The Swedish Royal FamilyTheir Majesties King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden

History of the Royal FamilyThe Bernadotte Dynasty

  • King Carl XVI Gustaf was born April 30, 1946, to the then-heir to the throne, Crown Prince Gustaf Adolf and Princess Sibylla.
  • He has four sisters: Princesses Margaretha, Birgitta, Désirée, and Christina.
  • Prince Gustaf Adolf was killed in an air crash, making Prince Carl XVI Gustaf the Crown Prince.
  • Sept. 15, 1973- King Gustaf VI Adolf died, making Crown Prince Carl XVI Gustaf, then 27, the King.
  • King Carl XVI Gustaf chose his motto "For Sweden - in keeping with the times" to highlight his aim to meet the demands of a modern monarch made by society.
  • King Carl XVI Gustaf recently became a grandfather with the birth of HRH Princess Estelle, Duchess of Östergötland, on February 23, 2012, through the Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel.

The Royal Couple and Their Family

Swedish crest

The Crown Prince met Miss Silvia Sommerlath during the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, where she was serving as an interpreter and chief hostess.

Born in Heidelberg, Germany, on Dec. 23, 1943, she is the daughter of Walther Sommerlath and his wife, Alice. Miss Sommerlath graduated language school in 1969 with a degree in Spanish and soon after was employed at the Consulate of Argentina in Munich. Then, from 1971 to 1973, she worked as chief hostess for the Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games. In addition to Swedish and Spanish, she speaks German, English, French, and Portuguese.

On March 12, 1976, Miss Sommerlath and King Carl XVI Gustaf became engaged and were married June 19 of the same year at the Stockholm Cathedral, Storkyrkan.

Together, the royal couple have three children: Crown Princess Victoria, born July 14, 1977, Prince Carl Philip, born May 13, 1979, and Princess Madeleine, born June 10, 1982.