House of Oldenburg
The Norwegian royal families are the families of either previous or present Norwegian monarchs. The current family who holds the throne are members of the House of Glücksburg and ascended the throne after the election of Prince Carl (regal name Haakon VII) during the dissolution of the Swedish-Norwegian union in 1905.
In Norway there is a distinction between the Royal House (kongehuset) and the royal family (kongelige familie). The Royal House includes only the monarch and their spouse, the heir apparent and their spouse, and the heir apparent's eldest child. The royal family includes all of the sovereign's children and their spouses, grandchildren, and siblings. The current royal family, and Royal House, maintains a high approval rating among the Norwegian people.
The Norwegian monarchy traces its history and origin back to the unification and founding of Norway, as well as Norway's first king, Harald I of the Fairhair dynasty. With the introduction of the Norwegian Law of Succession in 1163, the legal framework established that only one monarch and one royal family was, through succession, allowed to rule.
Norway, Sweden and Denmark had joint monarchs during the Kalmar Union in the late Middle Ages, and Norway remained in union with Denmark after Sweden left the union in 1523. Following the reformation a joint Danish-Norwegian state was established 1536-37, which was ruled from Copenhagen by the House of Oldenburg until Norway was ceded to Sweden at the Treaty of Kiel in 1814 following Denmark-Norway's defeat in the Napoleonic Wars. Norway was briefly independent with its own king in 1814, but forced into a new union with Sweden under the rule of the House of Bernadotte.
Upon becoming independent in 1905, Norway decided through a referendum to remain as a monarchy, with its first monarch being the Danish-born King Haakon VII, whose family consisted of the British Princess Maud and their son Olav. It is King Haakon's descendants that today make up the current royal family of Norway.
Through marriages and historical alliances, the Norwegian royal family is closely related to the Swedish and Danish royal families as well as being more distantly related to royal families of Greece and the United Kingdom.
The current king Harald V descends from all of the four kings belonging to the House of Bernadotte (1818-1905) that preceded the House of Glücksburg on the throne and is the first Norwegian monarch to be a descendant of all previous Norwegian monarchs since 1818.
Members of the Royal House are:
- King Harald V (The Monarch)
Queen Sonja (The Consort)
Members of the Royal Family (people who are in the royal bloodline or who have become a member of the family through marriage but are not in the Royal House) are:
- Prince Sverre Magnus of Norway (The King's grandson)
- Marius Borg Høiby (The King's step-grandson)
- Princess Märtha Louise of Norway (The King's daughter)
- Princess Astrid, Mrs. Ferner (The King's sister)
Deceased members of the Royal Family are:
- Queen Maud (The King's grandmother; died in 1938)
- Crown Princess Märtha (The King's mother; died in 1954)
- King Haakon VII (The King's grandfather; died in 1957)
- King Olav V (The King's father; died in 1991)
- Princess Ragnhild, Mrs. Lorentzen (The King's sister; died in 2012)
- Johan Ferner (The King's brother-in-law; died in 2015)
- Ari Behn (The King's former son-in-law, died in 2019)
- Erling Lorentzen (The King's brother-in-law, died in 2021)
Family tree of members
* Member of the Royal House
Royal coat of arms
The coat of arms of Norway is one of the oldest in Europe and serves both as the coat of arms of the nation and of the Royal House. This is in keeping with its origin as the coat of arms of the kings of Norway during the Middle Ages.
The specific rendering of the Norwegian arms has changed through the years, following changing heraldic fashions. In the late Middle Ages, the axe handle gradually grew longer and came to resemble a halberd. The handle was usually curved in order to fit the shape of shield preferred at the time, and also to match the shape of coins. The halberd was officially discarded and the shorter axe reintroduced by royal decree in 1844, when an authorized rendering was instituted for the first time. In 1905 the official design for royal and government arms was again changed, this time reverting to the medieval pattern, with a triangular shield and a more upright lion.
The coat of arms of the royal house as well as the Royal Standard uses the lion design from 1905. The earliest preserved depiction of the Royal Standard is on the seal of Duchess Ingebjørg from 1318. The rendering used as the official coat of arms of Norway is slightly different and was last approved by the king 20 May 1992.
The royal coat of arms is not used frequently. Instead, the king's monogram is extensively used, for instance in military insignia and on coins.
Arms of Norway
Royal Coat of Arms of Norway
Coat of Arms of the Crown Prince of Norway
Royal Monogram of King Haakon VII of Norway
Royal Monogram of Queen Maud of Norway
Royal Monogram of King Olav V of Norway
Royal Monogram of Princess Märtha of Norway
Royal Monogram of King Harald V of Norway
Royal Monogram of Queen Sonja of Norway
Royal Monogram of Crown Prince Haakon of Norway
Royal Monogram of Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway
Royal Monogram of Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway
Royal Monogram of Prince Sverre Magnus of Norway
- Kings of Norway family tree
- Succession to the Norwegian throne
- List of Norwegian monarchs
- Monarchy of Norway
- "History". www.royalcourt.no. Norwegian Royal Court. Archived from the original on 2014-10-25.
- "The Royal Family". www.royalcourt.no. Norwegian Royal Court. Archived from the original on 2014-10-25.
- Central, Guest PostsRoyal (2014-06-26). "How popular are Europe's Monarchies?". Royal Central. Retrieved 2019-04-26.
- "Royal romance raised a ruckus". www.newsinenglish.no. 15 January 2016. Retrieved 2019-04-26.
- "Rikssamling". www.kongehuset.no (in Norwegian). Retrieved 2019-04-17.
- "The Family tree". www.royalcourt.no. Retrieved 2020-05-06.
- A web page featuring the history of the coat of arms of Norway Archived 2015-04-02 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved 21 November 2006
- An article from the Norwegian National Archives depicting the seal of Duchess Ingebjørg Archived 2006-02-14 at the Wayback Machine (in Norwegian) Retrieved 5 November 2007
- Web page on rules for the use of the coat of arms (Norwegian) Archived 2013-11-18 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved 21 November 2006