The Noor mansion or castle (Noors slott) is mentioned in manuscripts for the first time in 1311. In the 16th century, the crown owned the estate and then, until the 1680s, ownership was held by the Tott, Stöör and Månesköld families. The mansion was confiscated as part of the reduction by King Charles XI in 1686, whereafter it was used as a royal hunting lodge. In 1689 King Charles XI sold the mansion to his adviser Count Nils Gyldenstolpe. He rebuilt the mansion in Swedish Carolean Style, the style of fashion in Sweden during the period of the two Carolean kings, based of drawings by Jean de la Vallée. Between 1761 and 1918 Noor mansion was owned by members of the noble Hermelin family.
Nobel laureate Verner von Heidenstam wrote his historical novel The Caroleans (Karolinerna) at Noor mansion in 1897, during a spell of one year at the mansion to benefit from its late 17th Century atmosphere.
Noor mansion was renovated 1996-97 and is now a privately owned Conference Centre.References:
The Goseck circle is a Neolithic circle structure. It may be the oldest and best known of the Circular Enclosures associated with the Central European Neolithic. It also may be one of the oldest Solar observatories in the world. It consists of a set of concentric ditches 75 metres across and two palisade rings containing gates in places aligned with sunrise and sunset on the solstice days.
Its construction is dated to c. 4900 BC, and it seems to have remained in use until 4600 BC. This corresponds to the transitional phase between the Neolithic Linear Pottery and Stroke-ornamented ware cultures. It is one of a larger group of so-called Circular Enclosures in the Elbe and Danube region, most of which show similar alignments.
Excavators also found the remains of what may have been ritual fires, animal and human bones, and a headless skeleton near the southeastern gate, that could be interpreted as traces of human sacrifice or specific burial ritual. There is no sign of fire or of other destruction, so why the site was abandoned is unknown. Later villagers built a defensive moat following the ditches of the old enclosure.
The Goseck ring is one of the best preserved and extensively investigated of the many similar structures built at around the same time. Traces of the original configuration reveal that the Goseck ring consisted of four concentric circles, a mound, a ditch, and two wooden palisades. The palisades had three sets of gates facing southeast, southwest, and north. At the winter solstice, observers at the center would have seen the sun rise and set through the southeast and southwest gates.
Archaeologists generally agree that Goseck circle was used for observation of the course of the Sun in the course of the solar year. Together with calendar calculations, it allowed coordinating an easily judged lunar calendar with the more demanding measurements of a solar calendar.