Gustavus Adolphus Day

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Gustavus Adolphus Day
Gustav Adolfsbakelse.jpg
Gustavus Adolphus pastry, a pastry sold in the week of Gustavus Adolphus Day
Observed by Sweden, Finland
Significance Anniversary of the death of King Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden at the Battle of Lützen (1632)
Date November 6
Next time 6 November 2015 (2015-11-06)
Frequency annual
Related to Finnish Swedish Heritage Day

Gustavus Adolphus Day (Swedish: Gustav Adolfsdagen) is celebrated in Sweden and some other countries on November 6 in memory of King Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden, who was killed on that date (old style) in 1632 at the Battle of Lützen in the Thirty Years' War.[1][2] The day is named for the king[3] and is a general flag day in Sweden[3][4] and in Finland.[5] The day was formerly celebrated with torchlight processions and patriotic speeches.[3] Today what remains is mainly the consumption of the Gustavus Adolphus pastry (Gustav Adolf-bakelse in Swedish) on this day, with a chocolate or marzipan relief of that king on top.[3]

According to the Gregorian calendar, the king died on 16 November, but the Julian calendar ("old style") was still used in Protestant Sweden at the time and that date - 6 November - is still used now.

Window of a konditorei in central Stockholm decorated with the king's portrait and exhibiting Gustavus Adolphus pastries on Gustavus Adolphus Day 2012.

Gustavus Adolphus Day has been celebrated since the early 19th century and got popular especially after the 200th anniversary celebration of the king's death in 1832.[1] In Sweden, the day is especially observed in Gothenburg, which was founded by the king,[1][3] but also in cities with old educational traditions[1] such as Uppsala, where he donated considerable funding to the university, and in cities where the military traditionally has been based.[1] It is not generally celebrated in Skåne[citation needed], the southernmost part of Sweden, since Skåne was part of Denmark at the time and Gustavus Adolphus waged war on Denmark.

Sjättenovembervägen ("Sixth November Road"), a part of the old Göta highway in the Stockholm borough of Älvsjö, is named for this day.

The day is celebrated in Finland since 1908 by the Swedish speakers as Svenska dagen,[1] Finnish Swedish Heritage Day. In Estonia, which like Finland was a part of Sweden during the reign of Gustavus Adolphus, the day is known as Gustav Adolfi päev. In all three countries, 6 November is the name day for Gustav Adolf, Gustavus Adolphus' name in Swedish.[6] or Kustaa Aadolf, the name in Finnish.[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Nationalencyklopedin, Gustav Adolfsdagen
  2. ^ Nationalencyklopedin, Gustav II Adolf
  3. ^ a b c d e "Gustav Adolfs-bakelsens historia" (in Swedish). Danska wienerbageriet. Retrieved 2014-02-05. 
  4. ^ "Flag days - Sweden". Flags of the World. Retrieved 20 February 2014. 
  5. ^ "Flying the Flag". Finnish Ministry of the Interior. Retrieved 20 February 2014. 
  6. ^ "Swedish namedays in Finland". Vardsvenska. Retrieved 20 February 2014. 
  7. ^ "Finnish namedays". Vardsvenska. Retrieved 20 February 2014.