Historical story

The king's love affairs, or how to find a wife when you are NOT a good game?

Eric XIV. As a matter of fact, I feel sorry for him. The English queen did not want him, the princess Renata of Lorraine did not succeed, and from Hesse his legation was chased by the father of a potential bride. His Majesty, however, did not give up…

During the reign of Eric XIV, Sweden was quite young in its independence. Only the king's father - Gustav I Vasa - broke off the Kalmar Union, uniting Denmark, Norway and Sweden under the rule of one monarch. If we take this into account, his concern about the heredity of the monarchy becomes understandable.

To be able to call a hereditary monarchy, you must have someone to hand over the crown to and be able to do so. That is why Gustaw I Waza devoted a lot of attention to securing the rights of his eldest son Erik and protecting them against the temptations of younger children and their mother.

Gustaw I. Eric's father and founder of the Vasa dynasty.

Before he died, he gave all his sons appropriate lands and made the firstborn king. In this way, little Eryczek turned into Eric XIV.

Our hero was twenty-seven years old when he ascended the throne. He was well-educated, well-read, outgoing, and probably just a little crazy at this stage. It can be safely said that the time has come for the wedding bells to sound!

After all, the new king wanted not only to secure his rightful heir, but also to find a counterbalance to the native nobility abroad. Counterweights - let us add - which will also raise the prestige of the monarchy still in the past.

Therefore, efforts were made to find a suitable wife. Let us present them briefly, using the book "Erik XIV. King of the People ”by Knut Carlqvist.

Goodbye Elizabeth

What can I say, His Majesty Erik was aiming high! The first candidate he considered was Queen Elizabeth of England. Even during the lifetime of Gustaw I, efforts were made to win the hand of the daughter of Henry VIII and Anna Boleyn.

At that time, the English Queen was the best party on the continent. According to the information contained in the "Dynasties of Europe" (collective work edited by Antoni Mączak), Eryk XIV was deeply interested in marrying Elizabeth.

Not for the Swede Elizabeth…

At the head of the legation of the Swedish king going to England was the bachelor's brother - Jan. The prince made a very good impression on the spot and skillfully recommended his brother, but he did not do much. In fact, one can get the impression that he made too good an impression, because the attention of the entire court was focused on the younger Jan, and the English scholar William Ward devoted the 70-page praise oration to him - not Erik.

The Swedish monarch, however, did not lose heart. When negotiations with Elizabeth reached a dead end, he asked his brother to propose on his behalf ... to Mary Stuart, also known as Mary Queen of Scots. Elżbieta, the second would-be queen of Sweden, finally capitulated (no, it was not about Eric). And here the fig with poppy seed came out of the marriage, because how to match with the queen without a head?

Even before the talks in England were over, Eryk learned that the Landgrave of Hesse, Filip the magnanimous, wanted to marry his daughter Krystyna.

As Sweden had problems with Denmark all the time, whose ruler was claiming the crown, the king's marriage to a mighty and related maid seemed an ideal solution. After all, a marriage with a Hessian princess meant that the Danish ruler was in check on both sides. Eric thought, thought, and sent a message to Hesse.

Beautiful as a rose flower after a bad storm?

Unfortunately, it was not easy. It turned out that apparently very beautiful (according to the description of her father's ambassador) Krystyna may in fact be beautiful as… November night. A certain Swedish knight had the opportunity to visit the court of the landgrave and personally see the pretty - in quotation marks - virgin. According to his account, Krystyna had an ugly complexion, which at that time was understood as the ugly remains of smallpox.

Krystyna Heska looks beautiful in the painting. In fact, her beauty left a lot to be desired, which made Eric very angry.

The annoyed king ordered the Hessian envoy to be summoned and demanded an explanation. When the summoned arrived, he began to swear that his princess was a truly beautiful woman!

Meanwhile, the talkative knight withdrew from his earlier judgments. He even stated that in the candlelight, Krystyna's appearance was somewhat indistinct, which meant that the image of her figure had to be distorted. The man barely escaped from being turned into a shish kebab - the furious king tried to stab him with a sword! And here it gets interesting.

Negotiations between Hesse and Sweden were almost complete, and Eric's delegation was getting ready to take the future queen to the country. But something went very, very wrong.

Well, because of the political situation, a Hessian-Swedish dynastic marriage would amount to a war with Denmark. As soon as Landgrave Philip realized this, he attempted to extricate himself from the awkward arrangement. The pretext was provided by Eric himself.

I have already mentioned above that the king wanted to marry Queen Elizabeth. Even during the negotiations with Filip Wielkoduszny regarding the marriage with Krystyna, he did not completely give up this idea.

Off the west coast of Sweden, Danish ships seized the ship that was carrying Eric's letter to Tudorówna, which called into question the sincerity of his Hessian marriage plans. The King of Denmark did not fail to convey incriminating correspondence to the father of the potential bride.

The Landgrave used this as an excuse and chased the Swedish Legation to four winds (he ordered them to leave the same day, before sunset). And this time the wedding bells didn't ring for Eric.

This article has more than one page. Please select another one below to continue reading.

Attention! You are not on the first page of the article. If you want to read from the beginning click here.

Oh Renata, it will be rich with you!

Once it was known that the threads from the previous plans, Eric's eyes turned to Lorraine. At the court of Duchess Krystyna there was a maiden named Renata. The potential mother-in-law of the Swedish ruler was well versed in the meanders of European politics, she was great at the world of courtly intrigues (she had to go to a good school in Italy, at the side of her first husband - the Duke of Milan), and she was said to be a charming person.

The Swedish-Lorraine alliance sealed with the marriage bond was to bring tangible benefits to both sides. Krystyna Lotaryńska made claims to the Danish throne, calling the Danish ruler Frederick II a usurper. The wedding of Eric and Princess Renata was supposed to be a golden mean after the Lorraine-Danish marriage negotiations broke down.

In order to convince the Swedish assembly of states, the king's representatives promised that the ruler's potential mother-in-law would relinquish claims to the disputed territories of Halland, Scania and Norway, and would issue a number of troops for Sweden at her own expense.

Erik, on the other hand, believed that marrying one of the European ruling houses would give him greater prestige on the international arena and the favor of his future wife's wealthy relatives:the emperor, king of Spain and king of France.

Krystyna Heska. She didn't look that bad in the painting ...

Renata Lotaryńska, and later Bavarian. Maybe she didn't become queen, but the people considered her a saint…

Unfortunately, it turned out as it turned out. It is known that royal marriages are a state affair and an important aspect of foreign policy. During the negotiations with Krystyna Lotaryńska, Eryk managed to win quite a lot at home.

The protracted lack of prospects for the arrival of the heir to the throne worried the assembly of the states, which ultimately gave Erik a free hand to choose a spouse both domestically and abroad (the king eventually took advantage of this).

In the meantime, however, the balance of power on the continent has changed. After the unfortunate change that took place on the imperial stool, Krystyna's goals evolved. The Duchess of Lorraine, unable to count on the help of the new emperor, began to use poor Eric as a bogeyman for the Danish king.

Conversations on the pre-nuptial agreement actually stalled and the Swedish ruler had to come to terms with losing sight of the sweet flower named Renatka.

Swedish girls have the most vitamin A

Nevertheless, Eric XIV still had a pretty good chance of finding a wife. Finally, he gave up the thought of looking for her outside his country and began to look around at home. In fact, His Majesty was a tasty morsel for all Swedish virgins.

Immediately after the states gave Erik a free hand (as I mentioned above), the most powerful subjects began to approach him, reminding him that they also had daughters.

Well… when the ruler finally decided to get married, he did it his own way… and thus the beautiful Karin became the queen of Sweden, who sold nuts at the market in her youth. However, this is material for a separate story.