After the Danish King decided in 1629 that priests in the Danish-Norwegian church had to pass a university examination in theology, students flocked from Norway to the university in Copenhagen. The expense of studying in Denmark was a heavy burden for many families. Yet the demand for a university in Norway was ignored.
In 1736 a degree in law from the university in Copenhagen was also made compulsory for all applicants for judicial office in Norway. In 1811, thanks to a successful campaign on the part of Count Herman Wedel-Jarlsberg, Norway was finally promised its own university.
King Fredrik VI withdrew his opposition. In 1813 Det Kongelige Fredriks Universitet opened its doors in Christiania, at that time a small provincial town in a country without a capital. Only a year later, Norway declared its independence and passed its own Constitution, but by the end of 1814, Norway had already lost some of that independence. The country was forced into a union with Sweden, but retained its own Constitution, Government and University.
The University played a key role in helping to secure political and cultural independence for Norway within the Union. It became the centre for national development. In addition to surveying and developing Norwegian culture, language and history, the University was involved in developing the infrastructure required by a modern society. The education, health and welfare, and administration authorities also found their expertise there. In 1939, the University changed its name to Universitetet i Oslo and was the only university in Norway until 1946.
Title: University of Oslo bicentenary
Date of Issue: 2 September 2011
Denominations: Kr 9.00