Saturday, 29 May 2010

My latest article: Whatever happened to Mrs Schøller?

Stiftsgården, the royal residence in Trondheim, is not only one of Norway’s best examples of rococo architecture, but also the largest wooden mansion in Northern Europe. It was built between 1774 and 1778 by an unknown architect for Cecilia Christine Schøller as a manifestation of her wealth and power.
But Mrs Schøller herself never really lived there; hardly was her mansion finished before she left Trondheim for good. Where did she go?
In an article in Adresseavisen today (external link) I trace her footsteps to Copenhagen, where she was closer to the court and the powerful elite, but also to her friends. She died in her house at Østergade 34 on 19 April 1786 and was laid to rest in Nikolaj Church.
But her journey was not over, for the church was severely damaged in the city fire in 1795. Mrs Schøller’s remains were moved to the Garrison Cemetery and later again to Assistens Cemetery, Copenhagen’s answer to Père Lachaise, where her grandson Stie Tønsberg Schøller von Krogh erected one of the city’s most unusual tombstones.

1 comment:

  1. It is rare to see a grave monument that is a piece of art or unique sculpture. How much more interesting the history of the deceased becomes with such a marker. And in a way, in makes the cemetery a sort of art park. I think it is part of modern life that we very quickly make such decisions related to death, and forget about them, rather than give thoughtful consideration to a monument that is creative, original, and personal. This one is very special and draws a visitor to learn more about the person who is buried there.
    Terrific post.


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