Stavanger Cathedral is the oldest cathedral in Norway and the seat of the Bishop of Stavanger who leads the Diocese of Stavanger, Construction started around the 1100s and completed in 1150.
The cathedral was dedicated to Saint Swithun, an early Bishop of Winchester and subsequently patron saint of Winchester Cathedral. The church was initially the seat of the Diocese of Stavanger within the Roman Catholic Church until the Protestant Reformation.
Stavanger was ravaged by fire in 1272, and the cathedral suffered heavy damage. It was later rebuilt under Bishop Arne, and the Romanesque Cathedral was enlarged in the Gothic style.
The Cathedral had a number of Renovation, in 1860, the Cathedral’s Interior and Exterior were considerably altered, the stone walls were plastered, due to the changes, most of the Cathedral lost its medieval appearance. Some of the latest restorations of the Cathedral was conducted in 1999 by a Scottish Craftsman, Andrew Lawrenceson Smith.
- The cathedral was consecrated to Saint Svitun, the local patron saint who was an early Bishop of Winchester.
- Stavanger Cathedral was heavy damaged during the Stavanger fire in 1272.
- In 1682, King Christian V decided to move Stavanger’s episcopal seat to Kristiansand, Kristiansand Cathedral. However, on Stavanger’s 800th anniversary in 1925, King Haakon VII appointed Jacob Christian Petersen (1870-1964) to serve as Stavanger’s first bishop in nearly 250 years.
- The only medieval church in Norway to have retained its original style.
- The gothic styled cathedral is hugely influenced by Anglo-Norman architecture.
Stavanger Cathedral is located in the centre of Stavanger.
From the Stavanger Train Station is a two minutes walk