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The Church

The Medieval Church at Utstein

05. Jan 1965 - 31. Jan 2020

The church was built in the mid-1200s, while the baptismal font by the altar is about 100 years older. It may have been used in an earlier church that stood on the site. The altarpiece, pulpit and other inventory are from the 1600s.

The wooden objects were made by Lauritz Snekker, and Gottfried Hendtzschel from Slesvig-Holstein did the painting. Notice the coats of arms in the medallions on the lower part of the pulpit: they belong to those who sponsored the church’s decoration.

In the medieval period, the church had stained-glass windows that were probably made by artist-craftsmen from Bergen. After lightening stuck the building in 1859, the windows were removed and given to the University Museum of Bergen. Some of these can be seen today in the museum’s church history exhibition.

Church without a roof

We know that the monastery was plundered twice in the early 1500s. Around that time there was also a large fire, which caused much of the roof to collapse. Thus it remained for over 400 years. In 1957 the roof was restored – without the use of spikes or bolts.