When, from there, one continues along the front aisle to the right, one arrives immediately at the compartment devoted to the kingdoms of Sweden and Norway. At the front of the room is a superb table of red porphyry and mosaic, on which is placed a large bowl of the same material: these two pieces, like all the others in the Swedish exhibition, come from the workshops of Elfdal in Sweden and belong to the King of Sweden.
To the right of this table is a mahogany dining table, of very ingenious construction, so as to be able to bend to the conditions of space of the room where it is to be placed: it is by Mr. Oison in Christiania. Several Norwegian objects are to be seen on this table, notably a silver table centrepiece, a silver and gold bodice for a country bride made by a Norwegian peasant, and several objects admirably carved in wood by peasants with simple knives that they make themselves.
Next to and in front of the compartments stands a lodge also filled with Norwegian goods, such as cotton and woolen cloth, the beginning of these industries in Norway, clothes made of grey felt without a runner, excellent surgical instruments from Christiania, a sextant with three glasses. Behind this lodge rises a second one, also Norwegian, where one notices very beautiful bindings, cutlery made by peasants, two statuettes representing a peasant and a peasant woman from Hallingdal, dressed in their wedding costumes, a superb chronometer! Then there is an armchair made of a tree trunk and very artistically carved by a simple peasant; a beautiful birch secretary, by a carpenter from Frederik stadt; a magnificent carved oak cupboard, from the seventeenth century, and restored by a peasant in such a way that one cannot distinguish the repairs from the old parts.
More in the middle of the compartments are low display cabinets containing shoes, brushes and artificial flowers of Swedish manufacture. In addition, there are a number of carved wooden objects, including a cassette with a group on top representing Napoleon in bivouac, as well as two bas-reliefs, Gustavus Adolphus' landing in Germany and Napoleon on the triumphal chariot.
On the right-hand side, and in the corner with the showcases which we have just left, rise other showcases containing sheets, damasks, superb furs, among others a sable coat at a price of 800fr., excellent paintings of lonkoping which won a prize at the London exhibition; the other side of these showcases, that is to say the one which looks on to the Dutch exhibition, contains cottons, woollens, furs and hosiery, all products of Sweden.
Returning to the compartment, one sees, opposite the window of sheets, a window containing albums and other bindings, they gloves so sought after abroad under the name of Swedish gloves. Following the same aisle, one encounters on the right a large display case containing magnificent embroideries in wool and silk, in relief and flat, silks of very good quality, an enormous Victoria Regia flower in wax, bouquets in fish scale, graceful baskets in sculpted and varnished leather; At the back, on the side of the Dutch exhibition, there are very elegant trimmings in wool and silk, painted papers, very fine glassware and earthenware, perfumed soaps, among which is a life-size bust of the King of Sweden.
Inside the compartment and opposite the previous display case is a long display case filled with several fine pieces of Stockholm silverware, including a huge silver flower vase, a silver testimonial given to a Swedish architect, two jars of original shape, one representing a tree trunk, the other a sheaf of wheat. There are also several excellent wind instruments and a host of small objects made of birch bark, including a piece of bark cloth embroidered with silk, a curiosity that is certainly unique of its kind.
In the centre of the compartment and around the square through which the light falls into the galleries below, there is a model of a bridge with a lock; a huge relief representing one of the most remarkable parts of the famous Trolhalta canal; a telegraphic apparatus invented by Professor Edlund in Lund, by means of which it is possible to send two dispatches from both ends on the same wire and at the same time.
Nearby are surgical instruments, expensive chronometers, one of which, made by Mr. Soderberg of Stockholm, proved its worth during the round-the-world voyage of the Swedish frigate Eugenie; and let us not forget an enormous drinking horn, a true representative of ancient Scandinavia. On the same side are several beautiful models of hydraulic constructions, among others, a hydraulic apparatus operating two sawmills, four pumps and a piling machine at the same time; moreover, a bridge of new construction: these two pieces, admirably executed, are from Mr. Hansen in Helsingborg. Next to it are several beautiful vases of red, pink, green and black porphyry.
Nearby is a beautiful grand piano, of excellent sound, by Gothenburg, at the modest price of 2,000 fr. A portrait of King Oscar of Sweden, embroidered in silk, is leaning against it.
We thus arrived at the back of the compartment, the wall of which forms two elegantly decorated boxes surmounted by the combined arms and flags of Sweden and Norway. At the back of the right-hand box is the portrait of King Oscar, embroidered in silk, surrounded by two magnificent silk curtains embroidered in twenty-two colours, and flanked by two beautiful columns supporting porphyry vases. In front of it are placed a pedestal table and a cast iron bench, ornamented and pierced to the day and imitating wood in an astonishing way. A salon organ and a pianino adorn the two sides of this box. At the back of the left-hand dressing room is a woollen embroidery depicting the Emperor Napoleon III on horseback; there are also two carpets, also embroidered, and beautiful furniture made of various woods, covered in silk and leather and decorated with embroidery. In front of the room is an elegant little porphyry pedestal table, a gift from King Oscar to the Empress of the French.
If you then turn left, along the wall, you will come to the Danish exhibition. The back of its compartment forms, like that of Sweden, two boxes decorated with the national colours and arms. The box next to Sweden's contains upright and square pianos from Copenhagen. On the pillar between the two Danish boxes is a bronze bust of the present King Frederick VII. The back of the second Danish box is occupied by a large and beautiful carved oak bookcase from Mr. Hansen in Copenhagen and some other furniture.
Turning and walking up to the gallery balustrade, one sees first, immediately in front of the boxes, several superb grand pianos from Copenhagen. The middle display cabinets contain gloves, shoes, playing cards, hard rubber items and steel jewellery, all special products from Denmark. In the centre of the room is a rich collection of chronometers, compasses and marine compasses, instruments that are made in Copenhagen to perfection. Further forward is a very ingenious but complicated type-setting machine. In front of and near the balustrade of the gallery is a sort of dressing room: one sees the products of the Royal Porcelain Factory of Copenhagen, among others a large number of biscuit bas-reliefs, after Thornwaldsen, as well as busts and statuettes in biscuit. On the side of the balustrade are excellent musical instruments, stuffed foxes and birds, and a model of a Sund pilot's ship.
When one then turns back, there is a long double row of display cases on the left, containing cotton and woolen fabrics on one side, papers and especially furs on the other. There are superb unprepared reindeer, polar bear, seal and white fox skins.
©Promenades dans l'exposition de 1855