House of Bernadotte
|House of Bernadotte|
|Current head||Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden|
Norway:1905: dissolution of the union between Sweden and Norway
The House of Bernadotte, the current royal house of Sweden, has reigned since 1818. Between 1818 and 1905, it was also the royal house of Norway. Its founder, Charles XIV John of Sweden, was adopted by Charles XIII of Sweden, who belonged to the House of Holstein-Gottorp which was becoming extinct.
Following the Finnish War in 1809, Sweden lost possession of Finland, which had constituted the eastern half of the Swedish realm for centuries. Resentment towards King Gustav IV Adolf precipitated a coup d'état. Gustav Adolf was deposed and his uncle Charles XIII was elected King in his place. Because Charles XIII was childless, in 1810 the Riksdag of the Estates, the Swedish parliament, elected Prince Christian August of Augustenborg, from Denmark, as heir to the throne. He died later that same year.
At this time, Emperor Napoleon I of France controlled much of continental Europe, and some of his client kingdoms were headed by his brothers. The Riksdag decided to choose a king whom Napoleon would approve. On 21 August 1810, the Riksdag elected Jean-Baptiste Bernadotte, a Marshal of France, as heir presumptive to the Swedish throne.
Bernadotte, born in the town of Pau, in the province of Béarn, France, had risen to the rank of general during the French Revolution. In 1798 he married Désirée Clary, whose sister was married to Joseph, Napoleon's elder brother. In 1804 Napoleon promoted Bernadotte to a Marshal of France. Napoleon also granted him the title 'Prince of Pontecorvo'; Pontecorvo is a town in central Italy.
As the Crown Prince of Sweden he assumed the name Karl Johan (Charles John) and acted as regent for the remainder of Charles XIII's reign. In 1813, he broke with Napoleon and Sweden joined the anti-Napoleon alliance. He secured a forced personal union between Sweden and Norway in the 1814 campaign against Norway. Bernadotte reigned as King Charles XIV of Sweden and Carl III Johan of Norway from 5 February 1818 until his death on 8 March 1844.
The House of Bernadotte reigned in both countries until the dissolution of the union between Norway and Sweden in 1905. Prince Carl of Denmark was then elected as King Haakon VII of Norway. Carl was a grandson of King Charles XV of Sweden, and a great-great-grandson of Charles XIV.
The coat of arms of the House of Bernadotte combines the coat of arms of the House of Vasa (heraldic right) and the coat of arms of Bernadotte as the Prince of Pontecorvo (heraldic left). It is visible as an inescutcheon in the Greater Coat of Arms of the Realm.
Kings of Sweden
- 1818–1844: Charles XIV John (Karl XIV Johan)
- 1844–1859: Oscar I
- 1859–1872: Charles XV (Karl XV)
- 1872–1907: Oscar II
- 1907–1950: Gustaf V
- 1950–1973: Gustaf VI Adolf
- 1973–present: Carl XVI Gustaf
Kings of Norway
- Guadeloupe Fund
- Bernadotte af Wisborg
- Swedish Act of Succession
- Line of succession to the Swedish throne
- Jean-Marc Olivier, "Bernadotte Revisited, or The Complexity of a Long Reign (1810–1844)", in Nordic Historical Review, number 2, October 2006, pp. 127–137.
- The Bernadotte dynasty family tree on Kindo
- The Bernadottes in Black and White, photos from an exhibition at the Nationalmuseum, Stockholm.
House of Bernadotte
House of Holstein-Gottorp
|Ruling House of the Kingdom of Sweden
|Ruling House of the Kingdom of Norway
House of Oldenburg (Glücksburg branch)