Norwegian history | full independence at last | Norway

Norway’s full independence came in AD 1905, and was the culmination of a process that had lasted for several decades.
LA Dahlmann | talk NORWAY
King Haakon and Crown Prince Olav arriving in 1905. | Photo: Oslo Museum cc by-sa.
King Haakon and Crown Prince Olav arriving in 1905. | Photo: Oslo Museum cc by-sa.

Full independence at last | AD 1905

As its chosen tool to force through a change, the Norwegian parliament – Stortinget – passed a law early in the year AD 1905, declaring that Norway henceforth would be master of its own foreign affairs and establish its own diplomatic corps. This was in breach of the AD 1814 union agreement with Sweden, and King Oscar 2 refused to approve. As a result, the king no longer had the support of the Norwegian parliament, and could no longer appoint a legitimate Norwegian government and conduct his role as king of Norway.

On 7 June 1905, the Storting unilaterally declared independence. Negotiations with Sweden ensued, but the process had reached the point of no return. On 26 October 1905, King Oscar 2 formally, and reluctantly, gave up his claim to the Norwegian throne.

As a conciliatory gesture, Norway first offered the Norwegian throne to King Oscar’s younger son, Prince Carl (AD 1861-1951) – King Oscar refused. The Norwegians then looked towards Denmark and a second Prince Carl. It should be noted that the Danish Prince Carl was the grandson of the Swedish King Oscar 1, King Oscar 2’s father, so it was definitely a family affair, no matter what the outcome.

After 500 years of Danish and Swedish dominance, the Norwegians were free at last.

Next period: Norwegian history | prosperity, war and depression | Norway

Or see the full: History timeline | from stone age to modern era | Norway

BC = before Christ | AD = anno domini = after Christ
Main source: Store norske leksikon – snl.no

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