Manor from Heaven
Brahetrolleborg Church on South Funen doesn't look like an average parish church. Tall and narrow, it dominates the entire estate. Together, the manor and church comprise Scandinavia's best preserved Cistercian abbey. The Cistercians emerged in the 12th…
Building abbeys was a lengthy business. It took over 200 years to finish Brahetrolleborg. The changing architectural ideals of the Middle Ages are therefore reflected in the buildings. The east gable of the church is from about 1250 with Romanesque arched windows, but after building work stopped, new builders were put to work and modern Gothic curves were added with pointed tops. When the church wall facing the cloisters was finished in about 1300, trends had already left the project behind. New shapes for windows and vaulting are introduced based on foreign inspiration. The monks reach a temporary compromise. They couldn't leave the abbey half built, after all. The church was finally finished in about 1450 after a less ambitious plan was devised without an aisle.
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