The Linköping Cathedral is the seat for the bishop in the Church of Sweden Diocese of Linköping. The present church is about 800 years old. However, its history starts in the 11th century, with a wooden church being built. Later, around 1120, a stone church was being constructed; a basilica of about half the size of the present building.
Around 1230 it became necessary to construct a larger church, as the basilica had become too small. The church was extended to the East, with a new choir and transept. These parts remain as part of the present church. The current altarpiece is also from that period. The next extension of the church was made following the coronation of King Valdemar, in 1251. Now, the main building was constructed, and the church received its current length. Its length is 110 meters and the height of the tower is 107 metres.
Between 1408–1420 the chapels were constructed in Gothic architecture, with large windows and star shaped vaults. The chapels were named after Saint Andreas (later renamed into Saint Mary), St. Nicolaus and St. Thomas.
Fire damaged the roof of the church in 1546 and 1567. The tower was rebuilt between 1747–1758 and again between 1877–1886 by Helgo Zettervall. However, a restoration was made in 1967, restoring the shape of the 17th century roof. The roof is covered with copper plating. The corrosion has created the green color.References:
Lübeck Cathedral is a large brick-built Lutheran cathedral in Lübeck, Germany and part of the Lübeck UNESCO World Heritage Site. In 1173 Henry the Lion founded the cathedral to serve the Diocese of Lübeck, after the transfer in 1160 of the bishop's seat from Oldenburg in Holstein under bishop Gerold. The then Romanesque cathedral was completed around 1230, but between 1266 and 1335 it was converted into a Gothic-style building with side-aisles raised to the same height as the main aisle.
On the night of Palm Sunday (28–29 March) 1942 a Royal Air Force bombing raid destroyed a fifth of the town centre. Several bombs fell in the area around the church, causing the eastern vault of the quire to collapse and destroying the altar which dated from 1696. A fire from the neighbouring cathedral museum spread to the truss of the cathedral, and around noon on Palm Sunday the towers collapsed. An Arp Schnitger organ was lost in the flames. Nevertheless, a relatively large portion of the internal fittings was saved, including the cross and almost all of the medieval polyptychs. In 1946 a further collapse, of the gable of the north transept, destroyed the vestibule almost completely.
Reconstruction of the cathedral took several decades, as greater priority was given to the rebuilding of the Marienkirche. Work was completed only in 1982.
The cathedral is unique in that at 105 m, it is shorter than the tallest church in the city. This is the consequence of a power struggle between the church and the guilds.
The 17 m crucifix is the work of the Lübeck artist Bernt Notke. It was commissioned by the bishop of Lübeck, Albert II. Krummendiek, and erected in 1477. The carvings which decorate the rood screen are also by Notke.
Since the war, the famous altar of Hans Memling has been in the medieval collection of the St. Annen Museum, but notable polyptychs remain in the cathedral.
In the funeral chapels of the southern aisle are Baroque-era memorials by the Flemish sculptor Thomas Quellinus.