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  #1  
Old 09-05-2007, 05:34 PM
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Unequal Marriages

I understand that up to the time the current King ascended to the Throne, if a Swedish Prince of the blood royal married unequally, then he/she would lose the right to succession. Many in fact of the princes married countesses and commoners and had to resign their rank and title and become counts Wisborg. Is this principle still in effect? And if so, is it written in the Constitution of Sweden or is it a House Rule?

I also understand that a monarch, however, once he/she had ascended to the throne, he/she had the right to marry unequally without losing the throne as was the case with current King.
If this is still the case, does that mean that if CP Vicoria married unequally before she became queen, she would have to resign her rights in favor of her brother??
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Old 09-05-2007, 08:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Philippe Egalite' View Post
I understand that up to the time the current King ascended to the Throne, if a Swedish Prince of the blood royal married unequally, then he/she would lose the right to succession. Many in fact of the princes married countesses and commoners and had to resign their rank and title and become counts Wisborg. Is this principle still in effect? And if so, is it written in the Constitution of Sweden or is it a House Rule?

I also understand that a monarch, however, once he/she had ascended to the throne, he/she had the right to marry unequally without losing the throne as was the case with current King.
If this is still the case, does that mean that if CP Vicoria married unequally before she became queen, she would have to resign her rights in favor of her brother??
I don't think this applies anymore because Queen Silvia was a commoner. The King had to wait until his grandfather died and he ascended the throne before he could marry her, but he did marry her. Neither crown prince in Denmark or Norway married women with royal backgrounds either.
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Old 09-06-2007, 02:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Philippe Egalite' View Post
I understand that up to the time the current King ascended to the Throne, if a Swedish Prince of the blood royal married unequally, then he/she would lose the right to succession. Many in fact of the princes married countesses and commoners and had to resign their rank and title and become counts Wisborg. Is this principle still in effect? And if so, is it written in the Constitution of Sweden or is it a House Rule?

I also understand that a monarch, however, once he/she had ascended to the throne, he/she had the right to marry unequally without losing the throne as was the case with current King.
If this is still the case, does that mean that if CP Vicoria married unequally before she became queen, she would have to resign her rights in favor of her brother??
I think there's a matter of getting the king's permission, as there is in several other royal houses, for a marriage. The king's uncle, Prince Bertil did not lose his place in the succession or his title when he married a commoner, now Princess Lilian, with the king's permission.
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Old 09-06-2007, 04:05 AM
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I think it used to be that way (like its only princess Birgitta thats still are a part of the royal family as she married a prince and her sisters are not) but now I dont think for example princess Madeleine would loose her title if she married Jonas Bergström. Whats unequal about it is the fact that if Emma marries Carl Philip she will probably be a princess while Jonas "only" will be a duke or something like that. Many of the swedish magazines has written about this many times :)
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Old 09-06-2007, 04:35 AM
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Originally Posted by qisabella View Post
I don't think this applies anymore because Queen Silvia was a commoner. The King had to wait until his grandfather died and he ascended the throne before he could marry her, but he did marry her. Neither crown prince in Denmark or Norway married women with royal backgrounds either.
What you are saying has already been asserted. That is, a King, once he had ascended to the Throne had the right to marry whomever he wanted. So this was the case with the current King, while those of his sisters who married unequally lost their rank and right to the throne.
I am not asking about Denmark and Norway. Each country has its own constitution and each royal house its own rules.
So, my question is still unanswered. Is the precedent of requiring a Swedish prince/princess to marry equally in order to retain rank and style still in effect?
And, was this "requirement" a constitutional scriptum or a rule of the Bernadotte dynasty?

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Originally Posted by norwegianne View Post
I think there's a matter of getting the king's permission, as there is in several other royal houses, for a marriage. The king's uncle, Prince Bertil did not lose his place in the succession or his title when he married a commoner, now Princess Lilian, with the king's permission.
But Prince Bertil, respectful of the Rule and, while there had remained only two people available for succession to the throne (ie the current king before he had fathered children and himself), he had waited for ever until he married the now princess Lilian.
In result, the King rewarded him for his loyalty to the Throne and this is why HRH Princess Lilian maintains such a prominent position and enjoys such respect. And, then again, I wonder whether the permission given to Prince Bertil was an exception for him or reflected a change in the Rule altogether?

In any case, I understand from your account that this requirement was not a constitutional one but a Bernadotte house rule, or am I wrong?

Finally, I am fully aware that all royal houses require all dynasts to get the monarch permission, as a formality, before their marriage if they are to maintain their dynastic rights. But there is a difference between permission as a formality and prohibition of the monarch (by a house rule or the constitution) to give permission in view of an unequal marriage.
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Old 09-06-2007, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Philippe Egalite' View Post
But Prince Bertil, respectful of the Rule and, while there had remained only two people available for succession to the throne (ie the current king before he had fathered children and himself), he had waited for ever until he married the now princess Lilian.
In result, the King rewarded him for his loyalty to the Throne and this is why HRH Princess Lilian maintains such a prominent position and enjoys such respect. And, then again, I wonder whether the permission given to Prince Bertil was an exception for him or reflected a change in the Rule altogether?

In any case, I understand from your account that this requirement was not a constitutional one but a Bernadotte house rule, or am I wrong?
I did some research on the matter of having the king's permission in Sweden. First I only found a Swedish version of the Act of Succession, but then I found this version that had been translated into English.

The royal consent is actually a constitutional requirement, or rather, the King has to apply to the government for the permission.

Article four in the Swedish Act of succession (one part of the constitution), says that
Quote:
Art. 5. A prince or princess of the Royal House may not marry unless the Government has given its consent thereto upon an application from The King. Should a prince or princess marry without such consent, that prince or princess forfeits the right of succession for himself, his children and their descendants.
Riksdagen - The Act of Succession

Bertil was an exception in that he was still in line to the throne despite the article 1, which states that all in line to the throne are supposed to be descendants of King Carl Gustav. I would imagine that this was his reward for waiting.

Articles translated by GrandDuchess in this thread: http://www.theroyalforums.com/forums...amily-251.html also mention that it was the King's displeasure with the princes marrying commoners that led him to take away their princely titles, (and most likely not apply for consent to their marriages.) I'm a bit unclear as to whether the removal of the princely titles was something done because of the lack of formal consent or as the head of house, though.

I noticed that the Swedish version of the text was an amendment of an older version from 1937 (SFS 1937:40), and tried to find it as it would have been this text that would have counted in the previous cases of removing titles. Given the date of the amendment, it looks like the only thing that might have been added is the phrase princess in accordance with women also being allowed on the throne, but that is guesswork. If anyone know where I could find an older version of this law, or know what it says, it would be nice to have it confirmed.
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Old 09-07-2007, 06:24 PM
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Originally Posted by norwegianne View Post
I did some research on the matter of having the king's permission in Sweden. First I only found a Swedish version of the Act of Succession, but then I found this version that had been translated into English.

The royal consent is actually a constitutional requirement, or rather, the King has to apply to the government for the permission.

Article four in the Swedish Act of succession (one part of the constitution), says that
Riksdagen - The Act of Succession

Bertil was an exception in that he was still in line to the throne despite the article 1, which states that all in line to the throne are supposed to be descendants of King Carl Gustav. I would imagine that this was his reward for waiting.

Articles translated by GrandDuchess in this thread: http://www.theroyalforums.com/forums...amily-251.html also mention that it was the King's displeasure with the princes marrying commoners that led him to take away their princely titles, (and most likely not apply for consent to their marriages.) I'm a bit unclear as to whether the removal of the princely titles was something done because of the lack of formal consent or as the head of house, though.

I noticed that the Swedish version of the text was an amendment of an older version from 1937 (SFS 1937:40), and tried to find it as it would have been this text that would have counted in the previous cases of removing titles. Given the date of the amendment, it looks like the only thing that might have been added is the phrase princess in accordance with women also being allowed on the throne, but that is guesswork. If anyone know where I could find an older version of this law, or know what it says, it would be nice to have it confirmed.
First of all, my gratitude for your most thorough account. To recap and I'm going to think out loud [and please return and correct me]:
The requirement of an "equal" bride prior to approval of marriage used to be a royal one owing to a Royal House tradition and precedent and not a constitutional scriptum.
I also understand that the monarch still retains the right to approve or disapprove but after his own marriage as well as that of his uncle Bertil to commoners the royal requirement of an equal bride or groom has been uplifted. Even so, the monarch must still (according to the latest Succession Act) submit a petition for the government for approval of any forthcoming marriage of personages that have rights of succession.
Thus, the CP as well as prince Carl and princess Madeleine are free to marry commoners but their marriage is subject to approval by both the monarch and the government. Correct?
King Carl XVI Gustaf became King in 1973 and at that point he could marry even a commoner based on the old royal rule [allowing a King to marry a commoner but not another dynast to do so]. In June 1976 he married, as was his prerrogative, Miss Sommerlath, a commoner. Presumably, the King adopted immediately a "new rule", thereby allowing the Duke of Halland, Prince Bertil to also marry a commoner, Miss Lilian Davies, in December of the same year and, remain both a Prince and the heir presumptive until the birth of prince Carl, in 1979.
I guess King carl XVI Gustaf had to change the rule
a) because it would have been hypocritical of him to marry a commoner and not allow other royals to do so,
b) by virtue of necessity, because the Duke of Halland was still the only person in the line of succession until the birth of prince Carl, and
c) as a reward because prince Bertil had been so loyal to throne for decades and lived discretely with Miss Davies (now HRH the Duchess of Halland) out of wedlock.

I was always suspicious of the equal marriage old rule being a royal house tenet and not a constitutional one based on the fact that the current King's grandfather, Gustaf VI Adolf, married, as Crown Prince of Sweden, Lady Louise Mountbatten who, although born a princess (Battenberg) she had been reduced to Lady Mountbatten, the daughter of a marquess when her family adopted British citizenship. So, if the rule was a constitutional scriptum or written house rule, that marriage would have not been possible or declared morganatic and it wasn't.
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  #8  
Old 09-07-2007, 07:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Philippe Egalite' View Post
First of all, my gratitude for your most thorough account. To recap and I'm going to think out loud [and please return and correct me]:
The requirement of an "equal" bride prior to approval of marriage used to be a royal one owing to a Royal House tradition and precedent and not a constitutional scriptum.
As far as I can gather from the text I've seen, yes.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philippe Egalite' View Post
I also understand that the monarch still retains the right to approve or disapprove but after his own marriage as well as that of his uncle Bertil to commoners the royal requirement of an equal bride or groom has been uplifted. Even so, the monarch must still (according to the latest Succession Act) submit a petition for the government for approval of any forthcoming marriage of personages that have rights of succession.
Thus, the CP as well as prince Carl and princess Madeleine are free to marry commoners but their marriage is subject to approval by both the monarch and the government. Correct?
I would say so, yes. But I'm not an expert in Swedish legislation. But as far as I understand that particular article, if Victoria, Carl Philip or Madeleine were to find someone that either the king felt was unsuitable, or the government found unsuitable - for whatever reason, they would lose their place in the line of succession.
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Old 09-07-2007, 08:08 PM
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What is really interesting is that the Bernadotte Dynasty, is decended from plain, ordinary French commoners. The Vasa's adopted Jean Baptiste Bernadotte, who was born in Pau, in France, his father just a commoner. He rose to be a Marshall under Napoleon, whom he detested, and then became Prince of Ponte Corvo, via Napoleon and his conquests. Desiree Clary Bernadotte, was the daughter of a French silk merchant. Hardly one of "esteem". She was Napoleon's first fiancee. Napoleon was the godfather to their son Oscar, who became Oscar I. So, all of this nonsense seems just that. They should be the most democratic group of folks. Obviously, not.
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Old 09-07-2007, 09:49 PM
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What is really interesting is that the Bernadotte Dynasty, is decended from plain, ordinary French commoners. The Vasa's adopted Jean Baptiste Bernadotte, who was born in Pau, in France, his father just a commoner. He rose to be a Marshall under Napoleon, whom he detested, and then became Prince of Ponte Corvo, via Napoleon and his conquests. Desiree Clary Bernadotte, was the daughter of a French silk merchant. Hardly one of "esteem". She was Napoleon's first fiancee. Napoleon was the godfather to their son Oscar, who became Oscar I. So, all of this nonsense seems just that. They should be the most democratic group of folks. Obviously, not.
Until the second half of the 20th century, Countess, this was the case with royal houses all over Europe. As you know unequal marriages used to be labeled morganatic. Royal men who would marry even princesses but from a minor princely family were forced to resign their rights of succession, lose their rank, title or style etc etc. If I am not mistaken,the first royal family to break this rule was the British. But even after the pattern of royal personages marrying commoners became a habit, many such marriages raised eyebrows and, interestingly enough, it was mainly and mostly the populus that resented and disapproved of such unions!!! For example, the Press at the time was very critical of the marriage of Princess Margaret of GB to a photographer [Anthony Armstrong Jones] and European Royalty was forced to snub the wedding by not attending en masse.
But you must see the whole picture. Back then, there was some aura about royal personages, some mystique. Royalty had to marry royalty to maintain the "blue blood" running in their veins etc etc. The worse was that because they were marrying close relatives many recessive genes surfaced and there were a lot of cases of physically defective or mentally retarded children etc etc. So, in attempting to maintain the "purity" of royal genetic material, the in-breeding had often a devastating effect.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Philippe Egalite' View Post
The requirement of an "equal" bride prior to approval of marriage used to be a royal one owing to a Royal House tradition and precedent and not a constitutional scriptum.
Evidently this conclusion of mine was incorrect. It was not a Swedish Royal House rule but a constitutional scriptum which was providing that a dynast could not marry a private man's daughter. In the 1930's the constitution was amended allowing a dynast to marry a foreign private man's daughter but still disallowing a dynast to marry a Swedish private man's daughter.
The restriction has been removed from the newest constitution. In addition the salic law has been uplifted [that is, females can accede to the Throne] and the succession is now strictly determined by prmogeniture. Thus, Crown Princess Victoria, Prince Carl and Princess Madeleine may marry private men (Swedish or not), or a private man's daughter (Swedish or not) in the case of Prince Carl ,without losing their constitutional rights, rank, title or style.
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Old 09-22-2007, 08:37 PM
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Are you sure parliament made it possible in the 30-ties for a Swedish Royal to marry a foreign private mans daughter? Lilian was a private mans daughter and foreign, so under that rule Bertil and she could have married in the 40-ties instead of the 70-ties.

I believe there was some trouble in Louise Mountbatten and Gustaf VI´s marriage as she could not be a private mans daughter and they had to find a way to make Louis Battenberg not a private man . Don´t remember how they worked things out in the end though.
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Old 09-23-2007, 08:23 AM
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Philippe Egalite' is correct, after some PM contact with him a while ago I've answered his questions in a blog post on my blog. You can find the answer here, I'll post it here also so that everyone can see it.
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Old 09-23-2007, 08:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Marengo View Post
Are you sure parliament made it possible in the 30-ties for a Swedish Royal to marry a foreign private mans daughter? Lilian was a private mans daughter and foreign, so under that rule Bertil and she could have married in the 40-ties instead of the 70-ties.

I believe there was some trouble in Louise Mountbatten and Gustaf VI´s marriage as she could not be a private mans daughter and they had to find a way to make Louis Battenberg not a private man . Don´t remember how they worked things out in the end though.
First of all, I would like to refer you to blog Sofia's Royal Sweden where the author gives an authoritative answer to this question.


Evidently, until 1937 the Act of Succession stated:

"a Prince or Princess of the Royal House may not marry with less than the Government’s, on the suggestion of the King’s, approval. Should this happen still, he or she have forfeited their hereditary right for themselves, children and descendants. The same goes for if he, with or without such consent, takes a private man's daughter to his bride."
In 1937, the last sentence was changed to "a Swedish private man's daughter". To your question about Lady Louise Mountbatten [initially a princess of Battenberg], it appears that in the papers signed between Great Britain and Sweden prior to her marriage on November 3, 1923, it was stated that she was a member of the British Royal Family and this circumvented the obstacle.


With respect to Prince Bertil's case: Prince Bertil, who met the then Ms. Davies around 1943-44, could have married her, if he were not that close to the Throne with a good likelihood of becoming Regent one day. This was because, in 1947, when his eldest brother Gustaf Adolf died leaving a less than one-year-old son (now King Carl XVI Gustav), the situation in the Royal House was as follows:

The King, Gustav V, was 89,
The Heir to the Throne (Bertil's father), later Gustav VI Adolf, was 65 (!), and
All other dynasts had given up their places in the succession (owing to unacceptable marriages).

Therefore, should King Gustav V and his father Gustav VI Adolf have died before the boy's coming of age , Prince Bertil would have become Regent.
Thus, although there was no restriction from the Constitution per se anymore, it was decided that Prince Bertil would not marry Lilian, but I am not sure whether this was the decision of the aging King, Bertil's father or Bertil's own.
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Old 10-01-2007, 07:10 PM
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There were five Swedish princes, who married non-royals and lost their place in the royal family: Prince Oscar (Gustav V:s brother), Prince Carl (Gustav V:s nephew), Prince Sigvard (Gustav VI Adolf's son), Prince Carl Johan (Gustav VI Adolf's son) and Prince Lennart (Gustav VI Adolf's nephew). None of these princes were heirs appearant though, so there wasn't such a crisis.

In the 1920s, when Crown Prince Gustav Adolf (the future King Gustav VI Adolf) wanted to marry Louise Mountbatten, they made some research about her royal lines. Was she a German princess or "only" a Brittish aristocrat? And three things finally made it possible for her to become crown princess and later queen of Sweden.
1: Many of her relatives were royals. Her aunt Alexandra had been empress of Russia, her cousin Ena was queen of Spain, and there was also a king of Bulgaria closely enough in the family tree.
2: The Brittish king was married to Queen Mary, who had been born a princess of Teck, and Teck was no bigger a principality than Battenberg, and what was good enough for the UK would surely be good enough for Sweden.
3: The Brittish royal family somehow actually officially approved of the marriage, which meant that Louise had to be part of that royal family.
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Old 10-08-2007, 11:28 AM
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In the 1920s, when Crown Prince Gustav Adolf (the future King Gustav VI Adolf) wanted to marry Louise Mountbatten, they made some research about her royal lines. Was she a German princess or "only" a Brittish aristocrat? And three things finally made it possible for her to become crown princess and later queen of Sweden.
1: Many of her relatives were royals. Her aunt Alexandra had been empress of Russia, her cousin Ena was queen of Spain, and there was also a king of Bulgaria closely enough in the family tree.
2: The Brittish king was married to Queen Mary, who had been born a princess of Teck, and Teck was no bigger a principality than Battenberg, and what was good enough for the UK would surely be good enough for Sweden.
3: The Brittish royal family somehow actually officially approved of the marriage, which meant that Louise had to be part of that royal family.
Excellent remarks. In fact both Teck and Battenberg were minor, irrelevant, non-sovereign [that is legally meaningless], courtesy titles, the former ducal, the latter princely, within the Kingdom of Wurttenberg and the Grand Duchy of Hesse, respectively. In terms of precedence, the Tecks were ahead of the Battenbergs but they both had been created in result of morganatic marriages of princes, a fact that constituted a stigma at the time [thence, the notoriety of unequal marriages, the topic of this thread].
I would tend to believe though, that of the three issues you quoted #3 was the decisive one.

And one correction, Teck was not a dukedom per se and Battenberg was not a principality either. They were just that, courtesy titles.
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Old 01-24-2008, 08:04 PM
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I know this is slightly off topic but what would happen if one of the royal children married another royal from another royal family? I'm sure rules would be different for Crown Princess Victoria as opposed to Madeleine and carl Phillip. Any ideas?
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Old 01-24-2008, 11:57 PM
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As glad as I am that royals now can marry commoners, I also think that another marriage between two royals would be nice. It would have been rather sweet, if Madeleine got married to prince William, for example. I don't know excactly what the rules are though.
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Old 01-25-2008, 10:56 AM
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As glad as I am that royals now can marry commoners, I also think that another marriage between two royals would be nice. It would have been rather sweet, if Madeleine got married to prince William, for example. I don't know excactly what the rules are though.
I can't see why there would be any particular rules applied to a situation such as this - Princess Ingrid of Sweden managed to marry Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark without a lot of trouble.

I think that there would be more issues if it were the Crown Princess who wanted to marry another heir to a throne.
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Old 01-25-2008, 04:03 PM
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Maybe that was what tommy1716 meant?
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Old 02-01-2008, 08:24 PM
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Prince Carl Bernadotte, duke of östergötland married Countess Ebba von Rosen. Became Prince of Bernadotte later on.
Prince Oscar, duke of gotland (second son of oscar II) married Ebba Henrietta Munck of fulkila. Became Count Of wisborg
Prince Carl Johan, duke of dalarna married first a real commoner, and later on (1988) Countess Gunilla Wachtmeister of Johannihus. Became Count of wisborg.

All of these three has have their titles taken away from them and frozen out from the royal society in sweden. Why is that? Their brides isn't commoners.

And the king can restore titles and knight people in sweden, there is nothing in our constitution that says otherwise.
Crown Princess Viktorias boyfriend is a sad-sack. Our Queen was cultivated, educated and spoke (and speaks) 6-8 languages fluently. And King Carl XVI Gustaf was King when he married her, he had more to say about his life because of that.
I do not mind Viktoria marrying a commoner, just not him.
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