Denmark (Danmark). A Scandinavian state governed by a constitutional monarchy. The territory of Denmark proper covers 42,933 sq km, and its 2021 est population was 5,843,347. The capital is Copenhagen.

The ancestors of the Danes, the Normans, served in the Varangian retinue in Kyiv in the 9th and 10th centuries. In the 11th and 12th centuries the Kyivan Rus’ princes had dynastic ties with the Danish court. The daughter of Yaroslav the Wise, Yelysaveta Yaroslavna, was married to the Danish king Sweyn II in 1067 (her second marriage). The wife of Volodymyr Monomakh, Gytha, spent some time at the Danish court before she married. Grand Prince Mstyslav I Volodymyrovych’s two daughters married Danes: Malfrid was the second wife of King Eric Emune, and Ingeborg married Knud Lavard (1096-1131); Ingeborg’s son, the famous King Valdemar I (1131–82) thus was related to the Volodymyr Monomakh family.

A number of Danes who took an interest in Eastern Europe informed the Danish public about Ukraine. The diplomat J. Just left a detailed account of his visit to Ukraine in 1711. The famous literary critic G. Brandes (1842–1927), who often visited Russia and Austria, was favorably disposed toward Ukrainians and maintained ties with Ivan Franko. The writer A.M. Benedictsen also wrote about Ukrainian affairs, but it was T. Lange, who lived in Ukraine at the beginning of the 20th century and translated the works of Marko Vovchok and Ukrainian folk songs into Danish, that displayed the keenest interest in Ukrainian culture.

At the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century the Ukrainian co-operative movement in Galicia benefited from the experience of Danish co-operatives. In 1919 diplomatic ties were established between Ukraine and Denmark. The Directory of the Ukrainian National Republic sent a delegation headed by Dmytro Levytsky to Copenhagen. A Danish consulate was opened in Kyiv. Ukrainians began to emigrate to Denmark before 1914, largely on an individual basis. After the Second World War about 1,000 Ukrainians with their own Catholic clergy resided temporarily in Denmark; their parish priest, Rev M. Syvenky, is buried in Copenhagen. In the 1980s about 200 Ukrainians were scattered throughout Denmark; P. Balytsky was one of the more prominent community figures. At Copenhagen University Gregor Malantschuk, a noted specialist in the philosophy of Søren Kierkegaard, taught the Ukrainian language.

Translations of the work of some Danish writers, such as J.P. Jacobsen, H. Kirk, and H. Pontoppidan, have been published in Ukraine; some Ukrainian classics have been translated into Danish.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 1 (1984).]

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