Naantali Church

Naantali, Finland

The Naantali Church was originally part of the Catholic Convent of St. Bridget. The convent was built between years 1443 and 1462 and church probably later in the end of 15th century. Nowadays the church is the only remaining building of the convent, which was closed during Reformation in 1540s. Naantali Church is damaged several times by fire and the present interior is mostly from the modern times except the pulpit (1622) and artefacts. There are lot of medieval items in church, for example crucifix from the monastery, wooden statues and magnificent altarpiece.

The church is situated in the old town of Naantali, which is mostly built in the 18th and 19th centuries. Finnish National Board of Antiquities has named the church and old town area as national built heritage.

Comments

Your name

Website (optional)



Details

Founded: 1443-1462
Category: Religious sites in Finland
Historical period: Middle Ages (Finland)

Rating

4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Aleksandr Haikara (2 years ago)
Ok
Marko M (2 years ago)
Naantalin keskiaikainen kivikirkko on aina omanlaisensa nähtävyys, onhan se Turun Tuomiokirkon jälkeen toiseksi suurin keskiaikainen kivikirkkomme. Alunperin kirkko rakennettiin kirkonmäellä sijainneen katolisen Birgittalaisluostarin kirkoksi. Luostarin rakennukset purettiin jo 1600-luvulla kuninkaan määräyksestä, mutta kirkko onneksi on edelleen pystyssä. Harmillisesti osuttiin juuri Naantalin musiikkijuhlien aikaan paikalle, ja soittajien harjoittelun vuoksi lähempi sisäkuvaaminen jäi edelleen odottamaan hamaan tulevaisuuteen.
jian gu (2 years ago)
As often it is, the church literally takes the highest ground there.
Alan Pembshaw (3 years ago)
A very beautiful church set in a lovely parkland. Worth walking through the cemetry
Guillaume Jacquemet (4 years ago)
Nice little church with excellent view on the sea and the Moomin island.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Hagios Demetrios

The Church of Saint Demetrius, or Hagios Demetrios, is the main sanctuary dedicated to Saint Demetrius, the patron saint of Thessaloniki. It is part of the site Palaeochristian and Byzantine Monuments of Thessaloniki on the list of World Heritage Sites by UNESCO since 1988.

The first church on the spot was constructed in the early 4th century AD, replacing a Roman bath. A century later, a prefect named Leontios replaced the small oratory with a larger, three-aisled basilica. Repeatedly gutted by fires, the church eventually was reconstructed as a five-aisled basilica in 629–634. This was the surviving form of the church much as it is today. The most important shrine in the city, it was probably larger than the local cathedral. The historic location of the latter is now unknown.

The church had an unusual shrine called the ciborium, a hexagonal, roofed structure at one side of the nave. It was made of or covered with silver. The structure had doors and inside was a couch or bed. Unusually, it did not hold any physical relics of the saint. The ciborium seems to have been a symbolic tomb. It was rebuilt at least once.

The basilica is famous for six extant mosaic panels, dated to the period between the latest reconstruction and the inauguration of the Byzantine Iconoclasm in 730. These mosaics depict St. Demetrius with officials responsible for the restoration of the church (called the founders, ktetors) and with children. An inscription below one of the images glorifies heaven for saving the people of Thessalonica from a pagan Slavic raid in 615.

Thessaloniki became part of the Ottoman Empire in 1430. About 60 years later, during the reign of Bayezid II, the church was converted into a mosque, known as the Kasımiye Camii after the local Ottoman mayor, Cezeri Kasım Pasha. The symbolic tomb however was kept open for Christian veneration. Other magnificent mosaics, recorded as covering the church interior, were lost either during the four centuries when it functioned as a mosque (1493–1912) or in the Great Thessaloniki Fire of 1917 that destroyed much of the city. It also destroyed the roof and upper walls of the church. Black-and-white photographs and good watercolour versions give an idea of the early Byzantine craftsmanship lost during the fire.

Following the Great Fire of 1917, it took decades to restore the church. Tombstones from the city"s Jewish cemetery - destroyed by the Greek and Nazi German authorities - were used as building materials in these restoration efforts in the 1940s. Archeological excavations conducted in the 1930s and 1940s revealed interesting artifacts that may be seen in a museum situated inside the church"s crypt. The excavations also uncovered the ruins of a Roman bath, where St. Demetrius was said to have been held prisoner and executed. A Roman well was also discovered. Scholars believe this is where soldiers dropped the body of St. Demetrius after his execution. After restoration, the church was reconsecrated in 1949.