Ringebu Stave Church was built in the first half of the 13th century. The church is first mentioned in 1270, although it can be older. It was rebuilt into a cruciform church around 1630 by master-builder Werner Olsen and in 1631 received its characteristic red tower. Of the original church only the nave remains, with free-standing posts in the inner area.Later restoration brought it back a bit closer to its original shape in 1921.
The church was painted in 1717, but only the lower half of the walls were done, since the ceiling at that time was lower. At one point the church was painted white within, but during the restoration work in 1921 the church interior was restored to its original colouring.
There have been some archaeological surveys of the ground under the church. The last one took place in 1980 - 1981. These surveys have resulted in the finding of about 900 old coins, mostly from the medieval times, especially from the period 1217 - 1263.
Post holes from an older church has also been found. The post church is assumed to be a forerunner of the stave church. The earth-bound posts of these churches were planted directly into the ground, and therefore they were exposed to humidity which caused them to rot over the years.References:
Sirmione castle was built near the end of the 12th century as part of a defensive network surrounding Verona. The castle was maintained and extended first as part of the Veronese protection against their rivals in Milan and later under the control of the Venetian inland empire. The massive fortress is totally surrounded by water and has an inner porch which houses a Roman and Medieval lapidary. From the drawbridge, a staircase leads to the walkways above the walls, providing a marvellous view of the harbour that once sheltered the Scaliger fleet. The doors were fitted with a variety of locking systems, including a drawbridge for horses, carriages and pedestrians, a metal grate and, more recently, double hinged doors. Venice conquered Sirmione in 1405, immediately adopting provisions to render the fortress even more secure, fortifying its outer walls and widening the harbour.
Thanks to its strategical geographical location as a border outpost, Sirmione became a crucial defence and control garrison for the ruling nobles, retaining this function until the 16th century, when its role was taken up by Peschiera del Garda.