The St. Nicholas Church (in German: Nikolaikirche) has long been one of the most famous in Leipzig, and rose to national fame with the Monday Demonstrations in 1989 when it became the centre of peaceful revolt against Communist rule.
The church was built around 1165 when Leipzig, also known as St. Nicholas's City, was founded. It is named after St. Nicholas, the patron saint of merchants and wholesalers, and is situated in the very heart of the city on the intersection of two then important trade roads. It is built partially in the Romanesque style but was extended and enlarged in the early 16th century with a more Gothic style. In 1794 the interior was remodeled by German architect Johann Carl Friedrich Dauthe in the neoclassical style. The church has been a Protestant seat since 1539 after the Protestant Reformation, but the Catholic Church is allowed to use it too.
The church saw four of the five performances (including the premiere) of the St John Passion by Johann Sebastian Bach on Good Friday in 1724, 1728, 1732, and 1749 as well as many of his cantatas and oratorios performed by the Thomanerchor.
The church organ is one of the best examples of the 'romantic' style of organ-building in Europe and was updated with pneumatic action in the early 20th century. More recently the church has been struggling to find the funds for interior restorations which have been ongoing since 1968. The church's current administration consists of Bernhard Stief.