Thoresen, Cecilie (1858–1911)

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Thoresen, Cecilie (1858–1911)

Norwegian pioneer in the campaign for women's rights. Name variations: Cecilie Krog; Ida Cecilie Thoresen. Born Ida Cecilie Thoresen in Eidsvoll, Norway, in 1858; died in 1911; married Fredrik Arentz Krog (1844–1923, a lawyer); children: son Helge Krog (1889–1962, the dramatist).

Cecilie Thoresen applied to enter the University of Oslo (then known as the University of Kristiania) in 1880, but was refused. Two years later, the Norwegian Parliament passed a law permitting women to sit the matriculation examination and the preliminary level of university examinations. That year, she also matriculated and became the first woman to study at Oslo University. She also studied science at the University of Copenhagen.

In 1883, Thoresen was voted to membership of the Norwegian Students' Union, again the first woman to be admitted. The same year, she founded a discussion group for "the advancement of the women's cause," and became a board member of other women's associations. The Norwegian branch of the International Federation of University Women (NKAL, founded 1920) owed much to these early women's organizations.


Aschehoug & Glydendal's Store Norske Leksikon. Oslo: Kunnskapsforlag, 1992.

Lie & Rørslett, eds. Alma Maters døtre (Alma Mater's Daughters). Oslo: Pax, 1995.

Elizabeth Rokkan , translator, formerly Associate Professor, Department of English, University of Bergen, Norway

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