How did Harold Bluetooth unify scandinavia?

I’ve heard it said that Harold Bluetooth (for whom the technology is named) “unified” all if Scandinavia.

However, I’ve not been able to find out just HOW he managed that. My cynical side says “unified” is really just a euphemism for conquered. And yes, I know that most large-scale unifications will encounter some resistance. However, there’s a big difference (in my mind) between wiping out a pocket of resistance and slaughtering your way across most of a country or countries.

He didn’t unify Scandanavia. He was king of Denmark, and briefly Norway, though. It was mostly conquering.

You could start by simply reading about him at Wikipedia. :smack:

Harald Bluetooth

He pressed the “Search” button on Norway, and then clicked on “Accept pairing request” on Denmark?

It was easier for him because he had both hands free.

And not much of Norway really, at least directly - there may not have even been much conquering there. The Oslofjord area may have been under loose and shifting Danish suzerainty for decades before his reign and most of the rest of Norway was probably closer to allied than subject under the rule of the jarls of Hlathir/Lade. Some version of king and junior king.

Scandinavia in this period was essentially unurbanized and barely if at all centralized. Sweden wasn’t at all. Norway was not really there yet either - aside from semi-Danish-controlled Viken, the jarls of Lade had as many as 16 subject jarls whose loyalty was not always reliable. Denmark was just sorta starting to gel under first Gorm the Old and then Harald. It has been suggested that Harald’s son and usurper Sweyn Forkbeard was the first Danish ruler who could leave his home base with most of his forces and not fear an uprising or coup in his absence.

That’s presumably because he could only connect to one at a time.

Actually, the problem was that he didn’t have a card set to turn in, so he had too few forces, and the Swedes outrolled him. :stuck_out_tongue:

He phoned it in.

I think in history, it’s not even a euphemism, it’s just a synonym for “conquered.”

Usually, but not necessarily. There wasn’t really any conquest when West and East Germany united.

Also note per the Wikipedia article (and some of the stuff it links to) HB claimed to also be king of a couple places along the (now) German coast as well as Scania. The southern part of what is now Sweden. Scania was just a regular part of Denmark for centuries. So he was king of a part of Sweden, but not really.

Cnut the Great was the real norse bad ass. Norway, Denmark, England* and perhaps more than just Scania on the Swedish side of things. And it all fell apart surprisingly fast after his death.

  • “England” then including a bit of Scotland but not all of Cornwall or some other fiddly parts.

Funniest comment I’ve seen in quite a while !:smiley:

As always, it depends on whose story you listen to. The story of German unification is told as a pseudocoup by West German infiltrators over the power structure of East Germany in Russia.