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Back in 1384, a farmer plowing his fields claimed to have unearthed a sacred host, and the discovery was accompanied by the appearance of Jesus with a phalanx of angels. A church was built on the spot, Creglingen became a place of pilgrimage, and between 1505 and 1510 famed carver Tilman Riemenschneider was commissioned to create an altar. The work is one of his most exquisite creations, with figures representing the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin into heaven, framed by scenes from her life. The expressive figures catch the light in such a way that they seem animated, and the sculpture changes in appearance throughout the day with the shifting sun. On August 15, the feast of the Assumption, sunlight illuminates Mary’s face in a heavenly glow. Beside the entrance of the church are figures that now seem innocent but at one time instilled fear in all who entered: two hens pecking at one another—a notice that any thoughts conflicting with church dogma were to be set aside—and a man thinking, a warning that no thought-challenging doctrines were allowed. Protruding from the right side exterior wall of the church is the so-called Tetzelkanzel (Tetzel pulpit), where Dominican friar Jacob Tetzel (1465–1519) preached to pilgrims assembled in the surrounding fields. Tetzel was essentially a snake-oil salesman who traded in indulgences, extracting fees from the faithful in exchange for the forgiveness of their sins. His mercenary practices led to a scandal that prompted Martin Luther’s break with the church.