The Roman Catholic St. George's Church is probably the most important religious building of the city of Haguenau in Alsace. A first church building, started in 1143, was replaced around 1200 by a flat-roofed basilica with columns, recalling the architecture of Hirsau Abbey and the influence of the Romanesque architecture of Swabia. The exterior of the nave is divided by pilasters and archivolted friezes.
From 1250 to 1283, an expansion in Gothic style took place: a polygonal choir and transept and an octagonal crossing tower were added to the Romanesque nave and the aisles were covered with a cross-ribbed vault.
During the French Revolution and the fighting around the city in 1945, the church suffered losses in construction and decoration material. Several severed sculptures, that initially decorated the Eastern part of the church, are kept today in the Musée historique de Haguenau. The church was restored by 1963.
Most noteworthy inside of the Church are the pulpit from the year 1500 by Veit Wagner, a huge crucifix (4 meters high) from the year 1488 by Klemens von Baden, a twelve-meter-high tabernacle from 1523 by Friedrich Hammer, and several carved altars, including a large-scale work by Diebold Martin. The great pipe organ is made by Alfred Kern & Fils (1988) in a case of 1867 by the workshop of Eberhard Friedrich Walcker; however, there was already in the 15th century an organ documented in the building.
In 1845 the church received new stained glass windows depicting the Emperors Frederick Barbarossa, Konrad III, Rudolf von Habsburg, and Albert III, Duke of Austria. These windows did not survive the bombings of 1945. The windows to be seen today are the work of Jacques Le Chevallier, and were installed from 1956 to 1969.
The bell tower over the crossing and includes the two oldest active bells of Europe; both were cast in 1268 and survived World War II unscathed.References:
First record of Kastelholma (or Kastelholm) castle is from the year 1388 in the contract of Queen Margaret I of Denmark, where a large portion of the inheritance of Bo Jonsson Grip was given to the queen. The heyday of the castle was in the 15th and 16th centuries when it was administrated by Danish and Swedish kings and stewards of the realms. Kastelhoma was expanded and enhanced several times.
In the end of 16th century castle was owned by the previous queen Catherine Jagellon (Stenbock), an enemy of the King of Sweden Eric XIV. King Eric conquered Kastelholma in 1599 and all defending officers were taken to Turku and executed. The castle was damaged under the siege and it took 30 years to renovate it.
In 1634 Åland was joined with the County of Åbo and Björneborg and Kastelholma lost its administrative status.