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Pew 'poop' stains declared cultural artefact

Pew 'poop' stains declared cultural artefact

Published: 29 Jun 2010 15:01 GMT+02:00
Updated: 29 Jun 2010 15:01 GMT+02:00

Custodians of Eriksbergs Gamla Kyrka in Western Sweden have been surprised to learn that the stains on the church pews are not from bat faeces but in fact form part of the fabric of ecclesiastical cultural heritage, according to a report in the local Borås Tidning daily.

As part of a larger renovation of the 12th century parish church the pews were being prepared for a new coat of paint to cover flecks that that had long been presumed to have come from aerial ablutions of the bats lurking in the church eaves.

But on closer inspection the spots were in fact found to be traces of paint used to brush up the pews in the 1930s and as such form part of the building's cultural heritage, along with the 12th century murals adorning the walls.

The flecks of pre-war paint have stubbornly clung to the pews in the old church for the past 80 years despite several previous attempts to scrub them off.

Parishioners had become uncomfortable sitting in the brown-speckled pews and had forwarded a request to the church authorities that the benches be cleaned during the renovation.

However, the county administrative board refused after the offending spots were examined more closely by a curator. According to the expert, the bats are not to blame and has declared that the pews are to be left alone.

"That the bats would have managed to dot every pew would have been pretty incredible," said church clerk Lilli-Ann Grindsiö to the newspaper.

However, Grindsiö is not herself entirely convinced that the flecks are mere paint, calling the find "a mystery that we will probably never know the answer to."

The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

18:56 June 29, 2010 by Valdemaratterdag
I have a much better reason to not attend the church, and it has nothing to do with "poop" on the pews: I don't wish to have my brain rotted by superstitious nonsense.
21:22 June 29, 2010 by BillyB
Sorry, did i miss something exciting here or is this really a story about some old paint on some old chairs?

I have an door in my basement storage area that was from when the building was built in 1968.

there is some paint on that, and even what appears to be some foam stuck to the bottom.

let me know when the reporters and photographers will be round to report on that breaking news
22:24 June 29, 2010 by Swedesmith
I have a few stains in my underbyxor....could it be paint?
22:52 June 29, 2010 by voiceofreason
@Valdemaratterdag

I guess you are the wisest guy in the world. Limited to the things your tiny brains can understand using your limited senses, you dare to call anything that you have no understanding about superstitious.

I guess you are no different from those religious folks, you are both boxed into the same straight-jacket mentality i.e. science or religion.

What I pity most about you is the hatred that's eating you up, and I fear it may consume you or someone else.
08:31 June 30, 2010 by Rick Methven
@Swedesmith

" have a few stains in my underbyxor....could it be paint? "

If they are more than 100years old and the stains have been there all the time, then it could be paint. However, I think you should try washing them to make sure....
10:28 June 30, 2010 by DamnImmigrant
Something stinks to high heaven here.

Where is CSI when you need it.
13:40 June 30, 2010 by organismasawhole
Anyone into chemistry and particle physics can appreciate this story.
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