Count Johann Hartwig Ernst von Bernstorff
Count Johann Hartwig Ernst von Bernstorff was a German-Danish statesman and a member of the Bernstorff noble family of Mecklenburg. He was the son of Joachim Engelke Freiherr von Bernstorff, chamberlain to the Elector of Hanover and his grandfather, Andreas Gottlieb von Bernstorff, had been one of the ablest ministers of George I and the head of the German Chancery. He was introduced into the Danish service by his relations, the brothers Plessen, in 1732, he was sent on a diplomatic mission to the court of Dresden, and from 1738 he represented Holstein at the Eternal Diet of Regensburg. From 1744 to 1750, he represented Denmark at Paris, whence he returned in 1754 to Denmark as Minister of Foreign Affairs, but his chief concern was foreign policy. In intimate connection with the Gottorp affair stood the question of the equilibrium of the north. A friendly alliance with a relatively weak Sweden was the point of Bernstorffs policy. Amidst all these perplexities Bernstorff proved himself a consummate statesman, the first difficult problem he had to face was the Seven Years War.
But the course of the war made this compact inoperative, the coolness and firmness of Bernstorff saved the situation. He protested that the king of Denmark was bound to defend Schleswig so long as there was a sword in Denmark and he rejected the insulting ultimatum of the Russian emperor. He placed the best French general of the day at the head of the well-equipped Danish army, but just as the Russian and Danish armies had come within striking distance, the tidings reached Copenhagen that Peter III had been overthrown by his consort, Catherine II. For his part in this treaty Bernstorff was created count and it is remarkable, that though Bernstorff ruled Denmark for twenty years he never learnt the Danish language. This treaty proved to be a mistake on Denmarks part. Attribution This article incorporates text from a now in the public domain, Hugh, ed. Bernstorff, Johann Hartwig Ernst. Poul Vedel, Den ældre Grev Bernstorffs ministerium, Correspondence ministirielle du Comte J. H. E. Bernstorff, ed.
Vedel, Aage Friis, Bernstorfferne og Danmark
Caroline Matilda of Great Britain
Caroline Matilda of Great Britain was Queen consort of Denmark and Norway by marriage to King Christian VII. Caroline Matilda was born in Leicester House, London, on 22 July 1751 as the ninth and youngest child of Frederick, Prince of Wales and her father died suddenly about three months before her birth, on 31 March 1751. Both of her names were used to distinguish her from her paternal aunt, the princess was christened ten days after being born, on 1 August, at the same house, by the Bishop of Norwich, Thomas Hayter. Her godparents were her brother George, her aunt Caroline and her sister Augusta. She was brought up by her mother away from the English court and was described as natural and informal. She spent most of the time with her family in Leicester House, in 1764, a marriage was suggested between the Danish House of Oldenburg and the British House of Hanover, specifically between Christian, Crown Prince of Denmark, and a British princess. The marriage was suitable because both the British and Danish royal families were Protestant and of the rank, and thus had the same status as well as religion.
Additionally, the deceased Queen Louise had been popular in Denmark. The official betrothal was announced on 10 January 1765, on 14 January 1766, in the middle of preparations for the wedding, King Frederick V died and his 17-year-old son became King Christian VII. On 1 October of that year in the chapel of St Jamess Palace the marriage was celebrated by proxy, in which the groom was represented by Prince Edward, Duke of York. Twelve days later, Caroline Matilda arrived in Roskilde, where she met her future husband, the official wedding ceremony took place on 8 November 1766 in the Royal Chapel at Christiansborg Palace in Copenhagen. Marriage celebrations and balls lasted for another month, on 1 May 1767, Caroline Matilda was crowned Queen of Denmark in Copenhagen. The young Queen at the Danish court was described as particularly temperamental, however, her natural and unaffected personality was not popular at the strict Danish court, despite the fact that originally she was warmly received in Copenhagen.
The weak-willed, self-centered, and mentally ill Christian VII was cold to his wife and this was not difficult, as Christian VII did not like her. Caroline Matilda, though not interested in politics, after the birth of an heir has come to play a key role at the court. Her dislike of the favorites of her husband increased when, in 1768, Holck managed to exile Louise von Plessen from court and she refused to accept von Plessens successor, Anne Sofie von Berckentin, whom she suspected to have taken part in the plot to exile von Plessen. Thus, Plessen was not replaced until Margrethe von der Lühe agreed to accept the post in 1768, in May 1768 Christian VII took his long tour of Europe, including stays in Altona and London. Caroline Matilda spent the summer at Frederiksborg Castle with her son before returning to Copenhagen in the autumn
Frederik V on Horseback
Frederik V on Horseback is a sculpture in Amalienborg Square, framed by the four symmetrical wings of the Amalienborg palace. The statue represents Frederick V of Denmark in classic attire, crowned with laurels and with his hand outstretched, commissioned by the Danish East India Company, it was designed in Neoclassical style by Jacques Saly in 1768 and was cast in bronze in 1771. The apparent dignity and tranquility in the depiction of the king is typical of Danish representations of monarchs and it is considered to be one of the notable equestrian monuments of its time. In 1752 Saly was commissioned to create a sculpture of King Frederick V of Denmark on horseback, the equestrian statue was commissioned by Adam Gottlob Moltke, head of the Asiatic Company, as a gift to the king. But while Moltke’s company offered to finance the statue, it was the government who chose the sculptor, count Johan Hartvig Ernst Bernstorff wrote to the Danish Legation secretary to the French Court in Paris, Joachim Wasserschlebe, to find a suitable French sculptor.
Sculptor Edmé Bouchardon rejected the offer, but suggested Saly, who wanted a significant sum for the model, work began on the monument that same year. Saly showed the king the first sketch of the statue on 4 December 1754. The king approved a sketch for the monument in August 1755. This resulted in a model, which he showed the king in November 1758. Casts of this model are found in both the collection of the Academy and the State Collection, now the Danish National Gallery, after having set up an appropriate studio, Saly carried out the work on the large model of the equestrian statue from 1761 to 1763. The plaster cast was presented to the Academy members on 3 February 1764, the king saw this model. Preparations for the casting took four more years, and Frenchman Pierre Gors did the casting on 2 March 1768. The year 1768 is officially considered the statue’s completion date, the bronze was cast on 2 March 1768 by Frenchman Pierre Gors and weighed some 22 tons. Another three years were spent on finishing the work, which was inaugurated in 1771, including the base, the statue reaches a height of almost 12 m.
Saly reported he had been inspired by the statue of Marcus Aurelius in Rome as well as by Giambolognas equestrian Henry IV on the Pont Neuf in Paris. But perhaps his greatest inspiration was Edmé Bouchardons Louis XV in Place Louis XV and it had just been completed when Saly left for Denmark. Saly first modelled a portrait of the King. He made a few small bronze castings, the last of which was approved by Frederik V in 1755, Saly went on to study horses in the royal stables
Christian VII of Denmark
Christian VII was a monarch of the House of Oldenburg who was King of Denmark-Norway and Duke of Schleswig and Holstein from 1766 until his death. For his motto he chose, Gloria ex amore patriae, Christian VIIs reign was marked by mental illness and for most of his reign Christian was only nominally king. His half-brother Frederick was designated as regent of Denmark in 1772, from 1784 until Christian VIIs death in 1808, Christians son, Frederick VI, acted as unofficial regent. Christian was the son of King Frederick V and his first wife Louise of Great Britain and he was born in the Queens Bedchamber at Christiansborg Palace, the Royal residence in Copenhagen. He was baptized a few hours the same day and his godparents were King Frederick V, Queen Dowager Sophie Magdalene, Princess Louise and Princess Charlotte Amalie. A former heir to the throne, named Christian, had died in infancy in 1747, therefore and his mother Queen Louise died in 1751, two years after his birth. The following year his father married to Juliane Marie of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel, after a long period of infirmity, Frederick V died 14 January 1766, just 42 years old.
Later the same day, Christian was proclaimed king from the balcony of Christiansborg Palace, Christians reign was marked by mental illness which affected government decisions, and for most of his reign Christian was only nominally king. His court physicians were especially worried by his frequent masturbation and his royal advisers changed depending on who won power struggles around the throne. In the late 1760s, he came under the influence of his personal physician Johann Friedrich Struensee, from 1770 to 1772, Struensee was de facto regent of the country, and introduced progressive reforms signed into law by Christian VII. The dynastic marriage took place at Christiansborg Palace on 8 November 1766, after his marriage, he abandoned himself to the worst excesses, especially sexual promiscuity. In 1767, he entered into a relationship with the courtesan Støvlet-Cathrine and he publicly declared that he could not love Caroline Matilda, because it was unfashionable to love ones wife. He ultimately sank into a condition of mental stupor, symptoms during this time included paranoia, self-mutilation and hallucinations.
Struensee was a protégé of an Enlightenment circle of aristocrats that had been rejected by the court in Copenhagen and he was a skilled doctor, and having somewhat restored the kings health while visiting the Schleswig-Holstein area, he gained the kings affection. He was retained as travelling physician on 5 April 1768, and accompanied the entourage on the King’s foreign tour to Paris and he was given the title of State Councilor on 12 May 1768, barely a week after leaving Altona. The neglected and lonely Caroline Matilda entered into an affair with Struensee, in 1772, the kings marriage with Caroline Matilda was dissolved by divorce. Christians marriage with Caroline Matilda produced two children, the future King Frederick VI and Princess Louise Auguste, however, it is widely believed that Louise was the daughter of Struensee—portrait comparisons tend to support this hypothesis. Struensee, following a deluge of modernising and emancipating reforms, was arrested and executed the same year, Christian signed Struensees arrest and execution warrant under pressure from his stepmother, Queen Juliane Marie, who had led the movement to have the marriage ended
Frederick VI of Denmark
Frederick VI was King of Denmark from 13 March 1808 to 3 December 1839 and King of Norway from 13 March 1808 to 7 February 1814. From 1784 until his accession, he served as regent during his fathers illness and was referred to as the Crown Prince Regent. For his motto he chose God and the just cause and since the time of his reign, Frederick was born at Christiansborg Palace in Copenhagen. Frederick belonged to the House of Oldenburg and his parents were King Christian VII and Caroline Matilda of Great Britain. He was born after 15 months of marriage, just a day before his fathers 19th birthday, as the eldest son of the ruling king, he automatically became crown prince at birth. On 30 January of the year, he was baptised at Christiansborg Palace by Ludvig Harboe. His godparents were King Christian VII, the dowager queen Juliana Maria and his half-uncle, from 1770 to 1772, Struensee was de facto regent and lover of Caroline Matilda, Fredericks mother. Both were ideologically influenced by Enlightenment thinkers such as Voltaire and Jean Jacques Rousseau, while Struensee was in power, young Frederick was raised at Hirschholm Palace following the educational approach advocated by Rousseau in his famous work Émile.
Instead of receiving direct instruction, Frederick was expected to learn everything through his own efforts through playing with two boys as per Struensees instructions. On 8 January 1772, after the revolt against Struensee, Fredericks 18-year-old half-uncle Hereditary Prince Frederick was made regent, the real power, was held by Hereditary Prince Fredericks mother, Queen Dowager Juliana Maria, aided by Ove Høegh-Guldberg. It is said that during the coup, he engaged in a fistfight with his half-uncle over the regency and he continued as regent of Denmark under his fathers name until the latters death in 1808. During the regency, Frederick instituted widespread liberal reforms with the assistance of Chief Minister Andreas Peter Bernstorff, crises encountered during his reign include disagreement with the British over neutral shipping. This resulted in two British attacks on Copenhagen, the Battle of Copenhagen of 1801 and the Battle of Copenhagen of 1807, the conflict continued in the Gunboat War between Denmark-Norway and the United Kingdom, which lasted until the Treaty of Kiel in 1814.
There was speculation that he was to marry a Prussian princess and they married in Gottorp on 31 July 1790 and had eight children. Their eldest daughter, Princess Caroline married her father’s first cousin, the youngest, Princess Wilhelmine, became the wife of the future Frederick VII of Denmark. None of Frederick VIs sons survived infancy and when he died, he was succeeded by his cousin Christian VIII of Denmark, Frederick became King of Denmark on 13 March 1808. When the throne of Sweden seemed likely to become vacant in 1809, Fredericks brother-in-law, Prince Christian Augustus of Augustenborg, was first elected to the throne of Sweden, followed by the French Marshal Bernadotte. During the Napoleonic Wars, he tried to maintain Danish neutrality, however after the British bombardment of Copenhagen, after the French defeat in Russia in 1812, the Allies again asked him to change sides but he refused
The term Danish Realm refers to the relationship between Denmark proper, the Faroe Islands and Greenland—three countries constituting the Kingdom of Denmark. The legal nature of the Kingdom of Denmark is fundamentally one of a sovereign state. The Faroe Islands and Greenland have been part of the Crown of Denmark since 1397 when the Kalmar Union was ratified, legal matters in The Danish Realm are subject to the Danish Constitution. Beginning in 1953, state law issues within The Danish Realm has been governed by The Unity of the Realm, a less formal name for The Unity of the Realm is the Commonwealth of the Realm. In 1978, The Unity of The Realm was for the first time referred to as rigsfællesskabet. The name caught on and since the 1990s, both The Unity of The Realm and The Danish Realm itself has increasingly been referred to as simply rigsfællesskabet in daily parlance. The Danish Constitution stipulates that the foreign and security interests for all parts of the Danish Realm are the responsibility of the Danish government, the Faroes received home rule in 1948 and Greenland did so in 1979.
In 2005, the Faroes received a self-government arrangement, and in 2009 Greenland received self rule, the Danish Realms unique state of internal affairs is acted out in the principle of The Unity of the Realm. This principle is derived from Article 1 of the Danish Constitution which specifies that constitutional law applies equally to all areas of the Danish Realm, the Constitutional Act specifies that sovereignty is to continue to be exclusively with the authorities of the Realm. The language of Denmark is Danish, and the Danish state authorities are based in Denmark, the Kingdom of Denmarks parliament, with its 179 members, is located in the capital, Copenhagen. Two of the members are elected in each of Greenland and the Faroe Islands. The Government ministries are located in Copenhagen, as is the highest court, in principle, the Danish Realm constitutes a unified sovereign state, with equal status between its constituent parts. Devolution differs from federalism in that the powers of the subnational authority ultimately reside in central government.
The Self-Government Arrangements devolves political competence and responsibility from the Danish political authorities to the Faroese, the Faroese and Greenlandic authorities administer the tasks taken over from the state, enact legislation in these specific fields and have the economic responsibility for solving these tasks. The Danish government provides a grant to the Faroese and the Greenlandic authorities to cover the costs of these devolved areas. The 1948 Home Rule Act of the Faroe Islands sets out the terms of Faroese home rule, the Act states. the Faroe Islands shall constitute a self-governing community within the State of Denmark. It establishes the government of the Faroe Islands and the Faroese parliament. The Faroe Islands were previously administered as a Danish county, the Home Rule Act abolished the post of Amtmand and these powers were expanded in a 2005 Act, which named the Faroese home government as an equal partner with the Danish government