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When King Olav died January 17 1991, the palace square was soon filled with flowers, children's drawings and thousands of candles. All the drawings and greetings that were left there in the snow are now kept in the National Archives.

The king himself is the main motive on many of the drawings, and the children have also written personal greetings. Archival reference: Riksarkivet, Det Kongelige Slott, Barnetegninger og kondolanser, Gc, eske 2

The king himself is the main motive on many of the drawings, and the children have also written personal greetings. (Riksarkivet, Det Kongelige Slott, Barnetegninger og kondolanser, Gc, eske 2)



The king's death triggered a manifestation of grief, both collective and individual, that Norway never had seen before. In the snow outside the royal palace the first candles were lit, and in a matter of hours they grew to an ocean of candles. Flowers were put into the snow, and were followed by hand-written greetings and thousands of children's drawings. The rush of adults and children who lit candles and laid down their greetings continued for two weeks until the funeral.

Then there was time to clean up. The staff at the royal palace collected the drawings and greetings that were left in the snow, and after a short time they were handed over to the National Archive. Here they are now a part of the archive of the Royal Palace.

The archives that have been handed over from the palace, document the royals' work as heads of state, as they are expressed through the king's administrative body. Archives that are related to the royal family's privat sphere however, are not kept in the National Archives.





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