(d. 1571, Kalmar)

General view

begun 1555
Kalmar Castle, Kalmar, Smaland

Located near the site of Kalmar's medieval harbour, Kalmar Slott (Kalmar Castle) has played a crucial part in Swedish history since its initial construction as a fortified tower in the 12th century.

The construction of the castle started with a defence tower in 12th century. The city of Kalmar was established in 13th century. Swedish king Magnus I Birgersson ordered to build more towers and a defence wall. In July 1397, one of the most important of medieval Scandinavian history events took place in the castle – the signing of the union of Kalmar.

The fortress was improved during the 16th century under the direction of King Gustav I Vasa (reg 1523-60) and his sons King Erik XIV (reg 1560-68) and King John III (reg 1568-92), who turned the medieval fortress into a castle fit for a Renaissance king. The German architect Jakob Richter was charged with the reconstruction in 1555.

King Erik, was focused mainly on castle's interiors and smaller buildings, situated around the castle, designed for recreation and relaxed time. John III ordered to build three-storey warehouse, castle dwell in 1579 and castle chapel in 1592.

Kalmar Castle suffered heavy damage during the Kalmar War of 1611-13 and was badly damaged by a fire in 1642. Repairs were begun but from the end of the seventeenth century the castle was allowed to fall into disrepair. It was restored from the 1880s onward.