06-07-2017, 12:12 AM
#1
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...the Norwegian Parliament managed one of their very few unanimous declaration:
Quote:Since all the members of the cabinet have resigned their positions; since His Majesty the King has declared his inability to obtain for the country a new government; and since the constitutional monarchy has ceased to exist, the Storting hereby authorizes the cabinet that resigned today to exercise the powers held by the King in accordance with the Constitution of Norway and relevant laws - with the amendments necessitated by the dissolution of the union with Sweden under one King, resulting from the fact that the King no longer functions as a Norwegian King.

Apparently, since the main 'meat' of the declaration was in an aside to the main clause, it took the Swedes a little while to realise that Norway had - in essence - rebelled, conducted a palace coup, and tossed the Norwegian-Swedish Union onto the garbage heap of history. Pre-empting anticipated Swedish demands, a pleibicite was conducted in mid August, with an almost unbelievable 99.95% votes for the actions undertaken by the Parliament. Tensions were still running high on both sides of the border, and war was looming between the two nations until mid October - Norway would likely have lost such a war due to Sweden's numerical superiority on land and at sea, but the Norwegians had tailored their forces to counter Swedish tactics (machine-guns against packed infantry formations, torpedo-boats against the Swedish coastal battleships) and their politics against Swedish diplomacy (Great Britain was - more or less - on Norway's side in the conflict)... a Swedish victory would have been hollow and costly.

Looking back it's amazing things went as smoothly as they did... and despite a fair bit of good natured bickering between us, Norway and Sweden have more in common than what sets us apart these days Smile

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 06-07-2017, 03:57 AM
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So, is this your equivalent of America's Declaration of Independence?

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 06-07-2017, 05:13 AM
#3
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I love to hear about bloodless coups.

I think it was Estonia that sang their way to freedom. If I have the country correct it's a really great story and one that they can be very proud of. Similar to the Norwegian one you told us about.

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 06-07-2017, 05:33 AM
#4
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No, that would be the 17th of May 1814 when we declared ourself independent - we just were forced to have a common King with the Swedes from fall that year... our history is complicated Tongue

Short version? Lemme see...

Around 872 Norway was - according to the sagas - gathered into one kingdom by Harald Fairhair, and grew in power until it also covered Iceland, Orkney, Shetland, Faroe, Greenland, parts of Scotland and Ireland, Vinland, Isle of Man, several parts of what today is Sweden, as well as claiming control of Finnmark and Lapland and taxing most of the Kola Peninsula.

Then the Black Death happened, and basically wiped out most of the Norwegian aristocracy... which more or less forces Norway into a union with Denmark and Sweden in 1397 (Kalmar Union). While the Norwegian Queen was the one taking the initiative to the union, we quickly turned into a minor party... and after the Swedes pulled out in 1523, Norway sort of ended being an independent nation in union with Denmark and started being considered a part of Denmark.

Cue a few hundred years of on and off wars with the Swedes, during which the Danish kings losts bits of old Norway; Herjedalen, Jämtland and Båhuslen being the big ones.

Then the Napoleonic Wars rolled around, and Great Britan forced Denmark-Norway into the war on the French side (look up the Battle of Copenhagen 1807), and since the French lost that war in 1814 the winners decided to give Norway (but not all the bits overseas) to Sweden as a compensation for Sweden loosing Finland to Russia in 1807 (it probably made sense at the time).

Given that Norway had suffered from Swedish hands during the Nordic Wars, and inspired by the American Revolution as well as the French, the Norwegians pretty much said "screw that", called up a constitutional assembly and declared independence. Unsurprisingly the Swedes were none too pleased, and promptly attacked.

Much to the surprise of all involved, the Norwegian forces - untrained, underequipped and malnutritioned after years of British blockade - held their own fairly well.. so well in fact that the Swedes had to allow Norway to be an independent Kingdom with our own constitution, but under a common King and with the Swedes in charge of foreign policy

While the result wasn't too popular in Norway, and grew even less so as the 19th century dragged on, it was better than being conquered outright and made into a part of Sweden. Until, as mentioned, we in 1905 had built up our armed forces to the point where a war would be too costly for the Swedes and got rid of the Swedish King... in an aside to the main clause of a parliamentary declaration Smile

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 06-07-2017, 06:44 AM
#5
  • Beau
  • Active Member
  • Westchester, NY
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Thank you, Hans, for that most interesting history!

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 06-07-2017, 09:19 AM
#6
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(06-07-2017, 05:33 AM)WegianWarrior Wrote: No, that would be the 17th of May 1814 when we declared ourself independent - we just were forced to have a common King with the Swedes from fall that year... our history is complicated Tongue

Short version? Lemme see...

Around 872 Norway was - according to the sagas - gathered into one kingdom by Harald Fairhair, and grew in power until it also covered Iceland, Orkney, Shetland, Faroe, Greenland, parts of Scotland and Ireland, Vinland, Isle of Man, several parts of what today is Sweden, as well as claiming control of Finnmark and Lapland and taxing most of the Kola Peninsula.

Then the Black Death happened, and basically wiped out most of the Norwegian aristocracy... which more or less forces Norway into a union with Denmark and Sweden in 1397 (Kalmar Union). While the Norwegian Queen was the one taking the initiative to the union, we quickly turned into a minor party... and after the Swedes pulled out in 1523, Norway sort of ended being an independent nation in union with Denmark and started being considered a part of Denmark.

Cue a few hundred years of on and off wars with the Swedes, during which the Danish kings losts bits of old Norway; Herjedalen, Jämtland and Båhuslen being the big ones.

Then the Napoleonic Wars rolled around, and Great Britan forced Denmark-Norway into the war on the French side (look up the Battle of Copenhagen 1807), and since the French lost that war in 1814 the winners decided to give Norway (but not all the bits overseas) to Sweden as a compensation for Sweden loosing Finland to Russia in 1807 (it probably made sense at the time).

Given that Norway had suffered from Swedish hands during the Nordic Wars, and inspired by the American Revolution as well as the French, the Norwegians pretty much said "screw that", called up a constitutional assembly and declared independence. Unsurprisingly the Swedes were none too pleased, and promptly attacked.

Much to the surprise of all involved, the Norwegian forces - untrained, underequipped and malnutritioned after years of British blockade - held their own fairly well.. so well in fact that the Swedes had to allow Norway to be an independent Kingdom with our own constitution, but under a common King and with the Swedes in charge of foreign policy

While the result wasn't too popular in Norway, and grew even less so as the 19th century dragged on, it was better than being conquered outright and made into a part of Sweden. Until, as mentioned, we in 1905 had built up our armed forces to the point where a war would be too costly for the Swedes and got rid of the Swedish King... in an aside to the main clause of a parliamentary declaration Smile


Wonderful read !


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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 06-07-2017, 12:51 PM
#7
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The Cliffs Notes version of Norwegian history!  Nicely done for non-Norwegians.

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 06-07-2017, 03:20 PM
#8
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Hans,
Your usual excellently detailed work! I'm finding more and more in my Norwegian heritage that intrigues me. I'm strongly considering how to approach dealing with the complications you briefed me on. Odda looks like a version of the Garden of Eden. It may be a couple of years, but I'll let you know when I arrive :-)
Regards,
RON

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 06-07-2017, 03:33 PM
#9
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I love history, especially history of country and the people who shaped it,  Thanks so much for the little peek into your fine country, Hans!

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 06-07-2017, 06:38 PM
#10
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Fantastic read!

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