Norway – The Royal Palace

Surroundings —the grassy, tree-shaded grounds, with residence and business districts of the city reaching off behind us. The building where we saw the old ship is now off at our right (north). Nearer us, at the right, just opposite those broad steps, Karl Johan Street begins, leading down toward the harbor in our rear. You remember how we looked up that street from Position 5, seeing the palace at the end of the vista.

That statue on the terrace represents King Karl Johan himself, in whose time the palace was built. Nov. 25, 1905, H. M. King Haakon VII was escorted through the town to take possession of this royal home. It was from that balcony in the portico that he ad-dressed the people gathered here to welcome him and Queen Maud.

These children find the park an attractive play-ground and enjoy it freely. They are all enrolled in good public schools, open to everybody in town, and their lessons cover about the same range as those in a good American public school of the same grade.* Needy children have books furnished without charge, but most parents prefer to furnish such supplies. Their favorite story-books include many that American and English children know by heart—Hans Christian Andersen’s charming tales were written in Danish, which they understand ; Grimm’s immortal fairy tales have been translated for them from the German; they have besides a great many stories of their own, written by Norwegians. Probably every one of these little folks here now has heard Asbjornsen’s funny account of The Goat That Wouldn’t Go Home to Supper; maybe they have all shivered with terror in their beds at night, remembering Lie’s tale about the bad boy who threw things at a Goblin and how afterwards a Big Hand reached in at the door and clutched him to carry him off ! Norwegian stories are full of action.

It is not difficult to obtain admission to the palace. Let us get an idea of the impressive interior.