History of Norway

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Flag of Norway, officially adopted on July 17, 1821.

This article provides an overview of the history of Norway from prehistoric times to the present day.

History of Norway up to Harald Hårfagre

Main article: History of Norway before Harald Hårfagre

The beginning of the settlement of Norway is estimated at around 10,500 BC. BC. At that time the west coast was already free of ice. Stone tools found on Rennesøy date back to 10,000 BC. Dated. These tools are usually made from flint . The residents were not sedentary hunters and gatherers . The oldest known residential area is in Blomvåg in the municipality of Øygarden in Hordaland, with artifacts dating back to around 10,500 BC. To be dated.

Around 9000 BC The Fosna complex (as a collective term for the oldest individual cultures in Norway) is used, which dates back to around 4500 BC. Lasted. It is named after the place where it was found in Fosna near Kristiansund . At the same time, the Komsa culture arose in the far north , named after the Komsafjell site near Alta . The rock carvings began around this time . From them it can be seen that the use of boats began early.

In the late Mesolithic (around 7500 BC) axes made from diabase appeared. Around 7000 BC A warm period began for about 3000 years, which shifted the tree line upwards, so that the hunters could migrate to higher regions. In this region there are over 1000 places from before 4000 BC. Known. From the time 5000 BC A variant of the comb pottery culture was found at the Varangerfjord . People seem to have settled down on the coast. Agriculture began in the southeast around 4000 BC. A. The shards of the cord ceramics and the funnel cup culture date from this time . One controversial theory assumes immigration from the east to Finnmark via the White Sea and the Kola Peninsula .

From 3300 BC Megalithic tombs of the funnel beaker culture ( dolmen from Rødtangen , dolmen from Skjeltorp ) have been found in southeast Norway . A social stratification began. The battle ax culture spread in southern Norway . The motifs of the rock carvings changed from hunting scenes to agricultural scenes. But around 2500 BC Agriculture seems to be systematically disappearing again.

From around 2000 BC The first bronze objects were found. In Scandinavian archeology, the following time is called the Metal Age . Stone tools were still used, but the aristocracy increasingly used bronze objects as status symbols, but also brass and other alloys. The core area of ​​the finds lies in the southwest and the connection to Jutland can be considered secure. Agriculture increased again. Trade connections over great distances can now also be detected. But they usually end on the east coast, i.e. in the Oslofjord and Bohuslän .

Around 1000 BC Chr. Cremation replaced the hitherto common burial. Around 500 BC The use of iron began. The construction of boats using the Kraweel construction method spread rapidly.

After the turn of the century, the influence of the Roman Empire was clearly noticeable. The burial came up again with rich grave goods. Goods from northern Italy reached Norway on a large scale. The migration of peoples did not leave any particular traces in Norway. Shipbuilding made advances through the use of iron nails. The taste also changed. The ornamentation switched from geometric shapes to animal ornamentation. The lively trade contacts around the North Sea made the North Sea a Germanic inland sea. The grave goods became more and more abundant over time, the addition of weapons in certain circles the rule. The northern route from the southern tip of Norway along the coast to the far north became the main artery. The Karmsund as the only passage near Haugesund grew into a key position. A chief on Karmøy controlled the traffic. It is likely that contact with Roman culture led to the development of runic writing . The oldest runic script is dated to AD 200. The script was used regularly until the end of the 7th century.

While the leading personalities were previously determined according to their descent, a new type of ruler became noticeable who called himself a king and was determined according to his ability: It was the army and sea kings who did not have an area but a team for exercised the authority of command during a certain enterprise. With the improvement of the transport possibilities, the connections between the chiefs became more and more extensive, and marriages over long distances were no longer uncommon. This was also strengthened by the custom of entrusting sons to other chiefs for education. In 551 AD, Jordanes reported for the first time about Norwegian tribes in his work De origine actibusque Getarum .

Around 550, prosperity suddenly broke off. One explanation, if not universally accepted, is an epidemic that struck the rest of Europe in the sixth century. This is where the period boundary between the Older and the Younger Iron Age is set, which then extended to the Viking Age in the 9th century. A number of cultural changes are identified: the ornamentation expanded into wickerwork, the armament was adapted to the Franconian armament, the language changed to the well-known Norrøn by breaking up long words with prefixes and suffixes, and the grave goods became more sparse, since the Avars cut ties with Byzantium .

This period was the time when some families rose to become a local aristocracy and petty kings had control of several villages or entire districts. "The time of the minor kingdoms" describes the two centuries before the Viking Age. From the 7th century onwards the connection to Central Europe increased again, agriculture flourished again and the population grew. Iron production became more effective and increased by leaps and bounds. Mighty burial mounds from this time tell of the upswing among the leading families. However, the newly flourishing mainland and English urban culture in Norway at this time has no parallel. During this time the first small empires emerged: Ringerike , Romerike , Hadeland and Hedmark , and a large legal association was established in Trøndelag .

The beginning of the Viking Age is set in the middle of the 8th century . The Viking was a merchant and a warrior. Naturally, the sources report more about the warlike ventures than about trade trips. There are various theories about the cause of the great raids: population pressure and the possibilities offered by the ships that have since developed. The raids stretched as far as the Portuguese coast. Vikings is a collective term for Scandinavian pirates who returned home with prey. In the west it was a question of Danes and Norwegians. Later the Vikings stayed on site. At first they only hibernated; but then they settled down permanently. From this point onwards one speaks of Norman settlement, as in Normandy , England ( Danelag ) or Ireland. Society is shaped by family associations that were patriarchal. Although women were not on an equal footing with men, they could take over functions from men, run a farm or equip a ship and go on trips.

For religion see the article North Germanic Religion .

The time from Harald Hårfagre to Magnus Barfot


The most important source at this time is the saga literature of the 12th and 13th centuries. Their reliability is the subject of saga criticism and is highly controversial. The writing took place 300 years after the events. Today it is compared with the archaeological finds.

Harald Hårfagre

Today it is assumed that several chiefs resided on Karmøy who fought each other in the 9th century. Harald Hårfagre took advantage of this situation to conquer the island. In any case, it came from outside, but where it came from is unclear.

After Harald had consolidated his rule, there was a fight with other petty kings south of Karmøy down to the Boknfjord, which he was victorious. The place Hafrsfjord for the battle is likely to be historical, but the year 872 was calculated from older dates. Today the date is assumed to be shortly before 900. As a result of the battle, Snorri reports that Harald found no resistance anywhere in Norway afterwards. From this it was concluded in the past that he had combined all of Norway into one empire. As far as we know today, this is probably a late glorification owed to the first king, to whom his successors invoked. The tradition reports contradicting things about the importance of the battle in the process of unification. Harald's influence extended at most to the middle of the Norwegian coast, and his kingship on certain taxes from the subjugated petty kings, which he brought as Jarle into a certain dependency. In return for the taxes he had to take care of the external defense. This led to his campaigns to the Orkneys and the rest of the Scottish islands, from where emigrated Vikings repeatedly undertook raids on Norwegian coasts. Harald died in 932.

After the battle in Hafrsfjord, Norway can be roughly divided into three domains: Østlandet , which was under Danish rule, Vestlandet under the Harfagre family, and Trøndelag and Northern Norway under the Ladejarlen . After the rule of the Harfagre family consolidated, the subjugation of the Ladejarle began, which was completed in the 11th century. The next goal was to gain the area around Oslo , which only succeeded permanently after the death of the Danish king Waldemars II .

Erik Blodøks

After Harald's death, Erik Blodøks took over the rule. He continued the military style of his father. But after two years of rule he had to flee from his brother Håkon, who came from England, with his whole family.

Håkon the good

Around 935 Håkon the Good took over the rule. He had a more sociable style of government. He too only ruled in the south, as the list of his allies shows in the last battle he waged against the sons of Erik, supported by the Danish King Harald Blue Tooth.

Harald Blauzahn and the sons of Erik

Harald Blauzahn received homage as King of Norway in Tønsberg in 960 . The people had grown tired of war and now accepted the sons of Erik as kings. In 961 he set up the Erik sons as tributary sub-kings over Norway. The eldest of Erik's sons, Harald Gråfell , together with his brother Erling Eriksson killed Sigurd Ladejarl at the Trondheimfjord, the former support of Håkon des Guten in the north. Harald Gråfell was the first king to control trade across the entire west coast of Norway. This was entirely in the spirit of Harald Blauzahn, because the trade in furs, seal skin for ropes and walrus teeth from the Sami area was an important source of income. The profit from this was considerable for Harald Gråfell, so that he soon felt that the support of Harald Blauzahn, which was connected with tribute payments, was no longer so important. There was a conflict with Harald Blauzahn. At a discussion meeting around 970, he was lured into a trap by the Limfjord and killed. The other brothers fled the country.

Håkon Sigurdsson

Harald Blauzahn changed sides and appointed the son of the murdered Sigurd Ladejarl , Håkon Sigurdsson, to Jarl over Norway. Around 978 he struck King Ragnfred, Erik's last son, and killed him. But here, too, there was a rift. Because Harald Blauzahn became a Christian around 960, but Håkon did not. Around 985, Håkon opposed a royal order to proselytize Norway and upheld the old belief in gods. Harald Blauzahn then carried out a punitive expedition to Norway, which was refused by Håkon. This ended the rule of Harald Blauzahns in Norway, and Håkon had an independent sole rule. However, he remained a Jarl and did not seek royal dignity, which suggests that the Jarl title was highly regarded in society at the time. Håkon Jarl soon became unpopular for his brutal behavior and was murdered around 995 after Olav Tryggvason came to Norway.

Olav Tryggvason

Olav Tryggvason was a grandson of Harald Hårfagre. Together with Harald Blauzahn's son Sven Gabelbart , he had hired in England and collected the Danegeld from Æthelred . Then he returned to Norway around 995. He had been baptized in England and began missionary work again in 996 on the west coast of Norway. He minted the first Norwegian coins, but only three of them were found abroad. The sagas ascribe the founding of the city of Trondheim to him. Around 1000 he went with a fleet in the Baltic Sea to the Danish king Sven Forkbeard against the turning assist. He was killed in the battle of Svolder , from which neither time nor place can be identified.

Sven Gabelbart

After the death of Olav Tryggvason, Sven Gabelbart ruled Norway. He used as Jarle Erik Håkonarson, possibly also his brother Sven, the sons of Håkon Jarls, in Vestland and Trøndelag. In the east, petty kings still seem to have ruled as vassals.

Olav the saint

In 1015, Saint Olav appeared from England, where he had participated in Viking battles. In 1016 he defeated Sven, the son of Håkon Jarl, and was accepted as king. He laid down the main features of the Norwegian church constitution. However, he always had to deal with resistance from the aristocracy in Trøndelag. With their expropriation, he made the second most powerful man in Norway, Erling Skjalgsson , his enemy. He defeated and killed him in 1027 in a battle on the Boknfjord. This led to the apostasy of many allies. Canute the Great , whom Olav refused to submit to in 1025, moved to Norway in 1028 with a large fleet and Olav fled to his brother-in-law Jaroslav in Novgorod . In 1030 he returned in the hope of regaining his rule, but the coastal aristocracy was against him and he fell on July 29, 1030 in the Battle of Stiklestad . Knut the Great then appointed his illegitimate son Sven Alfivason as Jarl over Norway, which now belongs to his North Sea region. This was under the decisive influence of his mother Alfiva . Their style of government was tyrannical and led to resistance among the population, which was also fueled by the formation of church legends about Olav. In 1031 he was declared a saint.

Magnus the good

Canute the Great died in 1035. His son Sven was expelled from Norway. The aristocrats who killed Olav now called his illegitimate son Magnus back from Novgorod and made him king. He took back the controversial laws of his predecessor Sven, which is said to have earned him the nickname “ the good guy ”. In 1041/1042 Magnus moved to Denmark and was accepted as king there. He was now king over Norway and Denmark. In 1045 his uncle Harald Hardråde returned from Byzantium laden with gold and, as the brother of Olav the Holy, laid claim to the Norwegian royal crown. In 1046 there was a settlement according to which Harald became King of Norway while Magnus remained King of Denmark. The division of the empire was complete.

Harald Hardråde

Harald Hardråde was King of Norway from 1047 to 1066. He was one of the more warlike kings, led various raids in Denmark and was killed on September 25, 1066 at the Battle of Stamford while trying to conquer the English crown as successor to Canute the Mighty .

Olav Kyrre

Harald had two sons: Olav and Magnus. Under the Norwegian right of succession, they both became kings of Norway. Nothing is known about Magnus, except that he donated land to the church on the Isle of Man , as his brother Olav took the nickname of Nidaros (later Trondheim) and died in 1069. From then on, Olav was sole ruler. He was a scholar who devoted himself to his books in Bohuslän until his death in 1093. The founding of Bergen was attributed to him (probably wrongly) .

Magnus Barfot

Olav was followed by his son Magnus Barfot . He is again described as a warrior king. In 1098/1099 he moved to the Scottish Isles and subjugated the Orkneys, the Faroe Islands , the Shetlands and the Isle of Man. He let his son Sigurd rule Orkney. In 1102 he undertook a second campaign to where he was killed in 1103. He is considered the last Viking king.

The Christian Middle Ages

The sons of Magnus Barfot

After Magnus Barfot's death, his three sons Sigurd (Jarsalfari) , Øystein and Olav became kings. Nothing is known of Olav. He died early. Øystein took care of the internal consolidation of the empire, expanded Bergen and founded the Munkeliv monastery . Sigurd was the first European king to go on a crusade and supported Baldwin in conquering Sidon in 1110. During her reign, Norway was detached from the Archdiocese of Hamburg / Bremen and placed under the Archdiocese of Lund . Øystein died in 1123 and Sigurd was sole king until his death in 1130.

Civil war

Harald Gille

Sigurd had chosen his son Magnus as his successor. Then came Harald Gille from Ireland and claimed to be Sigurd's brother. After passing the iron test , Sigurd recognized him, but asked him not to take over the royal dignity until after the death of his son Magnus. This contradicted the old Norwegian right to succession to the throne, according to which all sons of a king were equally entitled to the royal dignity. In 1134 the civil war broke out between Magnus and Harald. This war soon spread to all three northern empires, as all kings were linked to one another. Harald Gille sought support from the Danish King Erik Emune . He attacked Magnus in Bergen, had him blinded, castrated and chopped off a foot and put him in the Munkholmen monastery . So he got the nickname Magnus the Blind .

The custom of kings to keep mistresses on their bases led to a confusing number of equal crown pretenders. In 1136, Sigurd Slembe appeared, claiming to be another illegitimate son of Magnus Barfot. After he had narrowly escaped an assassination attempt by Harald Gille, he attacked him in 1136 in Bergen and killed him in his mistress's bed.

Inge Krogrygg, Sigurd Munn and Øystein

Harald Gille's followers immediately had his four-year-old son Sigurd Munn proclaimed king on the Øyrathing. At the same time, his one-year-old brother Inge Krogrygg was proclaimed king at the Borgarthing in Oslo . Sigurd Slembe escaped to Denmark after a lost battle with Magnus the Blind, who had been freed from the monastery. From there he undertook raids to southern Norway, was captured in the Oslofjord by the troops of the child kings and defeated. Magnus the Blind was killed in battle, Sigurd captured and tortured to death.

In 1142 another illegitimate son of Harald Gille came to Norway, Øystein Haraldsson . He moved further west in 1150, occupied the Orkneys and carried out Viking raids in Scotland.

Around 1154 the Archdiocese of Nidaros was founded by Cardinal Nikolaus Breakspear . After his departure, tensions between the three brothers increased. Inge found out about his two brothers' plan to remove him at the next joint negotiations. That prompted him to launch a preemptive strike. In 1155 Sigurd was defeated and killed in a battle near Bergen. In 1157 Øystein was defeated and killed in Bohuslän. Now Inge was sole ruler. The main ally was an aristocrat named Erling Skakke , husband of Sigurd Jarsalfari's daughter Kristin.

The followers of the killed kings organized the resistance against Inge. They gathered around Håkon Herdebrei , an illegitimate son of Sigurd Munn. In 1158/1159 he was proclaimed co-king. This led to King Inges cruel raids in the northwest. Inge defeated Håkon in a battle, and Håkon had to flee to Trøndelag, where he gathered new troops. With these he moved to Oslo and Sweden to Denmark. But in 1159 there was another fight between the two in the Oslofjord, in which Inge was killed. Håkon was now the sole ruler of Norway.

Erling Skakke and Magnus Erlingsson

Erling Skakke's son Magnus Erlingsson was proclaimed king in 1161 at the age of five. Against the promise to leave the Oslofjord to him, the Danish king Waldemar supported him against Håkon Herdebrei. In 1162 Erling defeated and killed King Håkon. Now his opponents rallied around Sigurd Markusfostre , another son of Sigurd Munn. While Magnus was only worthy of a king through his mother, Sigurd was the son of a king, but unlike Magnus, he was not born in wedlock, which Magnus preferred from the point of view of the Church.

In 1163 Magnus was solemnly crowned in Bergen as the first Norwegian king. A Reich Assembly and a Reich Synod were also held on this occasion. The coronation oath and church consecration gave the Norwegian kingship a new meaning. The right of succession to the throne was changed at the imperial assembly, stipulating that the oldest legitimate son of a king should become king.

Erling tried to break the deal with King Waldemar, but Waldemar came to Oslo in 1165 and received homage. After several campaigns, Erling's wife reached peace with Waldemar in 1170. She divorced Erling and moved out of the country. Erling then killed her son from her previous association with Sigurd Munn, Markus.

A few years later riots broke out in Bohuslän, the focus of which was Øystein Møyla , the son of King Øystein Haraldson and grandson of Harald Gille. Telemark joined the uprising. The insurgents, the so-called Birkebeiner , received support in Trøndelag, and Øystein was proclaimed king in 1176. He moved south to attack Oslo again but was defeated and killed in 1177. The leader of the Birkebeiner , Sverre , claimed to be the son of King Sigurd Munn. He was supported from Sweden due to family ties. In 1179 he struck Erling near Bergen and killed him. Magnus Erlingsson escaped with difficulty. But the church was on his side. During the war that followed, Øystein had to leave the country because Sverre won one victory after another. Finally, in 1182, there was a comparison between Øystein and Sverre. In 1184 Sverre defeated Magnus in a sea battle on the Sognefjord, and Magnus was killed. Øystein died in the same year. He was succeeded by the previous Bishop of Stavanger. He had always been a sharp opponent of Sverre.

The Bagler Wars

The winner Sverre immediately faced a new opponent, Jon Kuvlung , who claimed to be the son of Inge Krogrygg . In autumn 1188 he was honored as king on the Øyrating, in December he was already killed. Next came Sigurd Brenna , also an alleged son of King Inges. He too was defeated and killed. It came to a conflict between Sverre and the archbishop over the mutual powers. Archbishop Erik had to flee to Lund in 1190.

Between 1189 and 1191 there were further local uprisings, all of which were usually put down by the local farmers. Only the permanent opposition of the church was to be taken really seriously. The next uprising started in the Orkneys. From there came the party of Erling Skakke and his son King Magnus, led by Sigurd, who claimed to be a son of Magnus. In 1194 the fleet was defeated in a sea battle in front of Bergen and Sigurd was killed. The suspicion of having instigated the uprising fell on Bishop Nikolas Arnason of Oslo, which meant immediate death for him. In the summer of 1194, Pope Celestine III presented himself . behind the archbishop and threatened anyone with the ban who questioned the rights of the church as claimed by Archbishop Øystein and Archbishop Erik. Bishop Nikolas was compelled to coronate Sverre. Thereupon all clergy involved in the coronation were banned by the Pope. Archbishop Erik then banished the king from Lund and imposed an interdict on Norway . Erik now used means of propaganda, invited the bishops to an imperial synod and declared that the ban was a rumor invented in Denmark.

Bishop Nikolas moved to Lund in 1195 and compared himself to the archbishop. Upon his return, he founded the Bagler (dt. Krumm Stäbler . Bagall = crozier) -party. The figurehead was Erling Steinvegg , an alleged son of Magnus Erlingsson. But Bishop Nikolas retained military and political leadership. Erling was paid homage to the Borgarthing. The Baglers ruled the Oslofjord and Oppland . Sverre intensified his propaganda and had a learned clergyman write a pamphlet in which he proved that the ban was unlawful and therefore ineffective.

In 1196, the 1st Bagler War broke out. In 1197 there was a battle in the Oslofjord with a victory for Sverre, in 1198 the Baglers won before Trondheim. In the next naval battle in 1199 the baglers lost. Sverre pushed shipbuilding. In the following three years the better equipment and better combat experience of Sverre's troops in the further fighting around the Oslofjord was decisive for this phase of the war. The baglers were defeated and in 1202 Sverre captured Bergen. He fell ill and died.

His son Håkon followed his father. He brought back the bishops who had fled the land and compared himself with them in the summer of 1202. The settlement agreement was drafted so imprecisely that both sides could live with it. The situation changed when the king died in 1204. The Birkebeiner elected his four-year-old grandson Guttorm Sigurdsson as king. Sverre's nephew Håkon took over the management of the empire, and because he was inaccessible to any sensible advice, he was soon nicknamed Galen (the madman). The baglers who moved to Denmark did not want to accept this. They gathered around the alleged son Magnus Erlingssons Erling Steinvegg and had the support of King Waldemar II . In the meantime the troops determined the king. Erling was elected king in 1204 by the baglers in Oslo. In the same year, little Guttorm died. The Birkebeiner chose Inge Bårdsson from the old Trønder family, son of Sverre's sister Cecilia Sigurdsdatter with the nobleman Bård Guttormsson . Håkon remained the military leader and Inge retired to Trøndelag. He forced the baglers back to Denmark. In the second Baglerkrieg which followed, only professional soldiers fought each other without any significant success. When Erling Steinvegg died on the Bagler side in 1207, there was general exhaustion from war. Bishop Nikolas managed to get his nephew Inges Philipp Simonsson elected as king, which led to renewed fighting. But the support of the troops in the population had disappeared, so that in 1208 the peace agreement of Kvitsøy came about, on which the empire was divided into three parts between Inge, Håkon and Philipp. Under pressure from the Birkebeiner, Philipp should not accept the title of king and recognize Inge as the upper king. He led it anyway and continued to use the royal seal.

When Jarl Håkon died in 1214, he took over his kingdom. After his death in 1217, Håkon Håkonsson became king. Philip also died in 1217. Initially, Ragnvald Hallkjelsson, a nephew of Magnus Erlingssons, took power. But he was slain on a thing. In 1218 there was a reconciliation between Baglers and Birkebeiners. Local revolts still broke out in the southeast, but were led more by bands of robbers who gathered around obscure descendants of the king. At that time, however, full kingship also included ecclesiastical coronation. This did not happen until 1247. In 1260, the law of succession to the throne finally enshrined the monopoly for Norway. Under his government a number of legislative improvements were introduced and a radical legal reform was initiated, which his son was then to complete. Under him, Iceland signed a state treaty with Norway, "gamli sáttmáli" (the old treaty), which brought Iceland under the sovereignty of Norway and ended the free state period. He died in 1262 on a campaign against the Scots who attacked the Orkneys.

Magnus Håkonsson

Magnus Håkonsson built an efficient and highly educated diplomatic staff. So it came to a treaty with Scotland in 1266, against which his father had waged war. In this contract he left the Isle of Man and the Hebrides to Scotland for a one-off payment of 4000 and an annual payment of 100 marks sterling. Allegedly the 100 marks were half of the Norwegian income from the two colonies. In return, Scotland recognized Norway's sovereignty over the Shetlands and Orkneys. Payments were suspended by the Scottish side in 1270. That clouded relations with Scotland. At the end of his life things improved, however, and his son and successor Erik married Margaret, the daughter of the Scottish King Alexander III.

In general, his relationship with Sweden was also good, even if he supported Waldemar Birgerson, who was later defeated against Magnus I , in the Swedish controversy for the throne .

He was married to Ingeborg, the daughter of the Danish King Erik Plogpenning . After Erik's death there were disputes over the throne in Denmark, where his wife's right of inheritance also played a role. He managed to stay out of the argument.

His most important achievement was in the area of ​​legislation, which gave him the nickname " lagabæte " (law improver ). He replaced Frostathingslov and Borgathingslov with a uniform body of law in two legal books, the Landslov and the Bylov . There was a special version for Iceland, the Jónsbók . The Hirðskrá was amended. At the complaint of the Hanseatic people, he gave them extensive immunity , the beginning of the special rights for the Hanseatic people in Bergen.

In addition to the suffering plict , the previously applicable general conscription, he raised a professional army of around 1200 men.

He died in 1280. He was succeeded by his son Erik Magnusson .

Erik Magnusson

Erik Magnusson took over the royal office at the age of twelve. He was therefore under the tutelage of the Imperial Council. This resumed his grandfather's course of confrontation against the church and its aggressive foreign policy. This policy was directed against Denmark and the Hanseatic League. Relations only remained good with England and Scotland. The connection with Scotland was strengthened in 1281 by the marriage with the seven years older daughter Margaret. She brought a dowry of 14,000 silver marks into the marriage. In addition, Scottish payments for the Isle of Man and the Hebrides have resumed.

In 1280 there were renewed serious conflicts between the Imperial Council and the Church, which led to Archbishop Jon Raude's having to leave the empire together with the bishops of Oslo and Hamar in 1282. He died in Skara in Sweden that same year . Then there was a comparison with the church.

The policy against the Hanseatic League led to the Øresund being blocked . This forced negotiations that led to the Kalmar arbitration by King Waldemar Birgerssons in 1285 , according to which Norway had to pay 6,000 marks of silver and to grant the trade privileges again. This practically led to national bankruptcy in the following period. The Hanseatic League, however, was still prohibited from trading in the hinterland and trading north of Bergen. That was a separate peace between Norway and the northern German cities, in which Denmark was not included. The Imperial Council was therefore able to continue its anti-Danish policy. Ingeborg, the wife of King Magnus and daughter of the Danish King Erik Plogpening, was used as the basis. After the murder of Erik Klipping , the Danish aristocratic opposition was accused of perpetration and sent into exile. She came to Norway. At their head were Count Jakob von Nord- Halland . It had always been the goal of Norwegian politics to win Halland. In 1289 the war began with a large number of fleets sent to Denmark. In 1290 there was a second army campaign and the formation of fortified bridgeheads in Halland, which enabled control of the Øresund. In addition, Norway supported the opposition to Erik Menved . After the next military campaigns in 1293 and 1295, King Erik of Denmark offered settlement negotiations, which ended in the autumn of 1295 with an armistice in Hindsgavl on Funen. King Erik of Norway and his brother were given free power to dispose of the goods inherited from their mother in Denmark, and the exiles got their property back. The armistice was later renewed and lasted into the reign of Håkon V. The constant armament efforts overstretched the Norwegian budget and income, so that in 1285 there was an acute lack of money.

King Erik died on July 13, 1299 and his brother Håkon succeeded him on August 10.

Håkon Magnusson

Håkon Magnusson began his successor after his brother in 1299 with cleaning up the imperial council and in 1302 enacting a law on the powers of the imperial council in the exercise of guardianship and in 1308 enacting administrative regulations for the royal court. At the same time, the “Council of the King” became an independent royal governmental body, modeled on the rest of Europe. After the coronation oath of 1260 and 1273, the king was to supplement the laws with advice of good men. In the days of Håkon Håkonsson and Magnus lagabøte, the council of good men was still the diet. But in 1280 there was a major amendment to the law by the Reichsrat, in which this role was transferred to the Reichsrat. In 1308 King Magnus Håkonsson issued a comprehensive amendment to constitutional and administrative law. The main aim of this was to prevent the expansion of aristocratic power and its self-service abuse in the future, which was apparently torn down, especially during the guardianship of the minor King Erik. In the future no new Lendmenn and Jarle could be appointed as the King's Sons and Orkney-Jarle. In this way, the king wanted to control the composition of his court apparatus with newly appointed court officials himself. All administrative districts (Syssel) were transferred to new persons, to whom he had better access. The practical effect of this major administrative amendment of 1308 is, however, very controversial, as the personnel requirements for its implementation were not yet in place. He no longer selected his closest employees based on their status and wealth, but based on their education and ability. This brought about a certain degree of professionalism in the government. He received papal permission to build his chapels to a certain extent detached from the episcopal churches under the direction of a Kapellan (Kapellmagister). 14 royal chapels were built in the country, four of them with a college of priests: the Church of the Apostles in Bergen, St. Mary's Church in Oslo, St. Olav's Church on Avaldsnes and St. Michael's Church on Tønsberghus. In the clergy in these chapels the king found more reliable collaborators than the other clergymen. With the increasing expansion of writing in dealings with the rest of the country, the traveling royalty gradually changed into a stationary court. Norway began to become a state in the modern sense, although the term did not yet exist. But the term “ Norges kongens Rige ” (The Kingdom of the King of Norway) came up.

But the economic basis of this state was weak. The church institutions held around 40% of the property, the king around 7%. The state tax could not compete with the church tithe by a long way. The state revenues from fines, taxes, customs duties and duties from the crown possessions were relatively modest. This has to do with the Kalmar award on the one hand, and the low population density on the other. A committed foreign policy associated with costs could not be achieved.

Another aspect of his policy was the defense against the attempt of the Hanseatic League to conduct domestic trade contrary to the privileges. They led to corresponding bans, which also led to the prohibition of speculative purchases, i.e. buying up goods in rich years and selling them at inflated prices in lean years. But Norwegian foreign trade was also protected by export tariffs on foreign exporters. From 1294, foreign ships calling at Norwegian ports had to pay a skip bung = 160 kg of grain. During the continental famine years 1315 and 1316 (Lit .: Curschmann 1900, pp. 85, 208 f.) The king forbade the export of butter, clipfish and stockfish for foreign exporters who did not bring grain to Norway. This was one of the causes of the great plague epidemics of that time, which were brought in with the importation of grain (see plague epidemics in Norway ).

He continued his father's policy towards Sweden and Denmark, albeit unsuccessfully, by seeking Swedish support for action against King Erik Menved of Denmark in agreement with the local nobility opposition. Because he had betrothed his one-year-old daughter Ingebjørg to Erik, the twenty-year-old son of the Swedish King Birger . When Birger's sons rose up against their father, Norway suddenly found themselves on the side of the opposition in Sweden and Denmark. Erik fled to Norway and was enfeoffed with Bohuslän and Halland by the king. But Erik changed sides and compared himself to King Erik Menved and took Halland from him as a fief. With that, Norwegian politics had failed, and King Håkon had to compare himself with Erik Menved. He now betrothed his daughter Ingeborg to Erik's brother Magnus and began building the then impregnable Bohus fortress . The Swedish aristocratic opposition overthrew King Birger in 1318. Magnus Erikson was elected his successor in 1319. King Magnus died on May 8, 1319.

Magnus Erikson

Magnus Eriksson was the grandson of King Magnus and was three years old when he was also elected King of Norway after the death of his grandfather. Now both the Norwegian and the Swedish Imperial Council took over the guardianship in their respective countries. For the first time, the Reichsrat appears in a constitutional function. From 1323, the Imperial Council was headed by a governor who bore the title of " The King's Governor in Norway " and the royal seal. In 1327 there was also an Imperial Chancellor . That was the highly learned Pål Bårdsson , Doctor of Roman and Canon Law at Orléans University. In 1333 he became archbishop. The first task was to end the conflict between Russia and Norway / Sweden over the Sami territories. It was settled by a treaty in 1326, but the raids continued until the middle of the 14th century. The policy of restricting the Hanseatic League was continued.

In 1331 Magnus came of age under Swedish law and took over government affairs there, five years before coming of age in Norway. The governor in Norway resigned and in 1333 the chancellor became archbishop and resigned from office. After his marriage to Blanche von Namur in 1335, a conflict arose between the king and the aristocracy, partly because he claimed their income for himself, partly because he curtailed their privileges. In 1336 he was crowned for both realms in Stockholm. Representatives of the Norwegian state were absent from this ceremony. Tensions increased and in 1339 there was even a revolt in eastern Norway. There was a meeting with the Imperial Council, at which it was stated, among other things, that his son Erik, born in 1339, should become King of Sweden and his son, Håkon, born in 1340, should become King of Norway. This was a break with the Norwegian Succession Act of 1260, according to which the eldest son of a king would succeed him. He also changed his trade policy towards the Hanseatic League. He renewed the old trading privileges of the Hanseatic League. All merchants of the German Hanseatic League were granted duty exemption and unrestricted trading permits, as well as their own jurisdiction according to their laws and traditions. In fact, however, Norway's main trading partner was England.

During the great plague epidemic in 1348/49 , around 60% of the country's population died, which resulted in great social and economic upheavals. The upper class was hardest hit and was gradually replaced by Danes. The language changed as a result, and the country could no longer afford its own royal court.

Kalmar Union (1397-1523)

After Queen Margaret I of Denmark and Norway was also elected regent in the Kingdom of Sweden, the three countries were united in a union. In the Swedish city of Kalmar , Erich von Pommern , a nephew of Margaret I, was crowned King of the Union in 1397 , after he had previously been declared "heir of the kingdom" by the Norwegian Council of Nations in 1388. The union was codified in 1450 by a treaty in which the principle of the common choice of king is contained. The treaty was never ratified. In the Danish-ruled Union, Norway's position became weaker and weaker, while there were repeated clashes between Denmark and Sweden. After the Swedish nobility under Gustav I. Wasa rebelled against the Danish royal family and the Norwegian nobility also offered resistance, the last king of the Union Christian II was deposed from the throne in 1523. That meant the end of the Kalmar Union.

Union with Denmark (1523-1814)

After the dissolution of the Kalmarer Union, Norway was de jure in union with Denmark , but de facto became an autonomous Danish province . Through Christian III. the Reformation was officially introduced in Norway in 1536 . The theological basis for this was the Lutheran church order of Johannes Bugenhagen . As a result, the Norwegian church property was expropriated in favor of the crown and the king set himself up as head of the church. The clergy were thus politically disempowered. The majority of the officials came from Denmark. Danish was declared the sole language of the liturgy and royal administration. So the Norwegians had to go to Copenhagen to study. It was not until the end of the 18th century, when Norwegian national consciousness grew stronger, that Norwegians regained broader access to public office. In 1813, plans began to set up a Norwegian university in Christiania (Oslo), but this was not realized until the union with Sweden . Norway's ore mines had a certain economic importance for the entire Danish state . The administrative authorities responsible for this were the only institutions responsible for Norway alone. The Danish law firm in Copenhagen was responsible for all other matters . During the Napoleonic Wars , Norway was twice, 1801 and 1807-1814, separated from the Danish motherland by British naval blockades. In the last year of the war, 1814, Norway became a theater of war when Swedish troops tried to occupy the country. The fact that no military aid was expected from Denmark and the realization that Norway had managed for several years without administrative instructions from Copenhagen led to the beginning of the independence movement of 1814.

Union with Sweden (1814–1905)

The Danish king , who had been on Napoléon's side in the Napoleonic Wars , had to cede Norway to Sweden after the fall of Napoleon in the Peace of Kiel . On February 27, 1814, however, Norway proclaimed its independence in view of the planned union with Sweden and thus ended the Danish-Norwegian personal union. On May 17, 1814, a constituent assembly of Norwegian citizens met in Eidsvoll near Oslo , which discussed the Basic Law and passed the Norwegian constitution . The institutions and principles anchored in Grunnlov form the legislative foundation of the Norwegian state to this day. Men over 25 were granted the right to vote provided they were civil servants, owned taxable property as farmers, or owned certain property as townspeople. In a certain way, this meant an advantage for civil servants over townspeople, as they were more able to influence the rural population in forming political opinions. The orientation of the state towards the monarchy and its civil service strengthened the position of the embetsmen active in the civil service .

The Danish Prince Christian Friedrich was elected King of Norway. However, he was only able to hold his power for a few months because complete independence for Norway was not enforceable. Its role in the events of 1814 is controversial in history. A school oriented towards the national interests of Norway emphasizes his resistance to the Kiel Treaty and his hesitant behavior in the late summer of 1814. It sees him as a handyman of dynastic interests. In the course of a reassessment, his political skill as well as his work in favor of the independence of Norway will be recognized. In the Moss Convention , however, the Swedish Crown Prince Charles XIV granted Norway the retention of his constitution, so that the relationship between Norway and Sweden was merely a personal union - two states with the same head of state and a common foreign policy. Iceland , the Faroe Islands and Greenland , which originally belonged to the Kingdom of Norway, fell under the Kiel Treaty to Denmark.

Marcus Thrane gave essential impulses to the Norwegian labor movement that emerged from 1848 . He founded local workers 'associations and published the journal of the workers ' associations. From this came the Thranitter movement. At its peak, around 30,000 members were organized in 400 clubs. In the 1840s, the Scandinavian movement emerged, which aimed not only at the cultural communities of Sweden, Denmark and Norway, but also at their political cooperation. For Norway, however, this would have meant maintaining subordination in the union with Sweden. That is why circles from the growing urban citizenship, civil servants and the intelligentsia called for a reform of the state administration in favor of local self-government and real equality for Norway in the Union. Their leader was Johan Sverdrup together with the Storting MP Ole Gabriel Ueland , the representative of the "peasant opposition". In 1859 they founded a reform society which they wanted to develop into a national political party, but which fell apart again. The dispute over the terms of the union flared up again in 1859 when the question of royal Swedish governorship in Norway was raised. The Storting unilaterally abolished this office, invoking Norway's complete sovereignty over issues that, according to the Union Act of 1815, did not fall under Sweden's right of reservation. The Swedish King Oskar I objected to this decision . In 1865, on a Swedish initiative, a Swedish-Norwegian committee was formed to review the conditions of the union. In 1871, however, the Storting rejected proposals from this committee for the establishment of joint institutions in both countries. For the renewal of the national culture, the creation of a separate Norwegian written language based on Norwegian dialects, the so-called Landsmål , by Ivar Aasen was important in the 1850s . This was intended to distinguish it from the previously dominated Danish written language, the Riksmål .

Women were allowed to vote in regional elections as early as 1901. The prerequisite, however, was that they owned land or were married to landowners.

Dissolution of the Union (1905)

During the 18th and 19th centuries, a strong national and romantic popular movement for greater independence emerged in Norway, first within the Danish Empire, then for equality within the Swedish-Norwegian personal union. In Norway, a cultural boom flourished at this time (for example through Ibsen , Bjørnson and Edvard Grieg ), which also helped the national movement . This development intensified Norway's desire for complete independence. As early as 1892, the Storting decided to start negotiations with Sweden about Norway's consular missions abroad. Between 1902 and 1904 the last attempt was made in the Swedish-Norwegian committee to agree on contentious issues relating to foreign affairs, but this failed because Sweden insisted on the right to use the Norwegian consuls. This ultimately led to the Storting calling for an independent consular system in May 1905 . When the Swedish King Oskar II refused, the Norwegian government resigned. The Norwegian parliament then declared the personal union null and void on June 7 and provisionally reinstated the resigned government. A referendum on August 13, which was also called for by the Swedish Reichstag, confirmed the dissolution of the union with Sweden with 99.5 percent of the votes. The Norwegian side now offered Oskar that a Swedish prince could ascend the throne of an independent Norway, but Oskar refused in September 1905.

During the detachment process, tensions arose over the future demarcation of the border between Norway and Sweden, during which the armed forces of both countries were mobilized and alliance talks were held with several European countries. On September 23, however, the separation negotiations were peacefully concluded with the Treaty of Karlstad and a further referendum established the constitutional monarchy as the form of government. The Danish Prince Carl was proposed as King of Norway. However, he demanded a referendum for legitimation by the population. The result was positive, so that Prince Carl of Denmark was elected King Håkon VII of Norway on November 18th . The new Norwegian king came through his mother Louise as the grandson of King Charles XV. from the Swedish royal house Bernadotte. As the second son of the Danish King Friedrich VIII , he was a member of the Danish royal family.

In the 1906 election, women advocates supported the radicals, and a radical victory in 1907 meant that those women who already had regional suffrage were given that right at the national level. In 1913 all restrictions were lifted. Norway thus introduced women's suffrage in 1913 as the fourth country in the world after New Zealand , Australia and Finland .

First World War

Norway tried to maintain its neutrality in World War I , but was indirectly involved through the merchant fleet and acted on the side of the Entente . The Entente powers were able to charter Norwegian shipping tonnage for the transport of goods. Great Britain (which from 1914 blocked the North Sea against Germany) exerted strong economic pressure on Norway to prevent the export of goods such as copper ore and iron pyrite to Germany. That is why Norway was considered a neutral "ally". As a result, relations between Norway and Germany have come to a head since 1916. Norwegian ships have already been sunk in their own waters by German submarines. The Norwegian merchant fleet lost about half of its pre-war tonnage (800 ships). 1156 Norwegian seamen are missing in the unrestricted submarine war .

Interwar period

From 1918 to 1919, Norway experienced a brief economic boom immediately after the First World War. After that, however, the economic situation deteriorated. One of the main causes was problems with southern European trading partners due to prohibition in Norway . To strengthen the Norwegian currency, you needed high interest rates, which over time led to a drop in prices. That sparked a debt crisis. Real estate prices fell until the houses bought no longer secured the loans. After gold backing was secured in 1927, things picked up. The economic development was also relatively stable in the 1930s.

Norway took an active part in drafting the statutes of the League of Nations and joined it in 1920. Norway's claims to Spitzbergen ( Svalbard ) and Bear Island were recognized by the Spitzbergen Treaty of Paris on February 9, 1920. Norway had to guarantee the equality of all contractual partners in economic activity on the islands and their neutrality. During the interwar period there was considerable tension with Denmark, which almost resulted in an armed conflict. There was a dispute over ownership of the east coast of Greenland. After Denmark had declared its sovereignty over all of Greenland in 1921, this was initially recognized by Norway. However, due to various Danish measures, this recognition was later revoked, and in 1930 there was finally a temporary Norwegian occupation of parts of East Greenland. However, an arbitration award from the Permanent International Court of Justice in The Hague in 1933 confirmed the Danish claims, whereupon Norway waived its territorial claims and withdrew again from the east coast of Greenland.

Second World War

Norway also adopted a policy of neutrality during World War II . Nevertheless, on February 14, 1940, the German merchant ship Altmark , which was deployed to the war, flew from superior British forces in the Jøssingfjord in Norwegian territorial waters. The Altmark rejected Norwegian search requests that were to be carried out from ships of the Norwegian Navy. Two days later, the British destroyer HMS Cossack penetrated the fjord and forced the release of 300 British prisoners of war on board. On April 8, 1940, the British laid mines at the entrance to the Narvik ore port . On April 9, 1940, the country was attacked and occupied by Germany . Despite German superiority, it was possible to sink the German warship Blücher at the narrowest point of the Oslofjord with the cannons and torpedoes from the Oscarsborg fortress . Due to the resulting delay in the occupation of the capital, the royal family and the country's gold reserves were able to escape. The hostilities of the invasion lasted three weeks in southern Norway and two months in the north. When France surrendered, resistance was given up. The king and his government left the war capital Tromsø on June 7, 1940 and went to Great Britain as one . On June 10, the Norwegian army capitulated to the Wehrmacht . The Norwegian royal family, King Håkon VII and Crown Prince Olav (later King Olav V), gained a very strong role and a lot of sympathy in Norwegian society in exile. King Håkon VII's speeches broadcast from London, which could be heard on illegal radios, had a major impact on morale and mood in the occupied country . This support meant that the monarchical form of government was never fundamentally questioned after the war. At that time, as a sign of resistance, many Norwegians wore a paper clip on their lapel , until this was forbidden by the German occupying forces as a punishment.

Vidkun Quisling, Heinrich Himmler , Reichskommissar Josef Terboven, Colonel General Nikolaus von Falkenhorst , Norway 1941

The leader of the Norwegian fascist party Nasjonal Samling , Vidkun Quisling , used the chaos for a coup . In a radio address he announced the takeover of power by the Nasjonal Samling. However, he was largely ignored in the Reichskommissariat Norway formed by the German occupying forces, through whose Reichskommissar Josef Terboven , whom Hitler appointed to administer occupied Norway, whose favorite was the police chief Jonas Lie appointed by him . In 1942 he was pro forma tasked with forming a government, but could hardly make a name for himself as a powerless prime minister. Quisling was executed in Oslo in 1945 for high treason . In the Norwegian, English, German and Swedish languages, the name Quisling has since been a symbol of a traitor and collaborator .

There was a large resistance movement in Norway, both in the country, the so-called "home front" and in exile, the so-called "outer front". Within Norway, work began as early as the autumn of 1940 to build a military organization under the name of Milorg , which had its own secret service , supported sabotage and aimed at the liberation of Norway. This organization was also recognized by the Norwegian government- in- exile in London, which was subordinate to the High Command of the Norwegian Defense Forces operating there, and had around 55,000 members when it was liberated in 1945.

One of the largest acts of resistance was the blowing up of the Norsk Hydro factory in Rjukan , Telemark province , where heavy water was produced for the German atomic bomb program, on February 28, 1943 by saboteurs flown in from Great Britain; see Norwegian heavy water sabotage . When an attempt was made to transport the remaining heavy water with a train ferry across Tinnsjø to the next train station and on to Germany, the Norwegian home front under British leadership succeeded in sinking the ferry on February 19, 1944, with 14 Norwegians and 4 Germans drowned.

Since the end of 1940, a civilian arm of the resistance movement has been established under the name Sivorg . His tasks were primarily the preparation of forged passports and other documents, the transport of refugees, the registration of collaborators and informers, the collection of information from the population, especially from people in key positions, and the investigation of movements of the German troops in the country. The communication between the resistance in British exile and the resistance active within the country took place via encrypted radio messages. On the outer front, the navy, which was rebuilt in exile, was highly valued by the Allies. The Norwegian merchant fleet, which was available to the Allies with around 1,000 ships and a crew of 30,000 when the war broke out, also performed numerous military services. Around 3,600 Norwegian seafarers died.

Grini concentration camp, near Oslo (1941–43)

During the German occupation, around 44,000 Norwegians were in prison camps and special prisons, the most notorious of which was the Grini police prisoner camp near Oslo. Many resisters came to concentration camps , for example to Natzweiler-Struthof in Alsace . For example, the Shetland bus served as an important escape and supply route to the Shetland Islands for Norwegians who were able to flee with the help of fishing boats . The participating Norwegian naval officer Leif Larsen was honored - before any British - with the highest British honors during the war.

Of the approximately 2,200 Norwegian Jews who lived in the country in 1940, 767 were deported to the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp; only 26 of them survived. Among the victims were the student Ruth Maier and the 15-year-old student Kathe Lasnik, whose fate was dealt with by the philosopher and non-fiction author Espen Søbye . About 1,000 Jews were able to flee to Sweden, a smaller number to Great Britain.

POW camp at Elvkroken in Sørfold, 1945

But there were also Norwegians who collaborated with the German occupation forces. These included the members of Nasjonal Samling as well as Norwegian volunteers who fought on the German northeast front in the Finnish-Soviet Continuation War (1941–1944), believing they had to help the Finnish "brother people". Of these around 5,000 "frontline fighters", some were charged with treason and punished in Norwegian courts after the end of the war. 360 Norwegians served as guards for prisoners of war in the service of the SS . They were recruited from the Hirden , the paramilitary unit of Nasjonal Samling. There were four main prisoner-of-war camps in Norway in which not only Norwegians were held. The internees also included around 75,000 Soviet prisoners, of whom up to 15,000 were killed, and 1,600 Polish prisoners. The prisoners of war were used to work on Reichsstraße 50 from Halden via Oslo to Kirkenes (today's E 6 ), also known as the Blutweg , and on the extension of the Nordlandsbanen (Nordlandsbahn), planned from Grong to Kirkenes, with high losses.

On October 28, 1944, General Alfred Jodl , Chief of the Wehrmacht Command Staff , ordered the complete and ruthless deportation ( evacuation ) of the Norwegian population and the destruction of all accommodation east of the Lyngenfjord as part of the Northern Lights operation . The order was carried out in most places with the harshness and thoroughness ordered, and caused the greatest migration and destruction on Norwegian soil. The crime was one of the charges against Jodl in the Nuremberg trial of the major war criminals .

The occupation officially ended on May 8, 1945 with the surrender of German troops in Norway. Crown Prince Olav arrived in Oslo on May 13, 1945 and King Håkon VII on June 7, 1945.

post war period

The coming to terms with the German occupation burdened Norwegian politics for decades and remained controversial among its own population. The prosecution for treason involved around 46,000 people, of whom 37 were sentenced to death and around 17,000 to prison terms. Children with a Norwegian mother and a German occupier as a father were considered genetically threatening to the peacefulness of the Norwegian population. It is estimated that between 10,000 and 12,000 such children were born in Norway. Mothers and children were discriminated against socially. Their mothers - disparagingly called tyskertøser (roughly: "German slut ") - were partially imprisoned in internment camps from 1945 to 1946. The children as so-called " Tyskerbarna " ("German children ") were forbidden from attending school; they were put in homes, treated with neuroleptics , or lobotomed ; at best, they were given up for adoption in Sweden, for example Anni-Frid Lyngstad , singer with ABBA . The Norwegian Parliament ( Storting ) only officially apologized in 2003 for the behavior of the Norwegian government at the time.

After the end of the war, the Norwegian state confiscated the German capital involved in Norwegian companies and thus achieved a dominant position, especially in the field of raw material production such as iron ore mining, the steel and aluminum industries. The concept at the time consisted of state regulation of the economy. The 1940s and 1950s were marked by a shortage of goods and strict rationing . The leader of the Arbeiderpartiet (Social Democrats), Einar Gerhardsen , became the outstanding Norwegian politician in the first two decades after the war . The first Gerhardsen government took office on June 25, 1945. It was the only all-party government that existed in Norway. The Norwegian Communist Party was also represented with two ministers. With the elections for Storting in October 1945 , the Arbeiderpartiet became the strongest party and Gerhardsen again became Minister of State. He held this office from 1945–1951, 1955–1963 and with a short interruption 1963–1965. His reign was marked by the reconstruction and the subsequent boom, with the Swedish model serving as a model. The numerous refugees from poor Finnmark caused an enormous housing shortage. These problems could be solved by the government, and Gerhardsen is affectionately called "Landsfader" ( country father ).

The Norwegian Germany Brigade as part of the Allied occupation forces in Germany, which was stationed in the British occupation zone from 1947 to 1953 under the motto "To Germany for Peace" , contributed to the reconciliation between Germans and Norwegians after the Second World War. Norway was one of the twelve founding members of NATO in 1949 . It accepted the Marshall Plan , from which it received $ 256 million to rebuild its infrastructure and industries. In 1960 Norway became a member of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) and in 1994 a member of the European Economic Area . The political parties and the people of Norway are divided in their attitude towards the EU . In 1962 and 1967, the veto of French President Charles de Gaulle on the accession of Great Britain prevented Norway from taking an analogous step. After oil was found in the North Sea in 1967 ( North Sea oil ), Norway developed into one of the richest countries in Europe. Since then, strong forces in the labor movement and broad circles in the countryside have been advocating the preservation of national sovereignty and the protection of agriculture and fishing. Accession to the EEC or the EU was rejected in referendums on September 25, 1972 and November 28, 1994 . Norway has been involved in development aid for third world countries since the early 1960s . More than one percent of the gross national product is now used for development aid. At the political level, Norwegian diplomacy tried to mediate between the warring parties in armed conflicts in developing countries. Norway actively supported the international attempts to settle the Israeli-Palestinian conflict peacefully , which were later referred to as the Oslo Peace Process . An important milestone was the Oslo Agreement (also known as Oslo I) concluded on September 13, 1993 .

Since 1990

The Brundtland era ended in 1996; Brundtland was Prime Minister three times between 1981 and 1996. Politics in the years 1997 to 2013 was shaped by Prime Ministers Bondevik (October 1997 to March 2000 and October 2001 to October 2005 ) and Jens Stoltenberg ( 2000/2001 and 2005 to 2013 ).

On July 22, 2011 by shook Anders Behring Breivik perpetrated attack on the Oslo government district followed rampage on Utøya the country. In what is considered to be the worst disaster in Norwegian post-war history and aroused international sympathy, 77 people died; the perpetrator was sentenced a year later to a prison term of 21 years.

At the end of 2011, delivery bottlenecks led to the Norwegian butter crisis , which lasted until the turn of the year. The nationwide shortage of butter was favored by high import tariffs.

In 2015, in the course of the refugee crisis in Europe, over 4,000 refugees entered Norway via the Russian-Norwegian border. The Solberg government tightened its refugee policy . Norway's neighbor Sweden was known as the country with the most generous asylum policy until 2015 ; when the Löfven government revised this, more refugees tried to get into Norway.

See also


  • Ole Jørgen Benedictow: Svarte Dauen og senere plague epidemic i Norge . Oslo 2002.
  • Fritz Curschmann: Famine in the Middle Ages . Leipzig 1900.
  • Diplomatarium Norvegicum . Christiania 1847.
  • Diplomatarium Suecanum . Stockholm 1829.
  • Lars Ivar Hansen: Samenes historie fram til 1750 . Oslo 2007.
  • Knut Helle, Bergljot Solberg:  Norway. In: Reallexikon der Germanischen Altertumskunde (RGA). 2nd Edition. Volume 21, Walter de Gruyter, Berlin / New York 2002, ISBN 3-11-017272-0 , pp. 409-422.
  • Knut Helle: Under Kirke og Kongemakt 1130-1350 . In: Aschehougs Norges Historie Volume 3. Oslo 1995.
  • Per Hermes: Karmøy's history - something strange. Fra istid to 1050 . Karmøy 1997.
  • R. Higden: Polychronicon Ranulphi Higden Monachi Cestrensis . CA Babington, London 1865.
  • Jón Viðar Sigurðsson: Det norrøne Samfunnet. Vikingen, Kongen, Erkebiskopen and bonding. Oslo 2008.
  • Claus Krag: Wikingtid og rikssamling 800 - 1130 . In: Aschehougs Norges Historie Volume 2, Oslo 1995.
  • Claus Krag: Kristendommen og samlingen av Norge . In: Nordsjøen - Commerce, Religion and Politikk. Karmøyseminaret. 1994/95, p. 151.
  • Arnvid Lillehammer: Fra jeger til bonde - inntil 800 e. Kr . In: Aschehougs Norges Historie Volume 1. Oslo 1994.
  • Regesta Norvegica . Oslo 1968.
  • Sartorius-Lappenberg: Documented history of the origin of the German Hanseatic League . 2 volumes, Hamburg 1830.
  • Jan Schlürmann: Schleswig-Holstein and Norway. On the common features of the two outermost edges of the entire Danish state between 1772 and 1814. In: Der Kieler Frieden 1814 , ed. by Sonja Kinzler, Neumünster: 2013, pp. 100–106.
  • Espen Søbye: Kathe. Deported from Norway . Translated from the Norwegian by Uwe Englert, Association A, Berlin 2008.
  • WJ Simpson: A Treatise on Plague . Cambridge 1905.
  • Big stone country : Conflicts between Kristendom and Hedendom around 1000 . In: Nordsjøen - Commerce, Religion and Politikk. Karmøyseminaret . 1994/95, p. 109.
  • Gustav Storm: Islandske Annaler inntil 1578 . Christiania 1888.
  • Nils Petter Thuesen: Norges Historie i Årstall . 3. Edition. Oslo 2004.
  • Ole Steinar Tøtlandsmo: Vikingtidas' norske rikssamlingskamper . In: Rikssamlingen - Høvdingsmakt og kongemakt Karmøyseminaret . 1996, p. 26.
  • Wolfgang Froese: Viking-Germanic-Nordic kingdoms . Nikol Verlag, Hamburg 2008.
  • AS Kan: History of the Scandinavian Countries . German Science Publishing House, Berlin 1978.
  • Ralph Tuchtenhagen : Small history of Norway. Publishing house C. H. Beck oHG, Munich 2009.
  • Gerd von der Lippe: Landmarks in the History of Norwegian Worker Sport, pp. 131–142. In: Arnd Krüger , James Riordan (Ed.): The Story of Worker Sport. Champaign, Ill .: Human Kinetics 1996. ISBN 0-87322-874-X
  • Björn Wagner: Norway's Economy 1940-1945 . VDM Verlag Dr. Müller, 2008, ISBN 978-3-639-07366-9 .
  • Katharina Pohl: To Germany for Peace: Tyskland Brigades. In: A Hundred Years of German-Norwegian Encounters . Berliner Wissenschaftsverlag, Berlin 2005.
  • Peter Brandt (historian) , Werner Daum, Miriam Horn (ed.): The Scandinavian way into modernity. Contributions to the history of Norway and Sweden from the late Middle Ages to the 20th century . Berliner Wissenschaftsverlag, Berlin 2016, ISBN 978-3-8305-3638-3 .


Web links

Commons : History of Norway  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Hansen p. 52 ff.
  2. ^ Dolf Sternberger, Bernhard Vogel, Dieter Nohlen, Klaus Landfried (eds.): The election of parliaments and other state organs. Volume 1: Europe. De Gruyter, Berlin 1969, ISBN 978-3-11-001157-9 , p. 899.
  3. a b June Hannam, Mitzi Auchterlonie, Katherine Holden: International Encyclopedia of Women's Suffrage. ABC-Clio, Santa Barbara, Denver, Oxford 2000, ISBN 1-57607-064-6 , p. 168.
  4. ^ Mart Martin: The Almanac of Women and Minorities in World Politics. Westview Press Boulder, Colorado, 2000, p. 289.
  5. ^ Jad Adams: Women and the Vote. A world history. Oxford University Press, Oxford 2014, ISBN 978-0-19-870684-7 , page 437
  6. German Embassy Oslo: Timeline 1931-1940 ( Memento of the original from June 30, 2010 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. , accessed on June 9, 2010 @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.oslo.diplo.de
  7. The Reichskommissariat Norway was the civil German occupation authority in Norway during the Second World War from 1940 to 1945. It was headed by the Reichskommissar Josef Terboven. Compare Robert Bohn: Reichskommissariat Norway, National Socialist Reorganization and War Economy. 2000, ISBN 3-486-56488-9 .
  8. Arnim Lang: Operation Northern Lights - The Destruction of Northern Norway by German Troops ... , published in End of War in the North: From Hot to Cold War , editors: Robert Bohn and Jürgen Elvert, Franz Steiner Verlag 1995, ISBN 3-515-06728-0
  9. Referendum in Norway (September 25, 1972)
    IHS : The EU referendums in Austria, Finland, Sweden and Norway: course, results, motives and consequences (PDF; 67 kB)