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The christening of King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden

With the christening of Princess Adrienne of Sweden, the third child of Princess Madeleine and Chris O’Neill, later this morning, we are taking a look back at the christenings of her grandfather, His Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden. 

King Carl XVI Gustaf was born 30 April 1946 as the last of Prince Gustaf Adolf and Princess Sibylla’s five children at Haga Palace. Carl Gustaf has four older sisters: Princess Margaretha, Princess Birgitta, Princess Désirée and Princess Christina. He was christened into the Church of Sweden on 7 June 1946 in the Royal Chapel of Stockholm Palace by the Archbishop of Uppsala, Erling Eidem.

A baptised Prince Carl Gustaf, held by his grandfather, King Gustaf V. The Prince’s grandfather, the future Gustaf VI Adolf is sitting at the left, while the Prince’s father, Prince Gustaf Adolf, stands. Photo: The Royal Court via Kungl. Hovstaterna.

The then Prince and future King’s godparents were his paternal uncle, future King Frederick IX of Denmark; his paternal aunt, Queen Ingrid of Denmark (former Princess of Sweden); the future Queen Juliana of the Netherlands; the future King Olav V of Norway; his maternal uncle, the then Friedrich Josias, Hereditary Prince of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha; his paternal great-grandfather, King Gustaf V; his paternal grandfather, the future King Gustaf VI Adolph; his paternal step-grandmother, Queen Louise of Sweden; Countess Maria Bernadotte of Wisborg; and Count Folke Bernadotte.

The little Prince was granted the title of Duke of Jämtland, and his full name was Carl Gustaf Folke Hubertus.

The future King is carried by his mother, accompanied by his father and four older sisters. Photo: Swedish Royal Court / Kungl. Hovstaterna.

Prince Carl Gustaf with his parents in 1946. This was one of the very first official images of Sweden’s future monarch. Photo / The Royal Court, Sweden

Like many of his family members both before and after, His Majesty wore the Swedish Royal Family’s antique christening gown; it was first worn in 1906 by the future King Gustaf VI Adolf. Their names and the dates of their christenings were embroidered on the gown after the ceremonies. Like many a christening dress, it is made of light, crisp cotton batiste and covered in Valenciennes, a popular type of bobbin lace. It has small cap sleeves, trimmed with more lace. The gown was first used in 1906 at the christening of King Carl XVI Gustaf’s grandfather, Prince Gustaf Adolf, who was baptised on June 15th, 1906 in the White Sea Room at the Royal Palace in Stockholm.

About author

Senior Europe Correspondent Oskar Aanmoen has a master in military and political history of the Nordic countries. He has written five books on historical subjects and more than 700 articles for Royal Central. He has also interview both Serbian and Norwegian royals. Aanmoen is based in Oslo, Norway.