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Around Lake Mälaren, Sweden

Fors Kyrka, Eskilstuna

 
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Fors Kyrka
Fors Kyrka

When you visited the Fors Kyrka, the leaning angle of the tower is what strikes you at once. It's not leaning as much as the tower of Pisa, but it is leaning over a lot. The tower to this church was added probably in the middle of the 14th century and has had a considerable lean from the time that it is build. To prevent the tower from leaning over more, they put wedges on the outside of the north wall.

The Fors Kyrka is not the first church on this spot. The original wooden church was destroyed by fire, but it was rebuilt in stone in the second half of the 11th century. There are still some traces of this stone church and they are visible in the north wall and the west wall.

The votive ship in the Fors Kyrka

The votive ship in the Fors Kyrka
The votive ship in the Fors Kyrka

Let's start the tour through the interior of the church at the porch on the ground floor of the tower. There are some interesting objects to be seen in this porch. The oldest one is the foot of a granite font from the 12th century. In the wall you can see the bigger part of a gravestone of Peregrinus, a priest from the Johanniterorder that died in 1338. The stone probably came from the Johanniter monastry, and was brought to the Fors Kyrka around 1600. There are also bits of frescos remaining in the porch, but they are not as clearly to see though.

The only picture I took here (it's very bad lighting in this part of the church, so hard to take any pictures) is the votive ship dating from 1690 hanging from the ceiling.

Five figures with Saint Eskil

Five figures from 1475 with Saint Eskil
Five figures from 1475 with Saint Eskil

These five figures are originally from the medieval church altar. Looking from left to right you can see a Saint Dominic, Saint Birgitta, Saint Eskil (holding the three stones, as a symbol as he was stoned to death), an unknown female saint and on the right a holy king, either Saint Olov or Saint Erik. The sculptures are from around 1475.

Anna the third

Anna the third
Anna the third

This is a statue of Anna the third from around 1400. I find it amazing to see all these old wood carvings and statues in the church. So much history and it is still there in the church. Not hidden away in any museum, but in their original place. The good part is that the doors to the church are open, so you can visit it when you like. That sunny summer afternoon there was no one else in the church, just us. I thoroughly enjoyed it, taking in all the history that was clearly visible all around me.

The pulpit

Pulpit
Fors Kyrka : the pulpit

This is a picture of the pulpit in the Fors Kyrka from around 1650. It was donated by the Lohe family (one of the richest and powerful families in the history of Eskilstuna), together with quite a few other artefacts. The pulpit has wooden sculptures on it that represent the four evangelists, Jesus Christ and Paulus.

Fors Kyrka: some more views

In the photo below, on the left side, you can have a closer look at the altar, which was donated by the Lohe family. It is an oil painting made by the French painter Eustace Lesueur in 16th century. Below, on the right side, you can see one of the glass stained windows.

the altar
the altar
glass stained window
glass stained window

Gravestones

Gravestones
Gravestones

Like I've seen in many old churches, there are gravestones inside this church as well. I always find it interesting to read them, to try and find out how old they are, and read the inscription. That's not always easy though, as they have been faded by the many people walking through the church.

Coats of arms

The Lohe coat of arms in the Fors Kyrka The Lohe coat of arms in the Fors Kyrka
Coat of arms of Conrad Gustav Siegroth
Coat of arms of Conrad Gustav Siegroth

 

There have been many alterations to the church over the years. One is them was made by the wealthy family of Lohe, they build a crypt on the northside of the church around 1700. Many of the Lohe family have been buried in this crypt. One of the things that still reminds of the Lohe family is this coat of arms that you can see in the crypt.

In the second picture you can see the coat of arms of Conrad Gustav Siegroth (1694 - 1762) that is located close to the exit of the church.

Saint Martin on the horse

Saint Martin on the horse
Saint Martin on the horse

The last picture of the interior of the church that I want to show you is a sculpture called "Saint Martin till häst" (Saint Martin on the horse). It's close to the exit in the church and it was probably made in the second half of the 14th century.

Sculpture with Saint Eskil

Saint Eskil
Saint Eskil

I've mentioned Saint Eskil quite a few times by now on this page, and here he is another time. You can see this sculpture outside the church, in the park. I can't really say Iike the statue though, it's not that beautiful or spectacular to see. But as it is about Saint Eskil I thought I should mention it.

More about Eskilstuna

Skjulsta recreation area
Faktori museum
  • Faktori museum
  • Fors Kyrka
  • Parken Zoo
  • Photo impression of Eskilstuna
  • Evening photos
  • Main page Eskilstuna
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