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Mamsell (From the French Mademoiselle) was a historical Swedish honorific used for unmarried women from about the mid 18th-century until 1866. The title was primarily used for middle class women and women in the cities.


The first title used for unmarried women in Sweden was jungfru. In the 18th century, Mamsell became common; although unmarried noblewomen were called "Fröken" (Miss). Similarly, the title "Fru" (Mrs) was used only for married noblewomen, and married middle-class women were called "Madam" (from French: Madame). After the parliamentary reform which abolished the Riksdag of the Estates in 1866, the title "Fröken" was allowed for all unmarried women, and the title Mamsell - as well as the married equivalent Madam - ceased to be used.

The reform was mentioned in the 1866/67 New Year's show at the Royal Dramatic Theatre in Stockholm in the satirical song (which rhymes in Swedish):

Away with the old ghosts mamsell'es!
Now every girl can be a Miss,
Unless she prefers to be a Mrs
In 1867

At the Royal Dramatic Theatre, however, the reform was not introduced until after director Edholm was replaced in 1881.


  • Georg Nordensvan: Svensk teater och svenska skådespelare från gustav III till våra dagar. andra boken 1842-1918 (1918)
  • Johan Flodmark: Stenborgska skådebanorna
  • Trygve Byström: Svenska komedien 1737-1754