Absalon, the Danish bishop, had a brick church built on the site of Harald's church in 1170.Today's cathedral was completed in 1275 after five of Absalon's successors had contributed to its construction.
The Roskilde bishops owned large areas of land in the region including, from 1186, Havn on the Øresund which later became Copenhagen.By the time of the Danish Reformation in 1536, there were 12 churches and five monasteries in the city.The Risø research facility is also becoming a major employer, extending interest in sustainable energy to the clean technology sphere.The local university, founded in 1972, the historic Cathedral School, and the Danish Meat Trade College, established in 1964, are educational institutions of note.As a result of Absalon's influence, many other churches were built in the vicinity, making Roskilde the most important town in Zealand.
Coins were minted there from the 11th to the 14th century.
Roskilde has a long history, dating from the pre-Christian Viking Age.
Its UNESCO-listed Gothic cathedral, now housing 39 tombs of the Danish monarchs, was completed in 1275, becoming a focus of religious influence until the Reformation.
In the 1970s, the city benefited from the opening of the university and from the completion of the Holbæk Motorway connecting it to Copenhagen.
Roskilde has the oldest operational railway station in Denmark, with connections across Zealand as well as with Falster, Lolland, and Jutland.
With the development of the rail network in the 19th century, Roskilde became an important hub for traffic with Copenhagen, and by the end of the century, there were tobacco factories, iron foundries and machine shops.