Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 8, Slice 2 - "Demijohn" to "Destructor"
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DENMAN, THOMAS, 1ST BARON (1779-1854), English judge, was born in London, the son of a well-known physician, on the 23rd of July 1779. He was educated at Eton and St John's College, Cambridge, where he graduated in 1800. Soon after leaving Cambridge he married; and in 1806 he was called to the bar at Lincoln's Inn, and at once entered upon practice. His success was rapid, and in a few years he attained a position at the bar second only to that of Brougham and Scarlett (Lord Abinger). He distinguished himself by his eloquent defence of the Luddites; but his most brilliant appearance was as one of the counsel for Queen Caroline. His speech before the Lords was very powerful, and some competent judges even considered it not inferior to Brougham's. It contained one or two daring passages, which made the king his bitter enemy, and retarded his legal promotion. At the general election of 1818 he was returned M.P. for Wareham, and at once took his seat with the Whig opposition. In the following year he was returned for Nottingham, for which place he continued to sit till his elevation to the bench in 1832. His liberal principles had caused his exclusion from office till in 1822 he was appointed common serjeant by the corporation of London. In 1830 he was made attorney-general under Lord Grey's administration. Two years later he was made lord chief justice of the King's Bench, and in 1834 he was raised to the peerage. As a judge he is most celebrated for his decision in the important privilege case of Stockdale v. Hansard (9 Ad. & El. I.; 11 Ad. & El. 253), but he was never ranked as a profound lawyer. In 1850 he resigned his chief justiceship and retired into private life. He died on the 26th of September 1854, his title continuing in the direct line.

The HON. GEORGE DENMAN (1819-1896), his fourth son, was also a distinguished lawyer, and a judge of the Queen's Bench from 1872 till his death in 1896.

See Memoir of Thomas, first Lord Denman, by Sir Joseph Arnould (2 vols., 1873); E. Manson, Builders of our Law (1904).

DENMARK (Danmark), a small kingdom of Europe, occupying part of a peninsula and a group of islands dividing the Baltic and North Seas, in the middle latitudes of the eastern coast. The kingdom lies between 54 33' and 57 45' N. and between 8 4' 54" and 12 47' 25" E., exclusive of the island of Bornholm, which, as will be seen, is not to be included in the Danish archipelago. The peninsula is divided between Denmark and Germany (Schleswig-Holstein). The Danish portion is the northern and the greater, and is called Jutland (Dan. Jylland). Its northern part is actually insular, divided from the mainland by the Limfjord or Liimfjord, which communicates with the North Sea to the west and the Cattegat to the east, but this strait, though broad and possessing lacustrine characteristics to the west, has only very narrow entrances. The connexion with the North Sea dates from 1825. The Skagerrack bounds Jutland to the north and north-west. The Cattegat is divided from the Baltic by the Danish islands, between the east coast of the Cimbric peninsula in the neighbourhood of the German frontier and south-western Sweden.

There is little variety in the surface of Denmark. It is uniformly low, the highest elevation in the whole country, the Himmelbjerg near Aarhus in eastern Jutland, being little more than 500 ft. above the sea. Denmark, however, is nowhere low in the sense in which Holland is; the country is pleasantly diversified, and rises a little at the coast even though it remains flat inland. The landscape of the islands and the south-eastern part of Jutland is rich in beech-woods, corn fields and meadows, and even the minute islets are green and fertile. In the western and northern districts of Jutland this condition gives place to a wide expanse of moorland, covered with heather, and ending towards the sea in low whitish-grey cliffs. There is a certain charm even about these monotonous tracts, and it cannot be said that Denmark is wanting in natural beauty of a quiet order. Lakes, though small, are numerous; the largest are the Arres and the Esroms in Zealand, and the chain of lakes in the Himmelbjerg region, which are drained by the largest river in Denmark, the Gudenaa, which, however, has a course not exceeding 80 m. Many of the meres, overhung with thick beech-woods, are extremely beautiful. The coasts are generally low and sandy; the whole western shore of Jutland is a succession of sand ridges and shallow lagoons, very dangerous to shipping. In many places the sea has encroached; even in the 19th century entire villages were destroyed, but during the last twenty years of the century systematic efforts were made to secure the coast by groynes and embankments. A belt of sand dunes, from 500 yds. to 7 m. wide, stretches along the whole of this coast for about 200 m. Skagen, or the Skaw, a long, low, sandy point, stretches far into the northern sea, dividing the Skagerrack from the Cattegat. On the western side the coast is bolder and less inhospitable; there are several excellent havens, especially on the islands. The coast is nowhere, however, very high, except at one or two points in Jutland, and at the eastern extremity of Men, where limestone cliffs occur.

Continental Denmark is confined wholly to Jutland, the geographical description of which is given under that heading. Out of the total area of the kingdom, 14,829 sq. m., Jutland, including the small islands adjacent to it, covers 9753 sq. m., and the insular part of the kingdom (including Bornholm), 5076 sq. m. The islands may be divided into two groups, consisting of the two principal islands Fnen and Zealand, and the lesser islands attendant on each. Fnen (Dan. Fyen), in form roughly an oval with an axis from S.E. to N.W. of 53 m., is separated from Jutland by a channel not half a mile wide in the north, but averaging 10 m. between the island and the Schleswig coast, and known as the Little Belt. Fnen, geologically a part of southern Jutland, has similar characteristics, a smiling landscape of fertile meadows, the typical beech-forests clothing the low hills and the presence of numerous erratic blocks, are the superficial signs of likeness. Several islands, none of great extent, lie off the west coast of Fnen in the Little Belt; off the south, however, an archipelago is enclosed by the long narrow islands of Aer (16 m. in length) and Langeland (32 m.), including in a triangular area of shallow sea the islands of Taasinge, Avernak, Drei, Tur and others. These are generally fertile and well cultivated. Aerskjbing and Rudkjbing, on Aer and Langeland respectively, are considerable ports. On Langeland is the great castle of Tranekjaer, whose record dates from the 13th century. The chief towns of Fnen itself are all coastal. Odense is the principal town, lying close to a great inlet behind the peninsula of Hindsholm on the north-east, known as Odense Fjord. Nyborg on the east is the port for the steam-ferry to Korsr in Zealand; Svendborg picturesquely overlooks the southern archipelago; Faaborg on the south-west lies on a fjord of the same name; Assens, on the west, a port for the crossing of the Little Belt into Schleswig, still shows traces of the fortifications which were stormed by John of Ranzau in 1535; Middelfart is a seaside resort near the narrowest reach of the Little Belt; Bogense is a small port on the north coast. All these towns are served by railways radiating from Odense. The strait crossed by the Nyborg-Korsr ferry is the Great Belt which divides the Fnen from the Zealand group, and is continued south by the Langelands Belt, which washes the straight eastern shore of that island, and north by the Samso Belt, named from an island 15 m. in length, with several large villages, which lies somewhat apart from the main archipelago.

Zealand, or Sealand (Dan. Sjaelland), measuring 82 m. N. to S. by 68 E. to W. (extremes), with its fantastic coast-line indented by fjords and projecting into long spits or promontories, may be considered as the nucleus of the kingdom, inasmuch as it contains the capital, Copenhagen, and such important towns as Roskilde, Slagelse, Korsr, Naestved and Elsinore (Helsingr). Its topography is described in detail under ZEALAND. Its attendant islands lie mainly to the south and are parts of itself, only separated by geologically recent troughs. The eastern coast of Men is rocky and bold. It is recorded that this island formed three separate isles in 1100, and the village of Borre, now 2 m. inland, was the object of an attack by a fleet from Lbeck in 1510. On Falster is the port of Nykjbing, and from Gjedser, the extreme southern point of Denmark, communication is maintained with Warnemnde in Germany (29 m.). From Nykjbing a bridge nearly one-third of a mile long crosses to Laaland, at the west of which is the port of Nakskov; the other towns are the county town of Maribo with its fine church of the 14th century, Saxkjbing and Rdby. The island of Bornholm lies 86 m. E. of the nearest point of the archipelago, and as it belongs geologically to Sweden (from which it is distant only 22 m.) must be considered to be physically an appendage rather than an internal part of the kingdom of Denmark.

Geology.—The surface in Denmark is almost everywhere formed by the so-called Boulder Clay and what the Danish geologists call the Boulder Sand. The former, as is well known, owes its origin to the action of ice on the mountains of Norway in the Glacial period. It is unstratified; but by the action of water on it, stratified deposits have been formed, some of clay, containing remains of arctic animals, some, and very extensive ones, of sand and gravel. This boulder sand forms almost everywhere the highest hills, and besides, in the central part of Jutland, a wide expanse of heath and moorland apparently level, but really sloping gently towards the west. The deposits of the boulder formation rest generally on limestone of the Cretaceous period, which in many places comes near the surface and forms cliffs on the sea-coast. Much of the Danish chalk, including the well-known limestone of Faxe, belongs to the highest or "Danian" subdivision of the Cretaceous period. In the south-western parts a succession of strata, described as the Brown Coal or Lignite formations, intervenes between the chalk and the boulder clay; its name is derived from the deposits of lignite which occur in it. It is only on the island of Bornholm that older formations come to light. This island agrees in geological structure with the southern part of Sweden, and forms, in fact, the southernmost portion of the Scandinavian system. There the boulder clay lies immediately on the primitive rock, except in the south-western corner of the island, where a series of strata appear belonging to the Cambrian, Silurian, Jurassic and Cretaceous formations, the true Coal formation, &c., being absent. Some parts of Denmark are supposed to have been finally raised out of the sea towards the close of the Cretaceous period; but as a whole the country did not appear above the water till about the close of the Glacial period. The upheaval of the country, a movement common to a large part of the Scandinavian peninsula, still continues, though slowly, north-east of a line drawn in a south-easterly direction from Nissumfjord on the west coast of Jutland, across the island of Fyen, a little south of the town of Nyborg. Ancient sea-beaches, marked by accumulations of seaweed, rolled stones, &c., have been noticed as much as 20 ft. above the present level. But the upheaval does not seem to affect all parts equally. Even in historic times it has vastly changed the aspect and configuration of the country.

Climate, Flora, Fauna.—The climate of Denmark does not differ materially from that of Great Britain in the same latitude; but whilst the summer is a little warmer, the winter is colder, so that most of the evergreens which adorn an English garden in the winter cannot be grown in the open in Denmark. During thirty years the annual mean temperature varied from 43.88 F. to 46.22 in different years and different localities, the mean average for the whole country being 45.14. The islands have, upon the whole, a somewhat warmer climate than Jutland. The mean temperatures of the four coldest months, December to March, are 33.26, 31.64, 31.82, and 33.98 respectively, or for the whole winter 32.7; that of the summer, June to August, 59.2, but considerable irregularities occur. Frost occurs on an average on twenty days in each of the four winter months, but only on two days in either October or May. A fringe of ice generally lines the greater part of the Danish coasts on the eastern side for some time during the winter, and both the Sound and the Great Belt are at times impassable on account of ice. In some winters the latter is sufficiently firm and level to admit of sledges passing between Copenhagen and Malm. The annual rainfall varies between 21.58 in. and 27.87 in. in different years and different localities. It is highest on the west coast of Jutland; while the small island of Anholt in the Cattegat has an annual rainfall of only 15.78 in. More than half the rainfall occurs from July to November, the wettest month being September, with an average of 2.95 in.; the driest month is April, with an average of 1.14 in. Thunderstorms are frequent in the summer. South-westerly winds prevail from January to March, and from September to the end of the year. In April the east wind, which is particularly searching, is predominant, while westerly winds prevail from May to August. In the district of Aalborg, in the north of Jutland, a cold and dry N.W. wind called skai prevails in May and June, and is exceedingly destructive to vegetation; while along the west coast of the peninsula similar effects are produced by a salt mist, which carries its influence from 15 to 30 m. inland.

The flora of Denmark presents greater variety than might be anticipated in a country of such simple physical structure. The ordinary forms of the north of Europe grow freely in the mild air and protected soil of the islands and the eastern coast; while on the heaths and along the sandhills on the Atlantic side there flourish a number of distinctive species. The Danish forest is almost exclusively made up of beech, a tree which thrives better in Denmark than in any other country of Europe. The oak and ash are now rare, though in ancient times both were abundant in the Danish islands. The elm is also scarce. The almost universal predominance of the beech is by no means of ancient origin, for in the first half of the 17th century the oak was still the characteristic Danish tree. No conifer grows in Denmark except under careful cultivation, which, however, is largely practised in Jutland (q.v.). But again, abundant traces of ancient extensive forests of fir and pine are found in the numerous peat bogs which supply a large proportion of the fuel locally used. In Bornholm, it should be mentioned, the flora is more like that of Sweden; not the beech, but the pine, birch and ash are the most abundant trees.

The wild animals and birds of Denmark are those of the rest of central Europe. The larger quadrupeds are all extinct; even the red deer, formerly so abundant that in a single hunt in Jutland in 1593 no less than 1600 head of deer were killed, is now only to be met with in preserves. In the prehistoric "kitchen-middens" (kjkkenmdding) and elsewhere, however, vestiges are found which prove that the urochs, the wild boar, the beaver, the bear and the wolf all existed subsequently to the arrival of man. The usual domestic animals are abundantly found in Denmark, with the exception of the goat, which is uncommon. The sea fisheries are of importance. Oysters are found in some places, but have disappeared from many localities, where their abundance in ancient times is proved by their shell moulds on the coast. The Gudenaa is the only salmon river in Denmark.

Population.—The population of Denmark in 1901 was 2,449,540. It was 929,001 in 1801, showing an increase during the century in the proportion of 1 to 2.63. In 1901 the average density of the population of Denmark was 165.2 to the square mile, but varied much in the different parts. Jutland showed an average of only 109 inhabitants per square mile, whilst on the islands, which had a total population of 1,385,537, the average stood at 272.95, owing, on the one hand, to the fact that large tracts in the interior of Jutland are almost uninhabited, and on the other to the fact that the capital of the country, with its proportionately large population, is situated on the island of Zealand. The percentages of urban and rural population are respectively about 38 and 62. A notable movement of the population to the towns began about the middle of the 19th century, and increased until very near its end. It was stronger on the islands, where the rural population increased by 5.3% only in eleven years, whereas in Jutland the increase of the rural population between 1890 and 1901 amounted to 12.0%. Here, however, peculiar circumstances contributed to the increase, as successful efforts have been made to render the land fruitful by artificial means. The Danes are a yellow-haired and blue-eyed Teutonic race of middle stature, bearing traces of their kinship with the northern Scandinavian peoples. Their habits of life resemble those of the North Germans even more than those of the Swedes. The independent tenure of the land by a vast number of small farmers, who are their own masters, gives an air of carelessness, almost of truculence, to the well-to-do Danish peasants. They are generally slow of speech and manner, and somewhat irresolute, but take an eager interest in current politics, and are generally fairly educated men of extreme democratic principles. The result of a fairly equal distribution of wealth is a marked tendency towards equality in social intercourse. The townspeople show a bias in favour of French habits and fashions. The separation from the duchies of Schleswig and Holstein, which were more than half German, intensified the national character; the Danes are intensely patriotic; and there is no portion of the Danish dominions except perhaps in the West Indian islands, where a Scandinavian language is not spoken. The preponderance of the female population over the male is approximately as 1052 to 1000. The male sex remains in excess until about the twentieth year, from which age the female sex preponderates in increasing ratio with advancing age. The percentage of illegitimacy is high as a whole, although in some of the rural districts it is very low. But in Copenhagen 20% of the births are illegitimate. Between the middle and the end of the 19th century the rate of mortality decreased most markedly for all ages. During the last decade of the century it ranged between 19.5 per thousand in 1891 and 15.1 in 1898 (17.4 in 1900). Emigration for some time in the 19th century at different periods, both in its early part and towards its close, seriously affected the population of Denmark. But in the last decade it greatly diminished. Thus in 1892 the number of emigrants to Transatlantic places rose to 10,422 but in 1900 it was only 3570. The great bulk of them go to the United States; next in favour is Canada.

Communications.—The roads of Denmark form an extensive and well-maintained system. The railway system is also fairly complete, the state owning about three-fifths of the total mileage, which amounts to some 2000. Two lines enter Denmark from Schleswig across the frontier. The main Danish lines are as follows. From the frontier a line runs east by Fredericia, across the island of Fnen by Odense and Nyborg, to Korsr on Zealand, and thence by Roskilde to Copenhagen. The straits between Fredericia and Middelfart and between Nyborg and Korsr are crossed by powerful steam-ferries which are generally capable of conveying a limited number of railway wagons. This system is also in use on the line which runs south from Roskilde to the island of Falster, from the southernmost point of which, Gjedser, ferry-steamers taking railway cars serve Warnemnde in Germany. The main lines in Jutland run (a) along the eastern side north from Fredericia by Horsens, Aarhus, Randers, Aalborg and Hjrring, to Frederikshavn, and (b) along the western side from Esbjerg by Skjerne and Vemb, and thence across the peninsula by Viborg to Langaa on the eastern line. The lines are generally of standard gauge (4 ft. 8 in.), but there is also a considerable mileage of light narrow-gauge railways. Besides the numerous steam-ferries which connect island and island, and Jutland with the islands, and the Gjedser-Warnemnde route, a favourite passenger line from Germany is that between Kiel and Korsr, while most of the German Baltic ports have direct connexion with Copenhagen. With Sweden communications are established by ferries across the Sound between Copenhagen and Malm and Landskrona, and between Elsinore (Helsingr) and Helsingborg. The postal department maintains a telegraph and telephone service.

Industries.—The main source of wealth in Denmark is agriculture, which employs about two-fifths of the entire population. Most of the land is freehold and cultivated by the owner himself, and comparatively little land is let on lease except very large holdings and glebe farms. The independent small farmer (bnder) maintains a hereditary attachment to his ancestral holding. There is also a class of cottar freeholders (junster). Fully 74% of the total area of the country is agricultural land. Of this only about one-twelfth is meadow land. The land under grain crops is not far short of one-half the remainder, the principal crops being oats, followed by barley and rye in about equal quantities, with wheat about one-sixth that of barley and hardly one-tenth that of oats. Beet is extensively grown. During the last forty years of the 19th century dairy-farming was greatly developed in Denmark, and brought to a high degree of perfection by the application of scientific methods and the best machinery, as well as by the establishment of joint dairies. The Danish government has assisted this development by granting money for experiments and by a rigorous system of inspection for the prevention of adulteration. The co-operative system plays an important part in the industries of butter-making, poultry-farming and the rearing of swine.

Rabbits, which are not found wild in Denmark, are bred for export. Woods cover fully 7% of the area, and their preservation is considered of so much importance that private owners are under strict control as regards cutting of timber. The woods consist mostly of beech, which is principally used for fuel, but pines were extensively planted during the 19th century. Allusion has been made already to the efforts to plant the extensive heaths in Jutland (q.v.) with pine-trees.

Agriculture.—Rates and taxes on land are mostly levied according to a uniform system of assessment, the unit of which is called a Tonde Hartkorn. The Td. Htk., as it is usually abbreviated, has further subdivision, and is intended to correspond to the same value of land throughout the country. The Danish measure for land is a Tonde Land (Td. L.), which is equal to 1.363 statute acres. Of the best ploughing land a little over 6 Td. L., or about 8 acres, go to a Td. Htk., but of unprofitable land a Td. Htk. may represent 300 acres or more. On the islands and in the more fertile part of Jutland the average is about 10 Td. L., or 13 acres. Woodland, tithes, &c., are also assessed to Td. Htk. for fiscal purposes. In the island of Bornholm, the assessment is somewhat different, though the general state of agricultural holdings is the same as in other parts. The selling value of land has shown a decrease in modern times on account of the agricultural depression. A homestead with land assessed less than 1 Td. Htk. is legally called a Huus or Sted, i.e. cottage, whilst a farm assessed at 1 Td. Htk. or more is called Gaard, i.e. farm. Farms of between 1 and 12 Td. Htk. are called Bondergaarde, or peasant farms, and are subject to the restriction that such a holding cannot lawfully be joined to or entirely merged into another. They may be subdivided, and portions may be added to another holding, but the homestead, with a certain amount of land, must be preserved as a separate holding for ever. The seats of the nobility and landed gentry are called Herregaarde. The peasants hold about 73% of all the land according to its value. As regards their size about 30% are assessed from 1 to 4 Td. Htk.; about 33% from 4 to 8 Td. Htk.; the remainder at about 8 Td. Htk. An annual sum is voted by parliament out of which loans are granted to cottagers who desire to purchase small freehold plots.

The fishery along the coasts of Denmark is of some importance both on account of the supply of food obtained thereby for the population of the country, and on account of the export; but the good fishing grounds, not far from the Danish coast, particularly in the North Sea, are mostly worked by the fishing vessels of other nations, which are so numerous that the Danish government is obliged to keep gun-boats stationed there in order to prevent encroachments on territorial waters.

Other Industries.—The mineral products of Denmark are unimportant. It is one of the poorest countries of Europe in this particular. It is rich, however, in clays, while in the island of Bornholm there are quarries of freestone and marble. The factories of Denmark supply mainly local needs. The largest are those engaged in the construction of engines and iron ships. The manufacture of woollens and cotton, the domestic manufacture of linen in Zealand, sugar refineries, paper mills, breweries, and distilleries may also be mentioned. The most notable manufacture is that of porcelain. The nucleus of this industry was a factory started in 1772, by F. H. Mller, for the making of china out of Bornholm clay. In 1779 it passed into the hands of the state, and has remained there ever since, though there are also private factories. Originally the Copenhagen potters imitated the Dresden china made at Meissen, but they later produced graceful original designs. The creations of Thorvaldsen have been largely repeated and imitated in this ware. Trade-unionism flourishes in Denmark, and strikes are of frequent occurrence.

Commerce.—Formerly the commercial legislation of Denmark was to such a degree restrictive that imported manufactures had to be delivered to the customs, where they were sold by public auction, the proceeds of which the importer received from the custom-houses after a deduction was made for the duty. To this restriction, as regards foreign intercourse, was added a no less injurious system of inland duties impeding the commerce of the different provinces with each other. The want of roads also, and many other disadvantages, tended to keep down the development of both commerce and industry. During the 19th century, however, several commercial treaties were concluded between Denmark and the other powers of Europe, which made the Danish tariff more regular and liberal.

The vexed question, of many centuries' standing, concerning the claim of Denmark to levy dues on vessels passing through the Sound (q.v.), was settled by the abolition of the dues in 1857. The commerce of Denmark is mainly based on home production and home consumption, but a certain quantity of goods is imported with a view to re-exportation, for which the free port and bonded warehouses at Copenhagen give facilities. In modern times the value of Danish commerce greatly increased, being doubled in the last twenty years of the 19th century, and exceeding a total of fifty millions sterling. The value of export is exceeded as a whole by that of import in the proportion, roughly, of 1 to 1.35. By far the most important articles of export may be classified as articles of food of animal origin, a group which covers the vast export trade in the dairy produce, especially butter, for which Denmark is famous. The value of the butter for export reaches nearly 40% of the total value of Danish exports. A small proportion of the whole is imported chiefly from Russia (also Siberia) and Sweden and re-exported as of foreign origin. The production of margarine is large, but not much is exported, margarine being largely consumed in Denmark instead of butter, which is exported. Next to butter the most important article of Danish export is bacon, and huge quantities of eggs are also exported. Exports of less value, but worthy of special notice, are vegetables and wool, bones and tallow, also dairy machinery, and finally cement, the production of which is a growing industry. The classes of articles of food of animal origin, and living animals, are the only ones of which the exportation exceeds the importation; with regard to all other goods, the reverse is the case. In the second of these classes the most important export is home-bred horned cattle. The trade in live sheep and swine, which was formerly important, has mostly been converted into a dead-meat trade. A proportionally large importation of timber is caused by the scarcity of native timber suitable for building purposes, the plantations of firs and pines being insufficient to produce the quantity required, and the quality of the wood being inferior beyond the age of about forty years. The large importation of coal, minerals and metals, and goods made from them is likewise caused by the natural poverty of the country in these respects.

Denmark carries on its principal import trade with Germany, Great Britain and the United States of America, in this order, the proportions being about 30, 20 and 16% respectively of the total. Its principal export trade is with Great Britain, Germany and Sweden, the percentage of the whole being 60, 18 and 10. With Russia, Norway and France (in this order) general trade is less important, but still large. A considerable proportion of Denmark's large commercial fleet is engaged in the carrying trade between foreign, especially British, ports.

Under a law of the 4th of May 1907 it was enacted that the metric system of weights and measures should come into official use in three years from that date, and into general use in five years.

Money and Banking.—The unit of the Danish monetary system, as of the Swedish and Norwegian, is the krone (crown), equal to 1s. 1{1/3}d., which is divided into 100 re; consequently 7 re are equal to one penny. Since 1873 gold has been the standard, and gold pieces of 20 and 10 kroner are coined, but not often met with, as the public prefers bank-notes. The principal bank is the National Bank at Copenhagen, which is the only one authorized to issue notes. These are of the value of 10, 50, 100 and 500 kr. Next in importance are the Danske Landmands Bank, the Handels Bank and the Private Bank, all at Copenhagen. The provincial banks are very numerous; many of them are at the same time savings banks. Their rate of interest, with few exceptions, is 3 to 4%. There exist, besides, in Denmark several mutual loan associations (Kreditforeninger), whose business is the granting of loans on mortgage. Registration of mortgages is compulsory in Denmark, and the system is extremely simple, a fact which has been of the greatest importance for the improvement of the country. There are comparatively large institutions for insurance of all kinds in Denmark. The largest office for life insurance is a state institution. By law of the 9th of April 1891 a system of old-age pensions was established for the benefit of persons over sixty years of age.

Government.—Denmark is a limited monarchy, according to the law of 1849, revised in 1866. The king shares his power with the parliament (Rigsdag), which consists of two chambers, the Landsthing and the Folkething, but the constitution contains no indication of any difference in their attributes. The Landsthing, or upper house, however, is evidently intended to form the conservative element in the constitutional machinery. While the 114 members of the Folkething (House of Commons) are elected for three years in the usual way by universal suffrage, 12 out of the 66 members of the Landsthing are life members nominated by the crown. The remaining 54 members of the Landsthing are returned for eight years according to a method of proportionate representation by a body of deputy electors. Of these deputies one-half are elected in the same way as members of the Folkething, without any property qualification for the voters; the other half of the deputy electors are chosen in the towns by those who during the last preceding year were assessed on a certain minimum of income, or paid at least a certain amount in rates and taxes. In the rural districts the deputy electors returned by election are supplemented by an equal number of those who have paid the highest amounts in taxes and county rates together. In this manner a representation is secured for fairly large minorities, and what is considered a fair share of influence on public affairs given to those who contribute the most to the needs of the state. The franchise is held by every male who has reached his thirtieth year, subject to independence of public charity and certain other circumstances. A candidate for either house of the Rigsdag must have passed the age of twenty-five. Members are paid ten kroner each day of the session and are allowed travelling expenses. The houses meet each year on the first Monday in October. The constitutional theory of the Folkething is that of one member for every 16,000 inhabitants. The Faere islands, which form an integral part of the kingdom of Denmark in the wider sense, are represented in the Danish parliament, but not the other dependencies of the Danish crown, namely Iceland, Greenland and the West Indian islands of St Thomas, St John and St Croix. The budget is considered by the Folkething at the beginning of each session. The revenue and expenditure average annually about 4,700,000. The principal items of revenue are customs and excise, land and house tax, stamps, railways, legal fees, the state lottery and death duties. A considerable reserve fund is maintained to meet emergencies. The public debt is about 13,500,000 and is divided into an internal debt, bearing interest generally at 3%, and a foreign debt (the larger), with interest generally at 3%. The revenue and expenditure of the Faeres are included in the budget for Denmark proper, but Iceland and the West Indies have their separate budgets. The Danish treasury receives nothing from these possessions; on the contrary, Iceland receives an annual grant, and the West Indian islands have been heavily subsidized by the Danish finances to assist the sugar industry. The administration of Greenland (q.v.) entails an annual loss which is posted on the budget of the ministry of finances. The state council (Statsraad) includes the presidency of the council and ministries of war, and marine, foreign affairs, the interior, justice, finance, public institution and ecclesiastical, agriculture and public works.

Local Government.—For administrative purposes the country is divided into eighteen counties (Amter, singular Amt), as follows. (1) Covering the islands of Zealand and lesser adjacent islands, Copenhagen, Frederiksborg, Holbaek, Sor, Praest. (2) Covering the islands of Laaland and Falster, Maribo. (3) Covering Fnen, Langeland and adjacent islets, Svendborg, Odense. (4) On the mainland, Hjrring, Aalborg, Thisted, Ringkjbing, Viborg, Randers, Aarhus, Vejle, Ribe. (5) Bornholm. The principal civil officer in each of these is the Amtmand. Local affairs are managed by the Amstraad and Sogneraad, corresponding to the English county council and parish council. These institutions date from 1841, but they have undergone several modifications since. The members of these councils are elected on a system similar to that applied to the elections for the Landsthing. The same is the case with the provincial town councils. That of Copenhagen is elected by those who are rated on an income of at least 400 kroner (22). The burgomasters are appointed by the crown, except at Copenhagen, where they are elected by the town council, subject to royal approbation. The financial position of the municipalities in Denmark is generally good. The ordinary budget of Copenhagen amounts to about 1,100,000 a year.

Justice.—For the administration of justice Denmark is divided into herreds or hundreds; as, however, they are mostly of small extent, several are generally served by one judge (herredsfoged); the townships are likewise separate jurisdictions, each with a byfoged. There are 126 such local judges, each of whom deals with all kinds of cases arising in his district, and is also at the head of the police. There are two intermediary Courts of Appeal (Overret), one in Copenhagen, another in Viborg; the Supreme Court of Appeal (Hjesteret) sits at Copenhagen. In the capital the different functions are more divided. There is also a Court of Commerce and Navigation, on which leading members of the trading community serve as assessors. In the country, Land Commissions similarly constituted deal with many questions affecting agricultural holdings. A peculiarity of the Danish system is that, with few exceptions, no civil cause can be brought before a court until an attempt has been made at effecting an amicable settlement. This is mostly done by so-called Committees of Conciliation, but in some cases by the court itself before commencing formal judicial proceedings. In this manner three-fifths of all the causes are settled, and many which remain unsettled are abandoned by the plaintiffs. Sanitary matters are under the control of a Board of Health. The whole country is divided into districts, in each of which a medical man is appointed with a salary, who is under the obligation to attend to poor sick and assist the authorities in medical matters, inquests, &c. The relief of the poor is well organized, mostly on the system of out-door relief. Many workhouses have been established for indigent persons capable of work. There are also many almshouses and similar institutions.

Army and Navy.—The active army consists of a life guard battalion and 10 infantry regiments of 3 battalions each, infantry, 5 cavalry regiments of 3 squadrons each, 12 field batteries (now re-armed with a Krupp Q.F. equipment), 3 battalions of fortress artillery and 6 companies of engineers, with in addition various local troops and details. The peace strength of permanent troops, without the annual contingent of recruits, is about 13,500 officers and men, the annual contingent of men trained two or three years with the colours about 22,500, and the annual contingent of special reservists (men trained for brief periods) about 17,000. Thus the number of men maintained under arms (without calling up the reserves) is as high as 75,000 during certain periods of the year and averages nearly 60,000. Reservists who have definitively left the colours are recalled for short refresher trainings, the number of men so trained in 1907 being about 80,000. The field army on a war footing, without depot troops, garrison troops and reservists, would be about 50,000 strong, but by constituting new cadres at the outbreak of war and calling up the reserves it could be more than doubled, and as a matter of fact nearly 120,000 men were with the colours in the manoeuvre season in 1907. The term of service is eight years in the active army and its reserves and eight years in the second line. The armament of the infantry is the Krag-jorgensen of .314 in. calibre, model 1889, that of the field artillery a 7.5 cm. Krupp Q.F. equipment, model 1902. The navy consists of 6 small battleships, 3 coast defence armour-clads, 5 protected cruisers, 5 gun-boats, and 24 torpedo craft.

Religion.—The national or state church of Denmark is officially styled "Evangelically Reformed," but is popularly described as Lutheran. The king must belong to it. There is complete religious toleration, but though most of the important Christian communities are represented their numbers are very small. The Mormon apostles for a considerable time made a special raid upon the Danish peasantry and a few hundreds profess this faith. There are seven dioceses, Fnen, Laaland and Falster, Aarhus, Aalborg, Viborg and Ribe, while the primate is the bishop of Zealand, and resides at Copenhagen, but his cathedral is at Roskilde. The bishops have no political function by reason of their office, although they may, and often do, take a prominent part in politics. The greater part of the pastorates comprise more than one parish. The benefices are almost without exception provided with good residences and glebes, and the tithes, &c., generally afford a comfortable income. The bishops have fixed salaries in lieu of tithes appropriated by the state.

Education and Arts.—The educational system of Denmark is maintained at a high standard. The instruction in primary schools is gratuitous. Every child is bound to attend the parish school at least from the seventh to the thirteenth year, unless the parents can prove that it receives suitable instruction in other ways. The schools are under the immediate control of school boards appointed by the parish councils, but of which the incumbent of the parish is ex-officio member; superior control is exercised by the Amtmand, the rural dean, and the bishop, under the Minister for church and education. Secondary public schools are provided in towns, in which moderate school fees are paid. There are also public grammar-schools. Nearly all schools are day-schools. There are only two public schools, which, though on a much smaller scale, resemble the great English schools, namely, those of Sor and Herlufsholm, both founded by private munificence. Private schools are generally under a varying measure of public control. The university is at Copenhagen (q.v.). Amongst numerous other institutions for the furtherance of science and training of various kinds may be mentioned the large polytechnic schools; the high school for agriculture and veterinary art; the royal library; the royal society of sciences; the museum of northern antiquities; the society of northern antiquaries, &c. The art museums of Denmark are not considerable, except the museum of Thorvaldsen, at Copenhagen, but much is done to provide first-rate training in the fine arts and their application to industry through the Royal Academy of Arts, and its schools. Finally, it may be mentioned that a sum proportionately large is available from public funds and regular parliamentary grants for furthering science and arts by temporary subventions to students, authors, artists and others of insufficient means, in order to enable them to carry out particular works, to profit by foreign travel, &c. The principal scientific societies and institutions are detailed under Copenhagen. During the earlier part of the 19th century not a few men could be mentioned who enjoyed an exceptional reputation in various departments of science, and Danish scientists continue to contribute their full share to the advancement of knowledge. The society of sciences, that of northern antiquaries, the natural history and the botanical societies, &c., publish their transactions and proceedings, but the Naturhistorisk Tidsskrift, of which 14 volumes with 259 plates were published (1861-1884), and which was in the foremost rank in its department, ceased with the death in 1884 of the editor, the distinguished zoologist, I. C. Schidte. Another extremely valuable publication of wide general interest, the Meddelelser om Grnland, is published by the commission for the exploration of Greenland. What may be called the modern "art" current, with its virtues and vices, is as strong in Denmark as in England. Danish sculpture will be always famous, if only through the name of Thorvaldsen. In architecture the prevailing fashion is a return to the style of the first half of the 17th century, called the Christian IV. style; but in this branch of art no marked excellence has been obtained.

AUTHORITIES.—J. P. Trap, Statistisk Topographisk Beskrivelse af Kongeriget Danmark (Copenhagen, 1859-1860, 3 vols., 2nd ed., 1872-1879); V. Falbe-Hansen and W. Scharling, Danmarks Statistik (Copenhagen, 1878-1891, 6 vols.). (Various writers) Vort Folk i det nittende Aarhundrede (Copenhagen, 1899 et seq.), illustrated; J. Carlsen, H. Olrik and C. N. Starcke, Le Danemark (Copenhagen, 1900), 700 pp.; illustrated, published in connexion with the Paris Exhibition. Statistisk Aarbog (1896, &c.). Annual publication, and other publications of Statens Statistiske Bureau, Copenhagen; Annuaire mtorologique, Danish Meteorological Institution, Copenhagen; E. Lffler, Dnemarks Natur and Volk (Copenhagen, 1905); Margaret Thomas, Denmark Past and Present (London, 1902). (C. A. G.; O. J. R. H.)


Ancient.—Our earliest knowledge of Denmark is derived from Pliny, who speaks of three islands named "Skandiai," a name which is also applied to Sweden. He says nothing about the inhabitants of these islands, but tells us more about the Jutish peninsula, or Cimbric Chersonese as he calls it. He places the Saxons on the neck, above them the Sigoulones, Sabaliggoi and Kobandoi, then the Chaloi, then above them the Phoundousioi, then the Charondes and finally the Kimbroi. He also mentions the three islands called Alokiai, at the northern end of the peninsula. This would point to the fact that the Limfjord was then open at both ends, and agree with Adam of Bremen (iv. 16), who also speaks of three islands called Wendila, Morse and Thud. The Cimbri and Charydes are mentioned in the Monumentum Ancyranum as sending embassies to Augustus in A.D. 5. The Promontorium Cimbrorum is spoken of in Pliny, who says that the Sinus Codanus lies between it and Mons Saevo. The latter place is probably to be found in the high-lying land on the N.E. coast of Germany, and the Sinus Codanus must be the S.W. corner of the Baltic, and not the whole sea. Pomponius Mela says that the Cimbri and Teutones dwelt on the Sinus Codanus, the latter also in Scandinavia (or Sweden). The Romans believed that these Cimbri and Teutones were the same as those who invaded Gaul and Italy at the end of the 2nd century B.C. The Cimbri may probably be traced in the province of Aalborg, formerly known as Himmerland; the Teutones, with less certainty, may be placed in Thyth or Thyland, north of the Limfjord. No further reference to these districts is found till towards the close of the migration period, about the beginning of the 6th century, when the Heruli (q.v.), a nation dwelling in or near the basin of the Elbe, were overthrown by the Langobardi. According to Procopius (Bellum Gothicum, ii. 15), a part of them made their way across the "desert of the Slavs," through the lands of the Warni and the Danes to Thoule (i.e. Sweden). This is the first recorded use of the name "Danes." It occurs again in Gregory of Tours (Historiae Francorum, iii. 3) in connexion with an irruption of a Gtish (loosely called Danish) fleet into the Netherlands (c. 520). From this time the use of the name is fairly common. The heroic poetry of the Anglo-Saxons may carry the name further back, though probably it is not very ancient, at all events on the mainland.

According to late Danish tradition Denmark now consisted of Vitheslaeth (i.e. Zealand, Men, Falster and Laaland), Jutland (with Fyen) and Skaane. Jutland was acquired by Dan, the eponymous ancestor of the Danes. He also won Skaane, including the modern provinces of Halland, Kristianstad, Malmhus and Blekinge, and these remained part of Denmark until the middle of the 17th century. These three divisions always remained more or less distinct, and the Danish kings had to be recognized at Lund, Ringsted and Viborg, but Zealand was from time immemorial the centre of government, and Lejre was the royal seat and national sanctuary. According to tradition this dates from the time of Skildr, the eponymous ancestor of the Danish royal family of Skildungar. He was a son of Othin and husband of the goddess Gefjon, who created Zealand. Anglo-Saxon tradition also speaks of Scyld (i.e. Skildr), who was regarded as the ancestor of both the Danish and English royal families, and it represented him as coming as a child of unknown origin in a rudderless boat. There can be little doubt that from a remote antiquity Zealand had been a religious sanctuary, and very probably the god Nerthus was worshipped here by the Angli and other tribes as described in Tacitus (Germania, c. 40). The Lejre sanctuary was still in existence in the time of Thietmar of Merseburg (i. 9), at the beginning of the 11th century.

In Scandinavian tradition the next great figure is Fre the peace-king, but it is not before the 5th century that we meet with the names of any kings which can be regarded as definitely historical. In Beowulf we hear of a Danish king Healfdene, who had three sons, Heorogar, Hrothgar and Halga. The hero Beowulf comes to the court of Hrothgar from the land of the Gtar, where Hygelac is king. This Hygelac is undoubtedly to be identified with the Chochilaicus, king of the Danes (really Gtar) who, as mentioned above, made a raid against the Franks c. 520. Beowulf himself won fame in this campaign, and by the aid of this definite chronological datum we can place the reign of Healfdene in the last half of the 5th century, and that of Hrothgar's nephew Hrothwulf, son of Halga, about the middle of the 6th century. Hrothgar and Halga correspond to Saxo's Hroar and Helgi, while Hrothwulf is the famous Rolvo or Hrlfr Kraki of Danish and Norse saga. There is probably some historical truth in the story that Heoroweard or Hirvarr was responsible for the death of Hrlfr Kraki. Possibly a still earlier king of Denmark was Sigarr or Sigehere, who has won lasting fame from the story of his daughter Signy and her lover Hagbarr.

From the middle of the 6th to the beginning of the 8th century we know practically nothing of Danish history. There are numerous kings mentioned in Saxo, but it is impossible to identify them historically. We have mention at the beginning of the 8th century of a Danish king Ongendus (cf. O. E. Ongeneow) who received a mission led by St Willibrord, and it was probably about this time that there flourished a family of whom tradition records a good deal. The founder of this line was Ivarr Vifami of Skaane, who became king of Sweden. His daughter Aur married one Hroerekr and became the mother of Haraldr Hilditnn. The genealogy of Haraldr is given differently in Saxo, but there can be no doubt of his historical existence. In his time it is said that the land was divided into four kingdoms—Skaane, Zealand, Fyen and Jutland. After a reign of great splendour Haraldr met his death in the great battle of Brvalla (Bravk in stergtland), where he was opposed by his nephew Ring, king of Sweden.

The battle probably took place about the year 750. Fifty years later the Danes begin to be mentioned with comparative frequency in continental annals. From 777-798 we have mention of a certain Sigifridus as king of the Danes, and then in 804 his name is replaced by that of one Godefridus, This Godefridus is the Godefridus-Guthredus of Saxo, and is to be identified also with Gurr the Yngling, king in Vestfold in Norway. He came into conflict with Charlemagne, and was preparing a great expedition against him when he was killed by one of his own followers (c. 810). He was succeeded by his brother Hemmingus, but the latter died in 812 and there was a disputed succession. The two claimants were "Sigefridus nepos Godefridi regis" and "Anulo nepos Herioldi quondam regis" (i.e. probably Haraldr Hilditnn). A great battle took place in which both claimants were slain, but the party of Anulo (O.N. li) were victorious and appointed as kings Anulo's brothers Herioldus and Reginfridus. They soon paid a visit to Vestfold, "the extreme district of their realm, whose peoples and chief men were refusing to be made subject to them," and on their return had trouble with the sons of Godefridus. The latter expelled them from their kingdom, and in 814 Reginfridus fell in a vain attempt to regain it. Herioldus now received the support of the emperor, and after several unsuccessful attempts a compromise was effected in 819 when the parties agreed to share the realm. In 820 Herioldus was baptized at Mainz and received from the emperor a grant of Riustringen in N.E. Friesland. In 827 he was expelled from his kingdom, but St Anskar, who had been sent with Herioldus to preach Christianity, remained at his post. In 836 we find one Horic as king of the Danes; he was probably a son of Godefridus. During his reign there was trouble with the emperor as to the overlordship of Frisia. In the meantime Herioldus remained on friendly terms with Lothair and received a further grant of Walcheren and the neighbouring districts. In 850 Horic was attacked by his own nephews and compelled to share the kingdom with them, while in 852 Herioldus was charged with treachery and slain by the Franks. In 854 a revolution took place in Denmark itself. Horic's nephew Godwin, returning from exile with a large following of Northmen, overthrew his uncle in a three days' battle in which all members of the royal house except one boy are said to have perished. This boy now became king as "Horicus junior." Of his reign we know practically nothing. The next kings mentioned are Sigafrid and Halfdane, who were sons of the great Viking leader Ragnarr Lobrok. There is also mention of a third king named Godefridus. The exact chronology and relationship of these kings it is impossible to determine, but we know that Healfdene died in Scotland in 877, while Godefridus was treacherously slain by Henry of Saxony in 885. During these and the next few years there is mention of more than one king of the names Sigefridus and Godefridus: the most important event associated with their names is that two kings Sigefridus and Godefridus fell in the great battle on the Dyle in 891.

We now have the names of several kings, Heiligo, Olaph (of Swedish origin), and his sons Chnob and Gurth. Then come a Danish ruler Sigeric, followed by Hardegon, son of Swein, coming from Norway. At some date after 916 we find mention of one "Hardecnuth Urm" ruling among the Danes. Adam of Bremen, from whom these details come, was himself uncertain whether "so many kings or rather tyrants of the Danes ruled together or succeeded one another at short intervals." Hardecnuth Urm is to be identified with the famous Gorm the old, who married Thyra Danmarkarbt: their son was Harold Bluetooth. (A. MW.)

Medieval and Modern.—Danish history first becomes authentic at the beginning of the 9th century. The Danes, the southernmost branch of the Scandinavian family, referred to by Alfred (c. 890) as occupying Jutland, the islands and Scania, were, in 777, strong enough to defy the Frank empire by harbouring its fugitives. Five years later we find a Danish king, Sigfrid, among the princes who assembled at Lippe in 782 to make their submission to Charles the Great. About the same time Willibrord, from his see at Utrecht, made an unsuccessful attempt to convert the "wild Danes." These three salient facts are practically the sum of our knowledge of early Danish history previous to the Viking period. That mysterious upheaval, most generally attributed to a love of adventure, stimulated by the pressure of over-population, began with the ravaging of Lindisfarne in 793, and virtually terminated with the establishment of Rollo in Normandy (911). There can be little doubt that the earlier of these expeditions were from Denmark, though the term Northmen was originally applied indiscriminately to all these terrible visitants from the unknown north. The rovers who first chastened and finally colonized southern England and Normandy were certainly Danes.

Conversion of the Danes.

The Viking raids were one of the determining causes of the establishment of the feudal monarchies of western Europe, but the untameable freebooters were themselves finally subdued by the Church. At first sight it seems curious that Christianity should have been so slow to reach Denmark. But we must bear in mind that one very important consequence of the Viking raids was to annihilate the geographical remoteness which had hitherto separated Denmark from the Christian world. Previously to 793 there lay between Jutland and England a sea which no keel had traversed within the memory of man. The few and peaceful traders who explored those northern waters were careful never to lose sight of the Saxon, Frisian and Frankish shores during their passage. Nor was communication with the west by land any easier. For generations the obstinately heathen Saxons had lain, a compact and impenetrable mass, between Scandinavia and the Frank empire, nor were the measures adopted by Charles the Great for the conversion of the Saxons to the true faith very much to the liking of their warlike Danish neighbours on the other side. But by the time that Charles had succeeded in "converting" the Saxons, the Viking raids were already at their height, and though generally triumphant, necessity occasionally taught the Northmen the value of concessions. Thus it was the desire to secure his Jutish kingdom which induced Harold Klak, in 826, to sail up the Rhine to Ingelheim, and there accept baptism, with his wife, his son Godfred and 400 of his suite, acknowledging the emperor as his overlord, and taking back with him to Denmark the missionary monk Ansgar. Ansgar preached in Denmark from 826 to 861, but it was not till after the subsidence of the Viking raids that Adaldag, archbishop of Hamburg, could open a new and successful mission, which resulted in the erection of the bishoprics of Schleswig, Ribe and Aarhus (c. 948), though the real conversion of Denmark must be dated from the baptism of King Harold Bluetooth (960).

Danish expansion.

Meanwhile the Danish monarchy was attempting to aggrandize itself at the expense of the Germans, the Wends who then occupied the Baltic littoral as far as the Vistula, and the other Scandinavian kingdoms. Harold Bluetooth (940-986) subdued German territory south of the Eider, extended the Danevirke, Denmark's great line of defensive fortifications, to the south of Schleswig and planted the military colony of Julin or Jomsborg, at the mouth of the Oder. Part of Norway was first seized after the united Danes and Swedes had defeated and slain King Olaf Trygvessn at the battle of Svolde (1000); and between 1028 and 1035 Canute the Great added the whole kingdom to his own; but the union did not long survive him. Equally short-lived was the Danish dominion in England, which originated in a great Viking expedition of King Sweyn I.

Consolidation of the kingdom under the Valdemars, 1157-1251.

The period between the death of Canute the Great and the accession of Valdemar I. was a troublous time for Denmark. The kingdom was harassed almost incessantly, and more than once partitioned, by pretenders to the throne, who did not scruple to invoke the interference of the neighbouring monarchs, and even of the heathen Wends, who established themselves for a time on the southern islands. Yet, throughout this chaos, one thing made for future stability, and that was the growth and consolidation of a national church, which culminated in the erection of the archbishopric of Lund (c. 1104) and the consequent ecclesiastical independence of Denmark. The third archbishop of Lund was Absalon (1128-1201), Denmark's first great statesman, who so materially assisted Valdemar I. (1157-1182) and Canute VI. (1182-1202) to establish the dominion of Denmark over the Baltic, mainly at the expense of the Wends. The policy of Absalon was continued on a still vaster scale by Valdemar II. (1202-1241), at a time when the German kingdom was too weak and distracted to intervene to save its seaboard; but the treachery of a vassal and the loss of one great battle sufficed to plunge this unwieldy, unsubstantial empire in the dust. (See VALDEMAR I., II., and ABSALON.)

Yet the age of the Valdemars was one of the most glorious in Danish history, and it is of political importance as marking a turning-point. Favourable circumstances had, from the first, given the Danes the lead in Scandinavia. They held the richest and therefore the most populous lands, and geographically they were nearer than their neighbours to western civilization. Under the Valdemars, however, the ancient patriarchal system was merging into a more complicated development, of separate estates. The monarchy, now dominant, and far wealthier than before, rested upon the support of the great nobles, many of whom held their lands by feudal tenure, and constituted the royal Raad, or council. The clergy, fortified by royal privileges, had also risen to influence; but celibacy and independence of the civil courts tended to make them more and more of a separate caste. Education was spreading. Numerous Danes, lay as well as clerical, regularly frequented the university of Paris. There were signs too of the rise of a vigorous middle class, due to the extraordinary development of the national resources (chiefly the herring fisheries, horse-breeding and cattle-rearing) and the foundation of gilds, the oldest of which, the Edslag of Schleswig, dates from the early 12th century. The bonder, or yeomen, were prosperous and independent, with well-defined rights. Danish territory extended over 60,000 sq. kilometres, or nearly double its present area; the population was about 700,000; and 160,000 men and 1400 ships were available for national defence.

Period of disintegration.

On the death of Valdemar II. a period of disintegration ensued. Valdemar's son, Eric Plovpenning, succeeded him as king; but his near kinsfolk also received huge appanages, and family discords led to civil wars. Throughout the 13th and part of the 14th century, the struggle raged between the Danish kings and the Schleswig dukes; and of six monarchs no fewer than three died violent deaths. Superadded to these troubles was a prolonged struggle for supremacy between the popes and the crown, and, still more serious, the beginning of a breach between the kings and nobles, which had important constitutional consequences. The prevalent disorder had led to general lawlessness, in consequence of which the royal authority had been widely extended; and a strong opposition gradually arose which protested against the abuses of this authority. In 1282 the nobles extorted from King Eric Glipping the first Haandfaestning, or charter, which recognized the Danehof, or national assembly, as a regular branch of the administration and gave guarantees against further usurpations. Christopher II. (1319-1331) was constrained to grant another charter considerably reducing the prerogative, increasing the privileges of the upper classes, and at the same time reducing the burden of taxation. But aristocratic licence proved as mischievous as royal incompetence; and on the death of Christopher II. the whole kingdom was on the verge of dissolution. Eastern Denmark was in the hands of one magnate; another magnate held Jutland and Fnen in pawn; the dukes of Schleswig were practically independent of the Danish crown; the Scandian provinces had (1332) surrendered themselves to Sweden.

Valdemar IV., 1340-1375.

It was reserved for another Valdemar (Valdemar IV., q.v.) to reunite and weld together the scattered members of his heritage. His long reign (1340-1375) resulted in the re-establishment of Denmark as the great Baltic power. It is also a very interesting period of her social and constitutional development. This great ruler, who had to fight, year after year, against foreign and domestic foes, could, nevertheless, always find time to promote the internal prosperity of his much afflicted country. For the dissolution of Denmark, during the long anarchy, had been internal as well as external. The whole social fabric had been convulsed and transformed. The monarchy had been undermined. The privileged orders had aggrandized themselves at the expense of the community. The yeoman class had sunk into semi-serfdom. In a word, the natural cohesion of the Danish nation had been loosened and there was no security for law and justice. To make an end of this universal lawlessness Valdemar IV. was obliged, in the first place, to re-establish the royal authority by providing the crown with a regular and certain income. This he did by recovering the alienated royal demesnes in every direction, and from henceforth the annual landgilde, or rent, paid by the royal tenants, became the monarch's principal source of revenue. Throughout his reign Valdemar laboured incessantly to acquire as much land as possible. Moreover, the old distinction between the king's private estate and crown property henceforth ceases; all such property was henceforth regarded as the hereditary possession of the Danish crown.

The national army was also re-established on its ancient footing. Not only were the magnates sharply reminded that they held their lands on military tenure, but the towns were also made to contribute both men and ships, and peasant levies, especially archers, were recruited from every parish. Everywhere indeed Valdemar intervened personally. The smallest detail was not beneath his notice. Thus he invented nets for catching wolves and built innumerable water-mills, "for he would not let the waters run into the sea before they had been of use to the community." Under such a ruler law and order were speedily re-established. The popular tribunals regained their authority, and a supreme court of justice, Det Kongelige Retterting, presided over by Valdemar himself, not only punished the unruly and guarded the prerogatives of the crown, but also protected the weak and defenceless from the tyranny of the strong. Nor did Valdemar hesitate to meet his people in public and periodically render an account of his stewardship. He voluntarily resorted to the old practice of summoning national assemblies, the so-called Danehof. At the first of these assemblies held at Nyborg, Midsummer Day 1314, the bishops and councillors solemnly promised that the commonalty should enjoy all the ancient rights and privileges conceded to them by Valdemar II., and the wise provision that the Danehof should meet annually considerably strengthened its authority. The keystone to the whole constitutional system was "King Valdemar's Charter" issued in May 1360 at the Rigsmde, or parliament, held at Kalundborg in May 1360. This charter was practically an act of national pacification, the provisions of which king and people together undertook to enforce for the benefit of the commonweal.

The Union of Kalmar, 1397.

The work of Valdemar was completed and consolidated by his illustrious daughter Margaret (1375-1412), whose crowning achievement was the Union of Kalmar (1397), whereby she sought to combine the three northern kingdoms into a single state dominated by Denmark. In any case Denmark was bound to be the only gainer by the Union. Her population was double that of the two other kingdoms combined, and neither Margaret nor her successors observed the stipulations that each country should retain its own laws and customs and be ruled by natives only. In both Norway and Sweden, therefore, the Union was highly unpopular. The Norwegian aristocracy was too weak, however, seriously to endanger the Union at any time, but Sweden was, from the first, decidedly hostile to Margaret's whole policy. Nevertheless during her lifetime the system worked fairly well; but her pupil and successor, Eric of Pomerania, was unequal to the burden of empire and embroiled himself both with his neighbours and his subjects. The Hanseatic League, whose political ascendancy had been shaken by the Union, enraged by Eric's efforts to bring in the Dutch as commercial rivals, as well as by the establishment of the Sound tolls, materially assisted the Holsteiners in their twenty-five years' war with Denmark (1410-35), and Eric VII. himself was finally deposed (1439) in favour of his nephew, Christopher of Bavaria.

Growth of the power of the nobles.

The deposition of Eric marks another turning-point in Danish history. It was the act not of the people but of the Rigsraad (Senate), which had inherited the authority of the ancient Danehof and, after the death of Margaret, grew steadily in power at the expense of the crown. As the government grew more and more aristocratic, the position of the peasantry steadily deteriorated. It is under Christopher that we first hear, for instance, of the Vornedskab, or patriarchal control of the landlords over their tenants, a system which degenerated into rank slavery. In Jutland, too, after the repression, in 1441, of a peasant rising, something very like serfdom was introduced.

Break-up of the Union.

On the death of Christopher III. without heirs, in 1448, the Rigsraad elected his distant cousin, Count Christian of Oldenburg, king; but Sweden preferred Karl Knutsson (Charles "VIII."), while Norway finally combined with Denmark, at the conference of Halmstad, in a double election which practically terminated the Union, though an agreement was come to that the survivor of the two kings should reign over all three kingdoms. Norway, subsequently, threw in her lot definitively with Denmark. Dissensions resulting in interminable civil wars had, even before the Union, exhausted the resources of the poorest of the three northern realms; and her ruin was completed by the ravages of the Black Death, which wiped out two-thirds of her population. Unfortunately, too, for Norway's independence, the native gentry had gradually died out, and were succeeded by immigrant Danish fortune-hunters; native burgesses there were none, and the peasantry were mostly thralls; so that, excepting the clergy, there was no patriotic class to stand up for the national liberties.

Far otherwise was it in the wealthier kingdom of Sweden. Here the clergy and part of the nobility were favourable to the Union; but the vast majority of the people hated it as a foreign usurpation. Matters were still further complicated by the continual interference of the Hanseatic League; and Christian I. (1448-1481) and Hans (1481-1513), whose chief merit it is to have founded the Danish fleet, were, during the greater part of their reigns, only nominally kings of Sweden. Hans also received in fief the territory of Dietmarsch from the emperor, but, in attempting to subdue the hardy Dietmarschers, suffered a crushing defeat in which the national banner called "Danebrog" fell into the enemy's hands (1500). Moreover, this defeat led to a successful rebellion in Sweden, and a long and ruinous war with Lbeck, terminated by the peace of Malm, 1512. It was during this war that a strong Danish fleet dominated the Baltic for the first time since the age of the Valdemars.

Christian II., 1513-1523.

Frederick I., 1523-1533. The Reformation.

The Count's War, 1533-36.

On the succession of Hans's son, Christian II. (1513-1523), Margaret's splendid dream of a Scandinavian empire seemed, finally, about to be realized. The young king, a man of character and genius, had wide views and original ideas. Elected king of Denmark and Norway, he succeeded in subduing Sweden by force of arms; but he spoiled everything at the culmination of his triumph by the hideous crime and blunder known as the Stockholm massacre, which converted the politically divergent Swedish nation into the irreconcilable foe of the unional government (see CHRISTIAN II.). Christian's contempt of nationality in Sweden is the more remarkable as in Denmark proper he sided with the people against the aristocracy, to his own undoing in that age of privilege and prejudice. His intentions, as exhibited to his famous Landelove (National Code), were progressive and enlightened to an eminent degree; so much so, indeed, that they mystified the people as much as they alienated the patricians; but his actions were often of revolting brutality, and his whole career was vitiated by an incurable double-mindedness which provoked general distrust. Yet there is no doubt that Christian II. was a true patriot, whose ideal it was to weld the three northern kingdoms into a powerful state, independent of all foreign influences, especially of German influence as manifested in the commercial tyranny of the Hansa League. His utter failure was due, partly to the vices of an undisciplined temperament, and partly to the extraordinary difficulties of the most inscrutable period of European history, when the shrewdest heads were at fault and irreparable blunders belonged to the order of the day. That period was the period of the Reformation, which profoundly affected the politics of Scandinavia. Christian II. had always subordinated religion to politics, and was Papist or Lutheran according to circumstances. But, though he treated the Church more like a foe than a friend and was constantly at war with the Curia, he retained the Catholic form of church worship and never seems to have questioned the papal supremacy. On the flight of Christian II. and the election of his uncle, Frederick I. (1523-1533), the Church resumed her jurisdiction and everything was placed on the old footing. The newly elected and still insecure German king at first remained neutral; but in the autumn of 1525 the current of Lutheranism began to run so strongly in Denmark as to threaten to whirl away every opposing obstacle. This novel and disturbing phenomenon was mainly due to the zeal and eloquence of the ex-monk Hans Tausen and his associates, or disciples, Peder Plad and Sadolin; and, in the autumn of 1526, Tausen was appointed one of the royal chaplains. The three ensuing years were especially favourable for the Reformation, as during that time the king had unlooked-for opportunities for filling the vacant episcopal sees with men after his own heart, and at heart he was a Lutheran. The reformation movement in Denmark was further promoted by Schleswig-Holstein influence. Frederick's eldest son Duke Christian had, since 1527, resided at Haderslev, where he collected round him Lutheran teachers from Germany, and made his court the centre of the propaganda of the new doctrine. On the other hand, the Odense Recess of the 20th of August 1527, which put both confessions on a footing of equality, remained unrepealed; and so long as it remained in force, the spiritual jurisdiction of the bishops, and, consequently, their authority over the "free preachers" (whose ambition convulsed all the important towns of Denmark and aimed at forcibly expelling the Catholic priests from their churches) remained valid, to the great vexation of the reformers. The inevitable ecclesiastical crisis was still further postponed by the superior stress of two urgent political events—Christian II.'s invasion of Norway (1531) and the outbreak, in 1533, of "Grevens fejde," or "The Count's War" (1534-36), the count in question being Christopher of Oldenburg, great-nephew of King Christian I., whom Lbeck and her allies, on the death of Frederick I., raised up against Frederick's son Christian III. The Catholic party and the lower orders generally took the part of Count Christopher, who acted throughout as the nominee of the captive Christian II., while the Protestant party, aided by the Holstein dukes and Gustavus Vasa of Sweden, sided with Christian III. The war ended with the capture of Copenhagen by the forces of Christian III., on the 29th of July 1536, and the triumph of so devoted a Lutheran sealed the fate of the Roman Catholic Church in Denmark, though even now it was necessary for the victorious king to proceed against the bishops and their friends by a coup d'tat, engineered by his German generals the Rantzaus. The Recess of 1536 enacted that the bishops should forfeit their temporal and spiritual authority, and that all their property should be transferred to the crown for the good of the commonwealth. In the following year a Church ordinance, based upon the canons of Luther, Melanchthon and Bugenhagen, was drawn up, submitted to Luther for his approval, and promulgated on the 2nd of September 1537. On the same day seven "superintendents," including Tausen and Sadolin, all of whom had worked zealously for the cause of the Reformation, were consecrated in place of the dethroned bishops. The position of the superintendents and of the reformed church generally was consolidated by the Articles of Ribe in 1542, and the constitution of the Danish church has practically continued the same to the present day. But Catholicism could not wholly or immediately be dislodged by the teaching of Luther. It had struck deep roots into the habits and feelings of the people, and traces of its survival were distinguishable a whole century after the triumph of the Reformation. Catholicism lingered longest in the cathedral chapters. Here were to be found men of ability proof against the eloquence of Hans Tausen or Peder Plad and quite capable of controverting their theories—men like Povl Helgesen, for instance, indisputably the greatest Danish theologian of his day, a scholar whose voice was drowned amidst the clash of conflicting creeds.

Effects of the Reformation.

European influence of Denmark, 1544-1626.

Though the Reformation at first did comparatively little for education,[1] and the whole spiritual life of Denmark was poor and feeble in consequence for at least a generation afterwards, the change of religion was of undeniable, if temporary, benefit to the state from the political point of view. The enormous increase of the royal revenue consequent upon the confiscation of the property of the Church could not fail to increase the financial stability of the monarchy. In particular the suppression of the monasteries benefited the crown in two ways. The old church had, indeed, frequently rendered the state considerable financial aid, but such voluntary assistance was, from the nature of the case, casual and arbitrary. Now, however, the state derived a fixed and certain revenue from the confiscated lands; and the possession of immense landed property at the same time enabled the crown advantageously to conduct the administration. The gross revenue of the state is estimated to have risen threefold. Before the Reformation the annual revenue from land averaged 400,000 bushels of corn; after the confiscations of Church property it averaged 1,200,000 bushels. The possession of a full purse materially assisted the Danish government in its domestic administration, which was indeed epoch-making. It enabled Christian III. to pay off his German mercenaries immediately after the religious coup d'tat of 1536. It enabled him to prosecute shipbuilding with such energy that, by 1550, the royal fleet numbered at least thirty vessels, which were largely employed as a maritime police in the pirate-haunted Baltic and North Seas. It enabled him to create and remunerate adequately a capable official class, which proved its efficiency under the strictest supervision, and ultimately produced a whole series of great statesmen and admirals like Johan Friis, Peder Oxe, Herluf Trolle and Peder Skram. It is not too much to say that the increased revenue derived from the appropriation of Church property, intelligently applied, gave Denmark the hegemony of the North during the latter part of Christian III.'s reign, the whole reign of Frederick II. and the first twenty-five years of the reign of Christian IV., a period embracing, roughly speaking, eighty years (1544-1626). Within this period Denmark was indisputably the leading Scandinavian power. While Sweden, even after the advent of Gustavus Vasa, was still of but small account in Europe, Denmark easily held her own in Germany and elsewhere, even against Charles V., and was important enough, in 1553, to mediate a peace between the emperor and Saxony. Twice during this period Denmark and Sweden measured their strength in the open field, on the first occasion in the "Scandinavian Seven Years' War" (1562-70), on the second in the "Kalmar War" (1611-13), and on both occasions Denmark prevailed, though the temporary advantage she gained was more than neutralized by the intense feeling of hostility which the unnatural wars, between the two kindred peoples of Scandinavia, left behind them. Still, the fact remains that, for a time, Denmark was one of the great powers of Europe. Frederick II., in his later years (1571-1588), aspired to the dominion of all the seas which washed the Scandinavian coasts, and before he died he was able to enforce the rule that all foreign ships should strike their topsails to Danish men-of-war as a token of his right to rule the northern seas. Favourable political circumstances also contributed to this general acknowledgment of Denmark's maritime greatness. The power of the Hansa had gone; the Dutch were enfeebled by their contest with Spain; England's sea-power was yet in the making; Spain, still the greatest of the maritime nations, was exhausting her resources in the vain effort to conquer the Dutch. Yet more even than to felicitous circumstances, Denmark owed her short-lived greatness to the great statesmen and administrators whom Frederick II. succeeded in gathering about him. Never before, since the age of Margaret, had Denmark been so well governed, never before had she possessed so many political celebrities nobly emulous for the common good.

Denmark at the accession of Christian IV., 1588.

Frederick II. was succeeded by his son Christian IV. (April 4, 1588), who attained his majority on the 17th of August 1596, at the age of nineteen. The realm which Christian IV. was to govern had undergone great changes within the last two generations. Towards the south the boundaries of the Danish state remained unchanged. Levensaa and the Eider still separated Denmark from the Empire. Schleswig was recognized as a Danish fief, in contradistinction to Holstein, which owed vassalage to the Empire. The "kingdom" stretched as far as Kolding and Skedborg, where the "duchy" began; and this duchy since its amalgamation with Holstein by means of a common Landtag, and especially since the union of the dual duchy with the kingdom on almost equal terms in 1533, was, in most respects, a semi-independent state, Denmark, moreover, like Europe in general, was, politically, on the threshold of a transitional period. During the whole course of the 16th century the monarchical form of government was in every large country, with the single exception of Poland, rising on the ruins of feudalism. The great powers of the late 16th and early 17th centuries were to be the strong, highly centralized, hereditary monarchies, like France, Spain and Sweden. There seemed to be no reason why Denmark also should not become a powerful state under the guidance of a powerful monarchy, especially as the sister state of Sweden was developing into a great power under apparently identical conditions. Yet, while Sweden was surely ripening into the dominating power of northern Europe, Denmark had as surely entered upon a period of uninterrupted and apparently incurable decline. What was the cause of this anomaly? Something of course must be allowed for the superior and altogether extraordinary genius of the great princes of the house of Vasa; yet the causes of the decline of Denmark lay far deeper than this. They may roughly be summed up under two heads: the inherent weakness of an elective monarchy, and the absence of that public spirit which is based on the intimate alliance of ruler and ruled. Whilst Gustavus Vasa had leaned upon the Swedish peasantry, in other words upon the bulk of the Swedish nation, which was and continued to be an integral part of the Swedish body-politic, Christian III. on his accession had crushed the middle and lower classes in Denmark and reduced them to political insignificance. Yet it was not the king who benefited by this blunder. The Danish monarchy since the days of Margaret had continued to be purely elective; and a purely elective monarchy at that stage of the political development of Europe was a mischievous anomaly. It signified in the first place that the crown was not the highest power in the state, but was subject to the aristocratic Rigsraad, or council of state. The Rigsraad was the permanent owner of the realm and the crown-lands; the king was only their temporary administrator. If the king died before the election of his successor, the Rigsraad stepped into the king's place. Moreover, an elective monarchy implied that, at every fresh succession, the king was liable to be bound by a new Haandfaestning, or charter. The election itself might, and did, become a mere formality; but the condition precedent of election, the acceptance of the charter, invariably limiting the royal authority, remained a reality. This period of aristocratic rule, which dates practically from the accession of Frederick I. (1523), and lasted for nearly a century and a half, is known in Danish history as Adelsvaelde, or rule of the nobles.

Again, the king was the ruler of the realm, but over a very large portion of it he had but a slight control. The crown-lands and most of the towns were under his immediate jurisdiction, but by the side of the crown-lands lay the estates of the nobility, which already comprised about one-half of the superficial area of Denmark, and were in many respects independent of the central government both as regards taxation and administration. In a word, the monarchy had to share its dominion with the nobility; and the Danish nobility in the 16th century was one of the most exclusive and selfish aristocracies in Europe, and already far advanced in decadence. Hermetically sealing itself from any intrusion from below, it deteriorated by close and constant intermarriage; and it was already, both morally and intellectually, below the level of the rest of the nation. Yet this very aristocracy, whose claim to consideration was based not upon its own achievements but upon the length of its pedigrees, insisted upon an amplification of its privileges which endangered the economical and political interests of the state and the nation. The time was close at hand when a Danish magnate was to demonstrate that he preferred the utter ruin of his country to any abatement of his own personal dignity.

All below the king and the nobility were generally classified together as "subjects." Of these lower orders the clergy stood first in the social scale. As a spiritual estate, indeed, it had ceased to exist at the Reformation, though still represented in the Rigsdag or diet. Since then too it had become quite detached from the nobility, which ostentatiously despised the teaching profession. The clergy recruited themselves therefore from the class next below them, and looked more and more to the crown for help and protection as they drew apart from the gentry, who, moreover, as dispensers of patronage, lost no opportunity of appropriating church lands and cutting down tithes.

The burgesses had not yet recovered from the disaster of "Grevens fejde"; but while the towns had become more dependent on the central power, they had at the same time been released from their former vexatious subjection to the local magnates, and could make their voices heard in the Rigsdag, where they were still, though inadequately, represented. Within the Estate of Burgesses itself, too, a levelling process had begun. The old municipal patriciate, which used to form the connecting link between the bourgeoisie and the nobility, had disappeared, and a feeling of common civic fellowship had taken its place. All this tended to enlarge the political views of the burgesses, and was not without its influence on the future. Yet, after all, the prospects of the burgesses depended mainly on economic conditions; and in this respect there was a decided improvement, due to the increasing importance of money and commerce all over Europe, especially as the steady decline of the Hanse towns immediately benefited the trade of Denmark-Norway; Norway by this time being completely merged in the Danish state, and ruled from Copenhagen. There can, indeed, be no doubt that the Danish and Norwegian merchants at the end of the 16th century flourished exceedingly, despite the intrusion and competition of the Dutch and the dangers to neutral shipping arising from the frequent wars between England, Spain and the Netherlands.

At the bottom of the social ladder lay the peasants, whose condition had decidedly deteriorated. Only in one respect had they benefited by the peculiar conditions of the 16th century: the rise in the price of corn without any corresponding rise in the land-tax must have largely increased their material prosperity. Yet the number of peasant-proprietors had diminished, while the obligations of the peasantry generally had increased; and, still worse, their obligations were vexatiously indefinite, varying from year to year and even from month to month. They weighed especially heavily on the so-called Ugedasmaend, who were forced to work two or three days a week in the demesne lands. This increase of villenage morally depressed the peasantry, and widened still further the breach between the yeomanry and the gentry. Politically its consequences were disastrous. While in Sweden the free and energetic peasant was a salutary power in the state, which he served with both mind and plough, the Danish peasant was sinking to the level of a bondman. While the Swedish peasants were well represented in the Swedish Riksdag, whose proceedings they sometimes dominated, the Danish peasantry had no political rights or privileges whatever.

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