21 September 2017

Author Olav Duun's childhood home and grave

Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway are currently paying a county visit to Nord-Trøndelag. Today they arrived at the island of Jøa in the municipality of Fosnes, where they among others visited the childhood of the author Olav Duun (1876–1939). On the Royal Court's official website you will find will find an article about today's visit to Jøa as well as photos from the country tour. See also NRK.no.

Duun was born at the farm Stein nearby, but lived at Øver-Dun farm at Ramnfjellaksla from he was 7-8 years old until he was 25. After he married Emma Møller (1881–1970) in 1908, he lived in Botne in Vestfold county (Botne became a part of Holmestrand municipality in 1964). He died in Tønsberg in 1939 and was buried at Dun Cemetery at Jøa near his childhood home.

I visited Jøa and Olav Duun's childhood home two years ago. Here are some photos of the farm Øver-Dun and Dun Church and Cemetery.





For no particular reason I never took photos of the entrance side of the house. But you you can see one photo of the Crown Prince couple in the door opening here.

 The Olav Duun memorial behind the farm house.



From the back side of the headstone you can actually spot Olav Duun's childhood home.


The first church at Dun was consecrated in 1900. It burnt down in 1944. The present church was consecrated 5 years later.

All photos: © 2015 Dag Trygsland Hoelseth. 

6 September 2017

Denmark: Prince Henrik suffers from dementia

The Danish Royal Court issued today the following press statement concerning Prince Henrik's health:
It is with deep regret that Her Majesty The Queen has asked the Lord Chamberlain to announce:

Following a longer course of investigation, and most recently, a series of examinations conducted during late summer, a team of specialists at Rigshospitalet has now concluded that His Royal Highness Prince Henrik suffers from dementia.

The diagnosis implies a decline in The Prince’s cognitive functional level. The extent of the cognitive failure is, according to Rigshospitalet, greater than expected considering the age of The Prince, and can be accompanied by changes in behaviour, reaction patterns, judgement and emotional life and may therefore also affect the interaction with the outside world.

As a consequence of the diagnosis, The Prince will further downgrade his future activities, just as patronages and honorary memberships will be considered.

It is the wish of The Queen and the Royal Family that The Prince will have the peace and quiet as required by the situation. 
During her new year's speech in 2015, Queen Margrethe announced that Prince Henrik had decided to retire from his official duties as of January 2016. A few months later he decided to stop using his title «Prince Consort» and reverted to being «just» Prince Henrik. On 3 August 2017 the Danish Royal Court informed that the prince had requested «not to be buried in Roskilde Cathedral as otherwise planned». The reason for his rather surprising decision was that he felt he was discriminated against because he had not received the title of king (consort) and thus felt he was not on equal foot with his wife the queen. Following the press release, he made comments to the media saying among others that the queen had made a fool of him. Prince Henrik has been occupied with the idea of being titled as king consort for quite some time, but his rather erratic behaviour in August made many observers feel that something was wrong with him. Although one could understand the reasoning behind his demands, his way of punishing his wife was uncalled for. In other words, today's press release doesn't come as a big surprise, and his health situation obviously explains his behaviour to a large extent. It is just sad that the court didn't protect him better back in August, and equally sad that the media didn't follow the Danish set of principles concerning press ethics, as it was obvoious to most people that the prince needed to be protected against himself.

I also hope not only that the media now will respect Prince Henrik's need for peace and quiet, but also that the public will also remember his many years of tireless work for the good of Denmark.



4 September 2017

UK: The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting their third child

Just before the name of Prince Gabriel of Sweden was announced in the Council of State at Stockholm Palace today, the British Royal Court at Kensington Palace informed that Catherine, the wife of Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, was pregnant again:
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting their third child

Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are very pleased to announce that The Duchess of Cambridge is expecting their third child.

The Queen and members of both families are delighted with the news.

As with her previous two pregnancies, The Duchess is suffering from Hyperemesis Gravidarum. Her Royal Highness will no longer carry out her planned engagement at the Hornsey Road Children's Centre in London today. The Duchess is being cared for at Kensington Palace.
As far as I know no information has been revealed about the due date, but obviously the duchess is less than 12 weeks pregnant, so the baby will be born some time in the spring of 2018.

The ducal couple's first child, Prince George, was born in 2013, while the second child, Princess Charlotte, arrived in 2015.

Sweden: HRH Prince Gabriel Carl Walther, Duke of Dalarna

In the Council of State held at Stockholm Palace today it was announced (*) that Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia's son, who was born on Thursday 31 July 2017, had received the name Gabriel Carl Walther. It was also announced his first given name Gabriel was to be his call name. He had also received the title Duke of Dalarna.

When I commented on the name possibilities on Thursday, I said that everything was possible. That was why I argued, with my tongue in cheek, that Alfred was a good alternative for the newborn prince. It would go well together with his brother Alexander's name  as well. I was certain, however, that Folke would be one of the names, as the three earlier princes of the present generation – Nicolas (Paul Gustaf), Oscar (Carl Olof) and Alexander (Erik Hubertus Bertil) – all had got one of their names from their grandfather King Carl Gustaf Folke Hubertus. But I was wrong on that as well.

In the end no-one had guessed Gabriel for the baby prince's call name. No members of the Bernadotte family have the name Gabriel. But in the European Royal Family we have Prince Gabriel of Belgium – second child of King Philippe – and Prince Gabriel of Nassau, eldest son of Prince Louis. So in other words not a tradtional Swedish royal name, but something the parents opted out of personal preference. They might have felt that as Prince Gabriel was far down in the line of succession, they were less bound by tradition. Then again, Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel were not so committed to royal traditions when they named their first child Estelle... Prime minister Stefan Löfven said that the prince «without any doubt was a little Gabriel», whatever he meant by that.

Gabriel is a common name in Sweden, but not among the most popular names. According to Statistiscs Sweden, 341 boys received the name Gabriel last year, which resulted in a 42nd place. All in all 17 709 men in Sweden have the name Gabriel, while 10 297 men has Gabriel as their call name.

It should be added that there have been a few surprises earlier as well. Just think about Prince Sigvard and Prince Lennart. The name Gabriel, even though it is not a traditional Swedish royal name, will work well, and it goes well together with Alexander too, I think.

The second name Carl is of course a very popular royal name in Swedish history. It is part of the current king's name, and is also the second name of Prince Gabriel's first cousin Prince Oscar. The third name Walther obviously comes from Queen Silvia's father Walther Sommerlath (1901–1990). One of her brothers also has the name Walther.

Many had guessed that Prince Gabriel would receive the ducal title of Dalarna, because his mother Princess Sofia grew up there. Then again, so did many before Prince Alexander's title was announced. As Trond Norén Isaksen pointed out in his blog article today, it was actually «the first time that such personal connections are taken into consideration for the choice of dukedom». Isaksen wrote, by the way, an excellent article on Swedish Royal Dukedoms in Royalty Digest Quarterly no. 2, 2016.

Prince Gabriel is the third member of the Bernadotte dynasty to receive the title Duke of Dalarna. Previous dukes of Dalarna were Prince August (1831–1873) and Prince Carl Johan (1916–2012) until he lost his titles in 1946.

Following the birth of Prince Gabriel, the line of succession to the Swedish throne is as follows:
  1. Crown Princess Victoria (1977)
  2. Princess Estelle (2012)
  3. Prince Oscar (2016)
  4. Prince Carl Philip (1979)
  5. Prince Alexander (2016) 
  6. Prince Gabriel (2017)
  7. Princess Madeleine (1982)
  8. Princess Leonore (2014)
  9. Prince Nicolas (2015)
(*) English version of the announcement.

Updated on Tuesday 5 September 2017 at 09.30 (subject title standardization).

31 August 2017

Royal birth in Sweden: A son for Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia

The second child of Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia was expected to take place in September, but arrived already today. The Marshal of the Realm released the following press statement earlier today:
Announcement from the HE The Marshal of the Realm

The Office of The Marshal of the Realm is delighted to announce that HRH Princess Sofia gave birth to a healthy child Thursday the 31 August 2017 at 11.24am at Danderyd Hospital.

Both mother and child are in good health.

Svante Lindqvist
Marshal of the Realm
Just like when the newborn baby's brother Prince Alexander was born, the sex of the child was not revealed until Prince Carl Philip held a press conference. That event took place at Danderyd Hospital around 3 p.m., and the court released another press statement:
Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia have had a son

On Thursday 31 August at 11.24 am, Princess Sofia gave birth to a son at Danderyd Hospital in Stockholm.

Weight: 3.400 gram
Length: 49 cm

Both mother and child are in good health.

Prince Carl Philip was present at Danderyd Hospital throughout the birth. In the afternoon, Prince Carl Philip met the media at Danderyd Hospital.
Just like when Prince Alexander and Prince Nicolas (the second child of Princess Madeleine and Chris O'Neill) were born, midwife Anna Ståhl and birth doctor Sophia Brismar Wendel assisted the birth.

The newborn prince is no. 6 in the line of succession to the Swedish throne, after his brother Prince Alexander, but before his aunt Princess Madeleine. The prince is King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia's fourth grandson and sixth grandchild.

The happy event was marked by a salute – 21 shots – from the salute stations in Boden, Härnösand, Karlskrona and Gothenburg at 6 p.m.

The court has also informed that a Council of State, in which the name and ducal title will be announced, and a service of thanksgiving («Te Deum»), will take place on Monday 4 September 2017 at the Royal Palace.

The name guessing has of course already started. It has been rather difficult to predict the names of the royal babies in Sweden. Prince Oscar, the son of Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel, was perhaps the exception. So it is not easy to say what to expect. Everything is possible! I have said many times before that my personal preference would be a traditional Swedish royal name – and now I am first of all thinking about the name to be used daily – or at least a traditional European royal name. Alternatively a name with Swedish/Norse roots. So I was actually quite pleased with choice of the name Alexander for Prince Carl Philip's eldest son. I have read that many have mentioned William – or Wilhelm – as a possibility. I agree that the name would go well together with Alexander. In the Facebook group Royalty Digest Quarterly I suggested – just for fun, mind you – the name Alfred and the ducal title Dalarna. At least Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh, was a distant relative of the newborn baby. And I think Alfred would go well with Alexander. I am confident, however, that I will be wrong on at least one of the guesses, probably on both accounts.

What about the other names? An interesting point, as made by Robert Warholm at the Facebook group Kungligt forum back in 2016, is that the three earlier princes Nicolas (Paul Gustaf), Oscar (Carl Olof) and Alexander (Erik Hubertus Bertil) all have got one of their names from their grandfather King Carl Gustaf Folke Hubertus. So I think that we can expect Folke as one of the given names. Princess Sofia's grandfathers were named Stig and Janne Herbert, just to mention it. So, how about Alfred Wilhelm Herbert Folke?!

Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia could be influenced by the current trends. According to Statistics Sweden, these were the most popular names for the boys born in 2016:
  1. Oskar 879
  2. Lucas 864
  3. William 850
  4. Liam 790
  5. Oliver 700
  6. Hugo 688
  7. Alexander 668
  8. Elias 664 
  9. Charlie 650 
  10. Noah 627

27 August 2017

Sweden: Princess Madeleine and Christopher O'Neill to become parents for the third time

The Swedish Royal Court announced today that Princess Madeleine and her husband Christopher O'Neill are expecting their third child in March 2018:
HRH Princess Madeleine and Mr Christopher O'Neill are expecting a child

HRH Princess Madeleine and Mr. Christopher O'Neill are delighted to announce that The Princess is expecting their third child.

The Princess is feeling well and the birth is expected to take place in March 2018.
The couple's first child, Princess Leonore, was born in New York City on 20 February 2014. The second child, Prince Nicolas, was born on 15 June 2015.

Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia are expected to become parents again for the second time in September, which means that the March child will become King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia's seventh grandchild.

In other words, the Swedish royal house is blessed with many princes and princesses. The king has decided that all his grandchildren will receive the title of Prince or Princess as well as a ducal title. In the next generation I expect that the royal titles will be reserved for the grandchildren of Crown Princess Victoria.

13 July 2017

Romslektenes hærverk på gravminner i Oslo

Sist søndag kveld skrev jeg en kort bloggartikkel etter besøket mitt på Alfaset gravlund i Oslo tidligere på dagen. Under besøket passerte jeg gravfeltet til romslektene i Norge og oppdaget at graven til Marina Jansen var blitt utsatt for hærverk. Jeg har siden forsøkt å få klarhet i når dette kan ha skjedd, men har ikke fått noen svar. Jeg nevnte at også Karoli-graven på Vestre gravlund  var blitt utsatt for hærverk ved minst et par anledninger, og at jeg kanskje ville komme tilbake til dette ved leilighet. Her følger noen bilder fra Vestre gravlund tatt med års mellomrom samt bilder fra Alfaset gravlund tatt i 2016 og i dag.

 01. Graven til Polykarp og Lola Karoli, Vestre gravlund, Oslo, august 2005.

 02. Graven til Polykarp og Lola Karoli, Vestre gravlund, Oslo, august 2005.

 03. Graven til Polykarp og Lola Karoli, Vestre gravlund, Oslo, april 2007.

 04. Graven til Polykarp og Lola Karoli, Vestre gravlund, Oslo, mai 2015.

05. Dronningkrone skal det være! Graven til Polykarp og Lola Karoli, Vestre gravlund, Oslo, mai 2015.

 06. Graven til Polykarp og Lola Karoli, Vestre gravlund, Oslo, juli 2017.

 07. Graven til Polykarp og Lola Karoli, Vestre gravlund, Oslo, juli 2017.

 08. Graven til Polykarp og Lola Karoli, Vestre gravlund, Oslo, juli 2017.

 09. Malepenselen lå igjen etter gravskjendningen på graven til Polykarp og Lola Karoli, Vestre gravlund, Oslo, juli 2017.

 10. Graven til Milos og Lisa Jansen, Alfaset gravlund, Oslo, april 2016.

 11. Graven til Milos og Lisa Jansen, Alfaset gravlund, Oslo, april 2016.

 12. Graven til Milos og Lisa Jansen, Alfaset gravlund, Oslo, 12. juli 2017.

 13. Graven til Milos og Lisa Jansen, Alfaset gravlund, Oslo, 12. juli 2017.

 14. Graven til Marina Josef, Alfaset gravlund, Oslo, 12. juli 2017.


15. Navneplaten på graven til Marina Josef, Alfaset gravlund, Oslo, 12. juli 2017.

 16. Gravplaten på graven til Marina Josef, Alfaset gravlund , Oslo, 12. juli 2017.

17. Graven til Frans Josef (1919–1989), Alfaset gravlund, Oslo, 12. juli 2017.

Den såkalte sigøynerdronningen, Lola Karoli, f. 1929, døde i 1996 og ble gravlagt på Vestre gravlund i et eget gravkammer. Ifølge romfolkets gravtradisjon kan ikke kisten berøre jord og derfor har romfolket fått tillatelse til å bygge egne gravkamre. Lolas ektefelle, Polykarp Karoli, på gravplaten (se for eksempel bilde 02), stod det forresten Polikina, døde i 2001 og ble gravlagt samme sted. Man kan se bilder fra begravelsen blant annet i en reportasje TV2.no skrev etter gravskjendingen i 2010. Lola og Polykarp var forresten folkeregistrert under navnene Eva og Pål Karlsen, jf. Gravferdsetatens offentlige register (Begravdeioslo.no).

Under studietiden jobbet jeg en sommer som gartner på Vestre gravlund, men det var før Lola Karoli døde. Senere har jeg besøkt gravlunden med jevne mellomrom for å ta bilder for diverse slektsartikler og andre slektsforskningsprosjekter, samt for å besvare såkalte «photo requests», bildeønsker, på nettsiden Findagrave.com. Jeg har derfor passert og/eller stukket innom Karoli-graven flere ganger.

Natt til 17. mai 2010 ble gravmonumentet utsatt for hærverk. Som man kan se av TV2.no's reportasje ble «gravhodet» revet over ende og tilsølt med maling. Ifølge reportasjen skal et motiv for udåden ha vært at «gravrøvere ville plyndre sigøynerdronningen», ettersom ryktet gikk på at Lola «skal ha hatt gull og diamanter for mellom to og tre millioner kroner i kisten da hun ble gravlagt». Jeg er nok litt skeptisk til disse påstandene, men når noe blir gjentatt ofte nok, ender de som regel opp med å bli en vedtatt sannhet. Den eller de som stod bak gravskjendingen lyktes ikke i sitt forehavende, men sørget altså for betydelige ødeleggelser.

«Romfolket mener å vite hvem som står bak gravskjendingen – en tidligere straffedømt mann som tilhører en konkurrerende romfamilie», kunne TV2.no fortelle. Om dette gjaldt et medlem av Jansen-familien, dvs. etterkommere etter Polykarp Karolis yngre bror Milos Jansen (1928–2001), eller et medlem av Josef-familien, har jeg ikke fått klarhet i. Konfliktene, som flere ganger har utartet seg til voldelige sammenstøt mellom de nevnte familiene, har som kjent pågått i mange år.

Når det gjelder gravmonumentet, så passerte jeg det under minst ett gravlundsbesøk mens gravhodet fortsatt lå ved siden av, men jeg tok dessverre aldri bilde av det. Bildene tatt i 2015 dokumenterer i hvert fall at fotoet av Lola Karoli, fotoet av Polykarp Karoli og et fellesfoto var borte, det samme var gravplaten med navnet til Polykarp. Som overhode for Karoli-familien var han en omstridt person, og man tenkte kanskje at det å fjerne navneplaten ville virke preventivt.

16. juni 2017 ble gravmonumentet utsatt for hærværk nok en gang, noe både NRK.no/Østlandssendingen og Aftenposten har skrevet om. Jeg tok bilder av gravmonumentet i går. Som man kan se lot gjerningspersonene malepenselen ligge igjen. Ifølge en representant for Jansen-familien skal hærværket ha vært en hevnaksjon for at farens gravstein var blitt tauet bort. Han vistge altså til gravmomumentet til Milos Jansen på Alfaset gravlund. Jeg må innrømme at jeg ikke la merke til at noe hadde skjedd med Jansen-graven på Alfaset da jeg besøkte gravlunden sist søndag, mest fordi gravskjendingen av Marina Josefs grav var så iøynefallende. Jeg besøkte Alfaset igjen onsdag ettermiddag og så nå at gravhodet var blitt revet ned, men det skulle ikke være noe stort problem å få det på plass igjen. Jeg vet ikke når dette bortauingsforsøket fant sted, men antar at det skjedde i våres en gang. Bilde 10 og 11 over viser hvordan gravmonumentet så ut i april 2016. Den gangen var det faktisk et gravhode tilhørende et annet medlem av Jansen-familien som var blitt revet ned, men jeg lar det ligge nå.

Jeg vet fortsatt ikke hva som ligger bak gravskjendingen av Marina Josefs grav. Det kan godt tenkes at også hun var blitt utsatt for en hevnaksjon som følge av konflikten(e) mellom familiene, men slik jeg har forstått hadde det ikke sammenheng med den pågående konflikten mellom Karoli- og Jansen-familiene. Kanskje vi får vite mer etter hvert.

Noen har besøkt Josef-graven etter at jeg skrev om gravskjendingen søndag, for da jeg var der onsdag ettermiddag var det delvis ryddet opp. Så får vi håpe at familiene nå besinner seg. Det er ille nok at de har latt stridighetene pågå i så mange år, men det er uverdig at de også skal gå løs på gravminnene. Det må det bli slutt på!

Postskript 13. juli 2017 kl. 19.05, endret 14. juli 2017 kl. 09.55. Diverse søk på ulike nettsider og sosiale medier har ledet meg til å tro at hærverket som gravmonumentet til Marina Josef er blitt utsatt for må ha skjedd nokså nylig, kanskje så sent som lørdag kveld. Man kan ellers undre seg litt over at gravskjendingen ikke har fanget nyhetenes interesse på samme måte som tilsølingen av Karoli-graven på Vestre gravlund gjorde, men nå er det vel så at Karoli-slekten er bedre kjent i norsk media enn Josef-slekten, og Vestre gravlund er litt nærmere «begivenhetenes sentrum» enn det Alfaset gravlund er.

De tre største norske romslektene – Karoli, Jansen og Josef (Karoli og Jansen utgår fra to brødre, så de kan også regnes som én slekt) – teller rundt 5–600 medlemmer (jeg har også sett tallet 800), så det er ikke like enkelt å få god nok oversikt over familiene. Det gjør det heller ikke lettere at de norske romer ofte opptrer med forskjellige navn – de folkeregistrerte navnene er ikke nødvendigvis de samme som de bruker innad i miljøet, og i tillegg kommer eventuelle kallenavn. Polykarp Karoli var folkeregistrert som Pål Karlsen, og mange medlemmer har skiftet folkeregistrerte navn én eller flere ganger. Den avdøde Čugurka Karoli, broren til Polykarp og Milos, hadde barn med helt andre etternavn. Med andre ord, det er ikke lett å plassere Marina Josef, og uten godt nok kildebelegg vil jeg ikke spekulere for mye utad, men jeg kan ikke lenger si at det er umulig at gravskjendingen av Marinas grav ikke hadde forbindelser til tilsølingen av Karoli-graven.

Det er ikke annet ennå forsøke å nøste opp i havet av kilder som tross alt finnes og se om det er mulig å skaffe seg en bedre oversikt etter hvert. Jeg har i mange år vært interessert i de norske romslektenes historie, både fra eldre og nyere tid, og har samlet mye materiale opp gjennom årene, men har ennå ikke gått så systematisk gjennom det. Jeg vet at også andre historikere og slektsforskere har jobbet mye og godt med slektshistorien. Jeg har drevet med slektsforskning i mange år, og har de siste årene også fungert som administrator for og bidragsyter til Slektshistoriewiki. Hovedutfordringen min har lenge vært at jeg synes de aller fleste slektene er interessante og spennende, det være seg fyrsteslekter, adelsslekter, egne slekter, arbeiderslekter eller romslekter, for å gi noen eksempler. Derfor jobber jeg litt for ofte med litt for mange prosjekter på én gang. Men noe har jeg da fått fullført, og mer kommer ...

Når det gjelder gravskjendingen på Vestre gravlund i 2010, så skrev TV2.no vel 3 år senere at hærverket ikke hadde angivelig nedgravne edelstener som motiv, men skyldtes konflikten mellom Karoli- og Josef-slektene.

Oppdatert torsdag 13. juli 2017 kl. 13.30 (et par, tre ortografiske feil); torsdag 13. juli 2017 kl. 19.05 (postskript); sist gang fredag 14. juli 2017 kl. 09.55 (retting av ortografisk feil, tilføyelse av avsnitt). 

10 July 2017

Longest reigns page updated

On 21 June 2017 the King of Saudi Arabia issued a decree relieving his nephew Prince Mohammed bin Naif bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, b. 1959, of his duties as among others Crown Prince and replaced him by his own son, Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, b. 1985.

I had of course meant to update the Longest reigns page much earlier, but other tasks had to come first. I have also corrected the information about the heir to the throne of Bhutan, as Jigme Namgyel Wangchuck replaced his uncle, Jigyel Ugyen Wangchuck, when he was born on 5 February 2016. I follow the news of the King of Bhutan and his family through his Facebook page, but still failed to act on the royal birth at the time. But better late than never, as they say.

Hopefully the Longest reigns page is in better shape now. Please tell, either here or by e-mail, if you find other mistakes. The biggest challenge tonight is that my CoffeeCup html editor doesn't work properly, as it refuses to give me previews of the changes I make. I hope I will not have to update my website too many times tonight ...

Royalty Digest Quarterly no. 2, 2017

Historical tidbits of the royal houses of Sweden and Denmark dominate the latest issue of Royalty Digest Quarterly (no. 2, 2017). The front cover shows a painting of King Frederik VI of Denmark and Queen Marie Sophie with their daughters Wilhelmine (in the middle) and Caroline. The same image can also be found on page 25. In other words, Denmark has made it to the traditional Family Album this time, as always presented by periodical's historical consultant Charlotte Zeepvat. This album focuses on the history from the vikings to the House of Oldenburg, so I suppose that the House of Glücksburg will be covered in a later issue. The album contains, besides the introduction, a collection of all in all 85 images as well as three pages with genealogical surveys, covering the descendants of Frederik V.

The album is followed up by another article by Charlotte Zeepvat, A King for Denmark, where she makes a good effort in explaining the rather complicating history leading up to the election of Prince Christian of Glücksburg as heir to the Danish throne.

The first article in the present issue, howver, is titled Prince Gustaf Adolf - the lost generation and is written by Roger Lundgren. Prince Gustaf Adolf was of course the father of the present King Carl Gustaf of Sweden. Lundgren is know for among other things his biography on Prince Gustaf Adolf's wife Princess Sibylla, published in 2007.

The fourth Scandinavia-related article, Jomfru Fanny, is written by the editor Ted Rosvall himself.  Rosvall tells the story about the psychic Franziska Caroline Elise Enger (1805–1881), the daughter of an huntsman at the Mecklenburg estate of Vietow, Friedrich Enger, og the unmarried seamstress from the same estate, Christine Maria Margretha Heise. But was Friedrich the real father? Some wants to believe that she was the daughter of the then Prince Christian Frederik, later King Christian VII, and his then fiancée Princess Charlotte Frederikke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin ...

Normally the World Wide Web of Royalty column, bringing the latest genealogical news, comes at the end of the issue, but this time the editor has made an exception! More importantly, we are presented with news from  Austria and Hungary, Hohenlohe-Waldenburg-Schillingsfürst, Luxembourg,  Mountbatten, Russia, Sweden, Bourbon-Two Sicilies and Württemberg.

Following the genealogical news, Coryne Hall tells the story of Princess Maud of Fife in the series Little-known royals, before David Horbury presents the part 4 of letters from John Wimbles' collection of material from the Romanian National Archives and other sources.

Finally the readers are treated with a book review again. Hurray! Charlotte Zeepvat gives her thoughts on the book Royal Wills in Britain from 1509 to 2008 by Michael L. Nash (Palgrave Macmillian, 2017, ISBN 978-1-137-60144-5 (hardcover), 978-1-137-60145-2 (e-book). The book seems to be very interesting. But I wonder how well the book will sell, considering that it is priced at GBP 83,29 (e-book)/GBP 99,99 (hardcover).

Information on Royalty Digest Quarterly can be found at its editor's website Royalbooks.se. See earlier presentation of RDQ here. See also its Facebook page.

9 July 2017

Ramponert Josef-grav, Alfaset gravlund, Oslo

 Graven til Marina Josef, Alfaset gravlund, april 2016.
 Graven til Marina Josef, Alfaset gravlund, april 2016.
 Graven til Marina Josef, Alfaset gravlund, juli 2017.
 Graven til Marina Josef, Alfaset gravlund, juli 2017.

Graven til Marina Josef, Alfaset gravlund, juli 2017.

Flere medlemmer av de norske romslektene Karoli og Josef med flere ligger gravlagt i et eget felt (001) på Alfaset gravlund i Oslo. Jeg har tatt bilder av gravene flere ganger – med gammelt og nytt kamera.

De to øverste bildene ble tatt i april 2016 av graven til Marina Josef (1960–2015). De tre nederste bildene ble tatt under dagens besøk, og som dere kan se er graven fullstendig ramponert. Jeg vet dessverre ikke når dette kan ha skjedd, men det gjør meg opprørt. Sannelig har det vært konflikter både mellom og innad i de norske romslektene, men at man tar med seg konflikten etter at en har gått bort er både trist og uakseptabelt. Som noen kanskje husker er også Karoli-graven på Vestre gravlund blitt ramponert minst et par ganger – i 2010 og i 2017. Etter gravskjendingen i 2010 ble gravmonumentet reparert, men samtidig ble Polykarp Karolis navn fjernet, slik at bare kona Lolas navn stod igjen. Jeg kan ev. komme tilbake med bilder av Karoli-graven tatt før og etter 2010 i en egen bloggartikkel.

Jeg har foreløbig ikke god nok oversikt over Josef-familien, så jeg kan ikke identifisere Marina Josef nærmere. Jeg antar dog at hun var enten en yngre datter, ev. barnebarn eller svigerdatter til Frans Josef (1919–1989). Ifølge boken En for hverandre. Sigøynerne Milos Karoli og Frans Josef forteller fra 1978 giftet Frans seg i 1940 med en jente ved navn Maria (av Modest-slekten? – her er ikke boken like klar) og fikk 13 barn med henne.

Postskript torsdag 13. juli 2017 kl. 19.10: Se også min senere artikkel publisert 13. juli 2017.

 Oppdatert torsdag 13. juli 2017 kl. 07.50 (presisering av mulige slektsforhold); torsdag 13. juli 2017 kl. 19.10 (siste avsnitt strammet inn, postskript tilføyd).

14 June 2017

Photo of King Harald V of Norway and the President of Palau

The Office of the President of Palau has heard my cry for help. As I wrote in late May, King Harald V of Norway granted the President of Palau, Tommy Remengesau, Jr., an audience at the Royal Palace in Oslo on 30 May 2017. President Remengesau was in Oslo in connection with a summit on illegal fishing. He also had a meeting with the Norwegian minister of foreign affairs Børge Brende. The two dignitaries signed an agreement on opening diplomatic relations between the two countries.

According to Royal Court's information department, the news/photo agency NTB Scanpix took photos in connection with the audience, but so far no newspapers or other media have published them. A pity, I thought, as the meeting between the two heads of state was after all an historic event.

But yesterday the Office of the President of Palau published a photo of the king and president at its Facebook page.The photo is taken in the Bird Room at the Royal Palace.

Thanks to the President for being so helpful. In connection with the blogging on the President's visit to Norway, I have read lots of information about Palau and its tourist sights and have become more and more determined to visit the islands one day!

9 June 2017

President of Palau once more

Last week I wrote about the President of Palau's visit to Norway in connection with a summit on illegal fishing. President Tommy Remengesau was received in audience at the Royal Palace on Tuesday 30 May. When preparing for the article, I learnt that NTB Scanpix had taken photos of the president together with King Harald, but still I haven't seen any photo of the event published anywhere.

Fortunately the Norwegian Foreign Office had a better understanding of the historic event as a photo of President Remengesau and minister of foreign affairs Børge Brende was published on 1 June 2017 after their meeting earlier in the week. Thre press release told that Norway and Palau had signed an agreement to open diplomatic relations. Brende said: – We have many common spheres of interest, among others international co-operation on climate, environment and sea management.

In addition to King Harald and minister of foreign affairs Brende, President Remengesau also met President of the Storting (Parliament) Olemic Thommesen and Minister of Climate and Environment Vidar Helgesen.

The above-mentioned summit was the first summit between the parties which had signed and ratified the Agreement on port state measures to prevent, deter and eliminate illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (the Harbour State Agreement) (text at Lovdata.no). According to the press release Palau has problems with illegal fishing in its exclusive economic zone. The president has personally fronted the work to achieve better control and management of the important fishing resources, and to keep (protect) the island state's marine biodiversity. The latter is also important for the country's tourist industry.

See also Norway Today 2 June 2017, Linkedin.com as well as the President's official Facebook page.

30 May 2017

President of Palau in Norway

King Harald of Norway granted today the President of Palau, Tommy Remengesau, an audience at the Royal Palace in Oslo. According to Royal Court's information department, the news/photo agency NTB Scanpix took photos at the event, but as far as I know no newspapers or other media have published them, and I am not willing to pay a large fee in order to publish a photo on my blog.

No published photo from the historical event is a pity, I think, as it is not every day King Harald meets a head-of-state from such a far-away country.* There is at present no information about the visit at the president's own Twitter account or the official website of the Government of Palau. But according to the Norwegian Foreign Office, President Remengesau is in Norway in connection  with a summit on illegal fishing. The president spoke at the summit yesterday, as is shown in tweets from the UN Food & Agriculture Organization's Fisheries & Aquaculture Department and Christian Laborda, former Head of Oceanic Dpt. MOFA Chile (see here and here). There is even a photo of President Remengesau together with the Norwegian Minister of Fisheries, Per Sandberg (Árni M. Mathiesen, Assistant Director-General, Fisheries and Aquaculture Department FAO, is also in the photo).

So what is to tell about President Thomas E. «Tommy» Remengesau? According to the official website he is in his fourth period as President. He was Vice President of Palau from 1993 to 2001, then President from 2001 to 2009 and after a break, because in accordance with the Constitution of Palau one cannot be elected for more than two consecutive periods, he regained the top position in 2013. The president, who is born in 1956, is married and has four children and five grandchildren. His father, Thomas O. Remengesau, b. 1929, served as acting President of Palau in 1985 (then in the capacity as Minister of Justice as the Vice President was abroad and had to return to take the oath) and as President from 1988 to 1989 and was the country's Vice President from 1985 to 1988. The short presidential history of Palau is kind of brutal. The first president, Haruo Remeliik, was assassinated in 1985, while the third president, Lazarus Salii, commited suicide in 1988.

*One could argue that photos from official royal events in a public building as the Royal Palace is, should be taken by the court's own photographers and be permitted to be published freely as long as credit is given, but I guess that is just the grumpy old me ...

18 May 2017

Princess Alexandra of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg and Count Jefferson von Pfeil und Klein-Ellguth to divorce

The Danish Royal Court annunced today that HSH Princess Alexandra of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg and her husband Count Jefferson-Friedrich von Pfeil und Klein-Ellguth have decided to divorce.

Princess Alexandra is the second child and eldest daughter of the late Prince Richard of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg and Princess Benedikte of Denmark. Princess Alexandra married Count Jefferson at Gråsten Palace on 6 June 1998. They have two children together, Friedrich, b. 1999 and Ingrid, b. 2003. For the last three years the couple has lived in Germany.

In the press statement Princess Alexandra has given the following comment:
«Det er en utrolig svær beslutning. Vi har kendt hinanden i 30 år, men er kommet til et punkt, hvor vi må erkende, at vi er vokset fra hinanden. Vi afslutter ægteskabet, men forbliver sammen i forældreskabet. Hele familien, men naturligvis mest børnene, er – nu også efter min fars død – i en meget sårbar situation, og vi beder derfor om ro og respekt omkring den proces, vi skal igennem.»

(«It is a very difficult decision. We have known each other for 30 years, but have reached a point, where we must admit that we have grown apart. We are ending the marriage, but will stay together in parenthood. The whole family, but especially the children are – also after my father's death – in a very vulnerable situation, and we ask for quiet and respect for the process we are going through.»)
The couple has not yet made a final decision about where they will settle in the future, but the children will continue at their school in Schleswig-Holstein.

14 May 2017

President Emmanuel Macron inaugurated: Longest reigns website updated

Emmanuel Macron, who was elected President of France last Sunday, 7 May 2017, was installed as the new president in a ceremony at Élysée Palace in Paris today. At the same time Macron became the new Co-Prince of Andorra.

I have therefore updated my Longest reigns website accordingly.

11 May 2017

Funeral service for Baron Niclas Silfverschiöld

The funeral service for Baron Niclas Silfverschiöld, who died on 11 April 2017, 82 years old, took place today at Erska Church at Sollebrunn in Alingsås municipality.

Attending the service were of course the late baron's widow Princess Désirée, Baroness Silfverschiöld and her immediate family. King Carl Gustaf, Queen Silvia, Crown Princess Victoria, Prince Daniel, Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia came directly from the celebrations in Oslo, and they were accompanied by Princess Märtha Louise, who represented the Norwegian royal house.

The Swedish Princesses Margaretha, Mrs. Ambler, Princess Birgitta and Princess Christina, Mrs. Magnuson and her husband Tord Magnuson and other family members were also present for the funeral service. According to Svensk Damtidning, the Danish Royal House was represented by Princess Benedikte. Princess Madeleine and her husband Chris O'Neill are currently in Florida, USA, and where thus unable to attend.

After the funeral service a reception took place at Koberg Palace.

So far it has not been revealed where Baron Niclas Silfverschiöld will be buried. One possibility is the Royal Burial Ground at Haga outside Stockholm. Another possibility is the Silfverschiöld family grave in Sahlgrenska gravkoret (the Sahlgren Grave Chapel) at Tölö Cemetery at Kungsbacka south of Gothenburg. Svensk Damtidning seems to suggest the latter in an article published today: «De närmaste fortsatte sedan till familjegraven för gravsättningen och just nu pågår mottagningen hemma hos familjen Silfverschiöld på Koberg.» («The closest [family members] continued to the family grave for the funeral and just now a reception is taking place at the Silfverschiöld's home at Koberg.») It takes about 1 hour and 10 minutes from Sollebrunn to Kungsbacka.

Updated on Thursday 11 May 2017 at 21:25 (more people in attendance were added, as well as information about the burial place).

9 May 2017

Official celebrations of the King and Queen of Norway


The official celebrations of the King and Queen of Norway, who both turn 80 this year, take place on Tuesday 9th and Wednesday 10th of May 2017. The celebrations include among others a gala banquet at the Royal Palace on Tuesday evening, a cruise with the royal yacht on Wednesday and the Norwegian Government's dinner at the Opera House on Wednesday evening.

The Royal Court has released the following list of heads of state and royals attending the celebrations:

Norway
  • Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit
  • Princess Märtha Louise
  • Princess Astrid, Mrs. Ferner
Denmark
  • Queen Margrethe II
  • Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary
  • Prince Joachim and Princess Marie (10 May only)
Sweden
  • King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia
  • Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel
  • Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia
**
  • Madeleine Kogevinas and Bernhard Mach
  • Desirée Kogevinas and Carlos Eugster
Luxembourg
  • Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria-Teresa
  • Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume and Hereditary Grand Duchess Stéphanie
Monaco
  • Prince Albert II
The Netherlands
  • King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima
  • Princess Beatrix
  • Prince Constantijn (9 May only) 
**
  • Princess Mabel of Orange-Nassau
Belgium
  • King Philippe and Queen Mathilde
Spain
  • King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia (10 May only)
United Kingdom
  • HRH The Countess of Wessex
**
  • Lady Elizabeth Shakerley
Greece
  • Queen Anne Marie
  • Crown Prince Pavlos and Crown Princess Marie-Chantal
  • Prince Nikolaos and Princess Tatiana
Finland
  • President Sauli Niinistö and Jenni Haukio
Iceland
  • President Guðni Th. Jóhannesson and Eliza Reid
All in all 183 guests were present at the Royal Palace on Tuesday. When the royals greeted the people from the balcony, all the grandchildren of the king and queen were present - Princess Ingrid Alexandra, Prince Sverre Magnus, Maud Angelica Behn, Leah Isadora Behn and Emma Tallulah Behn. They were also included in the official photo which was published on Tuesday night.

In addition to the royals and dignitaries above also representatives of the official Norway were present, and surely also other family members of the king and queen. I wasn't able to watch TV when the guests arrived, so I am not able to give more details at present. Further details about the celebrations can be found at the official website. For photos of some of the guests, go here.

Updated on Wednesday 10 May 2017 at 00:05 (one link replaced).

5 May 2017

King Harald and Queen Sonja 80 years' anniversary: Jubilee book published

King Harald turned 80 years old on 21 February, while Queen Sonja will be 80 on 4 July. Next week the official celebrations will take place with royal guests expected from all corners of Europe. in connection with the anniversary Aller Forlag has published a jubilee book titled Sonja & Harald. En kjærlighetshistorie («Sonja & Harald. A Love Story») (2017; ISBN: 9788232503223, softcover, 115 pages). The book costs NOK 149 (USD 17,19/Euro 15,68/GBP 13,28). The editor is Caroline Vagle, who is a royal reporter for the bi-weekly magazine Se og Hør.

The jubilee book covers Their Majesties' life before they met and their life together as Crown Prince and Crown Princess and later King and Queen. The contents:
  • Page 10: En prins er født («A Prince is born»)
  • Page 22: Borgerjenta («The commoner girl»)
  • Page 32: Sonja eller ingen («Sonja or no-one»)
  • Page 48: To blir fire («Two becomes four»)
  • Page 82: De eventyrlige reisene («The adventurous travels»)
  • Page 112: 80 ting du ikke vet («80 things you don't know»)
First of all it is a «table book» filled with great photos from a long public life together. I will report back if I come across any other similar jubilee books.

UK: Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh to retire

Photo: 2015 Aaron McCracken / Harrisons. Wikimedia Commons.

Yesterday morning I woke up to the news (*) that «The Queen's entire household [had been] called to Buckingham Palace for [an] 'highly unusual' emergency meeting» and rumours were circulating that a member of the royal family had died, with Prince Philip's name being mentioned more than others. The Sun even managed to report that Prince Philip had died. Soon it fortunately turned out that there was nothing extraordinary about the staff meeting, and that the senior royals were all well.

Later on Thursday 4 May, Buckingham Palace announced that Prince Philip, who turns 96 on 10 June, was to retire from public duty:
«HRH The Duke of Edinburgh

His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh has decided that he will no longer carry out public engagements from the autumn of this year. In taking this decision, The Duke has the full support of The Queen.

Prince Philip will attend previously scheduled engagements between now and August, both individually and accompanying The Queen. Thereafter, The Duke will not be accepting new invitations for visits and engagements, although he may still choose to attend certain public events from time to time.

The Duke of Edinburgh is Patron, President or a member of over 780 organisations, with which he will continue to be associated, although he will no longer play an active role by attending engagements.

Her Majesty will continue to carry out a full programme of official engagements with the support of members of the Royal Family.»
The Greek-born Prince Philip married the then Princess Elizabeth in 1947. Since 1952, The Duke of Edinburgh has carried out 22,191 solo engagements, we were told by Buckingham Palace's Twitter account. 22,191 solo engagements. No wonder that Prince Philip yesterday received praise from all corners of the world for his «70 Years as as Her Majesty's "Rock"». His retirement is well deserved. I would like you to read the following sentence once more, though: «[...] he may still choose to attend certain public events from time to time». In his 96th, soon 97th, year! And the Queen will carry on as usual with the support of the rest of her family ...

(*) The link goes to a Daily Mail article which was updated several times after the tweet was posted.


4 May 2017

Genealogen nr. 1, 2017

Genealogen nr. 1, 2017, medlemsbladet til Norsk Slektshistorisk Forening, kom i min postkasse i dag, og jeg tenkte at jeg skulle skrive en kort presentasjon av innholdet og deretter fortelle litt om mitt eget hovedbidrag. (Scroll down for an English summary of this blog article.)

Et bilde av innholdsfortegnelsen ble lagt ut på NSFs nettside i slutten av forrige måned da bladet var sendt til trykkeriet, men for søkbarhetens skyld gjengir jeg det mest sentrale innholdet her:
  • Formannens spalte: Hvor blir det av kildekritikken?
  • Ole Arild Vesthagen: Klokkerfamilien Berger i Gran på Hadeland – slektens opphav i Odalen
  • Jan Christensen: Rømning fra Skien fengsel i 1909
  • Petter Vennemoe: Manhaffte korporal Niels Christensen Krog – Rettelse
  • Jan Christensen: Karen Margrethe Elisabeth Storchs tragiske liv
  • Audun Lem: Tre løytnanter fra Sogn i krigen mot svenskene 1807–1814
  • Svein Henrik Pedersen: Noen eldre presteslekter i Trøndelag og Nord-Norge
  • Elin Galtung Lihaug: Slektsforholdene til Gunvor Galtung Haavik
  • Dag Trygsland Hoelseth: Brødrene Rosenbaum som tok slektsnavnet Rogg
I tillegg finner man referater, årsberetning for Norsk Slektshistorisk Forening 2016, regnskap m.m. Blant foreningsstoffet finner man også min lille oppsummering kalt «Status for Slektshistoriewiki» per midten av mars 2017. Selve wikien finner du her. Formannen nevnt over er Rune Nedrud, som også er hovedredaktør for medlemsbladet.

Nytt av året er at forfatterne av slektsartiklene har fått egne presentasjoner på samme måte som i Norsk Slektshistorisk Tidsskrift. Det synes jeg var en god idé. Hvorfor Audun Lem ikke kom med i presentasjonen, vet jeg ikke. Jeg har selv vært medlem i redaksjonen siden 2010, men har først og fremst beskjeftiget meg med korrekturlesing og har ikke hatt noe innflytelse på innholdet ellers, bortsett fra artiklene og annet stoff som jeg selv har bidratt med. Petter Vennemoe er heller ikke presentert, men hans bidrag denne gangen er en rettelse til artikkelen av samme navn i Genealogen nr. 2, 2016. Vennemoe var for øvrig bidragsyter til NSFs store prosjekt Eidsvollsmennene – Hvem var de? fra 2014, og man finner en presentasjon av ham der på side 274.

Ole Arild Vesthagen er en erfaren slektsforsker kjent blant annet for nettstedet Oavesthagen.no (Ole Arilds slektssider). Jan Christensen har drevet nettstedet Skien Genealogiske Side siden 1995. Elin Galtung Lihaug har sittet en årrekke som styremedlem i NSF og har blant annet vært redaktør for antologien Genealogica & Heraldica. Influence on Genealogy and Heraldry of Major Events in the History of a Nation. Proceedings of the XXXIst International Congress of Genealogical and Heraldic Sciences. Oslo 2014. Svein Henrik Pedersen er historiker og medforfatter av firebindsverket  Orkdalshistoria og for tiden medforfatter av Fosens historie, bind 2.

Mitt hovedbidrag denne gangen er altså artikkelen Brødrene Rosenbaum som tok slektsnavnet Rogg. Som tittelen antyder, så omhandler artikkelen brødrene Halvard, Karl Marius «Kalle» og Henry Conrad Rosenbaum, som i 1939 fikk Justisdepartementets bevilling til å anta slektsnavnet Rogg. I artikkelen fortalte jeg litt om hva som motiverte ønsket om navneskiftet og litt om navnebevillinger som kilde. I tillegg skrev jeg en liten presentasjon av de tre brødrene samt en kort genealogisk oversikt over de tre brødrene og deres nærmeste slektskrets, som inkluderte to halvsøstre, en antatt halvbror samt brødrenes foreldre Henry Conrad Rosenbaum (d.e.) (1878–1949) og Harriet Kristensen (1881–1965).

Jeg kom ikke helt i mål med genealogien – det var fortsatt noen uavklarte spørsmål som stod igjen ved deadline. Det skyldtes delvis at jeg kom litt for sent i gang med prosjektet (og det var jo navnebevillingen jeg først og fremst hadde tenkt å fokusere på), og delvis at jeg ikke var kreativ nok i letingen etter kilder. Etter at jeg leverte artikkelen, har jeg funnet ytterligere informasjon om slektskretsen, og som både utfyller og korrigerer artikkelen, så jeg håper jeg kan komme tilbake med en kort oppfølgerartikkel i neste utgave av Genealogen. Blant de nye funnene er at jeg har funnet både fødselsattesten til brødrenes far Henry Conrad (d.e.), som ble født i Edinburgh i Skottland i 1878, samt vielsesattesten til Henry Conrads foreldre Adolf (Adolph) Rosenbaum og Helle Johanne Nilsen. Dermed har jeg også navnet på Adolfs foreldre. Videre har jeg funnet korrekt fødested og fødselsår for Halvards kone Mary Alice. Dessuten har jeg funnet flere detaljer om den antatte halvbrorens mor, slik at det er mulig å avgrense letingen etter halvbroren til en kortere periode. Jeg har kommet over mer informasjon om halvsøsteren Constanse (Henry Conrads datter fra første ekteskap) i USA. Kanskje kan denne informasjonen lede til en løsning på spørsmålet om hvor det ble av Adolf og Johanne i USA? Jeg har dog foreløbig ikke funnet ut noe mer om halvsøsteren Magdalena Henriette, f. 1909, etter at hun giftet seg i 1928. Jeg jobber videre med alle de uavklarte spørsmålene, og håper som sagt å komme tilbake med en oppfølgerartikkel senere. Forhåpentligvis vil artikkelen i herværende utgave også føre til tips fra leserne?

Slektsforskning handler ikke bare om  systematisk leting i kilder. Av og til er det tilfeldighetene som rår også. Stor var nemlig overraskelsen da jeg under letingen etter dåpen til den antatte halvbroren til Rosenbaum/Rogg-brødrene kom over en dåpsoppføring der min oldefar Oscar var oppgitt å være faren. Fødselen fant sted 4 år før han giftet seg med min oldemor, og funnet har kommet som en stor overraskelse på hele slekten. Så har jeg enda et prosjekt å jobbe med i dagene og månedene fremover ...

Short English summary: This blog article is about the latest issue of Genealogen (no. 1, 2017), the newsletter of the Norwegian Genealogical Society. In addition to a presentation of the main articles, I give some details about my own contribution, Brødrene Rosenbaum som tok slektsnavnet Rogg («The Rosenbaum brothers who took the surname Rogg»), and new findings which will hopefully lead to another article about the Rosenbaum-Rogg family.

24 April 2017

The Norwegian Royal Court. Annual Report 2016

Last year I mentioned that the magazine Her og Nå had decided not to publish a yearbook about the events of the royal family like in previous years.  At the time of writing I hadn't come across any royal yearbooks by other publishers either. Later I found out  that Se og Hør had an inset in no. 50, 2016. It was only 24 pages long, though, and nothing compared to Her og Nå's Året rundt med Kongefamilien («The Year with the Royal Family») or the hardbacks titled Kongefamiliens årbok («The Royal Family's Yearbook») published in the late 1980s/early 1990s, besides the 2011 edition.

But at least we have the Norwegian Royal Court's annual report, which gives details about the activities of the Norwegian Royal Family and the operation of the Norwegian Royal Court during the year, including the accounts for the Civil List and surveys of orders and medals being awarded during a given year. The annual report for 2016 was published on Monday 24 April 2017 and is well illustrated. From the press release one can read:
Annual report 2016
The 25th anniversary of the accession to the Norwegian throne of Their Majesties King Harald and Queen Sonja was the major focus of 2016. The celebration started with a large winter festival in the Palace Square on 17 January and concluded with a garden party hosted by the King and Queen in the Palace Park for 1 500 guests from throughout Norway. In June, the King and Queen carried out a silver jubilee tour along the coast from Tromsø to Kristiansand on the Royal Yacht, Norge. 

In addition to the jubilee celebrations, the Royal Family has had an extensive official programme. Altogether, the members of the Royal Family took part in 740 official events in Norway and abroad. They have paid visits to 48 municipalities, all of Norway’s counties, Svalbard, and eleven different countries.

In the course of the busy summer weeks, more than 45 000 visitors attended the activities conducted under the auspices of “Åpent Slott” (cultural outreach activities).
Annual accounts

The accounts for the Civil List showed a surplus of NOK 6 628 814. Expenses in connection with the various jubilee celebrations are covered by previous appropriations.

The accounts for the staff of Their Royal Highnesses The Crown Prince and The Crown Princess showed a deficit of NOK 1 459 461. This deficit will be covered by previous appropriations.

The accounts for “Åpent Slott” showed a surplus of NOK 619 162. This surplus will be added to the equity capital.

The annual report and accounts of the Royal Court for 2016 were submitted today to the Presidium of the Storting, the Ministry of Local Government and Modernisation, and the Office of the Auditor General of Norway.
The annual reports from 2005 to 2016 are available at the official website. Not sure if the annual reports for 2002, 2003 and 2004 were ever published in an electronic format, but at least I have the paper editions.

As mentioned in the press release, King Harald celebrated 25 years on the throne last year, and the annual report tells about all the related activities, including the church service on 17 January 2016 in the Oslo Cathedral. We can also read that the official website Kongehuset.no had close to 1,6 million visitors during 2016, while the Facebook page received 939 500 likes and 30 500 comments. As many as 29 998 people toured the Royal Palace during the summer season, while 5 232 visited Oscarshall (up from 2 718 the year before).

As usual many orders and medals were awarded during 2016. The section for the recipients of the  Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav lists 18 people, compared to 26 the previous year. HRH Crown Princess Mette-Marit was awarded the Grand Cross with chain, while Court Marshal Arne Omholt, the President of Poland, Andrzej Duda and the President of Italy, Sergio Mattarella, received the Grand Cross, and in addition the Chief of His Majesty The King’s Military Staff, Nils Petter Granholt, received the Knight's Cross, First Class, just to mention a few.

104 people received the Royal Norwegian Order of Merit, compared to 105 in 2014 and 65 in 2015. Among the lucky recipients were the Norwegian Ambassador to Belgium, Ingrid Schulerud (wife of the Secretary General of NATO and former Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg) and Astrid Versto, the Norwegian Ambassador to Croatia (and former Communication Director at the Norwegian Royal Court).

The Medal of St. Olav was awarded to two persons, John Foster Ellison and Perry J. Gulbrandsen. The former is the the Norwegian honorary general consul in Wellington, New Zealand. He also received the Order of St. Olav, Knight 1st Class, by the way. The latter is a retired jurist of Illinois, USA and is or was President of the Nordic Law Club. Obviously of Norwegian descent as well. Just to mention it, 5 people received the medal in 2015.

There were 90 recipients of the King's Medal of Merit during 2016, compared to 78 in 2015 and 138 in 2014. Among the recipients in 2016 was Sveiung Danielsen of Sandefjord. He received the medal for «his exceptional efforts of many years to keep and pass on important traditions of culture and craft». He served as a verger in Sandar Church in Sandefjord for many years as well. A well-deserved medal, I would say.

The King's Commemorative Medal was awarded to 41 people, up from 21 people in 2015.

Never an anniversary without a medal, and King Harald V's Jubilee Medal 1991–2016 was founded on 17 January 2016. Recipients were members of the Royal Family, numerous people of authority (past & present), members of the Royal Court, the King's Military Staff, royal guards who served as batmen (orderly),  the Royalty Protection Unit and  the Norwegian Directorate of Public Construction and Property's employees at the Royal Palace. 366 people all in all, if I have got it right.

For the record, the royal/royalty-related recipients were Queen Sonja, Crown Prince Haakon, Crown Princess Mette-Marit, Princess Ingrid Alexandra, Princess Sverre Magnus, Marius Borg Høiby, Princess Märtha Louise, Princess Astrid, Mrs. Ferner, Ari Behn, Maud Angelica Behn, Leah Isadora Behn, Emma Tallulah Behn, Erling S. Lorentzen, Queen Margrethe of Denmark, King Carl Gustaf of Sweden and Queen Silvia of Sweden.

Finally a survey of my own articles on the subject in the past (no article in 2016, obviously):

23 April 2017

Royalty Digest Quarterly no. 1, 2017

Royalty Digest Quarterly no. 1, 2017 arrived in early April, which meant that I had plenty of reading material for my Easter break. Just a few days earlier I had received the latest issue of Eurohistory as well, in addition to the latest edition of Majesty, which I hadn't had the time to read until Easter. If that was not enough, no. 100 of Våpenbrevet, the newsletter of the Norwegian Heraldry Society, also came in time for my Easter break. And I still haven't read Royal Russia (no. 11) in full either. If that was not enough, I also had to do proof-reading on no. 1, 2017 of Genealogen, the newsletter of the Norwegian Genealogical Society.

But back to Royalty Digest Quarterly. The front page reveals that the former royal family of Bulgaria has made it to the family album this time, and the photo shows King (Czar) Ferdinand of the Bulgarians with his children  Princess Eudocia, Prince (later King) Boris, Prince Kiril and Princess Nadejda. Charlotte Zeepvat's traditional Family Album this time includes two dynasties – the House of Battenberg represented by Prince Alexander (1857–1893), who reigned as Prince of Bulgaria from 1879 to 1886 and three years later married morganatlically Johanna Loisinger (1865–1951), and the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, represented by King Ferdinand (1861–1948), who reigned from 1887 to 1918, his son King Boris III (1894–1943), who reigned from 1918 until his death, and his grandson King Simeon, b. 1937, who reigned in name only from 1943 until he was forced into exile in 1946. Simeon celebrates his 80th birthday on 16 June this year, by the way. Besides an introductory article about the two reigning dynasties in Bulgaria the readers are treated with 77 photos and 2 genealogical tables.

In his Editor's Corner, Ted Rosvall makes a point of the fact that «In this issue, and possibly for the first time, RDQ features and article about Monaco and the Princely House of Grimaldi». It was on due time, I would say. Rosvall continues by lining out the Grimaldi's relations with the other royal and princely houses of Europe.

The first article out is written by Charlotte Zeepvat, who opens with a postcard portrait of the Duke of Abruzzi and Miss Caterina Elkins. The article is about Luigi Amadeo, Duke of the Abruzzi (1873–1933), son of Amadeo, Duke of Aosta (1845–1890), who was King of Spain from 1870 to 1873, by his first wife Maria Vittoria del Pozzo, Princess della Cisterna (1846–1876), and the mariage that never took place. I loved the article, as I can't remember having read much, or anything at all, about him before.

I would also like to applaud the article The Prince and his Lady. Prince Edward of Saxe-Weimar and Lady Augusta Gordon-Lennox* by Marlene A. Eilers Koenig. As I have said many times before while commenting on RDQ and Eurohistory, I want more articles about the so-called lesser-known royals and other royal relations.

Nichael L. Nash has the honor of writing the first article about the Grimaldis. The article is titled At the Court of Prince Albert of Monaco, and is also both interesting and well-written. How to follow up on this? There are so many previous princes of Monaco to write about! Who were all the Honorés and Florestans? And what happened to Princess Delphine, born 1788, who at present isn't even presented with a death year in An Online Gotha?

John Wimbles' collection of letters from the Romanian National Archives and other sources is impressive, and in the present issue we get part III of the presentation compiled by David Horbury.

The last one out is Coryne Hall with her article Little-known royals. Prince Harald of Denmark. How little-known he really was is of course up for discussion. Nice article, but – and this should be taken in a positive way – it could have been longer.

The issue ends as usual with the traditional The World Wide Web of Royalty, this time bringing news of the Imperial, Royal and /or Princely houses of Portugal, Russia, Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg, Schaumburg-Lippe and Waldburg zu Wolfegg u. Waldsee.

Information on Royalty Digest Quarterly can be found at its editor's website Royalbooks.se. See earlier presentation of RDQ here. See also its Facebook page.

*The subject title says in fact Gorndon-Lennox, but that is a typo we all could make or overlook, so I corrected the reference above.