The Reverend’s Pavilion

This beautiful little red garden pavilion was built in 1734 and spent its first 200 years in the rectory garden at Katarina Church, one of the largest churches in Stockholm. It’s called the Reverend’s pavilion (Kyrkoherdens lusthus) because it was commissioned by Reverend John Nokolaus Pouget, the pastor of Katarina 1731 - 1735.

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Pouget was well-liked and considered a worldly man – a scholar and a Jesuit – educated in Germany and Italy. But his enjoyment of the pavilion was brief with his death in 1735.

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Thanks to Ingvar Storm, author of “Lusthus I Stockholm,” we have a record of memories shared by this little pavilion from a talk given on Swedish Radio in 1963, by Johan Landquist, professor of psychology and son of Katarina’s Reverand at the turn of the century.

He recalled childhood days when the pavilion was full of life, sometimes used as a playhouse, sometimes tidied up for a special dinner or breakfast “on a blue Pentacostal Sunday or a wonderful summer day.”

“These Sunday moments were clear and calm and almost holy. We were freshly bathed and in our Sunday best. The cherry trees and pear trees were blooming.”

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This little pavilion, central to generations of similar memories, can now be found in Skansen, Stockholm’s famous open-air museum, where it was moved in the 1930s, and where it will certainly stand, cared for, for years and years to come.

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It is one of several pavilions on display at Skansen, and I thoroughly encourage you to stop by and pay it a visit if you get a chance.

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