Earth Day was founded in 1970 as a day of education about environmental issues, and Earth Day 2021 will occur on Thursday, April 22—the holiday's 51st anniversary. The holiday is now a global celebration that’s sometimes extended into Earth Week, a full seven days of events focused on green living. The brainchild of Senator Gaylord Nelson and inspired by the protests of the 1960s, Earth Day began as a “national teach-in on the environment” and was held on April 22 to maximize the number of students that could be reached on university campuses. By raising public awareness of pollution, Nelson hoped to bring environmental causes into the national spotlight.
Earth Day - Official Site
By the early 1960s, Americans were becoming aware of the effects of pollution on the environment. Rachel Carson’s 1962 bestseller Silent Springraised the specter of the dangerous effects of pesticides on the American countryside. Later in the decade, a 1969 fire on Cleveland’s Cuyahoga Rivershed light on the problem of chemical waste disposal. Until that time, protecting the planet’s natural resources was not part of the national political agenda, and the number of activists devoted to large-scale issues such as industrial pollution was minimal. Factories pumped pollutants into the air, lakes and rivers with few legal consequences. Big, gas-guzzling cars were considered a sign of prosperity. Only a small portion of the American population was familiar with–let alone practiced–recycling. - History
A ROYAL BIRTHDAY -
HRH PRINCESS BENEDIKTE
Benedikte Astrid Ingeborg Ingrid, Princess of Denmark, was born on 29 April 1944 at Amalienborg Palace as the daughter of King Frederik IX (d. 1972) and Queen Ingrid, born Princess of Sweden (d. 2000)
Wedding - On 3 February 1968, Princess Benedikte married His Highness Prince Richard zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg (d. 2017) in the Chapel of Fredensborg Palace. The Prince was born on 29 October 1934 as the son of Prince Gustav Albrecht zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg (1907-1944), and Margareta Fouché, Princess Margareta zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg.
Patronages and honorary memberships - Princess Benedikte is patron of a great many national organizations, institutions, and foundations and is an honorary member of various associations and societies.
Royal House Website
Royal House Facebook
REBILD NATIONAL PARK SOCIETY - BOARD MEETING
Online zoom meeting of Full Rebild Board - Denmark and U.S.A.
11:00am Central (Chicago)
LIGHT A CANDLE IN YOUR WINDOW FOR DENMARK LIBERATION DAY
4 May 1945 was the day when the Danes got the message on the radio about the liberation of Denmark from Germany during Second World War, after the German occupation since 9 April 1940. This meant that the Danes no longer had to use heavy black curtains to keep the light from getting out of their houses. People flocked into the streets, waving the Danish flag “Dannebro” and burned their black curtains. Many lighted candles on their windows.
June 1944 Invasion Issue of Danish Resistance publication "De Frie Danske" titled 'The Free Danes Welcome our Allied Friends' with a four colored front page photo of one US and one British rifleman each in front of their national flags...
De Frie Danske
Therefore, if you see candles on the windows in the evening of 4 May, it is because Danes celebrate and commemorate this day.
The message about the Danish liberation went out on 4 May, but the official liberation day is 5 May. It is celebrated with flags in flagpoles and on top of the busses.
SØREN KIERKEGAARD - BIRTHDAY
Søren Aabye Kierkegaard (1813-1855) was born on May 5th 1813 in Copenhagen. He was the seventh and last child of wealthy hosier, Michael Pedersen Kierkegaard and Ane Sørensdatter Lund, a former household servant and distant cousin of Michael Kierkegaard. This was Michael Kierkegaard’s second marriage, which came within a year of his first wife’s death and four months into Ane Lund’s first pregnancy. Michael Kierkegaard was a deeply melancholic man, sternly religious and carried a heavy burden of guilt, which he imposed on his children. Søren Kierkegaard often lamented that he had never had a childhood of carefree spontaneity, but that he had been “born old.” As a starving shepherd boy on the Jutland heath Michael had cursed God. His surname derived from the fact that his family was indentured to the parish priest, who provided a piece of the church (Kirke) farm (Gaard) for the family’s use. The name Kirkegaard (in older spelling Kierkegaard) more commonly means ‘churchyard’ or ‘cemetery.’ A sense of doom and death seemed to hover over Michael Kierkegaard for most of his 82 years. Although his material fortunes soon turned around dramatically, he was convinced that he had brought a curse on his family and that all his children were doomed to die by the age attained by Jesus Christ (33). Of Michael’s seven children, only Peter Christian and Søren Aabye survived beyond this age.
At age 12 Michael Kierkegaard was summoned to Copenhagen to work for his uncle as a journeyman in the cloth trade. Michael turned out to be an astute businessman and by the age of 24 had his own flourishing business. He subsequently inherited his uncle’s fortune, and augmented his wealth by some felicitous investments during the state bankruptcy of 1813 (the year, as Søren later put it, in which so many bad notes were put into circulation). Michael retired young and devoted himself to the study of theology, philosophy and literature. He bequeathed to his surviving sons Peter and Søren not only material wealth, but also supremely sharp intellect, a fathomless sense of guilt, and a relentless burden of melancholy. Although his father was wealthy, Søren was brought up rather stringently. He stood out at school because of his plain, unfashionable apparel and spindly stature. He learned to avoid teasing only by honing a caustic wit and a canny appreciation of other people’s psychological weaknesses. He was sent to one of Copenhagen’s best schools, The School of Civic Virtue [Borgerdydskolen], to receive a classical education. More than twice as much time was devoted to Latin in this school than to any other subject. Søren distinguished himself academically at school, especially in Latin and history, though according to his classmates he struggled with Danish composition. This became a real problem later, when he tried desperately to break into the Danish literary scene as a writer. His early publications were characterized by complex Germanic constructions and excessive use of Latin phrases. But eventually he became a master of his mother tongue, one of the two great stylists of Danish in his time, together with Hans Christian Andersen. Kierkegaard’s father is a constant presence in his authorship. He appears in stories of sacrifice, of inherited melancholy and guilt, as the archetypal patriarch, and even in explicit dedications at the beginning of several edifying discourses. Kierkegaard’s mother, on the other hand, never gets a mention in any of the writings – not even in his journal on the day of her death. His mother-tongue, though, is omnipresent. If we conjoin this fact with the remark in Concluding Unscientific Postscript (1846) that “… an omnipresent person should be recognizable precisely by being invisible,” we could speculate that the mother is even more present than the father, pervading all but the foreign language insertions in the texts. But whether or not there is any substance in this speculation, the invisibility of the mother and the treatment of women in general are indicative of Kierkegaard’s uneasy relationship with the opposite sex.
The statue of Søren Kierkegaard is located in the Royal Library Garden on Slotsholmen in central Copenhagen, Denmark. It was unveiled in 1918 but is based on an older statuette by Louis Hasselriis.
Søren Kierkegaard is an outsider in the history of philosophy. His peculiar authorship comprises a baffling array of different narrative points of view and disciplinary subject matter, including aesthetic novels, works of psychology and Christian dogmatics, satirical prefaces, philosophical “scraps” and “postscripts,” literary reviews, edifying discourses, Christian polemics, and retrospective self-interpretations. His arsenal of rhetoric includes irony, satire, parody, humor, polemic and a dialectical method of “indirect communication” – all designed to deepen the reader’s subjective passionate engagement with ultimate existential issues. Like his role models Socrates and Christ, Kierkegaard takes how one lives one’s life to be the prime criterion of being in the truth. Kierkegaard’s closest literary and philosophical models are Plato, J.G. Hamann, G.E. Lessing, and his teacher of philosophy at the University of Copenhagen Poul Martin Møller, although Goethe, the German Romantics, Hegel, Kant and the logic of Adolf Trendelenburg are also important influences. His prime theological influence is Martin Luther, although his reactions to his Danish contemporaries N.F.S. Grundtvig and H.L. Martensen are also crucial. In addition to being dubbed “the father of existentialism,” Kierkegaard is best known as a trenchant critic of Hegel and Hegelianism and for his invention or elaboration of a host of philosophical, psychological, literary and theological categories, including: anxiety, despair, melancholy, repetition, inwardness, irony, existential stages, inherited sin, teleological suspension of the ethical, Christian paradox, the absurd, reduplication, universal/exception, sacrifice, love as a duty, seduction, the demonic, and indirect communication. - Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Read More -
Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
On May 5, Denmark celebrates Liberation Day. It is the anniversary of the end of the occupation of Denmark by Nazi Germany. Liberation Day is not a public holiday, but special events are held on the occasion.
Denmark was occupied by Nazi Germany on April 9, 1940. The country capitulated withing six hours. As Denmark did not put up much resistance, its occupation was unusually lenient. For example, most institutions functioned relatively normally until 1943. Both the king and government remained in the country.
However, German authorities eventually did dissolve the government after the August 1943 crisis. Mass arrests began. By the end of the war, Danish resistance movement developed. When German authorities ordered to arrest and deport Danish Jews, members of the resistance evacuated almost all Jews to Sweden.
The German forces withdrew from Denmark on May 5, 1945 following their surrender to the Allies. The anniversary of this event is now celebrated as Liberation Day. On the day, public ceremonies are held in memory of the fallen members of the Danish resistance movement. Left-wing organizations sometimes hold demonstrations to remember the communist resistance fighters.
May 1945 Video
This movie reel shows scenes from Copenhagen in the days following the liberation of Denmark in May 1945. Accord to the National Museum of Denmark, this film was recorded between May 5 1945 and May 12 1945. Among other scenes, the following is shown (according to the National Museum of Denmark): Unrest at Dagmarhus guarded by German soldiers (May 5), resistance fighters behind cover during combat at the harbor, british troops’ arrival through Vesterbrogade (May 8), and Field Marshall Montgomery at Langelinie (May 12).
DANISH AMERICAN HISTORY - JENS MUNK EXPEDITION
On May 9, 1619, Jens Munk with two ships and 65 men set sail from Copenhagen for North America in search of the Northwest Passage to the Orient. Munk, commissioned by King Christian IV, made his way past the Southern tip of Greenland through Hudson Straight and into Hudson Bay. There he took possession of the country in the name of King Christian and called the region Novia Dania, but after extensive search failed to find the passage. Instead the expedition was confronted with a bleak winter, so Munk sailed south to what is now the Churchill River and prepared for the season. They built huts, cut wood, and killed wild fowl to compensate for their lack of equipment and provisions. They survived the autumn months well and the chaplain, Rasmus Jensen, led the celebration of Christmas in the traditional Lutheran way. But in January the winter became severe and exposure to the elements, shortage of food, and scurvy led to ill health and death. One man after another died, including chaplain Jensen, until only Jens Munk and two men remained alive. Finally the temperatures warmed and by June they regained their strength, and sailing the smaller of the two ships, returned to Denmark arriving on Christmas Day. (From "The Danish Americans" by George R. Nielsen)
More - Arctic Profiles
CONCERT SCHEDULE - DANISH FOLK MUSIC WITH KRISTIAN BUGGE AND GANGSPIL
Kristian Bugge is one of the busiest folk musicians rooted in Danish music. He was born 1979 in Næstved, Denmark. His family lived in Sweden for two years and then settled in Vejle in Eastern Jutland, Denmark. He attended a Rudolf Steiner School where, when asked in the fifth grade which instrument he would like, he chose the violin. Soon the two of them were inseparable. His mother, Lise, found a local music school offering ensemble playing for young people and that was where Kristian first met traditional music. He was fascinated by the catchy tunes, the close connection between music and dancing, and the spontaneous joy of playing among other young musicians – an experience which was to decide the direction of his musical career. He experienced music as a means of communication unhindered by national or cultural borders while travelling with the youth ensemble Fandango.
Now Kristian Bugge is very active on especially the Danish, Scandinavian and North American folk music scene, both as a musician and teacher. Kristian has specialized in the strong Danish folk music traditions, playing with groups like Jensen & Bugge, Kings of Polka and Gangspil. For about 10 years he played duo with the legendary accordionist, late Karl Skaarup. Kristian has a strong love to the traditional music but also really enjoy experimenting being part of crossover projects as the cooperation with classical percussionist Ronni Kot Wenzel in the very active duo Wenzell & Bugge and the exciting Danish folk big band Habadekuk.
Kristian - Facebook
SONNICH LYDOM & KRISTIAN BUGGE
"Two of Denmark’s leading folk musicians take you along on a tour around the music traditions of their home country!”
For many years Sonnich Lydom (accordion, harmonica, vocals) and Kristian Bugge (fiddle, vocals) kept meeting in many corners of the blooming Danish folk scene, often when there was a jam session going on. We always had a lot of fun together and finally decided to bring some of that on to the stage. Now we've have been playing and touring together for about five years. It's been increasing excitingly with more and more activities in both Europe and North America.
Gangspil goes to the movie: https://youtu.be/G3AnE_22RM0
Gangspil live in the studio https://youtu.be/f8LX4oL6LxI
Gangspil have toured intensively and played more than 100 shows in North America since 2015! - as well as a good number in other parts of the world. The group has become a well-known name in trad- and folk circles both home in Scandinavia and abroad. In 2016 Gangspil received the "Tradition Award" at the Danish Music Awards (Danish Grammy). We are delighted and proud of that, it has been great to play for all of you!
Sonnich & Kristian will guarantee you an entertaining and variated journey through the traditions of Danish folk music. This lively group performs old rare dance tunes and songs from every corner of their Scandinavian home country. From rural islands like Læsø and Fanø to metropols like Copenhagen, including a few of their own compositions. Expect everything from wild polkas and jigs to lyrical waltzes, fiery reels and happy hopsas, plus the exotic “Sønderhoning” dance tunes from the famous Island of Fanø. “- an unforgettable live experience spiced up with humor and stories from their many years on the road..”
Telephone -(360) 701-4931
Email - firstname.lastname@example.org
Kristian - Website
Gangspil - Website
HRH CROWN PRINCE FREDERIK INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS AWARDS
HRH Crown Prince Frederik International Business Awards is awarded to individuals or companies abroad who present an outstanding effort in promoting sustainable Danish products, services and values worldwide.
The award is presented within three different categories. The award can be presented to persons, agents, distributors, subsidiaries or companies based abroad.
More Info and Nomination Form
A ROYAL BIRTHDAY - HRH THE CROWN PRINCE
Frederik André Henrik Christian, Prince of Denmark, Crown Prince, Count of Monpezat, was born on 26 May 1968. The Crown Prince is the son of HM Queen Margrethe II and Prince Henrik of Denmark (d. 2018). He is in line to succeed to the throne and is the regent when HM The Queen is out of the country.
Photo by Franne Voigt
Christening and confirmation
The Crown Prince was christened in Holmens Kirke (the naval church) in Copenhagen on 24 June 1968 and was confirmed in Fredensborg Palace Chapel on 28 May 1981.
On 14 May 2004, HRH The Crown Prince married Miss Mary Elizabeth Donaldson, who in connection with the marriage became HRH Crown Princess Mary Elizabeth of Denmark. The wedding ceremony took place in Copenhagen Cathedral, and the wedding festivities were held at Fredensborg Palace.
HRH Prince Christian Valdemar Henri Jean, born on 15 October 2005, HRH Princess Isabella Henrietta Ingrid Margrethe, born on 21 April 2007, HRH Prince Vincent Frederik Minik Alexander and HRH Princess Josephine Sophia Ivalo Mathilda, twins born on 8 January 2011.
The Crown Prince attended Krebs' Skole during the years 1974-1981, from 1974-1976 as a private pupil at Amalienborg Palace and at Krebs' Skole from the third grade. In the period 1982-1983, the Crown Prince was a boarder at École des Roches in Normandy, France.
In 1986, Crown Prince Frederik graduated from the upper secondary school of Øregaard Gymnasium, and in 1995, he graduated from the University of Aarhus with a MSc (political science). In connection with these studies, Crown Prince Frederik studied political science at Harvard University, USA from 1992 to 1993.
June 4th Dinner & Golf Event, Rungsted Golf Club
June 22nd Annual General Meeting
September 4th 100 Years Anniversary Gala Dinner
November 25th Thanksgiving Luncheon
Welcome to the American Club in Copenhagen!
The American Club in Copenhagen is one of the oldest American friendship clubs in the world, and has been fostering trans-Atlantic friendships and relations for more than 75 years.
The American Club in Copenhagen cultivates business, professional, social and cultural relationships among Americans, Danes and other members of the international community in Denmark.
The Club enjoys a current membership of around 400, representing a wide range of businesses, all with a common interest in the United States. The Club supports charitable activities as well as academic scholarships. The official language of the Club is English.
For further information please check the rest of our website. Should you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
We would be very pleased to welcome you as a member in The American Club in Copenhagen!
The American Club
Strandvejen 203 - 2900 Hellerup
Phone: 3961 7375
Email - email@example.com
GRUNDLOVSDAG (CONSTITUTION DAY)
The throne of Denmark was established in the tenth century and is the oldest in Europe and third oldest in the world. Through to the seventeenth century, the majority of decisions in Danish rule came through the monarchy and each monarch was obliged to sign the Haandfæstning wherein he promised to rule fairly.
In 1660, Denmark became a constitutional monarchy, effectively removed the monarchy from absolute power and putting decision making into the hands of the leaders of government. From this time, aside from the royal power of the king, three types of powers existed in Denmark: legislative, executive and judicial.
Including the signing of the first constitution, five constitutions have been written and signed: 1849, 1866, 1915, 1920 and 1953. None of these had amendments but each was superseded by the one following. On 5 June 1915, women received the right to vote.
Many places hold festivals on Constitution Day and there are often political rallies. Students, graduates, bands and organisations march in parades behind the bright red and white of the Danish flag. The flag also dominates many buildings across the country.
A ROYAL BIRTHDAY - PRINCE JOACHIM
HRH Prince JoachimPhoto by Kamilla Bryndum
Joachim Holger Waldemar Christian, Prince of Denmark, Count of Monpezat, was born on 7 June 1969. His Royal Highness Prince Joachim is the son of HM Queen Margrethe II and Prince Henrik of Denmark (d. 2018). He is included in the order of succession to the Throne and may act as Regent when HM The Queen and HRH Crown Prince Frederik are abroad
On 24 May 2008, HRH Prince Joachim married Miss Marie Agathe Odile Cavallier, whoin connection with the marriage became HRH Princess Marie of Denmark, Countess of Monpezat.
HH Prince Nikolai William Alexander Frederik, born on 28 August 1999, HH Prince Felix Henrik Valdemar Christian, born on 22 July 2002, HH Prince Henrik Carl Joachim Alain, born on 4 May 2009, and HH Princess Athena Marguerite Françoise Marie born on 24 January 2012.
Prince Joachim shares custody of Prince Felix with Prince Felix' mother, Alexandra Christina, Countess of Frederiksborg, who was formerly married to Prince Joachim.
Prince Joachim was christened in the Århus Cathedral on 15 July 1969 and confirmed in the Chapel of Fredensborg Castle on 10 June 1982.
A ROYAL BIRTHDAY -
HRH PRINCE HENRIK (1934-2018)
Prince Henrik was born on 11 June 1934 in Talence, Gironde, France. He was the son of Count André de Laborde de Monpezat (d. 1998) and Countess Renée de Monpezat, née Doursennot (d. 2002). Prince Henrik passed away on 13 February 2018.
Photo: Torben Eskerod
On 10 June 1967, the Heir Apparent to the Danish throne, Princess Margrethe, married Henri Marie Jean André Count de Laborde de Monpezat, who in connection with the marriage became HRH Prince Henrik of Denmark. The wedding ceremony took place in Holmens Kirke (the naval church) and the wedding festivities were held at Fredensborg Palace.
HRH Crown Prince Frederik André Henrik Christian, born on 26 May 1968 HRH Prince Joachim Holger Waldemar Christian, born on 7 June 1969.
HRH Prince Henrik spent his first five years in Vietnam, then known as French Indo-China,where his father was in charge of family interests in industrial enterprises, etc. founded by his grandfather at the turn of the century. In 1939, the family returned to the family residence, le Cayrou, in Cahors. Having received instruction at home until 1947, Prince Henrik subsequently studied at the Jesuit boarding school in Bordeaux. In the period 1948-1950, HRH Prince Henrik attended upper secondary school in Cahors. His Royal Highness returned to Hanoi in 1950 and graduated from the French upper secondary school in Hanoi in 1952. In the period 1952- 1957, Prince Henrik studied law and political science at the Sorbonne, Paris, while simultaneously studying Chinese and Vietnamese at École Nationale des Langues Orientales. Having studied Oriental languages in Hong Kong in 1957, Prince Henrik subsequently studied in Saigon in 1958.
HRH Prince Henrik performed his military service with the infantry in Algeria in the period 1959-1962. His Royal Highness held the honorary rank of General and Admiral in the Danish Defence.
Prince Henrik had a background in the diplomatic service. In 1962, His Royal Highness worked within the Asia Department of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and from 1963 to 1967, he was a Secretary to the French Embassy in London.
The mother tongue of HRH Prince Henrik is French, but he quickly learned Danish after moving to Denmark. In addition, His Royal Highness spoke English, Chinese and Vietnamese.
2020 saw Denmark celebrate 100 years since Southern Jutland, once part of Germany, was reunited with the country on June 15, 1920. The aim of the 2020 Reunion was to highlight public awareness of the historic occasion, and its cultural and political significance to Danish society. The anniversary also served to underline the present-day friendship with Germany, and shine a spotlight on the European perspective of the Danish-German border region.
On June 15, 1920, the plebiscite's entire Zone I was transferred to Denmark as the Danish government formally took over the control of Southern Jutland. Pictured is an anniversary postcard that reads: "Mother Denmark greets South Jutland."
To much fanfare, the law on "The Southern Jutland areas incorporated in Denmark" was signed by King Christian X (pictured) on July 9. German passport and customs controls were officially moved from the river Kongeå to the current border.
The following day, the Danish monarch famously rode his white horse over the demarcated Kongeå frontier to be greeted by jubilant locals in what was now southern Denmark.
Reunification was not, however, without incident. In light of the results, Prime Minister Carl Theodor Zahle had determined that reunification with Northern Schleswig could go forward, while Central Schleswig would remain under German control. However, many Danish nationalists felt that Central Schleswig should be returned to Denmark regardless of the plebiscite's results.
King Christian X sided with nationalist sentiment and ordered Zahle to include Central Schleswig in the reunification process. He refused to comply and resigned several days later, after a heated exchange with the monarch. Subsequently, Christian dismissed the rest of the government and replaced it with a de facto conservative caretaker cabinet under Otto Lieb (pictured).
A GREAT DANISH AMERICAN BIRTHDAY - MAX HENIUS
Max Henius (June 16, 1859 – November 15, 1935) was a Danish-American biochemist who specialized in the fermentation processes. Max Henius co-founded the American Academy of Brewing in Chicago.
Max Henius was born in Aalborg, Denmark. His parents were Polish Jewish immigrants Emilie (née Wasserzug) and Isidor Henius. His father emigrated from Poland in 1837, and founded De Danske Spritfabrikker, a Danish Distillery which is now part of V&S Group. Isidor also built a small castle in Aalborg, now called Sohngaardsholm Slot, since 2005 a gourmet restaurant. Max Henius emigrated to the United States in 1881 at the age of 22 from Aalborg, settling in Chicago.
In Chicago, he married Danish-born Johanne Louise Heiberg, who was the sister of historian Johan Ludvig Heiberg and related to Danish author Peter Andreas Heiberg. His great-grandchildren are actors Keith Carradine, Robert Carradine, Christopher Carradine, and Michael Bowen.
Together with Robert Wahl, Henius founded an institute for chemical and mechanical analysis. Founded in 1891, the Chicago-based American Brewing Academy (later known as the Wahl-Henius Institute of Fermentology) was one of the premier brewing schools of the pre-prohibition era. This institute was later expanded with a brew master school.
At the turn of the century Max Henius began to be interested in Danish-American organizations in Chicago. Funds were being raised by Danish Americans to purchase 200 acres (0.81 km2) of heather-covered hills, located in part of Rold Forest (Danish: Rold Skov), Denmark's largest forest. In 1912 Max Henius presented the deed to H.M. King Christian X as a permanent memorial from Danish Americans. Rebild National Park (Danish:Rebild Bakker) is today a Danish national park situated near the town of Skørping in Rebild municipality, Region Nordjylland in northern Jutland, Denmark. Every July 4 since 1912, except for the two world wars, large crowds have gathered in the heather-covered hills of Rebild to celebrate American Independence Day. On the slope north of Rebild, where the residence of Max Henius was once located, a bust is placed in his memory.
Compiled by World Heritage Encyclopedia™
A Nordic tradition, celebrated on the night before the Midsummer's Day
Midsummer's Eve or Sankt Hans Aften is a relic of pagan customs, where the shortest day, the winter solstice, and the longest day, the summer solstice, were celebrated. Originally it was believed that midsummer night was filled with magical forces of nature—both bad and good. All herbs and sources were particularly sacred, and it was a tradition to seek sacred springs or picking healing herbs on this night.
The tradition of burning bonfires came later. Originally they were not associated with Midsummer's Eve celebration, although later some farmers who believed in witches started burning bonfires on this night. A shape that looks like a witch was put in the fire. The purpose of the fire was to scare the witches and evil spirits away, rather than burning them.
Today the Midsummer's Eve is still celebrated with bonfires, dancing, singing and a traditional speech from someone well known in the community. The celebrations are held all around the country, both in cities and small towns.
Some of the most vibrant celebrations take place in Copenhagen, Odense, Aarhus, and Skagen. The capital has bonfires at several places, including Tivoli Gardens, Frederiksberg Gardens, Islands Brygge, and more. Likewise, Aarhus offers quite a few locations to celebrate, such as Aarhus University campus, Godsbanen, or Langenæs Church. In Odense, the festivities take place at Engen in the Fruens Bøge forest. At last, the remote Skagen promises an exceptional celebration. Thousands come to the northern tip of Denmark to enjoy traditional songs at the bonfire that lasts here longer than anywhere else in the country.
Burning the witches in Denmark
The height of Danish summer is celebrated on the evening of June 23 under the name Sankt Hans (Saint Hans), who is known in English as John the Baptist. The festival of Sankt Hans and the celebration of the summer solstice have pagan roots and date back to the days before Christianity came to Denmark.
Sankt Hans is generally celebrated with a dinner at home with family and friends followed by a stroll to a community bonfire, often by the beach or on the shore of one of Denmark's many lakes.
Tradition calls for an effigy of a witch to be placed on top of the bonfire, and as it burns the community sings the song "Midsommervisen", written by the Danish poet Holger Drachmann in 1885. The effigy of the witch symbolises all the misery that Denmark as a nation wants to avoid, and the song celebrates the hope that peace will prevail.
Midsommervisen “Vi elsker vort land”
Vi elsker vor land,
når den signede jul
tænder stjernen i træet med glans i hvert øje.
Når om våren hver fugl,
over mark, under strand,
lader stemmen til hilsende triller sig bøje:
Vi synger din lov over vej, over gade,
vi kranser dit navn, når vor høst er i lade,
men den skønneste krans,
bli'r dog din Sankte Hans!
Den er bunden af sommerens hjerter,
så varme så glade.
Vi elsker vort land,
men ved midsommer mest,
når hver sky over marken velsignelsen sender,
når af blomster er flest,
og når kvæget i spand
giver rigeligst gave til flittige hænder;
når ikke vi pløjer og harver og tromler,
når koen sin middag i kløveren gumler,
da går ungdom til dans
på dit bud Sankte Hans
ret som føllet og lammet, der frit
over engen sig tumler.
Vi elsker vort land,
og med sværdet i hånd
skal hver udenvælts fjende beredte os kende,
men mod ufredens ånd
under mark over strand,
vil vi bålet på fædrenes gravhøje tænde
hver by har sin heks,
og hver sogn sine trolde.
Dem vil vi fra livet med glædesblus holde
vi vil fred her til lands
Sankte Hans, Sankte Hans!
Den kan vindes, hvor hjerterne
aldrig bli'r tvivlende kolde.
Vi Elsker Vort Land/"We Love Our Country"
We love our country
when the blessed Christmas
light up the star in the tree with a twinkle in each eye
When in spring each bird
over the field, down by the beach
lets its voice give into greeting trills:
We sing your law across the road, across the street,
we wreath your name, when our harvest is in the barn,
but the most beautiful wreath
becomes yours, Saint Hans
It is bound by the the hearts of the summer so warm, so happy
but the most beautiful wreath
becomes yours, Saint Hans
It is bound by the hearts of the summer so warm, so happy
We love our country
but mostly around midsummer
when every cloud sends the blessing across the field
When most flowers are here
and when the cattle drag the plough
gives plenty of gifts to laborious hands;
when we don't plough and harrow and roll,
when the cow munch its dinner of clover:
At that time youth will start to dance
at your command Saint Hans!
Straight as the foal and the lamb which freely romp across the meadow
At that time youth will start to dance
at your command Saint Hans!
Straight as the foal and the lamb which freely romp across the meadow
We love our country
and with the sword in our hands
every foreign enemy shall prepared know us
But against the spirit of strife
over the field, down by the beach
we will light the bonfire on the forefathers' burial mounds:
Every town has its witch, and every parish its trolls,
we will keep those from our lives with fires of happiness
We want peace in this country,
saint Hans, saint Hans!
It can be won where the hearts never become doubting cold
We want peace in this country,
saint Hans, saint Hans!
It can be won where the hearts never become doubting cold
We love our country
and we greet that king
who has tried and chosen the right princess:
In his fairy tale castle
every woman, every man can
find an example of love for life!
Let the times grow old, let the colors fade,
we will however draw a memory in our hearts:
From the North so rich in legends
a glory goes across the world
It is the reflection of the wonderland's enchanted meadows,
From the North so rich in legends
a glory goes across the world
It is the reflection of the wonderland's enchanted meadows!
ROSKILDE MUSIC FESTIVAL
The largest music event in Northern Europe was inspired by Woodstock
Every year the city of Roskilde in Denmark hosts one of the biggest European music festivals, attracting hundreds of thousands of music lovers from all over the world. Roskilde Festival was established in the early 1970s, inspired by music culture of this time. Since the 1990s, it has become a major event for electronic music industry.
The festival grounds include six separate stages, where you can enjoy your favourite music. Roskilde Festival lasts for eight days, featuring a great range of entertainment and activities. First four days warm up the audience, while the culmination comes from Thursday till Sunday with the most awaited and spectacular performances.
Impressive campsite which covers 80 hectares and unique traditions, like Naked Run around the camp site, create unforgettable atmosphere.
Roskilde Festival Website
REBILD FESTIVAL IN DENMARK
Celebration of Danish American Friendship - The annual Rebild Festival at the Rebild National Park near Aalborg, Denmark
Official Detailed 2021 Schedule to be Announced
The 2021 Rebild Celebration will be a combination of live and on-line events.
July 3 - Rebild Park events and Gala in Aalborg
July 4 - Tent Luncheon and Festival in the Rebild Hills
July 5 - General Membership Meeting
Rebild - Denmark
We are a Danish-American Friendship organization,
playing an important part in these areas:
Unique 4th of July Festival in Denmark with Royalty and dignitaries from both countries
Preservation of Danish culture and heritage in USA
Assistance to Danish newcomers with acclimatization and business networking
Help and insight into Danish thinking for Americans doing business with Denmark
Friend-shipping and socializing
Study abroad scholarships to Denmark
Professional full color news magazine two times a year plus Rebild E-News.
Annual Conference (each year in a different state in the US)
Ties of Friendship
It all began more than one hundred years ago in America. A gathering of Danish-Americans came up with a vision ofa special place in Denmark where they could gather once a year to meet with relatives and friends. And symbolically, as a statement conﬁrming that those who had left would not forget where they had come from. Emigration began gradually in the economically difﬁcult years following the Napoleon Wars, when the country was going bankrupt and having lost Norway. it is estimated that as many as 300,000 Danes emigrated in the years up to the First World War. Exact numbers are not possible because, after 1864, Danes from Southern Iylland were registered as German emigrants.
Their incentive to leave was the dream of ﬁnding freedom and a better life. They especially sought out the northern states in the USA, as did other emigrants from the Scandinavian countries, because the climate and land reminded them of what they had left behind. It had an especial attraction for farmers. The western part of the country offered free land, with the provision they would fence the property, cultivate the land, and by the end ofthe ﬁrst year, have erected a house with a door and window. Normally only the door and windows that were made of wood, the rest of the house was made of sod! It was hard work but worth the effort. For most, it was a good decision.
But the emigrants never forgot their homeland and early in the twentieth century they purchased land in the old country. In the beginning they ﬂocked to outdoor meetings near Himmelbjeret, as recorded by Ieppe Aakjaer on “Ienle” and Johan Skjoldborg on "Dynaes." These large outdoor gatherings are a popular tradition we have perpetuated through the years. Most of the emigrants had Iyske roots and it was instinctive for them to seek to meet here. The man with the most initiative was Max Henius from Aalborg, and the land eventually selected was the beautiful hilly heather covered ground in the outskirts of Forest of Rold — Rebild Bakker.
There were more than 10,000 participants at the ﬁrst Rebild Festival in 1912, and it was estimated that more than 1,000 came from America. Viewed through today's eyes it was impressive. It was expensive and difficult to travel so far — across America by land and the Atlantic Ocean by boat. The King Christian the 10th participated with Queen Alexandrine and accepted the deed for 140 tender land (equal to approximately 1,363 acres) with the requirement: “... that every year on July 4th, America's Independence Day, a "Rebild Festival" would be held in the Hills." Throughout the intervening years the Royal Family have been active in the Festival. We are happy and thankful for that.
We have been told that the 4th of July celebration in Denmark is the largest outside the USA. We are proud of that. It’s a wonderful tradition that has continued over the past 100 years. It is a testament to the unbreakable friendship that exists between our two nations who share a common appreciation for freedom and democracy. We stand together!
A GREAT DANISH EXPLORER OF NORTH AMERICA - VITUS BERING
Vitus Jonassen Bering (baptised 5 August 1681 - 19 December 1741), also known as Ivan Ivanovich Bering, was a Danish cartographer and explorer in Russian service, and an officer in the Russian Navy. He is known as a leader of two Russian expeditions, namely the First Kamchatka Expedition and the Great Northern Expedition, exploring the north-eastern coast of the Asian continent and from there the western coast on the North American continent. The Bering Strait, the Bering Sea, Bering Island, the Bering Glacier and the Bering Land Bridgewere all named in his honor.
Vitus Bering was born in the port town of Horsens in Denmark to Anne Pedderdatter and her husband Jonas Svendsen (a "customs inspector and churchwarden") and was baptized in the Lutheran church there on 5 August 1681. He was named after a maternal great-uncle, Vitus Pedersen Bering, who had been a chronicler in the royal court, and was not long deceased at the time of Vitus Jonassen Bering's birth. The family enjoyed reasonable financial security, with two of Vitus' elder half-brothers both attending the University of Copenhagen. Vitus however did not and instead signed on at age 15 as a ship's boy. Between 1696 and 1704, Bering travelled the seas, reaching India and the Dutch East Indies while also finding time to complete naval officer training in Amsterdam. He would also claim later (and, it seems, not without some supporting evidence) to have served on Danish whalers in the North Atlantic, visiting European colonies in the Caribbean and on the eastern seaboard of North America. It was in Amsterdam, however, that in 1704 and under the guidance of Norwegian-born Russian admiral Cornelius Cruys, Bering enlisted with the Russian navy, taking the rank of sub-lieutenant. He would be repeatedly promoted in Peter the Great's rapidly evolving navy, reaching the rank of second captain by 1720. In that time, it appears he was not involved in any sea battles, but commanded several vessels in potentially dangerous missions, including the transport of a ship from the Azov Sea on Russia's southern coast to the Baltic on her northern coast. His work in the latter stages of the Great Northern War (ending in 1721), for example, was dominated by lightering duties.
Vitus Bering's expedition is wrecked on the Aleutian Islands in 1741 (Unknown Artist)
On 8 October 1713, Bering married Anna Christina Pülse; the ceremony took place in the Lutheran church at Vyborg, only recently annexed from Sweden. Over the next 18 years, they had nine children, four of whom survived childhood. During his time with the Russian navy – particularly as part of the Great Northern War – he was unable to spend much time with Anna, who was approximately eleven years Bering's junior and the daughter of a Swedish merchant. At the war's conclusion in 1721, Bering was not promoted like many of his contemporaries. The omission proved particularly embarrassing when, in 1724, Anna's younger sister Eufemia upstaged her by marrying Thomas Saunders, already a rear-admiral despite a much shorter period of service. In order to save face, the 42-year-old Bering decided to retire from the navy, securing two months' pay and a notional promotion to first captain. Shortly after, the family – Bering, his wife Anna, and two young sons – moved out of St. Petersburg to live with Anna's family in Vyborg. After a period of joblessness lasting five months, however, Bering (keenly aware of his dependents), decided to reapply to the Admiralty. He was accepted for a renewed period of active service the same day. By 2 October 1724, Bering (retaining the rank of first captain he had secured earlier in the year) was back on the sea, commanding the ninety-gun Lesnoe. The Tsar would soon have a new command for him, however.
Taking to the seas at the age of 18, Bering travelled extensively over the next eight years, as well as taking naval training in Amsterdam. In 1704, he enrolled with the rapidly expanding Russian navy of Tsar Peter I (Peter the Great). After serving with the navy in significant but non-combat roles during the Great Northern War, Bering resigned in 1724 to avoid the continuing embarrassment of his low rank to Anna, his wife of eleven years; and upon retirement was promoted to First Captain. Bering was permitted to keep the rank as he rejoined the Russian navy later the same year.
He was selected by the Tsar to captain the First Kamchatka Expedition, an expedition set to sail north from Russian outposts on the Kamchatka peninsula, with the charge to map the new areas visited and to establish whether Asia and America shared a land border. Bering departed from St. Petersburg in February 1725 as the head of a 34-man expedition, aided by the expertise of Lieutenants Martin Spangberg and Aleksei Chirikov. The party took on men as it headed towards Okhotsk, encountering many difficulties (most notably a lack of food) before arriving at the settlement. From there, the men sailed to the Kamchatka peninsula, preparing new ships there and sailing north (repeating a little-documented journey of Semyon Dezhnyov eighty years previously). In August 1728, Bering decided that they had sufficient evidence that there was clear sea between Asia and America, which he did not sight during the trip. For the first expedition, Bering was rewarded with money, prestige, and a promotion to the noble rank of Captain Commander. He immediately started preparations for a second trip.
Having returned to Okhotsk with a much larger, better prepared, and much more ambitious expedition, Bering set off for an expedition towards North America in 1741. While doing so, the expedition spotted Mount Saint Elias, and sailed past Kodiak Island. A storm separated the ships, but Bering sighted the southern coast of Alaska, and a landing was made at Kayak Island or in the vicinity. Adverse conditions forced Bering to return, but he documented some of the Aleutian Islands on his way back. One of the sailors died and was buried on one of these islands, and Bering named the island group Shumagin Islands after him. Bering himself became too ill to command his ship, which was at last driven to seek refuge on an uninhabited island in the Commander Islands group (Komandorskiye Ostrova) in the southwest Bering Sea. On 19 December 1741 Vitus Bering died on the island, which was given the name Bering Island after him, near the Kamchatka Peninsula, reportedly from scurvy (although this has been contested), along with 28 men of his company. - Wikipedia
THIS DATE IN DANISH AMERICAN HISTORY - THINGVALLA/GEISER SHIPWRECK
In the early morning hours of August 14, 1888, 105 lives were lost when two ships of the Danish owned Thingvalla Lines collided about 40 miles off Sable Island, east of Halifax, Nova Scotia. The SS Geiser sunk within minutes, and the SS Thingvalla, badly damaged, limped into port carrying survivors.
Read More Here
FLAG-FLYING DAY FOR DENMARK'S DEPLOYED PERSONNEL
5th September is the official flag-flying day for Denmark’s deployed personnel. The flag-flying day was celebrated for the first time in 2009.
The aim of the flag-flying day is to honour persons, that is or have been deployed on mission for Denmark, based on a decision made by the government, the parliament (Folketinget) or a minister. The Flag-flying day embraces the same group of personnel as the national monument for Denmark’s international effort since 1948.
The flag-flying day is an occasion to express acknowledgement of the outstanding and professional effort, that Denmark’s deployed personnel, have made and make today in a number of the world’s conflict areas.
Memorial service and parade
BODTKER GRANTS - DEADLINE
Deadlines for Submission: April 15 and September 15
The Danish American Heritage Society is pleased to offer grants to qualified researchers for study in area of common interest. Bodtker Grants provide stipends of up to $5,000 for students or graduates interested in exploring topics related to Danish history and heritage in North America.
A Bodtker Grant is primarily intended for research and internship at Danish American Archive and Library in Blair, Nebraska; the Danish American Archive at Grand View University in Des Moines, Iowa; or the Museum of Danish America in Elk Horn, Iowa. At the Board's discretion, proposals involving other Danish cultural and archival institutions may be considered.
Deadlines: April 15 (Notification: May) or September 15(Notification: October)
Stipend Amount: Up to $5,000
THIS DAY IN DANISH AMERICAN HISTORY - THE FIREBURN REBELLION
Even after the abolition of slavery in 1848 in the Danish West Indies, conditions for the newly freed were difficult. The Emancipation Revolt of 1848 ended slavery but inaugurated a 30-year period of serfdom based on contract labor that ensured continuing control by plantation owners. Frustration and unrest spilled over in the labor force into a violent rebellion which started on October 1, 1878 (Contract Day) in Frederiksted. Houses, warehouses, and plantations were burned, along with over half of the city of Frederiksted. This revolt became known as Fireburn or the Great Trashing. Three (some believe four or even five) women, Mary, Agnes, and Mathilda, were especially active in the rebellion. Today, they are considered heroines in the islands and called Queens of Fireburn.
More from the St. Croix Friends of Denmark -
St Croix History
A ROYAL BIRTHDAY - HRH PRINCE CHRISTIAN
Christian Valdemar Henri John, Prince of Denmark, Count of Monpezat, was born on 15 October 2005 at Rigshospitalet (Copenhagen University Hospital). Prince Christian is the son of TRH the Crown Prince and the Crown Princess. Photo: Franne Voigt - 2020
2021 REBILD ANNUAL USA CONFERENCE
The Arizona Rebild Annual Conference, originally scheduled for last spring, has been rescheduled for October 2021. The new dates have the Pre-tour to the Grand Canyon and Sedona October 24-27, the Conference at the Tempe Embassy Suites October 27-30, and the Post-Tour to Tombstone and Tucson October 31-November 3.
Everyone interested in Danish American friendship is welcome!
“We were very disappointed that we had to cancel the conference last spring due to COVID-19”, said Rebild U.S. Vice President Bruce Bro, but we are excited to reschedule for October 2021. Late October and early November is an equally beautiful time of year in Arizona, and we know everyone will enjoy the weather and the entertaining program”.
The program is essentially the same as was planned for last March. The Pre-Tour includes a welcome dinner at the Tempe Embassy Suites on October 24, followed by the Ranchos de los Cabelleros in Wickenburg with a cowboy barbecue and entertainment, an afternoon at the Grand Canyon, and finishing with a night and morning in beautiful Sedona.
The conference runs October 27-30 with a welcome dinner the first night, filled by a Desert Botanical Gardens tour and Smørrebrødfest, a tour of the Scottsdale Museum of the West on October 29 along with dinner and a Bull Riding show at the Buffalo Chip Saloon, and finally a tour of the Heard Museum and the Gala Dinner on Saturday night October 30. Rebild leadership and board meetings will be conducted the mornings of the conference with the Rebild General Membership meeting on Saturday morning October 31.
One addition to the events not offered in March will be a tour of the Niels Petersen House Museum in Tempe. Petersen, a Danish Immigrant in the 1800’s was a rancher and a founding father of the town of Tempe. He built a beautiful Victorian style house near Tempe in the late 1800’s, which is now a museum. The house offers a glimpse of the life of Niels and Susanna Petersen during that time period.
The Post-Tour will depart Tempe Sunday morning October 31 and travel to Tombstone and “The Gunfight at the OK Corral”. On Monday November 1 the tour group will explore the incredible Kartchner Caverns followed by an evening banquet and entertainment in Tucson. Tuesday morning November 2 includes a tour of Tucson’s Sonoran Desert Museum and then back to Tempe for a farewell dinner. Departures for home will be the next day, Wednesday November 3.
“We once again welcome all Rebild Members to Arizona”, added Bro. “But we also extend a welcome to non-members to join us and learn about Rebild - the Danish American Friendship Society”.
Hotel Information: Hotel IS included for Pre and Post tours. Your Hotel room during the conference is NOT included in your registration (Oct 27-31). To reserve your room, call the hotel at the number on the registration form.
Rebild Arizona 2021 ScheduleUpdated 2/14/2021
Sunday October 24 - Pre-Tour Welcome Dinner at Tempe Embassy Suites
Overnight at Tempe Embassy Suites
Monday October 25 - Pre-Tour Ranchos de los Caballeros
Overnight at Caballeros
Tuesday October 26 - Grand Canyon/Sedona
Overnight at Hampton Inn, Sedona
Annual Conference Schedule -
Wednesday October 27 - Conference Arrival at Tempe Embassy Suites
Reception and Welcome Dinner
Thursday October 28 - Chapter Presidents/Rebild Board Meetings
Desert Botanical Gardens/Smørrebrødfest
Friday October 29 - Combined Presidents/Board MeetingPetersen House Museum tour
Museum of the West/Buffalo Chip Saloon
Saturday October 30 - General Membership Meeting
Heard Museum/Gala Dinner
Sunday October 31 - Conference Departures
Sunday October 31 - Morning Departures to Tombstone
Gunfight at the OK Corall
Overnight in Tombstone
Monday November 1 - Kartchner Caverns/Tucson Dinner
Overnight at Tucson Embassy Suites
Tuesday November 2 - Sonoran Desert Museum
Return to Tempe & Farewell Dinner
Overnight at Tempe Embassy Suites
Wednesday November 3 - Post Tour Departures
More Information and questions -
Email - Bruce Bro
Autumn Images from Tivoli
(Photos by NFDA Officer Katrine Vange)
Halloween, contraction of All Hallows’ Eve, a holiday observed on October 31, the evening before All Saints’ (or All Hallows’) Day. The celebration marks the day before the Western Christian feast of All Saints and initiates the season of Allhallowtide, which lasts three days and concludes with All Souls’ Day. In much of Europe and most of North America, observance of Halloween is largely nonreligious. - Britannica
Pumpkins and ghosts have captured the imagination of Danish kids, leaving the barrel-smashing, cat-liberating February fancy dress fest of Fastelavn behind.
Although Halloween is generally considered a tradition with American origins, it’s actually European, and is thought to have its roots in Celtic customs up to 2,000 years old.
In Ireland, offers were made to Celtic gods and the dead, and scary-looking lamps were carved out of beets – setting the tradition for today’s pumpkins.
Conversion to Christianity later saw the Celtic tradition combined with All Saints Day – the result was Hallow’s Evening or Hallowe’en.
The tradition was largely imported to the United States by Irish immigrants in the 19thcentury.
Although Halloween is one of the biggest annual celebrations in the US, it has been slow to catch on in many European countries which celebrate All Saints Day – or in the case of the United Kingdom, Guy Fawkes’ Night – at the same time of year.
That has also been the case in Denmark. Although the country does not have a tradition for celebrating All Saints Day due to the predominance of the Lutheran Church of Denmark, kids have traditionally had the chance to dress up and win sweet-tasting treats in February, during Fastelavn.
As such,Halloween did not really register in Denmark until around the turn of the century.
In 1999, toy store chain Fætter BR began selling Halloween costumes, contemporary reports from broadcaster DR show.
Almost half of all families with children in Denmark now buy sweets or candy at Halloween, according to DR.
That has given a boost to the country’s pumpkin farmers, who have seen sales double over the last ten years.
"Trick or treat" has now been rendered as the somewhat clunky, and no less aggressive, ‘slik eller trylleri, ellers er dit liv forbi’ (‘candy or magic, or your life is over!) and can be heard on Danish doorsteps on October 31st.
More people in Denmark now purchase fancy dress costumes for Halloween than they do for Fastelavn, according to sales figures from supermarket company Coop reported by DR.
Coop's sales of fancy dress costumes for Fastelavn have been on a downward curve at since 2011, and were overtaken by sales for Halloween in 2007.
Last year saw Coop sell three times as many costumes for Halloween compared to Fastelavn, DR reports.
General enthusiasm for and pervasion of American culture in Denmark are no small part of the explanation for the trend, according to DR, which notes that Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day have also been successfully transplanted into the Danish calendar.
Halloween’s timing also benefits stores, which can sell items for the day at a time of the year when a lack of other events makes it ideal for promotion. - From "The Local" DK
J-DAY IN DENMARK
The annual launch in Denmark, known as 'J-day', takes place the first Friday in November and is a day of celebration across Denmark. Carlsberg employees drive around in truck to visit bars and cafés while singing the traditional Tuborg Christmas Brew song and handing out free beer to the guests to mark the start of the festive season.
Mortensaften: Denmark's Goose-eating Annual Tradition Explained
By - Agustin Millan
Saint Martin's Day is celebrated each November 11th in a long line of countries, mostly as a harvest festival. In Denmark, the day is not an official holiday but many older generations still mark the occasion with a dinner of goose or duck on the preceding evening, known as Mortensaften (St. Martin's Eve).
Denmark's celebration of Mortensaften is in honour of Saint Martin of Tours, a Roman soldier born around the year 316 who deserted the Roman army due to his Christian faith and established the first monastery in Gaul. He was later canonized as a Christian saint.
Known as Sankt Morten or Morten Bisp in Danish, St. Martin is said to have resisted his impending election as bishop by hiding in a geese pin. The honk of the birds eventually revealed his location and forced him to take the bishop’s office. Because the geese had revealed him, he asked the townspeople to slaughter a goose once a year and eat it as a form of revenge.
In Denmark, the traditional Mortensaften dinner has been celebrated for centuries. The first documents of the celebration in Denmark are from 1616 but it is believed that since the Middle Ages people ate goose and duck as an offering to the saint.
Eventually, the goose came to be replaced on Danes' dinner tables by other poultry, particularly duck. Today, the tradition hangs by a thin thread.
“I don’t think it’s a big deal. It is not an official holiday but it’s sometimes an excuse to have a good meal, mostly with your family," Copenhagen resident Frank Hansen told The Local.
“My grandparents used to invite the family over to eat goose or duck. But I guess now it is regarded as a tradition only by older people," Julie Ravn said.
While the traditional meal has nearly died out, one clear remnant of Saint Martin remains in Denmark. Both Martin and the Danish variation Morten remain incredibly popular names amongst Danish men. There are currently 37,151 Martins and 34,092 Mortens in Denmark, which ranks both names among the 15 most popular in the country.
DANISH PRIME MINISTER METTE FREDERIKSEN - BIRTHDAY
Mette Frederiksen (born 19 November 1977) is a Danish politician who has been Prime Minister of Denmark since June 2019 and Leader of the Social Democrats since June 2015. The second woman to hold either office, she is also the youngest Prime Minister in Danish history. After a career as a trade unionist, Frederiksen was first elected to the Folketing in the 2001 general election, representing Copenhagen County. After the Social Democrats won the 2011 general election, she was appointed Minister of Employment by Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt. She was later promoted to become Minister of Justice in 2014. After the Social Democrats' narrow defeat in the 2015 general election, Thorning-Schmidt stood down and Frederiksen won the subsequent leadership election to replace her, becoming Leader of the Opposition. Frederiksen led her party into the 2019 general election which resulted in the bloc of left-wing and centre-left parties (her Social Democrats, the Social Liberals, the Socialist People's Party, the Red–Green Alliance, the Faroese Social Democratic Party and Greenland's Siumut and Inuit Ataqatigiit) winning a majority in the Folketing. Frederiksen was subsequently commissioned by Queen Margrethe II to lead ultimately successful negotiations to form a new government and was sworn in as Prime Minister on 27 June. - News Break
Danish Government Prime Minister Website
Mette Frederiksen Facebook
This tradition actually comes from southern Sweden, but has been happily embraced and adopted by children in Denmark.
The festival celebrates a martyr, Sancta Lucia, and features a stunning procession of girls dressed in white carrying candles in their hands. The procession is accompanied by the Lucia song, and headed by the Lucia Queen, who wears a crown of candles on her head.
St. Lucia’s Day is a fusion of several traditions. A variant is that Lucia distributed food to the beggars in time for the New Year’s fast, which started on the 13th of December in what was then Catholic Sweden. Lucia had to bear the candles on her head because she needed to use both hands to carry the food.
The festival is celebrated through numerous candle walks, but the best of them must be the lighted kayaks procession along the Nyhavn canal
Every year on December 13, as soon as the night gloom sets in, hundreds of brightly-lighted kayaks appear on the surface of the Nyhavn canal. Kayakers, typically wearing Santa's hats, float peacefully along the waterway chanting about Saint Lucia. This is the highlight of Saint Lucia Day celebration in Copenhagen, designed to commemorate the 3d century saint from Sicily. The festival is popular among a range of Scandinavian countries. It first originated in Sweden in 1927 and was borrowed by the Danes in 1944.
One of the numerous legends about Saint Lucia says she used to feed the poor during the Lent that started precisely on December 13. She had to carry candles on her head for she needed both of her hands to feed the hungry. That explains other widely popular processions that take place during the festive day. Girls dressed in the white walk with candles in their hands and sing the Lucia song. They are always led by the Lucia Queen, whose main attribute is a crown made of candles.
Lights and fires bear symbolic meaning. When St Lucia devoted herself to God, she was determined to preserve her virginity. Nobody, including executives, could break her, so she was sentenced to be burnt. By a kind of miracle, the fire couldn't hurt her, and at last, she was beheaded with a sword. In present-day celebration, miraculous fires bring light, hope, and strength to people for the darkest and coldest months in a year. -
TYCHO BRAHE - BIRTHDAY
Tycho Brahe (born Tyge Ottesen Brahe; 14 December 1546 – 24 October 1601) was a Danish nobleman, astronomer, and writer known for his accurate and comprehensive astronomical observations. He was born in the then Danish peninsula of Scania (now Sweden). Tycho was well known in his lifetime as an astronomer, astrologer, and alchemist. He has been described as "the first competent mind in modern astronomy to feel ardently the passion for exact empirical facts". Most of his observations were more accurate than the best available observations at the time.
Image: 1586 portrait of Tycho Brahe framed by the family shields of his noble ancestors, by Jacques de Gheyn.
Tycho Brahe was born as heir to several of Denmark's most influential noble families and in addition to his immediate ancestry with the Brahe and the Bille families, he also counted the Rud, Trolle, Ulfstand, and Rosenkrantz families among his ancestors. Both of his grandfathers and all of his great grandfathers had served as members of the Danish king's Privy Council. His paternal grandfather and namesake Thyge Brahe was the lord of Tosterup Castle in Scania and died in battle during the 1523 Siege of Malmö during the Lutheran Reformation Wars. His maternal grandfather Claus Bille, lord to Bohus Castle and a second cousin of Swedish king Gustav Vasa, participated in the Stockholm Bloodbath on the side of the Danish king against the Swedish nobles. Tycho's father Otte Brahe, a royal Privy Councilor (like his own father), married Beate Bille, who was herself a powerful figure at the Danish court holding several royal land titles. Both parents are buried under the floor of Kågeröd Church, four kilometres east of Knutstorp.
An heir to several of Denmark's principal noble families, Tycho received a comprehensive education. He took an interest in astronomy and in the creation of more accurate instruments of measurement. As an astronomer, Tycho worked to combine what he saw as the geometrical benefits of the Copernican system with the philosophical benefits of the Ptolemaic system into his own model of the universe, the Tychonic system. His system correctly saw the Moon as orbiting Earth, and the planets as orbiting the Sun, but erroneously considered the Sun to be orbiting the Earth. Furthermore, he was the last of the major naked-eye astronomers, working without telescopes for his observations. In his De nova stella (On the New Star) of 1573, he refuted the Aristotelian belief in an unchanging celestial realm. His precise measurements indicated that "new stars" (stellae novae, now known as supernovae), in particular that of 1572, lacked the parallax expected in sublunar phenomena and were therefore not tailless comets in the atmosphere as previously believed but were above the atmosphere and beyond the Moon. Using similar measurements, he showed that comets were also not atmospheric phenomena, as previously thought, and must pass through the supposedly immutable celestial spheres.
King Frederick II granted Tycho an estate on the island of Hven and the funding to build Uraniborg, an early research institute, where he built large astronomical instruments and took many careful measurements, and later Stjerneborg, underground, when he discovered that his instruments in Uraniborg were not sufficiently steady. On the island (where he behaved autocratically toward the residents) he founded manufactories, such as a paper mill, to provide material for printing his results. After disagreements with the new Danish king, Christian IV, in 1597, Tycho went into exile. He was invited by the Bohemian king and Holy Roman Emperor Rudolph II to Prague, where he became the official imperial astronomer. He built an observatory at Benátky nad Jizerou. There, from 1600 until his death in 1601, he was assisted by Johannes Kepler, who later used Tycho's astronomical data to develop his three laws of planetary motion. - Wikipedia
Can you believe that tonight is the night before the night?! The anticipation is growing! If you didn’t already know, today is Lille Juleaften, Little Christmas Eve, as our Scandinavian friends know it. This is when things really ramp up on the holiday front! However, if you’ve read previous posts like this one you can see the Danes actually got started weeks ago!
Leave it to the Danes to start the celebrating a day early, and Lille Juleaften is filled with just about as much enthusiasm as Christmas Eve is here in America. Whereas here in the states children may have been off from school all week, in Denmark winter break usually starts today. Also, unlike here in America, most butikkerne (shops) and businesses close for the holiday this evening so that everyone can enjoy a wonderful holiday together.
Julenissen (Norwegian), Father Christmas, Père Noël (French), Weihnachtsmann (German), Joulupukki (Finnish), jólasveinn (Icelandic), jultomten (Swedish), Santa Claus. Yes, no matter how you say it, the spirit of the season is in full effect!
Speaking of, Danish researcher Anders Hougaard, a senior scientist at the Neurological Clinic at Rigshospitalet hospital in Denmark, wanted to know if the Christmas spirit holds a special place in the brain. His small study was implemented by showing participants ‘Christmassy’ and ‘non-Christmassy’ pictures, and although his hypothesis was inconclusive he did determine that specific areas of the brain do light up when people are shown pictures of their holidays. If you ask me, that’s proof enough!
Whether you are in Denmark, America, or anywhere in between, the next three days are filled with love, laughter, generosity and joy. Yes, it is a time for presents, but, even more so it is a time for presence. Because what are the holidays without spending time with the ones we love? Now that is the true meaning of the holiday spirit.
So as you sit by the light of your juletræ (Christmas tree) enjoying a nice warm mug of gløgg or julebryg, as you relish the last bits of your delicious helping of ris a la mande and hope for the mandelgave (almond prize), and as you watch the faces of those you love opening their julegaver (Christmas gifs), then afterwards sing julesange (carols) I hope you will take a little moment to cherish the spirit in which we believe on this Lille Juleaften, Little Christmas Eve.
The Danish Home - Chicago
THIS DATE IN DANISH AMERICAN HISTORY - ØRSTED (OERSTED) MEDAL FOR PHYSICS
The Oersted Medal is named for Hans Christian Ørsted (1777-1851), a Danish physicist who, in the course of creating a demonstration for teaching his class, discovered that electric currents cause a magnetic field. This was a crucial step in establishing the theory of electromagnetism so important in building modern technology and modern physics. The award was established by AAPT (American Association of Physics Teachers) in December 1936 and is given annually to a person who has had outstanding, widespread, and lasting impact on the teaching of physics. Some previous Oersted award winners are John Winston Belcher, Karl Mamola, Dean Zollman, George F. Smoot, Mildred S. Dresselhaus, Carl Wieman, Lillian McDermott, Hans Bethe, Carl E. Sagan, Edward Purcell, and Richard Feynman.
At the December 1934 meeting in Pittsburgh, an anonymous donor offered to finance for a period of three years an annual award (a medal and a certificate) for notable contributions to the teaching of physics. To take advantage of this offer, a committee composed of Thomas Cope (University of Pennsylvania), Homer Dodge, and David W. Cornelius (University of Chattanooga), was appointed to study the proposal and make recommendations the following year. This form of recognition was to become the Oersted Medal; the donor was later revealed to be Paul Klopsteg. The idea of naming the award for Oersted came from Frederic Palmer. Permission was granted by the Danish Royal Society, but considerable time was required for the design and preparation of the medal.
The first award, announced at the annual meeting in late December 1936, was given posthumously to William S. Franklin (1867-1930). Franklin was described as a man of exuberant energy “who boasted that the teaching of physics was the greatest fun in the world.” He was known for his “frequent keen and clarifying comments” on papers presented at Physical Society meetings, and he wrote prolifically—25 volumes of textbooks, numerous research papers, many contributions on “Recent Advances in Physics” in School Science and Mathematics, and a popular volume of educational essays dealing with the beauties of nature. Much of his career had been spent at Lehigh University and MIT, and the Association placed bronze memorial tablets in the physics laboratories of both those institutions. His death had come in June 1930, the result of an automobile accident; otherwise, he surely would have taken a prominent role in the organization of AAPT.
Historical work on Oersted was carried out by J. Rud Nielsen; his article on the subject appeared in the American Journal of Physics 7, 10 (1939). President Richtmyer was able to report to the AAPT Executive Committee at the end of 1938 that for the medal designed by Dieges and Clust, “the motif suggested by F. Palmer, Jr., viz: Oersted, scientist and teacher, discovering electromagnetism in the presence of his assembled pupils, has been developed into one face. Thanks to the assistance rendered by J. Rud Nielsen, the scene is believed to be highly authentic.” The 1937 medal was accepted by the daughter of E.H. Hall. A. Wilmer Duff was the recipient of the 1938 award. The Oersted presentation was first made during an AAPT business meeting, not as part of a joint ceremonial session.
Hans Christian Ørsted often rendered Oersted in English; 14 August 1777 – 9 March 1851) was a Danish physicist and chemist who discovered that electric currents create magnetic fields, which was the first connection found between electricity and magnetism. Oersted's law and the oersted (Oe) are named after him.
Discovery of Aluminum -
Aluminium was named after alum, which is called 'alumen' in Latin. This name was given by Humphry Davy, an English chemist, who, in 1808, discovered that aluminium could be produced by electrolytic reduction from alumina (aluminium oxide), but did not manage to prove the theory in practice.
Hans Christian Ørsted from Denmark was successful in 1825; however he apparently produced an aluminium alloy with the elements used in the experiments, rather than pure aluminium.
Hans Christian Oersted
1777 — 1851
Hans Christian Oersted from Denmark was successful in 1825; however he apparently produced an aluminium alloy with the elements used in the experiments, rather than pure aluminium.
Hans Christian's work was continued by Friedrich Woehler, a German chemist, who set about working from 30 grams of aluminium powder in October 22, 1827. It took another 18 years of continuous experimentation for Friedrich to create small balls of solidified molten aluminium (globules) in 1845.
A leader of the Danish Golden Age, Ørsted was a close friend of Hans Christian Andersen and the brother of politician and jurist Anders Sandøe Ørsted, who served as Prime Minister of Denmarkfrom 1853 to 1854.
Ørsted was born in Rudkøbing in 1777. As a young boy he developed an interest in science while working for his father, who owned the local pharmacy. He and his brother Anders received most of their early education through self-study at home, going to Copenhagen in 1793 to take entrance exams for the University of Copenhagen, where both brothers excelled academically. By 1796, Ørsted had been awarded honors for his papers in both aesthetics and physics. He earned his doctorate in 1799 for a dissertation based on the works of Kant entitled The Architectonics of Natural Metaphysics.
In 1800, Alessandro Volta reported his invention of the voltaic pile, which inspired Ørsted to investigate the nature of electricity and to conduct his first electrical experiments. In 1801, Ørsted received a travel scholarship and public grant which enabled him to spend three years traveling across Europe. He toured science headquarters throughout the continent, including in Berlin and Paris.
In Germany Ørsted met Johann Wilhelm Ritter, a physicist who believed there was a connection between electricity and magnetism. This idea made sense to Ørsted as he subscribed to Kantian thought regarding the unity of nature. Ørsted's conversations with Ritter drew him into the study of physics. He became a professor at the University of Copenhagenin 1806 and continued research on electric currents and acoustics. Under his guidance the university developed a comprehensive physics and chemistry program and established new laboratories.
Ørsted welcomed William Christopher Zeise to his family home in autumn 1806. He granted Zeise a position as his lecturing assistant and took the young chemist under his tutelage. In 1812, Ørsted again visited Germany and France after publishing Videnskaben om Naturens Almindelige Love and Første Indledning til den Almindelige Naturlære (1811).
Ørsted was the first modern thinker to explicitly describe and name the thought experiment. He used the Latin-German term Gedankenexperiment circa 1812 and the German term Gedankenversuch in 1820.
Ørsted died in Copenhagen in 1851, aged 73, and was buried in the Assistens Cemetery. - Wikipedia
New Year’s Eve rituals exist in many parts of the world and Denmark is no different. Here’s a short guide to understanding some of the best-known traditions.
The Queen Margrethe’s New Year’s Eve speech at 6pm signals the beginning of a long and festive night. It’s a live broadcast from the Queen’s office in Christian IX’s Palace at Amalienborg, an annual essential that first started with King Christian IX in the 1880s. The Queen takes this opportunity to summarize the year’s main political events, both global and local. The speech always concludes with a salute to the nation with the words “Gud bevare Danmark” (God preserve Denmark), which signals the time to begin the meal.
Unlike the Christmas dishes consumed just a few days prior, the New Year’s Eve menu consists of boiled cod, served with home-made mustard sauce and all the trimmings. However, Danes are less traditionally bound to the food when it comes to New Year. So, many Danes prepare exotic and alternative specialities for their New Year’s dinner.
For dessert, the famous Kransekake, a Danish invention from the 1700s. Like champagne, it is one of the fixed elements of New Year’s Eve. It’s a towering cake made from layer-upon-layer of marzipan rings. The cake’s turret-like shape promises happiness and wealth for the coming year.
Just before midnight, many Danes gather in front of the television to watch a short movie in black and white from 1963 called “90-års fødselsgaden” (“Dinner for one”, also known as “The 90th Birthday”).
At the midnight countdown, it is a tradition for everyone celebrating indoors to stand on a sofa or a chair and jump into the new year. It symbolizes the hope for better time/eases the transition and then everyone wishes each other a Happy New Year. At this point a choir performs the Danish anthem and the Danish Monarch song.
Shortly afterwards, people gather in the streets to set off fireworks. Danes traditionally celebrate New Year with lots of fireworks. It was only around 1900 that fireworks began to become something that ordinary people could buy. Before that, New Year was celebrated by using guns to fire shots into the air. It was done because of an old belief that loud noises and fireworks keep spirits and negative energies away.
New Year’s Eve is the perfect night to cement a friendship with your new Danish bestie; come midnight, it is tradition to round up all your broken bits of china and smash it against your friends’ door in a sign of affection and ever lasting friendship!
This is the precise moment that all of your grievances from the past twelve months can physically manifest themselves for the evening. Remember, the bigger the pile, the more people love you!
A GREAT DANISH AMERICAN BIRTHDAY - GWILI ANDRE
Gwili Andre (born Gurli Ingeborg Elna Andresen, 4 February 1907 – 5 February 1959) was a Danish model and actress who had a brief career in Hollywood films. Born in Frederiksberg, Denmark, Andre had two sisters. Her parents were Carl Axel Andresen b. 1880 and Emma Marie Ellen Sørensen Bruun b. 1884, they married in 1904. Her parents divorced, and her father remarried in 1917. Andre came to Hollywood in the early 1930s with the intention of establishing herself as a film star after working as model in Europe. In 1930, she moved to New York City with her first husband where she was reportedly spotted by David O. Selznick at the premiere of a Broadway show. Selznick was taken by her beauty and arranged for a screen test. She was signed to RKO Studio and, in 1932 appeared in Roar of the Dragon and Secrets of the French Police. While her striking looks were likened to that of Greta Garbo and Marlene Dietrich, her acting garnered poor reviews. One newspaper columnist called her "stiff, colorless and completely talentless performer." Despite the poor reviews of her acting, RKO began using her glamorous looks to promote her career. A widespread publicity campaign ensured that her name and face became well known to the American public, but her next role in No Other Woman (1933), opposite Irene Dunne, was not the success the studio expected. Over the next few years she was relegated to supporting roles which included a role in the Joan Crawford picture A Woman's Face (1941).
Andre was married twice. She was married to realtor Stanisław Mlotkowski in 1929. They separated in 1930, and divorced in 1935. Andre then married engineer William Dallas Cross, Jr. in 1943. They had a son, Peter Lance Cross, in February 1944. They divorced in 1948.
By the early 1940s, Andre's film career had come to a standstill. Her final role was a minor part in one of the popular Falcon series, The Falcon's Brother in 1942. She did not return to the screen, although she spent the rest of her life trying to orchestrate a comeback. Andre returned to her native Denmark with her son after her divorce from William Cross, Jr. but returned to New York City in 1954. She eventually moved back to California.
On 5 February 1959, Andre died in a fire that started in her Venice, California apartment where she lived alone. The cause of the fire was never determined. Upon her death, she was cremated at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California, and her ashes sent for burial at Søndermark Cemetery in Copenhagen, Denmark. - Wikipedia
The Story of Gwili Andre by Amber Grey -
When actress Gwili Andre arrived in Hollywoodland, her blonde hair, blue-eyes, and sharp square-faced complexion captured the same mystique and likeness of the Great Greta Garbo. The whole town seemed to agree to this. At once, columnist Louella Parsons questioned, “Will she become a second Garbo or will she merely become another movie actress?” Due to unfortunate circumstances, Gwili would be remembered more for her tragic death as another cautionary Hollywood tale than for her career.
Mary Elizabeth, Her Royal Highness Crown Princess, Crown Princess of Denmark, Countess of Monpezat
Born: Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Mary was born on 5 February 1972 in Hobart, Tasmania, Australia.
Marriage: On 14 May 2004, on the occasion of her marriage to His Royal Highness Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark, she became Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Mary Elizabeth of Denmark. The marriage ceremony took place in Copenhagen Cathedral, and the wedding festivities were held at Fredensborg Palace.
Family Photo: Franne Voigt
Children: HRH Prince Christian Valdemar Henri John, born on 15 October 2005, HRH Princess Isabella Henrietta Ingrid Margrethe, born on 21 April 2007, HRH Prince Vincent Frederik Minik Alexander, born on 8 January 2011 and HRH Princess Josephine Sophia Ivalo Mathilda, born on 8 January 2011.
Family: The Crown Princess is the youngest daughter of John Dalgleish Donaldson, who was born in Scotland on 5 September 1941. He is a Professor of Applied Mathematics. Her mother was Mrs. Henrietta Clark Donaldson, born 12 May 1942. The couple were married in Edinburgh, Scotland on 31 August 1963 and emigrated to Australia in November that year. They became Australian citizens in 1975. Crown Princess Mary’s mother worked as the Executive Assistant to the Vice Chancellor of The University of Tasmania. Henrietta Clark Donaldson died 20 November 1997. On 5 September 2001, Professor John Donaldson married Susan Elizabeth Donaldson (née Horwood), an author from Britain. The Crown Princess has two sisters and a brother: Jane Alison Stephens, born 26 December 1965, Patricia Anne Bailey, born 16 March 1968, and John Stuart Donaldson, born 9 July 1970.
Crown Princess Mary's biography on The Royal House website -
HRH The Crown Princess
The celebration of Fastelavn comes from the Roman Catholic tradition and that's why it takes place on the last Sunday before Lent (usually between the first of February and the seventh of March). But after the Reformation, the holiday became secular. Fastelavn which means 'fast-evening' was first a celebration for adults with different competitions, games and activities, but later became associated with kids.
What's Fastelavn all about? From The Local DK
During the festivities, you'll see lots of decoration like colorful air balloons and birch branches with sweets.
There are two main traditions connected with Fastelavn. The first is eating buns with different fillings like marzipan. They are sold in every bakery during the holiday. The second is that the kids put on costumes and play a game. They have to hit a barrel filled with sweets and presents. The first kid to make a hole in the barrel will be proclaimed the "king or queen of the cats." That is because back in the day there used to be real cats in those barrels and the aim of the custom was to drive the evil spirits away (people used to believe cats are connected to the evil).
There are different ways to experience Fastelavn in Copenhagen. One of the options is within a local family, a parish or other small communities. The National Museum of Denmark hosts festivities every year, but participants have to sign up for them. Also, Dragør on Amager island south of the capital offers a big celebration featuring a horse procession, flags, and music. In fact, this procession begins on Saturday in Sundby and continues across the island reaching St Magleby on Monday, and finishing in Ullerup on Wednesday. Another Fastelaven procession takes place throughout the weekend in the district of Vanløse.
Outside of the capital, one of the most outstanding celebrations takes place on Æro island. The traditional songs by kids start at 5 am. Adults also have fun wearing masks and guessing who is who. They take them off only at midnight to finally enjoy a drink together.
RASMUS JENSEN COMMEMORATION DAY
Rasmus Jensen (died 20 February 1620) was a Danish Lutheran priest and the first Lutheran cleric in Canada.
Little is known about the life of Jensen, not even the parish where he served as pastor, although his diary during the expedition provides some information. It is known that he was the chaplain aboard an expedition to the New World commissioned by King Christian IV of Denmark and Norway in 1619. The expedition was made up of two small Danish ships Enhiørningen and Lamprenen, with 64 sailors who were Danes, Norwegians, Swedes, and Germans.
Captained by the navigator and explorer, Jens Munk, the ships were searching for the Northwest Passage. After sailing into Frobisher Bay and Ungava Bay, Munk eventually passed through Hudson Strait and reached Digges Island (at the northern tip of Quebec) on August 20. They then set out across the Bay towards the southwest. By early September, they had not yet found a passage. The party arrived in Hudson Bay on September 7, landed at the mouth of Churchill River, settling at what is now Churchill, Manitoba.
The two ships were put side-by-side and prepared for winter as best as they could. It was a disastrous winter. Cold, famine, and scurvy destroyed most of the men. Jensen had died on 20 February 1620. Only Munk and two sailors survived to return, leaving no settlement in the New World. The frigate Enhiørningen had been broken down by ice during the winter. However, the smaller Lamprenen could be salvaged. The return trip lasted two months. The surviving crew members aboard the Lamprenen reached Bergen, Norway on 20 September 1620.
In the future, the majority of Danish Lutheran missionary activity was concentrated in India and the Danish West Indies, especially Saint Thomas. Rasmus Jensen's commemoration date is February 20 within the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
Jens Munk Expedition
A ROYAL BIRTHDAY - FREDERIK IX
Frederick IX (Christian Frederik Franz Michael Carl Valdemar Georg; 11 March 1899 – 14 January 1972) was King of Denmark from 1947 to 1972.
Born into the House of Glücksburg, Frederick was the elder son of King Christian X and Queen Alexandrine of Denmark. He became crown prince when his father succeeded as king in 1912. As a young man, he was educated at the Royal Danish Naval Academy. In 1935, he was married to Princess Ingrid of Sweden and they had three daughters, Margrethe, Benedikte and Anne-Marie. During Nazi Germany's occupation of Denmark, Frederick acted as regent on behalf of his father from 1942 until 1943.
Frederick became king on his father's death in early 1947. During Frederick IX's reign Danish society changed rapidly, the welfare state was expanded and, as a consequence of the booming economy of the 1960s, women entered the labour market. The modernization brought new demands on the monarchy and Frederick's role as a constitutional monarch. Frederick IX died in 1972, and was succeeded by his eldest daughter, Queen Margrethe II. - Wikipedia
From "The Royal House" Website -
Photo: Four generations — four kings: King Christian IX, Crown Prince Frederick (VIII), Prince Christian (X) and Prince Frederick (IX) in 1903.
The King's reign coincided with one of the greatest and swiftest periods of change in the history of Denmark. During these years, Danish society shook off the restrictions of an agricultural society marked by scarcity and developed at breakneck speed towards a welfare state characterised by abundance. Simultaneously, in the light of the experience gained from the Second World War, the former policy of neutrality was replaced by a policy of actively joining alliances. Furthermore, as a consequence of the booming economy of the 1960s, women entered the labour market and achieved in decisive areas the equality that their mothers and grandmothers had fought for over the years. In other words, Denmark became a modern country, which meant altogether new demands on the monarchy and its ability to adjust.
Tactfully supported by the Queen, King Frederik IX with a definite sense of the requirements of the day carried through the change of the monarchy from a distant, elevated institution to a general, symbolic image of the levelling out of class distinctions, which was a result of the modernisation of society.
The King's behaviour was cheerful and straightforward, and he possessed the gift of being able to deal with all people with natural friendliness and warmth without jeopardising the inherent dignity of a monarch. He was helped in this through his training as an officer of the navy with its binding but informal environment, which he felt strongly related to throughout his life. Before he became King, he had acquired the rank of Rear-Admiral and he had had several senior commands on active service. In addition, with his great love of music the King was an able piano player and conductor.
Due to the relaxed and loving tone in the Royal Family, which the King and Queen in contrast to previous tradition were prepared to give the public an idea of, the Royal Family in the reign of Frederik IX became a popular reflection of the typical Danish family as it developed in line with the modernisation of society. Shortly after the King had delivered his New Year's Address to the Nation at the 1971/72 turn of the year, he fell seriously ill. His death following a short period of illness was felt as a great loss by the Danish population, which to an unprecedented extent had taken the King and his family to heart.
The House of Glucksborg | The Danish Monarchy -
The Royal House
THIS DATE IN DANISH AMERICAN HISTORY - TRANSFER DAY
On March 31, 1917, the United States purchased the Danish West Indies from Denmark for $25 Million. In 1927 the islands became a U.S. Territory.
The Danish West Indies or Danish Antilles or Danish Virgin Islands was a Danish colony in the Caribbean, consisting of the islands of Saint Thomas, Saint John, Saint Croix, and Water Island.
The Danish West India Guinea Company annexed the uninhabited island of Saint Thomas in 1672 and St. John in 1718. In 1733, Saint Croix was purchased from the French West India Company. When the Danish company went bankrupt in 1754, the King of Denmark–Norway assumed direct control of the three islands. Britain occupied the Danish West Indies in 1801–02 and 1807–15, during the Napoleonic Wars.
Danish colonizers in the West Indies aimed to exploit the profitable triangular trade, involving the export of firearms and other manufactured goods to Africa in exchange for slaves, who were then transported to the Caribbean to work the sugar plantations. Caribbean colonies, in turn, exported sugar, rum, and molasses to Denmark. The economy of the Danish West Indies depended on slavery. After a rebellion, slavery was officially abolished in 1848, leading to the near economic collapse of the plantations.
Photo: The Check for $25 Million dated March 31, 1917 from the United States to Denmark
In 1852 the Danish parliament first debated the sale of the increasingly unprofitable colony. Denmark tried several times to sell or exchange the Danish West Indies in the late 19th and early 20th centuries: to the United States and to the German Empire respectively. The islands were eventually sold for 25 million dollars to the United States, which took over the administration on 31 March 1917 (Transfer Day), renaming the islands the United States Virgin Islands. - Wikipedia
More from Nina York - St. Croix Friends of Denmark
Close Ties with a Shared Past
St Croix Friends of Denmark Website
And from the Danish National Museum in Copenhagen
Danish Natl Museum
Deadline for Submission: April 15
HANS CHRISTIAN ANDERSEN BIRTHDAY
Hans Christian Andersen (1805-1875), Danish author and poet, wrote many poems, plays, stories and travel essays, but is best known for his fairy tales of which there are over one hundred and fifty, published in numerous collections during his life and many still in print today.
His first collection of Fairy Tales, Told for Children was published in 1835. He broke new ground for Danish literature with his style and use of idiom, irony and humor, memorable characters and un-didactic moral teaching inspired by the primitive folk tales he had learned as a child. Though they do not all end happily his Fairy Tales resound with an authenticity that only unabashed sincerity can produce from a man who could still see through a child’s eyes;
“Thousands of lights were burning on the green branches, and gaily-colored pictures, such as she had seen in the shop-windows, looked down upon her. The little maiden stretched out her hands towards them when--the match went out. The lights of the Christmas tree rose higher and higher, she saw them now as stars in heaven; one fell down and formed a long trail of fire.” —from “The Little Match Girl”
Andersen’s fairy tales of fantasy with moral lessons are popular with children and adults all over the world, and they also contain autobiographical details of the man himself. Born on 2 April, 1805 in Odense, on the Danish island of Funen, Denmark, he was the only son of washerwoman Anna Maria Andersdatter (d.1833) and shoemaker Hans Andersen (d.1816). They were very poor, but Hans took his son to the local playhouse and nurtured his creative side by making him his own toys. Young Hans grew to be tall and lanky, awkward and effeminate, but he loved to sing and dance, and he had a vivid imagination that would soon find its voice. - The Literature Network
HC Andersen Website
by The University of Southern Denmark, Odense
(In Danish and English)
smithsonianmag.com March 2, 2021
Most museums dedicated to a specific historical figure aim to teach visitors about that person. But, the new H.C. Andersen's House, scheduled to open this summer in Denmark, is an exception to the rule.
The museum’s creative director, Henrik Lübker, says the museum in Odense is designed not to showcase Andersen’s life and his classic stories like “The Little Mermaid” and “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” but to echo the sensibility of a fairy tale writer who rarely offered his audience simple lessons.
“It’s not a historical museum,” he says. “It’s more an existential museum.”
Renderings of the museum, which includes 60,000 square feet of building space plus 75,000 square feet of gardens, all designed by Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, reveal that it is full of curves. Labyrinthine hedges almost merge with sinuous wooden pavilions, blurring the line between nature and architecture. A long ramp leads underground only to reveal an unexpected garden.
“It’s kind of like a universe where nothing is quite as it seems,” Lübker says. “Everything you thought you knew can be experienced anew.”
Andersen’s own story has a fairy-tale arc. He was born in 1805 to a mother who worked as a washerwoman in Odense. Yet he dreamed of being a famous writer. He persistently pursued theater directors and potential benefactors, eventually winning help from a wealthy family to continue his education and learn to function in sophisticated circles.
“For a long time he was notorious for being a preposterous young man who came from a dirt poor family,” says Jack Zipes, literature professor emeritus at the University of Minnesota and author of Hans Christian Andersen: The Misunderstood Storyteller.
Despite setbacks—his first poetry and novels were, in Zipes’ words, “not very good, and in fact terrible”—Andersen persisted in seeking recognition for his work. When he eventually wrote “The Ugly Duckling” in 1843, Zipes says, it was clear to everyone in Denmark’s small literary circles that it was a work of autobiography. It’s easy to imagine the experiences that might have led Andersen to describe the tribulations of the little swan, who, according to another duck, was “too big and strange, and therefore he needs a good whacking.”
Andersen’s own emergence as something close to a respected swan of an author came after he began publishing fairy tales in 1835. Unlike the Brothers Grimm—contemporaries whom Andersen admired—he did not collect folk tales but instead adapted existing stories or wrote his own from scratch. According to Maria Tatar, professor emeritus at Harvard University and author of The Annotated Hans Christian Andersen, Andersen most likely learned some of the basic plots he used, as well as storytelling techniques, while spending time in spinning rooms and other workplaces his mother shared with women when he was a child. Although his first story collection, published in 1835, was titled Fairy Tales Told for Children, he always noted that he was writing for a multigenerational audience, including many jokes and ideas that would have gone over kids’ heads.
While some of his stories have apparent moral lessons, many are more ambiguous, or subversive, particularly in terms of relations between the social classes. In “The Tinderbox,” published in 1835, a spiteful common soldier ultimately takes revenge against a king and queen who imprisoned him by having huge dogs rip them and their entire court to shreds before marrying the princess and becoming king himself.
“It has nothing to do with being of moral stature,” Lübker says. “It’s all about power. If you have the dogs, people will say ‘of course you can be king, you have the power.’”
Tatar says it’s possible to see the stories through many different lenses. When she taught Andersen’s work to students, she used to focus on the disciplinary aspects of his stories, in which characters often face terrible punishments for their misdeeds. “After class, there was always a group of three or four—they tended to be young women—who came up to me, and they said ‘but his fairy tales are so beautiful,’” she says.
That led her to begin focusing her attention in a different way. For example, in “The Little Match Girl” from 1845, an impoverished, abused girl freezes to death on the street on New Year’s Eve. But, as she lights one match after another, she sees luminous visions of warm rooms, abundant food and her loving grandmother.
“She is something of an artist in terms of giving us an inner world,” Tatar says. “I started to see that [Andersen] really gives us these moving pictures, and it’s not just their beauty that gets us hooked, I think, but also an ethic of empathy—we’re moved by these images. We start to care about them. And it makes us curious about the inner lives of his characters.”
Lübker says the exhibits in the museum are designed to elicit that kind of engagement with the stories. In an area devoted to “The Little Mermaid,” visitors can look up at a glass ceiling through a pool of water and see people up in the garden, and the sky above them.
“You can’t talk to them, because they’re separated from you,” Lübker says. “You can lie down on pillows on the floor and you can hear the mermaid’s sisters tell about the first time they were up there. We hope we can create this sense of longing for something else in the visitor.”
Another part of the museum sets out to recreate the ominous ambiance of “The Shadow,” a fairy tale Andersen wrote in 1847 in which a good man’s evil shadow eventually replaces and destroys him. Visitors see what at first appears to be their shadows behaving just as they normally do, until they suddenly begin acting on their own. “I think it would ruin the experience if I went too much into detail,” says Lübker.
“They’re very deep stories, and there are many layers to them,” Lübker adds. “Instead of just giving one interpretation, we want to create them in a sense where people can really feel something that is deeper and richer than what their memory of the story is.”
The museum’s architect, Kengo Kuma, known for designing Tokyo’s new National Stadium, built for the 2020 Summer Olympics (now scheduled to be held in 2021), shies away from the view of a building as an autonomous object, Lübker explains. “Architecture for him is kind of like music,” Lübker says. “It’s like a sequence: How you move through space, what you experience. It’s about that meeting between you and the architecture.”
Plans for the museum go back to around 2010, when Odense decided to close off a main thoroughfare that previously divided the city center. The project’s large footprint currently contains the existing, much smaller, Hans Christian Andersen Museum, the Tinderbox Cultural Centre for Children, the building where Andersen was born and Lotzes Have, park themed after Andersen. The city chose Kuma’s firm, which is working together with Danish collaborators Cornelius+Vöge Architects, the MASU Planning Landscape Architects and Eduard Troelsgård Engineers, through a competitive process. In a separate competition, Event Communication of Britain was chosen to design the museum’s exhibitions.
The museum is situated with Andersen’s birthplace as its cornerstone so that visitors’ journeys will end in the room where he is said to have been born. It will also work to connect visitors to other Odense attractions related to Andersen, including his childhood home where he lived until moving to Copenhagen at age 14 to pursue his career in the arts. “Inspired by Boston’s Freedom Trail, we have physical footprints that allow you to walk in the footsteps of Andersen around the city from location to location,” says Lübker.
Due to continuing pandemic-related travel restrictions, Lübker says, when the museum opens this summer, its first visitors may be mostly from within Denmark. But it expects to eventually draw guests from around the world thanks to Andersen’s global popularity.
Tatar notes that Andersen’s fairy tales have been translated into numerous languages and are very popular in China and across Asia, among other places. Artists have also reworked them into uncountable films, picture books and other forms over the decades. The Disney movie Frozen, for example, uses “The Snow Queen” as the source material for a radically transformed story about sisterly love—which, in turn, has been claimed by LGBTQ and disabled communities as a celebration of openly embracing one’s unique qualities. “The core is still there, but it becomes something entirely new that is relevant to what we think about today,” Tatar says.
At the time of Andersen’s death in 1875, the 70-year-old was an internationally recognized writer of iconic stories. But he couldn’t have known how fondly he would be remembered almost 150 years later.
“He never lost the feeling that he was not appreciated enough,” Zipes says. “He would jump for joy to go back to Odense and see this marvelous museum that’s been created in his honor.”
THIS DATE IN DANISH AMERICAN HISTORY - THE SINKING OF THE S/S DANMARK
Painting "And Every Soul Was Saved" by Thomas M.M. Hemy (1889)
On April 6, 1889, the S/S Danmark bound for New York and carrying 735 passengers, sank in the Atlantic Ocean. All the passengers and crew were rescued by the S/S Missouri.
Palm Sunday which is the Sunday before Easter Sunday and the start of Holy Week for Christians is a feast day commemorating Jesus’s entry into Jerusalem on a Donkey (symbolizing peace versus a horse which symbolized war).
The name Palm Sunday comes from the palm branches the crowd scattered on the ground in front of Jesus as he rode into Jerusalem.
A GREAT DANISH AMERICAN BIRTHDAY - ERIK CHRISTIAN HAUGAARD
Erik Christian Haugaard (April 13, 1923 – June 4, 2009) was a Danish-born American writer, best known for children's books and for his translations of the works of Hans Christian Andersen.
Erik Christian Haugaard was born in Frederiksberg, Denmark. He was the son of Professor Gottfred and Karen (Pedersen) Haugaard. He came to the United States in 1940 after fleeing the Nazi invasion of Denmark, and served in the Royal Canadian Air Force before the end of World War II. He attended Black Mountain College in North Carolina from 1941 to 1942. He also attended the New School for Social Research in New York City.
In 1963, he published his first book for children and young adults, Hakon of Rogen's Saga. The book was well received by readers and critics and was named an American Library Association Notable Book. His literary awards include recognition for his 1978 translation of The Complete Fairy Tales and Stories of Hans Christian Andersen. Haugaard married Myrna Seld in 1949 and together they had two children. They later lived in Denmark and Ireland. He died at Ballydehob in County Cork, Ireland.
Work papers of Erik Christian Haugaard are maintained in the de Grummond Children's Literature Collection at the University of Southern Mississippi. The collection consists of material received from Erik Haugaard and Houghton Mifflin between 1967 and 1984.
The University of Minnesota collection of Erik Christian Haugaard papers contains production material, consisting of manuscript materials, for nine titles published between 1963 and 1995. - Wikipedia
From The Royal Danish House website - Once again this year, Her Majesty The Queen’s birthday on 16 April will be marked differently than usual. Like last year, The Queen will spend the day at Fredensborg Palace, where the birthday will be celebrated privately.
When Her Majesty The Queen turned 80 years old almost a year ago, the day turned out to be different than planned. In light of the situation with COVID-19 in the Danish society, the round birthday was celebrated at Fredensborg Palace with digital congratulations from inside Denmark and abroad, joint singing and Her Majesty’s address to the Danish people in the evening. One year later, the situation with COVID-19 continues to mean that The Queen’s birthday must be celebrated differently than the traditional way. Her Majesty and the royal family will therefore not come out on the balcony during the changing of the guard at Amalienborg at 12:00 noon this year. Instead, The Queen will celebrate the day privately at Fredensborg Palace.
However, it will still be possible to send The Queen a birthday greeting via the Royal Danish House’s digital platforms. On the morning of 16 April, a congratulations list will be set up on the Royal Danish House’s website, where it will be possible to send personal felicitations to The Queen. Due to the continued spread of COVID-19, it will not be possible to show up physically at Det Gule Palæ at Amalienborg to handwrite a greeting for Her Majesty. The birthday will be marked throughout the day on the Royal Danish House’s social media and website.
Margrethe Alexandrine Þorhildur Ingrid, Her Majesty The Queen, became Queen of Denmark in 1972. Margrethe II was born on 16 April 1940 at Amalienborg Palace as the daughter of King Frederik IX (d. 1972) and Queen Ingrid, born Princess of Sweden (d. 2000)
Foto: Per Morten Abrahamsen
The Queen’s motto is "God’s help, the love of The People, Denmark’s strength".
The Royal Family comprises Her Majesty The Queen’s relatives, including HRH Princess Benedikte and Her Majesty Queen Anne-Marie.
Christening and confirmation: HM The Queen was christened on 14 May 1940 in Holmens Kirke (the Naval Church) and confirmed on 1 April 1955 at Fredensborg Palace.
The Act of Succession: The Act of Succession of 27 March 1953 gave women the right of succession to the Danish throne but only secondarily. On the occasion of her accession to the throne on 14 January 1972, HM Queen Margrethe II became the first Danish Sovereign under the new Act of Succession. In 2009, The Act of Succession was amended so that the eldest child (regardless of gender) succeeds to the throne.
A seat on the State Council: On 16 April 1958, the Heir Apparent, Princess Margrethe, was given a seat on the State Council, and she subsequently chaired the meetings of the State Council in the absence of King Frederik IX.
Wedding: On 10 June 1967, the Heir Apparent married Henri Marie Jean André, Count of Laborde de Monpezat, who in connection with the marriage became Prince Henrik of Denmark. The wedding ceremony took place in Holmens Kirke, and the wedding festivities were held at Fredensborg Palace. Prince Henrik passed away on 13 February 2018.
Children: HRH Crown Prince Frederik André Henrik Christian, born 26 May 1968, and HRH Prince Joachim Holger Waldemar Christian, born 7 June 1969.
2020 Birthday Address to the Public:
April 16, 2020
KAREN BLIXEN -BIRTHDAY
Karen Blixen (17 April, 1885 - 7, September, 1962), also known by her pseudonym, Isak Dinesen, is famous for her memoir, Out of Africa, and for several works of fiction, including Seven Gothic Tales (1934) and Winter's Tales(1942). A 2007 poll of opinion in her native Denmark lists Karen Blixen as one of the most representative personalities in Danish history. She was several times nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature. She wrote in English, after living on a coffee farm in Kenya from 1914 to 1931.
She married her second cousin, Baron Bror Blixen of Sweden, thereby acquiring the title Baroness. Following their separation and divorce, she had a long affair with the safari hunter, Denys Finch Hatton, son of a titled English family. In 1931, after losing the coffee farm in the Great Depression, Karen Blixen returned to Denmark and embarked on the writing career that lasted until her death in 1962. She was played by Meryl Streep in the 1985 film Out of Africa.
Karen Blixen [Isak Dinesen] can be compared with no other writers. Her voice was formed by her Scandinavian roots, and influenced by a wide variety of works of European literature. Her writing places emphasis on story, rather than characters, and on the philosophical understanding of personal identity. Her stories underline a fascination with the role of fate in controlling the lives of human beings. She believed that a person's response to the vicissitudes of fate offers a possibility for heroism and, ultimately, for immortality. - From the Karen Blixen website. See more here...
Karen Blixen Website
GOD PÅSKE (EASTER SUNDAY)
Easter, also called Påske (Danish) or Resurrection Sunday, is a festival and holiday commemorating the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, described in the New Testament as having occurred on the third day after his burial following his crucifixion by the Romans at Calvary c. 30 AD. It is the culmination of the Passion of Jesus, preceded by Lent (or Great Lent), a 40-day period of fasting, prayer, and penance.
Most Christians refer to the week before Easter as "Holy Week", which contains the days of the Easter Triduum, including Maundy Thursday, commemorating the Maundy and Last Supper, as well as Good Friday, commemorating the crucifixion and death of Jesus. In Western Christianity, Eastertide, or the Easter Season, begins on Easter Sunday and lasts seven weeks, ending with the coming of the 50th day, Pentecost Sunday. In Eastern Christianity, the season of Pascha begins on Pascha and ends with the coming of the 40th day, the Feast of the Ascension.
Easter and the holidays that are related to it are moveable feasts which do not fall on a fixed date in the Gregorian or Julian calendars which follow only the cycle of the Sun; rather, its date is offset from the date of Passover and is therefore calculated based on a lunisolar calendar similar to the Hebrew calendar. The First Council of Nicaea (325) established two rules, independence of the Jewish calendar and worldwide uniformity, which were the only rules for Easter explicitly laid down by the council. No details for the computation were specified; these were worked out in practice, a process that took centuries and generated a number of controversies. It has come to be the first Sunday after the ecclesiastical full moon that occurs on or soonest after 21 March. Even if calculated on the basis of the more accurate Gregorian calendar, the date of that full moon sometimes differs from that of the astronomical first full moon after the March equinox.
Easter is linked to the Jewish Passover by much of its symbolism, as well as by its position in the calendar. In most European languages the feast is called by the words for passover in those languages; and in the older English versions of the Bible the term Easter was the term used to translate passover. Easter customs vary across the Christian world, and include sunrise services, exclaiming the Paschal greeting, clipping the church, and decorating Easter eggs (symbols of the empty tomb). The Easter lily, a symbol of the resurrection, traditionally decorates the chancel area of churches on this day and for the rest of Eastertide. Additional customs that have become associated with Easter and are observed by both Christians and some non-Christians include egg hunting, the Easter Bunny, and Easter parades. There are also various traditional Easter foods that vary regionally.
Here's What You Need to Know About Danish Easter Traditions
Danish traditions, Easter Eggs | © andreas160578 / Pixabay
Easter is celebrated in different ways in countries all over the globe and so, Denmark has its own traditions. If you’re visiting the country this time of the year and want to be prepared or just want to get an idea of what Danes love to do when celebrating Easter, this guide has everything you need. Gækkebreve, a lot of food, snaps and chocolate eggs are some of the things that are never absent from the Danish Easter.
During Easter, Danes celebrate mostly the arrival of springtime and with Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter Sunday and Easter Monday being national holidays, they find Easter as a good opportunity for a short escape to their summer houses. It’s not very common for Danes to attend church during Easter and there aren’t any special religious events taking place during the holy week. So, don’t expect to see grandiose celebrations like the ones during Semana Santa in Seville or processions like Epitaphio that takes place in Greece on Good Friday.
Danish countryside in spring | © Per Ganrot / Flickr
The weeks before Easter every child in Denmark that wants to get an extra Easter chocolate egg writes and sends gækkebrev. The senders of gækkebrevemust write a ‘teaser poem’ on a paper and then sign it with a number of dots equal to their names’ letters. Children are called to use their imagination and cut the paper into different shapes, include a snowdrop (vintergække), which is the first flower of the year, and make sure that their poem rhymes. If the recipient of the letter guesses who sent him the gækkebrev then the sender must give him an Easter chocolate egg and if not, then the other way around. Since usually the senders are children and the recipients are adults, it’s an unwritten rule and almost part of the tradition that the receivers never manage to guess the person behind the ‘fool’s letter’.
Danish Easter tradition,Gækkebreve | © Nillerdk / Wikimedia Commons
Eggs are part of Easter traditions in many countries and Denmark is no exception. Many houses are decorated with fake yellow or green eggs while chocolate eggs and boiled chicken’s eggs dyed in different colours never miss from the Easter lunch table. Many Danes hide chocolate eggs in their gardens for children to find on Easter Sunday, keeping a tradition that dates back to the early 2oth century alive.
Tivoli Easter Eggs Decoration | © David Jones / Flickr
Celebrating without a big table filled with delicacies, beer and snaps it’s not a proper celebration for Danes regardless the time of the year. For the Sunday Easter lunch, locals prepare lamb, boiled eggs, herring and other kinds of fish such as salmon. The special Easter beer, which is brewed only this time of the year, is, according to beer specialists, heavier and tastier than common beers so it’s a must to have it on the festive table. Finally, even though Easter lunch starts from early afternoon, all guests have to drink at least one traditional Danish snap. The high-levelled alcohol spirits must be drunk in one gulp after everyone has raised their glasses, yelling, “Skål” and Easter wishes.
Danish Easter lunch | © Andreas Hagerman / Flickr
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