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Queen of Sweden Says Her Old Palatial Home is Haunted by Friendly Ghosts

Queen of Sweden Says Her Old Palatial Home is Haunted by Friendly Ghosts


Queen Silvia of Sweden has recently told the press that her home is haunted. The elaborate residence in question is Drottningholm Palace - a well preserved palace dating back to the 1600s. The royal said that the ghosts accompanying her family are friendly and the whole thing is exciting.

The Local SE reports that the queen made the statement regarding her ghostly companions in a documentary about Stockholm’s Drottningholm Palace. She also pondered the stories the “little friends” may have to share. With the long and fascinating history of Drottningholm Palace and its royal residents, there would likely be much to say.

Conversation at Drottningholm.

Conversation at Drottningholm. ( Public Domain )

The palace, officially known as The Royal Domain of Drottningholm, is located on an island in Lake Mälar in Stockholm. The first palace was built there in the late 16th century, when King Johan III had it made for his Consort, Queen Katarina Jagellonika. However, that building was destroyed in a fire in 1661.

Construction began on the current palace soon after, in 1662, by the architect Nikodemus Tessin the Elder. It was given an overarching French Baroque style, however many royals left their mark on the interior based on trends of their times. By 1766, the present palace was essentially complete.

Engraving of Drottningholm Palace from 1690-1710.

Engraving of Drottningholm Palace from 1690-1710. ( Public Domain )

In the 1980s King Karl XVI Gustav and Queen Silvia took up residence at the palace. By 1991, Drottningholm Palace made the UNESCO World Heritage List, for its “perfectly preserved theatre (built in 1766), Chinese pavilion and gardens.” UNESCO has called Drottningholm Palace “the finest example of an 18th-century north European royal residence inspired by the Palace of Versailles.”

The theater at Drottningholm Palace.

The theater at Drottningholm Palace. ( CC BY SA 4.0 )

Those who resided in the palace would have witnessed a multitude of events over the last few centuries; apart from the fires, royal festivities and dramas also took place within its walls. Political actions, scientific discussions , and the intrigues of everyday life would have kept those living there very busy.

Hedvig Eleonora's bedchamber at Drottningholm Palace.

Hedvig Eleonora's bedchamber at Drottningholm Palace. ( Public Domain )

The “unliving” that reside at the palace have added their own intrigues as well. Two of the ghosts allegedly found in the royal residence are the White Lady and the Grey Man. The White Lady specifically seems to appear to foretell a death in the palace. Legends of the Grey Man, on the other hand, appear to be almost as old as the palace itself. This phantom is said to have shown itself to all the kings who’ve lived in the palace so far, except King Carl Gustaf.

Moreover,   some suggest that these are not the only two spirits haunting the palace. Strange sounds such as banging or thumping noises, opening of doors, or moving of furniture in unoccupied rooms, and unexplained happenings or “feelings” have been noted throughout the palace by various people working or living there. Nothing has been mentioned however, of past monarchs wandering the halls.

Eastern view of Drottningholm Palace. (ca. 1740) By Johan Pasch and/or Guillaume Taraval.

Eastern view of Drottningholm Palace. (ca. 1740) By Johan Pasch and/or Guillaume Taraval. ( Public Domain )

Queen Silvia asserted that she has been in the presence and doesn’t fear the phantoms of the palace these days, in fact, she has unofficially invited others to experience their existence as well. She said :

“There’s a lot of history here. There are also little friends… the ghosts. They’re all very friendly, but you sometimes feel like you aren’t alone. Come and feel it for yourself, go around here when it is dark and the like.”

Queen Silvia of Sweden.

Queen Silvia of Sweden. ( Swedish Royal Court )

Princess Christina, King Carl XVI Gustaf’s sister, supports the queen’s opinion on the haunted palace by stating :

“Of course it is. There are ghosts in all old houses. Definitely. There’s a lot of energy in that house and it would be strange if it didn’t express itself in the form of sounds and shapes. In all old houses there are stories of ghosts.”

A young Princess Christina and her brother see a film in one of their rooms at Drottningholm Palace.

A young Princess Christina and her brother see a film in one of their rooms at Drottningholm Palace. ( Royal Court's image archive )

Those who are bold, and in the area, can visit the reception halls of Drottningholm Palace and possibly meet an otherworldly presence while marveling at the amazing decorations and architecture. With tours for individuals, groups, and theme visits for children already, who knows, perhaps ghost tours will soon be added as a visitor attraction?

A salon in the palace.

A salon in the palace. (Holger.Ellgaard/ CC BY SA 3.0

Top Image: Drottningholm Palace in winter. Source: Holger.Ellgaard/ CC BY SA 3.0

By Alicia McDermott

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