The Church of the Holy Cross

Hattula, Finland

Hattula Church is one of the oldest brick buildings in Finland. It was built in the 15th century and dedicated to the Holy Cross. Wall paintings are from the 16th century. The porch in front of the hall was built in the 16th century of grey stone and bell tower in 1813.

Unique for having been built almost entirely of brick rather than stone, the church was a popular pilgrimage destination during the Middle Ages. A grey stone perimeter wall was added in the 16th century. The church contains paintings from the years 1510 through 1922, as well as 40 wooden sculptures dating to the first half of the 14th century. Precious-metal crowns which had formerly belonged to the church were confiscated during the Reformation. The church pulpit, dating to 1550, is the oldest surviving pulpit in Finland. A second pulpit was built in the 17th century.

The Hattula church is known for its lime paint frescoes done in late Gothic style, likely completed by the same group of artists who later painted the St. Lars church in Lohja.

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Details

Founded: 1440-1490
Category: Religious sites in Finland
Historical period: Middle Ages (Finland)

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