Copenhagen’s Old Stock Exchange

Wednesday, 17 April 2024 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General
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Børssalen © flickr.com - Jens Rost/cc-by-sa-2.0

Børssalen © flickr.com – Jens Rost/cc-by-sa-2.0

Børsen (Danish for “the Exchange”), also known as Børsbygningen (“The (Stock) Exchange building”), is a 17th-century stock exchange in the center of Copenhagen. The historic building is situated next to Christiansborg Palace, the seat of the Danish Parliament, on the island of Slotsholmen.

Built under the reign of Christian IV in 1619–1640, the building is considered a leading example of the Dutch Renaissance style in Denmark. It is a protected building for conservation purposes.

Børsen, a popular tourist attraction, was most noted for its distinctive spire, shaped as the tails of four dragons twined together, reaching a height of 56 m (184 ft). On 16 April 2024, the building was severely damaged by fire, which toppled the spire.

Børsen was planned by Christian IV as part of his plan to strengthen Copenhagen’s role as a centre for trade and commerce in Northern Europe. A site on the north side of the embankment which connected Copenhagen to the new market town Christianshavn, which was planned on reclaimed land off the coast of Amager. The king charged Lorenz van Steenwinckel with the design of the new building, but Steenwinckel died shortly thereafter. The assignment was then passed on to his brother, Hans van Steenwinckel.

© Maryna Marionneau/cc-by-sa-4.0 © FrDr/cc-by-sa-4.0 © Jules Verne Times Two - www.julesvernex2.com/cc-by-sa-4.0 Børsen by Ferdinand Richardt, 1850 - bruun-rasmussen.dk Børssalen © flickr.com - Jens Rost/cc-by-sa-2.0 © Daniel Stello/cc-by-sa-3.0 © flickr.com - Dan Lundberg/cc-by-sa-2.0 © flickr.com - Fred Romero/cc-by-2.0 © FrDr/cc-by-sa-4.0 © Leif Jørgensen/cc-by-sa-4.0 © Mahlum © John Samuel/cc-y-sa-4.0
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© Jules Verne Times Two - www.julesvernex2.com/cc-by-sa-4.0
The site first had to be prepared since the embankment had not yet stabilized. Construction of the building began in 1620 and was largely completed in 1624 with the exception of the spire (installed in 1625) and details of the east gable (completed in 1640). The dragons that made up the spire, designed by the fireworks master of Christian IV, were supposed to protect the building from enemies and fire. The building contained 40 trading offices at the ground floor and one large room at the upper floor. The building was in use as a marketplace during the late 1620s. In 1647, Christian IV sold the building to the merchant Jacob Madsen for 50,000 Danish rigsdaler. Frederick III later reacquired the building from Madsen’s widow, who could no longer afford to maintain the building. The building was restored by Nicolai Eigtved in 1745.

The interior of the building was renovated in 1855, and the interior was renovated by architect Harald Conrad Stilling. In 1857, Frederick VII sold the building to Grosserer-Societetet for 70,000 rigsdaler. The building housed the Danish stock-market until 1974. In 1918, unemployed anarchists attacked Børsen, an attack that went into the Danish history books as stormen på Børsen (Storm on the Stock Exchange).

As of 2018, the building serves as headquarters of the Danish Chamber of Commerce (Dansk Erhverv).

On the morning of 16 April 2024, fire spread throughout the building, resulting in the collapse of its iconic Dragespir (“Dragon Spire“) at around 08:32. The fire happened during renovation work in the main building’s copper roof but the cause of the blaze was unknown. About half of the building was destroyed. The scaffolding around Børsen also caught fire. Historic paintings from the building’s substantial art collection were rescued from the burning building by staff, emergency workers, and passers-by. Among them was From Copenhagen Stock Exchange by Skagen Painter Peder Severin Krøyer. The nearby National Museum, immediately sent 25 employees to help retrieve the art. Everyone in the building was able to leave, and there were no casualties. The scaffolding around the building made it harder for fire fighters to reach the flames, and the copper roof preserved the heat.

Read more on DW, 16 April 2024: , Le Monde, 16 April 2024: Fire rages through Copenhagen’s historic stock exchange, toppling spire, Reuters, 16 April 2024: Copenhagen fire: Spire collapses as historic stock exchange engulfed by flames, The Times, 16 April 2024: Copenhagen exchange fire: Børsen building blaze a ‘national disaster’, BBC, 16 April 2024: Copenhagen’s historic stock exchange in flames, CNN, 16 April 2024: Spire collapses after fire rips through Copenhagen’s old stock exchange, NPR, 16 April 2024: Fire ravages 17th-century Old Stock Exchange in Copenhagen, toppling the iconic spire, The Guardian, 16 April 2024: Spire collapses after fire breaks out at Copenhagen’s old stock exchange, The New York Times, 16 April 2024: Copenhagen’s Old Stock Exchange Building Partly Collapses in Fire, The Washington Post, 16 April 2024: Fire consumes Copenhagen’s 400-year-old stock market building, Financial Times, 16 April 2024: Denmark’s historic stock exchange goes up in flames, France24, 16 April 2024: Copenhagen landmark fire ‘under control’, say rescue services, El Pais, 16 April 2024: Fire rages through the 17th-century Old Stock Exchange in Copenhagen, toppling the iconic spire, CNN, 17 April 2024: Copenhagen stunned by devastating stock exchange fire, as police launch probe into blaze, BBC, 18 April 2024: Moment Copenhagen stock exchange facade collapses, DW, 18 April 2024: Copenhagen Stock Exchange facade collapses after fire and Wikipedia Børsen (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.






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