Tønsberg Castle Ruins

Tønsberg, Norway

Dating in 871, Tønsberg is commonly believed to have been the oldest Norwegian town and one of the oldest recorded fortified locations in Norway. According to Snorri Sturluson, Tønsberg was founded before the Battle of Hafrsfjord under which King Harald I of Norway united Norway under his rule. Tønsberg was an important trading center and site of Haugathing, the Thing (assembly) for Vestfold and one of Norway's most important place for the proclamation of kings.In 1253, King Haakon Haakonson set up a castle, Tunsberghus, at the location of the modern Tønsberg municipality.

In 1503, after the Kalmar Union collapsed, Norwegian attempts to rebel were suppressed by Danish forces. Tunsberghus fortress was destroyed by Swedish soldiers and disloyal local peasants.

Only a few ruins of the fortress are now left. The modern-day tower (Slottsfjellet i Tønsberg) was raised in 1888 as a memorial of the historic fortress. The present tower was built during 1888 as a memorial of the historic fortress. In 1971, local authorities improved the insulation. At that time new plaques were mounted inside the tower. On the sides are the gilded signatures of two modern Kings of Norway: Haakon VII (1 August 1906) and Olav V (1 July 1958).

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Details

Founded: 871 AD
Category: Ruins in Norway

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

Rating

4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Wiktoria Kościelniak (4 years ago)
Lovely place. Worth seeing
Miroslav Chovanec (4 years ago)
Beautiful view. Nice place
Ole Magnus Karlsen (5 years ago)
Good for kids and adults. Commands an excellent view. Too bad its not bigger.
Laura Slendzokaitė (5 years ago)
Beautiful place to see all city from one place
Barbro Andersen (5 years ago)
Cool place with a lot of history and a nice view of the city.
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Varberg Fortress was built in 1287-1300 by count Jacob Nielsen as protection against his Danish king, who had declared him an outlaw after the murder of King Eric V of Denmark. Jacob had close connections with king Eric II of Norway and as a result got substantial Norwegian assistance with the construction. The fortress, as well as half the county, became Norwegian in 1305.

King Eric's grand daughter, Ingeborg Håkansdotter, inherited the area from her father, King Haakon V of Norway. She and her husband, Eric, Duke of Södermanland, established a semi-independent state out of their Norwegian, Swedish and Danish counties until the death of Erik. They spent considerable time at the fortress. Their son, King Magnus IV of Sweden (Magnus VII of Norway), spent much time at the fortress as well.

The fortress was augmented during the late 16th and early 17th century on order by King Christian IV of Denmark. However, after the Treaty of Brömsebro in 1645 the fortress became Swedish. It was used as a military installation until 1830 and as a prison from the end of the 17th Century until 1931.

It is currently used as a museum and bed and breakfast as well as private accommodation. The moat of the fortress is said to be inhabited by a small lake monster. In August 2006, a couple of witnesses claimed to have seen the monster emerge from the dark water and devour a duck. The creature is described as brown, hairless and with a 40 cm long tail.