eric xiv

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Royal Birthdays for today, December 13th:

Eric XIV, King of Sweden, 1533

Henry IV, King of France and Navarre, 1553

Yongzheng Emperor, Emperor of China, 1678

Ludwig, Archduke of Austria, 1784

Marina of Greece and Denmark, Duchess of Kent, 1906

Maria da Glória, Duchess of Segorbe, 1946

Aymeric, Prince of Belgium, 2005

Nicolas, Prince of Belgium, 2005

This is probably one of my favourite paintings. It was painted by Finnish Erik Johan Löfgren and it portrays king Eric XIV of Sweden and his wife, queen Karin Månsdotter.

I saw this painting couple of years ago in Joensuu Art Museum. It’s actually rather big - I think it would cover an entire wall in my apartment.

Eric XIV was the eldest son of Gustav I, who restored kingship in Sweden after the Danish rule. Before marrying Karin, who was of very common origins, Eric courted Elizabeth I of England among others. Eric’s rule only lasted for 8 years until he was deposed by his younger brother John. Eric, suffering from schizophrenia, was imprisoned and likely murdered.