The Royal House of Bernadotte

Country: Sweden
Royal House Name: Bernadotte
Current Head: King Carl XVI Gustav (born: April 30, 1946) 
Reigned:  September 1973
Consort: Queen Silvia
Successor: Crown Princess Victoria 

ROME - MARCH 25: King Carl XVI Gustav of Sweden visits the gardens at Villa Madama on March 25, 2009 in Rome, Italy. King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden are on an official state visit to Italy.  (Photo by Elisabetta Villa/Getty Images)
King Carl XVI Gustav
During the 15th century, the Swedish monarchy traditionally ruled by members of nobility chosen within their own rank, in 1523 however, the country became hereditary monarchy when King Gustaf I freed the country from Denmark.

But the history of Swedish hereditary succession drastically changed in the early part of 19th century when the heir to the throne, Karl August died. The pro-France Swedish officers suggested to King Karl III that the throne must offer to Napoleon’s marshal, Jean Baptiste Bernadotte, who by then became Prince of Pontecorvo, the King relented and officially declared Bernadotte to be his successor. When he succeeded the throne, he reigned under the name Karl XIV Johan and annexed Norway on May 1, 1818 until 1905 when Norway declared its independence.
King Gustaf VI, Karl’s descendant married Princess Margarita of Connaught, daughter of Queen Victoria of England’s third son, Prince Arthur, the Duke of Connaught, but she died before Gustaf became King, Gustaf remarried to Margarita’s cousin, Louise Mountbatten, the maternal auntie of the Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip. The current Swedish King, Carl XVI Gustaf is the grandson of Gustaf VI and Princess Margarita.
ROME - MARCH 25: Queen Silvia of Sweden and King Carl XVI Gustav of Sweden pose for photographs as they visit the gardens at Villa Madama on March 25, 2009 in Rome, Italy. King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden are on an official state visit to Italy.  (Photo by Elisabetta Villa/Getty Images)
King Carl XVI Gustav and Queen Silvia
Traditionally, Sweden followed a primogeniture succession meaning a first born son is always the sovereign’s heir-apparent. But on January 1, 1980, the Act of Succession of 1979 was approved by the Parliament allowing a firstborn child to be the heir-apparent depriving Carl’s only son, Prince Carl Philip, of the throne in favor of his older sister, Princess Victoria. King Carl XVI Gustaf is the first Swedish heir to marry a commoner when he married Silvia Sommerlat, a native of Germany, in 1976, they have three children: Princess Victoria, Prince Carl Philip and Princess Madelaine.

ROYAL FAMILY OF SWEDEN

HM King Carl XVI Gustaf
HM Queen Silvia
HRH Princess Victoria, the Crown Princess
HRH Prince Carl Philip, the Duke of Varmland
HRH Princess Madelaine, the Duchess of  Halsingland

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