Today in History - October 23rd. 1636 - Hedvig Eleonora of Holstein-Gottorp - Queen Consort of Sweden

Hedvig Eleonora was born on October 23rd. 1636 as sixth of sixteen children
of Duke Frederick III of Holstein-Gottorp and Marie Elisabeth of Saxony.

Hedvig Eleonora - Source picture: Wikipedia

One day after her eighteenth birthday she married King Charles X of Sweden on
October 24th. 1654.

This wedding was arranged for political reasons. The marriage was an alliance 
between Sweden and Holstein-Gottorp against their mutual enemy Denmark.

Charles X chose Hedwig Eleonora because of her beauty after he saw her portrait.

The couple had one child, who became later Charles XI of Sweden.

On February 13th. 1660 Charles X died and Hedvig Eleonora became regent
because her son still was a child. But tragedy continued ...

On April 5th. 1697 Hedvig Eleonora's son Charles XI died and she became
regent for her grandson Charles XII, this time for one year.

Hedvig Eleonora was very interested in culture and sciences. She has been
described as firm and dominant but the Queen consort was popular at court
for her humour and because of her fondness of parties. She was regarded as
strict but fair by her employees.

Besides culture and sciences Hedvig Eleonora was interested in architecture
and painting as well as playing cards. Her appetite for gambling was great and
she would have played cards till late into the night.

She sponsored artists and many palaces, among them the Drottningholm Palace,
are the result of Hedwig Eleonora's love for architecture.

Hedvig Eleonora died on November 24th. 1715. With her death a strong woman
was lost at the Swedish Court.
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