These are the people who have dedicated their craftsmanship, professionalism, passion, attention – and a large part of their lives – to the maintenance of one of the most important Renaissance castles in the world.
The following pages hold their stories. Moments from their lives, their wild and varied paths to Kronborg, and their takes on what makes the castle so unique that CNN Travel named it one of the most beautiful castles in Denmark in January 2020.
It also contains 14 other more historical tales from Danish history. They are fictionalized stories based in truth illustrating the beginning, the downfall and the heyday periods of the castle’s life. They are tales of legendary vikings, imprisoned queens, duelling actors and toiling slaves, together creating a tapestry of destiny, intertwining the castle’s people of the past with those of today.
This book aims to provide a sensory experience. As an inspirational and thought-provoking insight into the home of Shakespeare’s mad king Hamlet, it wants to give you a glimpse of the people who have danced, cried and lived out their dreams within the castle walls – and a peek into the small, welcoming and committed ‘family’ we can thank for the ability to follow in these historical footsteps. Kronborg Stories Untold: Tales and Destinies from the Depths of Danish History offers a heartfelt journey of the castle whether you have already seen it, have never have heard of it, or maybe plan on visiting someday.
A historical take on the day-to-day
The people you will meet through the pages of this book have been shaped by the ups and downs of life. There is the mason who battled and beat leukaemia in his youth and now speaks to the ‘ghosts’ of those he lost while hospitalised; then there’s a modern painter who always felt most comfortable in trousers while living a life at odds with the world, similar to the young Queen Caroline Mathilde, who opted for trousers and men’s clothing—unheard of at the time—sparking much ado until she one day found herself locked up at Kronborg Castle while her lover was executed and her children taken away.
The 14 life stories from 2020 and the 14 tales that follow from the craftsmen, prisoners, maids, and soldiers of the castle’s history – aspire to link the lives of today with the lives of the past. We tell the stories of modern people while shining a light on our shared history. We lift the veil on the people with intimate knowledge of today’s castle while showing snippets of events from throughout the location’s history, many of which still impact us today.
We honour the tradition of secrets, seen in messages hidden under tiles or obscured in artwork on the castle walls by masons, painters, carpenters, and other craftspeople, leaving their marks for generations to come. These are heretofore the untold stories.