Holger Danske Yawns, Goes Back to Sleep

In the early days of this blog, when I first began my researches into Scandinavia and discovered the joys of Denmark, I learned the story of Holger Danske, “Holger the Dane”, the military hero and champion of pre-Christian Denmark.

Although Holger was a heathen, and had previously made war against the Franks, he journeyed south to what is now France to join his former adversaries in their war against the common enemy, the Saracens of al-Andalus. According to the chronicles, Holger fought alongside Charles Martel in the Battle of Poitiers in 732. That decisive victory over the hosts of Mohammed drove Islam back over the Pyrenees into Iberia — from which stronghold the Moors were not permanently ejected for another 760 years.

According to legend, when his illustrious career was over Holger Danske retired to a cellar deep under Kronborg castle at Helsingør, where he went to sleep. He is still sleeping there, and will only awake in the hour of Denmark’s greatest need.

Hans Christian Andersen told the story this way (my translation):

But the fairest sight of all is the old castle of Kronborg, and under it sits Holger Danske in the deep, dark cellar which no one enters; he is clad in iron and steel and rests his head on his stalwart arm; his long beard hangs down upon the marble table where it has become stuck fast; he sleeps and dreams, but in his dreams he sees everything that comes to pass in Denmark. Every Christmas Eve an angel of God comes to tell him that all he has dreamed is true, and that he may go to back to sleep again, for Denmark is not yet in any danger! but if it should ever come, then old Holger Danske will rouse himself, and the table will break apart as he pulls out his beard! Then he will come forth, and strike a blow that shall be heard throughout all the countries of the world.

Given the alarming circumstances in 21st-century Denmark — not to mention the rest of the West — I was inspired to photoshop a little image of Holger for our sidebar. In it the old warrior is beginning to stir, and one of his gimlet eyes has popped open. With the help of my Danish friend Kepiblanc, I captioned the image with “Holger Danske Vågner”, which I like to translate as “Holger the Dane is Stirring”. According to Kepiblanc, it means “he is not awakening yet, but he will do so very soon.”

I eventually visited Kronborg castle myself and took a photo of the famous statue of Holger in its place of permanent display in the cellars. I adapted that to be the basis for a much larger version of “Holger Danske Vågner”, and used it to make coffee mugs, T-shirts, etc. for our (now dormant) Café Press site.

Today I received an email from a reader about what happened to him while he was wearing one of our Holger Danske T-shirts:

I thought you might be interested in my experience. I’m afraid it is more an indictment of today’s average young person than anything else.

I bought one of the Holger Danske T-shirts some time back, I was wearing it while grocery shopping when a young fellow came up to me and told me what a cool T-shirt it was. Seemed a nice twenty-plus guy, so when he asked about it, I started telling him the story that goes with it. I got so far as letting him know that this was a historical legend dating to 732, that an actual battle was involved, about which he could read, when he stopped me.

Basically he politely told me that he thought maybe the T-shirt was about a new video game. Since it wasn’t, he had other things to do, and left.

Oh well — I expect he will be interested someday. Hope it isn’t to late…

I used to think that if we all worked hard enough at our Counterjihad educational activities, we would eventually gain the attention of a sufficient number of people, particularly young people, so as to actually be able to make a difference and begin to turn the tide.

But now I’m not so sure. Years of hard experience have disabused me of any hope that we can accomplish our task quickly. Final success certainly won’t come in my lifetime.

It seems that old Holger just rolled over and went back to sleep, saying: “Don’t wake me up again unless it’s a real emergency.”

33 thoughts on “Holger Danske Yawns, Goes Back to Sleep

  1. With your talents, perhaps taking the lesson to a video game may not be such a bad idea.

    • You’re right, that would be a good idea. I’d need a lot of help from the youngsters, though.

      A sort of Duke Nukem character, except it’s Holger Danske. The Saracens keep coming at him, yelling “Allahu akhbar”, and he chooses his weapon — broadsword, axe, mace, etc. — and proceeds to cut them into bloody splinters.

      Yes, I can just see it on the screen…

      • It would be só cool, Baron.. If anything can wake vacant and absent western kiddies to our plight it must be a game..
        Although – a movie would be nice too. Why is nobody planning to film the story of Jan Sobieski, or the battle of Poitiers??
        Since the Koch bros can’t seem to get their gifts accepted for being rightist suspects, they might well consider financing a wake up movie?

        • A major film and related project including a theme park based on the novel, “Victoria”
          by Cezary Harasimowicz WAS in production back in 2008 in Poland. The lavish website for this production included the most enchanting soundtracks which are no longer accessible. So much promise…poof, simply, inexplicably vanished online. I would love to see this project picked up again.

        • “Why is nobody planning to film the story of Jan Sobieski, or the battle of Poitiers??”

          Paardestaart, such movies can be found on Youtube.

          Do not expect to see them as DVDs nor as TV broadcasts; look on Youtube.

  2. As you say, Baron, I am afraid to say that the situation in Europe is getting worse everyday and it seems that the final result will be the obliteration of the european civilization and its native population within a century. Perhaps something could happen to turn the tide but it is quite uncertain.

    As I am spaniard, I would like to say some words about the moors and their invasion of Spain in 711. I don’t want to diminish the victory of Charles Martel or Holger and others in the battle of Poitiers over the moors. It was an important battle that stopped them and made them withdraw back to the Iberian peninsula. But I think most europeans focus only in this battle and forget the benefits for the rest of Europe of our eight centuries liberation war against the muslims in the Iberian Peninsula. Spain is perhaps the only country in the world that suffered an islamic invasion and succeded in recovering again its whole territory and its sovereignty. A small bunch of people in the northwest of Spain, after the battle of Covadonga in Oviedo, started a long and hard process known as Reconquista, that enabled them to expand southward very slowly, fighting battle after battle in order to recover the lost territories. It prevented muslims to launch much more attacks on european soil as they had to fight against them. Well, the italians suffered also several attacks on its territory during the period, but without any doubt if we had not fought them hard there would have been many other battles like that of Poitiers beyond the Pyrenees. It is also true that some european crusades helped us sometimes, for example in 1212, but nowadays most europeans doesn’t seem to pay attention to what we achieved and its consecuences for the rest of Europe.

    • The Spaniards should certainly take pride in the fact that they have freed themselves from the Muslim invasion. The North African Berbers across the channel are still the dogs of their Arab masters.

      • Yeah, you are right. It was almost miracle after miracle, if you read about the history of the Reconquista, but fortunately at the end we succeded. Nowadays the muslim invasion has started again but this time from the inside and without fighting, -helped by the European Union, I would say defrayed- and also without being able to fight (at least from the native european side). I wish we, all europeans, could suceed again.

        • I share your dream, but first Europeans have to reconquer the right to stand up for their native/ethnic rights and debunking the term “racism” as an ideological construct.

    • @Pelayo Favilaz : Europe’s culture and Christian traditions are being diluted and most Europeans I have come across are living in the blissful state of ignorance. The FIFA World Cup and where the royals vacation are more important to them than freedoms they think they have. They are acutely aware of the Muslim problem but, I believe choose to be willfully ignorant, or, have been severely indoctrinated by their governments, education system, and media.

      • Hi, Carax, what you say is absolutely true but in Spain the problem is even worse because besides it most people don’t understand english and the vast majority of news or literature about islam is written in english. The mass media don’t inform very much about it or even misinform. So websites like this are not even known in my country, what is a real pitty.

    • The Reconquesta was certainly a facinating period in european history. And it proves that once muslims has settled in a country, that country will sooner or later become a competely muslim country, unless the muslims are thrown out, as you managed to do. But I can’t imagine that will happen again in any european country. There are no El Cid in the horizon. The muslims are too numerous and they are protected by our rat-bastard politicians. And in the background hovers the ghost of demographic collapse. Italy, Spain and other countries are now in a state of demographic collapse, but I don’t know if most people are aware of it. The “white” population are going extinct, while the muslims multiply. The situation is really serious. Something like this has never happened before in european history, not as far as I know.

      • How right you are in all what you say, Randers! Just to put an example, in the Basque country – in spite of the name is also Spain – the local government pays 400 € per month and child to inmigrants while there is no such money for native people. I know, personally, the case of a muslim who earned 1200 € per month without having to work only because he had three children. A lot of people here don’t have any children or have only one, because due to the crysis and the work instability is quite difficult to earn enough money to bring up children. Native population is collapsing slowly and everyday you see more and more muslim families with three children or more everywhere, but, as you say, nobody seems to be aware of it.

        Sometimes I feel like Cassandra, foreseeing the fall of the european civilization and its obliteration while the rest of people only try to have fun, see the Champions League or entertain themselves. I presume that the romans didn’t realize either that their empire was going to fall in the fifth century. And when you try to speak about the subject is like to pray in the desert. The multiculturalist lies have spread wide along the country and nobody seems to care about the fact that everyday there is less native population and more and more muslims and southafricans (some of them muslims too), who will replace us demographically within a century.

        I have almost given up hope of stopping this last invasion of Europe and the extinction of the native population, because our damn politicians and the European Union have sold us to the muslims for their oil and their money. And the few who have the courage to bring some light on islam are accused of racism, hatred or even taken to court, as we see very often in the Gates of Viena website. These are real hard times and the future is quite uncertain.

        • Then maybe you should just go for them and the European crooks who support them. After all, like the name of the game says, no one lives forever. When the doctor announces you that you have only a few more months to live then maybe go and pay Prime Minister a visit. Oh, I forgot. These new generations of Europeans are too weak and fragile to go and fight they prefer bitching about it. I like the story of the ancient fighter, for the one telling stories about him clearly did not kill any Muslim enemy in his whole life. The old fighter is not pleased.

  3. At the very end of what is now known as the viking age, Sigurd the Crusader (Old Norse: Sigurðr Jórsalafari, the name meaning Sigurd who went to Jerusalem) went south for the Norwegian Crusade, the first European king to do so. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sigurd_the_Crusader

    Left out of the tale in the English language wikipedia page is the story of the travels southward, how he traveled with 60 ships (100 men in each) and that he helped both Portuguese and Spanish kings in fighting off the Muslims there, and freed the towns of Sintra, Lisboa and Alcacer do Sal on their behalf. When he arrived into the Mediterranean sea he conquered the islands of Formentera, Ibiza and Menorca on Balearene away from the emir Mubassir ibn Sulayman al-Nassir ad-Daula. After arriving at his destination he helped king Baldwin I of Jerusalem in several military conquests. ( http://no.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sigurd_Jorsalfare )
    Around 100 men of the original 6000 came back to Norway, over land after visiting Byzantine.

    Holger the Dane, Sigurd the Crusader and others did things a thousand years and more ago that most have forgotten today. Their descendants still lives in the same places, and their spirits (or genes) may one day awaken, if not their bodies.

    • Henry Treece wrote an account for children of Siguard the Crusader’s adventures called The Road to Miklagard (1957), part of his Viking trilogy, and worth a read even for adults.


      Quote from wiki: “Harald is now a young man whose father has died. He has a complicated series of adventures which takes him to a giant’s treasure cave in Ireland, then Jebel Tarik (Gibraltar), then to Miklagard (the Viking’s name for Constantinople) where he joins the famous Varangian Guard. Eventually Harald returns home to Norway via the great ship-portage on the Dnieper.”

      • Yes, but please note that the books you suggest are novels about a fictional character, compounding several historical events into the life of a single made up person.

        Sigurd the Crusader was a real king of Norway, and the accounts of his travels recorded as historical facts. Embellishments are possible given the oral traditions of those times, but the core is factual.

    • “Holger the Dane, Sigurd the Crusader and others did things a thousand years and more ago that most have forgotten today.”

      Meanwhile, across the continent Europeans are being purposefully deceived about islam’s hatred for them, whilst muslims across Europe are naming their children after ruthless islamic murderers: “Mohammed”, “Abu Hamza”, “Shahid” and even “Jihad”.

      I have Spanish friends with surnames like “Mato Moros” (Moor Killer), but the Spanish seem now to be the most dhimmified and deceived in Europe. Thankfully the Portguese are not so deceived: one of my friends from the country tells me that the Reconquista is a subject still proudly taught in their schools. However, he is almost 40 years old and has lived outside Portugal for a decade. Perhaps in his absence, the Portuguese have too been brainwashed.

    • Years ago, around the beginning of the Iraq war, I heard an American of Norwegian origin (an immigrant decades earlier) talking about how marvelous it was that the Norwegians had gone from being fearsome Vikings to being great advocates of “peace,” specially entrusted with awarding the Nobel Peace Prize. I couldn’t helping thinking: Maybe they should have settled somewhere in the middle.

      Historically, Norway hasn’t needed much of a defense force because the land is not the sort of place that hungry migrants would find promising; instead, its people went out looking for resources to grab, or looking for more hospital places to settle. (When my father first got a look at where his ancestors had eked out a living in Norway, he said he could see why some of them left.)

      Now that they’re sitting pretty on North Sea oil, and with a modern technological economy, many Norwegians seem to have lost any awareness that basic self-preservation might be a challenge.

      • Norway’s historically very real and renewable resource is fish. There is not much focus on those resources in our days, but in historic time it was very important and it may well become even more so in the future. It has been traded throughout the world for hundreds of years.

        Norway was occupied by three other countries throughout history, by Denmark for 400 years, by Sweden for 100 years and by Germany for 5 years. Iceland, Greenland and parts of what is now Sweden was lost is the process. Whoever wants to control the resources of the North Sea needed Norway. So, in modern times Norway as a free nation is just over a 100 years old. It is not that the nation does not need military defense, it is more like the larger nations around it has not allowed that to happen, helped by “national” politicians bent on “dialogue” and “peace in hour time”.

        What represents resources or not is not as obvious as some are led to believe. After the oil and natural gas was found, this becomes even more obvious. Under those deposits, unknown amounts (huge) of coal is deposited. On land one of the largest deposits of Thorium (look it up) in the world resides. What could be found in the future is difficult to know. The fish alone is a large resource, the known additional resources are huge, the known potential resources are good, and the potential for other stuff unknown.

        You are right in your conclusion, the Norwegian population has been bought off with material goods, to descend into a “let the state fix it” kind of mentality. I honestly believe that many people living today with regret this type of organisation for our country, as they will in many others. It is the most perfect form of socialism yet invented, and they get away with calling it capitalism.

  4. SciFi convention and Anti-Jihad

    Although an atheist, I attended the Rally against persecution of Christians in Dallas, May 17, 2014, which featured Robert Spencer and Wallid Shoebat, among others.

    At the same time, in the same general area, the Dallas Comic Convention was being held. The Rally had maybe 50 participants (being generous) while the Comic Convention had tens of thousands.

    To be truthful, if I had known the Comic Convention was being held that day, I would have attended myself, in flamboyant costume, and attended the Rally in said costume. I would also consider making leaflets available (if asked) to the convention participants, assuring them that such a fun-loving, harmless, and colorful event would not even come near to being tolerated under any regime that sniffed of Islam.

    I actually viewed every participant as a potential anti-jihad person, not because they want to get into the dismal details of Islamic doctrine and canonical laws, but out of pure self-defense. There is an additional benefit, in that these people like to use their imagination, and perhaps their logic processes have not calcified. Some or most of them might actually be able to follow logic.

    I hope to attend such conventions in the future. If there should be a happy coincidence of anti-jihad events with the conventions, I hope to enliven the rallies with a colorful costume, and maybe even a guest or two.

  5. The story reminded me of Holy Roman emperor Frederick Barbarossa, who also is sleeping in the mountain.

    Actually, there is long list of kings sleeping in the mountain – as the WP article dedicated to this topic documents:


    This shows that it is a general pattern (C. G. Jung would probably call it an archetype), that is omnipresent in the subconsciousness of Western peoples.

    • Not just Western. Barely on the Colorado side of the Four Corners, the Ute Indian tribe has a legend of a warrior god sleeping until needed again. Viewed from the East or West, the mountains look like a person laying on his back, with arms across the chest.

      Baron, as for your belief that with persistence that the alarm could be raised, Cassandra *was* blessed with the gift of prophecy, yet cursed with never being believed. Something in humankind’s psyche, that we ignore those warning of trouble. Perhaps related to the normalcy bias.

  6. The counter-jihad issue is important but I believe it is not as large a power-grabbing Brussels EU, the battle between Collectivism and Individualism, the control freaks versus the independent people etc. The Brussels government is growing and growing and any government big enough to give you everything you want is a government big enough to take from you everything you have…which they are doing, have done (the great Cyprus robbery and have contingency to do in the future. It will make the problems with Islam minor in comparison.

    • The Islam problem is harder to reverse than the collectivist problem once it takes over. The brainwashing inspires more fanaticism and a more ferocious censorship, for one thing (or two things). We rarely see individuals on their own initiative killing others for insulting the collectivist dogma, or killing themselves in the process and imaging they’ll go straight to paradise. Islam inspires exactly that kind of murderous enforcement by the faithful.

Comments are closed.