Uvdal Stave Church

Nore og Uvdal, Norway

Uvdal Stave Church was originally constructed just after the year 1168, which we know through dendrochronological dating of the pine tree used during the construction. The logs were not completely dry when the construction took place. The church was made on top of the remains of previous church on the site, thought to have been made with the use of imbedded corner column technology at the beginning of the 11th century. This we know from an archeological excavation that took place during 1978. Churches made during the 12th century were usually very small, perhaps no more than 40 square meters in their footprint. They were therefore often expanded, even during the Middle Ages and certainly just before and after the Reformation, which took place during 1537 in Norway.

The nave of the church was first expanded to the west during the Middle Ages, when the original apse of chancel was also removed and the chancel itself elongated. Again, during that period, an extra center column was added to construction. The chancel was torn down again in 1684, when a new and wider chancel was made. This had the same width as the nave. Then, during the period 1721–1723, the church was made into cruciform. A new ridge turret had to be made, to fit the new cruciform. Later, in 1819, a new vestry was added to the north wall of the chancel. The exterior walls were panelled in 1760.

Benches with ornately decorated sidewalls were added to the nave in 1624. The oldest part of the interior was probably richly ornately decorated by painting during 1656, the expansions during 1684 and 1723. Two scary halfmasks are quite visible on the poles of the chancel, and according to myth they were able to capture demons.

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Founded: 1168
Category: Religious sites in Norway

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4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Mike Groth (3 years ago)
Nice little church including several external old structures
Arnfinn Sørensen (3 years ago)
Fint bygdemuseum med tun av gamle bygninger, mulig å se kirken med historiske gjenstander utstilt. Serveringssted og utsalg av litt husflid og bøker. Fint!
Mélody BARRIERE (3 years ago)
Très belle église, comme beaucoup le long de la E40. En revanche nous souhaitions l'admirer de l'extérieur et simplement prendre un café à la boutique ce qui n'a pas du plaire à la dame qui s'occupait de l'accueil et a été particulièrement exécrable et déplacée, venant nous chercher sur le parking pour nous dire qu'il fallait payer pour visiter (on avait bien compris) !! Fort dommage...
Elena Tandberg (3 years ago)
Must see
Jean-Louis Bonnet (5 years ago)
the typical Numedalstavkirke.
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