1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Eichstätt

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EICHSTÄTT, a town and episcopal see of Germany, in the kingdom of Bavaria, in the deep and romantic valley of the Altmühl, 35 m. S. of Nuremberg, on the railway to Ingolstadt and Munich. Pop. (1905) 7701. The town, with its numerous spires and remains of medieval fortifications, is very picturesque. It has an Evangelical and seven Roman Catholic churches, among the latter the cathedral of St Wilibald (first bishop of Eichstätt), — with the tomb of the saint and numerous pictures and relics, — the church of St Walpurgis, sister of Wilibald, whose remains rest in the choir, and the Capuchin church, a copy of the Holy Sepulchre. Of its secular buildings the most noticeable are the town hall and the Leuchtenberg palace, once the residence of the prince bishops and later of the dukes of Leuchtenberg (now occupied by the court of justice of the district), with beautiful grounds. The Wilibaldsburg, built on a neighbouring hill in the 14th century by Bishop Bertold of Hohenzollern, was long the residence of the prince bishops of Eichstätt, and now contains an historical museum. There are an episcopal lyceum, a clerical seminary, a classical and a modern school, and numerous religious houses. The industries of the town include bootmaking, brewing and the production of lithographic stones.

Eichstätt (Lat. Aureatum or Rubilocus) was originally a Roman station which, after the foundation of the bishopric by Boniface in 745, developed into a considerable town, which was surrounded with walls in 908. The bishops of Eichstätt were princes of the Empire, subject to the spiritual jurisdiction of the archbishops of Mainz, and ruled over considerable territories in the Circle of Franconia. In 1802 the see was secularized and incorporated in Bavaria. In 1817 it was given, with the duchy of Leuchtenberg, as a mediatized domain under the Bavarian crown, by the king of Bavaria to his son-in-law Eugene de Beauharnais, ex-viceroy of Italy, henceforth styled duke of Leuchtenberg. In 1855 it reverted to the Bavarian crown.