The Abbey during the Middle Ages

Den helige Benedikts Regel, cisterciensernas grundbok, skrevs på 500-talet. Detta exemplar som är tryckt 1575 har tillhört linköpingsbiskopen Erik Benzelius och finns på Stiftsbiblioteket i Linköping.

Utsnitt ur de Rogiers karta från 1600-talet som visar klostrets kärnområde. Det är inringat med röda linjer.

1600-talskarta över Askeby.

Överstad by donerades 1406 till Askeby kloster av Lafrin Fröstensson. Byn ligger mycket nära klostret.

Rekonstruktion av klostret på 1400-talet.

Från vänster ses en leksyster, abbedissan och en vigd nunna. Dockorna är tillverkade av Maria Åhrén 2009.

Som en följd av slaget vid Stångebro lät Karl IX år 1600 vid Linköpings blodbad avrätta huvudmännen för de sex adelsätterna som varit klostrets välgörare . Det blev också slutet för klostret som totalförstördes. Läs mer om kungen i Den oförsonlige av Erik Petersson.

While the Cistercian monks usually built their monasteries in uninhabited and mostly swamped areas, the nuns settled at locations with an existing church, close to a road and access to labour force.

The abbey was situated by the ancient road between Söderköping and the central parts of Östergötland. About a kilometer to the East there was an important crossing over the water (Vadet), which explains why the road passed through Askeby. The village became an intersection of roads in several directions, and this is also where one of the king’s courtyards and a church were situated during the 12th century.

However, Askeby became “the defeated abbey,” both spiritually and politically. It was afflicted by damages during the time it served as an abbey and was finally ruined after the Reformation. The abbey was to a large extent anonymous; the relatives that previously supported it had now lost the political game, the abbey was caved in, the bricks in the outer walls were reused, and the abbey yard was transformed into a turnaround for horse carriages arriving to the granary that was built in the medieval congregational church in the 1770s. As the turnaround gradually expanded, parts of the east side abbey walls were torn down. The granary in Askeby was, however, for several reasons appreciated and of great use for the parish, something also worth mentioning. Askeby was during a few decades, a meeting point in both spring and autumn for peasants from four districts – somewhat of a new golden age for the parish.