This is not a love story.
It’s St. Olaf’s day in Norway.
He was the king of Norway way, way back in history. He reigned from 1015-1028,
He was later named a Saint by the Roman Catholic Church as well as the Eastern Orthodox Church. The Lutherans are rather fond of him as well.
He is most noted for Christianizing Norway. However, current historians aren’t in agreement with that – revisionists say that Olaf was just as pagan as his predecessor, Sweyn Forkbeard.
Some say Olaf wasn’t the rightful king, and assuredly, after his death, Cnut – I am not making that name UP – the son of Sweyn ForkBeard, the son of Harold Bluetooth, who was the ‘first’ king of Norway, took over.
Cnut ruled a Scandinavian empire that included Norway, Sweden, Denmark, and England.
England wasn’t too keen about it!
Eventually, Norway and Sweden were a combined kingdom ruled mainly by Danish princes and other lesser European royals.
In 1905, Norway and Sweden had a no-fault divorce, split the community property equally, and Norway got a new king. He wasn’t Norwegian either. And oddly enough, he was an elected king. The election thing was his idea. The newly divorced Norway was wavering between a republic and a monarchy, and the Danish Prince, who really was descended from Norwegian Kings and was replacing his uncle – didn’t want to shelp all the way UP a fjord only to find out that he’d been sold a bill of goods. So, an election was held, and 79% of the voting population of Norway, elves included, said yes to royalty and no to republicans.
The lucky winner was Christian Frederick Karl Georg Valdemar Axel, but his friends just called him “Your Majesty”.
He chose the name Haakon VII in honor of a slew of Norwegian kings – a slew, in this case being six – which thrilled the Norwegian people.
His wife kept her name and simply went by Queen Maud.
Maud was the daughter of King Edward VII of England, She was one of five grand-daughters of Queen Victoria who left England to become Queen Consort in foreign nations..
She was known for her beauty…
… and her tiny waist – 18 inches.
The present King of Norway, Harald V, is the grandson of Haakon VII and Queen Maud.
Why does this matter?
Well, in Norway today, it’s St. Olaf’s Day as well as King Haakon VII’s birthday, and after all the English Royal family stuff and the Germantown and Ohio stuff, I thought I’d give Jan a break and talk about his homeland.
Oh, and Kimberly too!
Happy St. Olaf’s Day…party harty, make Betty White proud!