Sigvard Bernadotte

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Sigvard Bernadotte
Count of Wisborg
prev. Prince of Sweden, Duke of Uppland
Born (1907-06-07)7 June 1907
Stockholm, Sweden
Died 4 February 2002(2002-02-04) (aged 94)
Stockholm, Sweden
Spouse Erica Maria Patzek
(m. 1934; div. 1943)
Sonja Christensen Robbert
(m. 1943; div. 1961)
Marianne Lindberg
(m. 1961)
Issue Count Michael Sigvard Bernadotte af Wisborg
Full name
Sigvard Oscar Fredrik Bernadotte
House Bernadotte
Father Gustaf VI Adolf of Sweden
Mother Princess Margaret of Connaught

Sigvard Oscar Fredrik Bernadotte, Count of Wisborg (7 June 1907 in Drottningholm – 4 February 2002 in Stockholm) was a Swedish industrial designer.

He was the second son of King Gustav VI Adolf of Sweden and his first wife, Margaret, Duchess of Scania, and was originally known as Prince Sigvard, Duke of Uppland, but lost his royal titles in 1934 when he married a commoner. He was also a paternal uncle of King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden and a maternal uncle of Queen Margrethe II of Denmark and Queen Anne-Marie of Greece.

From 1994 to 2002, he was the oldest living great-grandchild of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom, and having reached the age of 94, he was her longest-lived male descendant until being overtaken by his younger brother Carl Johan on 29 June 2011.


Bernadotte married three times.

He first married commoner Erica Maria Patzek (born in Wilmersdorf, 12 July 1911 - died in Wilmersdorf, 20 July 2007), daughter of Anton Patzek and Marie Anna Lala, on 8 March 1934 in London. The couple had no children and divorced on 14 October 1943.

Only 12 days later on 26 October in Copenhagen he married another commoner, Sonja Christensen Robbert (born in Copenhagen, 12 October 1909; died 21 May 2004), daughter of Robert Alexander Christensen Robbert and Ebba Elisabeth Svenson.

They had one son: Count Michael Sigvard Bernadotte af Wisborg (b. Copenhagen, 21 August 1944), married Christine Vellhöjer or Wellhöfer (b. Stuttgart, 26 April 1947), one daughter.

Bernadotte and Sonja were divorced on 6 June 1961.

A month later, on 30 July 1961 in Stockholm, he married Gullan Marianne Lindberg, an actress who had three children by the son of a Chinese minister in Stockholm, and the daughter of Thyra (née Dahlman) and Helge Lindberg. She then with became Marianne Bernadotte, Countess of Wisborg.[1]


Bernadotte was born Prince of Sweden and Duke of Upland, but having made an unequal match was disqualified from the line of succession. He was also forbidden to use his birth titles[2] and left to be called Mr. Bernadotte. His cousin Lennart Bernadotte, who two years earlier had experienced the same thing (as the first Swede in history), considered himself, and even more so Sigvard, subjected to very cruel treatment for several decades from the Royal Court of Sweden due to their marriages.[3]

On 2 July 1951, for himself, his wife and his marital descendants, Bernadotte was admitted by Grand Duchess Charlotte (head of state at the time) into the Nobility of Luxembourg with the title Count of Wisborg.[1] and in that conferral was also called Sigvard Oscar Frederik Prince Bernadotte.[4] Counts of Wisborg are considered to be part of the Swedish unintroduced nobility.[1]

On 28 May 1983 Bernadotte announced to Tidningarnas Telegrambyrå that his princely title was to be used from then on.

Over the years, based on precedent established in 1888 for his granduncle Oscar, he petitioned for restoration of a princely title in Sweden, although he did not seek reinstatement in the line of succession to the throne. King Carl XVI Gustaf never obliged, and remained estranged from his uncle.

Bernadotte went to the European Court of Human Rights in an effort to reclaim his princely title. In 2004, after his death, the ECHR declared the application inadmissible.[5]

The wording on his gravestone, in a cemetery owned by the King, does make it clear that Bernadotte was "born Prince of Sweden".[6]

Professional life[edit]

An industrial designer, Bernadotte was known for designing everything from luxurious silver objects for Georg Jensen [7] to everyday-use household items in plastic.

Among his iconic designs were the Red Clara opener; EKA Swede 38 folding knife;[8] the Margrethe bowl; the Bernadotte jug, and the Facit Private typewriter.[9]

He also designed glasses frames.[10]

He served as a technical adviser on the 1937 film The Prisoner of Zenda.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d von Rothstein, Niclas, ed. (2009). Kalender över Ointroducerad adels förening (in Swedish) (22nd ed.). Ointroducerad Adels Förening. p. 22. ISBN 9789163350382. 
  2. ^ Gunnar Bramstång in ''Tronrätt, bördstitel och hustillhörighet ISBN 91-544-2081-4 p. 54-55
  3. ^ Lennart Bernadotte in Mainau min medelpunkt ISBN 91-0-056122-3 p. 77
  4. ^ Mémorial du Grand-Duché de Luxembourg No 48, Government of Luxembourg, 13 August 1951, entry dated 18 July 1951
  5. ^ [1][dead link]
  6. ^ "Sigvard Bernadotte". Retrieved 2 February 2015. 
  7. ^ [2][dead link]
  8. ^ "Patent USD227071 - Winifred e - Google Patents". Retrieved 2014-03-02. 
  9. ^ "sassabrassa » Sigvard Bernadotte". 2013-06-16. Retrieved 2014-03-02. 
  10. ^ "Sigvard Bernadotte – det kungliga årets hetaste glasögondesigner! | Svensk Damtidning". Retrieved 2014-03-02. 

External links[edit]

Sigvard Bernadotte
Born: 7 June 1907 Died: 4 February 2002
Swedish royalty
Preceded by
Prince Gustaf
Duke of Uppland Succeeded by