SUPPORT OUR JOURNALISM: Please consider donating to keep our website running and free for all - thank you!


The fascinating history of a throne that has just passed from a king to a queen

One of Europe’s most popular royals has just received a brand new throne but this isn’t its first time as a regal seat.

In fact, this ”new throne” has a rather interesting history that’s seen it used by a king before it became the most sophisticated prop at a series of theatres.

The three Norwegian thrones for the king, queen and crown prince in the Norwegian parliament are only used once a year, when the royals sit on them during the ceremonial state opening of parliament.

This year, a “new” throne chair will be in place in the hall. It will be used by Queen Sonja when she attends the ceremonial opening or on other formal occasions in the future.

Until now, Queen Sonja has sat on the Queen’s throne, a throne originally made for the use of Queen Maud from 1906. Queen Maud was the first queen to sit on the podium in the parliament, next to the king. Her throne was a converted princess’s chair. For the opening of the Parliament in 1906, it became a queen’s chair. All the chairs received the Norwegian coat of arms, and one of the princess chairs received a closed queen’s crown on the top.

The new chair is in Empire style, newly restored and from the early 19th century. On 10 November 1814, it was used in the parliament hall, which was then located in the Christiania cathedral school, when King Carl Johan gave his first speech from the throne.

The new queen’s chair has, among other things, armrests and lion feet with a more towering feel than the previous one. It was the king’s throne until 1866. Then the parliament building was completed, and a new throne, which the king still uses at the ceremonial opening, was acquired.

The throne ended up at the Christiania Theatre and later the National Theatre, where it was used as a prop. In 1912, however, it was transferred to the Museum of Folk art. In the spring of 2023, the Parliament and the museum entered into a partnership to once again use the chair in connection with royal visits.

"; n.innerHTML = "window._taboola = window._taboola || [];_taboola.push({mode:'thumbnails-a', container:'taboola-below-article-thumbnails', placement:'Below Article Thumbnails', target_type: 'mix'});"; insertAfter(t, e); insertAfter(n, t) }injectWidgetByMarker('tbmarker');

About author

Senior Europe Correspondent Oskar Aanmoen has a master in military and political history of the Nordic countries. He has written six books on historical subjects and more than 1.500 articles for Royal Central. He has also interview both Serbian and Norwegian royals. Aanmoen is based in Oslo, Norway.