Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Froslev and Elsewhere: Stair-step Church Towers - Denmark

Steeples - Stair-step in Denmark
Step-Gable Style 
Corbie Style 
Crow Step Style

Countries develop their own styles of any architecture, but this stair-step or step-gable style for a church tower is a puzzle in Denmark and Sweden.  We believe these are Protestant. Lutheran is or was the official church?  These originated as plain towers in medieval times, later often modified to serve as church adjuncts and still good for defense, as originally intended. This was seen in passing.

This is also called Corbie Style, from the Scots meaning "crow", or Crow Steps, and date from the 15th Century see  Call it trapvegel in Dutch.  There is an illustration there of such a tower built by a medieval Danish knight in Sweden.

Another tower with this style stair-step is on a family farm in the town of Froslev, the one located on Zealand.  There is a different pattern of window openings on the side, and the front design is more plain. We do not think it is a church at all.

See the old, sagging roof, with the weight of tiles, but still strong. This rural Froslev is near Store Heddinge, south of Koge, on Zealand. There is another, more famous, Froslev, on Jutland - the location of the World War II internment camp.

The farmhouse and barn are close, right off the same barnyard. We had stopped to ask directions, thinking that we were at the correct Froslev for the internment camp - wrong.

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