- Heinz Anton Höhnen
Benedictine abbey near Koblenz on the Laacher See, Germany. Its Romanesque church, built between 1092 and 1220, towers over the monastery. From the time it was founded by Count Palatine Heinrich II the monastery was inhabited by monks without a break until its dissolution in 1802, after which the church and the library were plundered for their treasures. The monastery then changed hands several times: from 1862 to 1873 it belonged to the Jesuits and from 1892 it was again inhabited by monks from the Benedictine community of Beuron. In the ensuing period the monastery became one of the first and most important centres for the revival of Gregorian chant in the Rhineland. In 1910 a double organ, divided between the west gallery and the west transept, was installed in the church. It contained 66 stops and was built by Stahlhut of Aachen; in 1956 it was enlarged to 78 stops and was one of the first organs with fully electric transmission to have sliderless wind-chests. There are plans to bring together the two parts of this organ in the west gallery, and to install a new choir organ (Klais/Bonn) on the west wall of the south transept. Since the time of Ildefons Herwegen (abbot ...