This timeline highlights some of the most significant events in the long and rich history of the Royal Academy, which dates back to its founding in 1742.


1742



Established and first meeting held on 13 November with founders Privy Councillor and Secretary General of the Danish Chancellery Johan Ludvig Holstein; Councillor of Justice, historiographer, philologist and historian Hans Gram; theologian, Bishop of Bergen and Professor Erik Pontoppidan; and Danish-Icelandic Privy Councillor, historian and Secretary of the Danish Chancellery Henrik Henrichsen (later Hielmstierne). Holstein became the first president and Henriksen the first secretary, the equivalent of today’s secretary general. Initial meetings were held at Holstein’s residence at Stormgade 261, now no. 10, in Copenhagen, where meetings were held up until Holstein’s death in 1763. Summer meetings were occasionally held at Otto Thott’s home on Studiestræde if Holstein was away.
 

1743


By royal decree King Christian appoints himself patron, officially conferring the academy with royal status and guaranteeing its financial support. 


1745


First volume of Skrifter published, which has continued to this day. The Royal Academy’s own publishing house continues to publish scientific writings.


1746


King Frederik V becomes patron.


17611843


Conducts geographic and trigonometric survey of Denmark and Slesvig-Holsten by establishing a Land Survey Commission comprising Bolle Willum Luxdorph, Henrik Hielmstierne, Christian Horrebow, Christian Hee and Jørgen Nicolai Holm, resulting in 24 accurate maps. Thomas Bugge was in charge of surveying from 1780–1815.


1763
 

Otto Thott becomes president.


1763


Member meetings move to Otto Thott’s mansion, the first held on 18 February. 

Purchased by Thott in 1761 from naval officer Niels Juhl, the building currently houses the French Embassy.


1766


King Christian VII becomes patron. 


17701776

 

Bereft of a president and premises, the Royal Academy meets at Secretary General Hielmstierne’s estate, located on what is now Frederiksholms Kanal 2 and 4 in Copenhagen. Little is known about meetings since there are no minutes.


1774


King Christian VII officially declares himself patron.


1776


Official statues adopted. Henrik Hielmstierne becomes president and Christian Frederik Jacobi becomes secretary general.

Permission granted to move to premises in the Prince’s Palace on the corner of Frederiksholms Kanal and Ny Vestergade in Copenhagen, which now houses the National Museum of Denmark.  


1780
 

Bolle Willum Luxdorph becomes president.


1788


Andreas Peter Bernstorff becomes president.


1794


Forced to vacate the Prince’s Palace and move to Charlottenborg to make room for the Supreme Court, which lost its premises in a wing of Christiansborg Palace due to a fire. No meetings were held in the temporary premises.


1795
 

Holds first meeting on 2 January after moving to new premises in Christiansborg Palace, which comprised two rooms with an anteroom on the first floor in the southern riding stables wing (Court Theatre Wing). This was where the Royal Academy were housed until 1854.

Peter Christian Abildgaard becomes secretary general.


1797
 

Thomas Bugge elected secretary general.


1801
 

Thomas Bugge vælges til Selskabets generalsekretær.


1808
 

King Frederik VI becomes patron.


1815
 

Hans Christian Ørsted becomes secretary general.

1826


Joachim Frederik Schouw becomes editor in chief, a post previously the responsibility of the archivist (18151822) and before that the secretary general (17421815).


1831


Adam Wilhelm Hauch becomes president.


 
1838
 

Prince Christian Frederik becomes president.


1839  

King Christian VIII becomes patron.


1845


President and patron King Christian VIII issues an edict requesting that a proposal be drawn up for the Galathea expedition, leading to the Galathea circumnavigating the globe for two years to conduct ship-based scientific research.


1848


King Frederik VII becomes patron.

Anders Sandøe Ørsted becomes president.


1851
 

Johan Georg Forchhammer becomes secretary general.


1852


Johan Nicolai Madvig becomes editor in chief.


1855
 

Return to the Prince’s Palace, with the first meeting held on 9 March and rooms located in the north wing divided between the first floor, workrooms and second-floor archive room.


1863   

King Christian IX becomes patron.


1866  

Japetus Steenstrup becomes secretary general.


1867  

Johan Nicolai Madvig becomes president and Johan Louis Ussing editor in chief.


1876

Brewer J.C. Jacobsen founds the Carlsberg Foundation to advance science and research. Scientists are elected by and from among members to the Carlsberg Foundation Board of Directors.


1878

Hieronymus Georg Zeuthen becomes secretary general and Vilhelm Thomsen editor in chief.


1879  

Charles Darwin becomes a corresponding member.


1888  

Julius Thomsen becomes president.


1895–1897  

P.S. Krøyer paints A meeting of the Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters, commissioned by the Carlsberg Foundation, which is then hung in shared premises the following year.


1899

Moves jointly with the Carlsberg Foundation to a Neo-Renaissance building designed by architect Vilhelm Petersen on Dantes Plads/H.C. Andersen’s Boulevard in Copenhagen.


1902  

Johan Ludvig Heiberg becomes editor in chief.


1906

King Frederik VIII becomes patron.


1909  

Vilhelm Thomsen becomes president.


1912  

King Christian X becomes patron.


1914  

J.C. Jacobsen’s domicile in Valby on the outskirts of Copenhagen bestowed as an honorary residence for outstanding researchers appointed by the Royal Academy.

Dines Andersen becomes editor in chief.


1917  

Martin Knudsen becomes secretary general.


1920  

Marie Skłodowska-Curie becomes what today is called a corresponding member, making her the first female member in the Royal Academy’s history.


1927

Niels Erik Nørlund becomes president.


1933

Anders Bjørn Drachmann becomes president.


1934


Holger Pedersen becomes president.


1938

Søren Peter Lauritz Sørensen becomes president.


1939

Niels Bohr becomes president and William Norvin editor in chief.


1941

Louis Leonor Hammerich becomes editor in chief.


1945

Jakob Niels Nielsen becomes secretary general.


1947

Frederik IX bliver protektor for Selskabet.


1959

Ebbe Rasmussen becomes secretary general.


1962

Christian Møller becomes secretary general.


1968

Johannes Pedersen becomes president.



1969

Eli Fischer-Jørgensen becomes first female Danish member. In 1920 Marie Skłodowska-Curie was the first female foreigner inducted.

1970

Bengt Strömgren becomes president.


1972

Poul Jørgen Riis becomes editor in chief.


1972

Queen Margrethe II becomes patron.


1976

Poul Jørgen Riis becomes president and Erik Dal editor in chief.


1976

For its centennial, the Carlsberg Foundation extensively remodels the Vilhelm Petersen building to accommodate the growing number of members and adds a large new hall for symposiums and public lectures, the first of which was held in October.


1982

Christian Crone becomes secretary general.


1985

Jens Lindhard becomes president.


1988

Thor A. Bak becomes secretary general.


1988

Erik Dal becomes president and Poul Lindegård Hjorth editor in chief.


1994

Henning Sørensen becomes president.


1996

Birger Munk Olsen becomes president.


1998

Flemming Lundgreen-Nielsen becomes editor in chief.


1999

Ole Hansen becomes secretary general.


2004

Tom Fenchel becomes president and Henrik Breuning-Madsen secretary general.


2006

Management changed to a presidium comprising seven people elected by members: president, secretary general, two class presidents, two class representatives and an editor in chief.


2008

Kirsten Hastrup becomes the first female president and Marita Akhøj Nielsen the first female editor in chief.


2009

Søren-Peter Olesen becomes secretary general.


2011

Mogens Høgh Jensen becomes secretary general.

Erik A. Frandsen’s glass mosaic installed in the New Meeting Hall as a gift from the New Carlsberg Foundation
in honour of the anniversary of brewer J.C. Jacobsen’s 200th birthday.

Establishes the Young Danish Academy.


2016

Mogens Høgh Jensen becomes president.

Lars Arge
 becomes secretary general.


2020

Marie Louise Nosch becomes president.


2021

Marianne Pade becomes editor in chief.

Thomas Sinkjær becomes secretary general.

Launches
Formidlingsakademiet, a three-year dissemination project supported by Carlsberg Foundation and Novo Nordisk Foundation.


2023  

Launches the three-year dissemination project VidenSkaber with the support of Carlsberg Foundation, Novo Nordisk Foundation and Lundbeck Foundation.



Videnskabernes Selskab bliver stiftet og holder sit første møde den 13. november. Stifterne er Johan Ludvig Holstein, lensgreve og oversekretær i Danske Kancelli; Hans Gram, justitsråd, kongelig historiograf, filolog og historiker; Erik Pontoppidan, teolog og professor samt biskop i Bergen; Henrik Henrichsen (senere Hielmstierne), dansk-islandsk gehejmeråd, historiker og sekretær i Danske Kancelli. Holstein bliver Selskabets første præsident, Henriksen dets første sekretær (svarende til generalsekretær i dag). Selskabets første møder holdes i Holsteins bolig i Stormgade, København, på matrikel nr. 261 (i dag nr. 10). Her holder Selskabet sine møder helt frem til 1763, da Holstein dør. Dog holdes nogle af sommermøderne, hvor Holstein ikke er hjemme, i Otto Thotts hus i Studiestræde.

Videnskabernes Selskabs medlemsmøder flyttes for en periode til præsident Otto Thotts palæ. Det første møde her afholdes den 18. februar.

Palæet, der var blevet købt af Thott i 1761, havde i sin tid tilhørt søofficer Niels Juhl. I dag huser stedet den franske ambassade.

Videnskabernes Selskabs medlemsmøder flyttes for en periode til præsident Otto Thotts palæ. Det første møde her afholdes den 18. februar.

Palæet, der var blevet købt af Thott i 1761, havde i sin tid tilhørt søofficer Niels Juhl. I dag huser stedet den franske ambassade.

Videnskabernes Selskabs medlemsmøder flyttes for en periode til præsident Otto Thotts palæ. Det første møde her afholdes den 18. februar.

Palæet, der var blevet købt af Thott i 1761, havde i sin tid tilhørt søofficer Niels Juhl. I dag huser stedet den franske ambassade.

Henrik Hielmstierne bliver præsident for Videnskabernes Selskab.

Prins Christian Frederik (fra 1839 kong Christian VIII) er præsident for Selskabet.

Johan Nicolai Madvig bliver præsident.

 Poul Lindegård Hjorth bliver redaktør for Selskabet.
Det Unge Akademi [RRP2] (DUA) stiftes under Videnskabernes Selskab.
Videnskabernes Selskab lancerer Formidlingsakademiet,[RRP3]  et treårigt formidlingsprojekt, med støtte fra Carlsbergfondet og Novo Nordisk Fonden.