Assistens Kirkegård (Copenhagen, Denmark)

Assistens Kirkegård (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Assistens Kirkegård is the final resting place of many famous people, such as Søren Kierkegaard, Hans Christian Andersen, Hinné, Kuhlau, Martin Andersen Nexø, H.C. Ørsted, etc.

About the cemetery

In 1711 a virulent epidemic caused the death of one third of the inhabitants of Copenhagen.s the city's cemeteries could not possibly cope with the resulting demand for burial plots, five new cemeteries were laid out, as a temporary solution. These were the so-called assistancekirkegårde, i.e. the "relief cemeteries". But they were very small and their capacities were soon depleted. This emergency led to proposals to establish a lager cemetery outside the city boundaries.

In 1757 the municipal authorities allocated an area of 39,000 square alen (an alen is 0.6277m) as the site of a new cemetery outside the city limits. This is the area which is today referred to as Section A of Assistens Kirkegård, which was consecrated on 6 November 1760. For its first 25 years, Assistens served as a paupers´ cemetery. It proved difficult to persuade the citizens of Copenhagen to use a cemetery that was - by contemporary standards - so far away from the city. With a view to making Assistens a more attractive choice, the authorities introduced a steep increase in charges for burial within the city limits. For the poor there was no choice; they were buried in Assistens.

In 1785, however, Assistens Kirkegård acquired a more elevated status. Assistens Kirkegård is the final resting place of many famous men and women, among them: Søren Kierkegaard, philosopher; Hans Christian Andersen, writer; Hinné, circus owner; Kuhlau, composer; Martin Andersen Nexø, writer; H.C. Ørsted, physicist. 


Cemeteries Department,
The Technical and Environmental Administration,
City of Copenhagen

Kapelvej 2
2200 N Copenhagen


Phone: 0045 82 33 46 40