Medieval churches in Sweden

Ulricehamn Church

Ulricehamn Church originates from th 15th century, but it was built to the current appearance in 1688. The three candelabras in the church are very impressive, and the oldest was made in 1627. The altarpiece and pulpit are both carved in elaborate Baroque style and were made in the 18th century. The ceiling is adorned with paintings from the late 17th century. These were produced by Anders Falck.
Founded: 15th century | Location: Ulricehamn, Sweden

Halla Church

The oldest part of Halla Church is the Romanesque nave, dating from circa 1200. The tower is slightly later, while the disproportionally large choir is from the middle of the 14th century, in Gothic style and replacing an older on the same spot. Scholars have concluded that there were plans to replace the whole church with a Gothic edifice, but the builders probably ran out of funds after constructing the choir. The exte ...
Founded: c. 1200 | Location: Halla, Sweden

Öckerö Old Church

The older church of Öckerö was built around 1450 to the site of earlier wooden church. The current appearance date from the restoration made in the 1780s. There are two artefacts, a font and crucifix, dating from the previous church and two wooden sculptures made in the 15th century. The altar was made in 1626 and roof paintings (“Last Judgement”) in 1792.
Founded: ca. 1450 | Location: Öckerö, Sweden

Kinne-Vedum Church

Kinne-Vedum church was built of sandstone in the late 12th century by German master Othelric. It is one of the best preserved Romanesque churches in the county. The tower was erected in the 13th century and arches in the 15th century. The font, made of sandstone, date from the 1100s. There are also two Madonna sculptures from the Middle Ages. The pulpit was made in 1691.
Founded: 12th century | Location: Götene, Sweden

Västerplana Church

Västerplana Church date from the 12th century. In the 18th century the church was considered to be too small and therefore it was enlarged and transformed into a cruciform church. Thus the direction of its nave is no longer west to east but north to south, where the chancel is today. The northern arm of the cross was begun in 1724 and the southern one was finished in 1737. This new part of the church got a high altar ...
Founded: 12th century | Location: Källby, Sweden

Suntak Church

Suntak is the only parish in Tidaholm that has two churches in use. The old church in Suntak is of rare character with its Romance architecture from the late 12th century. Inside the church there are remains of the wall paintings made during the Middle Ages of lime. One of the oldest piece of furniture in Sweden was found in the old church in Suntak, a bishops-bench from late Middle Ages. The piece of furniture with it i ...
Founded: 12th century | Location: Tidaholm, Sweden

Rogslösa Church

The tower of Rogslösa Church was built in the 1100s and the existing nave in 1200s. The ornamentation around the church door was carved at this time, and depicts a number of religious and Biblical themes. It is renowned as a particularly fine example of work from the period. The inventory includes a German triptych from the 15th century and a late medieval processional crucifix.
Founded: 12th century | Location: Borghamn, Sweden

Odarslöv Church

Odarslöv Church dates from the 1100s and is built in the Romanesque style. It was restored according the plan of C. G. Brunius in the 19th century. The font dates from the original church and is made by so-called “Mårten stone master”. The cuppa was made in Germany in the 1500s. The altarpiece was painted by Gunnar John in 1937.
Founded: 12th century | Location: Lund, Sweden

Övraby Church Ruins

Övraby stone church was built around the year 1100 to the site of older church. There was also a Dominican monastery nearby in or around 1260. Halmstad moved in the 1320s to its present location and the old settlement came to be known as Övraby. The Swedish army’s ravages in the 1560s during the Northern Seven Years" War meant the end of “the upper village”. The church was burned to the gr ...
Founded: c. 1100 | Location: Halmstad, Sweden

Lunda Church

There has been one or more earlier churches on the same site of current Lunda church. One evidence of this is a font, dating from the 1200s. The current church was built in the early 1400s. The pulpit is designed by C. W. Palmroth and donated to Lunda church in 1806.
Founded: 15th century | Location: Sigtuna, Sweden

Odensala Church

The church of Odensala was built in the late 1100s. The sacristy and tower were added later. The brick-made portal dates from the late 1200s. The arches were added in 1300s. Odensala church is famous for its colorful and expressive lime paintings from the 1500"s by Albertus Pictor or his workshop. The altarpiece was made in 1514, but is today in museum. The pulpit is a gift from Count Karl Gyllenstierna (1714).
Founded: 12th century | Location: Sigtuna, Sweden

Selånger Church

The old Selånger Church was built around 1200, but today it is in ruins. There is a runestone called Selångerstenen from the Viking Age outside the ruins. The current church was completed in 1780-1781. The limestone-made font was moved from the old church (c. 1200). The pulpit dates from 1790.
Founded: 1780-1781 | Location: Sundsvall, Sweden

Rya Church Ruins

The first Rya church was completed in the late 1100s. It might by built by monks from the Herrevad Abbey. Today impressive ruins of this church remain. The new brick-church was inaugurated in 1875. The original font (1100s) has been brought from the old church.
Founded: 12th century | Location: Örkelljunga, Sweden

Orsa Church

The first stone church in Orsa was built during the 13th century and maybe it replaced an old stave church. Around 1300 the church was built out in east direction and then maybe the sacristy came. In the middle of the 14th century the church was beamed out to the present beam. In the end of the 15th century it was built out to the present size, except the choir. In 1607 they planned to build the bell tower at the western ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Orsa, Sweden

Ytterlännäs Old Church

The Old Church of Ytterlännäs dates from the early 13th century, retaining the original walls and the Romanesque outer door with its iron ornament around the keyhole, and a lion"s head from c. 800 from the area of Byzantine cultural influence around Constantinople. In the 15th century a vestry and a "weapon-house" (porch) were added, the choir was extended to make it as wide as the rest of the ch ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Kramfors, Sweden

Håby Church

Håby church originates from the 12th century and it had probably only a square nave. Later it was enlarged and the tower was added in 1869. The exterior appearance dates mainly from the 18th century. The wooden font was made in 1647, pulpit in 1650 and altar 1939.
Founded: 12th century | Location: Munkedal, Sweden

Stenkyrka Church

According the Gutasaga, a man called Lickajr the Wise built one of the first churches on Gotland in Stenkyrka. If true, this first church was almost certainly wooden. The name Stenkyrka (literally in Swedish stone church) implies that also the stone church is very early, from a time when buildings made of stone (rather than wood) was still a phenomenon unusual enough to give name to a place. This first, Romanesque church ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Stenkyrka, Sweden

Södra Ving Church

The oldest parts of Södra Ving date from the 12th century. It is known of its remarkable stone sculptures and paintings from three different periods of the Middle Ages. The Gothic mural paintings in middle nave date from the 1400s. There are also two runestones in the churchyard.
Founded: 12th century | Location: Hökerum, Sweden

Simlinge Church

Simlinge Church was built around the year 1200. The bell tower was erected in 1852. The altarpiece depicts the Last supper, and the pulpit dates from year 1623.
Founded: c. 1200 | Location: Trelleborg, Sweden

Trosa Country Church

The oldest parts of Trosa Country Church (lands kyrka) were built in the 1200s. The sacristy was added later in the 1300s, vaults and tower in the 1400s. The strong tower may have had a defensive purpose. In 1773 church was badly damaged by fire and restored. The altarpiece is painted in Netherlands in the mid-1500s. The pulpit was made in Stockholm in 1706. The crucifix dates from the end of 1200s and wooden sculpture of ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Vagnhärad, Sweden

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Château d'Olhain

The Château d'Olhain is probably the most famous castle of the Artois region. It is located in the middle of a lake which reflects its picturesque towers and curtain walls. It was also a major stronghold for the Artois in medieval times and testimony to the power of the Olhain family, first mentioned from the 12th century.

The existence of the castle was known early in the 13th century, but the present construction is largely the work of Jean de Nielles, who married Marie d’Olhain at the end of the 15th century.

The marriage of Alix Nielles to Jean de Berghes, Grand Veneur de France (master of hounds) to the King, meant the castle passed to this family, who kept it for more than 450 years. Once confiscated by Charles Quint, it suffered during the wars that ravaged the Artois. Besieged in 1641 by the French, it was partly demolished by the Spaniards in 1654, and finally blown-up and taken by the Dutch in 1710. Restored in 1830, it was abandoned after 1870, and sold by the last Prince of Berghes in 1900. There is also evidence that one of the castles occupants was related to Charles de Batz-Castelmore d'Artagnan, the person Alexandre Dumas based his Three Musketeers charictor d'Artagnan on.

During the World War I and World War II, the castle was requisitioned first by French troops, then Canadian and British soldiers. The current owner has restored the castle to its former glory.