"by blood a king,
in heart a clown"
~ A.L. Tennyson
Of a king, a certain measure of honor is required. A king must be a model for the conduct of his people, a bastion of strength and honor in a world fraught with peril. But some kings say “F*ck that sh*t” and throw a great big lifelong party, and the theme of this party is being an assh*le. This series is dedicated to kings who served not as a guiding light for their people, but as the bogeyman in their f*cking nightmares.
CHRISTIAN VII OF DENMARK (1766-1808)
In modern times, Denmark is consistently ranked as having the some of the world’s happiest people and the lowest level of government corruption. The people of Denmark one day, it seems, banded together and said “Hey, let’s do without being ruled by a psychopath who runs through the streets smashing up our sh*t.” And such a psychopath, they did have.
Now bear in mind, I don’t use the term ‘psychopath’ lightly. The guy was no Hannibal Lecter. But he was out of his sh*t enough to warrant a comparison to one of the most demented dudes the human imagination has ever come up with, and Christian VII was a real guy.
It wasn’t all his fault, though. From a young age, his private tutor chose to ignore the mainstream subjects of mathematics, law, and theology and instead taught young Christian how to be on the receiving end of some serious ass-whoopin’. I understand some kids are slow to learn their ABCs, but savage beatings that leave a kid on the ground with foam coming out of his mouth were a bit unconventional, even in those days.
So naturally, Christian acted out. But seeing as this was the 1760s and there were no Black Flag records to mosh to, Christian and his friends took to the streets of Copenhagen and mercilessly attacked random passersby. With clubs. That had f*cking spikes coming out of them. But that wasn’t his only outlet for aggression. His doctors reported that Christian would masturbate so frequently that they feared for his health. I mean, I live alone so I understand the appeal, but the health of the wiener is paramount. Especially when you’re supposed to use it to produce future kings and sh*t.
Justly, the people of Denmark were… concerned when young Christian VII took the throne at only 17. He soon married. His cousin. Who was 15. Yeah. And immediately unleashed waves of hate on her, publicly declaring it “unfashionable to love one’s wife.” I mean, thank you Captain Obvious.
As Christian aged, he progressed from annoying prankster to full-on mental case. Frail since childhood, he was obsessed with physical toughness and would rub salt into self-inflicted burns to prove that hey, he could be a chef if he wanted to. His behavior became increasingly bizarre – he would be found banging his head against his bedroom wall, he would violently attack members of his entourage, and would speak in tongues, which really was the best Max Cady impression in Danish history.
Naturally people asked, “Your Highness, will you not handle the affairs of state? Will you not oversee the maintenance of the kingdom?” But after asking the same question many times, and getting either a hysterical laughing fit or a bite on the cheek as an answer, people just stopped trying. Rule of the kingdom was handed over to his family, though Christian could still be seen in the windows of the palace, making faces at passersby or frantically searching his apartment for assassins.
Historians would later describe Christian’s incomprehensible speech, manic-depressive personality, and uncontrollable violence as symptoms of schizophrenia. Tough draw for the people of Denmark.
He must be a king.
Well he hasn’t got shit all over him.
Decent sunset from my ‘back yard’
Take A Heart by The Sorrows
First photo from the set of “The Hobbit”
I strive for this level of swag
@ SD Zoo
Today at SD Zoo