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The term Danmark-Norge (Denmark-Norway) is often used to refer the kingdom of Denmark and Norway including the Norwegian colonies of Iceland, Greenland, and the Færø Islands. They were united in a personal union from 1387 until 1536 and in a United Monarchy from 1660 to 1814. A personal union is where two or more states have a common ruler who reigns over all of the states but where each individual state is independent and is therefore self sufficient. In 1536 the Norwegian State Council was done away with and the national government was put under the Danish government. This was done as a result of the reformation even though Norway existed as a separate entity in the United Monarchy with its own laws and separate institutions. This ordinance was repealed with the introduction of the absolute monarchy in 1660 and a new administration was put in place under the United Monarchy. King Christian V established a new law in 1687. Before that time Magnus Lagabøte , who was the King of Norway in 1261, had created the Norwegian laws which were embraced by the parliament in 1272-1274. During the entire time of the Union the king was titled “King of Denmark and Norway”. Outwardly the United Monarchy was often perceived as Danish and the area which the House of Oldenburg governed was referred to as The Kingdom of Denmark. (King Christian I was the oldest son of Count Dietrich of Oldenburg). This included the royal possessions of Denmark and Norway, but excluded duchies of Slesvig and Holstein. Nationalism, an ideology which says that each nation should have the right of self determination in their own state, grew in the years before 1814 and there were a number of pamphlets circulated accusing Denmark of profiting by the exploitation of Norway. This bitterness was felt by many Norwegians for many years and the union with Denmark was at that time called “the 400-year’s night”. Denmark profited greatly from the raw materials Norway provided for the entire period of their union. For example, all the silver from the mines in Kongsberg was by statute required to be sent to Denmark. The union with Denmark was a period of prosperity for Norway, but it was undoubtedly Denmark which profited the most. This created so much of a injustice that when the Norwegians created their Constitution at Eidsvoll May 17, 1814, they added a passage stating the right to manage their own resources.


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