abbess to represent the 3 estates (Ladies of the Chapter, the male canons and the office-holders) in the local Diet (Landtag) for their approval of proposed tax-rises. As Princess of The Empire (Fürstäbtissin or Reichsäbtissin) she had a vote in the College of Prelates of the Rhine, which had one joint vote in the Council of Princes in on the Ecclesiastical Bench in the Diet of the Holy Roman Empire.


 

1489-98 Abbess Nullius Marcella Orsini of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

Member of the large Orsini-family.


 

1490-94 Princess-Abbess Guillelme de  Franckenberg of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

Also known as Wilhelmine, she was the fourth of the Mèrode-Franckenberg family to reign the territory.


 

Until 1491 Princess-Abbess Ursula II von Prassberg of Lindau  (Germany)

In 1466 the Abbess of the Ladies Chapter was granted the position of a worldly Princess of the Realm within the Holy Roman Empire. (die Würde einer weltlichen Reichsfürstin innerhalb des "Heiligen Römischen Reiches Deutscher Nation"), which is the reason why her successor was Member of the Bench of Secular Princes in the Sawbian Circle Estate. It is not known when Ursula II was elected as ruler of the territory.


 

1491-1531 Princess-Abbess Amalie von Reischach of Lindau (Germany)

When the Holy Roman Empire was divided into 6 circles (later 10), she became member of the Bench of Secular Princes of the Swabian Circle Estate (Reichskreisstandschaft), the regional assembly of the Schwabische Kreis (Together with a Prince-Abbot and the Princess-Abbess of Buchau). In 1528 the City of Lindau became Protestant, but the Chapter and the surroundings remained Catholic, and the Chapter and City of Lindau were often engaged quarrels over their territory. The "Gefürstete Äbtissin" Amaile was daughter of the Count von Reischach who was also in charge of Burg Neuhewen in Bavaria.


 

1491-1534 Reigning Abbess Renée de Bourbon of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

Possibly the greatest of the abbesses of the Chapter, both on account of the numbers of priories in which she re-established discipline, and the victory which she gained over the rebellious religious at Fontevrault by the reform, enforced with royal assistance in 1502. The result was a great influx of novices of the highest rank, including several princesses of Valois and Bourbon. At her death there were 160 nuns and 150 monks at Fontevrault. She was daughter of Jean II de Bourbon, Comte de La Marche et de Vendôme and Isabelle de Beauvau, Dame de La-Roche-Sur-Yon, and lived (1468-1534).


Abbesse Antoniette of Jouarre

1492-1515 Reigning Abbess Antoinette de Moustier of Jouarre (France)

Had already put in the lower room of the Tower the beautiful entombment the work of Michel Colombe, a famous sculptor of the time: the principal figures that have survived are presently in the Parish Church.


 

1492-93 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth IV von Goldenberg of Schänis (Switzerland)

A candidate in the 1482 elections but lost as she was not yet 30 years old at the time. She confirmed the tenantcy of Johnannes Meyer von Knonau with the Meierhof ("verge estate") in 1492. Member of a knightly family from Zürich


 

1494/94 Princess-Abbess Sussana von Sal of Schänis (Switzerland)

Appears to have died just after her election. She was daughter of Konrad von Sal, of a local knigly family


 

1494-1520 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth III van Herzelles of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

The member of a very illustrious Belgium family, which was in charge of many lordships.


 

1494-1520 Reigning Abbess Ponzetta Boniseth von Limburg-Stirum of Herford (Germany)

Became member of the Geistlischen Fürstenbank (Bench of Lords Spiritual) of the Westphalischer Kreis (Westphalian Circle) when the local assembly was created by Emperor Maximilian I in 1500. She was daughter of Count Wilhelm I von Limburg and Agnes von Limburg. Her sister Anna vas Abbess of Vilich and Borghorst. Apparently she resigned in favour of her relative, Anna, and died four years later in 1525.


 

1495-1525 Princess-Abbess Barbara II Trüllerey of Schänis (Switzerland)

Like her predecessors she confirmed Johnannes Meyer von Knonau as tenant of the Meierhof ("verge estate") in 1492.  She began rebuilding the choire of the church of Schänis. Member of a knightly family from Aaargau.


 

1495-1533 Reigning Abbess Adrienne de Noyelle of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Also known by the surname de la Chapelle, she was daughter of the Lord de Noyelle and Calonne.


 

Around 1495 Reigning Abbess Jeanne Chrétien of Faremoutiers (France)

As Abbess she held clerical and seigneurial rights, but the chapter was in decay and 3 nuns had children.


Fürstäbtissin Katharina von Frauenmünster, Frau von Zürich

1496-1524 Princess-Abbess Katharina von Zimmern of Fraumünster, Dame of Zürich (Switzerland) 

Around 13 years old when she, together with her older sister, Anna, entered the Chapter. As Fürstäbtissin was she the titular Head of the City, but most of the executive rights had already been transferred to the city. As a result of the reformation it became her task to dissolve the small state and she sold the remaining territories to the City of Zürich. She then married Eberhard von Reischach, who was killed by the battle of Kappel. They first lived in Schaffhausen and Diessenhofen until 1529 when they moved back to Zürich. Mother of one daughter, and lived (1478-1547).


 

1497 Princess-Abbess Anna IV von Werdenberg of Buchau (Germany)

Elected as the successor of her sister, Margarethe, on the 20th of February 1497, she was inaugurated at 11th of March but died already at 23rd of October the same year.


 

1497-1523 Princess-Abbess Barbara von Gundelfingen of Buchau (Germany)

One of the important rulers of the territory she was elected at the age of 25 and therefore obtained papal dispensation a few months later, because the minimum age for abbesses was 30. 1507 Mentioned in the Inventory of the Realm (Reichsmatrikel) as Princess Abbess, 1510 she was the first leader of Buchau to sign a decision of the Imperial Diet (Reichstagsabscheid). 1517 she was repsented by the Abbot of Weissenau in the Assembly of the Swabian Circle (Kreistag). She reformed the internal affairs of the Chapter and was much preoccupied with the affairs of the territory and its neighbours. The daughter of Freiherr Georg von Gundelfingen and Countess Waldburga von Fugger-Kirchberg, she lived (1473-1523).


 

1497-1506 Reigning Abbess Anna II von Stein of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

Head of the Franciscan Ladies Chapter for noble ladies and of its territories and lands in Switzerland and France.


 

1497-1505 Princess-Abbess Margaretha II von Harbach of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

Her family posessed many estates in both Niederbayern and Austria.


 

1498-1504 Reigning Abbess Barbara von Hausen of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

The chapter was a major landowner with seigneurial rights.


 

1499-1529 Reigning Abbess-General Teresa de Ayala of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Her official title was "noble Lady, the superior, prelate, and lawful administratrix in spirituals and temporals", and she reigned over vast territories in Castilla and Leon.

 

1500s Reigning Abbess Claire Motier de La Fayette of Montvilliers (France)

Daughter of VI Gilbert IV  Motier de La Fayette, Seigneur de Saint-Romain, de Hautefeuille and de Pontgibault and Isabeau. (b. 1482-?).


 

1500-? Princess-Abbess Agnes II von Paulsdorff of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

The Fürstäbtissin of the territory became a member of the Geistlischen Fürstenbank (Lords Spiritual) of the Bayrischer Kreis (Bavarian Circle) when it was formed in 1495 by Emperor Maximilian I. The function of each Circle was primarily the administration of Imperial law and the maintenance of order, but the assemblies also served to assess local opinion and to direct regional efforts as circumstances dictated. She also had the right to a seat and vote in the College of Swabian Prelates in the Imperial Diet (Reichstag), which met in Regensburg.


 

1501-05 Princesse-Abbesse Jeanne II d'Anglure de Germainvilliers of Remiremont (France)

In the beginning of the sixteenth century discipline was lax and the nuns, without the pope's consent, declared themselves canonesses. They did not take the vows and admitted only novices who could give proof of noble descent. She was Dame de Germainvilliers, and lived (1474-1505).


 

1501-35 Reigning Abbess Katharina zu Stolberg of the Chapter of Drübeck (Germany)

Mentioned as canoness at Chapter of Rohrbach the age of 6, mentioned there as Mistress of Songs (Sangmesterin) in 1491. During the last years of her tenure, the reformation influenced the life in the chapter in many ways. King Otto III confirmed the right to choose the abbess in 995, giving it a special position similar to the Chapters of the Realm of Gandersheim and Quedlinburg, but the chapter died out during upheavals of the Reformation, Peasant Wars and the Thirty Year War. By the end of the 17th century the chapter building came in the possession of the Counts of Stolberg-Wernigerode, and 1732 they founded a Protestant Ladies Chapter (evangelisches Damenstift). She lived (1463-1535).


1504-32 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth von Reuss zu Weida of Gernrode (Germany)

She was canoness at Quedlinburg when the desingnated successor to Scholastika von Anhalt, Margarethe von Warberg, refused to take up the position because of the ongoing process against the Bishop of Halberstadt because of a dam that had flodded big parts of the territory's lands. Elisabeth used funds of her own to reach a settlement where the chapter was compensated financially, but the daughter-convent of Frose had to be abandoned as it's lands was under water. In 1519 she send her preacher, Stephan Molitor to Worms, where he heard Martin Luther, in 1521 she introduced the Evangelical service and in 1523 she participated in the Reichstag von Worm, which laid the foundation of Protestant movement and she became the first Abbess of a Imperial Immediate Chapter to join protestant faith. 1525 the inhabitants of the Stift revolted against her plans to raise taxes and revenues, but she prevailed. She was daughter of Heinrich XX zu Reuss von Weida and Agnes Schenkin von Landaberg. (d. 1532).


 

1504-20 Princess-Abbess Verena vom Feld of Baindt (Germany)

Many members of her family held high ecclesiastical office throughout the years.


 

1504-31 Princess-Abbess Gertrud von Regenstein und Blankenberg of Gandersheim (Germany)

Her election was confirmed by the Pope with the provision that she had to pay a yearly pension to the "contra-abbess" Katharina von Hohenstein, but she did not fulfil this part of her obligation. Three other women claimed the office during her reign. The ducal castle was expanded in 1528 and neighbouring hoses torn down to get a free shot at the chapter.


 

1504-36 "Contra-Abbess" Katharina von Hohnstein of Gandersheim (Germany)

In 1506 a compromise was reachend with Gertrud von Regenstein-Blankenberg and she was named Dechaness and got a pension for life for resigning the post to which she had been elected, just like Gertrud. But as she did not get her pension the despute continued. But in 1518 Duke Heinrich zu Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel forced a compromise between the two competitors for the office.


 

1504-54/57 Abbess Nullius Beatrice Acquaviva d’Aragona of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

Daughter of Andrea Matteo III and his first wife, Isabella Piccolomini Todeschini. Her father was 8th Duke d Atri, Count di San Flaviano, Lord di Forcella, Sant’Omero, Torre di Tronto, Poggio Morello, Cordesca, Castelvecchio, etc. Duke di Teramo and Martina from 1481, until they were confiscated in 1496. The same year he became 15th Count di Conversano in succession to his mother Caterina Orsini del Balzo natural daughter of Giovanni Antonio Orsini, Principe di Taranto, who succeeded to the titles of Contessa di Conversano, Signora di Casamassima, Turi, Casamassima, Bitetto, Gioa, Turi e Noci in 1456, which was confirmed in 1462. Beatrice was "Badessa del monastero di Santa Maria dell’Isola a Conversano".


 

1505-07 Princess-Abbess Agnès II de Dommartin of Remiremont  (France)

At the time discipline in the chapter was lax and the nuns, without the pope's consent, declared themselves canonesses. They did not take the vows and admitted only novices who could give proof of noble descent.


 

1505-16 Reigning Abbess Walburga Buck of Gutenzell (Germany)

The Chapter was founded 1230 as a free worldly chapter for noble ladies.


 

1505-before 1557 Reigning Abbess Anna von Rotenstein zum Falken of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Reformed the territory's court system in 1533. The stewardship and Higher Jurisdiction of the vast territory was taken over by the Hohenzollern family in 1535 an Hohenzollern.


 

1506-14 Princess-Abbess Veronika von Radmannsdorf of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

Member of a noble family from Steiermark.


 

1507-20 Princesse-Abbesse Alix de Choiseul of Remiremont  (France)

Also known as Aleidis, she resigned in favour of Madeleine de Choiseul shortly before her own death.


 

1508-34 Princess-Abbess Anna IV von Falkenstein of Säckingen (Germany)

Took over after after the resignation of her half-sister, Elisabeth III. She had originally been a canoness in Buchau, where she took part in the election of Barbara von Gundelfingen as Abbess in 1497. Emperor Karl V invited her to the Diet of the Realm, the Reichstag in Worm in 1520 and confirmed the privileges of the chapter the same year. Fought against all Protestant ideas and remained within the chapter when the citizen of Säckingen and Laufenburg who occupied it and attempted to take over the administration during the peasent's war. The Parish of Hornussen and the churches of Zuzgen, Sulz and Rheinsultz were all incorporated in the chapter during her reign. She was daugter of Thomas von Falkenstin und his second wife Amalia von Winsberg, and her family originated from Solothurn in Switzerland and Breisgau.


 

1509-15 Princess-Abbess Anna II Kobold of Heggbach (Germany)

Perhaps also known as Kobodtin, she was born as daughter of a citizen of Ulm.


 Anna von der Borch

1509-12 Princess-Abbess Anna von der Borch of Kaufingen (Germany)

Called together with other nuns from Gehrden to introduce more sombre rules in Kaufingen. 1521 the Abbess of the Ritterschaftliche Stift Kaufingen in Hessen was mentioned as Imperial Prelate in an inventory of the Reichsstände. The chapter was abolished 1527/32 and incorporated into Hessen-Kassel. She was grand-daughter of Arnd von der Borch and Beate von Dreer, Heiress of Langendreer. (d. 1512).


 

1511-15 Princess-Abbess Magdalena von Anhalt of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Daughter of Fürst Albrecht IV and Countess Elisabeth von Mansfeld. She probably resigned and died later the same year.


 

1511-13 Reigning Abbess Emerita Lutschern of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

The Chapter acquired many possessions in Argau, Swabia and Alsace, but did apparently not have the dignity of Princess of the Empire (Reichsfürstin).


 

1514-23 Princess-Abbess Margaretha III von Mindorf of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

She was member of a noble family from Steiermark. During her reign the new gothic church was finished.


 

1515-26 Princess-Abbess Barbara I Ellenbog of Heggbach (Germany)

In 1525 Heggbach was raided by the peasant’s war (Bauernkrieg), which covered parts of Germany at the time. A daughter of a citizen of Augsburg, she entered the chapter in 1487 and some of her brothers were also clerics.


Fürstäbtissin Anna II zu Quedlinburg, née Gräfin von Stolberg-Weiningsrode

1515-74 Princess-Abbess Anna II zu Stolberg-Wernigerode of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Elected to the office when she was scarcely thirteen years old, she introduced Lutheranism in all the houses under her jurisdiction. The choir service in the abbey church was abandoned, and the Catholic religion wholly abrogated. The monastic offices were reduced to four, but the ancient official titles retained. Thereafter the institution continued as a Lutheran sisterhood till the secularization of the abbey in 1803. Anna II was daughter of Botho III von Stolberg and Countess Anna von Eppenstein, and lived (1504-74).


 

1515-43 Reigning Abbess Madeleine d'Orleans, batard d'Angoulême of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

Continued the renovation and rebuilding of the chapter amidst the wars raging in France. She was daughter of Comte Charles d'Angoulême et de Perigord, and she received her half-brother, King Francis I, twice at the Abbey. The year after her death, the nuns had again to leave the Abbey during the war against Charles the V. She lived (circa 1496-1543).


 

1516-28 Reigning-Abbess Katherina von Waldburg of Königsfelden (Switzerland)

The last reigning Abbess of the Ecclesiastical Territories of Königsfelden, which had vast possessions in Aargau, Swabia and Alsace. As a result of the reformation the Chapter was secularized and its possessions in Aargau were annexed to Bern and the possessions in Swabia and Alsace were sold in 1528.


 

1516-26 Princess-Abbess Walburga Buck of Gutenzell (Germany)

Since 1521, the Ladies of the Sift charged the Hofmeister with the task of taking part in the Schwäbian Circle of the Imperial Diet in their name. At the time, the Stift ruled over eight settlements with 1.189 inhabitants.


 

1520-65 Princess-Abbess Anna II von Limburg-Styrum of Herford and Gerresheim (Germany)

The Countess had been Koadjutorin 1515-20, and was the first to be appointed Princess of the Empire of the territory in 1523. She was strong opponant of the protestantism which lead to various disputes with the city of Herford, which joined protestantism in the 1520's. She was daughter of Count Adolf von Limburg and Elisabeth von Reichenstein Her sister Agnes was Abbess of Freckenhorst and Metelen, (d.1570) and Katharina was Abbess of Borghorst (d.1572). Anna resigned and lived another 20 years before her death in 1585.


 

1520-29 Princess-Abbess Anna VII Schlaibegg of Baindt (Germany)

The Chapter and City of Baindt were closely connected during the centuries, but the Peasant’s Uprising (Bauernkrieg) of 1525 the abbey was burned down.


 

1520-22 Princess-Abbess Marguerite III d'Esne of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

The issue of an ancient North-French family.


Tombstone of a Fürstäbtissin of Niedermünster, but the name and year of her death have disappeared from the wear of the centuries

1520-69 Princess-Abbess Barbara II von Aham of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Influential in Regensburg, the frequent meeting place of the imperial diet from 1532, and from 1663 to 1806 it was the permanent seat of the Imperial Diet - where she was member of the Bench of Bavarian Prelates. Barbara was member of an old Bavarian noble family.


 

1520 and 1544 Princess-Abbess Madeleine de Choiseul of Remiremont (France)

The fact that she was selected by her predecessor and not by the ladies of the chapter as the rules stipulated, caused some protests, and she resigned in favour of Nicole de Dommartin, who resigned shortly after in favour of Marguerite d'Haraucourt. This on the other hand was contested  by Marguerite de Neufchâel, who appointed Madeleine as Coadjutrice when she prevailed in 1528 after years of incertanties. After Madame de Neuchâtel's death, Madeleine was Princess-Abbess for a few months' before being succeeded by Madame d'Haraucourt.


 

1520-? Princess-Abbess Nicole de Dommartin of Remiremont (France)

Her election as successor of Madeleine de Choiseul, was contested by Marguerite de Neufchâtel, Abbess of Baume, and she soon resigned in favour of  Margureite d'Haraucourt, but Madame de Neufchâtel prevailed in 1528, and appointed Madeleine de Choiseul as coadjutrice.


Fürstabtissin Margarethe II zu Essen, geb. Gräfin von Beichlingen

1521-34 Princess-Abbess Margarethe II von Beichlingen of Essen (Germany)

During the 14th century the organisation of the Chapter and its surrounding got more character of an actual state. Margarethe II was member of the very ancient Countly family of von Beichlingen, which was one of the most important families of Thüringen.


 

1521-39  Princess-Abbess Marie von Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel of Gandersheim (Germany)

The Princess was the 9th of the 11 children of Friedrich II von Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel and Hedwig von Württemberg, and was succeeded by her 7-year-old sister. She lived (1521-39).


 

1522-49 Princess-Abbess Adrienne I de Saint Omer of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

Her family were lords of the city of St.-Omer in Belgium. 


 

1523-43 Princess-Abbess Barbara I von Spangstein of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

She was member of a noble family from Steiermark.


 

1523-40 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth von Hohengeroldseck of Buchau (Germany)

She was daughter of Gangolf von Hohengeroldseck and Kunigunde von Montfort. In 1497 she was Canoness and participated in the election of her predecessor. In 1524 the territory became a member of the Swabian League (Schwäbische Bund) and member of the Geistlischen Fürstenbank - Bench of the Lords Spiritual of the Schwäbischer Kreis (Swabian Circle) - the regional assembly. In 1529 she signed a decision of the Imperial Diet (Reichstagsabscheid), she participated in the Assembly of the Swabian Circle (Kreistag) in 1531 and in the Reichstag of Worms with the Prelates of Swabia 1535 and the following year she was represented in the Imperial Diet by the Counts of Swabia. According to the older literature she was driven out of the Chapter for a period during a peasant revolt.  She lived (before 1480-1540).


 

1525-55 Princess-Abbess Ursula II Muntprat von Spiegelberg of Schänis (Switzerland)

In 1525 the people of the Gasterland in the Schänis Area joined the reformed faith and the Chapter was briefly suspended in 1529, but after the victory of the Catholic areas around Kappel in 1531 they were forced back to the catholic faith, the confederates (eidgenossen) assembled and discussed the affairs of the Chapter in 1551 and 1552. Her family originated kn Konstantz and in 1535 she lost a court case about the inheritance from their parents to her parents Hans Heinrich Muntprat von Spiegelberg.


 

1525-29 Reigning Abbess-General Leonor de Sosa de Mendoza of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

The Abbess of the Chapter held her own courts, granted letters dismissorial for ordination, and issued licenses authorizing priests, within the limits of her abbatial jurisdiction, to hear confessions, to preach, and to engage in the cure of souls. She was privileged also to confirm Abbesses, to impose censures, and to convoke synods.

 

1526-32 Princess-Abbess Walpurgis Bitterler of Heggbach (Germany)

She was member of a Noble family from Basel in Switzerland and died of breast cancer.


 

1526-28 Princess-Abbess Barbara von Stottingen of Gutenzell (Germany)

In 1526 the peasants attacked the Chapter and looted the rooms and the same year the citizen of Biberach wanted to introduce the reformation but did not succeed.


 

1528-42 Princess-Abbess Magdalena von Freyberg of Gutenzell (Germany)

The Chapter was founded in 1230 and started the process towards independence as a princely territory in the Holy Roman Empire in 1417.


 

1528-44 Princess-Abbess Marguerite III de Neufchatel of Remiremont  (France)

Since 1520 she had contested the appointment of Madeleine de Choiseul, the election of Nicole de Dommartin and her resignation in favour of Marguerite d'Haraucurt and in 1528 she finally gained the upper hand, and then appointed Madeleine de Choiseul as coadjutice. Marguerite's  sister, Bonne, succeeded their brother, Thibaut XI, as Dame de Neufchatel in 1500/04 and lived until 1515. Her younger sister, Elizabeth de Neufchatel was Dame de Chatel-sur-Moselle, etc, They were children of Claude, Lord de Neufchatel, etc, Vicomte de Baume, Governor of Luxembourg and Burgundy, Marshall of Burgundy, etc. and Bonne van Bolchen. Marguerite lived (circa 1480-1544).


 

1529-35 Princess-Abbess Margaretha IV Brock of Baindt (Germany)

During heir tenure, the church and chapter were renewed.


 

1529-36 Reigning Abbess-General Leonor Sarmiento of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

The supreme head of the congregation constisting of the monastaries of  Torquemada, Gradefes, Carrizo, Perales, San Andrés de Arroyo, Santa Maria de Otero, Cañas y Fuencaliente, Villamayor de los Montes, Renuncio, Barría y Avia and the temporal territory of Vileña.


 

1531-78 Princess-Abbess Katharina I von Bodman of Lindau   (Germany)

The Fürstäbtissin of the Eccleastical Territory had been member of the Geistlischen Fürstenbank (Bench of Lords Spiritual) of the Schwäbischer Kreis (Swabian Circle) the local Assembly since 1500. Her family was Lords (Freiherren) of Bodman, Espasingen, Wahlwies, Freudental, Langenrain and Liggeringen.


 

1531-77 Princess-Abbess Margaretha IV van Brederode of Thorn, Lady of Thorn, Ittervoort, Grathem, Baexem, Stramproy, Ell, Haler and Molenbeerse (The Netherlands)

Obtained papal dispensation since she was only 17 at the time of her election. She was daughter of Waleram II, Lord of Brederode and Vianden, Burgrave van Utrecht and Anna von Neuenahr. The abbesses no longer used the nun's habit and in 1544 and 1549 emperor Karl V confirmed, that Thorn was a separate entity outside the Netherlands, and also declared that the Abbey belonged to the Westphalian Circle within the Diet of the Realm. Margaretha seems to have been the first to use the right of the principality to make it's own money - and she was accused of using base metal in the coins.


 

1532-48 Princess-Abbess Anna I Reuss von Plauen of Gernrode (Germany)

The chapter was mismanaged during her reign, it was marked by internal disputes and the Archbishops of Magdeburg and Bishops of Halberstadt perused a policy of acquiring the lands of the Stift. 1544 the possessions of the once so powerful and rich community had fallen back to 5 villages and a limited amount of land. In 1549 she gave the city of Gernrode the right of "lower court" 10 years after it had required the position of a town. She was daughter of Heinrich III Reuβ von Plauen, Burgrave von Meiβen, Landvogt von Niederlausitz and Barbara von Anhalt, and lived (1506-48).


 

1532-39 Princess-Abbess Maria zu Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel of Gandersheim (Germany)

Because of the dispute following the dubble-election of two Abbesses in 1504, her father was able to have her appointed without an election even though she was a minor and had been K She newer set foot in the chapter. The administration was taken over by Ducal civil servants. She lived (1527-39).


 

1532-39 Princess-Abbess Margaretha I Hauptmann of Heggbach (Germany)

Also known as Margarethe Hauptmannin, she initiated extensive renovations of the central buildings of the chapter. Her father, Hans Hauptmann, was Secretary of the Abbey of Salem, a brother Priest in Griesingen and another brother citizen of Lindau.

?

 

1533-36 Princess-Abbess Katharina II von Redwitz of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

It is not certain whom she was elected to succeed.


 

1533-45 Reigning Abbess Antoniette I de Noyelle of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Succeeded her relative, Adrienne de Noyelle.


 

1534-51 Princess-Abbess Sibylla von Montfort-Rotenfels of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

As the territory got more character of an actual state, three estates developed like in other German States, with the Ladies of the Chapter constituting the First Estate. The Second Estate was the Male Canons in the Male Chapter and the Third Estate was constituted by the Office-Holders (Ministerials) of the Chapter and State, who were of low nobility. The three estates were constituted the members of the Landtag (Local Diet) Sibylla was daughter of Count Hugo von Montfort and Countess Anna von Zweibrücken, and her sister; Margarete II was abbess of Buchau (1540-56/59).


 

1534-43 Princess-Abbess Kunigunde II von Geroldseck und Sulz of Säckingen (Germany)

Kellerin (In charge of the winery) when the Election Chief appointed by the Bishop of Konstantz proclaimed her the winner of an election, during which the different factions within the chapter asked their relatives for assistance, the government of Vorderösterreich and the Bishop tried to influence the result. The disputes within the chapter continued during her reign. She was daugter of Gangolf von Hohengeroldseck und Sulz, Lord of Hohengeroldseck, Schenkelzele and Countes Kunigund von Montford. (d. 1543).


1534-75 Reigning Abbess Louise I de Bourbon of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

She was a woman of sincere but gloomy piety, and during her tenure the order suffered many losses at the hands of the Protestants, who even besieged the great abbey itself, though without success; many nuns apostatized, but twelve more houses were reformed. She was daughter of Marie de Luxembourg, Sovereign Countess of Saint Pôl, Ligny, de Marle, Soissons and Conversano, Sovereign Princess of Condé-en-Brie etc. (1472-82-1546) and François de Bourbon, Count of Vendôme.


 

1535-83 Princess-Abbess Anna VIII Wittmeyer of Baindt (Germany)

In 1560 the church of the chapter got a new arch in the late gothic style, and in 1573 the General Abbott Nicholas I Bucherat demanded that the chapter and its rules were reformed.


 

1536-42 Princess-Abbess Wandula von Schaumberg of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

It is not certain who succeeded her, but Barbara II von Sandizell reigned until 1564.


 

1536-39 and 1543-55 Reigning  Abbess-General Isabel de Navarra y Mendoza  of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

She was member of a sideline of the royal family of Navarra.

1539-43 Reigning Abbess-General María Esperanza de Aragón y Larrea of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Natural daughter of Fernando I the Catholic - the husband of Isabel I de Castilla. She lived (1477-1543).

 

1539-47  Princess-Abbess Klara von Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel of Gandersheim (Germany)

In 1542, during her tenure in office, the Sclamalkaldic League forcibly introduced Protestantism to the area. In 1547 her father, Duke Heinrich of Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel, reintroduced the catholic faith, but only a few years later Lutheranism was permanently introduced by her brother, Duke Julius of Braunschweig (1528-1589). She was appointed in succession to her sister, Maria, who was Fürstäbtissin 1532-39. Klara or Clara resigned in order to marry Duke Philipp II von Graunswheig-Grubenhagen (d. 1596). She lived (1532-95).


 

1539-53 Princess-Abbess Veronica Berenike Krel of Heggbach (Germany)

Her surname might also have been Kröhl or in an older version, Kröllin. In August 1546 an Evangelical ordinance banns the ladies of the chapter to pray in the choir, to celebrate mass and take communion, but in December the Chapter is granted freedom of religion. She lived (1487-1559).


 

1540-56 Princess-Abbess Margarethe II von Montfort of Buchau (Germany)

At the time of her election, the economic situation of the convent was very bad, and she was preoccupied with the restoration. At the Assembly of the Swabian Circle (Kreistag) in 1542, she voted just after the Prelates and the Abbess of Rottenmünster. Two years later she was represented by Mr. Weingarten and Mr. Marchtal. The same year she signed a decision of the Imperial Diet (Reichstagsabscheid) and in 1555 she was represented in the Imperial Diet by the Counts of Swabia. She was daughter of Count Hugo von Montfort and Anna von Zweibrücken, and her sister, Sibylle, had been Princess-Abbess of Essen since 1533.


 

1540-49 Princesse-Abbesse Marguerite I de Neufchâtel of Remiremont (France)

Her sister, Bonne succeeded their brother, Thibaut XI, as Dame de Neufchatel in 1500/04 and lived until 1515. Her younger sister, Elizabeth de Neufchatel was Dame de Chatel-sur-Moselle, etc. They were children of Claude, Lord de Neufchatel, etc, Vicomte de Baume, Governor of Luxembourg and Burgundy, Marshall of Burgundy, etc. and Bonne van Bolchen. Marguerite lived (circa 1480-1549).


 

1542-67 Princess-Abbess Maria von Hohenlandenberg of Gutenzell (Germany)

The convent was founded in 1230, started the process of independence in 1417 and in around 1521 the Abbess achieved the rank of Princess of the Realm.


 

1543-66 Princess-Abbess Amalia von Leisser of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

Member of a noble family.


 

1543-49 Princess-Abbess Magdalena von Hausen of Säckingen (Germany)

The last known decree from her is from 1547 and according to the legend she tried to eleope in order to marry Thomas Leimer, former Diacon of Schpfheim, but instead she was kept prisoner and resigned 1549, but remained in the chapter until she bought her freedom in 1558 and moved to Basel. She had entered the chapter together with her sister Genoveva in 1514 and lost her position temporarily in 1524 because of her Protestant sympaties. Daughter of Sixt von Hausen and Sigone von Freiberg.


 

1543-59 Reigning Abbess Louise de Longwy-Givny of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

Succeeded her aunt, Madeleine d'Orléans. Daughter of Jean de Longwy-Givny, Seigneur de Givny etc. and Jeanne d'Orléans, the daughter of Charles d'Angoulême and Jeanne de Polignac.


 

1544-68 Princesse-Abbesse Marguerite IV d'Haraucourt dite d'Ubexy of Remiremont (France)

Around 1520 Madeleine de Choiseul had resigned as Princess-Abbess in her favour, but Marguerite de Neufchâtel prevailed in the powerstruggle in 1528. After her death in 1544 she was succeeded by Madame de Choiseul, who was in office for a few months before she died. Marguerite d'Haraucourt was also known by the surname of d'Ubex because her family owned the castle Ubexy, which had been inherited by Elisabeth d'Haraucourt in 1543, the wife of Nicolas du Châtelet, who had no children. She was the 42nd Abbess of the Chapter. In 1565 the war of "panonceaux" broke out between Duke Charles III of Lorraine and the ladies of the chapter, who used the Imperial Eagles in the city shield to show their independence. Charles profited by the fact that Emperor Maximillan II was tied up in Hungary and used force to have his sovereignty recognised. 


 

1545-68 Reigning Abbess Marie II de Saint-Omer, dite de Morbecque of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Daughter of the Lord of Ebblinghem.


 

1547-77 Princess-Abbess Magdalena von Chlum of Gandersheim (Germany)

During the Schmalkaldian war, she was she only canoness who remained in the chapter, and Duke Heinrich von Brauschweig had her appointed as head of the territory. In 1568 the church service became protestant but she remained a Catholic. Duke Julius von Braunschweig occupied the territory in 1575 and she was taken prisoner. She was member of a Bohemian noble family.


 

1548-58 Princess-Abbess Anna II von Kittlitz of Gernrode (Germany)

The Lords of Kittlitz had their lands in Sachsen and Slesia.


 

1548-49 Princess-Abbesse Adrienne I de Morbecq of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

As ruler of the territory she was Princess of the Empire and Head of a number of Lordships around Nivelles.


 

1549-61 Princess-Abbess Marguerite IV d'Estourmel of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

She was member of a French noble family.


 

1550/55-71 Princess-Abbess Agathe Heggenzer von Wassersteltz Säckingen (Germany)

After the resignation of Fürstäbtissin Magdalene no canonisses remained in the chapter and the "grand verge" (Grossmeier) Hans Jakob von Schönau acted as administrator, but the Austrian Government and Bishop Christoph Metzler of Konstantz asked the 3 canons to elect an Abbess. At the time she was a nun at St. Katharinental bei Diessehhof and she is known to have been in Säckingen at lest 1552 together with another nun from her original convent but she did not take office until 1555. She restored the chapter and is seen as it's second founder, brought it back on its feet economically, and restored the church. The water supply was renewed and several treaties were made between the Chapter and the city of Säckingen.. She also introduced new and more sombre status and reinstated the secular authority of the chapter which the Grossmeier had "ursurped" during the interregnum. She was daughter of Landvogt Johan Melchior Heggenzer.


 

1551-60 Princess-Abbess Katharina II von Tecklenburg of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

During her tenure in office, the protestant movement became stronger. 1555 was the year of the Augsburg Peace, where it was made clear that the subjects had to have the same faith as their sovereign. In Essen the citizens were mainly protestant, but Katharina remained catholic, and the city council saw this as a way to free the city from the dominance of the Abbess, and for a period they were successful. Daughter of Otto IX von Tecklenburg and Irmgard von Cuyk-Rietberg. Her older sister, Jakobäa was Abbess of Vreden (1533-1563), and the younger Irmgard Abbess of Quernheim since 1534. Their niece Anna, was heiress of  Tecklenburg und Rheda (1527-82) and married to Everwin III von Götterswick Count of Bentheim-Steinfurt. Katharina lived (1517-60).


 

1553-59 Princess-Abbess Ursula I Schad of Heggbach (Germany)

Prioress and Second in Command 1540-53 until her election as ruler of the territory. She resigned because of bad health, and died later the same year.


 

1554-56 Abbess Nullius Caterina Acquaviva of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

Member of the Countly Family of Conversano and other territories in Puglia in the South of Italy at the time in the Kingdom of Napoli.


 

1555-75 Princess-Abbess Anna III von Mosheim of Schänis (Switzerland)

Donated a window with a religious motive to the Hospital of Glarus in 1558/60 (Stiftet ein Fenster ins Spital von Glarus). She was daughter of Junker Hans von Mosheim and Anna Meiss, of Zürich.


 

1555-66 Reigning  Abbess-General Catalina Sarmiento of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

As one of the few abbesses in the history of the Catholic church, the Señora Abadesa of Las Huelgas de Burgos held quasi Episcopal powers.              

 

1556-94 Princess-Abbess Maria Jacoba von Schwarzenberg of Buchau (Germany)

The Freiin (Baroness) was in dispute with the bishop of Konstanz and strongly maintained her own rights as ecclesiastical leader and the position of her territory. She was also promoter of religious and cultural affairs. In 1559 she signed a decision of the Imperial Diet (Reichstagsabscheid), participated in the the Assembly of the Swabian Circle (Kreistag) 1569, represented by the Count of Fürstenberg in the Imperial Diet 1572 and 1576, and by the Truchess von Waldburg in 1577. She was daughter of Freiherr Christoph and Eva von Montfort, and lived (1515-94).


 

1557 Abbess Nullius Barbara Acquaviva d’Aragona of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

Daughter of Andrea Matteo III Acquaviva d’Aragona, Duke of Atri etc. (1457-1529),  and probably his second wife Caterina della Ratta, Countess di Caserta, Alessano e Sant’Agata (from 1488). Her italian title was Badessa di Santa Maria dell’Isola a Conversano dal 1558


 

1557 Reigning Abbess Magdalena von Reischach of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

Only reigned for a few months.


 

1557-68 Reigning Abbess Margrethe von Reischach von Hohenstofffeln of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

The chapter was a major landowner and also held lower jurisdiction in a number of surrounding villages.


 

1558-64 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth II von Gleichen of Gernrode (Germany)

Several members of her family - of the Counts of Gleichen - were Princess-Abbesses or held other ecclesiastical offices.


 

1559-89 Princess-Abbess Lucia Hildebrand of Heggbach (Germany)

A former Prioress, she took over enormous depths during a period of bad harvests, hard winters, wet summers. Epidemics of plague in 1564, 1572/73, 1574, 1579 and 1589 and on top of it all heavy "turk taxes". But her bad handling of the economy made the situation worse and the existence of the whole territory was endangered, and she had to resign from her post for the same reason. She lived (1523-1605).


 

1560-61 Princess-Abbess Maria von Spiegelberg of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

The counts of Spiegelberg had ruled their Small County, cantered around Coppenbrüg since around 1280. In 1494 they inherited the County of Pyrmont, but in 1557 the family died out in the male line. The fief was inherited by Braunschweig-Calenberg, but with the condition that the sovereignty was inherited in the female line to a sideline of the family of Lippe. In 1485 the county was inherited by the counts of Gleichen and in 1631 by Nassau-Oranje, who sold it to Hannover in 1819.


Around 1560 Princess-Abbess Ludmilla de Bliziva of the Royal Chapter St. Georg at the  Hradschin in Prague  (Czech Republic)
Also known as von Bliziwa.

 

1561-75 Princess-Abbess Irmgard III von Diepholtz of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

Pröbstin - or second ranking - in the Chapter until her election as its sovereign. Like Maria von Spiegelberg, she was catholic and that caused problems with the predominantly protestant City of Essen. In 1568 Irmgard applied to the imperial supreme court to resolve a wider, century-old dispute between the Abbesses and the Essen citizenry over the rights and responsibilities of the citizens. The judgement, which took 102 years to deliver, was ambiguous. The Abbess was declared the "sole authority and rightful princess of the state", to whom the citizens owed obedience as "subjects and members of the state". At the same time however the city was defined as a "civitas mixta" or free city of the German Empire, and therefore not a county, which would have meant complete subjugation to the aristocracy, nor a municipality without jurisdiction or statutory power. This judgement gave rise to continuing legal disputes, which carried on until 1803, when the state was finally secularised. Irmgard also took a keen interest in coal mining.


 

Until 1561 Reigning Abbess Antonie de Joinville of Faremoutiers (France)

Following the concordat de Bolgone, signed in 1516 between François I and Pope Léon X, the abbesses were named by the king. Her sister, Renée, was Abbess of St. Pierre until her death in 1602. She lived (1531-61).


Until 1564 Princess-Abbess Barbara II von Sandizell of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Her relative, Moritz was Prince-Bishop of Freising until he resigned in 1566.


 

1564-79 Princess-Abbess Barbara III Ratzin of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

1219 the reichsunmittelbare convent came under direct Papal protection and in 1315 Emperor Ludwig the Bavarian appointed the Abbess as Princess of the Realm. Heinrich II granted the convent immunity and during the reign of Konrad II, the abbess even received a royal sceptre. 1484 it was turned into a noble Ladies Chapter (Gräflicher Damenstift) with a seat and vote in the Diet of the Realm and the Princess-Abbess also sat on the Bayrischen Kreis (Bavarian Circle) in 1500, which was the local assembly.


 

1564-70 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth III von Anhalt-Zerbst of Gernrode (Germany)

As Fürstäbtissin she was member of the Upper Saxon Circle Estate (Reichskreisstandschaft), the regional assembly Member of the Upper Saxon Circle Estate (Reichskreisstandschaft), the regional assembly. She was also member of the College of the Prelates of the Rhine, whose 17 members (Princess-Abbesses and Prince-Abbots) had a joint vote in the Council of the Princes of the Imperial Diet, where the representative of the Prelates sat on the Ecclesiastical Bench. She resigned in order to marry Count Wolfgang II von Barby. She was the youngest daughter of Johann von Anhalt-Zerbst and Margrethe von Brandenburg, was succeeded by her niece, Anne Marie von Anhalt, and lived (1545-74).


 

1564/65-82 Abbess with the authority of a County Sheriff Margrethe Urne of the Chapter and Town of Maribo and surroundings (Denmark)

Entered the chapter in 1542 and "reigned as Abbess ably and well like no other abbess before or after her". There were complaints that the chapter was opened to anyone who wanted to visit, the canonesses fought openly and refused to comply with the rule or the abbess, many were drunk on a regular basis, drinking up the fourteen barrels of beer received each year as rent and more. It was also asserted that women's rooms were used as brothels for any young nobleman who wandered inside. She was daughter of Knud Urne til Søgård, and (d. 1582).


 

1565-75 Princess-Abbess Margarethe II zur Lippe of Herford (Germany)

Margarethe Gräfin zur Lippe was also Abbess of Freckenhorst 1570, and of Borghorst 1572. She introduced the reformation after years of oppostion by her predecessor, whereafter Herford became a secular protestant Stift - the only one to be reformed. The other Protestant Chapters were Lutheran. She was daughter of Simon V, Count of Noble Lord zur Lippe and Magdalene von Mansfeld. Her sister, Magdalene was sovereign from 1586. She lived (1525-78).


Abbess Charlotte of Jouarre

1565-71 Reigning Abbess Charlotte de Bourbon-Montpensier of the Royal Abbey of Jouarre (France)

Daughter of Louis III de Montpensier et de Jacqueline de Longwy. With the help of Queen Jeanne III de Navarre, she found refuge innHeidelberg and married Willem van Oranje-Nassau, Stadtholder of the Netherlands and had 6 daughters of whom Louise-Juliana, Catharina Belgica and Charlotte-Brabantine became regents after their husband's deaths, and Charlotte Flandrina (1579-1640) became Abbess de Poitiers. She lived (1546-82). 


 

1566-73 Princess-Abbess Barbara II von Liechtenstein-Murau of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

Possibly daughter of Otto von Liechtenstein-Murau (d. 1564) and Benigna von Liechtenstein (of the later Princes of Liechtenstein) (d. 1579). Her parents were not related.


 

1566-70 Reigning Abbess-General Inés Manrique de Lara y Castro of the Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Daughter of Pedro Manrique de Lara y Sandoval, Count de Treviño, Duke de Nájera, Señor de Amusco, Navarrete etc., Chief Treasurer of Vizcaya, Chief Notary of the Kingdom of León, Capitain General of the fronteres of Aragón, Navarra and Jaén and the army of Navarra and Guiomar de Castro

1567-1610 Princess-Abbess Maria Segesser von Brunegg of Gutenzell (Germany)

She is considered one of the most important rulers of the territory. During the visitation in 1574, by the Abbot of Bodenseezisterze, who was in charge of the clerical affairs and responsible for the economic affairs, the 47 Heggbachers and other neighbouring convents were praised for their piety and it lasted another 50 years before the convent reforms were introduced. Another version of her name is Maria von Segesser aus Brunegg.

1567-90 Royal Abbess Magdalena von Habsburg of the Royal Chapter of Hall in Tirol (Königliches Damenstift Hall) (Austria-Hungary)

She founded the royal Chapter for royal and noble ladies that existed until 1783. She lived there with her two sisters, Margaretha and Helena. Daughter of Emperor Ferdinand I and Anna of Hungary, she lived (1532-90)

1568-80 Princess-Abbess Renée de Dinteville of Remiremont (France)

Coadjutrice 1565-68 and elected Abbess because duke Charles III of Lorraine preferred an Abbess from the local nobility of the Duchy. 1579 was forced to accept Barbe de Salm as Coadjutrice of the Chapter. She was the issue of a noble family of high-ranking courtiers. 


 

1568-78 Reigning Abbess Marie III de de Bernemiscourt of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Daughter of Lord of Thieuloye and Lievin.


 

1568-92 Reigning Abbess Margarethe von Goeberg of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

The General of the Order of the Cisterciensers (Ordensgeneral) visited the chapter in 1573.


Tombstone of a Fürstäbtissin of Niedermünster, but the name and year of her death have disappeared from the wear of the centuries

1569-98 Princess-Abbess Anna II von Kirmbreith of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

As Reichsprältin (Imperial Prelate), the Fürstäbtissin had a vote in the College of the Prelates of the Rhine, whose 17 members (Princess-Abbesses and Prince-Abbots) had a joint vote in the Council of the Princes of the Holy Roman Diet (Reichstag), where the representative of the Prelates sat on the Ecclesiastical Bench. (Geistliche Bank der Reichsfürstenrat) and she was also member of the Geistlischen Fürstenbank (Lords Spiritual) of the Bavarian Circle (Bayrischer Kreis).

 

1569-circa 1601 Princess-Abbess Marie I van Hoensbroek of Nivelles, Dame Temporaire and Spirituelle of Nivelles (Belgium)

One of her ancestors, Knight Herman Hoen, was appointed Lord van Hoensbroek by Duchess Johanna van Brabant in 1388 for his service at war. The family was later given the title of Count.


 

1569 Abbess Nullius Isabella II Acquaviva d’Aragona of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

The list of Abbesses of the chapter is not complete and there are at least two different versions of the chronology of the reign of the Abbesses, and in an alternative list, she appears as ruler in 1621. She was another member of the family of the Counts of Conversano.


 

1570-77 Princess-Abbess Anne Marie von Anhalt of Gernrode (Germany)

Also known as Anna Maria von Anhalt-Bernburg-Zerbst, she succeeded her aunt as the first of four sisters to occupy the now titular dignity as Fürstäbtissin as the territory had in reality been incorporated into the Principality of Anhalt. She resigned in order to marry Duke Joachim Friederich Schlesien, Duke of Liegnitz, Brieg and Wohlau (1550-1602), and beca,e mother of 6 children. She was daughter of Prince Joachim Ernst von Anhalt and Eleonore von Württemberg, and lived (1551-1605).


 

1570-81 Reigning Abbess-General Francisca Manrique de Lara y Vaencia of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Daughter of Fadrique Manrique de Lara y Manrique de Lara, Mariscal de Castilla, Señor de Fueguinaldo etc. and doña Antonia de Valencia, Señora of the family which originated from the Kingdom of Castilla.

 

1571-1600 Princess-Abbess Anna Jakobäa von Sulzbach of Säckingen (Germany)

As the only canoness remaining in the Chapter, she was elected by the canons. Expanded the possessions of the chapter and continued the building projects of her predecessor and 1575 the new residence of the chapter (Stiftsgebäude) was finished. The year before Ursula Giel had entered the chapter and was soon after followed by 2 other ladies. She temporary sought refuge for the plague in 1593. Also known as Maria Jacobe, she lived (1538-1600).


Abbess Jehanne I of Jouarre

1572-1624 Reigning Abbess Jehanne I de Bourbon of Jouarre (France)

Her sister Charlotte been Abbess before her but became a protestant and later married Willem van Oranje-Nassau, Stadtholder of the Netherlands. Another sister was Louise, Abbess of Faremoutier, (1548-86). They were Duc Louis II de Bourbon "le Bon" de Montpensier, etc, and his first wife Jacqueline de Longwy, Countess de Bar sur Seine. She lived (1541-1624).


 

1573-76 Princess-Abbess Anna II von Harrach of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)

Possibly daughter of Count Leonhard III von Harrach and Barbara von Gleinitz and widow of Leonhard von Sinzendorf (1506-48). She lived (1510-76).


Fürstäbtissin Elisabeth II zu Quedlinburg, née Gräfin zu Reinstein (Regenstein)

1574-84 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth II zu Regenstein of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Daughter of Count Ulrich VI of Regenstein (Reinstein) and Countess Magdalena von Stolberg.


 

1575-78 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth VI von Manderscheid-Blankenheim-Gerolstein of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

All the Ladies of the Chapter had the right to participate in the Landtag of the Ecclesiastical Territory of Essen, which met at least once a year, but they were often represented by the Secretary of the Chapter or other office-holders. The Landtag met in the Grand Hall of the Convent. Elisabeth IV held close connections with her brother, Count Hermann, she resigned in order to marry Count Wirich von Daun-Falkenstein. Her sister, Margaretha, was Princess-Abbess of Eltern and Vreden until her death in 1602. Elisabeth was daughter of Count Arnold and Margaretha von Wied, and lived (1544-86).


 

1575-86 Princess-Abbess Felicitas I von Eberstein of Herford (Germany)

At this time the line of Hereditary Stewarts, the Lords von Helfenstein, was dying out. The last Lord, Johann XIV, had one daughter, Wilhelmina, who married Otto von Rolshausen, who was granted the Lordship of Mühlbach by Felicitas Countess von Eberstein.


 

1575-87 Princess-Abbess Barbara III Blarer von Wartensee of Schänis (Switzerland)

Reached a compromise with the villages in Gasterland and Kerenzen about the tithe. Her brother Johann Jakob was Provost of Bischofzel and another relative of hers, Jakob Christian Blarer von Wartensee, was Bishop of Basel - he lived (1542-1608). Her family had owned the Borough of Wartensee and in 1405 they got the "Landrecht" of the Appenzelle-Canton and stayed out of the Appenzeller-wars. The daughter of Kasper, Chief steward of Arbon and Siguna von Diesbach, and lived (1536-87).


 

1575-1611 Reigning Abbess Eléonore III de Bourbon of the Royal Abbey of Fontevraud (France)

The French Princess had great influence with her nephew, King Henri IV of France, and her affection for him was so great that, towards the end of her life, when he was assassinated, her nuns dared not tell her lest the shock should be too great. She was daughter of Duc Charles IV de Vendôme and Françoise d'Alencon, Duchesss de Beaumont. Her brother, Duc Antoine de Vendôme, was married to Juanna III of Navarra and Titular King of Navarre (1555-62) - the parents of Henri IV - and 3 of her sisters were also Abbesses, Madeleine (1521-61) in Poitiers, Catherine in Notre Dame de Soissons and Renée (1527-83) in Chelles. Eleonore lived (1532-1611).


1576-1602 Princess-Abbess Florentina von Putterer of Göss bei Leoben (Austria)
The chapter of canonisses (Kanonissen or Chorfrauenstift) and it was founded around 1000 by Countess Palatine Adala of Bavaria. The abbot or provost administered the estates of the clerical ladies, arranged the statues and appointed the prioress. In 1020 her grandchild, Aribo III handed it over to the protection of Emperor Heinrich II, who granted it immunity and raised it to the status of an Chapter of the Realm - or Imperial Immediacy (reichsunmittelbaren Abtei) - the only one in Austria - and removed the Chapter from the influence of the Metropolits of Salzburg.

 

1577-79 Princess-Abbess Josina I von Manderscheid-Blankenheim und Gerolstein of Thorn, Lady of Thorn, Ittervoort, Grathem, Baexem, Stramproy, Ell, Haler and Molenbeerse (The Netherlands)

At the elections for the successor of Margaretha von Brederode, Josina von der Marck got the most votes, but since she was not yet 30 Josina von Manderscheid took over the position of ruler of the territory. After a few years she fell seriously ill and nominated Josina v.d. Marck as her successor. She was daughter of Gerhard and Franziska von Montfort. Her sister Helena was a nun until she left the Chapter in order to marry Count Reinhard von Brederode. Josina lived (1537-79).


Sibylla von Gernrode

1577-81 Princess-Abbess Sibylle von Anhalt of Gernrode and Frose (Germany)

Even though she was still a minor, her father, Joachim Ernst von Anhalt, forced through her election as successor of her sister, Anne Marie as titular sovereign of the territory. It was confirmed by Emperor Rudolf II the same year. She only issued one decree in which she gave some land to the widow of Stefan Molitor the first evangelican Superintendent of the chapter.  When she resigned to marry Duke Freiderich von Württemberg (1557-1616), she was succeeded by another sister, Agnes Hedwig. After her husband's death she was  Reigning Dowager Lady of Leonberg 1601-14. She was mother of 14 children, and lived (1564-1614).


 

1577-89 Princess-Abbess Margarethe II. von Chlum of Gandersheim (Germany)

Elected as successor of her sister, Magdalene, but after the Duke of Braunchweig occupied the territory and installed his daughter, Elisabeth zu Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel, as de-facto as ruler. Margarethe had to flee to Neuenheerse and was only able to return after the second contra-abbess Margarete von Warberg died in 1587.


Elizabeth von Gandesheim

1578-82 "Titular" Contra Abbess Elisabeth zu Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel of Gandersheim (Germany)

After Margareta von Chlum was elected as Princess-Abbess, her father, Duke Julius, occupied and claimed that she was the real ruler, and Margareta had to flee. Margarete von Warberg was in power until 1587, and only then Margareta II was able to return. Her older sister, Sophia-Hedwig, reigned her dowries in Pommern from 1677 and their younger sister, Dorothea Auguste was Princess-Abbess of Gandersheim from 1611. In 1583 she married Count Adolf XIII. von Holstein-Schauenburg (1547–1601) and had one son, Julius von Holstein-Schauenburg (1585–1601). In 1604 she married Duke Christoph von Braunschweig-Harburg (1570–1606). She lived (1677-1618).


 

1578-88 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth VII von Sayn of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

During her reign "only" 14 witch-processes were conducted, only a fraction of the processes in the neighbouring countries. Elisabeth VII was daughter of Count Adolf of Sayn and Maria von Mansfeld. Her brother's daughter Anna Elisabeth (1572-1608) inherited the county from her uncle in 1606. Anna Elisabeth was married to Count Wilhelm zu Sayn and Wittgenstein (d. 1623). 


 

1578-1614 Princess-Abbess Barbara von Breiten-Landenberg of Lindau (Germany)

Member of an old countly family.


Marie-Madeleine de Rebstock

Around 1578-circa 1606 Princess-Abbess Marie-Madeleine de Rebstock of the Royal Abbey of Andlau, Lady of Wagenbourg and Marlenheim etc. (France)

Conferred the fief of Wangenbourg at at her brother, Jean-Gabriel Rebstock, in 1606.


 

1578-1600 Reigning Abbess Antoniette II de Wissocoq of Bourbourg, Lady of Oxelaere, Noordpeene, Faumont and Coutiches (France)

Daughter of the Lord of Bomy.


1579-1604 Princess-Abbess Josina II von der Marck of Thorn, Lady of Thorn, Ittervoort, Grathem, Baexem, Stramproy, Ell, Haler and Molenbeerse (The Netherlands)

Had been elected Abbess already in 1577, but since she was not yet 30, she had to step aside for Josina von Manderscheid. In 1586 she obtained a seat and voting right in the Westphalian Circle of the Diet of the Realm and the following year she participated in the Assembly in person. But Josina was the "black sheep" among the Princess-abbesses, and was, among other things, accused of printing false money. She was daughter of Johann II von der Marck and Margareta van Wassenaer, and was succeeded by her sister, Anna, and lived (1546-1604).


 

1579-94 Princess-Abbess Magdalena von Gleissenthal of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

1219 the reichsunmittelbare Chapter came under direct Papal protection and in 1315 Emperor Ludwig the Bavarian appointed the Abbess as Princess of the Realm. Heinrich II granted the Chapter immunity and during Konrad II, the abbess even received a royal sceptre. 1484 the Abbey was turned into a Chapter for Noble Ladies, with a vote in the College of the Prelates of the Rhine, whose 17 members (Princess-Abbesses and Prince-Abbots), which had a joint vote in the Council of the Princes of the Imperial Diet, where the representative of the Prelates sat on the Ecclesiastical Bench. (Geistliche Bank der Reichsfürstenrat). The Fürstabtissin also sat on the Bavarian Landtag and from 1495/1500 member of the Geistlischen Fürstenbank (Lords Spiritual) of the Bayrischer Kreis (Bavarian Circle) and in 1521 mentioned as Reichsprälatin (Imperial Prelate) in an inventory of the Reichsstände - the territories of the Realm.


 

1579-83 Reigning Abbess Renée de Bourbon de Vendôme of Chelles (France)

The daughter of Charles de Bourbon, duc de Vendôme et de Françoise d'Alençon de Beaumont, she lived (1527-83).


1580-1602 Princess-Abbess Barbe de Salm of Remiremont, Dame of St. Pierre and Metz etc. (France)

The Duke of Lorraine forced her predecessor to accept her as Coadjutrice in 1579. But the other canonisses refused to accept the automatic succession of Barbara von Salm and instead they elected Huberte de Chastenay and appealed to the pope, but he ruled in favour of Barbe, who appointed her rival as Coadjutrice and managed to build up a good relationship with the ladies of the chapter. 1588 the territory was hit by the plague for the second time. (d. 1602)


 

1581-86 Princess-Abbess Agnes Hedwig von Anhalt of Gernrode (Germany)

The third of four of daughters of prince Joachim Ernst von Anhalt to be titular head of the territory. She was follower of Melanchthons (Philippstine), which was in opposition to the ruling Lutheran Orthodoxy in Dresden. At the age of 14 she married Kurfürst August von Sachsen-Dessau, who died of a stroke after less than a month. And then, after 5 years as ruler of Gernrode, she married as his second wife, Duke Johann von Holstein-Sønderborg in 1588. He was the brother of August's first wife, Anna of Denmark. Agnes-Hedwig gave birth to seven children of which two daughters survived, and lived (1573-1616).


 

1582-87 De-facto Ruler Margarete von Warberg of Gandersheim (Germany)

She followed Elisabeth zu Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel, as the contra-abbess and real ruler after the official office-holder, Margareta II, had to flee in 1578.


Unnamed Abbess of Las Huelgas

1582-87 Reigning  Abbess-General Leonor de Castilla of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

The last Perpetual Abbess - that is elected for life. Her successors were elected for three-year periods. Possibly the 10th child of Alonso de Castilla, Lord del Mayorazgo de Valladolid, of an illegitimate sideline of the royal house of Castilla, and Ines de Acuna.

 

1582-96 Abbess with the authority of a County Sheriff Sophia Gyldenstjerne of  of the Chapter and Town of Maribo and surroundings (Denmark)

Elected by the Assembly of Canonesses and instated by the two Councillors of the Realm, Chancellor Ejler Grubbe and Steen Brahe. In the beginning she was an able administrator but soon the old disputes among the canonesses entrupted again and she was removed from office by King Christian 4. She was in charge of the estats of the chapter and mangade the Town of Maribo jointly with the Confessor.


 

1583-1611 Princess-Abbess Katherina II Brümsi von Herblingen of Schänis (Switzerland)

During her term in office the chapter burned down twice, in 1585 and 1610, and she sold some of the possessions in South Germany in order to extend the buildings of the Abbey and church. She reformed the Chapter and exerted her position as ruler of the territories. Her cousin Maria Brümsi was Fürstäbtissin of Säckingen 1615-21. She was daughter of Eberhard von Brümsi, Lord of Altenklingen in Schaffenhausen and Rosa von Breitenlandenberg.


 

1583-98 Princess-Abbess Ursula II Steinhauer of Baindt (Germany)

Probably member of the noble family of Steinhauer zu Bulgarn.

 

1583-1627 Reigning Abbess Marie V de Lorraine-Aumale of Chelles (France)

Daughter of Claude de Guise, duc d'Aumale and Louise de Brézé, and lived (1565-1627).


 

Around 1583 Abbess Nullius Vittoria Palagano of the Royal Convent of San Benedetto in Conversano, Temporal and Secular Ruler of Conversano (Italy)

Both secular and temporal ruler of the territory.


Fürstäbtissin Anna III zu Quedlinburg 

1584-1601 Princess-Abbess Anna III von Stolberg-Weiningsrode  of Quedlinburg (Germany)

Daughter of Heinrich the Older and Countess Elisabeth von Gleichen. Her brother, Wolfgang 1512 became Domherr of Halberstadt at the age of 10 and 2 years later he as chosen as Koadjutor as the Dean of the Cathedral (Dompropst) and he succeeded to the eccleastical office at the age of 15 and received its incomes while it was executed by a Vicar. Later he also became Dean of Dardesheim and Königstein. She lived (1565-1601).

 

1584-1635 Princess-Abbess Magalena von und zu Eltz of Munsterbilzen, Dame of Wellen, Haccourt, Hallembaye and Kleine-Spouwen (Belgium)

When she was elected abbess in spite of the fact that she was only around 20 years old, the failed candidate, 35 year old Magdalena von Eynatten, sister of the predecessor Maria, protested and the case dragged on for years until the Vatican ruled in von Eltz's favour and she was officially installed in 1591. 1610 she was first mentioned as Princess of the Realm in an official document, but the Prince-Bishop of Liège protested, and they engaged in a fierce powerstruggle. In 1616 she had her sister, Claudia named as Coadjutrice, but she married the following year. The chapter was also marked by the ongoing wars and was hit by plauge in 1622-23, 1629 and 1633-36. She was daughter of Godfried von Eltz-Uttingen and Regina van Elter, and lived (circa 1564-1635).


Dorothea Maria von Anhalt, Fürstabtissin von Gernrode and Herzogin-Witwe and Regentin of Sachsen-Weimar

1586-93 Princess-Abbess Dorothea Maria von Anhalt of Gernrode and Frose
1605-15 Joint Guardian of Sachsen-Weimar (Germany)

The last of four sisters to occupy the titular dignity of Fürstäbtissin, she resigned in order to marry Duke Johann von Sachsen Weimar (1570-1605) and became mother of 11 sons and 1 daughter, and was part of the guardianship after her husband's death. She was daughter of Prince Joachim Ernst von Anhalt and Eleonore von Württemberg, died after a fall from a horse, and lived (1574-1617).


 

1586-1604 Princess-Abbess Magdalena I zur Lippe of Herford (Germany)

Her sister, Margareta, had been sovereign of the territory 1563-78.


 

Until 1586 Reigning Abbess Louise de Bourbons-Vendôme of Faremoutiers (France)

Sister of Charlotte, who was first Abbess of Jouarre and later married Willem I van Oranje-Nassau, and succeeded by another sister, Jeanne de Jouarre. She lived (1548-86).


 

1587-90 and 1596-99 Reigning Abbess-General Inés Enríquez of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

The first Abbess to be elected for a three years period - and re-elected.

 

1588-98 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth VIII von Manderscheid-Blankenheim of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

The Countess was the sister of Elisabeth VI, who had resigned in 1578 in order to marry an Evangelical count. The abbey was very damaged during the wars of the time. In 1590 she appointed her brother as Amtmann (Governor) in Breisig, a small territory claimed by the Duke of Jülich. 


 

1589-1605 Princess-Abbess Ursula II von Stotzingen of Heggbach (Germany)

She was Prioress and second-in-command for a number of years before her election. At the time of her reign, her family was Imperial Immediate Lords (Reichsfreien Herren) of a territory in Württemberg and were later appointed Counts.


 

1589-1611 Princess-Abbess Anna Erika zu Waldeck-Eisenberg of Gandersheim (Germany)

The Countess was the first Evangelical ruler of the territory and for the first time since 1206 no Papal confirmation was sought for her election. She saw the fact that Emperor Rudolf II gave her the fief and regalia (mit den regalien belehnt) as a proof of the independent character of the territory and she refused to swear an oath of allegiance (Erbhuldigung) to the Duke of Braunschweig, but in 1593 she and Duke Heinrich Julius signed the "Grand Treaty" (Grosser Vertrag), where she gave the Duke a right to have a say when positions within the chapter had to be filled. On the other hand the Duke accepted that the Chapter enjoyed Freedom of the Realm (Reichsunmittelkeit). The chapter burned down in 1597 and was rebuilt in renaissance-style, which lead to heavy depths to the Duke of Braunschweig. She was daughter of Wolrad II Count of Waldeck-Eisenberg and Anastasia von Schwarzenburg, and lived (1551-1611).


 

1590-93 Reigning Abbess-General Beatriz Monique of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Her sister, Francisca Manrique de Lara y Vaencia, was Abbess-General 1570-81. Beatriz (d. 1593).

 

1592-1600 Reigning Abbess Agnes Reiff genannt Walter von Blidegg of Wald, Lady of the Offices of Wald, Vernhof and Ennigerloh (Germany)

As Abbess she also held the overlordship and lower jurisdiction in the villages of Wald, Buffenhofen, Burrau, Dietershofen, Gaisweiler, Hippetsweiler, Kappel, Litzelbach, Otterswang, Reischach, Riedetsweiler, Ringgenbach, Rothenlachen, Steckeln, Walbertsweiler und Weihwang by the Bodenzee Lake and outside it's acctual territories of Igelswies, Ruhestetten und Tautenbronn.


 

1593-96 and 1599-1601 Reigning Abbess-General Juana de Ayala of the Royal Monastery of Santa Maria la Real de Las Huelgas in Burgos (Spain)

Her full title was noble Lady, the superior, prelate, and lawful administratrix in spirituals and temporals of the royal abbey.

 

1593-1610 Princess-Abbess Sophie Elisabeth von Anhalt-Esau of Gernrode (Germany)

After she resigned in order to marry Georg Rudolf (Jerzsy) von Liegnitz (1595-1653) as his first wife, the Ecclesiastical Territory was secularised and incorporated into Anhalt-Bernburg. She was daughter of Johann Georg I von Anhalt-Esau and his first wife, Dorothea von Mansfeld-Arnstein, did not have any children, and lived (1589-1622).


 

1593-1643 Reigning Abbess Louise de L'Hôpital of Montvilliers (France)

Appoined by a bulle by Pope Clement VIII. One of 3 Abbesses from the Dynasty. Nicolas, Marquis de Vitry et d'Arc, Count de Châteauvillain and Seigneur de Coubert and Lucrèce Bouhier, succeeded by niece Anne de L'Hôpital , and lived (1567-1643).


 

1594-1608 Princess-Abbess Margaretha II Mufflin of Obermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Elected as successor of Magdalena von Gleissenthal.


 

1594-1610 Princess-Abbess Eléonore von Montfort of Buchau (Germany)

Her reign was very quiet and the chapter was in a stable development. She was daughter of Count Hugo von Montfort and Magdalena von Schwarzenberg and niece of the former abbess, Margarete von Montfort (1540-56). 


 

1596-1602 Abbess with the authority of a County Sheriff Margrethe Pedersdatter Norby of the Chapter and Town of Maribo and surroundings (Denmark)

Elected as successor of Sophia Gyldenstjerne. She had been married to Jørgen Bryske until their divorce, and in 1564 she entered the chapter. As Abbess she held the jurisdiction of those who lived at the estates of the Chapter and 1559 over the City of Maribo and surroundings. This meant that she had the right to appoint the judge (birkedommer) and received the income from the costs of the proceedings and fines. Daughter of Peder Norby til Urup (d. 1602).


 

1598-1625 Princess-Abbess Elisabeth IV Hartmann of Baindt (Germany)

In 1607 she introduced the more strong clausures and the common meal that had been demanded already in 1573. And in 1622 she build the long-building (Langbau) and reconstructed the Mill of the Chapter, which was financially very important for the territory


 

1598-1604 Princess-Abbess Margaretha-Elisabeth von Manderscheid-Gerolstein of Essen, Lady of Breisig, Huckard and Rellinghausen (Germany)

From 1586 she had been Abbess of the Stift Gerresheim, from 1598 of Freckenhorst, in 1590 she had become Probstin (Vice-Abbess) of Relinghausen and around 1600 she was elected Abbess in Schwarzrheindorf. She was daughter of Count Hans Gerhard and Margarethe, Wild und Rheingräfin, and lived (1569-1604). 


Tombstone of a Fürstäbtissin of Niedermünster, but the name and year of her death have disappeared from the wear of the centuries

1598-1605 Princess-Abbess Katharina II Scheiffl of Niedermünster in Regensburg (Germany)

Member of the Assembly of the Bavarian Circle. The function of each Circle was primarily the administration of Imperial law and the maintenance of order, but the assemblies also served to assess local opinion and to direct regional efforts as circumstances dictated. The system was formalized in 1500, when Emperor Maximilian I created 6 circles (Bavaria, Franconia, Lower Saxony, Swabia, Upper Saxony, Westphalia), and reorganized twelve years later into ten, with the addition of Austria, Burgundy, the Rheinish Electorates, and the Rhine Palatinate.

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