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Turku Cathedral is the mother church of the Lutheran Church of Finland, and the country’s national shrine. It is also regarded as one of the major records of Finnish architectural history. Turku Cathedral is now over seven hundred years old.

A small parish church was built on the hill of Unikankare in Turku, and consecrated as the church of St. Mary around the middle of the 13th century. The church, originally made of wood, and later rebuilt with stone, was consecrated as the Cathedral in 1300. At the same time, the Cathedral was dedicated to the patronage of St. Henry, the first bishop in Finland.

Workshop: Photo from the cathedral. Because of the bad lights only here.
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The Organ of Cathedral

The main organ in the Cathedral contains 81 stops and 6057 pipes. It is the biggest mechanical organ in Finland, and it is said to be the most expensive instrument in Finland as well. The main organ has only been played for about 20 years, since 1980, and the choir organ and the organ in the Sharpshooters' Chapel are no older. The former dates back to 1973, the latter to 1980. They were all built by the Finnish organ-builders Veikko Virtanen, Ltd. The small portable organ dates from 1959. In the only true Cathedral acoustics in Finland, the organ also sounds behind the altarpiece, where a remote organ, operated by the main organ, is located.

Turku Cathedral

Turku Cathedral, located on Unikankare Hill, is a national shrine. The church is dedicated to the Virgin Mary and Finland's first bishop, St. Henrik and was inaugurated in 1300.
The monuments and hundreds of details tell about the history of the Finnish people. Queen Kaarina Maununtytär and many bishops and military commanders have been laid to rest under the church arches.
The Cathedral Museum in the southern gallery takes the visitor back in times to the 14th century. Statuettes of saints and church silver dating back to the Catholic period in the Middle Ages are also on display.
Turku Cathedral is the mother church of the Lutheran Church of Finland, and the country’s national shrine. It is familiar, even dear to every Finn. Its bells chime at noon over the radio (Channel Yle Radio 1) throughout Finland, and they also proclaim the Christmas peace to the country. (Source:turku.fi & Turku Cathedral)

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Additional Photos by George Rumpler (Budapestman) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 8900 W: 3 N: 20435] (82620)
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