Tuesday, 19 February 2008

Slesvig (Schleswig)

A nice old street close to the Cathedral in Slesvig.

Our days in Denmark ended with a laid-back New Year's Eve with some of my old friends in Århus. It was nice to catch up, but I didn't really manage to take any noteworthy pictures there, so no visuals. We went back to Germany for a few last days in my parents' place, before flying on to Finland. On our last - and excruciatingly cold and grey - day in Germany my father took us to the town Slesvig (Schleswig in German), which was once part of the Kingdom of Denmark. These days it's a fairly small provincial German town, but there still are some cultural gems there leftover from the Danish days.

First we went to the Cathedral of Slesvig, the oldest parts of which date back to the 12th century. It's a beautiful and cosy church, which houses several pieces of Danish history: The graves of two of our kings, and a very famous altar, which is part of the official Danish cultural canon (list of particularly important cultural works in Danish history).

Inside the beautiful and intimate Cathedral, with Christmas trees still in place.

The celebrated wood carved Bordesholm altar, created by legendary artisan Hans Brüggeman in the years 1514-1521.

The tomb of Danish king Frederik the first, who died while Slesvig was still under Danish rule. Now he rest in modern day Germany, but he still has his Danish coat of arms with him.

Following that we went to the Gottorp (Gottorf in German) Castle, which houses a surprisingly interesting and eclectic museum. Allegedly people come from all over Northern Europe to visit this place. I had never really been aware of it. But I'm really glad we went, although we didn't have enough time there. Below I show a random collection of things that I liked in the museum.

The famous Nydam-boat, which is the oldest row boat ever recovered in Northern Europe. It was in use in the 4th century A.D. It is housed in a modern annex.

Nitoli and Ole in one of the old halls of the castle.

Nitoli in yet another hall. Every hall at Gottorp seem to have a unique flavour to it.

I particularly liked this little everyday hygiene kit, which was used by some person around 1600 years ago. It's a metal container with room for a par of tweezers and an ear cleaner. How neat.

A face with a lot of character. I assume it must have been a decorative piece in a church originally.

Nitoli admiring a great statue.

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