Uppsala

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Uppsala (Swedish pronunciation: [ˈɵpsɑːla]; older spelling Upsala) is the capital of Uppsala County and the fourth largest city of Sweden with 144,839 inhabitants.[2]

Located about 70 km north of the capital Stockholm, it is also the seat of the Uppsala Municipality. Since 1164, Uppsala has been the ecclesiastical center of Sweden, being the seat of the Archbishop of the Church of Sweden. Founded in 1477, Uppsala University is the oldest center of higher education in Scandinavia.

Contents

History

Uppsala was originally located a few kilometers to the north, at a location now known as Gamla Uppsala (Old Uppsala). Today's Uppsala was then called Östra Aros. (Old) Uppsala was, according to medieval writer Adam of Bremen, the main pagan centre of Sweden, and the Temple at Uppsala contained magnificent idols of the Æsir gods.[3]

As a replacement for the Scandinavian gods, Uppsala was made into a strong Christian centre. A bishop was soon consecrated, and in 1164 Uppsala was made into an archdiocese, with Stefan, a monk from Alvastra Abbey, being consecrated the first Archbishop of Uppsala and primate of Sweden.

The present-day Uppsala was at that time known as Östra Aros and was a port town of Gamla Uppsala. In 1274, Östra Aros overtook Gamla Uppsala as the main regional center, and when the cathedral of Gamla Uppsala burnt down, the archbishopric was moved to Östra Aros, where the impressive Uppsala Cathedral was erected; it was inaugurated in 1435. The cathedral is built in the Gothic style and is one of the largest in northern Europe, with towers reaching 118.70 metres.

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