Sunday, August 14, 2016

The first morning on a holiday tour to the Thy district...

On a country road through Himmerland 

On our way to Thy via Himmerland and Aggersund we passed a fine little Romanesque church, Stenild church, by the country road, built in pretty carved granite ashlars. The broad tower was in red bricks and ashlars.The earliest artifact in the church is a very large Romanesque granite baptismal font, a socalled lion font with impressive reliefs of lions. Between the lions are reliefs of human faces. The church has two bells, one from John Taylor and Co, England in 1959,  and the other from Århus in 1651.

Aggersund Bridge, a connection between Himmerland and Thy.
 The bridge at Aggersund is from 1942. It  is a pretty arch bridge with a double link span in the middle, which is opened by the watchman, when ships pass Aggersund on their way to and fro the town of Aalborg. The bridge has a fine placement in the flat landscape in the western and narrowest part of the Limfjorden

A view to a Salt Marsh by Aggersund

A salt march is marked by the nearness of the sea. The air-contents of salt is high, and the marsh is often flooded by heavy winter storms. This causes a flora, dominated by species which can tolerate salt. The salt marshes are habitats for waders, ducks and seagulls. In the winter they are also a foraging area for some birds of prey.
The Danish salt marshes are protected nature types. They represent only 1% of the total area in Denmark. The increased interest for and the increased funding for landscaping has resulted in a positive development of the management of the Forest and Nature Agency's areas of the salt marshes. In several places are planned or carried through nature restoration of earlier salt marches.

After the Aggersund Bridge we have left the Himmerland district -  and we are now in Thy, which among many other things has a National Park -and not at least the North Sea!

Coffee break at Aggersborg, a very special place with one of the Danish Viking Trelleborgs, Aggersborg. There is no castle or buildings left, only a large circular grassy site.

Aggersborg is the largest Viking fortress in Denmark with an inner diameter of 240 meter. The whole plan along the outer edge of the moat is 299 meter broad. The site is difficult to date since underneath is a village with houses from German Iron Age, but it was probably built approximately the same time as the other trelleborgs in Denmark, most likely around year 980, when Harald Bluetooth and/ or Svend Forkbeard ruled the country. The fortress was built during 1-2 years and was only used for about 5-20 years.
 The situation of Aggersborg was a protected one and yet accessible by ship. This should be considered in the light of that the Limfjorden at this time was open for ships in three directions: west, east like today, but also to the north through the access Sløjen. Besides this the Aggersborg was placed by one of the three passages of the ancient Hærvej across the Limfjorden. It is not known if Aggersborg was a power center for control of trade and internal feuds, or if it was a barrack/ training camp in connection to Svend Forkbeard's raids to England.

Here you can see a piece of the circle. On the photo of the Aggersborggård you can see the whole circle of Aggersborg from air.


 Among many archaeological finds at Aggersborg was a fine and heavy gold bracelet. (now at the National Museum) A copy of the bracelet is at the Minimuseum at Aggersborg.

Aggersborggård is a Danish manor which history goes farthest back in time, to the year 1086. Aggersborg was a king's manor from 1086 till 1579. The present farm lies in the edge of the moat of the Viking fortress Aggersborg.

Aggersborg kirke
North of the mighty Aggersborg site lies Aggersborg kirke, probably built in the 1100s. On the walls of the church are some runic inscriptions. The church is open daily.

Minimuseum by the church. There are no traces of the Viking longhouses on the site but north of Aggersborg by the church lies a small museum where it is shown how the fortress looked and how the longhouses were built.

photo August 2016 : grethe bachmann
gold bracelet and Aggersborggård: wikipedia.

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