1849Fourth Journey to Sweden
The cease-fire is cancelled and war recommences.
Maundy Thursday: The ship of the line 'Christian VIII' is blown up. HCA knows several of the victims by name. When the news spreads on 7th, "deep gloom" descends upon the town (in the almanac, same day). The theatres close on 9th, in mourning. During the next few days, trouble develops between HCA and Mrs Drewsen and Jette Wulff, who feel HCA is not Danish enough in his outlook. He, on the other hand, feels that they are fanatical.
HCA writes "Soldatens Sang til Dannebrog" (The Soldiers Song to The Danish Flag). It is printed in the newspaper 'Fædrelandet' on the same day.
En Nat i Roskilde (A Night in Roskilde) is performed at Casino. 46 performances held there during HCA's life.
Farewell party for HCA at Fredrika Bremer's, held because he is going to Sweden (inspired by Fredrika Bremer's descriptions of her country). HCA feels the need to get away from Denmark ("My mind was ill, I suffered both spiritually and physically, (in Mit Livs Eventyr (The Fairy Tale of My Life)).
Farewell party at Ørsted's, where Fredrika Bremer, Martensen and Hartmann are present.
Ascension Day: departs for Sweden by ship from Copenhagen, via Elsinore to Helsingborg. From here, on to Gothenburg, then on 22nd May with the steam-ship Polhem via the Göta Canal, past Trollhättan, through Vänern and Vättern and the archipelago to Stockholm.
25th May - 5th June
In Stockholm. Is very dissatisfied with the hotel - Stadt Frankfurt - in spite of the Danish manager. In a letter dated 28th May to Jette Wulff he writes:
"The hotel, which is one of the best - goodness, how foul it is, I have the most miserable room, revolting wooden furniture, the covers are old and smell vile, so that the windows now remain open day and night, and there is nothing better to be found. What a pity Stockholm does not have a hotel fit for people; ours in Denmark are not the best, but compared to this they're on a par with those in London".
In Stockholm HCA associates, amongst others, with the poet Baron Bernhard von Beskow (Oehlenschläger's close friend for many years) and with the poets J.G. Carlèn and Emilie Flygare-Carlèn, who were married. On 2nd June, HCA was received in audience by the Swedish King Oscar I, at which time he thanks the king for the North Star decoration and defends Denmark's right to continue the war. On 3rd June a party is held for HCA at the Trädgård Association.
27 May 1849
HCA sends a letter from Stockholm to Bournonville containing a plan for the production of "Valkyrien, Ballet-Opera i to Acter af Bournonville. Musik af Glæser. Text af H.C. Andersen" (The Valkyrie). The project was never carried out, although Bournonville revived the idea later, without including HCA. In 186l, he had a ballet produced titled Valkyrien (The Valkyrie) , with the text by him and music by J.P.E. Hartmann.
Denmark's new democratic constitution is now in effect.
Since his youth, HCA had been moderately liberal, often criticising the contempt for human beings which was characteristic in a society divided by class. Being an "underdog" himself, he had a natural interest in supporting the demand for societal change made by enlightened citizens of the bourgoisie. On the other hand, it was precisely this cultured bourgoisie who distanced themselves most from the upstart that HCA was. At the same time, he was widely accepted on the estates and in the households of royals and the princely, where artists, bohemians and eccentrics were not - as was often the case with the cultivated bourgoisie - considered to be dubious characters with shady morals.
This is part of the reason why HCA's feelings towards the actual societal developments are rather divided. After 1848 he feels increasingly sceptical about "the new rulers" and even more so towards the new political powers; farmers of recent wealth (those of the party called "Venstre", who by and by come to the fore as "subverters of society" and thereby pose a threat to HCA's accrued fortune). He is also dubious about the new bourgeoisie with capital (against whom Goldschmidt also turns critically during the 1860's).
However, at the time of the new constitution and system renewal, HCA is still primarily to be found amongst the liberals, cf. his connections with some of the leading liberal politicians (Lehmann and Monrad). His role during the public demonstrations in the streets of Copenhagen is, however, almost symbolic of the ambivalent position he holds.
Sails from Stockholm to Uppsala. Stays here until 11th June. At an evening party held by Governor Robert Fredrik von Kraemer, he hears the poet and university lecturer Gunnar Wennerberg perform one of his duets, "Gluntarne", with another person.
11th - 17th June
Once again in Stockholm. Dines with "bookseller" Bonnier. Pays a morning visit to the poet C.J.L. Almquist. Also visits and dines with the king and queen.
Departs Stockholm for a 14-day trip to Dalarne and Uppsala (visits Atterbom the poet, in the evening). On the outward journey he overnights in the town Sæter, where he is woken in the night by a fire in the courtyard of the inn. In many of the places he passes through people know of him. For example at the vicarage of Rural Dean Wilhelm of Ekestam in Tuna ("the most charming place on the whole journey, cultivated, pleasant people. I was well known and popular before even meeting them", as he writes to Jette Wulff on 24th June). And from the same letter:
"At one place where I changed horses, the man was so pleased to have the company of "Andersen" that he invited me in for coffee and port. I had only spent one night at Rättvik Vicarage in Siljan when the whole town was talking, at the doctor's, the curate's and the dean's, about my presence. The news spread like wild-fire, through the children. They knew all my fairy-tales and I found The Two Baronesses in several places, as well as A Walking Tour [Fodreisen til Amager]. All in all, Andersen from first to last".
Takes part in a moving Midsummer celebration at Leksand. Whilst here, he cuts a castle in paper for the daughter of the hostess,
"and she was so happy. Shortly thereafter I heard a shout of joy outside and I could not help but peek; the entire household was delighted. Then there was a knock at the door and old grandmother brought me some of her spicy biscuits, but with a request; would I cut, in the evening, some new shapes for her, for making biscuits, because I was able. So now I have sat for a whole hour, cutting out men, women, swans and dancers, and these are the future shapes of spicy biscuits in the town Leksand. I doubt they will be known as Andersen's biscuits, but the hostess will probably tell the story often; that there had been "a skilled stranger". There are many different ways of being immortalised! - Who would have thought that while Europe is being reshaped, I would come to Dalerne and revolutionise the shape of spicy biscuits! -"
(letter dated 24th June to Jette Wulff).