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"a queen without a realm, a Christian without faith, and a woman without shame"

On 19 April 1689, Christina of Sweden died at the Palazzo Corsini in Rome. She was the last ruler of Sweden of the House of Vasa and considered one of the most learned woman of the 17th century. It gained her the nickname “the Minerva of the North”, although her extravagance brought Sweden on the verge of bankruptcy. At the age of 28 the gave up the throne and moved to Rome, where she became the symbol of the counterreformation. Although Pope Alexander VII described her as “a queen without a realm, a Christian without faith, and a woman without shame”, she is one of the very few woman buried in the Vatican Grotto.

19 April in history

At The Online Portrait Gallery, we want to give history a face. Are you curious to find out more about this day in history? Please find some highlights below.