The annual observance of the Dissolution of Union between Norway and Sweden occurs on June 7. As the name suggests, this day commemorates the separation of Norway and Sweden as united kingdoms with a common monarch and foreign policy. The Norwegian parliament, the Storting, proposed the dissolution. After years of being subject to Sweden’s foreign policies in the aftermath of the war between the two countries, this culminated in Norway achieving what it had always desired: the ability to govern itself. The day commemorates this historical triumph and aims to remind every Norwegian living locally or abroad of its significance.
HISTORY OF DISSOLUTION OF UNION BETWEEN NORWAY AND SWEDEN
Sweden and Norway fought a brief conflict that concluded in 1814, with Sweden emerging victorious. Following its defeat in the conflict, Norway was compelled to join Sweden. By enabling Norway to maintain its parliament, army, and judiciary, the Swedes gave Norway a sense of independence. However, they were subject to the Swedish monarch and had a singular foreign policy administered by the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
With a forced union come differences, and Sweden and Norway’s union was no exception. Norway favoured lower tariffs because its economy was more dependent on trade, whereas Sweden desired higher duties. On the international stage, Norway’s connections with England and a few other non-European nations were stronger than Sweden’s ties with Germany. Politically, Norway progressively became more liberal, thereby limiting the king’s power, whereas Sweden did not.
As a result of these disparities, the Norwegian parliament passed a law to separate Norway from Sweden. In response to King Oscar II’s refusal to embrace the new law, the Norwegian government resigned. As King Oscar II was unable to establish an alternative administration, the Norwegian government moved to dissolve the union with Sweden under a single monarch. The monarch of Norway scheduled a referendum for the Norwegian people to vote on the dissolution, which they had anticipated and prepared for. In 1905, the dissolution was approved with 99.95 percent of the vote in favour.
5 INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT NORWAY
Norway houses the northernmost location in Europe.
Norway contains Europe’s northernmost point, North Cape.
Norway is where the Nobel Peace Prize is bestowed.
Not only is it bestowed in Norway, but the presiding committee is also Norwegian.
The nations that founded the U.N.
Norway is one of the founding nations of the United Nations, and Trygve Lie was the first Secretary-General.
Norway is home to the longest road tunnel in the world.
The length of the Laerdal Tunnel is just over 24 kilometres, making it the longest in the world.
Russia shares a geographic border with Norway.
There is only one 120-mile-long road connecting Norway and Russia.
DISSOLUTION OF UNION BETWEEN NORWAY AND SWEDEN DATES