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Union Dissolution Day - June 7th

Continuing from yesterday, June 7th is Union Dissolution Day in Norway.  This is the date when the union between Norway and Sweden that had existed since 1814 was dissolved in 1905.  While not a public holiday June 7th 1905 marks the first time in 586 years that Norway had it's own King.

An interesting historical footnote is that the King and his cabinet had to leave Norway during World War II on this same date in 1940 due to the country being occupied by Germany.  The stayed in London during the war, in exile and returned again on the same date in 1945.


Sweden National Day - June 6th

Flag of Sweden Flag of Sweden

Prior to 1983, the 6th of June was known as flag day in Sweden but since then it has been the National Day of Sweden.  The idea for this date to be chosen as a national day dates back to the 1890's when it was suggested by the founder of the Skansen, Artur Hazelius.  He suggested this date because a new constitution was signed on this day in 1809 and King Gustav Vasa was crowned on this day in 1523.  In 1916 the idea was adopted to commemorate Sweden receiving it's own flag back in 1905 when the union with Norway was dissolved.

As you can see it took quite awhile for the date to become the official National Day and many have suggested that it lacks credibility because of this.  2005 marked thebeginning of it being an official public holiday, taking the place of Whit Monday.

Sweden has managed to stay out of all the wars of the modern era and this, some suggest, is the source of the hesitance in the country making a big deal of the National Day.  Prior to 1983 many people did not even see any symbols of the day being special other than the flag of Sweden adorning buses.  Today, there are still not many celebrations that go on but many businesses are closed allowing people the opportunity to visit family and friends.



Podcast for June 6th - June 12th


Happy Grundlovsdag

Flag of Denmark Flag of Denmark

In Denmark June 5th is Constitution Day in recognition of the signing of the 1849 constitution.  When it was signed the country became a constitutional monarchy.  Unfortunately, I found very little information on the day other than it is not widely celebrated.  The only things I found was that due to most businesses closing people were free to visit friends and family.

The wording on all the sites were identical or close to it, so if anyone has any additional information please let me know.  The one thing I found interesting is the pictures I ran across seemed to only be fromembassies in Asian countries.



Some pictures:

Kodomo no Hi, May 5

400px-koinobori4797In Japan the 5th of May is known as Children's Day or Kodomo no Hi.  Part of Golden Week, it is one of several festivals that celebrated during this time of year.  A national holiday that actually incorporates both Boy's Day (May 5th) and Girl's Day (March 3rd), many people still think of it as just Boy's day.

Many of the traditional symbols of the celebration still revolve around boys, like the displaying of a traditional helmet and samurai dolls representing great warriors of the past.  The most common thing displayed is a carp kite.  The carp is chosen as it is said when one swims against the current it turns into a dragon, symbolising success.  The carp also drives away evil spirts.


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