1849 A Concise History of Denmark Timeline from Early to Now

Oriented Towards the Great Spaces of The Sea History of Denmark

A History of Denmark: Denmark is a Nordic Country. Denmark was, in its time and like Norway, the land of the Vikings. A predominant kingdom in medieval Northern Europe, it was progressively supplanted by Sweden in the seventeenth century, while remaining, until 1814, a respectable power, capable of operating on vast horizons and in conditions of vigorously defending its interests. In this way, during the nineteenth century, Denmark did not hesitate to face great powers or fearsome coalitions. Always defeated, but always a fighter, she has preserved to this day a strong awareness of her good rights, her honor and her identity. The History of Denmark Timeline.

The History of Denmark Timeline
The History of Denmark Timeline

The control of the “Danish Straits” and in the first place of the Øresund, appeared for many centuries a stake of primary importance. The Kingdom of Denmark, held in check by the Hanseatic League, managed to impose a toll on it in the fifteenth century. The geographical position and the will of its sovereigns explain the pre-eminent role that the country has long played. His ambitious dynasty also managed to achieve a Nordic union, placing Norway under his authority in 1389 and Sweden in 1397; in 1445 its capital was moved from Roskilde to Copenhagen, a port on the Sund.

Danish history timeline: In the modern era, the rivalry with Sweden, which became independent again in 1521, was at the origin of several wars. The establishment of a standing army dates back to 1614. The war fleet, whose origin is much older, will come to count up to 60 ships of the line. Crews were recruited in Denmark and Norway, but also in the king’s German fiefdoms, the duchies of Schleswig and Holstein, as well as in Iceland, Greenland, the Faroe Islands and Spitzberg. But these conflicts will contribute to weakening the finances of the kingdom, also and above all because of the intervention, unsuccessfully, in German affairs to support the Protestant cause.

The History on Denmark

  • Total Area of Denmark     42,943 km 2 (16,580 sq mi)
  • Capital Of Denmark             Copenhagen
  • Language Of Denmark       Danish
  • Continent Of Denmark      Europe
  • Is Denmark part of European union? Yes

How Did Denmark Get Its Name?

Why is Denmark called Denmark?Denmark” actually means the border forest of the Danes. The lead “Dan” is a form of the folk name Daner, and the afterfix “mark” in the old days meant “border forest”, writes Medieval Info. Thus, the name probably refers to the border forests in South Schleswig, which for 1,000 years constituted the border between Denmark and the rest of Europe.

Who named Denmark?

Denmark” is first mentioned on the Jelling Stone around the year 985, while (Denamearc) is mentioned around the year 890 by the Norwegian Ottar in the Anglo-Saxon chronicle Orosius in the story of his journey from Skiringssal in Vestfold to Hedeby.

How did Denmark get its name? The name Denmark actually means the Danes’ “field”, i.e. the Danes’ area or land, or the Danes’ border area.

A Brief History of Denmark Religion

Rank Belief System Share of Contemporary Danish Population
1 Evangelical Lutheran Christian Church of Denmark 76.9%
2 Islam 3.7%
3 Atheists, Agnostics, Roman Catholic Christians, Jews, and Others 19.4%

The Early History of Denmark

Early History of Denmark: The findings lead us to think that the first settlements in the territories of present-day Denmark date back to 130,000-110,000a. C to then be repopulated again, after the era of the interglacial period, starting from 12,500a. C approx. People ask how old is Denmark?

The Bronze Age is witnessed here by the presence of numerous sepulchral mounds in which numerous artifacts have been found.

Some populations began to migrate south where they came into contact with the Roman people; these thus began to forge commercial relations, as evidenced by the Roman coins found in Danish territory, and the area was subject to the strong influence of Celtic culture.

Denmark was colonized by the Scandinavian populations, known as Danes or Danes, around the fifth century of .C, who, probably, settled in the Jutland peninsula and then aimed at the conquest of England.

What Is The Denmark History Timeline?

  • Denmark time line History
Kingdom of Denmark History Timeline: Since the end of the last Ice Age – approximately 10,000 BC – people have migrated from the Eastern and Southern parts of Europe to the Northern area we now know to be Denmark. The flat terrain, rich soil, close proximity to water and at times harsh climate, has shaped Danish history and culture ever since.

The First Humans In Denmark

First Human History of Denmark: The first Danes were hunters and fisherman who probably entered the country migrating from Southern and Eastern Europe by the end of the last Ice Age around 10,000 BC. By 3000 BC, farms had begun to appear on the flat, fertile land we now call Denmark. At first, the farmers used stone tools and weapons, but they later adopted bronze and iron.

By the time of the Iron Age, the Danes had established trade links with the Roman Empire, trading goods such as animal furs and amber. By 200 AD, the Danish people had begun using the Rune language chiseled in stone. History of Denmark.

Ancient Denmark History

What is the history of Denmark? The oldest traces of prehistoric settlement date back to the Stone Age. Between 400 and 500 settle the Jutes together with the Saxony the Angling and the Beading about the North Sea Britain after the Roman occupation withdrew from there. The ancestors of today’s Danes came in the 6th century from today’s Southern sweden after Jutland and some western Baltic Sea islands. There they repressed or mixed with others germanic Tribes that had already settled there earlier.

The Glamorous, Violent Vikings

History in Denmark: One of the most notorious periods in Danish history is the age of the Vikings. It began around 793 AD with the raids on the English tidal island of Lindisfarne. The Vikings were eventually to establish settlements in Yorkshire in Northern England and in Normandy in the Northwestern part of France.

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The Viking Age lasted about 250 years. At one point, the Danish Viking Sweyn Forkbeard (Svend Tveskæg) and his son Canute the Great (Knud den Store) were the kings not only of Denmark but of Norway, Southern Sweden, Greenland, the Faroe Islands, Shetland, Orkney and parts of England. History of Denmark.

The Vikings travelled widely outside their realm, sailing to what today is Russia and Turkey. Their admirable navigation skills at sea also brought them as far as Greenland and North America. They continued to plunder and steal, along with more peaceful activities such as trading precious metals, textiles, glassware, jewellery, and fur. On occasion, they also bought and sold European slaves.

Denmark in Vikings age
Denmark in Vikings age

The Introduction of Christianity

History of Religion in Denmark: Following the baptism of the Danish King Harald Bluetooth in 965 AD, the Christian clergy became influential in Danish society. The newly-adopted religion, however, did not immediately turn the Danes into a peaceful people. They continued to fight to maintain and expand their territory, conquering parts of Germany and Estonia. History of Denmark. 

Nordic Unity And Rivalry

History of Denmark in 1397, with the Kalmar Union,  Denmark (incl. Greenland and Iceland), Norway and Sweden was joined into a single monarchy ruled by the Queen Margrethe I.


Denmark historical timeline:  Already in the Stone Age people are said to have lived in Denmark. The first ancestors of today’s Danes arrived in jutland in the 6th century from today’s southern Sweden, where they mixed with or displaced other Germanic tribes that lived there.

Isolated first kingdoms emerged, which were united for the first time under Gorm the Old (Danish: Gorm den Gamle) in the 10th century. Gorm owed his nickname to the old age he allegedly reached by the standards of the time.

After Gorm the Old, Harald Blauzahn, Gorm’s son, came to the throne. He was baptized about 960 and the kingdom was Christianized. History of Denmark.

At that time, the first Danes had been sailors until then. Nowadays, almost every person can imagine something under the term “Viking“. However, all sailors up to the 10th century from Sweden, Norway and Denmark are referred to as such.

  • When was Denmark founded?

From that time until the 11th century, they were very feared – they fought wars, founded colonies, traded and plundered. So they conquered large parts of Norway, South Jutland and the British Isles, and Denmark became a rich country. The Viking Age ended around 1066. History of Denmark. 


The Kalmar Union united the kingdoms of Sweden, Denmark and Norway into one kingdom. The alliance lasted from 1397 to 1523 and was initially appointed by Denmark’s then ruler Maragrethe I. However, conflicts with Sweden were decisive until the 17th century, because the countries struggled for the supremacy of Scandinavia, and finally Sweden gained independence and left the alliance.

Of course, the Reformation by Martin Luther also played a major role for Denmark, and so Denmark became Protestant around 1536 during the Reformation. History of Denmark.


The struggles with Sweden for supremacy in the Baltic Sea region continued. Sweden ultimately won the battle and Denmark had to cede about a third of its territory. After the Great Northern War (1700 – 1720), in which Sweden again did not lose its supremacy, a more peaceful period followed. History of Denmark.

During the Napoleonic period in Europe, Denmark remained neutral at first, but later decided to side with France. As a result, Denmark had to cede Norway and Helgoland after France’s defeat.

Under Frederik VII, Denmark went from an absolutist to a constitutional monarchy in 1848. From then on, the king was committed to a constitution. This was a significant change in the history of Denmark.

  • when did Denmark gain independence?

When did Denmark became a country? and when did Denmark gain independence? During the German-Danish War (1864), Denmark lost under Christian IX. Holstein, Schleswig and Lauenburg. During the 1st World War (1914 – 1918), Denmark remained neutral, but was still occupied by the Germans afterwards. In 1945 Denmark became a member of the UN and in 1973 the country joined the European Economic Community. History of Denmark.

Denmark A New Civil War With Sweden

 Supported by the United Provinces, took place in 1643-1645. During this battle King Christian IV, at the age of 64, assumes command of the fleet to repel the enemy team. The sovereign, seriously wounded in the face, does not give in, galvanizing his men and managing to put the opponent on the run. His successor, Frederick III, will be less fortunate: the war of 1657-1660 will be a real disaster and Denmark will lose Scania, the east bank of the Sund, as well as the large island of Gotland, in the Baltic Sea. History of Denmark.

Supremacy in the North then passes into the hands of Sweden. Denmark, eager for revenge, naturally allies itself to Peter the Great of Russia against Charles XII of Sweden. Despite the victory, the Danish kingdom, led by Frederick IV, will come out bloodless from the Great Northern War (1700-1721) and during the eighteenth century will be kept out of European conflicts.

This wise policy allows the Dano-Norwegian state to face a flourishing period, which, with the favor of the Franco-British wars, will see its trade develop on all the seas. Commercial emporiums were opened in the Indies, Africa and the Antilles and, in 1792, the Danish flag represented the fourth merchant navy in the world. The war fleet, also respectable, will conduct operations against pirates, bombing Algiers in 1700 and Tripoli in 1797.

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But Britain is now exercising ever tighter and more imperious control of the seas. It wants to prevent France from sourcing shipbuilding equipment (wood, iron, copper, hemp) in northern Europe. In 1799, a Danish frigate escorting a merchant convoy was forced to open fire on a Royal Navy vessel. Over time these kinds of incidents tend to multiply and Denmark begins to concert with Russia and Sweden. History of Denmark.

The neutral countries intended to make England respect the principles of international law: the flag “covers” the merchandise. But London reacts with a preventive war operation and on April 2, 1801, the English admiral Horatio Nelson destroys a part of the Danish fleet at anchor in the harbor of Copenhagen.

During the Napoleonic Wars, the Danish fleet will constitute a considerable stake and Denmark will be forced to side with one or the other side of the war. By now the struggle had turned into an all-out war and there was no longer any place for neutral countries. In 1807, a British ultimatum to Denmark demanded the delivery of the fleet. Faced with danish refusal, the British reacted brutally with an amphibious operation and a bombing of the capital Copenhagen, during which a thousand homes were set on fire and 70 ships were captured, including 18 vessels of the line.

Denmark, in the face of this humiliation, allied itself with Napoleon Bonaparte and Danish troops were integrated into the corps of Marshal Louis Nicolas Davout, who then expressed very positive judgments towards them. After the defeat at Leipzig, the Danish troops retreated to Holstein, pursued by the Russians and prussians, while the Swedes had joined the anti-French coalition. After an honorable resistance, King Frederick VI, the last ally of France, signed on January 14, 1814, the Peace of Kiel. With this treaty Denmark renounces its rights over Norway in favour of the King of Sweden.

England settles at the Base of Helgoland in the North Sea and, eventually, Denmark is forced to join the Allied coalition against Napoleon. In this context, a Danish brigade will be sent to France after the Battle of Waterloo, where it will participate in the occupation of the Calais Pass area. History of Denmark. 

The duchies of Schleswig and Holstein are old Danish territories, theaters of numerous battles. During the Three Years’ War (1848-1851), the Danish army faced an insurrection backed by the army of the German Confederation. Although Denmark manages to win with great difficulty, the issue is not definitively resolved. In 1864, taking advantage of the succession opened by the death of King Frederick VII, Bismarck’s Prussia, supported by Austria, attempted revenge. History of Denmark. 

Prussians and Austrians, using the new railway network to increase the mobility of the troops, invade Denmark and on April 18 of the same year, after an artillery preparation, which sees the Krupp guns enter history, as many as 61 thousand coalition storm the Danish trenches of Dybbol. The mill of this locality, taken and filmed several times, is the witness of these fierce fights. It still dominates a vast plain, here just as famous as that of Waterloo. History of Denmark. 

The Danes will leave you on the ground as many as 5,600 men. Despite the naval victory of Helgoland, the Danish king will be forced to ask for peace and to cede the famous duchies he owned in a personal capacity, namely a million inhabitants, of which at least 200 thousand closely linked to Denmark. History of Denmark. 

History of Copenhagen
History of Copenhagen

Denmark During the First World War

 Denmark managed to maintain its neutrality, although, at times, it was forced to adapt to Berlin’s wishes. Between the British maritime blockade and German submarine warfare, the country will lose 324 merchant ships and 722 sailors. Moreover, 30,000 Danes from Schleswig will be forced to fight under the German uniform and of these 3,900 will lose their lives. After 1924 the remains of a number of them were gathered in the cemetery of Braine, near Soissons in France. There were also 85 Danish volunteers in the Foreign Legion, of whom about thirty died for France, have their monument in Rueil-Malmaison.

The Treaty of Versailles, intended to weaken Germany, had provided for the organization of a plebiscite in Schleswig. The consultation was held in 1920 under the aegis of an Allied Commission chaired by a French, Paul Claudel. Northern Schleswig votes overwhelmingly for Denmark and becomes part of the Danish kingdom. Southern Schleswig, on the other hand, votes in favor of Germany and remains, together with Holstein, within the Reich. History of Denmark. 

As is known, on 9 April 1940 Denmark was occupied by the Wehrmacht and this invasion was preceded by an ultimatum ordering the 3.7 million Danes not to resist. Contrary to what has been written, the kingdom does not surrender without firing a shot: units of the small Danish army fight in different locations, with 26 soldiers killed in battle. After Germany’s commitment to respect the political independence of the country, King Christian X and the government bowed to the wishes of the Reich. History of Denmark. 

Denmark, in exchange for its cooperation, continues to enjoy a certain degree of autonomy, obtaining the organization of democratic elections and the possibility of judging its resistance before its courts, while the army is reduced to only 33 thousand men.

Germany will be able to find volunteers in Denmark

 to fight against Bolshevism. It is true that, since 1919, as many as 213 Danes had left to fight the Red Army on the occasion of Estonia’s independence. Similarly in 1939-1940 another 1,200 Danes volunteered to fight against the USSR in the units of Finland, invaded by the Soviets. Nordic solidarity, a taste for adventure and anti-communism were, therefore, the motivations that allowed to enlist a Franco-Danish corps destined to fight on the Russian front. History of Denmark. 

At the end of 1941 there were 1500 first volunteers, including 77 officers of the royal army, part of the Frikorps Danmark. In total, about 6 thousand Danes fought in German uniforms, framed in the SS Nordland Division, then practically almost annihilated in January 1945.
On August 29, 1943, by order of King Christian X and the government, who had decided to break with the occupier, the Danish war fleet sank itself. Of the 52 ships, 32 will be sunk, 2 were in Greenland, 4 reach neutral Sweden and only 14 will be captured by the Germans.

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Once again a bloody episode in the struggle for freedom. Numerous Danish patriots, who fled to neighboring Sweden, helped to form a brigade that, by the end of 1944, already counted 4,800 men. Other Danes will reach the resistance of the interior, which in the course of the conflict will lose 850 men, while a thousand Danes will manage to reach England and continue the fight alongside the Allies.
England, following the German invasion of Denmark, had reacted as early as April 12, 1940, occupying the Faroe Islands and blocking two-thirds of the Danish merchant fleet. History of Denmark. 

From that moment, it will sail on behalf of the Allies and as many as 1850 Danish sailors will lose their lives in the Battle of the Atlantic.
In 1941, the United States established a de facto “provisional protectorate” over Greenland, installing some air bases there. The Americans will also ensure that Iceland breaks, in 1944, the last ties with Denmark, declaring its independence. Finally, on May 5, 1945, Denmark was liberated by British troops.

The Majority of Danes would, At That Point

Have preferred to adopt a policy of non-alignment, but the worsening east-west conflict and the Cold War will force them to give it up. Old resistors and soldiers have organized themselves to create a solid anti-communist network. The bitter experiences of past history clearly indicated the need for a strong alliance, just at the moment when the Soviets, who occupied the Danish island of Bornholm at that time, began to become threatening. Denmark then sides with the Western camp. History of Denmark. 

A Danish brigade is deployed in Germany and the Danish kingdom joins the Atlantic Alliance in 1949. The current Secretary General of NATO is, moreover, the Danish Anders Fogh Rasmussen. The latter, heir to Uffe Ellemann-Jensen, Danish foreign minister from 1982 to 1993, learned from his teacher that a small country like Denmark can only play an important role by actively participating in NATO.

It is no coincidence that Jensen had been able to convince a reticent public opinion to engage in the First Gulf War. Jensen, by the way, was nominated for the post of Secretary General of NATO in 1995, but president French Jacques Chirac, who saw in him “the man of the Americans”, vetoed it. Rasmussen, prime minister from 2001 to 2009, continued The traditional Danish policy of alignment with Washington. History of Denmark.

Danish Fashion People And Culture

People and Fashion in Denmark: Danish culture has developed over centuries. The culture of Denmark not only includes extraordinary sights and landscapes, but also the way of life of the people plays an important role. Cheerfulness, cosiness and the preservation of Danish traditions characterize everyday life. Find out everything you need to know about the inhabitants and regions of Denmark! History of Denmark Culture.

Fashion Of Denmark
Fashion Of Denmark: Denmark history and culture

Carnival in Denmark

History of Denmark Carnival: The carnival custom came to Denmark around the 13th century. The “Fastelavn” can be translated as “Fastenabend” and is not so dissimilar to the German Carnival. In Aalborg a great carnival takes place every year.


A Short History of Denmark in the 20th Century

Margaret II has been Queen of Denmark since 1972, her son is Crown Prince Frederik. Denmark is part of the European Union, but has retained the Danish krone as its currency instead of the euro. According to various studies, the inhabitants of the country are among the happiest people in the world and Denmark is still one of the most popular travel destinations for Germans. History of Denmark.

Today Denmark History
Today Denmark History Timeline
Is GreenLand is Part of Denmark?

Greenland is an autonomous constituent country within the Danish Kingdom. Greenland is geographically situated in North American continent but geopolitically it is a island of Europe. The country has its own parliament. Since 1979, Greenland has had greater autonomy. However, its foreign policy and security are still controlled by Denmark.

The native population of Greenland migrated to Greenland from Canada around 1000 BC. There is long history of Greenland how it was ruled by inhabitants from different countries for thousands of years. In recent times, Greenland was originally ruled by Norway after union of Denmark and Norway was dissolved in 1814.

There was a brief controversy between Denmark and Norway over Greenland. In 1933 both countries agreed to bring the matter Permanent Court of International Justice, which ruled in favor of Denmark. Thus Greenland became a colony of Denmark. In 1953, the colonial status was abolished and Greenland became a Danish county ruled by Copenhagen.

Today, the country is mostly ruled by itself and the queen of Denmark has no power over Greenland.

Greenland is not a part of Denmark, but it is one of the three constituent countries of the Kingdom of Denmark, aka the Danish Realm. The other two countries is the Faroe Islands and Denmark. Greenland has had self rule since 1979.

Historically, Greenland was tied with Denmark after the unitary state Denmark-Norway was dissolved in 1814. Norway was ceded to Sweden by the Treaty of Kiel which put a final end to the Napoleonic Wars. The Norwegian dependencies Greenland, Iceland and the Faroe Islands was ceded to Denmark.

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