The first known reference to Bregentved is from 1319 when King Eric VI of Denmark passed the estate to Roskilde Abbey. From the end of the 14th century the property was owned by a succession of aristocratic families, including that of Krognos in the 16th century, until 1718 when it was acquired by King Frederick IV. In the 18th century Bregentved was in consecutive Birks, so had separate legal jurisdiction from Haslev Sogn (parish) and old Ringsted Herred (hundred). The north wing still extant in the early 21st century was built 1731-36 by architect Lauritz de Thurah and has a black-tiled, hipped roof. It contains a chapel on the first floor.
In 1746, King Frederick V granted the Bregentved estate to Adam Gottlob Moltke, one of his closest companions who was at the same time made lord chamberlain and a count. Over the next few years, Moltke adapted the two remaining wings with the assistance of the architects G.D. Anthon and Nicolai Eigtved. Moltke also commissioned Eigtved to built him a large mansion in Copenhagen, the south-western of the four Amalienborg Palaces, which was completed in 1754. At Bregentved, Moltke introduced several agricultural reforms to the management of the estate with inspiration from Holstein.
A. G. Moltke died at Bregentved on 25 September 1792, passing his estates to his oldest son, Joachim Godske Moltke, who ceded their mansion in Copenhagen to the royal family after the fire of Christiansborg Palace in 1794. As a replacement, Adam Wilhelm Moltke, who had just left office as the first Prime Minister under Denmark's new constitutional monarchy, acquired a new mansion which became known as Moltke's Mansion. After the harvests at Bregentved Manor and other family holdings, he would move his entire household to Copenhagen.
In the 1880s, Count Frederik Christian Moltke decided to modernize the house. He demolished the two Eigtved wings and replaced them with two new wings which were completed in 1891 to the design of the architect Axel Berg.
The east and south wings of the present three-winged building date from Axel Berg's 1891 rebuilding and stand on Eigtved's foundations. They are designed in the Neo-Rococo style and are topped by a Mansard roof in copper and tile. The east wing has a three-bay risalit with pilasters and a triangular pediment, and a two-bay corner risilit at each end with segmental pediments. The entrance tower also dates from Berg's expansion.
The north wing was built 1731-36 by Lauritz de Thurah and has a black-tiled, hipped roof. It contains a chapel on the first floor which has sculptor Johann Friedrich Hännel.
In the 1760s, A. G. Moltke commissioned Nicolas-Henri Jardin to create a garden in the French formal garden style but it was adapted into a landscape garden in 1835. Some features have been retained from Jardin's garden, including avenues, and traces of a parterre surrounded by canals and a system of fountains, which was restored in 1994. Some vases and Frederik V's Obelisk (1770) by Johannes Wiedewelt also date from this garden as does a copy of a statue by Giambologna. The garden also features a statue of A. W. Moltke by Herman Wilhelm Bissen in 1858-59.
Today Bregentved-Turebyholm covers 6,338 hectares and total of 163 houses also belongs to the estate. There is no public access to the house but the park is open to the public on Wednesdays, Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays. Admission is free of charge.References:
The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood is one of the main sights of St. Petersburg. The church was built on the site where Tsar Alexander II was assassinated and was dedicated in his memory. Construction began in 1883 under Alexander III, as a memorial to his father, Alexander II. Work progressed slowly and was finally completed during the reign of Nicholas II in 1907. Funding was provided by the Imperial family with the support of many private donors.
Architecturally, the Cathedral differs from St. Petersburg's other structures. The city's architecture is predominantly Baroque and Neoclassical, but the Savior on Blood harks back to medieval Russian architecture in the spirit of romantic nationalism. It intentionally resembles the 17th-century Yaroslavl churches and the celebrated St. Basil's Cathedral in Moscow.
The Church contains over 7500 square metres of mosaics — according to its restorers, more than any other church in the world. The interior was designed by some of the most celebrated Russian artists of the day — including Viktor Vasnetsov, Mikhail Nesterov and Mikhail Vrubel — but the church's chief architect, Alfred Alexandrovich Parland, was relatively little-known (born in St. Petersburg in 1842 in a Baltic-German Lutheran family). Perhaps not surprisingly, the Church's construction ran well over budget, having been estimated at 3.6 million roubles but ending up costing over 4.6 million. The walls and ceilings inside the Church are completely covered in intricately detailed mosaics — the main pictures being biblical scenes or figures — but with very fine patterned borders setting off each picture.
In the aftermath of the Russian Revolution, the church was ransacked and looted, badly damaging its interior. The Soviet government closed the church in the early 1930s. During the Second World War when many people were starving due to the Siege of Leningrad by Nazi German military forces, the church was used as a temporary morgue for those who died in combat and from starvation and illness. The church suffered significant damage. After the war, it was used as a warehouse for vegetables, leading to the sardonic name of Saviour on Potatoes.
In July 1970, management of the Church passed to Saint Isaac's Cathedral (then used as a highly profitable museum) and proceeds from the Cathedral were funneled back into restoring the Church. It was reopened in August 1997, after 27 years of restoration, but has not been reconsecrated and does not function as a full-time place of worship; it is a Museum of Mosaics. Even before the Revolution it never functioned as a public place of worship; having been dedicated exclusively to the memory of the assassinated tsar, the only services were panikhidas (memorial services). The Church is now one of the main tourist attractions in St. Petersburg.