19.04.

1689: The Swedish Queen who Unexpectedly Converted to Catholicism

1689: The Swedish Queen who Unexpectedly Converted to Catholicism
Photo Credit To Wikipedia Commons/ Dispute of Queen Cristina Vasa and René Descartes, 1884

Story Highlights

  • Historical event:
  • 19 April 1689
  • Queen Christina of Sweden caused a sort of scandal when she abdicated in 1654 and turned from Protestantism to Catholicism (Sweden was a predominantly Protestant country).

The former Swedish Queen Christina died in Rome on this day in 1689.

She ruled Sweden when this country was a powerful European superpower. Specifically, she ruled present-day Finland and Estonia, and parts of Latvia, Germany, and Russia.

Indeed, Christina had colonies in Africa (so-called Swedish Gold Coast in the area of Ghana) and North America (New Sweden in the area of present-day Pennsylvania, Delaware, and New Jersey). The famous French philosopher René Descartes was her guest and worked for her court.

"Christina of Sweden by Jacob Ferdinand Voet" by Jacob Ferdinand Voet - http://madamepickwickartblog.com/2010/04/love-the-storm-and-fear-the-calm/. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons - http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Christina_of_Sweden_by_Jacob_Ferdinand_Voet.jpg#/media/File:Christina_of_Sweden_by_Jacob_Ferdinand_Voet.jpg
“Christina of Sweden” by Jacob Ferdinand Voet – http://madamepickwickartblog.com/2010/04/love-the-storm-and-fear-the-calm/. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Queen Christina caused a sort of scandal when she abdicated in 1654 and turned from Protestantism to Catholicism (Sweden was a predominantly Protestant country). She moved to Rome, the papal city, where she died 35 years later, on this day in 1689.

She was very appreciated in Rome, so she was buried beneath the Basilica of St. Peter in Vatican, in the crypt where many popes were also buried. It is interesting that Christina is one of only a few women in history who were buried under the Basilica of St. Peter.

It is also interesting to note that the sarcophagus containing the body of Pope Saint John Paul II was located near the sarcophagus of Queen Christina, in the crypt below the Basilica of St. Peter. John Paul II had been beatified, and then his body was moved from the crypt to the interior of the basilica.

Facebook Comments

Related posts