According to documents the south wing, with refectory and large cellar underneath, was built first, followed by the east wing. But what remains today suggests the reverse. In any case, the abbots Sigebodo (1138-1161) and Thioter (1161-1176) were responsible for the original construction. Excavations on the south wall of the abbey show that the south wing was built in several stages. Another argument for a previously longer east wing can be found in the ground plan. The south cross-beams in the kitchen have been shortened, so they must have previously extended further to the south.
During restoration work since 2000, it has been possible to investigate the roof truss of the refectory more closely. Dendrochronological methods show that it dates back to 1796. It can be assumed that the roof truss was also built at that time.
It is likely that the abbey buildings were constructed in the following order: The east wing was built first because the capitals there are simpler and less sculptured. Some of the column shafts show vertical fluting. The 19th century lithograph by Puttrich depicts mainly columns with round shafts in the chapter house, their capitals decorated with palm ornaments, although a few square capitals with half-shields can also be discerned. The latter are also in the corner room of the east wing (warming room or kitchen). These decorations are clear evidence of a later construction of the south wing, where the column ornamentation in the refectory points to the 2nd half of the 12th century. These art-historical arguments were recently supported by excavations on the south wall in 2003: the south wing was longer than today, as proved by the excavated remains of a wall to the south.