Vor Frelsers Kirke, the Church of
Our Saviour, on the island district of Christianshavn in Copenhagen was
built 1682-94. However, its well-loved, highly distinctive spire came
later, in 1749-52. It was designed by Laurids
de Thurah and was inspired
by Borromini's stone lantern of Sant'Ivo
alla Sapienza in Rome. The final
design ended up quite differently, though. It is taller, slimmer and
constructed of wood covered with copper. It starts with the octagonal
lantern topped by a gallery, then follows the spiral. The external stair
has a gilded railing and twists round four times through 150 steps. The
top of the spire consists of a golden globe and the figure
which is 3 meters in height.
The square tower dates from the
original church construction completed in 1694. It was then crowned with a
The church was designed by King Christian
V's chief architect Lambert van Haven in Dutch Baroque style. The plan is
a Greek cross, i.e. with all arms of the same length, but with additional
blocks in the four inside corners of the cross and a rounded square apse.
Tall, slim, round-arched windows on all sides between Tuscan pilasters.
The church is constructed of red brick but with the capitals of the
pilasters and the horizontal band above of sandstone. The portal also of
sandstone (see below). A hipped roof of black-glazed tiles covers the
cross, whilst the the roofs of the corner blocks and apse are copper-clad.