Arendelle is a fictional kingdom in the film Frozen. It is the Norwegian-inspired home of Princess Anna, Queen Elsa, and various other characters. The kingdom is set in a time similar to the 1840s, but since Rapunzel and Eugene from Tangled appeared in Frozen, it's possible it took place in the 1780s, the time-frame for Tangled.
Due to the unstable nature of Elsa's magic, the late king ordered the castle gates to be closed in the dual interests of protecting his people from Elsa's magic and to shield her from their possible persecution. On the day of Elsa's coronation, when her magical abilities were exposed to the public, Elsa ran away and unintentionally triggered severe winter weather conditions that froze the kingdom. While Elsa was gone and Anna searched for her, Hans bore the task of protecting the kingdom. Ultimately, Anna's efforts and love for her sister provided Elsa with the knowledge necessary to control her winter magic and thus undo the spell of eternal winter plaguing Arendelle.
Official CrestThe official crest of Arendelle is the crocus, which has a ubiquitous presence on banners, capes, uniforms, wallpaper, and jewelry. The colors green and purple, and to a lesser extent, yellow, also have some significance to the kingdom. Official designs usually have a golden-yellow crocus with three petals and two leaves emblazoned upon a split background featuring purple on the left and green on the right.
Arendelle is located near a fjord, making it a viable trading center. Its human population appears to be densely concentrated within the castle perimeter, although there is human activity in the forest due to the presence of Wandering Oaken's Trading Post and Sauna.
There are also non-human populations, such as animals in the forest and trolls in the Valley of the Living Rock. In addition to the fjord and forest area, Arendelle is also in the vicinity of mountains, the most prominent being the imposing North Mountain.
The kingdom is subject to the succession of seasons, having both warm summers and frigid winters. In the winter, there is a noticeable decrease in plant life and animal activity. However, in the summer, Arendelle's flora flourishes, with lush vegetation covering the cliff sides and flowers growing plentifully.
It is worth noting that Arendelle is in a position that is conducive for observing the aurora borealis.
Government System: Monarchy
Head of State: The King/or Queen
Religious Authority: The Bishop
Arendelle is a small kingdom ruled by a king and/or queen. Elsa's coronation shows that females can inherit the throne, though this may have been due to a lack of male heirs. Also, following Elsa's temporary abdication of the throne, Anna appeared to be in control, as she was capable of placing Prince Hans in control while she departed to retrieve Elsa.
Arendelle's monarch possesses a wide variety of roles and powers. The head of state appears to have the role of judge and executioner, as shown during Hans' brief reign when he sentences Elsa to death for treason and personally sets out to kill her (though this may be more of a reflection of his malevolent nature). The reigning monarch has full control over economic affairs, as shown by Elsa's decision to cut all business ties with Weselton. The sovereign also has the power to appoint officials and create new positions, as shown by Elsa making Kristoff the first "Official Arendelle Ice Master and Deliverer."
It is unknown who oversaw the kingdom's affairs in the intermediate period between the death of Elsa and Anna's parents and Elsa's coming of age; however, it's possible the steward, Kai, was placed in charge of the kingdom during that time.
Though the Bishop doesn't appear to hold any direct political power, he is responsible for heading the coronation ceremony and thus, he bears the responsibility of bestowing the right to rule upon an individual. The coronation ceremony is a very symbolic event in which the prospective monarch must grasp Arendelle's regalia and face his/her subjects while the Bishop ordains him/her in Old Norse.
Though no formal military is ever seen, Arendelle does have royal guards who are adept at spear-throwing, as seen during their raid on Elsa's ice palace. They are unquestionably loyal to the royal family of Arendelle as they immediately moved to close the gates at Elsa's request when she decided to cut the coronation festivities short. They also placed their loyalty in Hans at Anna's request despite knowing little about the outsider.
Due to Arendelle's proximity to the fjord and the presence of docks, it's possible the kingdom has a formidable naval presence. However, it's equally likely the docks are reserved for ships with purely commercial purposes as the Duke of Weselton said that Arendelle, had tradable goods.
Places of Interest
- Arendelle Castle: Home of the royal family of Arendelle.
- Arendelle Chapel: This is where Elsa is crowned as the new queen of Arendelle.
- Elsa's Ice Palace: Freely expressing her feelings with her ice powers, Elsa created her ice castle after her self-imposed exile.
- The Forest: The forest outside of the village is inhabited by wolves and other animals. It is also where Wandering Oaken's Trading Post and Sauna can be found. Anna journeyed into the forest to find Elsa, only to lose her horse and end up at Wandering Oaken's Trading Post and Sauna.
- The Ice Fields: The frozen lakes where the ice harvesters, including Kristoff, work.
- North Mountain: Where Elsa went after her self-imposed exile and created an ice palace. Also where Anna, Kristoff, Olaf and Sven went to find Elsa so she could bring back summer.
- Valley of the Living Rock: The large valley home of the trolls.
- The Village: The village outside the castle gates. It is where the citizens of Arendelle live.
- Arendelle's appearance was based on a city in Norway called Bergen.
- The name 'Arendelle' is based on the Norwegian town of Arendal, located southwest of the Norwegian capital, Oslo.
- The origin of the name "Arendal": The Old Norse form of the name was probably Arnardalr. The first element is the genitive case of ǫrn, 'eagle' and the last element is dalr, meaning 'valley' or 'dale'.
- The crocus is a symbol of rebirth and spring. In colder regions, the flower bursts forth while snow is still on the ground.
- Arendelle's crest can be seen during the credits. It appears during the "Cast" section.
- The decorative designs emblazoned throughout the architecture in Arendelle was based on the actual Norwegian concept of rosemaling. Rosemaling is a Norwegian folk art that focuses on using stylized flower ornamentation. This flower motif also presents itself on clothing (i.e. Anna and Elsa's coronation attire) and it even extends to Elsa's magic.