Abteimuseum Echternach

Musée de l’Abbaye - Abdijmuseum

Useful Information

Location: Parvis de la Basilique 11, 6486 Echternach
(49.813572, 6.421823)
Open: Palm Sunday to JUN daily 10-12, 14-17.
JUL to AUG daily 10-17.
SEP to All Saints‘ Day daily 10-12, 14-17.
Fee: Adults EUR 3, Children (0-21) free, Seniors (60+) EUR 1.50.
Groups (10+): Adults EUR 1.50.
Classification: SubterraneaUnderground Museums
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Guided tours: self guided. Audioguides Deutsch - German Français - French Nederlands - Dutch English
Address: Abteimuseum, Parvis de la Basilique 11, 6486 Echternach, Tel: +352-72-74-72. E-mail:
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
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698 Echternach Abbey founded by Saint Willibrord.
1727 Abbey Palace with cellars erected.
1797 monastery abandoned.
1987 Abbey Museum in the basement opened to the public.


The Abteimuseum (Abbey Museum) of the former abbey of Echternach is located in the vaults of the building. It is accessed through the courtyard next to the Basilica of Saint Willibrord. The exhibition shows archaeological remains and the history of Echternach. This includes the Roman Villa, facsimiles of the most famous manuscripts created in the abbey scriptorium, and the life and cult of Saint Willibrord.

Echternach Abbey was founded by Saint Willibrord in 698. He is the patron saint of Luxembourg. Soon after the foundation of the monastery, a scriptorium was established, books were written and illuminated to be used in religious services and in the monastic school. Between the 8th and 11th century the most beautiful manuscripts were created.

The best known codex of the exhibition is called Codex Aureus Epternacensis (Golden Codex of Echternach) from around 1040, because the text pages of the Gospels were entirely written in gold ink. The cover was donated to the monastery by Empress Theophanu and her son Otto, and was reused. Produced under the direction of Abbot Humbert, it has 136 folios which measure 446 mm by 310 mm. It contains over 60 decorative pages including 16 full page miniatures, 9 full page initials, 5 evangelist portraits, 10 decorated pages of canon tables, and 16 half-page initials. This makes it one of the most lavishly illuminated Ottonian manuscripts. It was at the abbey until the French Revolutionary wars. When Luxembourg was conquered and annexed by Revolutionary France in 1795, the monastery was seized and sold. The fleeing monks carried the manuscript and other portable treasures with them. In 1801, it was sold with two other manuskripts to Ernest II, Duke of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg. The original book is owned by the Germanisches Nationalmuseum in Nuremberg, Germany, since 1955. But the Abbey Museum has facsimiles of numerous colourful illuminations.