The Churches of Gotland

GULDRUPE

Already at the end of the 11 th century there was a wooden church here, from which only two fragmentary planks from the portal have been preserved (Gotlands fornsal, Visby). In the dragon coils in the style of the rune stones one can discern parts of a rendering of the Volsung saga: Sigurd killing the dragon Fafner. This motif is also found on several Norwegian stave churches. This wooden church was replaced at the end of the 12th century with a building of cut limestone, to which a tower was added at the beginning of the next century. The Gothic chancel was built at the end of the 13th century. On a side altar is a statue of St Olav enthroned from the latter part of the 13th century. The baptismal font is a work of the 12th century master "Byzantios."


Photo Hans Hemlin

Text Dr. Bengt G Söderberg


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