Sodankylä Old Church

Sodankylä, Finland

Built in 1689 for the people of central Lapland, the old timber church in Sodankylä is one of the wooden churches to survive in Lapland and one of the oldest in Finland. Following the completion of the new stone church, the old church was decommissioned in 1859. In terms of style, the church is a sample of Finnish medieval ecclesiastic architecture and Ostrobothnian wooden church designs. The church was restored in 1926 and the shingled roof and external cladding repaired during 1992-95 by the National Board on Antiquities. The church is unique in having preserved its original design and atmosphere throughout centuries.

Prayer meetings are held in the church in summer, and it is a specially popular venue for weddings.

Reference: Sodankylä Municipality

Comments

Your name

Website (optional)



Details

Founded: 1689
Category: Religious sites in Finland
Historical period: Swedish Empire (Finland)

More Information

www.sodankyla.fi

Rating

4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

Interesting Sites Nearby

User Reviews

Mirka (3 months ago)
Vanha puukirkko, kannattaa tutustua
Fennec Elisabeth (6 months ago)
Au milieu d'un bosquet et complètement cernée par une clôture de bois très travaillée, une belle église en bois debout. L’église same de Sodankylä, la gamla kyrka, est l’une des plus anciennes églises en bois de Finlande. C'est l'un des rares bâtiments à avoir survécu à la politique de la terre brulée de l'armée allemande battant en retraite vers la fin de la seconde guerre mondiale. De la vieille église part un sentier formant une courte boucle et agrémenté de panneaux décrivant la nature locale ainsi que de poèmes gravés dans des pierres, connu sous le nom de Pappilanniemen luontopolku (sentier nature de Pappilanniemi). À quelques pas de là, une statue de bronze représentant un Sámi aux prises avec un renne constitue l'un des symboles du village. Le Sámi porte un bonnet dit : des 4 vents En voici la belle légende : Il y a fort longtemps la Laponie était inhabitée, car quatre vents soufflaient en tout sens. Un jour, un chaman réussit à les dompter en les invitant dans sa hutte chaude. Il les enferma dans son chapeau et finit par les relâcher à une seule condition: les vents ne devaient plus souffler ensemble, mais les uns après les autres. Depuis, la Laponie est habitée et les Sámis portent des chapeaux aux quatre vents en souvenir de cette légende.
Luis Fernando Perez Sanz (14 months ago)
En medio de un bonito parque y con fina lluvia nos dimos de bruces con la Iglesia quizás mas antigua de Finlandia. Una preciosa construcción de madera y que según cuentan, debajo de la misma se encuentra las tumbas de los sacerdotes que ha tenido la misma. Una pena porque aparte de que estaba cerrada, la fina lluvia nos hizo abandonar el lugar a toda prisa.
Raili Karvonen-Willman (2 years ago)
Ihana käyntikohde joka kesä. Osa kylän historiaa.
Jakub Kracík (3 years ago)
Wooow. The best of church
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Beersel Castle

The moated castle at Beersel is one of the few exceptionally well-preserved examples of medieval fortifications in Belgium. It remains pretty much as it must have appeared in the 15th century. Remarkably, it was never converted into a fortified mansion. A visitor is able to experience at first-hand how it must have felt to live in a heavily fortified castle in the Middle Ages.

The castle was built in around 1420 as a means of defence on the outer reaches of Brussels. The tall, dense walls and towers were intended to hold any besiegers at bay. The moat and the marshy ground along its eastern, southern and western edges made any attack a formidable proposition. For that reason, any attackers would have chosen its weaker northern defences where the castle adjoins higher lying ground. But the castle was only taken and destroyed on one occasion in 1489, by the inhabitants of Brussels who were in rebellion against Maximilian of Austria.

After being stormed and plundered by the rebels it was partially rebuilt. The pointed roofs and stepped gables are features which have survived this period. The reconstruction explains why two periods can be identified in the fabric of the edifice, particularly on the outside.

The red Brabant sandstone surrounds of the embrasures, now more or less all bricked up, are characteristic of the 15th century. The other embrasures, edged with white sandstone, date from the end of the 15th century. They were intended for setting up the artillery fire. The merlons too are in white sandstone. The year 1617 can be clearly seen in the foundation support on the first tower. This refers to restorations carried out at the time by the Arenberg family.

Nowadays, the castle is dominated by three massive towers. The means of defence follow the classic pattern: a wide, deep moat surrounding the castle, a drawbridge, merlons on the towers, embrasures in the walls and in the towers, at more or less regular intervals, and machiolations. Circular, projecting towers ensured that attacks from the side could be thwarted. If the enemy were to penetrate the outer wall, each tower could be defended from embrasures facing onto the inner courtyard.

The second and third towers are flanked by watchtowers from which shots could be fired directly below. Between the second and third tower are two openings in the walkway on the wall. It is not clear what these were used for. Were these holes used for the disposing of rubbish, or escape routes. The windows on the exterior are narrow and low. All light entering comes from the interior. The few larger windows on the exterior date from a later period. It is most probable that the third tower - the highest - was used as a watchtower.