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King of Sweden unveils statue of Karl XIV Johan

Late afternoon yesterday, King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden unveiled the rider statue of King Carl XIV Johan (the first Bernadotte King of Sweden) in its new location on the Slottsbacken “Castle Slope” (a road in central Stockholm that stretches from the Royal Palace along the eastern waterfront). The statue formerly resided at Slussen from November 1854, but it was moved to right outside the Royal Palace on Slottsbacken in celebration of 200 years of the Bernadotte dynasty ruling Sweden.

He was joined on the snowy evening by Queen Silvia, Crown Princess Victoria, Prince Daniel, Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia.

With its relocation, the Bengt Erland Fogelberg sculpture received a new granite basin and added inscriptions to celebrate the 200th anniversary.

The statue in its new home outside the Royal Cathedral and Royal Palace. Photo: Henrik Garlöv / Kungl. Royal Court

During the unveiling ceremony, conductor Pelle Olofsson directed Livgardets Dragonmusikkår in music that was played during the statue’s initial reveal in 1854.

King Carl XVI Gustaf said during the ceremony that it was “a great pleasure” to reveal the statue’s new home after the Swedish Royal Family has celebrated their ancestor and the Bernadotte dynasty’s 200th anniversary throughout 2018.

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“After 164 years at Slussen, Karl Johan is now back at the palace where he lived and worked.

He was basically military, educated in war. However, he did his most important activities in peacetime: as crown prince and king, he was in the process of building up Sweden, endangered by war. That work also laid the foundation for much of the prosperity that characterises our country today,” His Majesty remarked.

Alluding to the blistery, snowy weather in Stockholm last evening, the King concluded his speech stating, “Now, Karl Johan’s statue has been moved from Slussen to Slottsbacken. And thus, the Palace is still guarded by a regent in every weather. I feel so good!”

Photo: Henrik Garlöv / Kungl. Royal Court

The King also invited the public to the Royal Palace with free entry for the exhibition hall Bernadottevåningen.

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