Karl XIII, King of Sweden

King Karl XIII

Karl was king of Sweden from 1809 to 1818, and from 1814 also King of Norway. In 1774, he married his cousin Hedvig Elisabet Charlotta. Both of their children died in infancy.

On the death of Gustav III in 1792, Karl became the guardian of Gustav IV Adolf, who was still a minor. When he was deposed in 1809, Karl was appointed regent. After approving the Constitution Act of 1809, he was named king.

Since Karl XIII missing heirs, the Riksdag appointed a new crown prince: Kristian August of Augustenburg. He was adopted by Karl, but died suddenly in May 1810. Three months later, a Frenchman – Jean Baptiste Bernadotte – was elected as the new crown prince by the Riksdag.

Karl XIII portrayed as Duke of Södermanland. Painted in 1799 by the Austrian painter Johann Baptist Lampi the Elder (1751–1830). The painting hangs in the Bernadotte Gallery at the Royal Palace. Photo: Alexis Daflos/Royalpalaces.se

karl xiii

Born 26 September 1748, died 5 February 1818
1809–1818, Protector of the Realm 1809
1809–1814, King of Sweden
1814–1818, King of Sweden and Norway

royal motto

The welfare of the people is my highest law


1809 Stockholm Cathedral


1818 Riddarholmen Church


Gustav IV Adolf


Karl XIV Johan


Hedvig Elisabet Charlotta of Holstein-Gottorp


Stillborn daughter (1797)
Karl Adolf (1798–1798)
Adopted sons:
Kristian August (1768–1810), new name Karl August
Jean Baptiste Bernadotte (1763–1844), new name namn Karl (XIV) Johan, King of Sweden 1818–1844

Holstein - Gottorp