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3A moment in history? History painting – the art of painting various historical events – was popular in 19th century Europe and formed part of a romantic nationalism. Events that were seen as important to a country’s history were selected as scenes. The paintings were often made on large canvases so that the onlooker would feel small before the weight of his history, and so humbled by the historical events that they would be sure not to forget them. A recognisable historical figure would usually be positioned at the centre of the image. Witnesses to the event would also quite often be included in order to help propagate the story further. These witnesses would intensify the onlooker’s sensation of standing by and witnessing a moment in history. Although the term ‘history painting’ was used, this did not necessarily mean that the event had actually really happened at all. For example, Duke Charles did not really pull on the beard of his dead rival Klaus Fleming. It was also quite common to concentrate an entire story into a single picture. Imagination was blended together with highly realistic details. School wallcharts depicting historical events were often based on paintings by famous artists. Images of the environment and nature which did not feature historical figures, on the other hand, were often original images made exclusively for the charts.
1A painting of an event that likely never took place. Clas Fleming was an admiral in Finland and one of Duke Charle’s – the future King Charles IX’s – strongest opponents in the power struggle with Sigismund. After the battle of Imola in 1597, he fell ill and later died. Shortly after Fleming’s death, Duke Charles conquered Åbo Castle, which was under the command of Fleming’s widow, Ebba Stenbock. Fleming had not yet been buried and according to an anecdote, Charles supposedly opened the coffin in the royal chapel to check whether his enemy was truly dead. When he saw that it was Clas Fleming who lay in the coffin, it is rumoured that he tugged on his beard and said: “were you alive today, your head would not sit so securely”. Ebba Stenbock is said to have responded: “if my blessed Lord were still alive, then Your Grace would never have entered this castle.” The wallchart shows a chapel with a sarcophagus in the centre. Inside lies the corpse of Clas Fleming in an open casket. To the right stands his widow Ebba Stenbock and one his left hisdaughters dressed in mourning attire. Two mourning servants and some soldiers can be seen in the background. The central figure is Duke Charles in full battle armour. Duke Charles is pulling on Clas Fleming’s beard. Two years after this event, Duke Charles ordered the execution of Clas Fleming and Ebba Stenbock’s 21-year-old son, thereby killing off that part of the dynasty. It is this event and others that have influenced the way we see Charles IX. In a way, the artist has read history from the wrong perspective, and incorporated future feelings between Duke Charles and Ebba Stenbock into an event that probably never took place. It is worth wondering why a school wallchart was produced on a fictional event, painted by an artist from the 19th century. Perhaps the wallchart was used to discuss source criticism – if not, it has likely served to distort our understanding of what happened at Åbo castle in 1597. Even if the artist has painted an event that never happened, he nonetheless tried in other ways to produce a painting that was as authentic as could be. He took great care to find the right setting and accurate mourning attire from the time period for the women. The wallchart is based on the 1878 painting Duke Charles insulting the corpse of Clas Fleming by the Finnish painter Albert Edelfeldt. From the series Finnish Historical Wallcharts.
1Charles IX was Protector of the Realm in Sweden from 1599 until 1604 and king from 1604 until 1611. The black and white wallchart shows the king in profile facing toward the left. He is wearing armour and has a large, bushy collar around his neck. He holds a sword in his right, steel-gloved hand. Beside him sits a feathered helmet. He has a receded hairline and a moustache. Above and below the king are his ancestral tables (family trees). Under the portrait is Charles IX’s autograph, years of reign and motto: “God my comfort.” Depictions of Charles IX from the time bear witness to a strong personality who was feared by many. His presence was felt wherever he was. He also demonstrated that he could take decisions with dangerous consequences, not least for his relatives. He relentlessly pushed the power game between the three Vasa brothers and even the broader nobility was affected. At the same time, he was economically gifted and the measures he undertook were for the benefit of his own ambitions. The wallchart is based on a copper engraving by Hieronymus Nützel. He was German and worked in Sweden from 1592 until 1598. The king looks disciplined or determined in appearance. Charles IX was also sometimes referred to as “the ruthless one” (den skoningslöse) after the Linköping Bloodbath in 1600 where he was prosecutor in a treason case against several of the Swedish nobility who were sentenced to death. Wallcharts were often about learning to recognise figures, but this portrait breaks with that trend. While discussions of the king as unrelenting may have been more common before, nowadays it is a different image of the king that is more often used. In such portraits, it is his notable haircut, a bald dome with two strands of hair arranged in the shape of a cross, which is most prominent. Charles was born in 1550 and died in 1611. He was the youngest son of Gustav Vasa, and half-brother to John III. Charles was Protestant and used religion to take power from his brother Sigismund, who was a Catholic. Charles IX founded a predecessor to Gothenburg (known as the first Göteborg at Färjenäs on Hisingen) in 1603, although the city was razed to the ground in 1611 by the Danish. Charles had ten children in two marriages with Maria of the Palatinate-Simmern and Christina of Holstein-Gottorp respectively, and one further child with a mistress. His oldest surviving son, Gustav Adolf, went on to become king of Sweden. From the series "The Kings and Reigning Queens of Sweden", 1910.
1Charles X Gustav was king of Sweden from 1654 until 1660. The black and white wallchart shows Charles X Gustav from the hips up. He is facing toward the left and is wearing armour (cuirass) and commander sash. He is holding a baton. He is resting his hand on his helmet and his rapier is sticking out at the right. Beneath the image is Charles X Gustav’s autograph, years of reign and motto: “In God I rest my fate, he shall make it” Charles X Gustav had a short reign, but he is nonetheless regarded as a successful general in the history books for leading the March over the Belts. His approach toward foreign policy can be described as aggressive, which is something that has been somewhat toned down in historical accounts. He attacked Poland in order to expand Sweden’s territory. The invasion was a failure for the king, however, and he was forced to withdraw the Swedish forces. The wallchart is based on a painting by Sébastien Bourdon and depicts Charles Gustav when he was still heir to the throne. Bourdon was a French painter who resided at Queen Christina’s court in 1652 and 1653. The heir is dressed as an officer. His body is contorted in the same way as Christina’s in another portrait painted by Bourdon, however the position is not as well suited to a more robust frame clad in armour. Charles Gustav of Palatine Zweibrücken was born in 1622 and died from a sudden illness at the Riksdag in Gothenburg in 1660. He was the son of Catherine of Sweden, Countess Palatine of Kleeburg, and the German-Swedish John Casimir, Count Palatine of Zweibrücken-Kleeburg. He was the grandson of Charles IX and cousin of Queen Christina, who appointed him as her successor when she came of age. Upon Christina’s coronation, Charles Gustav was sworn in as hereditary prince. Charles X Gustav marked the beginning of the House of Palatinate-Zweibrücken in Sweden. He is also counted as the first king in the Carolinian era. Charles X Gustav was married to Hedvig Eleonora of Holstein-Gottorp. He had a son with her and five children in a marriage with another woman. His son Charles (XI) went on to become king of Sweden. From the series “The Kings and Reigning Queens of Sweden”, 1910.
1Charles XI was king of Sweden from 1660 until 1697. A regency controlled the country up until 1672. The black and white wallchart shows Charles XI from the knees up. He is bare-headed and wearing a buff coat and a cuirass. The cuirass is a protective breast-plate and a buff coat is a military coat made from leather which is worn under the cuirass. The king stands with his right arm leaning against a cannon. The face of a lion can be seen at the bottom right of the image and in the background there are various banners. Beneath the image is Charles XI’s autograph, years of reign and motto: “In God I rest my fate, he shall make it” “The Lord has become my protector.” Charles XI had difficulties reading and writing, but was good at learning things off by heart. He is often described as uncomfortable in social situations and preferred to be outdoors. He almost became a different person around his horses – then all shyness was as good as gone. On the battlefield, the king often took steadfast decisions and was ruthless against his opponents. He travelled around the country and spoke with the people, but that also gave him great control over the administration of the kingdom. That is something that he held onto with an iron fist. Charles XI inherited the throne when he was just four and a half years-of-age. The lion at the king’s side in the portrait is a symbol of strength, courage and Sweden. Charles XI is dressed as a soldier and leaning comfortably against a cannon. In the background there are drapes, but not just any old drapes, but rather campaign banners. The picture shows a young regnant who is full of fighting spirit and power. The wallchart is based on a painting by the German artist David Klöker Ehrenstrahl, signed 1680. He was born as David Klöker or Klöcker but added Ehrenstrahl when he was ennobled in Sweden. He has also painted a portrait of the king in which he sits on horseback. Charles was born in 1655 and died in 1697 of an illness. He was the son of Charles X Gustav and Hedvig Eleonora and became king following his father’s death at the Riksdag in Gothenburg in February 1660. Sweden was under the control of a regency until he was declared an adult at 17 years-of-age in 1672. He was first coronated in 1675. Charles XI was married to Ulrika Eleonora of Denmark and had seven children. His eldest son was his successor and became King Charles XII of Sweden. His youngest daughter Ulrika Eleonora was queen regnant of Sweden from 1719 until 1720. From the series "The Kings and Reigning Queens of Sweden", 1910.
1Eric XIV is faced with the decision to sign the death sentence for several Swedish nobles, including many members of the Sture dynasty, who are imprisoned and awaiting their sentence. The year is 1567 and the nobles will come to be killed in the so-called Sture Murders. The scene itself is a concentrated version of a longer story. The middle of the wallchart depicts the anxious and pensive Eric XIV, dressed in red with a paper in his hand. He is sitting on the floor and leaning against his lover and wife to be, Karin Månsdotter, who is dressed entirely in white. She holds his hand and looks fearfully at the king’s prosecutor, Jöran Persson. Persson is dressed entirely in black and partly hidden in the shadows. He looks disapprovingly back at Karin and hands a quill to the king. The artist wanted to depict this dramatic moment and the battle between good, in the form of the young Karin Månsdotter, and evil, in the form of Jöran Persson. He shows the anxiety felt by Eric, who believes himself to be the subject of a conspiracy, and strengthens this through the sequence of chosen colours: white, red, black. The scene depicts Karin Månsdotter as an innocent figure, and not as a dangerous seductress who has manipulated the king, which had been a common image beforehand. The artist has instead taken the position that Jöran Persson was behind many of the decisions with fatal consequences signed by Eric XIV. Later historical accounts have shown that Persson prompted or encouraged the king to the highest degree in many of the matters that resulted in Eric XIV being imprisoned. The painting is in many ways typical of its time in its depiction of the battle between good and evil, innocence and malevolence, light and dark. In 1568, Eric XIV was deposed by his brothers John and Charles. One reason for this was that he suffered from mental illness and paranoia. Another was that he had married his concubine (a lover who had the approval of the court), Karin Månsdotter. She was the daughter of a jailkeeper at the Tre Kronor Castle and 15 years-of-age when the king, who was 32 at the time, took a liking to her. She is said to have had a calming influence on him. Eric XIV was murdered by arsenic poisoning in prison in 1577. Karin Månsdotter was given an estate in Finland where she lived a peaceful but affluent life up until her death in 1612. Jöran Persson was not a noble, but became Eric’s right hand man and prosecutor in the king’s private court, the Höga Nämnden. He was hated by many and especially by the nobility. The dark image of Jöran Persson was created after his death by his worst enemies. In connection with Eric’s deposition, Jöran Persson was tortured, executed and dismembered. The wallchart is inspired by an oil painting by Georg von Rosen from 1871, which is currently on display at the National Museum. From the series Swedish Historical Wallcharts, 1932.
1Eric XIV was the king of Sweden from 1560 until 1568. The black and white wall chart shows Eric XIV from the thighs up. He is dressed as a general with an armour-esque black patterned top. His sword sticks out to the right and he is holding a baton in his left hand. He has short hair and a beard that is divided into two strands at the bottom. At the bottom of the image is Eric XIV’s autograph, years of reign and motto: “God gives to whom he will.” Eric XIV was the oldest of Gustav Vasa’s sons and significantly involved in a power struggle with his two half-brothers. The degree to which he was sane is a topic that has frequently been discussed. But he also had a clear agenda. Eric XIV wanted to transform Sweden into a modern monarchy and was highly familiar with current trends across the courts of Europe. The portrait is not dated, but Eric is young in appearance. He became king when he was 27 years-of-age and reigned for eight years. The portrait was therefore most likely painted in the 1560s. It is said that Eric XIV was conscious of fashion and took care in his appearance. The image depicts a young king at the height of his power, elegantly dressed. He is cultured and well-read. The medallion indicates his interest in astrology, while his clothes and sword demonstrate that he is prepared for battle. The words “artist unknown” are printed on the wallchart, although it has later become known that the portrait was painted by Domenicus ver Wildt. He was from the Netherlands and worked in Sweden between 1556 and 1566. The original is in colour and more clearly shows the king’s renowned red beard. Eric was born in 1533 and died in 1577. He was the eldest son of Gustav Vasa and succeeded his father as king. He was deposed by his half-brothers John and Carl and later poisoned by arsenic while in prison at the command of John III. Eric had four children from his marriage with Karin Månsdotter and four children with his mistresses. From the series "The Kings and Reigning Queens of Sweden", 1910.
1Gamla latin, "Old latin", the home of the Gothenburg School Museum between 1923 and 1968. The building - seen in the center of the picture - was inofficially called Old latin after the secondary grammar school, Göteborgs högre allmänna latinläroverk, moved out. When the photo was taken in 1935 the building was used by the Gothenburg school administration. The School Museum was allowed to use parts of the top floor of the building. In 1968, the school administration moved on to new office premises on S:t Sigfridsgatan. The School Museum was stowed away while the administration looked for new accommodations for the collections.
1Gustav II Adolf (Gustavus II Adolphus) Gustav II Adolf was king of Sweden from 1611 until 1632. The black and white wallchart shows the king from the hips up. He is wearing a hat and a traditional Polish costume. The cape was white embroidery and a buff coat, which is a type of undercoat made from elk leather. He is holding a cane in his right hand. His sword can be seen sticking out from under his cape to the left. He is standing in front of a newly built bridge in Frankfurt am Main. Beneath the portrait is Gustav II Adolf’s autograph, years of reign and mottos: “Blessed be the Lord and his refuge” “With God and victorious arms.” “God with us.” Gustav II Adolf was described at the time and in historical accounts as the defender of Protestantism in 17th century Europe, and he was undoubtedly Protestant. But his campaigns in Europe were also part of his plan to transform Sweden into a great power. The king’s ambitions resulted in a great deal of human suffering and they put the country in a very difficult economic situation. The text “artist unknown” is printed on the wallchart. According to Skokloster Castle, which owns the original, the oil painting is by either the father or son Matthäus Merian, possibly by the son based on a copper engraving by the father. Both Matthäus Merian the older and younger were Swiss-German engravers and publishers. The portrait shows the king when he was in Ausburg. This image of Gustav II Adolf became important to accounts of Swedish history. There, the king was seen as a hero and as a martyr who died for the one true faith – Protestantism. After the death of Gustav II Adolf, his portrait appeared in many different reproductions, including glasses with his image on them, paintings, dishes, cups and pitchers. He is also the only regent in Sweden to have been officially honoured by the Riksdag with the epithet “the Great”. This occurred in 1633. Gustav Adolf was born in 1594 and died in 1632, at the Battle of Lützen. He was the son of Charles IX and Christina of Holstein-Gottorp. He has become known internationally as a military commander and the founder of the Swedish empire. He also founded several new Swedish cities, including Gothenburg in 1621. He had one surviving child, his daughter Christina, from his marriage with Maria Eeleonora of Brandenburg, and a son that he had with his mistress. Christina went on to become the queen of Sweden. From the series "The Kings and Reigning Queens of Sweden", 1910.
1Gustav II Adolf was the king of Sweden from 1611 until 1632. The wallchart shows a portrait of Gustav II Adolf. The artwork is sepia-toned. The king can be seen from the waist up and is dressed in armour. He has a moustache and a short pointed beard. He is holding a baton in his hand, which indicates his status as a military commander. Gustav II Adolf was extremely near-sighted, and one of his batons also functioned as a telescope. It was made from a paperboard roll with a lens in each end. It was probably not particularly effective as a visual aid. Gustav II Adolf is described as the defender of Protestantism in 17th century Europe and he was undoubtedly Protestant. But his campaigns in Europe were also part of his plans to turn Sweden into a great power. The king’s ambitions resulted in a great deal of human suffering and they put the country in a very difficult economic situation. The wallchart is a signed original by the Danish artist and art teacher Lauritz Baltzer. The image is probably based on a copper engraving by the Flemish artist Paulus Pontius. Pontius, in turn, based his portrait on a painting by another Flemish artist, Antoon van Dyck, although he has inverted the image. Van Dyck’s portrait was painted at some point during Gustav II Adolf’s reign between 1611 and 1632. In the book Iconographia Gustavi Adolphi, it is noted that the portrait gives the king an “idealised face type” and that “there are many imitations and copies of this piece, which has had great significance for subsequent perceptions of Gustav II Adolf’s appearance”. Gustav Adolf was born in 1594 and died in 1632 at the Battle of Lützen. He was the son of Charles IX and Christina of Holstein-Gottorp. He has become known internationally as a military commander and the founder of the Swedish empire. He also founded several new Swedish cities, including Gothenburg in 1621. He had one surviving child, his daughter Christina, from his marriage with Maria Eeleonora of Brandenburg, and a son that he had with his mistress. Christina went on to become the queen of Sweden. From the series General History Wallcharts, 1885. This series was produced by Baltzer and his colleague at the Högre Realläroverk school in Gothenburg, Ernst Carlson.
1Gustav I’s farewell speech to the Riksdag of the Estates 1560 On 16 June 1560, Gustav Vasa holds his farewell speech to the Riksdag of the Estates – the equivalent at the time of today’s Riksdag (parliament). He thanks the people for electing to elevate him to royal highness and patriarch. He also thanks them for their faith and assistance and their grace and blessing for God’s word and wisdom. The wallchart shows the king sitting on his throne, right in the middle of the picture. He has a long, white beard. Beside the throne sit his sons Eric and John (with crowns) as well as Magnus and Charles. They all wear cloaks with ermine-lined collars, which was a royal privilege. There are many men in the room listening to the king, many with their heads bowed. At this time, Gustav Vasa was marked by his age. His hand is outstretched in a blessing gesture and he looks old but not worn out. In reality, the king was heavily plagued by gout and rotten teeth. In his speech, he looked back over his reign and formally approved his last will and testament. He compared himself to a previous king, David, who had been called upon by God to save the land from the evil Danish king. The image conveys the idea of a founding father, loved and revered by his people. Gustav Vasa died on 29 September of the same year at 64 years of age. This scene is set in 1560, but the crowns worn by sons Eric and John in the picture are modelled on crown prince crowns that Gustav III had made for his brothers before his own coronation in 1772. The king’s crown resembles the royal crowns worn by Eric XIV and Maria Eleonora, which were both used at the coronation of kings and queens far into the future. From the series Swedish History in Pictures, 1867.
1Gustavus II Adolphus’ farewell speech to the estates In May 1630, Gustav II Adolf sets off to participate in the 30 Year War himself. He does so after delivering a farewell speech to the Riksdag of the Estates before his departure for Germany. He believed himself to be “standing before God, the highest judge of all”. By that, he meant that his reason for going to war was to defend his faith (and the faith of all Swedes, Protestantism) and to be loyal toward God, and not to strengthen his own power within Europe, which is what he was accused of doing. The school wallchart shows the King with the crown jewels laid out before him. In his left arm sits his four-year-old daughter Christina, who will soon take charge of the kingdom. Quite simply, he has the future of the country in his hand. Christina would take over the throne from her father before she even turned six-years-old. Many people bear witness to his speech, and his promise to do his utmost. The image is central to the story of Gustav II Adolf as a true father of the nation who took responsibility for the wellbeing of the kingdom, despite understanding that it would be a difficult task. That is the legacy that was considered important to convey. Artist: Olle Hjortzberg. From the series Historical Wallcharts, 1936.
1Gustav Vasa, or Gustav I, was the king of Sweden between 1523 and 1560. The black and white wallchart shows a so-called three-quarter portrait with the king partly in profile. He is looking to the right and has a beard and a moustache. He is wearing a patterned jacket and a dark barette (a type of beret) with a bright plume. He is holding a pair of leather gloves in his hands. The spirals under the portrait are Gustav Vasa’s signature and autograph. Also included are the years of his reign and his four mottos: “All power is of God.” “Blessed is he who fears the Lord.” “If God is with us, who is against us?” “The Lord is the earth and everything in it.” It is not uncommon for Gustav Vasa to be depicted as the father of Sweden. With him, the idea of a Nordic union was put to rest and the journey towards the Swedish nation of today was begun. Another common depiction of the king is that of a powerful parvenu who did not hesitate to involve himself in all matters large and small with a furious frenzy. The portrait was painted at the beginning of the 1540s by a German painter, Jacob Binck, who was the court painter to the Danish court under Christian III. As part of the negotiations between Sweden and Denmark in September 1541, Gustav Vasa asked if he could “borrow” Binck from Christian III. Binck then worked as court painter in Sweden in 1541 and 1542 and painted the most well-known portrait of the king. It is one of the oldest remaining portraits of him. Gustav Vasa was around 45 years-of-age at the time. For Vasa, it was highly important both to spread images of himself as king and to ensure that such images were of a high quality and showed his best side. Painting royal portraits was almost a genre in its own right, which is why artists were able to move from court to court. Gustav Vasa considered it important that he was painted by an artist who was suitable for other kings given that he himself was not from a clear line of monarchs. From an international perspective, the House of Vasa was new and untested as a royal dynasty. The portrait has become one of those images that is used time and time again whenever anything is written about Gustav Vasa. It is therefore not unusual that it served as the model for a wallchart. The same image was also used on the Swedish five kronor note between 1965 and 1981. Gustav Eriksson Vasa was born in 1497 and died in 1560. He was Protector of the Realm from 1521 until 1523, until he was elected king of Sweden on 6 June 1523 when Sweden exited from the Kalmar union. It is for that reason that the National Day of Sweden is celebrated on 6 June. Later in history, Gustav Vasa was elevated to father of the nation and transformed into an important national symbol. Gustav Vasa was married three times, to Catherine of Saxe-Lauenberg, Margaretta Eriksdotter and Catherine Stenbock. He fathered eleven children. Three of them, Eric, John and Charles, also went on to become Swedish kings. From the series "The Kings and reigning queens of Sweden", 1910.
1Gustav Vasa at Mora Following a month on the run in the Swedish province of Dalecarlia, Gustav Eriksson (later Gustav Vasa) stands outside Mora church and talks to the public. The year is 1520, it is Christmas day, and Gustav is requesting help and support in his battle against Christian II. The people of Mora are unsure, so Gustav continues to flee towards the Norwegian border. When they later hear about the king’s many executions and his decision to disarm the peasants and oblige them to pay additional taxes, they change their minds. Two men on skis catch up with Gustav in the village of Sälen. In the middle of the wallchart stands the future king. He is young and strong and speaks forcefully to the people. The image shows the support Gustav Vasa receives. The two men at the forefront of the image are witnesses to the entire event. This occurrence is central to the mythology of Gustav Vasa, man of the people. He manages to rally support in Dalecarlia under difficult circumstances and is appointed commander (hövitsman) at only 24 years-of-age. This becomes a part of the story about the powerful Gustav Vasa. The image foretells and explains later events in the life of the king and the history of Sweden. It was in Mora that the call to remove Christian II from power began, and it is between Sälen and Mora where the Vasaloppet cross-country ski race takes place today. The publisher is unknown, but the wallchart resembles the painting Gustav Speaks to the Dalecarlians at Mora by the historical painter Johan Gustaf Sandberg. From the series Swedish History in Pictures, 1867
1Historical portraits? Throughout the ages, artists have made use of codes, symbols or objects to help onlookers understand who or what it is that they can see. In the 17th century, many people did not actually know what the king looked like, given that photography had not been invented. Paintings were therefore very important, even if many citizens did not get the opportunity to view them. All of the school wallcharts in the exhibition depicting portraits of kings (most of which relate to the House of Vasa) are based on older paintings and they are often exact copies. When the wallcharts were manufactured around 100 years ago, the objective was not to show how historical figures really looked in the 16th and 17th centuries. Instead, old ideas about the ruling class were reinforced. Gustav Vasa was portrayed as the nation’s father, Eric XIV was a noble monarch and Queen Christina was a pure and wise feminine figure. The armour worn by Gustav II Adolf and many others symbolised that the king was always prepared for battle. In this way, the school wallcharts served to teach students how to recognise the various kings and queens, rather than to act as a basis for discussion about what these people were really like, or how their leadership affected the citizens of Sweden.
1In this part of the exhibition you may read about history painting, how an event or a point in the course of history has been depicted on wall charts.
1John III was king of Sweden from 1568 until 1592. The black and white wallchart shows a standing John III, facing slightly toward the left. The king has a serious expression and is fashionably dressed in black. He has a long beard and a small hat with a feather. He is completely dressed in black with a short coat, puffy trousers and hose (stockings or tights). He is holding a sword adorned with jewels in his left hand and a pair of gloves in his right hand. At the bottom of the portrait is John III’s autograph, years or reign and motto: “God our protector.” John III attempted to balance Protestantism with Catholicism. In doing so, he hoped to make things easier for the worldly rulers – that is to say, improve his own chances to reign as well as the chances that his son would inherit the throne in Catholic Poland. At the same time, he was merciless in his quest for power: he was in conflict with one brother and involved in the murder of the other. The artist of the portrait is the Dutch Johan Baptista van Uther, who was the court painter to John III and worked in Sweden from 1562. The portrait, which currently hangs at Gripsholm Castle, is not the most well-known depiction of John III, but because it resembles another portrait of the king, painted by the same artist, school children would likely have recognised him in any case. John was born in 1537 and died in 1592 after a longer period of illness. He was the second eldest son of Gustav Vasa, brother to Charles and half-brother to Eric. He was known as Gustav Vasa’s favourite son. Together with Charles, he deposed Eric XIV and later had him poisoned. John was married twice. He had four children in two marriages with Catherine Jagiellon and Gunilla Bielke respectively, and four more children with a mistress. Sigismund, his son with the Polish princess Catherine Jagiellon, went on to become king of both Poland and Sweden. From the series "the Kings and Reigning Queens of Sweden", 1910.
1King Gustav with Archbishop Johannes Magnus 1526 Here, one of Sweden’s last Catholic archbishops toasts Gustav Vasa in 1526. Gustav Vasa had previously appointed Johannes Magnus as majgreve and on this occasion he is showing his thanks by toasting the king. Majgreve was a Medieval title connected to festivities in May and the celebration of Whitsuntide. The wallchart shows Gustav Vasa and the archbishop Johannes Magnus standing beside a table with spectators sitting around it. The archbishop has a goblet in his hand. The problem was that the archbishop had become too self-assured and the king considered that Johannes Magnus saw himself as an equal to the king. This absolutely could not be accepted and Johannes Magnus fell into disfavour. The image therefore gives us insight into the king’s ability to take action. There is a certain hierarchy in place and things do not turn out well for those who attempt to change it. From the series Swedish History in Pictures, 1867.
1Mining in the 16th century The wallchart shows ore mining in an open mine at Bergslagen in the 16th century. Ladders lead down to the different levels. The miners work while a group of men looks out over the mine. One of them is dressed in a red outfit with gold details. It is Gustav Vasa inspecting the work. The man at the forefront of the image is tossing a ham into the so-called fire-setting pyre which served to loosen up the wall of the mine. Pork was believed to have raised the heat and thereby helped it to penetrate more deeply into the wall. The text explains that: “in our image, the king’s presence may have been the reason for the expensive act of tossing pork into the pyre.” Text: Arthur Nordén Artist: Olle Hjortzberg. Signed 1935. From the series Historical Wallcharts.
1Photography of Göteborgs Nya Elementarläroverk för flickor, a school for girls, in 1910. By the time the School Museum moved in to new premises on the third and fourth floors of the school, the building hade been renamed Engelbrektsskolan. After the museum moved to the East India building on Norra Hamngatan in 1991, Tyska skolan (The German school) took over the premises. Today, the school goes by the name Victoriaskolan.
1Queen Christina Christina reigned as the queen of Sweden from 1632 until 1654. She took full control of the country in 1644 when she was declared an adult. The black and white wallchart shows Christina from the knees up. She is facing toward the right. She is wearing a silk dress with long sleeves and holding a letter in her right hand. In her left hand, over her shoulder, she is holding something which could be either a bluish-grey veil, a feather or a quill. She is standing by a wooden railing and a park landscape can be seen in the background. She is wearing a crown of citrus blossoms on her head. Beneath the image is Christina’s autograph, years of reign and motto: “Wisdom supports the nation.” Many in Sweden were outraged when Christina renounced the crown and converted to Catholicism. She was the daughter of a king who had led campaigns in the name of Protestantism and she responded by converting to another religion. At its core, it was a complicated issue. Today, many have taken an interest in her capacity to rule, which varies depending on whether she is depicted as a woman, a queen or a monarch. As a woman and a queen, she was expected to get married and have children, but as the monarch, this would mean the risk of losing power to her consort or of dying in childbirth. In any case, she should be viewed primarily as the reigning monarch of her time. The wallchart was based on a painting by David Beck. The portrait was painted for Christina’s coronation in 1650. Beck was from the Netherlands and worked in Sweden between 1647 and 1651. As a painter, he was much sought after and frequently under the employment of the Swedish nobility. The original is in colour and more clearly depicts how the light shimmers on the queen’s silk dress. Queen Christina was given a so-called ‘manly upbringing’ in order to prepare her as a monarch. Nonetheless, in portraits from the time she is often presented primarily as a feminine figure, and as a symbol for light and the illuminated. In this portrait, she is accompanied by several objects which represent nature. Christina herself is a symbol of divine power. Christina was born in 1626 and died in 1689 in Rome. She was the only surviving child of Gustav II Adolf and Maria Eleonora of Brandenburg. Her father died at war just before her sixth birthday. A regency governed the country until Christina was declared an adult in 1644 and took over the reign. She was first coronated as queen in 1650. In 1654, she renounced the crown to become a Catholic (the Swedish monarch had to be Protestant by law). After that, she lived in different places, including Brussels, Antwerp and Rome. As an adult, Christina did not want to get married. She did not have any children and appointed her cousin Charles Gustav of Palatine Zweibrücken as her successor. Even though they were related, Christina is considered the last monarch from the House of Vasa. From the series "The Kings and Reigning Queens of Sweden", 1910.
1Religious discourse between Olavus Petri and Peder Galle In connection with the Riksdag in Västerås in 1527, there was a debate regarding what the proper Christian doctrine should be: Protestantism or Catholicism. The artist has taken a number of liberties here and combined two different events together. The wallchart shows the two men together in a large hall full of listeners. The king sits to the right and listens intently. Olaus Petri, dressed in black, stands behind a low table with one hand over his heart. In order to indicate who is who, there is a portrait of Martin Luther leaning against the table in front of him. Peder Galle is standing by a pulpit and gesturing with one hand. He is wearing the robes of a Catholic priest in purple, white and gold, and stands facing Petri. In 1526, Gustav Vasa had asked the council to undertake a religious colloquy and determine the differences between Protestantism and Catholicism. The spokesperson for Protestantism was Olavus Petri (more often spelt Olaus), who was born as Olof Pettersson and became Sweden’s reformer and a contributor toward publication of the New Testament in Swedish. Peder Galle was a Catholic priest and professor of theology in Uppsala. Before this debate, the two men had only communicated in writing. Peder Galle understood that the subject was highly charged and avoided entering into open debate with Olaus Petri. The question came up again in Västerås in 1527, but only after a decision about the reformation had been taken by the church in favour of Protestantism. The history books nonetheless sometimes indicate that the debate was undertaken before a decision was made. The artist has staged an historic event by collecting together all information in a single image and creating a sort of summary which favours dramaturgy over historical accuracy. The wallchart is modelled on the painting entitled Dispute between Olaus Petri and Peder Galle by the historical painter Carl Gustav Hellqvist from 1883. It is currently on display at the Museum of Västerås. From the series Swedish Historical Wallcharts, 1932.
1Riksdag in Westerås 1527 At the Riksdag in Västerås in 1527, a crucial step was taken in the efforts to separate worldly and religious powers. It was also in this place that Gustav Vasa pushed through the reformation. He reduced the church’s economic and military powers and increased his own. The wallchart shows how the king sits on his throne and looks on at a group of priests who are about to sign a paper. There is a large number of onlookers in the room. Gustav Vasa sits comfortably on his throne while the priests look apprehensive as they hand a quill to the bishop to sign the decision. The religious conflict did not come to an end until the Uppsala Synod in 1593, but in Västerås the king pushed through changes that meant that a large proportion of the priests’ income would accrue to him. He also confiscated a number of goods from the church. This changed the balance of power between the church and the king in a crucial way that became a milestone in Swedish history. The scene clearly shows that it is now the king who stands over the church, and not the other way around. From the series Swedish History in Pictures, 1867.
1Rolling wallchart showing Stockholm’s historic centre as it appeared during the Vasa era (1521–1611). View to the south from Brunkeberg. At the bottom of the image there are detailed pictures of different buildings. The wallchart is partly based on panoramic paintings by Frans Hogenberg and Matthäus Merian from the 1570s and 1640s respectively. Artist: Knut Lindholm. Signed 1926.
1Rolling wallchart with a map of the Nordic region, including Swedish areas on the continent. In the top left-hand corner there is a smaller map of Central Europe inset. Karl XII’s “Russian campaign” is marked on this map by a solid red line and Lewnhaupt’s campaign is marked by a dashed red line. There is a box with explanatory information at the bottom right of the wallchart. Originator: Hugo Valentin. Published 1933.
1Rolling wallchart with a map of the northern parts of Europe: a larger map with two smaller ones inset. It shows Central Europe in the middle of the 17th century and Eastern Europe at the beginning of the 18th century. The main map shows the wars that began and ended during the time of the Swedish empire. The countries are shaded in different colours and the lines indicate the various campaigns. A red line shows the campaign of Gustav II Adolf, a green line shows the campaign of Karl XII, a white dot with a green circle shows prison camps in Russia and a red icon indicates a castle or fortress. The inset maps show additional campaigns and the German states around 1650. Artist: Einar Dahlén Published 1946.
1School wallcharts have become trendy design objects and popular collectibles. They are beautiful images with a glimmer of nostalgia that can be found at flea markets out in the country or ordered as expensive new editions. But upon closer inspection, the wallcharts offer more than just nostalgia. They were designed to be pedagogical and detailed, often formative and moralising. Students should be able to contemplate the pictures and learn on their own account. The Museum of Gothenburg has a large collection of school wallcharts that we are delighted to put on display. At the moment, we have two exhibitions on the subject. One is he online exhibition you are visiting right now, “School wallcharts – from classroom to vintage” which focuses on wallcharts on Swedish history during the 16th and 17th centuries, the same period as our major exhibition “The birth of Gothenburg”. The other, “School wallcharts from classroom to vintage”, takes a slightly broader view with nature- and animal wallcharts as well as history. This exhibition can be visited in the museum until December 2018. Both exhibitions have been made possible through support from the Society for the Promotion of Public Education in the Diocese of Gothenburg. How do we use history? The school wallcharts did not only depict ancient times and faraway lands, but also reflected contemporary Swedish life in both the country and the city. Images of the unfamiliar were often prejudiced or even racist – while life in Sweden was idealised. In this way, the charts laid the foundations for an imagined Sweden that many hark back to today, but which perhaps never really existed. The scenes printed on the school wallcharts show us how schools have considered and partially created Swedish history by blending together fact and fiction.
1School wallchart with a map of the areas that belonged to Sweden in the 16th century. Also visible are the countries around the Baltic sea, Denmark and Norway. The areas belonging to Sweden are marked in yellow. Borders are marked in red. The Swedish coat of arms is inset at the top left with its lion and three crowns. Along the entire length of the map at the right-hand side there are texts about Sweden’s surface area, population, diocese, cities and industries. The map was original an appendix to the Swedish Tourist Associations’ yearbook 1941. Artist: Eva Billow
1Sigismund was the king of Sweden from 1592 until 1599. He was also kind of Poland (as Zygmunt III Waza) and Grand Duke of Lithuania from 1587 until 1632. The black and white wallchart shows a serious Sigismund in a round frame in the centre of the image. Outside of the frame sit statues of women and cherubs (small angels) in a classical style. The king has an upturned moustache and goatee. He has a large and tightly fitted bushy round collar in white. Under the portrait is Sigismund’s autograph. The words “Serenissimo Pientissimo et Potentissimo” can be literally translated as “Fair, God-fearing and Powerful”. Under the portrait is Sigismund’s autograph, years of reign and motto: “For justice and the people.” “The king’s heart (is) in the hand of the Lord.” “From the heaven is the highest given.” Sigismund was in many ways a king with large claims to power. In Sweden, it is often forgotten that his kingdom was very broad and that he reigned over both Sweden and Poland, and that he was also the Grand Duke of Lithuania. As a Catholic, Sigismund is often seen as a parenthesis or an offshoot in Swedish history. A common opinion among the nobility was that order was only restored when Charles IX took over the throne. With him, Sweden once more had a Protestant monarch who could continue the reformation work that Gustav Vasa had begun. The portrait is based on a copper engraving by Aegidius Sadler. Sadler was an internationally renowned portrait painter and active in the courts of Prague, among other places. The artist has focused on Sigismund’s mottos and inserted different symbols for worldly and divine power. The contrast between this portrait and those of other Vasa kings indicates that Sigismund belongs to a different tradition which visually is more in line with the court in Bohemia – on his mother’s side, Sigismund had a number of ancestors from several significant royal houses in Europe. Sigismund Vasa was born in 1566 and died in 1632. His parents were the future king John III and the Polish princess Catherine Jagiellon and he was raised as a Catholic. When Sigismund was born, his parents were being held in prison at Gripsholm Castle. As king, Sigismund tried to control Sweden from Poland. He was challenged by his uncle Duke Charles and a Swedish religious and civil war broke out. Sigismund was deposed by Duke Charles in 1598. Sigismund had twelve children in marriage, first with Anne of Austria and then with her sister, Constance of Austria. His eldest son, Władysław IV Vasa, was king of Poland between 1632 and 1648. His eldest surviving son from his second marriage, John II Casimir Vasa, was king of Poland from 1648 until 1668. He was the last of the Vasas to reign over Poland. From the series "The Kings and Reigning Queens of Sweden", 1910.
1Signboard for the Gothenburg School Museum. The sign would have hung over the entrance of the museum, either while it was situated in the Old Latin building on Hvitfeldtsplatsen (1923-1968) and/or on Linnégatan 72 (1909-1919).
1Swedes and Native Americans in New Sweden The wallchart shows a landscape in Delaware, USA, which belonged to Sweden for a short period in the 17th century. In the middle of the image, there are two people in positions of authority, one wearing Western clothing and another in leather trousers with a feather headdress. A number of native Americans and Swedes are farming corn and building houses. In wallcharts that show other countries, people are often depicted as foreign, perhaps exciting, strange or dangerous. Today, many of these scenes and descriptions would fall under the terms of exoticisation and racism. The artists had often not visited the places in question themselves. Artist: Lennart Krook. From the series Images of Sweden Across Time, 1947.
1The Abdication of Queen Christina in 1654 In 1654, Queen Christina decided to abdicate. The event took place at Uppsala Castle. As her successor, she had chosen her cousin, the future King Charles X Gustav. Because the crown was being given to a cousin, power remained within the family. The wallchart pictures Christina surrounded by a group of men. She stands by a podium and has the crown atop a cushion in her hands. She passes it to an older man, who may be the Lord High Chancellor, Axel Oxenstierna. To the queen’s right stands her successor, Karl Gustav. Both of the royals wear cloaks embroidered with white ermine fur. Before the queen lies the sceptre and globus cruciger on a low table. Queen Christina (1626-1689) became the Queen of Sweden in 1632 and was regnant from 1644 until 1654. She abdicated the throne to convert to Catholicism. According to law, the Swedish monarch had to be Protestant. Queen Christina is unique in Swedish history. Abdicating on the grounds of religion is even unique internationally. The image’s composition shows how the queen is still exalted by others, despite having removed her crown. In the background there are portraits of her parents, for even if Christina was an abdicated queen, she would always be the daughter of a hero king. Queen Christina is also significant because she abdicated under peaceful circumstances and not on the grounds of a scandal or mistake. In this way, she has still remained the symbol of a previous idea about female virtue. From the series Swedish History in Pictures, 1867.
1The Battle of Lützen 1632 The fog was thick on the battlefield at Lützen 1632. When the fog eased up somewhat, Gustav II Adolf commanded his army of Smålanders to follow him. The fog thickened again and the king was shot by an enemy. He took great risks and moved away from his men, further in behind enemy lines. His horse took a shot to the neck and the king was shot in the back and took a blow to the chest. As he lay on the ground, he was shot in the temple and killed. The school wallchart shows a battle scene. In the foreground, the fatally wounded king is about to fall from his horse but is being held up by his men. He is surrounded by fighting or injured men while dead bodies and wounded soldiers lie on the ground. The king’s clothes match up quite well with what the reality would have been. However, full-body armour would not have been worn during the Thirty Year War and hats would have been worn instead of helmets. That Gustav II Adolf became separated from his men was partly due to the fact that he was near-sighted. Other factors were that the fog was particularly strong and his horse, Streiff, was somewhat too strong. From the series Swedish History in Pictures, 1867.
1The Battle of Stångebro, near Linköping in 1598, has been of great significance to Swedish history in many ways. It was the last religious war to take place on Swedish soil and was fought over whether Sweden should be a Protestant or Catholic country. The Protestants were led by Duke Charles and the Catholics were led by the Polish-Swedish king Sigismund. It was a Swedish civil war, but the power struggle played out within one single family: Charles was the uncle of Sigismund. The wallchart shows how Duke Charles meets Sigismund’s forces at Stora and Lilla Stångebro. A group of soldiers is gathered around their leader who sits on horseback. They look down at a battlefield in complete chaos. Their clothing and expressions indicate that they are not Swedish. Perhaps it is Sigismund who is witnessing the fall of his forces? Sigismund came from Poland with an army of mercenaries and had support from the Swedish nobility, around 800 men. Duke Charles had gathered those who supported him, estimated to be around 12,000 men. Duke Charles was the victor at Stångebro and went on to become King Charles IX. Sigismund returned to Poland and was deposed in 1599. Protestantism secured its position in Sweden. Politics and religion were once more woven together. The image marks an end to religious conflicts within Sweden. From the series Swedish History in Pictures, 1867.
1<0x0a>The Death of Gustavus II Adolphus The Battle of Lützen 1632 is important in both Swedish and European history. The Swedish King Gustav II Adolf led a Protestant army and the battle was a Protestant victory. For Sweden, however, the king’s death was a political set-back. The news did not reach Sweden for a good month. The wallchart shows a battle scene with Gustav II Adolf just at the moment when he was fatally wounded at the Battle of Lützen on 6 November. The king can be seen in the middle of the image, on the verge of falling off his horse. He is surrounded by fighting or wounded men and horses. To school children, the wallchart conveyed the image of a “hero”. The king is our saviour who has offered his life to the Swedish people in the fight against the infidels, which is to say, those who held the “wrong” Christian faith. The image is strongly idealising. The background is dark while the king is dressed in light colours. The king stands for hope and light. His body is positioned in such a way that it calls to mind paintings which depict the Christian motif of Christ being taken down from the cross. The wallchart is based on a painting by Carl Wahlbom from 1855, which is currently on display at the National Museum in Stockholm. From the series Swedish Historical Wallcharts, 1932.
1The history of school wallcharts Throughout the first half of the 19th century, school wallcharts were simple and focused on reading and counting. Christianity was an important subject. At the end of the century, charts relating to natural sciences, history and geography began to circulate. The majority were initially imported from Germany, before the first Swedish charts entered into production in the 1890s. “Buy Swedish!” was the call that came from the General School Teacher’s Association of Sweden, which also wanted to see more realistic scenes. The first educational charts were made of wood, before rolling charts made from linen began to be manufactured. From the beginning of the 20th century, wallcharts were made entirely from pasteboard, which was a more durable material. In 1842, a law on compulsory school attendance was introduced in Sweden. The collection of wallcharts here at the Museum of Gothenburg is comprised of between 3000 and 3500 school wallcharts. The oldest date back to the 1840s and the most recent are from the 1950s. The majority have been acquired from the Gothenburg School Museum which was founded in 1909 and became part of the Museum of Gothenburg in 1993. All subjects are represented and the scenes show us how society has changed over this stretch of 100 years. The last Swedish school wallchart was printed in 1962.
1The March Across the Belts in 1658 The March Across the Belts is one of the most famous campaigns in Swedish war history. Under the command of Charles X Gustav, the Swedish army marched over the Little Belt and the Great Belt in Denmark to face the Danish army. January 1658 was unusually cold, meaning that the strait had frozen and could be passed, but there was still a great risk that the ice would break. The wallchart shows Charles X Gustav beside his horse to the left of the image. A dog leaps beside the king. In the centre of the image there is a rider on horseback and behind him is an army on foot. It is winter. The manoeuvre gave the Swedes an advantage in the war, despite the fact that two squadrons drowned during the march over the Little Belt. In February, the Swedish army threatened Copenhagen and the Danes were forced to flee to Roskilde, which gave Sweden Scania, Halland, Blekinge and Bohuslän. Images depicting this event tend to show the army marching in close and neat formations. In reality, it was important for the army to spread out as much as possible in order to distribute weight evenly and prevent the ice from breaking. Representations often opt to portray the Swedish military as disciplined and well organised and thereby suggest that this is the reason behind their success. From the series Swedish History in Pictures, 1867.
1The Museum of Gothenburg was born out of a merger between the collections of six different museums. One of these museums was the Gothenburg School Museum, which was managed by the Society for the Promotion of Public Education in the Diocese of Gothenburg up until 1991. When the School Museum first opened on Saturday 22 May 1909, its purpose was to showcase the best new pedagogical solutions – the latest schoolbooks, durable and comfortable school desks, practical map racks, or anything else that was new or interesting for schools. The idea came from the Museum of Gothenburg, which had opened its own school department back in 1862. This department was closed in 1894, but not before arousing an appetite among the Society’s members. Many were teachers or headmasters who appreciated the value of being able to examine and test out school materials before purchasing them. It was for this reason that the Society decided to open a school museum. The school museum was also popular with the manufacturers of textbooks and teaching materials. Publishing houses supplied the museum with free copies of new publications over many years. To begin with, the School Museum focused geography. Teaching in this subject naturally required the use of maps. Depictions of nature and the environment from different countries were also used, in addition to paintings or photographs that were printed as wallcharts. In 1911, about 2/3 of the collections were made up of school wallcharts. Many were rolling charts: i.e. paper mounted onto a soft fabric attached to a rod that the chart could be rolled up around. Today, however, the majority are med of paper mounted onto hardboard, which is a more durable solution that may be both hung up and laid out. Today, the school collection is more than 100 years old. It has been a long time since it was used solely to present new products. From as early as the 1950s, many manufacturers of teaching materials set up their own showrooms, and the museum began to receive fewer and fewer materials. Instead, the school museum became a museum in the true sense of the word by focusing on the now historical objects in its collection. The Society for the Promotion of Public Education in the Diocese of Gothenburg The society is a non-profit organisation which supports schools and education, founded in 1824 and modelled on an archetype in Stockholm. At this time, there was no law requiring that all children attend school. The majority learned what the church demanded, but no more. The aim of the Society was to help as many children as possible to receive an education. There was particular focus on the system of mutual instruction, which in 1824 was one of the cheaper forms of tuition. A school that used mutual instruction could have one teacher for hundreds of school children as some of the students also acted as support teachers. By the time compulsory primary education was introduced in 1842, mutual instruction had almost completely disappeared. The Society continued to support public education through a wide range of projects and people. Its most long-lasting initiative is likely the School Museum, which the Society ran up until 1990. The Gothenburg Municipality had long supported the museum financially, and in January 1991 it took over its administration. As a friend organisation to the school collection at the Museum of Gothenburg, the Society has provided assistance in arranging and registering the collection and it has contributed towards a number of exhibitions about school and education. In connection with the 100-year jubilee of the school collection in 2009, the Society also published about the School Museum and its work. In addition to the School Collection, the Society also support other educational activities. For example, they hold talks on a range of subjects at their annual meetings. The association is open to anyone who is interested – please contact the Society’s board for more information.
1The Stockholm Bloodbath 1520 On 8 and 9 November 1520 the events now known as the Stockholm Bloodbath took place. In the years before, there were power struggles between the church and the nobility in Sweden, and between ruling parties in Sweden and Denmark. Following a battle in January, the Danish King Christian II was crowned as the king of Sweden as well. Simultaneously, many of the most powerful Swedes were accused of heresy and disloyalty to the new king. This resulted in many of them being imprisoned and executed, despite the king’s promises that the past would be forgotten. The wallchart shows a dramatic scene. The sword is raised and one of the bishops is about to be decapitated. The drama is heightened by the fact that dead bodies lie on the floor, even if history tells us that the bishops were the first to be killed. Many members of the ruling elite were killed in the Stockholm Bloodbath. That could perhaps be what made it possible for the young Gustav Vasa to later step forward and become king? His father and two uncles were decapitated, and his mother and three sisters were imprisoned. This event is central to understanding what happened later and to the story of Gustav Vasa. From the series Swedish History in Pictures, 1867.
1The Uppsala Synod in 1593 was the culmination of events over many years. Gustav Vasa had begun the reformation of the church in Sweden. Duke Charles and many others were concerned that the king-to-be, Sigismund (who was Catholic), would change the Protestant faith that Sweden had at the time. It was for that reason that Duke Charles called the Synod. Here, it was decided that all other Christian doctrines would be forbidden, that only persons of the Lutheran creed would be able to hold office in the country and that the king would be the protector of the church. Sigismund would confirm the decision at his coronation and would not be allowed to make any changes. In many ways, the decision is fundamental to the church’s role in Sweden over many hundreds of years to come. The wallchart shows a photographed black and white record of the event. The record ends with signatures and around forty wax emblems that hang on the end of ribbons. In schools, this scene may have had several purposes. The wallchart shows what a document written on parchment looks like. The students would have got the chance to read old handwriting. The document also has significant symbolic value in the story of how Sweden became Protestant. The document both attests to the decision and answers the question of when it happened. The wallchart was manufactured at some point between 1920 and 1923. The original was written on parchment and is stored at the National Archives in a special silver case.
1The wallchart shows a road that ends at a few buildings. There are people, a carriage and a rider standing in front of the houses. Travellers are offered food and drink by two women. In accordance with a law from 1280, the act of forcing oneself into the home of another for shelter (våldsgästning) was forbidden. Each town was therefore required to set up a specific place, an inn, where travellers could sleep, eat and drink in exchange for money. In 1649 it was decided that every inn should have a floor for noblemen, another one for “other honourable persons” and a third for “common company”. The owners often charged high prices, but travellers were also able to give their opinions in a journal which would be sent to the authorities each month. Artist: Lennart Krook. From the series Images of Sweden Across Time, 1947.
1The wallchart shows Count Per Brahe who has just come ashore on Visingsö Island, which he owns. Brahe was the largest private land owner of the time, with land in East Gothland and West Gothland, and also in Småland, Uppland and Finland. The text explains that: “Count Per, who owns all of the land in the southern part of Lake Vättern, with the exception of the city of Jönköping, arrives at Visingsö Island from his hometown of Gränna, where he is greeted by the burghers with a military parade and humble bows from the mayor and councilmen.” Artist: Olle Hjortzberg. Signed 1935. From the series Historical Wallcharts.
1The wallchart shows men equipped with crossbows, bearded axes and maces ready to fight together with Gustav Vasa against the king of Sweden, the Danish Christian II. In the background there is a typical Dalecarlian settlement. The text describes “the beautiful granaries and other houses in the small kingdom, isolated from the outside world, where the farmers, the stubborn and the fiercely independent could happily feel like kings over their own little part of the country.” The depictions of weapons are based on sketches made by a German solider during the siege of Älvsborg in 1502, and which became known to researchers in 1930. Artist: Olle Hjortzberg. Signed 1935. From the series Historical Wallcharts.
1The wallchart shows two soldiers from the Thirty Year War (1618–1648). The one on the right is a cuirassier and the one on the left is a musketeer. Cuirassiers were heavily armoured riders, armed with a rapier and a pistol. Musketeers are best known as the bodyguards of French kings, but were a part of the infantry here. The musket, a predecessor of the modern-day rifle, could have weighed up to as much as 11 kg. When preparing to shoot, the soldier would often take the help of a so-called forquette which would be stuck down into the ground so that the weapon’s barrel could rest on its top. The wallchart series was produced by a history teacher and an art teacher at the Högre Realläroverk school in Gothenburg. Artist: Lauritz Baltzer From the series General History Wallcharts, 1885.
1This part of the exhibition is about the image of history as seen in wall charts of Swedish 16th and 17th century kings and queens.
1This wall chart depicts Stockholm Harbour. Two ships sit at a wharf full of people carrying, selling and buying goods. In the image you can see several porters, a city policeman in red uniform with puffy sleeves, a jester, a wealthy businessman and a so-called fishwife (a woman who sells fish). Artist: Olle Hjortzberg. From the series Historical wallcharts.
1When the Gothenburg School Museum opened for visitors on 22th of May 1909, it was situated in former shop premises on Linnégatan 72, which can be seen front right in the picture. The Museum's guard, Jeanna Andersson, lived in the inner room. She was responsible for cleaning and heating the premises, received mail and visitors after opening hours and kept watch. In return she go rent-free accommodation, firewood and 50 SEK per year. The guard post was discontinued in 1920, when the museum had to move as the Swedish Mail was taking over the premises.
1Work on a farmstead in the Vasa era The wallchart shows a farmstead where one man chops firewood while another is threshing in the barn. In the background, there are fields divided up unto different sections. Another man is ploughing with the help of two oxen. The text explains that the most important aspect of this image is the division of the fields. This was done so that: “each farmer in the village would have his own piece of every patch, and the land was divided in a way that meant ploughing could be undertaken with the lowest number of turns.” Text: Arthur Nordén Artist: Olle Hjortzberg. Signed 1935. From the series Historical Wallcharts.