Gol stavkirke

( Gol Stave Church )

Gol Stave Church (Norwegian: Gol stavkyrkje) is a 12th century stave church originally from Gol in the traditional region of Hallingdal in Buskerud county, Norway. The reconstructed church is now a museum and is now located in the Norwegian Museum of Cultural History at Bygdøy in Oslo, Norway.

 Drawing by J.N. Pram of Gol stave church from 1846, before it was moved to Bygdø in Oslo.

The church has many similarities in the construction of the inner erection with Hegge Stave Church in Valdres, and it has been assumed that the same builder was responsible for both. It probably stood in its original form until the 17th century, with a passageway around church and choirs. The choir's walls and apse have remains of murals which is reasonable to assume originate from 1652 (the year is painted on the wall) from the same painter who made decorations in Torpo Stave Church in 1648 (epitaph), Flesberg Stave Church (later overpainted), Rollag Stave Church 1653, Veggli Stave Church and Nore Stave Church 1655 and Uvdal Stave Church 1656. The apse's depiction of the Last Supper originates from the same painter, but the reconstruction of the apse's walls is uncertain. The roof rider was renewed in 1694. At the same time, a ceiling was installed, and during the same period, two windows were installed on the south wall in the central room. Around 1730, a gallery was built on the north side. Some time later, the choir and apse were demolished, and a new half-timbered choir was erected. But the old materials were reused for the ceiling in the new choir, and thus the murals survived and could be restored in connection with the move.

In 1802–1803 the church was enlarged so that it "formerly too small a church for such a numerous commons (had become) strangely larger, so that it once holds as many listeners as before". The corridors around the church were demolished, and new outer walls of table-covered trusses were erected approximately where the corridor walls had stood. A porch with a salt roof was erected in front of the west portal. The church then got the look it had when J. N. Prahm designed it in 1846.

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