The Churches of Gotland

HEJDEBY

The little church was built in three stages during the 13th century but in spite of this it shows a harmoniously proportioned architecture. At the thorough restoration about 1970 there appeared under plaster and paintings from later times a magnificent series of apostles and other figures from about 1260-70 on all the walls of the chancel and the nave; around the rood arch is a composition with the Coronation of the Virgin at the top and several saints at the sides. Here the painter has made a curious iconographical mistake: next to the Coronation he has put John the Baptist and the Virgin-as in a representation of the Last Judgement-, thus making the Virgin adore herself! The paintings are attributed to the prominent "Michael master" and a helpmate, later to make a similar decoration by himself in Lärbro. Some 15th century paintings by the "Passion master" had to yield to the works of the "Michael master"; only St George and St Martin have been left.

Photo Hans Hemlin

Text Dr. Bengt G Söderberg


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