Denmark, 1513-1660: The Rise and Decline of a Renaissance by Paul Douglas Lockhart

By Paul Douglas Lockhart

One of many biggest states in Europe and the best of the Protestant powers, Denmark within the 16th and 17th centuries used to be on the peak of its effect. Embracing Norway, Iceland, parts of southern Sweden and northern Germany, the Danish monarchy ruled the very important Baltic alternate. although, its geopolitical significance some distance handed its modest assets. Paul Douglas Lockhart examines the quick and maybe not likely occupation of Denmark because the significant energy of northern Europe, exploring its upward thrust to the leading edge of eu affairs and its next decline in fortunes following its disastrous involvement within the Thirty Years' conflict. utilizing the newest learn from Danish and different Scandinavian students Lockhart makes a speciality of key matters, from the dynamic function of the Oldenburg monarchy in bringing approximately Denmark's ''European integration'', to the influence of the Protestant Reformation on Danish tradition. The multi-national personality of the Danish monarchy is explored in-depth, specifically how the Oldenburg kings of Denmark sought to set up their authority over their sizable-and sometimes contentious-Norwegian, Icelandic, and German minorities. Denmark's participation in overseas politics and trade can also be investigated, in addition to the ability fight among Denmark and its rival Sweden over Baltic dominion, and the Danes' special approach to inner governance.

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Sample text

To govern Sweden in his absence, he appointed a regency council, headed by one Didrik Slagheck, a German in his service who had formerly been a papal secretary. Slagheck, who had played a leading role in the Bloodbath, proved to be a brutal incompetent whose actions alienated even his fellow regents. Yet Christian rewarded him with lucrative ecclesiastical posts all the same, and punished those who spoke out against him. The Bloodbath and the Slagheck regency spurred many Swedes into even more dogged resistance.

Precisely why Christian II allowed this to happen to his loyal if unprincipled servant is unknown, but he may have seen Slagheck as a convenient scapegoat. ¹⁵ Slagheck’s death did not satisfy the Council, and events outside the kingdom only served to exacerbate the civil discord in Denmark. In Sweden, the Vasa rebellion showed no signs of weakening, and the Hanseatic towns had grown hostile towards Denmark. The Hanse sympathized with Gustav Vasa and resented Christian II’s embargo on Hanseatic trade with Sweden.

The liaison between the heir apparent and a mere burgher’s daughter must have raised a few eyebrows, but the Danish nobility was far more troubled by another member of the king’s household: Dyveke’s mother, Sigbrit Willemsson, more familiar to Danes as Mother (Mor) Sigbrit. ⁶ Nonetheless, the first seven years of the reign proceeded without incident. Mother Sigbrit advised the king, informally, on matters of trade and finance, and nurtured his fondness for the Dutch, but in general Christian worked closely with leading Danish noblemen.

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