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Gammeltorv, Copenhagen

4.0
Gammeltorv is the oldest square in Copenhagen, Denmark. With adjoining Nytorv it forms a common space along the Strøget pedestrian zone. While the square dates back to the foundation of the city in the 12th century, most of its buildings were constructed after the Great Fire of 1795 in Neoclassical style. Another dominating feature is the Caritas Well, a Renaissance fountain erected by King Christian IV in 1610.Historically, Gammeltorv has been the focal point of Copenhagen's judicial and political life as well as one of its two principal marketplaces. Several former city halls have been located on the square or in its immediate vicinity. Surprisingly, its name is not a reference to adjoining Nytorv but to the slightly younger Amagertorv, Copenhagen's other major market in early times.HistoryOriginsAlready prior to Absolon's construction of his castle on Slotsholmen, there seems to have been a marketplace at Gammeltorv, possibly also a Thing. Copenhagen's first town hall, of which practically nothing is known, was built on the east side of the square but later destroyed during Hanseatic capture and pillaging of the city in 1368. In 1374 the square is referred to as Forum and in 1446 the square is referred to as "the old square" as opposed to the somewhat younger Amagertorv. From 1470 the name Gammeltorv is used consistently.
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  • During our second stay in Copenhagen we had been enjoying a bit of retail therapy along Strøget and were in dire need of a place to take a rest and enjoy a snack. Gammeltorv, a large city square turne...  more »
  • The pedestrian street Strøget is passing this square and the adjoining Nytorv. The square is lined with some very prominent buildings from the 1800s. In the middle of the square, you find the beautifu...  more »
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