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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Norwegian stave church thread

Norwegian stave church thread

A long time ago, about a year and a half ago i wrote a thread about the stavechurchs in Norway. The thread was deleted from this forum the summer last year. So i write a new thread, and i will post all the churches in the Rate Our Architecture forum as well.

History of the stave church

Norwegian Stave Churchs is one of the worlds most impressive churches, and the oldest wooden structures which is left on earth. The first stave churchs was built when the christianity came to Norway in the 10th and 11th century. Between 750 and 1 250 Stave churchs was built between the 10th century and the 15th century. Only 27 is left.

With the introduction of Christianity to Norway in the 10th and 11th centuries, churches of different sizes and forms were built. Some may have been made partly of stones and wood. Some wooden buildings had earth-bound posts, and some had their lower construction set on a frame. Even though the wooden churches had structural differences, they give a recognizable general impression. Formal differences may hide common features of their planning; while apparently similar buildings may turn out to have their structural elements organized differently. Certain basic principles must have been common to all types of building. Basic geometrical figures, numbers that were easy to work with, one or just a few length units and simple ratios, and perhaps proportions as well were among the theoretical aids all builders inherited. The specialist was the man who knew a particular type of building so well that he could systematize its elements in a slightly different way from what was the case in the buildings known hitherto, thus carrying developments a stage further.

List of churches in Norway: (Old classic stave church)
Borgund stave church - Lærdal, Norway
Heddal stave church - Heddal, Norway
Hopperstad stave church - Vik, Norway
Kaupanger stave church - Kaupanger, Norway
Kvernes stave church - Averøy, Norway
Nore stave church - Numedal, Norway
Rødven stave church - Rauma, Norway
Torpo stave church - Ål, Norway
Urnes stave church - Urnes, Norway
Uvdal stave church - Numedal, Norway
Gol stave church - Oslo, Norway
Øye stave church - Valdres, Norway
Høre stave church - Vang, Norway
Eidsborg stave church - Lårdal, Norway
Vågå stave church - Vågå, Norway
Ringebu stave church - Ringebu, Norway
Garmo stave church - Lillehammer/Maihaugen, Norway
Lom stave church - Lom, Norway
Røldal stave church - Røldal, Norway
Flesberg stave church - Flesberg, Norway
Grip stave church - Kristiansund, Norway
Undredal stave church - Undredal, Norway
Rollag stave church - Rollag, Norway
Reinli stave church - Reinli, Norway
Høyjord stave church - Høyjord, Norway
Lomen stave church - Vestre Sildre, Norway
Fåvang stave church - Fåvang, Norway

List of churches in Norway: (New model stave church)
Fantoft stave church - Bergen, Norway
Gol stave church - Gol, Norway

List of international churches:
Wang stave church - Karpacz Górny, Poland
Hedared - Älvsborgs län, Sweden
The Boynton Chapel/ Björklunden Chapel of Baileys Harbor - Wisconsin, USA
The Epcot Center stave church - Disney World, USA
Hahnenklee stave church/ Stabkirche Hahnenklee - Hahnenklee, Germany
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Borgund stave church
Lærdal - Norway

Borgund stave church a triple nave stave church and is Norways best preserved church. The church was probably built in the end of the 12th century, and has not changes structure or had a major reconstruction since that date. The church site shows evidence of a previous building, which can point to a earlier church or perhaps an old heathen temple that had been taken into use as a church. The interior of the church, except for the pulpit and the altarpiece, is mainly free from the after reformatory decorations seen in most other stave churches. An authentic medieval square shaped baptismal font made of soapstone is still a part of the interior.















Link to article in Rate Our Architecture here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Heddal stave church
Notodden - Norway

Heddal stave church is a triple nave stave church and is Norways largest stave churches. The legent say the church was built in three days by Finn which was a troll. This probably happend in the beginning of the 13th century. After the reformation the church was in a very poor condition, and a restoration took place during 1849 - 1851. However, because those who did it didn't have the necessary knowledge and skills, yet another restoration was necessary in 1950's. The interior is marked by the period after the Lutheran Reformation in 1536/37 and is for a great part a result of the restoration that took place in the 1950's.







Link to article in Rate Our Architecture here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Fantoft stave church
Bergen, Norway

Fantoft stave church was originally built in Fortun, a village deep inside the Sogne fjord around year 1150. In the 19th century this church was threaten by demolishion as hundreds of other stave churchs around Norway. But the church was saved, and moved to Fantoft in Bergen in 1883. But in 1994 the church was totally destroyed after a well known satanists burned down the church. A new version was built, and finally completed in 1997. This version is supose to be exactly like the old version.









Link to article in Rate Our Architecture here
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
Øye stave church
Øye, Norway

Øye stave church is a triple nave church and dates to approximately 1150-1200 AD. The church was situated next to the river Vangsmjøsa in Øye. But the river flooded almost every spring and the dead bodies around the church bounce up from their tomb. So the church was moved, this time to a location further away from the river. But in 1747 the church was torn down and hidden away, and a new church was built on this plot. However, in 1935 they reconstructed the new church, and below the floor in the church they found the material from Øye stave church. 156 pieces of the church was used to rebuilt a new stave church which was completed in 1956. Øye stave church si today one of the smallest, and might be one of the oldest reminding stave church in Norway.







Link to article in Rate Our Architecture here.
 

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Let's not forget about Wang church in Karpacz, Poland








By the way these churches are very similar looking to wooden churches of southern Poland (there are hundreds of them dating back to 10th century) which are on UNESCO list as of last year.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Renkinjutsushi said:
Those are some really beautiful looking churches.

Sorry for being a little ignorant, but were there any churches destroyed or vandalized during the Refromation (like the inside was stripped of images)?
I don't know for sure. But it was after the reformation the first stave church was demolished. Some of the churches was used but rebuilt, while in other places they built a new modern church side by side. Soem of the churches was in really bad condition in the centuries after the reformation, so they fell down them self, or was demolished by natural cause.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Garmo stave church
Lillehammer - Norway

This church is situated in a museum park called Maihaugen in Lillehammer. The church originally came from Lom and was built around 1150 AD on a site to a previous church which is belived to be built in 1021 by a viking chieftain. The church consist of 17th and 18th century inventory with a pulpit from Romsdalen. In 1882 however, the church was finally disassembled and sold to Anders Sandvig, who brought it to Lillehammer. However, it was not re-erected at Maihaugen before during 1920-1921, where it resides as one of the most visited stave churches in Norway and a part of the Sandvig Collections at Maihaugen in Lillehammer today.







Link to article in Rate Our Architecture here.
 

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Nice thread :eek:kay:

I've actually been to Høyjord Stavechurch, but I was so young back then that I can't remember how it was :( Such a shame.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
Lom stave church
Lom - Oppland

Lom stave church is a triple nave Stave Church that uses free standing inner columns to support a raised section in the ceiling of the main nave. This type of church is amongst the oldest Stave Churches. The church was first situated in a sub valley to the valley Gudbrandsdal in Oppland County, some 60 kilometers west of Otta.

The church dates to approximately 1150-1200 AD, but was rebuilt into cruciform during the 1600's. The chancel was decorated in 1608, and the nave was enlarged towards west in 1634. The cross section was added in 1663, but this was made in stave like frame work. A complete restoration took also place in 1933, and a smaller one in 1973. This stave church is actually one of just a very few stave churches of which the original medieval crest with a dragon head still survives.





 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
jx said:
didnt some of these churchs get burnt down by the "black metal satanist"? namely, varg vikerness and the Mayhem guys?
can you guys shed some light on this please.
Yes, Varg Vikernes burned down Flesland stave church in 1994. And he has burned down several other churches.
 

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First, thank you Christian for presenting what I think is some of the most extraordinary structures made by humans in Norway. I've been so lucky to see both Heddal and Borgund stavechurches.

jx said:
didnt some of these churchs get burnt down by the "black metal satanist"? namely, varg vikerness and the Mayhem guys?
can you guys shed some light on this please.
Yeah, there were alot of church-burning and other crazy stuff by the satanists in the 90'ies. Only one of them were a stavechurch though, iirc. Varg Vikernes burned some, and then killed one of his bandmembers. For this he is still in jail, but is soon released. From prison he has "converted" to a mix of neo nazism and norse religion, and have started his own sect.......To think that Annie(http://www.bbc.co.uk/music/pop/reviews/anniemal_anniemal.shtml) was together with this guy is....unimaginable!

Edit: I see you were faster than me Christian:eek:kay:
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
NorthStar77 said:
Yeah, there were alot of church-burning and other crazy stuff by the satanists in the 90'ies. Only one of them were a stavechurch though, iirc. Varg Vikernes burned some, and then killed one of his bandmembers. For this he is still in jail, but is soon released. From prison he has "converted" to a mix of neo nazism and norse religion, and have started his own sect.......To think that Annie(http://www.bbc.co.uk/music/pop/reviews/anniemal_anniemal.shtml) was together with this guy is....unimaginable!

Edit: I see you were faster than me Christian:eek:kay:
I knew very little about Varg Vikernes and these burnings of churches, so im glad you posted some more information. :)
 
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