Welcome to norskevaapen (Norwegian weapons)
I found there to be little information on Norwegian military arms on the Internet and decided to publish some information on the arms from the small country whose armed forces most probably had the worlds most advanced small-arms in the second half of the 1800′s. I have collected Norwegian military long-guns since the 1960′s and now have most of the main models in my collection. Unless else stated, all items on these pages are from this collection. Please feel free to copy whatever you like of text and pictures, but I would like you to acknowledge the source. I see that the different Wikipedia’s are not very good at remembering this.
You get a larger version of most pictures by clicking on them.
These are some of the weapons that the Norwegian farmer had to have in the early 1600′s – according to the law and by order of the Danish king.
A short and somewhat subjective history lesson about Norway: Norway was in a union “by marriage” with Denmark from the late 1300′s until 1814, when Denmark was on the loosing side of the Napoleonic war (the 400 year night with Norway in the back seat and Denmark doing the drunk driving). Norway was then given to Sweden as penance (Denmark still kept Iceland, Greenland and the Færøe Islands that really were Norwegian). This was the third time Denmark lost chunks of Norway to Sweden due to losing wars, only this time they lost the whole country!
Norway now entered a union of “two sovereign nations” with Sweden, having their king in common. This was not popular in Norway and became increasingly less popular throughout the century. Norway was a small, poor country at the time, but started building fortresses along the Swedish border and an arms-race in small-arms. The production was so large and the models changes so frequently that the whole army could change just about all their rifles to a new model every 7-10 years in the period from 1845-1900.
The Norwegian merchant fleet was already at that time way larger than the Swedish, but the Swedes denied Norway the right of having consulates abroad. The Swedes wanted a monopoly on foreign politics for the two nations and this really was the beginning of the end of the Swedish/Norwegian union.
Norway and Sweden have crashed together a number of times throughout the history, and I believe Norway never really has lost any of these battles – well perhaps a little one in 1808, but…. Anyhow, Sweden accepted cutting Norway loose in 1905 after an election showing 300 000 against and less than 200 for the union in Norway, the condition being that Norway tore down the border fortresses.
Norway then elected a Danish prince as king of Norway and completely stopped its arms race. It was the same old small-arms that met the Germans in 1940 that frightened the Swedes at the turn of the century.
Do you have questions regarding possible Norwegian small-arms or edged weapons, please mail me at: