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The Sword of State

The sword of state is a traditional symbol of military power and justice.

The Norwegian Sword of State originally belonged to King Carl Johan. French by birth, Carl Johan’s given name was Jean Baptiste Bernadotte. He made his military career under Napoleon, from whom it is said he received the sword upon his appointment as Marshal of France. Bernadotte was later elected Swedish crown prince and took the name Carl Johan. He is said to have carried the sword in the Battle of Leipzig in 1813, in which he fought against Napoleon, his former commander.

Assuming the sword truly did belong to him when he served as the French Marshal, King Carl Johan had the blade, grip and sheath refashioned to reflect its new role as the sword of state.


The blade consists of steel engraved with symbols of the union between Norway and Sweden, the Norwegian coat of arms and the Three Crowns of Sweden.

The grip is made of gilt bronze with inlaid mother-of-pearl, and ends in a knob shaped like an acorn.

The sheath is decorated with engraved oak leaves and mother-of-pearl.

Length: 110 cm
Weight: 1,300 g




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