History of Trondheim, Norway as of 1906
Trondhjem, (in early times Nidaros, i. e. the mouth of the River Nid), is the cradle of the Norwegian monarchy, the ancient royal city founded in the year 997 by King Olaf Tryggvessan, who built here a Royal Castle (of wood, but in those days considered magnificent) and a church. The castle and the houses surrounding it were soon reduced to ashes by Svein Jan (the Earl Sveyn), but were afterwards rebuilt by King Olaf the Saint.
The latter king introduced Christianity, encountering the resistance of the heathen chiefs who were a continual thorn in his side. In the battle of Stiklestad in the year 1030 King Olaf the Saint died a martyr’s death and his body was buried in Nidaros, but afterwards enclosed in a silver shrine and placed on the altar of Olaf Kyrre’s Christ Church (the Cathedral).
The inhabitants of Norway, Sweden and Denmark in great crowds made pilgrimages to Trondhjern to honor the relics of the saint, and the town soon became the richest in Norway. Besides the Cathedral there arose 9 parish churches as well as several other churches and monasteries. In 1151 an archiepiscopal see was established, and several Norwegian kings have been crowned in the Cathedral. At Øren (i. e. the delta) the celebrated Øre Thing was held.
In the course of later centuries Trondhjem suffered much from civil war, pestilence, siege and particularly from fire. A series of fires laid the town entirely or partly in ashes. When the reformation came, the pilgrimages ceased. St. Olaf’s shrine and the treasures of the cathedral were carried off and the saint’s body buried in a nameless grave. The monasteries disappeared, as did also the churches, with the exception of two. The town had long before ceased to be the residence of the Norwegian kings.
Trondhjem, as well as the rest of Norway fell under the sway of the Danes. In the Peace of Roskilde the town was ceded to the Swedes and taken possession of by them in the year 1658. But the Norwegians, after a siege, won back their ancient city, and have kept it ever since.
Trondhjem’s great significance for Norway had not passed out of the people’s memory. Although Christiania had become Norway’s capital and the place of residence of its kings, yet the Act of Constitution of the 17th of May 1814 ordained that all future kings of Norway should be crowned in Trondhjem.
Contents to 1906 Brochure of Trondheim, Norway