May 27, 2021 · Prince Knud Christian Frederik Michael was born on July 27, 1900, at Sorgenfri Palace in Lyngby-Taarbæk, Denmark and was the younger of the two sons of King Christian X of Denmark and his wife Alexandrine of Mecklenburg-Schwerin.
- Birth and Early Life
- World War II
- Illness and Death
- Titles, Styles and Honours
- External Links
Olav was born Prince Alexander Edward Christian Frederik in Appleton House on the royal Sandringham Estate, Flitcham, United Kingdom. His parents were Prince Carl, second son of Crown Prince Frederick of Denmark (later King Frederick VIII), and Princess Maud, youngest daughter of King Edward VII of the United Kingdom, who was the eldest son of Britain's Queen Victoria. In 1905, Carl was elected king of Norway and took the name Haakon VII. On the day Haakon was crowned, he gave his two-year-old son the Norwegian name Olav after Olaf Haakonsson, king of Norway and Denmark. Olav was thus the first heir to the throne since the Middle Ages to have been raised in Norway. Unlike his father, who was a naval officer, Olav chose to complete his main military education in the army. He graduated from the three-year Norwegian Military Academy in 1924, with the fourth best score in his class. Olav then went on to study jurisprudence and economics...
As Crown Prince, Olav had received extensive military training and had participated in most major Norwegian military exercises. Because of this he was perhaps one of the most knowledgeable Norwegian military leaders and was respected by other Allied leaders for his knowledge and leadership skills. During a visit to the United States before the war, he and his wife had established a close relationship with President Roosevelt. These factors would prove to be important for the Norwegian fight against the attacking German forces. In 1939, Crown Prince Olav was appointed an admiral of the Royal Norwegian Navy and a general of the Norwegian Army. During World War II, Olav stood by his father's side in resisting the German occupation of Norway. During the campaign he was a valuable advisor both to civilian and military leaders. When the Norwegian government decided to go into exile, he offered...
Succeeding to the Norwegian throne in 1957 upon his father's death, Olav reigned as a "People's King," and became extremely popular. He liked to drive his own cars, and would drive in the public lanes, even though as a monarch he was allowed to drive in bus lanes. When driving was restricted during the 1973 energy crisis, King Olav - who could have driven legally - wanted to lead by example; while preparing for a skiing trip, he dressed up in his skiing outfit and boarded the Holmenkollbanen suburban railway carrying his skis on his shoulder.When later asked how he dared to go out in public without bodyguards, he replied that "he had 4 million bodyguards"—the population of Norway was at the time 4 million. For his athletic ability and role as King, Olav earned the Holmenkollen medal in 1968, the Medal for Outstanding Civic Achievement in 1970 and was made Name of the Year in 1975. He had a strong interest in military matters and t...
During the summer of 1990, the King suffered from health problems, but recovered somewhat during Christmas the same year. At the age of 87, on 17 January 1991, while residing in the Royal Lodge Kongsseteren in Oslo, he became ill and died in the evening of a myocardial infarction. An interview given by King Harald V and hints in a biography by Jo Benkow, who was the President of the Storting at that time, mention the possibility that King Olav suffered great trauma upon learning of the outbreak of the first Gulf War, which began the day of his death. Olav's son Harald V succeeded him as King. On the night of his death and for several days up until the state funeral, Norwegians mourned publicly, lighting hundreds of thousands of candles in the courtyard outside the Royal Palace in Oslo, with letters and cards placed amongst them.The National Archives have preserved all these cards.
King Olav's leadership during the Second World War made him a symbol of Norwegian independence and national unity. As King Olav's wife, Princess Märtha, died of cancer, the King Olav V's Prize for Cancer Researchwas established in 1992. A 2005 poll by the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation named King Olav "Norwegian of the Century".
Titles and styles
1. 2 July 1903 – 18 November 1905: His HighnessPrince Alexander of Denmark 2. 18 November 1905 – 21 September 1957: His Royal HighnessThe Crown Prince of Norway 3. 21 September 1957 – 17 January 1991: His MajestyThe King of Norway
National honours and medals
1. Norway: 1.1. Recipient of the War Cross 1.2. Recipient of the Medal for Outstanding Civic Achievementin gold 1.3. Grand Cross with Collar of the Royal Norwegian Order of St Olav(later Grand Master) 1.4. Grand Cross of the Royal Norwegian Order of Merit(Grand Master) 1.5. Recipient of the St Olav's medal 1.6. Recipient of the Haakon VII Coronation Medal 1.7. Recipient of the War Medal 1.8. Recipient of the Haakon VII 70th Anniversary Medal 1.9. Recipient of the King Haakon VII 1905–1955 Jub...
1. Argentina: Grand Cross with Collar of the Order of the Liberator General San Martin 2. Austria: Grand Star of the Decoration of Honour for Services to the Republic of Austria 3. Belgium: Grand Cordon of the Order of Leopold 4. Brazil: Grand Cross with Collar of the Order of the Rose 5. Chile: Grand Cross with Collar of the Order of the Merit of Chile 6. Denmark: 6.1. Knight of the Elephant(13 August 1921) 6.2. Cross of Honour of the Order of the Dannebrog(13 August 1921) 6.3. Grand Command...Crown Prince Olav arrives in Norway in 1905 on his father's arm and is greeted by Prime Minister Christian MichelsenDrawing, 1906, by Andreas BlochCrown Prince Olav and his father King Haakon VII take shelter under birch trees as the German Luftwaffe bombs MoldeBenkow, Jo (1991). Olav – menneske og monark (in Norwegian) (3rd ed.). Oslo: Gyldendal Norsk Forlag. ISBN 82-05-20192-7.Bratli, Kjell Arne; Schau, Øyvind (1995). Sjøoffiser og samfunnsbygger : Vernepliktige sjøoffiserers forening : 100-års jubileumsbok : 1895–1995 (in Norwegian). Hundvåg: Sjømilitære Samfund ved Nor...Dahl, Hans Fredrik (1982). Norge under Olav V (in Norwegian). Oslo: Cappelen. ISBN 8202090520.Flint, Peter B. (18 January 1991). "Olav V, Norway's King 33 Years And Resistance Hero, Dies at 87". New York Times.
May 25, 2021 · A series of Danish defeats culminating in the Battle of Bornhöved on 22 July 1227 cemented the loss of Denmark's north German territories. Valdemar himself was saved only by the courageous actions of a German knight who carried Valdemar to safety on his horse. From that time on, Valdemar focused his efforts on domestic affairs.
- Early Life
- External Links
Christian was born on 26 September 1870 at his parents' country residence, the Charlottenlund Palace north of Copenhagen, during the reign of his paternal grandfather, King Christian IX. He was the first child of Crown Prince Frederick of Denmark and his wife Louise of Sweden. His father was the eldest son of King Christian IX of Denmark and Louise of Hesse-Kassel, and his mother was the only daughter of King Charles XV of Sweden and Norway and Louise of the Netherlands. He was baptised with the names Christian Carl Frederik Albert Alexander Vilhelm in the chapel of Christiansborg Palace on 31 October 1870 by the Bishop of Zealand, Hans Lassen Martensen. Prince Christian was raised with his siblings in the royal household in Copenhagen, and grew up between his parents' residence in Copenhagen, the Frederick VIII's Palace, an 18th-century palace which forms part of the Amalienborg Palace complex in central Copenhagen, and th...
On 14 May 1912, King Frederick VIII died after collapsing from shortness of breath while taking a walk in a park in Hamburg, Germany. He had been returning from a recuperation stay in Nice, France, and was staying anonymously in the city before continuing to Copenhagen. Christian was in Copenhagenwhen he heard about his father's demise and acceded to the throne as Christian X.
Easter Crisis of 1920
In April 1920, Christian instigated the Easter Crisis, perhaps the most decisive event in the evolution of the Danish monarchy in the twentieth century. The immediate cause was a conflict between the King and the cabinet over the reunification with Denmark of Schleswig, a former Danish fiefdom, which had been lost to Prussia during the Second War of Schleswig. Danish claims to the region persisted to the end of World War I, at which time the defeat of the...
World War II
On 9 April 1940 at 4 pm the Nazi Germany invaded Denmark in a surprise attack, overwhelming Denmark's Army and Navy and destroying the Danish Army Air Corps. Christian X quickly realized that Denmark was in an impossible position. Its territory and population were far too small to hold out against Germany for any sustained period of time. Its flat land would have resulted in it being easily overrun by German panzers; Jutland, for instance, would have been o...
On 22 November 1942, The Washington Post published a photograph of Christian X; calling him, facetiously, a victim of Hitler, and stating that the nation of this monarch did not oppose German occupation with arms. It became then important for Danish Americans to prove the contrary, and a number of stories were invented in the turmoil of the war. The most successful of these was the legend of the King wearing the yellow starin order to support the Jews. King Christian used to ride daily through the streets of Copenhagen unaccompanied while the people stood and waved to him. One apocryphal story relates that one day, a German soldier remarked to a young boy that he found it odd that the King would ride with no bodyguard. The boy reportedly replied, "All of Denmark is his bodyguard." This story was recounted in Nathaniel Benchley's bestselling book Bright Candles as well as in Lois Lowry's book Number the Stars. The contempor...
King Christian X Land in Greenlandis named after him. Danish and Icelandic honours 1. Knight of the Elephant, 26 September 1888 2. Cross of Honour of the Order of the Dannebrog, 26 September 1888 3. Commemorative Medal for the Golden Wedding of King Christian IX and Queen Louise 4. Grand Commander of the Dannebrog, in Diamonds, 14 May 1912 5. Founder and Grand Master of the Order of the Falcon, 3 July 1921 – 17 June 1944 Foreign honoursThe Royal Lineage at the website of the Danish MonarchyChristian X at the website of the Royal Danish Collection at Amalienborg PalaceNewspaper clippings about Christian X of Denmark in the 20th Century Press Archives of the ZBW