The Round Tower of Copenhagen

The Round Tower (Rundetaarn) in Central Copenhagen was built by the Danish king Christian IV in the middle of the 1600s. The tower is the oldest preserved astronomic observatory in Europe. It still functions as such, although no longer for scientists, but for amateur astronomers and the public. But there is quite a lot more to it than meets the eye. The most obvious is the riddle at the tower consisting of Latin and Hebrew words and various symbols, which was most likely written by King Christian IV himself. His own rough draft to this cryptic inscription is kept in Denmark's Record Office. So far no one know the meaning of the riddle. Also there is a ghost that was trapped inside the tower.

The Round Tower is a cylindrical tower built in masonry of alternating yellow and red bricks, the colours of the Oldenburgs. The bricks used were manufactured in the Netherlands and are of a hard-burned, slender type known as muffer or mopper. On the rear side, it is attached to the Trinitatis Church, but it has never served as a church tower.

The Kings original idea from the start was to build an observatory identically like Tycho Brahe’s Stjerneborg on the top of the Round Tower with the exact diameter like Stjerneborg’s 15 m. The Tower was completed as an observatory with a little planetarium in 1642 and has a height of almost 40 m including the observatory. The Round Tower is built with a 210 metre long spiral ramp which leads to the top, with 52 windows total; 7 windows on each side; and 24 beams sticking out just below the platform, and on the uppermost facade of the tower there is a gilded inscription like a rebus (riddle). There are several interpretations of the riddle. Thomas Bang interprets it in 1648 as follows: "Guide the learning and justice, God, in the crowned King Christian the Fourth's heart". A lot of cabbalistic symbols can be found as well.

The Rebus Inscription
At the end of the spiral ramp there is a planet plotter, which shows the six inner planets' orbit round the Sun. The present planet plotter was put up in 1822 and is equipped with a clockwork. In the background the northern starry sky is pictured according to Bayer's celestial atlas from the beginning of the 17th century. The planet plotter was first constructed and set up by Ole Romer in 1697, who was convinced of the planets' correct orbit around The Sun, but who, out of veneration for Tycho Brahe, adapted the first planet plotter according to his picture of the world - with The Earth in the center, The Sun moving around The Earth, and the rest of the planets around The Sun. Until 1861 it was used by the University of Copenhagen, but today, anyone can observe the night sky through the fine astronomical telescope of the tower in the winter period. Legendary astronomers having used the observatory include Ole Rømer (1644-1710) and Peder Horrebow (1679-1764).

In 1880 a boy fell down the hollow core of the tower, and was trapped at the bottom for 20 hours and found dead before a mason cut a hole in the central wall and got him out. Sometimes visitors of the Round Tower can still hear the boy crying.

Sources :
Paranormal : ”Exploring the world of the unexplained” Issue 56;;

Pic Source :

Written By Tripzibit on Jun 24, 2011 | 04:40

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