The song was made after Norges Vel announced a competition to write a new national anthem for Norway. Of 20 suggestions, «Sønner av Norge» was declared the winner in 1820. The lawyer and writer Henrik Anker Bjerregaar (1792-1842) wrote the text while the melody was composed by Christian Blom (1781-1861). Both received 100 spesidaler each as way of a prize.

In similarity with «Ja, vi elsker» it was never formally recognised as a national anthem, but established itself as such through practical use. As late as the turn of the 19th century both songs were used, but «Sønner av Norge» was used on more formal occastions.

Sønner av Norge, første vers

Sønner af Norges det ældgamle Rige,
Sjunger til Harpens den festlige Klang!
Mandigt og høitidsfuldt Tonen lad stige,
Fædrenelandet indvies vor Sang.
Fædreneminder herligt oprinder,
Hvergang vi nævne vor Fædrenestavn.
Svulmende Hjerter og glødende Kinder
Hylde det elskte, det hellige Navn.

Les mer og se hele sangen på Wikipedia