Emergence of the Danish state; the Viking age 7th and 8th c. The coming of the Danes. The Scandinavian Danes occupy southern Sweden, the islands and Jutland, driving back the West Germanic Heruli, Angles, Saxons and Jutes. 9th-11 th c Formation ofthestate; Christianisation; Viking expeditions. 804-810 King Godfred builds the Danevirke in southern Jutland as a frontier fortification directed against Charlemagne. The Christianisation of Denmark begins in the 9th c. but is not completed until the time of Knut (Canute) the Great. Gorm the Old (c. 900-935) and Harald Bluetooth (935-985) unify Denmark after fierce fighting with local chieftains. The Western Vikings (Danes and Norwegians) or NORSEMEN ravage northwestern, western and southern Europe in their small but seaworthy ships, in raids directed at booty and conquest. The settlement of ICELAND begins in 874, of GREENLAND in 983; North America may have been reached around 1000 and later the Canadian arctic islands. In 911 the Viking chief Rollo is made Duke of Normandy (Robert I) by King Charles III of France. 100042 Danish empire. Sven (Swein) Forkbeard (985-1014) and Knut (Canute) the Great (1018-35) conquer Norway and England; but this empire falls to pieces after 1042. The age of the Valdemars The age of the Valdemars (1157-1375) brings Denmark internal consolidation, external power, material prosperity and a period of intellectual and artistic flowering, with the development of an urban culture. c. 10001250 Romanesque architecture. Monumental stone churches built in the first half of the 12th c. are the cathedrals of Ribe and Viborg. Thereafter brick begins to be used as a building material. To the second half of the century belong the monastic churches of Soro (Cistercian) and Ring-sted (Benedictine) and the five-towered Church of Our Lady in Kalundborg. 1157-82 Valdemar the Great. Valdemar re-establishes the unity of Denmark. In 1168 he conquers the island of Rugen, occupied by the Wends. Bishop Absalon (1128-1201), a great statesman and military commander, founds Copenhagen. 120241 Valdemar II.
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