Christian V of Denmark

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Christian V

Christian V (April 15, 1646 - August 25, 1699), was king of Denmark and Norway from 1670-1699.

The son of Frederick III of Denmark and Sophia Amelia of Brunswick-Lneburg, was born at Flensburg.

He married Charlotte Amelia of Hesse-Cassel on May 14, 1667 at Nykbing, and ascended the throne on February 9, 1670.

He was a weak despot with an exaggerated opinion of his dignity and his prerogatives. Almost his first act on ascending the throne was to publicly insult his wife by introducing his sixteen-year-old mistress, Amelia Moth (1654-1719), into court. She was the daughter of his former tutor (Paul Moth), and he made her countess of Sams on December 31, 1677.

He had eight children by his wife and six by his mistress.

His personal courage and extreme affability made him highly popular among the people, but he showed himself quite incapable of taking advantage permanently of the revival of the national energy, and the extraordinary overflow of native middle-class talent, which were the immediate consequences of the revolution of 1660.

Under the guidance of his great chancellor Griffenfeldt, Denmark seemed for a brief period to have a chance of regaining her former position as a great power. But in sacrificing Griffenfeldt to the clamour of his adversaries, Christian did serious injury to the monarchy. He frittered away the resources of the kingdom in the unremunerative Swedish war of 1675-1679, and did nothing for internal progress in the twenty years of peace which followed. He died in a hunting accident.


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