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King Harald’s New Year’s Eve speech

New Year’s Eve is the evening many people associate with a good dinner and fireworks. For the last 73 years, His Majesty the King’s Speech has also been a tradition for the Norwegian people, first on radio, now on TV. The speech is always started with the Norwegian royal anthem, and a grand view of the Royal Palace before King Harald has the entire population’s attention.

“To those who think that no one cares about what you do, I would say: Just your smile can make a difference to a person you meet on the street. Just your kind word can create a better day for another. Just your thoughtfulness can trigger a new good action.” This was how King Harald started his speech to the Norwegian people today.

It was a continuous message of preserving culture and being friendly to each other in this year’s speech. His Majesty said:

“We also contribute to strengthening our society by engaging in what matters to us – so local communities and valuable cultural heritage are not lost. And it is about all those who contribute to conveying our cultural treasure. We must know it, cherish and bring it forward. Through knowledge of both our own and others’ culture and religion, we can more easily recognise what we humans have in common – across inequality.”

King Harald also had a common desire for all Norwegians in the year to come. The King said of his wish:

“On this evening I could wish for a joint New Year’s resolution for all of us: That in the coming year, we will meet each other with kindness. If we together wish us a society characterised by respect in spite of disagreement, of openness rather than fear, of kindness rather than distance.  In this way, we also preserve our heart and makes us who we are.”

It has been an eventful year for the Norwegian royals. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Norway in January/February, and the King and Queen have celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary, to mention some.

His Majesty’s New Year’s Eve speech can be viewed here.

2019 will be an eventful year, as well.

About author

Senior Europe Correspondent Oskar Aanmoen has a master in military and political history of the Nordic countries. He has written five books on historical subjects and more than 700 articles for Royal Central. He has also interview both Serbian and Norwegian royals. Aanmoen is based in Oslo, Norway.