King Adolf Frederick of Sweden


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Louisa Ulrika of Prussia

King Adolf Frederick of Sweden

  • Born: 14 May 1710
  • Marriage: Louisa Ulrika of Prussia
  • Died: 12 Feb 1771 at age 60

  General Notes:

Adolf Frederick (Adolf Fredrik) (May 14, 1710 - February 12, 1771), was King of Sweden from 1751 until his death. He was the son of Christian August von Schleswig-Holstein-Eutin (1673-1726) and Albertina Frederica von Baden-Durlach (1682-1755).

He was elected crown prince to the heirless king Frederick I of Sweden after the bungled war against Russia, which ended losses in the Treaty of Turku 1745. He was a relative of the Russian monarch who just had won. Through his mother, he descended from king Gustav I of Sweden and from a sister of Charles X of Sweden. Under his reign the nobles divided themselves into the two factions of the Caps, or the peace-party, and the Hats, or the war-party.

On August 18, 1744, he married Louisa Ulrika of Prussia (1720 - 1782) and they had the following children:

1. (Stillborn) (1745)
2. Gustav III (1746-1792)
3. Charles XIII (1748-1818)
4. Fredrik Adolf (1750-1803)
5. Sophia Albertine (1753-1829)

Disputes between him and the political parties led to the attempt of a revolution in 1756. However, the revolution was exposed and a number of influential people were executed.

The king died of digestion problems on February 12, 1771 after consuming a meal consisting of lobster, caviar, sour cabbage, smoked herring and champagne that was topped off by his favourite dessert Hetvägg, which is a Semla served in a bowl of milk, and is thus remembered by Swedish schoolchildren as "the King who ate himself to death."

He was regarded, both during his time and in later times, as dependent on others, a weak ruler and lacking of any talents. But he was allegedly also a good husband, a caring father and a gentle master to his servants. His personal hospitality and friendliness were witnessed by many who deeply mourned him at his death.

His favourite pastime was to make snuff boxes, which he allegedly spent a great deal of time doing.

Johann Elias Ridinger etched an equestrian portrait of him when still being declared crown prince of Sweden and hereditary prince of Norway.

Adolf married Louisa Ulrika of Prussia. (Louisa Ulrika of Prussia was born in 1720 and died in 1782.)

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