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Victoria of Baden
Queen Victoria in 1910
Queen consort of Sweden
Tenure 8 September 1907 – 4 April 1930
Spouse Gustaf V of Sweden
Issue
Gustaf VI Adolf of Sweden
Prince Vilhelm, Duke of Södermanland
Prince Erik, Duke of Västmanland
Full name
Sophie Marie Viktoria
House House of Bernadotte
House of Zähringen
Father Friedrich I, Grand Duke of Baden
Mother Princess Louise of Prussia
Born 7 August 1862(1862-08-07)
Karlsruhe
Died 4 April 1930 (aged 67)
Rome, Italy

Viktoria of Baden (Sophie Marie Viktoria) (7 August 1862 – 4 April 1930) was Queen consort of Sweden as the wife of King Gustaf V of Sweden.

Contents

Birth

Princess Viktoria was born on 7 August 1862 at the castle in Karlsruhe, Baden. Her father was Grand Duke Friedrich I of Baden, the fourth child of Grand Duke Leopold I of Baden and Grand Duchess Sophie of Baden (née Princess Sofia of Sweden). Her mother was Grand Duchess Luise of Baden (née Princess Luise of Prussia), the second child of William I, German Emperor, and Augusta of Saxe-Weimar. Victoria was also great-granddaughter (by her paternal grandmother) of King Gustav IV Adolf of Sweden and Frederica of Baden.

Marriage

Princess Viktoria married in Karlsruhe on 20 September 1881 Crown Prince Gustaf of Sweden and Norway, the son of King Oscar II of Sweden and Norway and Sofia of Nassau. From then on, she used the name Victoria.

Crown Princess Victoria and Crown Prince Gustaf had three children:

Issue

Name Birth Death Notes
King Gustaf VI Adolf of Sweden 11 November 1882 15 September 1973 married 1) Princess Margaret of Connaught (1882-1920), had issue (four sons, one daughter) , married 2) Louise Mountbatten (1889-1965), had issue (a stillborn daughter)
Prince Vilhelm, Duke of Södermanland 17 June 1884 5 June 1965 married Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna of Russia (1890-1958), had issue
Prince Erik, Duke of Västmanland 20 April 1889 20 September 1918 died unmarried of the Spanish Flu, no issue

Life as a Queen

She became Queen of Sweden at her father-in-law's death on 8 September 1907. Gustaf became King Gustaf V and Princess Victoria then became Queen Victoria.

Queen Victoria had substantial political influence over her husband, who was often considered pro-German. She and her husband were brought together by their families and their marriage was reported not to have been a happy one (although is said to have been improved towards the end of their lives). They both had affairs but the marriage produced three children.

Queen Victoria suffered from very poor health (much due to mistreatment from several doctors in her youth), and often went on trips to make her health better (she suffered from bronchitis and possibly tuberculosis). As Crown Princess, these trips were very common but became much less once she became Queen Consort.

From 1892 until her death, Axel Munthe was her personal physician and recommended for health reasons that she spend winters on the Italian island of Capri. While initially hesitant, in the autumn of 1910 she travelled to Capri, arriving to an official welcome and a crowd which escorted her from the Marina Grand to the Hotel Paradise. From then on, except during the first world war and for the last two years of her life, she spent several months a year on Capri. After some time, she decided to purchase her own residence on Capri, an intimate rustic two-storey farmhouse she named Casa Caprile, which she had extensively landscaped, surrounding it with a dense park. In the 1950s, some years after her death, this property became a hotel.

Crown Princess Victoria and Crown Prince Gustaf of Sweden, 1880s

The Queen went to Munthe's residence, the Villa San Michele, most mornings in order to join Munthe for walks around the island. Munthe and the Queen also arranged evening concerts at San Michele, at which the Queen played piano. They also shared a love of animals, with the Queen frequently being seen with a leashed dog, and she was known to support Munthe's (eventually successful) efforts to purchase Mount Barbarossa for use as a bird sanctuary. Perhaps inevitably given the small local population and their close friendship, it was rumored that Munthe and the Queen were lovers, but this has not been substantiated.

Queen Victoria lost a lot of popularity among the Swedes for her often notable Pro-German attitude – particularly politically during World War I when she is said to have influenced her husband to large extents. However, she was respected and admired for her strong female personality. In later years Swedish historians have somewhat revalued Victoria in consideration of her strict Prussian upbringing, and also due to her painful chronic illnesses, which haunted her all her life. For instance, she was treated with mercury and undue heavy medications during her difficult pregnancies – possibly the cause for her chronic conditions.

She is regarded as probably the most talented of the Swedish Queens ever: she was an incredibly accomplished amateur photographer and painter. On her travels in Egypt and Italy she both photographed and painted extensively, and experimented with all kinds of photo-developing techniques, producing very high quality photographic work. She was also an excellent pianist and, for example, could play through the complete Ring of the Nibelung by Wagner without notes. In fact, she had had a phenomenal music education and in her youth she had turned the notes on court concerts for Franz Liszt. Her favourite composers were Schubert and Beethoven.

She was also devoted to various kinds of charity, both in Sweden, Germany and Italy.

She was the 855th Dame of the Royal Order of Queen Maria Luisa.

Victoria and Gustaf V of Sweden

Death

Toward the end of her life, with her health declining, Munthe recommended she no longer spend time in Capri, and she returned to Sweden for some time, building a Capri-styled villa there. She then moved to Rome.

Her final visit to Sweden was on her husband's 70th birthday in 1928, and Queen Victoria died on 4 April 1930 in her home Villa Svezia in Rome at age 67.

Genealogy

At the death of her childless brother, Grand Duke Frederick II of Baden in 1928, Victoria became the heir to her great-grandfather King Gustav IV Adolf of Sweden, who had been deposed in 1809. The unrelated House of Bernadotte had been elected to the Swedish throne in 1810, and had reigned ever since. Victoria's son, King Gustaf VI Adolf of Sweden, could therefore claim to be the direct heir to Gustav IV of the House of Holstein-Gottorp (Swedish line) and the House of Vasa as well as the Bernadotte kings of Sweden.

Ancestry

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Charles Frederick, Grand Duke of Baden
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Leopold, Grand Duke of Baden
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Luise Karoline Geyer von Geyersberg
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Frederick I, Grand Duke of Baden
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Gustav IV Adolf of Sweden
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sophie of Sweden
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Frederica of Baden
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Victoria of Baden
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Frederick William III of Prussia
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Wilhelm I of Germany
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Louise of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Louise of Prussia
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Charles Frederick, Grand Duke of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Maria Pavlovna of Russia
 
 
 
 
 
 

Styles

  • Her Grand Ducal Highness Princess Viktoria of Baden (1862–1881)
  • Her Royal Highness The Crown Princess of Sweden and Norway (1881–1905)
  • Her Royal Highness The Crown Princess of Sweden (1905–1907)
  • Her Majesty The Queen of Sweden (1907–1930)

Photographic work

References

External links

Victoria of Baden
Born: 7 August 1862 Died: 4 April 1930
Swedish royalty
Preceded by
Sophia of Nassau
Queen consort of Sweden
1907–1930
Vacant
Title next held by
Louise Mountbatten

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