Riksdag of the Estates (formally Swedish: Riksens ständer; informally
Swedish: Ståndsriksdagen) was the name used for the Estates of Sweden
when they were assembled. Until its dissolution in 1866, the
institution was the highest authority in
Sweden next to the King. It
was a Diet made up of the Four Estates, which historically were the
lines of division in Swedish society:
1 Important assemblies
2 Replaced by the new Riksdag
Riksdag in Finland
4 See also
Representatives of the four estates on a commemorative coin (reverse).
The House of Nobility, seat of the Swedish nobility.
The meeting at
Arboga in 1435 is usually considered to be the first
Riksdag, but there is no indication that the fourth estate, the
peasants, had been represented there.
The actual first meeting is likely the one that took place at Uppsala
in 1436 after the death of rebel leader Engelbrekt.
Riksdag in 1517, regent
Sten Sture the Younger
Sten Sture the Younger and the Privy
Council deposed archbishop Gustav Trolle.
Västerås in 1527
Lutheranism was adopted as the new state
religion instead of Roman Catholicism.
Arboga in 1561, the term
Riksdag was used for the first time.
Söderköping in 1595, duke Charles was elected regent of Sweden
instead of king Sigismund, who was a Catholic and the king of both
Sweden and Poland.
In 1612 the
Riksdag gave the nobility the privilege and right to hold
all higher offices of government, after successful lobbying by Axel
The first open conflict between the different estates happened in
Riksdag in 1680 a large scale reduction (a return of lands to
the Crown earlier granted to the nobility) was enacted, and Sweden
became an absolute monarchy.
In 1719, the
Riksdag elected Ulrika Eleonora as heir in place of her
older sister's son, and Ulrika Eleonora accepted a new constitution
restoring the powers of the Riksdag.
In 1809, the
Riksdag elected Charles XIII king after his nephew Gustav
IV Adolf had been deposed, and after the new king had accepted a new
constitution that ended Sweden's second Autocracy (1789–1809).
At the sessions in 1634, 1719, 1720, 1772 and 1809 new constitutions
Replaced by the new Riksdag
The constitution of 1809 divided the powers of government between the
monarch and the
Riksdag of the Estates, and after 1866 between the
monarch and the new Riksdag. In 1866 all the Estates voted in favor of
dissolution and at the same time to constitute a new assembly,
Sveriges Riksdag. The four former estates were abolished. The House of
Nobility (Swedish: Riddarhuset) remains as a quasi-official
representation of the Swedish nobility. The modern Centre Party which
grew out of the Swedish farmers' movement, could be construed as a
modern representation with a traditional bond to the Estate of the
Riksdag in Finland
Main article: Diet of Finland
Finnish War in 1809,
Sweden ceded its eastmost provinces
to the Russian Empire. Comprising much of present-day Finland, these
became a Grand Duchy under the Emperor, but the political institutions
were kept practically intact. The Finnish estates assembled in 1809 at
Porvoo to confirm the change in their allegiance. This Diet of Finland
followed the forms of the Swedish Riksdag, being the legislative body
of the new autonomous region. However, during the reigns of Alexander
I and Nicholas I it was not assembled and no new legislation was
enacted. The diet was next assembled by tsar Alexander II in 1863, due
to the need to modernize the laws. After this the Diet met regularly
until 1905, when it passed an act forming a new unicameral parliament.
That assembly has been Finland's legislative body since then. The
Finnish House of Nobility
Finnish House of Nobility (Finnish: Ritarihuone; Swedish: Riddarhuset)
carries on the tradition of the Estate of Nobility, but no new
families have been ennobled since 1906.
History of Sweden
History of Finland
History of the Riksdag
^ Eriksson, Bo (2007). Lützen 1632: ett ödesdigert beslut (in
Swedish) (New ed.). Stockholm: Norstedt. p. 47.
ISBN 9789172637900. LIBRIS