Koldinghus is a Danish royal castle in the town of Kolding on the south central part of the Jutland peninsula. The castle was founded in the 13th century and was expanded since with many functions ranging from fortress, royal residency, ruin, museum, and the location of numerous wartime negotiations.

The castle was founded by Christoffer I in 1268 but the oldest remaining part of buildings is the north side facing the castle lake originally built by king Christoffer III (1441–1448). The western side was later built by king Christian I (1448–1481). King Christian III built the south side and the small towers in the courtyard.

Today the restored castle functions as a museum containing collections of furniture from the 16th century to present, Roman and Gothic church culture, older Danish paintings, crafts focused on ceramics and silver and shifting thematized exhibitions.

Relateret billede

In 1250 Abel of Slesvig succeeded his older brother, Eric IV, as king of Denmark after the latter was murdered. Abel sent word for his son Valdemar studying in Paris to join him in Denmark for the crowning ceremony. During his trip home Valdemar was apprehended by the Archbishop of Cologne who demanded a ransom for his release. Abel did not have the required funds to have his son released and reasoning that it was Abel, not Valdemar, who was king of Denmark the Danish people had little sympathy for the predicament of their new king and no funds were thus raised.

In 1252 Abel suddenly died during an expedition to Friesland leaving the kingdom without a leader. The natural order of things would be to elect Valdemar as king but this seemed a poor choice since he was preoccupied in a prison cell in Cologne. This prompted the pragmatic election of Abel’s brother, Christoffer I, as the new king. Valdemar was released one year later when his family had finally succeeded to collect the funds for his ransom. Upon his return to Denmark Valdemar immediately challenged Christoffer for the throne but found little support. It was finally agreed that Valdemar would become Duke of Schleswig. This not being the optimal outcome for Valdemar several wars between the king of Denmark and the Duke of Schleswig ensued until it was finally decided to build a fortress to defend the southern borders against its troublesome neighbour.

After Christoffer I died in 1259, his son Eric was elected king. Eric V was just ten years old at the time and faced claims to the throne from Abel’s sons. It was in the context of this dynasytic intrigue the Koldinghus was built. Between 1267 and 1268 two towns on the border between the kingdom of Denmark and the Duchy of Schleswig: Kolding and Ribe. At Kolding, a hill in the centre of the town was chosen as the site for a castle. A moat was dug and wooden palisades erected. This was later to become Koldinghus.

Billedresultat for Koldinghus


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