Online Encyclopedia

BORNHOLM

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V04, Page 264 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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BORNHOLM, an island in the Baltic Sea, 22 M. S.E. of the Swedish coast, belonging to Denmark, lying on 15° E., and between 55° and 55° 18' N., and measuring 24 M. from S.E. to N.W. and 19 (extreme) from E. to W. Pop. (1901) 40,889. The surface is generally hilly; the scenery is fine in the north, where the cliffs reach a height of 135 ft., and the granite hill of Helligdomsklipper dominates the island. Besides freestone, exported for building, limestone, blue marble, and porcelain-clay are worked. A little coal is found and used locally, but it is not of good quality. Oats, flax and hemp are cultivated. The inhabitants are employed in agriculture, fishing, brewing, distillation and the manufacture of earthenware. Weaving and clock-making are also carried on to some extent. The capital is Ronne (115 m. by sea from Copenhagen), and there are five other small towns on the island—Svanike, Nekso, Hasle, Allinge, and Sandvig. A railway connects Ronne with Nekso (22 m. E. by S.), where a bust commemorates J. N. Madvig, the philologist, who was born there in 1804 (d. 1886). Blanch's Hotel, to m. N. of Ronne, is the most favoured resort on the island, which attracts many visitors. On the north-west coast are the ruins of the castle of Hammershus, which was built in 1158, and long served as a state prison; while another old castle, erected by Christian V. in 1684, and important as commanding the entrance to the Baltic, is situated on Christianso, one of a small group of islands 15 M. E. by N. The island of Bornholm has had an eventful history. In early times it was long the independent seat of marauding Vikings. In the 12th century it became a fief of the archbishop of Lund. In 1510 it was captured by the Hanseatic League, in 1522 it came under Danish sway, and in 1526 it was made directly subject to the city of Lubeck. In 1645 the Swedes took it by storm, and their possession of it was confirmed by the peace of Roskilde in 1658; but the sympathies of the people were with Denmark, and a popular insurrection succeeded in expelling the Swedish forces, the island coming finally into the possession of Denmark in 166o.
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