History – Royal mausoleum
Since the 1400s Roskilde Cathedral has been the preferred church of the Danish royal family. As a result the church’s four large chapels, choir and burial place from 1985 contain the graves of 21 kings and 18 queens.
For almost 800 years the Cathedral has played a significant role in the history of Denmark, initially as the main church for Denmark’s most powerful bishopric and since as the royal burial church. In about 1170 Bishop Absalon began building a cathedral on the site out of bricks, the most modern building material of the time. The advent of Gothic architecture led to its adoption and a move away from the Cathedral’s original Romanesque style.
The Cathedral is a living building which has been added onto since 1170.