Hamre (50 km from Bergen)

The church of Hamre viewed from the southwest (photo Justin Kroesen)
The church of Hamre viewed from the southwest (photo Justin Kroesen)

The wooden church of Hamre with its impressive west tower was built between 1620 and 1640, although some parts may date back to 1585. It is one of the best preserved churches from the first century after the Reformation in Western Norway.

Interior of the church viewed towards the chancel (photo Justin Kroesen)
Interior of the church viewed towards the chancel (photo Justin Kroesen)

Its predecessor was a medieval stave church which was appointed head church of the entire northern part of what is now Hordaland county.

Baptismal font (c. 1250) and altarpiece (c. 1480) (photos Justin Kroesen)

Medieval survivals in the church’s interior are a baptismal font of soapstone from c. 1250 decorated with four human heads and a small central chest of a late Gothic altarpiece that was probably made in Lübeck around 1480. Two other medieval art works can be seen at the University Museum in Bergen: the damaged Christ figure from a crucifix from c. 1250 and a painted altar frontal from c. 1290.

The altarpiece from 1620 (photo Justin Kroesen)
The altarpiece from 1620 (photo Justin Kroesen)

The large Renaissance altarpiece, of north German inspiration, dates from 1620, while the pulpit was carved in 1640. The chancel screen found its present shape in 1859. The chancel ceiling was painted with Biblical motifs in 1653. The almost life-sized the apostle figures on the chancel walls were carried out in 1867.    

 

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