Old Church - Oude Kerk, Amsterdam
Literally translated as "old church" and so is the oldest church of amsterdam located right on the red light district. There are thousands of famous personalities buried on this church, indeed, the church itself is constructed in a cemetery - rings a bell - remember the poltergeist movie?
Ironically (or is it?), the church is surrounded by prostitutes on windows. I think our guide was right about the logic in there - prostitute + church = forgiveness of sins right at your doorstep! Who would have thought?
This is one of the oldest Churches in Amsterdam. It is beautiful. There is a lot of History here and the stained glass windows are beautiful too. It is right in the heart of the RLD. A must see if you like historic buildings.
Amazing architecture and it's located in the Red light district which is kind of ironic.. maybe. It is also the oldest building in Amsterdam and serves as a center for cultural activities. With it's tall elegant windows, it's is a must see.
Strange fact about this church 1: It is located in the middle of the red light district.
Strange fact about this church 2: Around it there are built several little houses.
Strange fact about this church 3: You can rent it for parties, exhibitions etc.
Its name means the "Old Church" which is appropriate given that it is not only Amsterdam's oldest church, but also its oldest structure. It was first built as a small wooden chapel in the early 13th century, then it was reconstructed in stone as a proper church dedicated to Saint Nicolas in the early 14th century (though it continues to have a wooden roof!). Thereafter, following successive expansions, alterations, and damage, it was rendered as it is today. The damage mostly came during the struggle between Catholics and Protestants, but Oude Kerk was claimed by the Protestants once and for all in 1578 and has remained Protestant ever since. Nowadays, it finds itself adjacent to Amsterdam's red light district - quite inappropriate for the city's most important church.
I love the carvings in the choir seats---there are interpretations in the sheets you can get when you pay to come inside----the two I have included are
1-2 drunks under one roof---2 people are in agreement about everything, especially about whats wrong
2--Money does not fall out of my ass
old timey truisms even today with a little alterations
It is kind of hard to find at times---right in the middle of the red light district you can get distracted---just keep walking around the church past all the transvestites and coffeeshops and you will find the entrance---make sure it is open, by checking the website----
Oude Kerk means "Old Church". It is Amsterdam’s oldest parish church, consecrated in 1306. The church covers an area of 3,300 square meters. It stands in De Wallen, now Amsterdam's main red-light district.
On the choir-benches of the Old Church, you can find rather surprising wood carvings from around 1480.
Small human figures who all show an everyday situation or a Dutch proverb, dozens of them. Proverbs like : "I don't grow money from my but" (I'm not rich), "He sits in between two chairs" (He cannot make up his mind).
Not only the popular presentations are special, but also that they survived the protestant iconoclast destruction of September 26th, 1566. All statues, paintings and images were destroyed on that day. Like the months before in most churches of the Netherlands of the time (Holland, Belgium and North of France). Only these scenes of daily life were untouched.
The Oude Kerk (Old Church) is now a center of cultural activities. The beautiful light through the high windows, the medieval church furnishing, gravestones and the magnificently painted wooden vaults create a unique atmosphere.
Besides cultural events, exhibitions (eg. the World Press Photo), concerts, receptions and presentations it is open to visitors: Mon-Sat: 11.00-17.00, Sun: 13.00-17.00
Its tower provides an excellent view of the city.
The Old Church ("De Oude Kerk" in Dutch) was another of my favorites from the places we visited. Although there are certainly some gigantic and beautiful churches and cathedrals in the U.S., how can you find one there with this much history? It's original structure dates back to the turn of the 13th and 14th centuries from what I've read, almost 400 years longer than we've even been a country. Amazing.
It was a humbling experience, to say the least, when walking into this facility for the first time. Kinda puts a different perpective on your place in the cosmos. A cavernous main area, and the the "Great Organ" and stained glass windows are incredible. If you go there, look down at the floor and you'll realize you're walking on very large tombstones, with over 10,000 people having been buried there from around 1300 to 1865, including Rembrandt's wife.
I would very much like to re-visit this, since we went there as one of our first places to see, and were a little out of it from the fatigue of the trip over, adjusting to the new surroundings, and it being rather cold that day for walking. It's a very short walk from Dam Square, and located right at the Red Light District. Don't let that put you off for visiting, though, you probably wouldn't know it unless you had already researched the area and were pretty observant when walking about.
It's impossible to describe everything about this place here, best to check out the Website for it. Definitely on our must-visit list.
The sacred meets the profane in Amsterdam ;-) The beautiful old church is located close to the red light district. Check the website for more info on its history.
Sex and religion can't be seperated - can they? Amsterdam is no exception with the old church slap bang in the middle of De Wallen. But its still a beautiful building in its own right.
We got a free concert at Oude Kerk during the weekend of the magnificent organ----the picture included is from the bottom of the organ-----
During the weekend, they had special entrance and my new friend Janka and I toured the inside of the church with the sun shining in through the stained glass windows----