Braathen Dendrokronologiska Undersökningar

Lunnevägen 2,   SE-46144 Trollhättan,   Sweden
Tel.: +46 520 19546   Mobile: +46 704 540 331

Alva, Gotland

In 1954 remains of a squared building were discovered in the ground close to the church. The nearest point, a corner stone, is situated about one meter south-east of the south door-way of the belfry. Stones in the ground indicate a quadratic base, 8x8 m, parallel to the present nave. According to a report by E. Noreen, archaeologist, the quality of the mortar tells that it is medieval. In publications the building traces have been interpreted as the base from a 'kastal'

The close position of the ruin to the present church makes it probable that the building was torn down at the latest when the present belfry was erected. In my view it will always be guesswork for what purpose the stone building was erected and how it was shaped. It is far from probable that the building served as some kind of fortified defence.

Because the base of a baptist font is older than the present nave it is probable that there existed an earlier church in the same yard. The stone remains might have been part of a tower belfry added in the west end to a wooden nave. No traces of a stone base east of the quadratic stone array have been found.

There are re-used dressed stones in the walls of the present belfry, and in the stair-case is a stone, shaped like it had been part of a portal.