Literae annuae of the residence in Bohosudov

A Jesuit Residence of Chomutov College with Basilica of Our Lady of Sorrows

(Residentia Crupnensis, Residentia Grupnensis, Residentia Mariascheinensis)

The beginnings of the Jesuit residence in Bohosudov can be found in 1587 when George Popel of Lobkowicz handed over to Jesuits of Klementinum a small chapel situated over an alleged grave of Crusaders, who had been executed there by the Hussites following the battle by Ústí nad Labem in 1426. Upon the establishment of the Chomutov College in 1590, an ecclesiastical administration of this chapel was transferred to the local community; after 1648, this community supported a development of the Bohosudov place of pilgrimage that was to serve as a German counterpart to Czech Svatá Hora by Příbram.


First of all, the Jesuits renewed the chapel – probably in its brick form. Hand in hand with the growing popularity of this place, they also had a provisional shelter for priests constructed in 1650. Yet it was not until a bequest by Anna Marie – who was the widow of Colonel Bleyleben and post White-Mountain owner of the Soběchleby Estate – that the Jesuits were able to start building a residence. The construction began in 1667 and the actual building was finished in 1677 when the Jesuits could move in. Since 1670, cloisters around the central chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Sorrows were simultaneously being constructed. There were seven chapels symbolizing the seven sorrows of Virgin Mary. The entire pilgrimage complex was fully finished only around 1722.

In 1679, a seminary was opened and even a lower gymnasium was established several years later. Since 1695, the religious confraternity Coetus Christi in Cruce Agonizantis et Matris Dolorosae was active by this residence of pilgrimage – this confraternity of Jesus Christ dying on the Cross and Our Lady of Sorrows was established towards the end of the 17th century and its indulgence privilege issued by Pope Innocent XII is dated May 16, 1695.

Following the dissolution of the Jesuit Order (1773), two diocesan priests were appointed to the premises. A new chapter pertaining to the activities of the Society of Jesus in the Austrian Empire started to be written after the renewal of the Order in 1814, in the case of Bohosudov from 1853, and it lasted until 1950 when the communist regime resorted to forced dissolution of monasteries of religious orders. For a brief period of time, Bohosudov became an internment camp for some members of religious orders. The third return of the Jesuits to Bohosudov took place only after 1989.

Annual Reports and Excerpts from These Reports

Just as in other monastic houses, annual reports of the Bohosudov residence were compiled at the beginning of the following year. Their texts, or at least their final versions, were originally written at the Chomutov College, but at least since the 1670s they were created by fathers directly in the residence, as is evidenced inter alia by different handwritings of reports for the college and the residence. Several clean copies of the reports were made. At first, there were probably only two copies, but since 1663 at the very latest, four or five copies were made — three of these copies were sent to Prague, where they were bound and transported to the Generalate or distributed between the individual houses of the Province according to a fixed plan.


Copies sent to Rome were deposited in the Archives of the Generalate (nowadays ARSI, manuscripts labelled with the letter R); one of the convolutes travelling across the Province ended its journey in the Prague Archive of the Province (manuscripts labelled with the letter P) and the second one in Brno in the archive of the novitiate (manuscripts labelled with the letter B). These series are rather scattered and nowadays the volumes can be found in the National Library in Prague, in the Austrian National Library and in the Olomouc Research Library.

In addition to these manuscripts of the convolute series on the basis of which it is possible to positively track all annual reports of the residence, often in multiple copies or versions, there certainly also existed a complete series of litterae annuae in the archive of the Bohosudov residence (manuscripts labelled with the letter D) and possibly also of the college in Chomutov, which leads to an assumption that even fifth copies of the reports commonly existed.

A torso of the litterae annuae collection – which also included excerpts from the reports (superscribed as epitomé, compendia or supplementa historiae, manuscripts labelled with the letter E), as was common in other houses as well – is nowadays deposited in the State Regional Archives in Litoměřice in the collection “Jezuité Bohosudov / Velkostatek Soběchleby, Spisy–Historica, kart. 3, inv. č. 80, popř. kart. 5, inv. č. 61.” (Jesuits Bohosudov / Manor Farm Estate Soběchleby, Treatises–Historica, file 3, inventory no. 80, or file 5, inventory no. 61).

The annual reports for the following years survived: 1669, 1671–1675, 1677, 1680–1706, 1708, 1720, 1734, 1737; the excerpts include the following years: 1691, 1693, 1694, 1700–1704, 1714–1716, 1730–1733. In addition to texts identical to the convolute versions, the series also contains drafts (for instance for the years 1686 and 1720), surplus multiplicate texts (for instance for the year 1697) or their incomplete torsos (for instance for the year 1690); as for the beginning of the ’90s other, otherwise unknown, texts survived as well – these texts were possibly written in connection with the creation of an overview of the history of the residence or of other treatises pertaining to the place of pilgrimage administered there by the Jesuits.

Overview of preserved manuscripts

Entry to the digital edition - a guide to the individual years:

Year Edition type
Coming soon