November 22, 2013

0872 SWEDEN (Stockholm) - Royal Domain of Drottningholm (UNESCO WHS)

Even if the City of Stockholm is the official capital of Sweden, the King of Sweden actually lives in Ekerö Municipality, at Drottningholm, a locality situated on the island Lovön in lake Mälaren on the outskirts of Stockholm, which has now about 400 inhabitants and was planned and built in the mid 18th century for the people working at the palace. The current Swedish royal family have used Drottningholm as their primary residence since 1981.

Because the ensemble (castle, theatre, Chinese pavilion and gardens) is the best example of a royal residence built in the 18th century in Sweden and is representative of all European architecture of that period, Royal Domain of Drottningholm was designated in 1991 a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The name Drottningholm (Queen's islet) came from the original renaissance building erected by John III of Sweden in 1580 for his queen, Catherine Jagellon.

The Queen Dowager Regent Hedwig Eleonora bought the castle in 1661, but it burnt to the ground on 30 December that same year. Hedwig hired the famous Swedish architect Nicodemus Tessin the Elder to design and rebuild the castle. Sweden became a powerful country after the Peace of Westphalia, so the ruler needed an impressive residence. Until 1792, for more than a century, Drottningholm served regularly as a residence for the royal court, but for much of the 19th century, the palace was ignored and started to decay. In 1907, a major four-year restoration of the palace was begun to restore it to its former state, after which the royal court began to use it regularly again.

About the stamp, depicting Queen Silvia, I wrote here.

Drottningholm Palace - Wikipedia
Royal Domain of Drottningholm - UNESCO official website

Sender: Marius Vasilescu
Sent from Stockholm (Sweden), on 02.11.2013
Photo: Nills-Ingvar Sevensson

No comments:

Post a Comment