ZEITZ, a town of Germany, in the extreme south of the Prussian province of Saxony, pleasantly situated on a hill on the Weisse (White) Elster, 28 m. by rail S.S.W. of Leipzig on the line to Gera, and with branches to Altenburg and Weissenfels. Pop. (1885) 19,797; ( I 9) 2 7)39!- The river is here crossed by two iron bridges, and one stone and one timber bridge, and the upper and lower towns are connected by a funicular railway. The Gothic abbey church dates from the 15th century, but its Romanesque crypt from the iath. The old Franciscan monastery, now occupied by a seminary, contains a library of 20,000 volumes. Just outside the town rises the Moritzburg, built in 1564 by the dukes of Saxe-Zeitz, on the site of the bishop's palace; it is now a reformatory and poorhouse. Zeitz has manufactures of cloth, cottons and other textiles, machinery, wax-cloth, musical instruments, vinegar, cigars, etc.; and wood-carving, dyeing and calico-printing are carried on. In the neighbourhood there are considerable deposits of lignite, and mineral-oil works.
Zeitz is an ancient place of Slavonic origin. From 968 till 1028 it was the seat of a bishopric, afterwards removed to Naumburg, 155 m. to the N.W., and styled Naumburg-Zeitz. In 1564 the last Roman Catholic bishop died, and his dominions were thenceforward administered by princes of Saxony. From 1653 till 1718 Zeitz was the capital of the dukes of Saxe-Zeitz or Sachsen-Zeitz. It thereafter remained in the possession of the electors of Saxony until 1815, when it passed to Prussia.
See Rothe, A us der Geschichte der Stadt Zeitz (Zeitz, 1876); and Lange, Chronik des Bisthums Naumburg (Naumburg, 1891).
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)