Données sociologiques et juridiques sur la religion en Europe et au-delà

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Accueil > Norvège > Repères historiques > Parcours historique > De la Réforme à l’absolutisme

De la Réforme à l’absolutisme

The Reformation was introduced to Denmark-Norway by law, through the adoption of the Church Ordinance in 1537, prescribing the structure and competence of the Norwegian church. After this followed more than a century of increasingly strict legislative acts securing the religious orthodoxy in the realm, including the 1569 Articles on Foreigners (Fremmedartiklene), prohibiting any form of religious dissent for foreigners, and the repeated tightening of punishments for religious transgressions introduced during the reign of Christian IV (1588-1648). His successor, Frederik III abolished the Council of State in 1661, effectively turning Denmark-Norway into an absolutist monarchy, most clearly defined in his King’s Act (Kongelov) from 1665, under which the only checks on absolute monarchical power was to maintain Lutheran orthodoxy, keep the realm undivided and not cede power.

Under the reign of Frederik’s eldest son, King Christian V, a new Norwegian Law was introduced in 1687, sections of which are still on the lawbooks. This law represented the final departure from the Medieval codes in effect up to that time, and secured the continued iron grip of the king over the church and the polity in general. Throughout the 18th century, the Danish-Norwegian state remained strongly absolutist and intolerant of non-Lutheran faiths, as enshrined in the 1741 Code on congregationalism, prohibiting lay preaching of pastors unaffiliated with the official church.

20 septembre 2016