Pallet The stone pallet found in Trondheim

The St. Clement’s Church Excavation

Since early September 2016, archaeologists from The Norwegian Institute for Cultural Heritage Research (NIKU) have worked at an exciting area at Søndre gate in the city center of Trondheim. A preliminary survey in the fall of 2015 parts of a cemetery and masonry were interpreted as the foundations of a church. The church must have been listed sometime in the early 1000’s, but both the church and the cemetery are in use up until the mid 13th century when the area is taken over by normal settlement. Among the tombs there were grave that have not been found at previous excavated medieval cemeteries in Trondheim.

By the end of 2016 it became clear that the archaeologists believe this is St. Clement’s Church, founded by King Olav Haraldsson. The remains of a pallet, or possible high altar, in the church were considered as an archaeological sensation. St. Clement’s church has had a foundation stone of stone with the church itself being a wooden church. The excavation should have been completed in December 2016, but since the findings were so sensational, the Directorate for Cultural Heritage supplied more funds to explore more of the area and some possibly exciting results from under the church.

There has been a great national and international interest around the excavation of the church which will last until October 2017. After the excavation, a visitor center will be built around the church remains.

Follow the excavation on the project’s facebook page.


  • Status
  • Client
    Koteng/ The Directorate for Cultural Heritage
  • Time
Pallet At the church ruins, the graves are very close to the wall. All graves are from the Middle Ages, but likely after the churcha went out of use. This may indicate that church have been important to people.
Archaeology Archaeologists at work
The St. Clement Church ruins The excavation area in early March 2017
Grave Archaeologist woring on one of many graves around the church ruins.
Media There is a great media interest about the church both in Norway and internationally. Here, project manager Anna Petersén is interviewed by the Norwegian Broadcasting Corperation (NRK).
Digital surveying The entire field is documented in detail both with both photo and laser.

Latest news

More archaeology in Trondheim

When archaeologists in the autumn of 2016 found what is probably the remains of the church of St. Clement, it was a small sensation. The finding was made in Søndre gate in Trondheim city center, and in February this year, the archaeological investigations continued.