1: Christian IV’s Winter Room

This room is currently being restored. Read more about the project here.

The Winter Room is the best preserved room from the original Castle, and it was the most important of the King’s three private chambers. The bays are from 1758. In front of the bay to the right stood Christian IV’s mechanical arrangement for raising and lowering the drawbridge. Christian IV lay in state here and the exhibits are mostly from his time.

The rich panelling was made by Court cabinet-maker Gregor Greuss and were completed around 1620. The inlaid paintings were purchased in Antwerp and constitute a unique collection of art from the Netherlands, although most of the artists are unknown. The original stucco ceiling was replaced around 1770 with Pieter Isaacsz’ mythological paintings from the room above, including The Feast of the Gods and The Fall of the Giants.

A speaking tube connects the Winter Room to the Wine Cellar, to the room above and to the gable room at the opposite end of the Castle. Audio channels in the floor allowed the King and his astonished guests to hear music being played from the cellar vault.

Room 2 ->

Objects in this room
100. Goblet in the form of a young knight (Christian IV), tilting at the ring. Made by the goldsmith Heinrich Beust in Brunswick in 1598, commissioned by the King and paid for with the prizes he had won at tilting during the coronation celebrations. The names and arms of the King’s fellow competitors are engraved on the columns. When Christian IV had to sell his royal plate after the defeat of 1628, he kept two pieces, a christening present – and this goblet.
101. Table with inlaid semi-precious stones from Christian IV’s Oratory in the chapel of Frederiksborg Castle. Florence, c. 1620. Stand with Frederik III’s monogram and motto: Dominus providebit (the Lord will provide) from c. 1660.
102. Christian IV. Marble bust, made in Copenhagen in 1644 by François Dieussart.
103. Renaissance chairs, upholstered in silk velvet brocade interwoven with the King’s cipher, C4. Made at the silkfactory in Copenhagen c. 1623.
104. Stools carved by Christian Nerger c. 1690, upholstered as no. 103 (cf no. 213).
105. Table with stone top, in which are cut lines for a game, probably originally intended for use as a calculating board, but also used as a “shove-halfpenny” board. Stand from 18th century.
106. Astronomical clock with musical works and moving figures; made in 1594 by Isaac Habrecht, one of the makers of the famous clock in Strasbourg Cathedral; it is partly a copy of this. Transferred to Copenhagen from the Cabinet of Curiosities at Gottorp Castle in 1764.
107. Marble bust of King Charles I of England (1600 49). Made in 1633, probably by Pierre Besnier.
108. Marble bust of Queen Henriette Marie of England (1609-69), King Charles I’s Queen. Made in 1640 probably by F. Dieussart.
109. Calendar table, dated 1638. On the cover a portrait of Christian IV, probably by Adrian Muiltjes.


Astronomical clock

A magnificent example of an astronomical clock, with a carillon and moveable figures, made by the Swiss watchmaker Isaac Habrecht in 1594. Habrecht was one of the main figures behind the famous cathedral in Strasbourg, where he spent most of his life. The clock which stands at Rosenborg was constructed in part as a replica of it — though on a smaller scale, since the astronomical clock in Strasbourg was among the world’s biggest, before it was rebuilt and became unrecognisable. That the clock is astronomical means that apart from the time it also shows the days of the week, months, years, and lunar phases. The clock has an hour hand to show the time for both the 12 and 24 hour clocks, but no minute hand, as the technology wasn’t advanced enough for this until the introduction of the pendulum. As a reminder of the cycle of life and the inevitability of death, the four ages of man (childhood, youth, adulthood, and old age) are depicted around the clock’s quarter hour hand, just as it is death who rings the bells of the carillon. There is also a weekly calendar, symbolised by the seven gods who have lent their names to the days of the week. The melody played by the carillon is a recreation of a melody from Habrecht’s time, since we do not know how the original sounded. The clock was never in Christian IV’s possession, being made for the Cabinet of Curiosities at Gottorf in 1764 on the orders of Frederik IV. That the relocation was possible was because Frederik IV had captured Gottorf Castle in 1713 during a military operation in the Great Northern War (1700-1721). After capturing it, the king ordered that spoils of war, in this case the art collection, should be moved from Schleswig to Copenhagen. The relocation was made in several rounds, and it wasn’t until many years after Frederik IV’s death that the clock reached its destination. At first the clock was placed in Christiansborg Palace, before being sold in several parts, and it wasn’t until 1846 that Rosenborg was able to purchase and reassemble the clock.