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Nordic FAQ - 6 of 7 - NORWAY
Section - 6.3 History

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Top Document: Nordic FAQ - 6 of 7 - NORWAY
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   Norway's history is divided in two parts: Before 1387, and after 1814.
   :->
   
    A chronology of important dates:
    
   800's
          The bloody conflicts between tribal kingdoms, as well as a
          craving for adventure, prompted Norwegians to leave their lands
          in what are known as Viking voyages. Warriors from the fjords
          (Vik in Norse) raided throughout western Europe and into the
          Mediterranean.
   890's
          Harald Hårfagre ("fair-hair") unites Norway to a single
          kingdom. Ireland falls under Norwegian rule. Iceland is
          colonized.
   995
          King Olav Tryggvason converts to Christianity.
   1000
          (circa) Norway is split in three parts by Olof Skötkonung, King
          of Svealand, his step-father Svend Forkbeard, King of Denmark,
          and the exiled Jarl Eirik. King Olav Tryggvason is defeated.
          Jarl Eirik gets a third of Norway as his own, and the part of
          Olof Skötkonung's as his vassal.
          The viking chieftain King Olav Haraldsson defeats and slays the
          son of Jarl Eirik, but unites with Eirik against King Olof of
          Svealand. Unpease pesters the life in Jämtland and Bohuslän.
   1022
          King Canute the Great (of Denmark) conquered also Norway. King
          Olav escaped to his relative King Jaroslav in Novgorod, where
          he raised an army. The new King of Sweden, Amund Jakob,
          supports king Olav Haraldsson.
   1029
          Bishopric in Trondheim
   1030
          The battle of Stiklestad in Trøndelag, in which Olav Haraldsson
          (canonized as St. Olav) is killed. The pilgrimages to his grave
          in Nidaros (Trondheim) begin. When King Canute the Great dies
          in 1035 the Danish supremacy over Norway is exchanged in a
          Treaty of Friendship, Co-operation and Mutual Assistance. It
          was settled that if one of the two realm's kings should die
          without heirs, then the other would succeed him.
   1042
          King Hardeknud of Denmark dies without an heir, and Denmark and
          Norway is again united - now under King Magnus.
   1047
          A retired colonel from Constantinople, later called Harald
          Hårdråde, and actually an uncle of King Magnus, returned to his
          native country and made demands on half of the kingdom. As King
          Magnus refused, the uncle, allied with a claimant to the Danish
          kingdom. King Magnus was defeated and the union between Denmark
          and Norway was split.
   1066
          Harald (Hårdråde) killed in the battle of Stamford Bridge while
          attempting to conquer England. Viking raids come to an end.
   1184
          After a civil war, the illegitimate son of King Sigurd, Sverre,
          is acknowledged as sole king. He consolidated the power of
          monarchy, created a new nobility and replaced an aristocratic
          administration with royal officials. His firm hand in ruling
          the church led Pope Innocent III to excommunicate him and lay
          Norway under interdict.
   1261/62
          Greenland and Iceland are subjected to Norwegian rule.
   1266
          King Magnus VI Lagabøter (Law-Mender) ended a lingering war
          with Scotland by selling the Isle of Man and the Hebrides to
          Scotland.
   1274
          Magnus VI introduces a general code of laws which remains in
          use for more than four centuries, replacing local legal systems
          with a unified code for the entire kingdom. It strengthened the
          position of the monarch by treating crime not as a private
          matter but as an offense against king and country. Magnus also
          promulgated municipal laws and accepted a basically independent
          status for the church.
   1319
          The three-years old King Magnus of Norway is elected King of
          Sweden too. This marks in many ways the end of Norway as an
          independent kingdom, although the Norwegian magnates in the
          Norwegian Senate (Council of the Realm) will continue to meet
          for several hundreds of years.
   1349-50
          Black plague, "Svartedauen", kills one third of Norways
          inhabitants.
   1379
          Marriage ties linked Norway with both Sweden and Denmark, and
          Queen Margarete, the wife of Haakon VI, succeeded in gaining
          control of the country as their son the king was only five
          years old. (He had, by the way, been elected King of Denmark
          already.)
   1387
          The under-age king died, and with him the Norwegian royal house
          died out. The nobles of the Senate (the Council of the Realm)
          elected Erik of Pomerania, Margarethe's grandnephew, as their
          king. Margarethe is appointed Regent and unites Norway, Sweden,
          and Denmark in the Union of Kalmar.
                  _______________________________________________
          
   1536
          Norway becomes a subject of the Danish crown, little more than
          a Danish province. Danish becomes the written language of
          Norway. Reformation makes Norway Lutheran.
   1645
          The provinces of Jämtland and Härjedalen are ceded to Sweden
          after Denmark-Norway's participation in the Thirty Years' War.
          In 1658, Bohuslän is lost to Sweden, too.
   1716-18
          Sweden attacks Norway, but has to retreat when king Karl XII is
          killed at Fredrikshald.
                  _______________________________________________
          
   1814
          The peace treaty of Kiel gives Norway to Sweden. Norway
          declares independence at Eidsvoll, but after a short war
          against Sweden Norway agrees to a personal union with Sweden.
          The Norwegian constitution was written.
   1905
          The union with Sweden falls apart and Norway becomes an
          independent kingdom. The Danish prince Karl becomes king Haakon
          VII of Norway.
   1940
          The Altmark Incident
          February 16th British blockaders discovered the German war-ship
          Graf Spee heading home along the Norweigan coast with 299
          British merchant seamen captured. The Brititsh Admiralty
          ordered their rescue at all costs. The destroyer Cossack
          pursued the Altmark into Jøssing fjord near Stavanger, and
          despite Norweigan protests boarded and captured her, releasing
          the prisoners. Norweigan protests of this violation died away
          in the face of British proof that Norway had permitted an armed
          vessel to take refuge in neutral waters.
          April 2-3rd Germany's naval forces start their journey to
          occupy Norway and Denmark, operation Weserübung.
          April 8th the British Navy placed mines in Norwegian
          territorial waters off North Norway, in an attempt to halt the
          shipment of Swedish iron ore over the port of Narvik. This
          concurrence of events was purely coincidental. The German
          occupation of Norway had been planned in meticulous detail
          months in advance and had no connection with the British
          mine-laying.
          Germany attacks Norway on 9th of April, and after two months of
          resistance completes the occupation. The Norwegian king and
          government flee to England. The leader of Norways National
          Socialist party, Vidkun Quisling, is nominated by Hitler to
          form a puppet regime.
   1941-45
          The Norwegian resistance, "Hjemmefronten", is organized. With
          its 50,000 members it made life more difficult for the Nazi
          occupiers in Norway, while many Norwegians joined British or
          American forces to fight the Germans. The Norwegian merchant
          fleet played a vital role in aiding the Allies. Although it
          lost half of its fleet, the country recovered quickly after the
          war.
   1945
          Germany surrenders to the Allies and the Nazi-occupation ends
          in Norway.
   1949
          Norway joins NATO.
   1957
          Olav V becomes king after the death of Haakon VII.
   1970s
          Large oil finds in the North Sea make Norway prosperous.
   1972
          Norway holds a referendum about joining the EEC: the people
          vote NO.
   1991
          On Olav's death in January, his son Harald V succeeded him as
          the king of Norway.
   1994
          A referendum about joining the EU will was held November
          27-28th. Again, the Norwegians voted "NO" by a clear majority
          and thus remained outside the union while Sweden and Finland
          joined.
          

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