Oscar II of Sweden

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Oscar II
King of Sweden
Reign 18 September 1872 – 8 December 1907
Coronation 12 May 1873
Predecessor Charles XV
Successor Gustaf V
King of Norway
Reign 18 September 1872 – 7 June 1905
Coronation 18 July 1873
Predecessor Charles IV
Successor Haakon VII
Spouse Sofia of Nassau
Issue
Gustaf V of Sweden
Prince Oscar, Duke of Gotland
Prince Carl, Duke of Västergötland
Prince Eugén, Duke of Närke
Full name
Oscar Fredrik
House House of Bernadotte
Father Oscar I of Sweden
Mother Josephine of Leuchtenberg
Born 21 January 1829(1829-01-21)
Stockholm Palace, Stockholm
Died 8 December 1907(1907-12-08) (aged 78)
Stockholm Palace, Stockholm
Burial Riddarholmskyrkan, Stockholm
Religion Lutheranism

Oscar II (21 January 1829 – 8 December 1907), baptised Oscar Fredrik,[1] was King of Sweden from 1872 until his death and King of Norway from 1872 until 1905. The third son of King Oscar I of Sweden and Josephine of Leuchtenberg, he was a descendant of Gustav I of Sweden through his mother.

Early life[change | edit source]

When he was born on January 21, 1829 in Stockholm, Oscar Fredrik was created Duke of Östergötland. He entered the navy at the age of eleven, and was appointed junior lieutenant in July 1845. Later he studied at Uppsala University, where he distinguished himself in mathematics. On 13 December 1848, he was made an honorary member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.

From 1859, when his father died, he was first in line to the Swedish throne after his oldest brother King Charles, who then had no male heirs (his son had died in infancy in 1854). His middle brother Gustaf had died in 1852.

King of Sweden and Norway[change | edit source]

A portrait of Oscar in 1898

He succeeded his brother Charles XV and IV on 18 September 1872, and was crowned as king of Norway in the Nidaros Cathedral in Trondheim on 18 July 1873. At the accession he adopted as his motto Brödrafolkens väl / Broderfolkenes Vel ("The Welfare of the Brother Peoples"). While the King and the Royal Court resided mostly in Sweden, Oscar made the effort of learning to be fluent in Norwegian and from the very beginning he realized the essential difficulties in the maintenance of the union between the two countries.

Later life[change | edit source]

The political events which led up to the peaceful dissolution of the union between Norway and Sweden in 1905 could hardly have been attained but for the tact and patience of the king himself. He was dethroned on 7 June 1905 by the Norwegian Parliament and renounced the Norwegian throne on 26 October.

Personal life[change | edit source]

On 6 June 1857 he married in Wiesbaden-Biebrich, Germany, Princess Sophia Wilhelmina, youngest daughter of Duke William of Nassau.

Death[change | edit source]

His health declined, indeed, to permit any prince of his house to become king of Norway, but better relations between the two countries were restored before his death in Stockholm on 8 December 1907 from unknown causes.

References[change | edit source]

  1. Stockholm City Archives, archive of the Court parish, birth and baptism records, volume C I:5

Other websites[change | edit source]

Media related to Oscar II of Sweden at Wikimedia Commons