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(shlĕs`vĭkh), Dan. Slesvig, former duchy, N Germany and S Denmark, occupying the southern part of Jutland. The Eider River separates it from HolsteinHolstein,
former duchy, N central Germany, the part of Schleswig-Holstein S of the Eider River. Kiel and Rendsburg were the chief cities. For a description of Holstein and for its history after 1814, see Schleswig-Holstein.
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. German Schleswig forms part of Schleswig-HolsteinSchleswig-Holstein
, state (1994 pop. 2,595,000), c.6,050 sq mi (15,670 sq km), NW Germany. Kiel (the capital and chief port), Lübeck, Flensburg, and Neumünster are the major cities.
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. Danish Schleswig, known as North Schleswig (Dan. Nordslesvig or Sønderjylland) includes the cities of Åbenrå, Haderslev, Sønderborg, and Tønder, and was incorporated with Denmark following a plebiscite in 1920.

The duchy of Schleswig, created in 1115, was a hereditary fief held from the kings of Denmark. King Waldemar III (who had been duke of Schleswig as Waldemar V) conferred Schleswig on his uncle, Gerhard, and granted a charter forbidding the union of Schleswig and Denmark under a single overlord. In 1386 the count of Holstein received Schleswig as a hereditary fief. His descendant, Christian IChristian I
, 1426–81, king of Denmark (1448–81), Norway (1450–81), and Sweden (1457–64), count of Oldenburg, and founder of the Oldenburg dynasty of Danish kings.
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 of Denmark, inherited (1460) both Schleswig and Holstein, but he was obliged to recognize the inseparability of the two territories and to affirm that they were bound to the Danish crown by a personal union only.

In the 16th cent. Schleswig and Holstein (which had also become a duchy) underwent complex subdivisions, although theoretically the principle of the inseparability of the two duchies was not violated. The three main divisions were: a ducal portion, including parts of both duchies, which was conferred on Adolphus, duke of Holstein-Gottorp, younger brother of Christian III of Denmark, and on his descendants, the dukes of Holstein-Gottorp; a royal portion, including parts of both duchies, ruled directly by the Danish kings; and a common portion, ruled jointly by the Danish kings and the dukes of Holstein-Gottorp.

By the Treaty of Roskilde (1658) the Danish crown renounced its suzerainty over ducal Schleswig; the resulting quarrels between Denmark and the duke of Holstein-Gottorp were a major factor in the Northern WarNorthern War,
1700–1721, general European conflict, fought in N and E Europe at the same time that the War of the Spanish Succession was fought in the west and the south.
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 (1700–1721), which ended with the dispossession of Duke Charles Frederick of Holstein-Gottorp and the union of the ducal portion of Schleswig with the Danish crown. Grand Duke Paul (later Emperor Paul I), renounced (1773) the ducal portion of Holstein, yielding it to the Danish crown, in exchange for OldenburgOldenburg
, former state, NW Germany. It is now included in the state of Lower Saxony. The city of Oldenburg was the capital. The former state consisted of three widely separated divisions.
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. Thus all Schleswig and Holstein were once more united under the Danish kings. The events related in the article Schleswig-HolsteinSchleswig-Holstein
, state (1994 pop. 2,595,000), c.6,050 sq mi (15,670 sq km), NW Germany. Kiel (the capital and chief port), Lübeck, Flensburg, and Neumünster are the major cities.
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 led to the annexation (1866) of both duchies by Prussia.


city (1994 pop. 26,857), Schleswig-Holstein, N Germany, on the Schlei, an inlet of the Baltic Sea. The city's economy is based on the production of food products and leather and on fishing. One of the oldest cities in N Germany, Schleswig was known by c.800. It was a Roman Catholic episcopal see from 947 until the Reformation (16th cent.). The city was the residence of the dukes of Schleswig and (1514–1713) of the dukes of Holstein-Gottorp. It was the capital of Schleswig-Holstein from 1866 to 1917, when it was replaced as capital by Kiel. The fortified Gottorf, or Gottorp, castle (16th–18th cent.) in Schleswig now houses museums of art and early history. The Gothic Cathedral of St. Peter (12th–15th cent.) contains a fine carved reredos by Hans Brüggemann (16th cent.) and the tomb of Frederick I of Denmark.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a historical region on the southern Jutland Peninsula, north of the Eider River. In the Middle Ages, Schleswig became an object of contention between the Frankish (and later German) kings and the rulers of Denmark. Beginning in the early 12th century it was governed by Danish princes holding the title of duke. In 1386, as a Danish Iehn, Schleswig passed to the German nobility of Holstein County.

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


1. a fishing port in N Germany, in Schleswig-Holstein state: on an inlet of the Baltic. Pop.: 24 288 (2003 est.)
2. a former duchy, in the S Jutland Peninsula: annexed by Prussia in 1864; N part returned to Denmark after a plebiscite in 1920; S part forms part of the German state of Schleswig-Holstein
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
Critique: A collective work of outstanding and seminal scholarship, "Schleswig Holstein" is comprised of fifteen eruditely written and exceptionally informative articles by expert and knowledgeable contributors.
German and Danish historians and researchers address the historical context; how history, historical monuments, and historical heritage have been used in the 19th and 20th centuries in Schleswig and the Danish-German borderland in the fight for identity and ownership of the region; dynastic issues in the Middle Ages and 18th and 19th centuries; economic and social interests in the mid-19th century; national issues, conflicts, and nationalism in the Middle Ages and 1848; the fortification of Dannevirke as a national symbol; practical, administrative, and religious aspects, such as the health and mobility of the inhabitants of Schleswig, church administration, and the status of Heligoland; and further implications of the contest for Schleswig-Holstein.
In September 2011, the Commission approved restructuring aid, whereby HSH Nordbank was granted a risk shield of 10 billion by the regions of Hamburg and Schleswig Holstein.
Online sports betting provider Betfair Group plc (LSE:BET) has been granted a licence to operate its betting exchange in the German state of Schleswig Holstein.
Betfair intends to pay 20% of its gross gaming revenue derived from Germany to Schleswig Holstein.