Köpings Church

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Address: Kyrkallén 2, 387 50 Köpingsvik, Sverige
Location: Central Öland
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Church environment

Köpings church and cemetery is located along road 136 in the midst of Köping. The area has a very long history and was during the Iron Age, a trading center on the island of Öland. The parish is therefore rich in ancient remains.

Northeast of the church is one of the more remarkable; “Tingsflisan” (flisa equal to Stone) believed to be from the 11th century. This is an almost 10 feet tall stone standing on a hill and with a text in ornamental runic characters saying “Torer and Torsten and Torfast, these brothers raised this stone after their father Gunnfus. God help his soul”.

East of the church is a two-storey building that was constructed in the 1840s, then housing the parish’s first school and parish hall. Today the building is owned by the local historical society, and is among others things used for the societies meetings.

Adjacent to this building is a yellow painted wooden villa. It was built in 1880 as a residence for the teacher but has also been used as a cantor residence. The house is now the parish registrar’s office

North of the cemetery is a row of church stables. When they were built is not known. They represent the remains of all the church stables that once surrounded the church, when the other stables where demolished is not known today.


The Church

In the area around Köping church are several ancient remains, of which a large number are Christian funerary monuments from the 11th century. This makes researchers to believe that there existed a wooden church on the site at this time. According to tradition, the wooden church has been located about 5 meters west of today’s cemetery, but traces of this church have not yet been found.

The first stone church was built in the mid 12th century. At first a chancel and an apse of stone was erected, while the nave appears to have been of wood. But not long after a new nave and a west tower was also built in stone.

During the late 12th and early 13th century the church was rebuilt. A tower was erected in the east so that the church became a pack-saddle church. A Church porch to the south was built in the mid 13th century and a sacristy in the north around the year 1300.

In the early 19th century, after lengthy discussion in the parish, it was decided to demolish the medieval church and build a new one. The drawings were made by Jacob Wulff at the “Överintendentsämbetet” (today The National Property Board of Sweden).

Parts of the medieval church’s north wall were inserted into the new church but the rest was demolished. The new church had a tower in the west and chancel and sacristy in the east.

After a few years it turned out that the new church grounds was very poor. The building suffered subsidence so strong that stones in the wall were cracked. In the early 20th century the building was also hit by two powerful lightning strikes.

In the 1940s the church was so dilapidated that the parish did not dare to use it. The services were moved to the parish house and planning to build a new church was begun.

A new church was built in the year 1954-55, designed by Arland Noreen. When the church from 1805 had been torn down a study was made of the medieval Church’s foundation residues.

The new church was erected with a full wide chancel in the east and a tower in the west, and in 2007 an extension to the church porch facing north was made.

Memorial grove

The Memorial grove is situated east of the church. The area is surrounded by a thuja hedge. In the south there are flower beds with roses and summer flowers, a Hill Cherry tree and small paths paved with limestone.

Also in the north are flower beds and a wooden cross and a cabinet for candles. Here is the ground sown with grass. The Memorial grove was completed, 1992.



East of the cemetery is a building that houses the janitors and garage. The building has lying yellow panel, white carpentry and a tiled saddle roof. In front of the building’s doors lies an old gravestone in limestone as part of the stairs.

Outside the cemetery’s northeast corner is a row of preserved church stables. The building has standing red painted paneling, black doors, white carpentry and pent roof covered with black plate. In a part of the building is a collection of architectural fragments from the medieval church kept.



Along the churchyard wall in the northeast corner of the cemetery are a number of tombstones that have been removed from the cemetery located. A number of tombstones or parts of tombstones are also placed at both the eastern and western entrance to the cemetery.

At Köpings cemetery are several grave-slabs and standing tombstones of old age that makes them historically valuable, there are also tombstones that are made of special materials, has a special design or otherwise has an interesting history.


Source: Kalmar Läns Museum (Kalmar County Museum)

Translation: Visitoland.com