Johann Friedrich Von Struensee

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Struensee, Johann Friedrich Von


Born Aug. 5, 1737, in Halle; died Apr. 28, 1772, in Copenhagen. Danish statesman. Count (1771).

Struensee was of German descent. In 1768 he was appointed physician to the mentally ill king Christian VII and became in effect his counsellor. After J. H. von Bernstorff resigned in September 1770, Struensee became the single most powerful state figure, rising to the post of privy cabinet minister in 1771. He enacted several reforms in the spirit of enlightened absolutism, such as equality before the law, religious tolerance, freedom of the press, and the abolition of torture and corporal punishment. Struensee was arrested during a palace revolution on the night of Jan. 16, 1772; later he was executed and his reforms were abolished.

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