Monday, 25 May 2015

Episode 25: Karl XI - war and absolutism

Karl XI focused on the internal affairs in Sweden. A war with Denmark had to be handled 1675-1679, a war that initially was pretty devastating to Sweden and showed that the army and the navy was in need of repair. Karl XI thus needed resources, and found this by forcing the reduction of estates and revenues granted to the nobility earlier in the 17th century. The king ruled without the council and soon also without need of parliament - Sweden became and absolute monarchy. The old support system for the army was renovated and expanded. There was now a standing army (and navy) and no more need for conscription. A new navy base in Karlskrona was founded.

 The extanded family of Karl XI. From the left his mother Hedvig Eleonora, Karl XI, future Karl XII, queen Ulrika Eleonora (sister of the Danish king), Fredrik IV of Holstein-Gottorp (the nephew of Hedvig Eleonora), Amalia of Holsteing- Gottorp (Fredrik's mother and the sister-in-law of Hedvig Eleonora), Hedvig Sofia (daughter of Karl XI and wife of Fredrik). The small child in Ulrika Eleonoras arms is Ulrika Eleonora the younger - also a daughter of Karl XI and Ulrika Eleonora. Unfortunately I do not know the names of the spaniel and the italian greyhound.