Portal:Denmark

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Welcome to the Denmark Portal!
Velkommen til Danmarksportalen!

Flag Coat of arms
Location of Denmark within Europe

Denmark is the smallest and southernmost of the Nordic countries. Unified in the 10th century, it is also the oldest. Located north of its only land neighbour, Germany, south-west of Sweden, and south of Norway, it is located in northern Europe. From a cultural point of view, Denmark belongs to the family of Scandinavian countries although it is not located on the Scandinavian Peninsula. The national capital is Copenhagen.

Denmark borders both the Baltic and the North Sea. The country consists of a large peninsula, Jutland, which borders Schleswig-Holstein, and many islands, most notably Zealand, Funen, Vendsyssel-Thy, Lolland, and Bornholm, as well as hundreds of minor islands often referred to as the Danish Archipelago. Denmark has historically controlled the approach to the Baltic Sea, and those waters are also known as the Danish straits.

Denmark has been a constitutional monarchy since 1849 and is a parliamentary democracy. It became a member of the European Economic Community (now the European Union) in 1973. The Kingdom of Denmark also encompasses two off-shore territories, Greenland and the Faroe Islands, both of which enjoy wide-ranging home rule. The Danish monarchy is the oldest existing monarchy in Europe, and the national flag is the oldest state flag in continuous use.

Selected biography

Ole Rømer.

Ole Rømer (September 25, 1644 – September 19, 1710) was a Danish astronomer who made the first quantitative measurements of the speed of light (1676).

Rømer was employed by the French government: King Louis XIV made him teacher for the Dauphin, and he also took part in the construction of the magnificent fountains at Versailles.

In 1681, he returned to Denmark and was appointed professor of Astronomy at Copenhagen University. He was active also as an observer, both at the University Observatory at the Rundetårn and in his home, using improved instruments of his own construction. Unfortunately, his observations have not survived: they were lost in the great fire of Copenhagen in 1728. However, a former assistant (and later an astronomer in his own right), Peder Horrebow, loyally described and wrote about Rømer's observations.


Recently selected: Hans Christian Ørsted - Bjørn Lomborg - Tycho Brahe


Selected picture

Coat of arms of King Christian III of Denmark. Illustration from the first Danish-language Bible (1550).
The first Danish language Bible was published in 1550. One page shows the coat of arms of Denmark's first Protestant monarch; King Christian III.

Image credit: Jakob Binck. 1550

Selected article

Lego bricks
Lego (trademarked LEGO) is a line of construction toys manufactured by the Lego Group, a privately held company based in Billund, Denmark. The company's flagship product, Lego, consists of colorful interlocking plastic bricks and an accompanying array of gears, minifigures and various other parts. Lego bricks can be assembled and connected in many ways, to construct such objects as vehicles, buildings, and even working robots. Anything constructed can then be taken apart again, and the pieces used to make other objects. The bricks, originally manufactured from cellulose acetate, were a development of traditional stackable wooden blocks that locked together by means of several round studs on top and a hollow rectangular bottom. The blocks snapped together, but not so tightly that they required extraordinary effort to be separated.

The toys were originally designed in the late 1940s in Denmark and have achieved an international appeal, with an extensive subculture that supports Lego movies, games, video games, competitions, and four Lego themed amusement parks.

Selected place

Rønne - Sct. Nicolai Church
Rønne is the largest town on the island of Bornholm in the Baltic Sea. It has a population of 13,924 (1 January 2010). Once a municipality in its own right, it is now the administrative centre of the Bornholm municipality.

Owing to its natural harbour and its strategic position in the Baltic Sea, Rønne has an interesting history coming under German and Swedish influence during its development as a herring fishing port. Today, with its quaint cobbled streets, half-timbered houses and interesting museums, it attracts visitors mainly from Denmark, Germany, Sweden and Poland.

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