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Christina, Queen of Sweden facts for kids

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Swedish queen Drottning Kristina portrait by Sébastien Bourdon stor.jpg
Portrait by Sébastien Bourdon, who exaggerated her eyes.
Queen of Sweden
Reign 16 November [O.S. 6 November] 1632
16 June [O.S. 6 June] 1654
Coronation 20 October 1650
Predecessor Gustav II Adolf
Successor Charles X Gustav
Born 18 December [O.S. 8 December] 1626
Tre Kronor Castle, Stockholm
Died 19 April 1689(1689-04-19) (aged 62)
Rome, Papal States
Burial 22 June 1689
St. Peter's Basilica, Vatican City
Full name
Christina Augusta or Christina Alexandra
House Vasa
Father Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden
Mother Maria Eleonora of Brandenburg
Religion Catholic (1652–1689)
Lutheran (1626–1652)
Signature Christina's signature

Christina (Swedish: Kristina; 18 December 1626 – 19 April 1689), a member of the House of Vasa, was Queen of Sweden from 1632 until her abdication in 1654. She succeeded her father Gustavus Adolphus upon his death at the Battle of Lützen, but began ruling the Swedish Empire when she reached the age of 18.

Christina argued for peace in the Thirty Years' War and received indemnity. The Peace of Westphalia allowed her also to establish an academy or university when and wherever she wanted. The Swedish queen is remembered as one of the most learned women of the 17th century. She was fond of books, manuscripts, paintings, and sculptures. With her interest in religion, philosophy, mathematics and alchemy, she attracted many scientists to Stockholm, wanting the city to become the "Athens of the North". She caused a scandal when she decided not to marry, and in 1654 when she abdicated her throne and converted to Catholicism.

Christina's financial extravagance brought the state to the verge of bankruptcy, and the financial difficulties caused public unrest after ten years of ruling. At the age of 28, the "Minerva of the North" relinquished the throne to her cousin and moved to Rome. Pope Alexander VII described Christina as "a queen without a realm, a Christian without faith, and a woman without shame." Notwithstanding, she played a leading part in the theatrical and musical community and protected many Baroque artists, composers, and musicians.

Being the guest of five consecutive popes, and a symbol of the Counter Reformation, she is one of the few women buried in the Vatican grotto. Her unconventional lifestyle and masculine dressing have been featured in countless novels, plays, operas, and film. In all the biographies about Christina, her gender and cultural identity play an important role.

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