Monday, May 5, 2014

Vik. Hopperstad Interior, Hopperstad Stave Church. Colors in the Dim

Comparative stave church experiences. 
Choose Vik's Hopperstad

Vik is remote, but two of Norway's loveliest are here.  Find Hopperstad Stave Church and Hove stone church. Vik offers more than Big Borgund's stave church and its tour buses, if you like a quiet contemplation instead of gang activities. There is peace at Vik, at least for our visit. We only encountered a handful of other car-visitors, as we were about to leave. I understand tour boats arrive off and on, but even the water is at a distance. Sognefjord is big tourist business, see http://www.sognefjord.no/SogneFjord/Sognefjordguiden2014_Eng.pdf  Vik is one corner of it that (we think) is best approached by car.

  • Hopperstad was founded in 1130-40, on the foundations of an older church whose piers rotted. Usually the case for earliest wooden churches. 
  • In the 17th Century, changes lengthened the nave, added a bell tower. There is a burial stone, a painted inscription. And deterioration. Then, in 1880, the Society for the Preservation of Norwegian Monuments bought the building,, and architect Peter Andreas Blix 1831-1901 made it his life's work to preserve, recreate, conserve, rebuild. Search, but the Norwegian downloads and translations take too much time.

So, is Vik old?  Yes. Untouched?  No. Re-imagined, yes, and inspired by Borgund. It is one of the oldest stave churches, with Urnes built at about the same time.  http://www.stavechurch.com/en/hopperstad-2/ and inspired by Borgund in its reconstruction, see http://www.sognefjord.no/en/Product/?TLp=458482.

Hopperstad at Vik, our interior gallery:

1.  Pulpit area focus.  No lectern, perhaps the domini just stood under the canopy?


Area above the pulpit area, detail of illustration placement.


It was dark inside. No lights. None, just the doorway; except for workmen up in the rafters, aimed at their poundings. Sense things here untouched? Dark inside. So dark. To preserve the colors? Our photos are jimmied afterwards for light, aimed and snapped without knowing what the photos would show -- potluck there in the dim.



These must have been repainted in the renovations of the late 1800's?  Need more info.


Keep turning in the dark and click.


2.  Roof structure -- keel-like, fitting for seafaring heritage people.

Then, a light!  Up there.  Down here we were still in the dark, and aimed the camera straight up at the roofline, with a gallery to the right.  There was a workman up a ladder were there, with a little focused set of spots on the work area.


3.  Why Saint Andrew's Cross up at the gallery?

As at Borgund stave church, the X motif probably stands for Saint Andrew, crucified with the cross on its side arm. Why the veneration of Andrew, usually found in Slavic areas, eastern Europe to Kiev and the like, see http://nikowy.homepage.t-online.de/08_andr.pdf Delve into Norwegians and medieval church history, at http://anglicanhistory.org/lutherania/gilbertson_norwegian.html/and still find no answer as to this particular interest in Andrew's X cross.



4.  Vik in the past.

Vik had been a broadly influential commercial, early era and later a thriving Viking center for centuries before Christianity, see http://vikjavev.no/omvik/historie.php?spr=en, with many burial mounds in the area. Its location, remote and dangerous by road, easy only by boat, makes sense for it as a longstanding haven.  We noticed no mounds or other indications of history, as tourist signs for points of interest may not gibe with farmer's privacy interests.  Agree. We have to go back.

5.  Altar area. Painted reredos.

A Reredos, ornamental screen or folding (for fast removal in case of disaster) painting arrangement, in later eras. The decorated area behind the altar.


What does the reredos say?

6.  Ego burials.  One prominent memorial stone, on floor at entry.

An 17th Century burial stone is at the front entry.  Burial stone, Hopperstad Stave Church, Vik, Norway


There is a painted marker to the side showing 1698 and a Latin painted inscription that says ...  what?




Other writings at Hopperstad:  I understand that a runic inscription is at Hopperstad, that we missed that looks like "rrrar", see it at http://www.arild-hauge.com/esecreter.htm/
Is it inside, in the dark, or outside in the ambulatory?


7.  Near the pulpit area:  Gothicy script Latin saying, again, what?



Translation opportunities abound, here three approaches.

7.1.  Our own deciphering Latinate mash:

D.O.M.A. Terrenis depositis molestis hic subto feriantar ofsa M. Ivari Eric i LeGangri (all this is guesswork, see below) a roada Pastoris sfemate inclyto natate solum vicina, Le kangriam animi, formatrices schola agnovit Bergensem, es Olympiada in Dania Portuana, unde yost bi ennii in extereris decurjum, lingvaru, moz ac artiuna stirchis instrudise onlio de lise recte judicantui, meruit applausg. Hinc ad ascru Ministerii Wigensis munas docate shrek sibi habuit legem nos div glorias et Pacochianiz salutem, ist is og nate [something in Greek? Xocguinocotl?} ut sibi ectaz Sognenfui Ropolitura decrevering Supints Mag;yterii titulii Lyceum Kasniense, legationes publice in Dania functione un osus Dioceseos B. Clericasg, utque coram augiltiss Septentrionis Menocha felicitif pedita ad stios reduze spreto mdo totus in libris, tot in precito, civvis y delse, menin of coelum sitire studuit, Ita Ano Christos 1702 atatis suce oemine conjugis mari novem surculoruz parens, prisax pietatis Praeco mento Chriconfilg in mortal esse desiit. Animus Paradisg, excuvias humus, faman servabit, posteromemoria axe saxo prennior.
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 7.2.   Unauthorized nontranslation: 

The Defense of Marriage Act, earthly, left here bothered M. Ivari and Eric LeGangri on the road to the Pastor who had been born in this vicinity, and lived with a kangaroo, and with a scholar from Bergen, now an Olyjpian in Denmark town of Portuana, around and so on and so on....

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7. 3. Online translator: translation du jour:

"D.O.M.A. Earthly laying aside annoyance this subto feriantar ofsa M. Ivari Hedgehog i LeGangri all this this guesswork see below a roada A fee for using a pasture sfemate to bend birthday land neighbor Le kangriam at heart formatrices school to know again Bergensem , are Olympiada upon Dania Harbour , whence yost bi ennii upon extereris to sing lingvaru moz and artiuna stirchis instrudise onlio about lise recte judicantui meruit applausg. From this place to ascru Ministerii Wigensis munas docate shrek to them to have legem we div fame and Pacochianiz advantageous ist this og born something upon Greek? Xocguinocotl? ©) when to them ectaz Sognenfui Ropolitura decrevering Supints Magyterii ; to call Lyceum Kasniense , office of legate of the people upon Dania functione un osus Dioceseos B. Clericasg utque in the presence of augiltiss Septentrionis Menocha happiness foot to stios to lead back to scorn mdo whole upon book , so many upon to anticipate civvis y delse menin of coelum thirsting for to be diligent , And so Ano Christos atatis suce oemine wedlock husband nine surculoruz parentis , ancient piety Laudation mind Chriconfilg upon state of being mortal to be desiit. Courage Paradisg excuvias ground , talk being saved posteromemoria axe saxo prennior."

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