Storkyrkan (Great Church, Stockholm Cathedral), officially Church of St. Nicholas, is the oldest church in Gamla Stan, the old town in central Stockholm. It was first mentioned in 1279 and according to tradition was originally built by Birger Jarl, the founder of the city itself. For nearly four hundred years it was the only parish church in the city, the other churches of comparible antiquity originally built to serve the spiritual needs religious communities (e. g., Riddarholm Church). It became a Lutheran Protestant church in 1527.

The parish church since the Middle Ages, covering the whole island on which the Old Town stands, it has also been the cathedral of Stockholm since the Diocese of Stockholm was created out of the Archdiocese of Uppsala and the Diocese of Strängnäs in 1942. Because of its convenient size and its proximity to the earlier royal castle and the present royal palace it has frequently been the site of major events in Swedish history, such as coronations, royal wedding and royal funerals. The last Swedish king to be crowned here was Oscar II in 1873. Crown Princess Victoria, oldest daughter of King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia, was married to Daniel Westling on 19 June, 2010 at the Storkyrkan, the same date on which her parents were also married in Storkyrkan in 1976.

Inside the church the most famous artefact is the dramatic wooden statue of Saint George and the Dragon attributed to Bernt Notke (1489). The statue, commissioned to commemorate the Battle of Brunkeberg (1471), also serves as a reliquary, containing relics supposedly of Saint George and two other saints.

The church also contains a copy of the oldest known image of Stockholm, the painting Vädersolstavlan ("The Sun Dog Painting"), a 1632 copy of a lost original from 1535. The painting was commissioned by the scholar and reformer Olaus Petri, a 19th century statue of whom is found on the eastern side of the church. It depicts a halo display, e.g. sun dogs, which gives the painting its name and in the 16th century was interpreted as a presage.

The monumental pulpit is the work of Burchard Precht in 1698-1702 and is in a French Baroque style and became the model for a number of other large pulpits in Sweden. The relief on the front of the pulpit itself depicts the story of the Canaanite woman. The door of the pulpit is adorned with a relief of Christ's head, while, its pediment is crowned by a statue of Hope with putti on either side. Below the memorial are the arms of the Funck family who bore the greater cost of the pulpit. Beneath the pulpit and surrounded by an iron railing lies the worn gravestone of Olaus Petri.

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Details

Founded: 1279
Category: Religious sites in Sweden
Historical period: Consolidation (Sweden)

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4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

raffaella pratesi (16 months ago)
Very beautiful, lots of golden details
Bard Stoltz (17 months ago)
It's magical, great history there.
Oksana Sokaliuk (18 months ago)
Storkyrkan (st. Nicolas church) in Stockholm located not far from Royal Palace. This brilliant example of gothic bricks architecture was built by the founder of city Stockholm in XIII-th century and been a wetness of many royal celebration (wedding, coronation, funeral etc) The most famous thing in the church is the wooden statue of St. George ridding a dragon - reminder if the battle of the Bunker, The symbolism is St. George is a Stan Sture (the leader, who won the war), the dragon - the king of Denmark and the princess - Sweden. The statue contains relics of St. Gearge and six others saints. Personally I was impressed by monumentalism of the beauty this church represents! Next time I’ll be around will definitely check it out by myself! #StockholmChurch #SaintNicolasChurch #SaintNicolasChurchStockholm
Przemek Sienkiewicz (2 years ago)
Great statue of St. George. Also very old stone pieces on the floor dating back to 1600.
Fon MP (2 years ago)
Very impressed how beautiful the church is. This place remind me of the church in Skara!
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