List of possessions of Norway

This is a list of territorial possessions of Norway.

Location of Norway and its overseas territories in the World

Current possessions

Norwegian kingdom and some of its current possessions

Integral overseas areas of Norway, although unincorporated:

Svalbard with Bear Island are subject to the provisions of the Svalbard Treaty. Svalbard and Jan Mayen are grouped together for some categorization purposes.

Current dependencies of Norway are all in the southern polar region:

Former dependencies and homelands

Norwegian kingdom at its greatest extent about 1265
Norwegian Empire with its homeland, dependencies and possessions
Norwegian kingdom and its former homeland before 1645

The so-called Greater Norway includes these entities:

Dependencies ceded to Scotland (1st phase)


Briefly-ruled Welsh homeland

National homelands ceded to Sweden (2nd phase)

Early entity

Briefly-ruled Danish homelands

Briefly-ruled Swedish homelands

Dependencies ceded to Denmark (3rd phase)

Ceding era explained

The actual time for the ceding of the islands is somewhat disputed. Denmark claims it took place with the Union of Denmark and Norway in 1536, as the possessions of the Norwegian crown were claimed by the Danish king. Nevertheless, they were still referred to as "dependencies of Norway" in later official documents. Also the Treaty of Kiel states: "...and provinces, constituting the kingdom of Norway, [..], together with their dependencies (Greenland, the Faroe Isles, and Iceland, excepted); [...] shall belong in full and sovereign property to the King of Sweden,...", clearly indicating that they were until 1814 regarded as a part of Norway.

Briefly-ruled Danish kingdom

Former Norse kingdoms outside Scandinavia

Kingdom entities

Norwegian legacy kingdoms subsequently integrated into Norway and Ireland:

Joint kingdom entities with the Danes

Dano-Norwegian legacy kingdoms subsequently integrated into England and France:

Former contested possessions and claims



The spread of Norwegian whaling industry to Antarctica in the early 20th century motivated Norway, right after its independence from Sweden in 1905, to pursue territorial expansion not only in the Arctic claiming Jan Mayen and Sverdrup Islands, but also in Antarctica. Norway claimed Bouvet Island and looked further south, formally inquiring with Foreign Office about the international status of the area between 45° and 65° south latitude and 35° and 80° west longitude. Following a second such diplomatic démarche by the Norwegian Government dated 4 March 1907, Britain replied that the areas were British based on discoveries made in the first half of the 19th century, and issued the 1908 Letters Patent incorporating the British Falkland Islands Dependencies with a permanent local administration in Grytviken established in 1909.[1][2]

Arctic and Northern America

Finland and Russia

See also


  1. Odd Gunnar Skagestad. Norsk Polar Politikk: Hovedtrekk og Utvikslingslinier, 1905–1974. Oslo: Dreyers Forlag, 1975
  2. Thorleif Tobias Thorleifsson. Bi-polar international diplomacy: The Sverdrup Islands question, 1902–1930. Master of Arts Thesis, Simon Fraser University, 2004.
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