Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Rosenborg Castle - The Silver Lions and the Throne.

 Riddersalen, Rosenborg slot

The three silver lions were made in Copenhagen 1665-70 by Ferdinand Küblich. They had - like the monarch's throne - their model in the old Testament's story about the wise king Solomon which throne was protected by 12 golden lions.The silver lions were used in offical events like fx anointments and they are still used today in the royal family at the "Castrum Doloris".  At the monarch's death the coffin is publicly accessible for a few days, and during this period the lions guard the king or the queen. 

The silver lions stand in the Great Hall (Riddersalen)  at Rosenborg castle. In the great hall is also a fine collection of silver furniture, mainly from the 1700s.

The silver-clad throne, ( used for audience) made by A.F. Holling in Copenhagen for Christian 6.'s Audience Chamber at Christiansborg castle.  Silver furniture symbolized greatness and power, and they were indispensable requisites in a princely residence of the Baroque. The main part of the exhibited furniture was made at Christianborg, which was the absolute monarchy's new residence. It was finished in 1740, but when the new castle burnt down in 1794, the furniture was saved and found a place at Rosenborg. Several pieces of furniture at Rosenborg origin from Christian 6.'s Audience Chamber.

The anointment throne (to the left)  was used for the Danish kings from 1671-1840. Frederik III ordered in the 1660s a throne - and this throne was made even more legendary when it was told that it was made from the horn of a unicorn. The throne is actually made from narwhal tusk, which the king possessed because of his supremacy of the Faroes and Iceland. The throne is made by Bendix Grodtschilling and was used for the first time at Christian 5.'s anointment in 1671. The crowning of Christian 8. in 1840 was however the last use of the throne, since it was also the last coronation upon Danish ground. In 1848 Frederik 7.. became king and signed the first Danish constitution in the start of his rule, in 1849. Since regents are not crowned in Denmark anymore, the next regent is proclaimed at the same time as the prime minister proclaims the old regent's death from the balcony at Christiansborg castle.  
photo september 2008: grethe bachmann

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