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National Museum - Nationalmuseet - Prinsens Palais

The National Museum (Nationamuseet) is located in the heart of Copenhagen (København) on the Frederiksholms Kanal. This cultural museum is run by the Danish governmental, and it is housed in the former home of some members of the Danish Royal Family; hence the name ‘Prince’s Palace’ (Prinsens Palais). The mansion was used by the Royal Family before they move to their current location in Amalienborg Castle (Amalienborg Slot) at the end of the 18th century. Denmark’s National Museum is must for anyone visitor to Copenhagen with an interest in history.

The museum takes you on a 14000 year journey through Denmark’s history. From the first nomadic reindeer hunters to arrive in the region during the Stone Age, into the Bronze Age, the Iron Age, the Viking Age, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance and right up into Modern Age Denmark. Each section has plenty of artefacts and information to help give a comprehensive structure to Denmark’s complex history. Not only is there plenty of information about the region that we think of today as Denmark, but there is much information and artefacts from all over regions which use to be under Danish control. For example places such as England, Norway, Sweden, Island and Greenland.

Some of the more famous artefacts on display include:
- The Kingigtorssuaq Runestone (Kingigtorssuaq Runestenen) – A late Viking Age rune stone which was found in 1824. The stone was found on the top of a mountain on a remote island in western Greenland.
- Trundholm Sun Chariot (Solvognen) – A late Nordic Bronze Age statue of a chariot.
- Egtved Girl (Egtvedpigen) – One of the best preserved human remains from the Nordic Bronze Age.
- Gundestrup Cauldron (Gundestrupkarret) – A beautifully decorated 1st century silver cauldron. One of the largest ever found in Iron Age Europe.
- Snoldelev Stone (Snoldelev Runesten) – A beautiful 9th century rune stone.
- Golden Horns of Gallehus (Guldhornene fra Gallehus) – Replicas of 2 beautiful golden horns which have a fascinating story of their own.

The Museum also has artefacts from the Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, Japanese, Chinese, Middle Eastern, Far Eastern, Inuit, and Native American cultures. While these artefacts from other cultures give the museum an extra dimension; the journey through Danish history is more than enough to satisfy the budding historian.

The Museum building has a history of its own. The building was once a mansion which was used by one of Denmark’s most famous historical monarchs, King Frederik V. King Frederik V lived in the mansion while he was still Crown Prince. He is the king who established Amalienborg Castle as the Royal Family’s winter residence, and there is an equestrian statue of him in the middle of the courtyard.

The Museum’s impressive collection can be traced back to the formation of the Royal Art Board which was founded by King Frederik III in 1650. The Royal Art Board’s job was to preserve and maintain the King’s art collection. In 1819 many of the King’s artefacts went on display in the loft of the Trinitatis Church (Trinitatis Kirke) in Copenhagen. This could well be considered the first Danish National Museum. The Trinitatis Curch is the home of Copenhagen’s famous 17th century observatory; The Round Tower (Rundetårn). Shortly after the Danish Constitution was signed in 1849 much of the King's collection was transferred to the state, and it was decided that the artefacts should all be assembled in the Princes Palace.

The Danish National Museum always has some very impressive temporary exhibits. More information can be found at the National Museum Homepage.


Nationalmuseet Homepage

LastUpdate: 2015-04-22 10:20:34