Queen Hedvig Eleonora
Hedvig Eleonora was the daughter of Fredrik III of Holstein Gottorp and Maria Eleonora of Saxony. She grew up in a culturally prominent Baroque court, where art and knowledge were of great importance. In 1654 she married Karl X Gustav.
The extensive land she was assigned enabled her to carry out grand construction projects, such as the palaces at Drottningholm, Ulriksdal and Strömsholm, as well as hiring architects and artists. Her court thus evolved into a cultural centre, the like of which had never been seen in Sweden.
Hedvig Eleonora played an important role in the founding of Lund University, and helped to establish Sweden's spa culture.
Hedvig Eleonora was part of the regency governments for both her son Karl XI and her grandson Karl XIII.
Queen Hedvig Eleonora portrayed by the French artist Nicolas Vallari (died 1674). The painting hangs at Gripsholm Castle, and is part of the Swedish State Portrait Collection. Photo: Nationalmuseum