|Præstø, the city square, photo: stig bachmann nielsen, naturplan.dk|
Præstø is a small cosy town with a pretty situation along the southeastern coast of Zealand, the largest island in the Danish archipelago. The town was founded upon an island and the connection to land was a bridge from the west. The bridge existed up till 1804 where it was replaced by a dam. The old part of town is still demarcated to the south by a green wedge around the river Tubæk, and the western terrain rises almost like a bank around town.
Præstø is first of all today a pretty trading town with cosy cafés and a lively harbour environment. Many places conform the history of the old town, a town with small cobblestones in the streets and the coherent pastel-painted houses. Today's town is cosy with crooked streets and the almost unspoiled urban environment, the quintessence of the idyl in a Danish provincial town. Præstø been used as a setting in several Danish films.
* The Antonite kloster in Præstø was a branch of the mother kloster Morkær in North Germany. The monks took care of people who were afflicted by Sct Antonius-fire, a sort of gangrene, which was one of the worst scourges in the Middle Ages. The disease was caused by bread-corn, which was poisoned by a fungus (Claviceps purpurea) The Antonite klosters were very important for sick people, like the hospitals of Sct Jørgen )Sct George) were for the leprous.
Præstø has a museum for the fire protection history: Dansk Brandværnhistorisk Museum, with a collection of horse-drawn fire pumps, the earliest from 1761 - and with a historic collection from the fire teams and from local history. A museum, called "Den lille By" (The small Town), has a collection of over 200 dolls from 1790-1930.
The pottery Rødeled west of the old city section was established in 1898 and is the oldest pottery in Denmark. It is today both a museum, a workshop and a boutique.
Source: Danmarks Købstæder, Søren Olsen, Politikens forlag 2000.
photo 2013 : grethe bachmann