Denmark (Danish: Danmark), officially the Kingdom of Denmark (Danish: Kongeriget Danmark) is a country in northern Europe and the smallest country in Scandinavia. It is part of the European Union. The capital is Copenhagen.
Denmark faces the Baltic and North Seas, and consists of the Jylland Peninsula and the islands of Fyn, Zealand, Bornholm and many other smaller islands, often referred to as the Danish Archipelago. Denmark is located north of Germany, southwest of Sweden and south of Norway. Greenland and the Faroe Islands are also territories of the Kingdom of Denmark, each with sovereign authority.
The origin of Denmark is lost in prehistory. Before it was inhabited by the Nordic peoples, Denmark was home to the Celts - as evidenced by the discovery of ritual swamp killings and burials. The oldest Danish alphabet dates from the seventh century, when the new runic alphabet was created. The oldest city is Ribe which dates from 810.
Until the 11th century (when baptism took place), the Danes were known as the Vikings, along with the Norwegians and Swedes, who colonized, attacked and traded in all parts of Europe. Many archaeologists and historians believe that the Vikings even reached America and were the first to find it. They traveled from Scandinavia to Iceland, then on to Greenland and finally to America.
At different times, the King of Denmark ruled parts of England and Ireland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, France, especially Normandy and parts of the Virgin Islands, Trankebar in India, parts of the Baltic coast and today's northern Germany. Scania, Bleking and Holland were parts of Denmark for most of its early history, but fell under Swedish rule in 1658. The alliance with Norway was broken in 1814, when Norway entered into a new alliance with Sweden, until 1905.
The Danish liberal and national movement became significant in the 1830s, and after the European revolutions of 1848, Denmark became a constitutional monarchy on June 5, 1849.
After the Second Schleswig War in 1864, Denmark was forced to cede the province of Schleswig-Holstein to Prussia, which was a consequence of the defeat that left deep traces in the Danish national identity. After this, Denmark adopted a policy of neutrality, which is why it remains undecided in the First World War