Where Luther Walked, #8: Grimma


An idyllic little town south-east of Leipzig on the river Mulde in Saxony, Grimma had a special significance for Luther: Katharina von Bora, who later became his wife, lived in a convent here for 14 years.

Martin Luther visited the city several times and achieved significant influence through his sermons in the abbey church. The citizens of Grimma quickly joined the Reformation. As early as 1519, Luther commented that 'the converted are already clearly in control' of the town.

Katharina von Bora came to Marienthron Convent in Nimbschen near Grimma as a young girl and took her vows in 1515. Influenced by Luther's writings, however, she became interested in the reformation movement. Luther helped her and eleven other nuns to flee the convent in the spring of 1523.

• The romantic convent ruins remain today surrounded by magnificent old trees as a reminder of those heady times. After the death of the last abbess, the monastery farm was dissolved in 1536 and the building was left to deteriorate.

• The recently completed Kloster Nimbschen Hotel with its 'abbey tavern' and Luther Room are also must-sees for the visitor.

• In Grimma itself is the impressive church belonging to the former abbey of St. Augustine where Luther preached several sermons. He often stopped in Grimma and fulminated against the trade in indulgences.

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