The abbey was built in the Middle Ages on the site of an earlier fortification. A small part of these defensive structures was incorporated into the monastery complex, an example of which is the Babengerg Tower. In the 15th century, the local monks initiated reforms within the Benedictine Order, preaching a return to the original doctrine of St. Benedict and gaining recognition of the church authorities, which was expressed, among others, by recognition of the organization of the community in Melk as exemplary by Pope Urban VIII. Monastery and church of st. Peter and St. Paul was subjected to a thorough baroqueization and expansion in the eighteenth century, as a result of which one of the largest baroque religious complexes in Europe and the most beautiful example of Baroque in Austria were created. The initiator of this expansion was Abbot Berthold Dietmayr. The photo shows the vault in the audience hall.