“A Royal Affair”

*A Part of the Danish Cultural Heritage*
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“A Romantic Royal Affair”
Follow the Footsteps of Royal Danish History
A ROYAL AFFAIR is the true story of an ordinary man who wins the Danish Queen's heart and starts a revolution. Available on DVD in English from Zentropa Film.
Here is an historical painting by Danish artist Kristian Zahrtmann - illustrating a scene from the Court of King Christian VII in 1772. The King is laying down - while Queen Caroline Matilda and Johann Friedrich Struensee are having a romantic tête-à-tête. The original Painting is on display at the The Hirschsprung Collection.
Count and Royal physician Johann Friedrich Struensee was arrested in his bedroom at Christiansborg Palace in the middle of the night after a masked ball in 1772 at the palace's royal theatre.
The Citadel Church from 1704 - where Johann Friedrich Struensee was put into prison in 1772 - and later sentenced to death by King Christian VII for treason and conspiracy against the King.
Struensee and his allied was first beheaded in public - and then their limbs was parted from the bodies and displayed tied on wagons wheels - whiles the heads was placed on top of the supporting high poles - so everyone could see all of the deceased remains dripping with blood. Beheading and other types of barbaric punishment was a normal way of executing in the 18th century.
The original axe that beheaded Struensee in 1772 is exhibited at the Danish National Museum together with other personal items belonging to Queen Caroline Matilda.
Kronborg Castle was a Royal Estate where Queen Caroline Matilda was kept imprisoned in 1772 - and until she was deported to Germany - where she died at Celle Castle in 1775 of scarlet fever.
Struensee is buried in the vault under St. Petri Church from 1648 - together with many prominent persons and aristocrats of noble families from Copenhagen. St. Petri Church has served the large German-speaking congregation in Copenhagen for over 400 years. Sankt Petri Kirke.
King Christian VII in his coronation robes together with the Crown Jewels and Regalia. The King is wearing the Crown of the Absolute Monarchs - created by Paul Kurtz in 1670 for King Christian V - and later used by the following Kings up to Christian VIII.
King Christian VII is laid to rest at the Royal Mausoleum and the Royal Burial Plot at Roskilde Cathedral - where his sarcophagus is placed in his father's prestigious chapel called "King Frederik V's Chapel”.
“A Royal Affair”...
...a very true and romantic love story!

The Danish film called “A Royal Affair” (Danish - En Kongelig Affære) - produced in 2012 - by Danish Film Company ZENTROPA - is a historical and romantic drama that focuses on the Royal romance between the Danish Queen Caroline Matilda (Danish - Caroline Matilde) - and the Royal German Physician Count Johann Friedrich von Struensee from 1769 to 1772. The King returned to Copenhagen in 1769 from his long tour of Europe bringing with him Johann Friedrich Struensee - who later was appointed to be the King’s Royal physician. King Christian VII suffered much of his mental illness with severe emotional and unstable problems - and became even more schizophrenic during his reign as a King.

Struensee and Caroline Matilda arrested in 1772
After the Royal Affair between Queen Caroline Matilda and Johann Friedrich Struensee came to the King’s attention - Johann Friedrich Struensee was arrested in 1772 - for treason and for insulting His Majesty - and therefor sentenced to death - while the King divorced the Queen and sent her to prison at Kronborg Castle to await her further judgement. Struensee and Queen Caroline Matilda was both arrested in the middle of the night between 16 and 17 January 1772 - after a masked ball at the royal theatre at Christiansborg Palace.

The Queen sent in exile
After the Queen’s stay as a prisoner at Kronborg Castle - she was then deported on board a British frigate to Celle - and later resided at Celle Castle near Hannover in Germany. Even though Queen Caroline Matilda was an British Princess she was not allowed to enter Great Britain by her brother King George III - and remained the rest of her life in exile in Germany - where she died suddenly of scarlet fever at Celle Castle on 10 May 1775. She was buried in the Stadtkirche St. Marien in Celle.

Struensee Beheaded
Count Johann Friedrich Struensee was arrested in his bedroom in 1772 - and later condemn to death and barbarically beheaded in public - whit more than 30,000 spectators - while his body was totally dismembered and exposed publicly at “Østerfælled" 28. April 1772. The execution took place where the National Stadium "Parken" is located at the public park "Fælledparken". His parted body was then transported to the public Gallows Hills outside of Copenhagen and later buried her. His bones were dug up around 1885 - and since reburied in the Crypt at the tombs of Saint Petri Church - were the public today has access to see his coffin under the tombs of the church. Saint Petri Church is situated in the old Latin Quarters of Copenhagen - and has for over 400 years played a role as a church for the German-speaking congregation in Copenhagen.

Follow the footsteps of
Struensee and Queen Caroline Matilda…
...visit the many places - where this historical and authentic drama took place - and trace the royalties based on the film “A Royal Affair”.

Christiansborg Palace
The first Christiansborg Palace was the Royal residence from 1745 - 1794 - where both the Queen Carolina Matilda and Count Johann Friedrich Struensee lived - and when the Royal romance between them started from 1769 - 1772. At this palace they had there bedroom chambers at Christiansborg Palace - and where they both were arrested in 1772 - after a masked ball at the palace’s own small Royal Theatre. Interested guests can visit Christiansborg Palace and imagine the atmosphere here - even though the first Christiansborg Palace - where this romantic episode took place - burnt down in 1794 - and was replaced by a second palace - as well as the present third Christiansborg Palace from 1928. The location is still the same on the isle of “Slotholmen” - and the shape and architecture of the palace is nearly quite identical with the Christiansborg Palace that was raised by a fire in 1794.

See: Christiansborg Palace

The Citadel Church
At the old Citadel church from 1704 - Johann Friedrich Struensee was kept as a prisoner before he was sentenced to death in 1772. The prisoners at this military church could follow the "Word of God" through a hole in the wall - and participated in the church services from their prison cells. The military prison is built behind the church - and visitors that are interested to experience where the former Royal physician Johann Friedrich Struensee was held as a prisoner can visit the premises during opening hours - where a small exhibition tells a short story of being a prisoner at the Citadel Church plus a brief story about Struensee and his time here. The Old Citadel and military fortress from 1626 - and built by King Christian IV (1577-1648 - ruled Denmark and Norway 1588-1648).

The Danish National Museeum

At the Danish National Museum - one can experience the Axe that parted Johann Friedrich Struensee - which in on permanent display in this museum. Here you will also find the Royal garters of Queen Caroline Matilda plus many of the love letter to and from her lover Johann Friedrich von Struensee. See:

See: Museums

The Execution Venue
Struensee was executed 34 years old together with his friend and accomplices Enevold Brandt for treason and conspiracy against the King. The execution was performed at "Øster Fælled" on 28. April - 1772 in public with about 30,000 Copenhageners witnessing the axe beheading both Struensee and Brant - and thereafter experienced how their bodies were parted - and then displayed on wheels that was hanging on high supporting poles - where their heads were placed high on the top. The execution venue "Øster Fælled" was at that time located far from the ramparts of Copenhagen - and today the area is turned into the biggest recreational area and park in Copenhagen called "Fælledparken" - where the national football stadium also is situated. The “Fælledparken” public park can be visited - and is just a few kilometres from Copenhagen city centre. Their body parts were then transported to “Vester-fælled” - a Gallows Hill - where the parts laid for years to rotten as a warning to other citizen’s.

Kronborg Castle
At Kronborg Castle in North Sealand - Queen Carolina Matilda was held imprisoned and remained under her house arrest until she was legitimately divorced from King Christian VII - and later sentenced to be deported to Germany - where she resided at Celle Castle until her death in 1775. Interested visitor can visit this historical place and soak up the atmosphere at Kronborg by also visiting the Royal chambers and casemates at Kronborg Castle.

See: Kronborg Castle

St. Petri Church
At St. Petri Church in Copenhagen from 1648 - and located in the old Latin Quarters Johann Friedrich Struensee was reburied - when his remains was found and dug up in 1885. His little coffin with his bones is placed in the vaults under the church. Interested visitors can visit this historical site and see the coffin of Johann Friedrich Struensee plus other
prominent persons and aristocrats of noble families from Copenhagen.

See: St. Petri Church

Roskilde Cathedral
Roskilde Cathedral is the Royal Mausoleum and the Royal Burial Plot for Danish Kings and Queens since the protestant reformation in 1536. The various ornate Royale sarcophaguses - one more remarkable and prestigious than the other - are placed in various burial chapels at Roskilde Cathedral. King Christian VII’s sarcophagus is placed in his fathers King Frederik V’s (1723-1766 - ruled Denmark and Norway 1746-1766)- Chapel at Roskilde Cathedral - and can be visited there during opening hours. King Christian VII (1749-1808 - ruled Denmark and Norway 1766-1808).

See: Roskilde Cathedral

"A Royal Affair" - The True Story and Screenplay
The main screenplay is the true story about a young Danish Queen Caroline Matilda - who is married to an insane Danish king - King Christian VII - and falls secretly in love with her German physician - Johann Friedrich von Struensee - and together they start a revolution that changes a nation forever - but ended dramatically by the fall and execution of Struensee in 1772.

The Film "A Royal Affair" has been shown in several cinemas around the world - and the DVD has been released by Zentropa Film.
Special Guided Tours - “A Royal Affair”
We arrange and offer special guided day tours for groups that are interested to visit and experience the many places in Copenhagen - where this historical and authentic drama took place - and will use this excursion to trace and follow the foot steps of all the royalties this film is based on. Take a historical tour - while you are visiting Copenhagen!
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