Portræt af Erik Klipping

Erik V Klipping

Photo: Ukendt


Erik Klipping's constitution is considered Denmark's first constitution, and it was signed at Nyborg Castle in 1282.

Erik V Klipping (1249-1286)

Erik V. was selected as king of Denmark in the year 1254, which meant that he was only five years old when he was appointed as the future king of the kingdom. When his father, Christoffer I died in 1259, the now only 10-year-old Erik took over the kingship. However, it was his mother, Margrete Sambiria, who ruled as guardian on behalf of her son until approx. 1266. In these years she fought for Erik and the throne, as there were disputes, both in the family and among the country's great men, concerning the duties and rights of the royal power. The result of these disputes was that Erik Klipping had to sign a charter in Nyborg on 29 July 1282. The charter, which had to do with limiting the king's power, was sealed in the Danehof ballroom at Nyborg Castle. The law was the first constitutional document in Denmark and is often referred to as Denmark's first constitution. The constitution stated, among other things, that the Danehof (the country's highest court) was to be assembled for an annual meeting in order to control the king's use of power and his government of the country.