Bernstorff, Johann Hartvig Ernst Von

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Bernstorff, Johann Hartvig Ernst Von

 

Born May 13, 1712, in Hannover; died Feb. 18, 1772, in Hamburg. Danish statesman and diplomat.

From 1751 to 1770, Bernstorff was Denmark’s minister of foreign affairs. He considered his basic task to be the liberation of Denmark from the Prussian threat and the strengthening of friendly relations with Russia. In 1767 he signed a treaty with Russia in which Russia ceded to Denmark the rights to theGottorp succession; the treaty facilitated the reunification of all of Schleswig-Holstein by Denmark. An advocate of reforms in the spirit of enlightened absolutism, he freed the serfs on his own estates from feudal dependence.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.