Fraumunster Church is on the west bank of the Limmat river in Zurich, Switzerland. With its beautiful blue-green steeple, it takes up major space in the skyline of Zurich. Not only is the place rich with history, but the area and terrain around here is truly a treat for your soul. The insides of the Church have a great soothing effect.
Fraumünster, when translated in English, means “Women’s Minister.” The Fraumunster Church is on the remains of an abbey which was the seat of power of the aristocratic women of the country. For years, they had the powers to collect toll, hold markets and mint money. This ultimately made the abbess the ruler of the city.
Later on, in time the abbey was dissolved, the buildings destroyed. But they rebuilt the Church on the remains of the abbey.
Chagall’s Stained Glass Windows
As soon as you walk inside the doors of this Church, the first part you will notice is the choir. And the beautiful colours of light in which the choir is bathed. As you move closer, what you see are the most elegantly painted series of 5 windows designed by French artist ‘Marc Chagall’. Each of them has a theme and a colour. They represent the biblical stories of Prophets, Jacob, Christ, Zion and Law with Moses, from left to right in that order.
One more significant piece of art is another glass window. The glass window in the northern part of the church is ‘ The Heavenly Paradise.’ ‘Augusto Giacometti’ has painted it.
After walking around the choir as you come out, on the opposite side of the choir is the Organ, in all its glory. It has a total of 5793 pipes making it the largest organ in the whole of Zurich. You can hear it’s sound at the free concerts. And the sound is indeed powerful but not deafening. Its acoustics are truly amazing.
Beneath the Choir
As you go down some steps, beneath the choir is the crypt museum. They have still preserved a part of the original foundation inside the crypt. It consists of the Holy Relics of the original abbey, which constitute the oldest part of the Church. There are a series of photos, handwritten letters, and some other things which demonstrate the local history, architecture and the story of the Church. There is also an information system that gives details about the original foundation structure, the changing colour of stones after the floods of Zurich, etc.
Visitor Timings and Rules
- March to October – 10.00 am to 6.00 pm
- November to February – 10.00 am to 5.00 pm
- On Sundays – Service in German starts at 10.00 am and Church opens for visitors at noon.
- They allow guided tours inside in whisper Mode only
- They do not allow photography inside the Church
Entry fee is 5 CHF/EUR/USD for visitors. They also give the crypt brochure and audio guides at the entrance.