Sunday, May 6, 2012

St Ingrid´s convent

I´m not so much a genealogist as I´m a historian. By now I´m very intersted in Swedish churches and I´ve ended the first book "Kyrkornas Hemligheter", in English "Secrets of the churches". It´ll be two more books about this topic. So I can tell you a lot about our churches and its history. And also about our cloisters.
The fist Swedish convent was founded in 1281 in Skänninge, a place in the south of the province Östergötland. It was a Dominican convent called St Ingrids. Her full name was Ingrid Elovsdotter and she got a donation from her brother Johan Elovsson. The convent was raised next to St Martins church.

The Dominicans, whose most important duty was to preach  the "right Christian faith", often located their convents in towns with large populations. Already in the elevth and twelfth centuries Skänninge was a central place and a juncture for several main roads.
Archaeological investigations has been carried out at St Ingrid´s convent and they have shown that it has a long history.

In 1929 an excavation of the southern parts of the convent was conducted. It shows among  other things that the church was 25 metres long and 11 metres wide. Several finds were for exampel around 50 coins, rosary beads, pilgrim badges and remains from painted church windows.
Sadly Ingrid died already one year after she founded the convent. But we can still enjoy this beautiful place.

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