Harald V of Norway

Harald V (Norwegian pronunciation: [ˈhɑ̂rːɑɫ dɛn ˈfɛ̂mtə];[3] born 21 February 1937) is the King of Norway. He acceded to the throne on 17 January 1991.

Harald V
King Harald V in Oslo in 2016
King of Norway
Reign17 January 1991 – present
Benediction23 June 1991[1]
PredecessorOlav V
Heir apparentHaakon
Prime ministers
Born (1937-02-21) 21 February 1937 (age 84)
Skaugum, Akershus, Norway
(m. 1968)
FatherOlav V, King of Norway
MotherPrincess Märtha of Sweden
ReligionChurch of Norway

Harald was the third child and only son of King Olav V and Princess Märtha of Sweden. He was second in the line of succession at the time of his birth, behind his father. In 1940, as a result of the German occupation during World War II, the royal family went into exile. Harald spent part of his childhood in Sweden and the United States. He returned to Norway in 1945, and subsequently studied for periods at the University of Oslo, the Norwegian Military Academy, and Balliol College, Oxford.

Following the death of his grandfather Haakon VII in 1957, Harald became crown prince as his father became king. A keen sportsman, he represented Norway in sailing at the 1964, 1968, and 1972 Olympic Games, and later became patron of World Sailing. Harald married Sonja Haraldsen in 1968, their relationship having initially been controversial due to her status as a commoner. The couple have two children, Märtha Louise and Haakon. Harald became king following his father's death in 1991, with Haakon becoming his heir apparent.

He is a great-grandson of King Edward VII of the United Kingdom and second cousin of Elizabeth II.

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