9 Jonsklosterets Kirken (St John’s Monastery)

St John’s church was situated on the site of present-day Tårnplassen (‘Tower Square’) (photo Justin Kroesen)
St John’s church was situated on the site of present-day Tårnplassen (‘Tower Square’) (photo Justin Kroesen)

St John’s church, also called St Hans, belonged to the Augustinian abbey of St John which was founded before 1180. Very little is known about what the church and monastery looked like.

Tårnplassen street name (photo Justin Kroesen)
Tårnplassen street name (photo Justin Kroesen)

Archaeological excavations in 1895-1896 found traces of the church near Fortunen street between present-day Strandgaten and Tårnplassen. The monastery probably extended to the south of the church, on the site of today’s Tårnplassen.

The monastery was never very wealthy, and its decline started as early as the fourteenth century. The monastery was dissolved c. 1450.

Its church (Jonskirken), however, remained standing and survived the Reformation as a parish church. It burned down in 1561. Parts of the tower survived, and lived on as a fireguard tower until 1702, giving its name to present-day Tårnplassen (‘Tower Square’).

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Follow Valkendorfsgaten from Tårnplassen in northwestern direction past Østre Murallmenningen, then walk straight through Strandgaten until you reach Nykirken (distance c. 700 m)   

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