Svante Nilsson (regent of Sweden)

Svante Nilsson ( c. 1460 – 2 January 1512) was a Swedish nobleman and regent of Sweden from 1504 – 2 January 1512. He was the father of Sten Sture the Younger (1493–1520) who later served as regent of Sweden, during the era of the Kalmar Union.


Svante was born at Penningby Castle (Penningby slott) at Norrtälje in Uppland. He was born around 1460 as the son of Nils Bosson (ca 1426-1494) of the family Natt och Dag. His mother was Birgitta Tordsdotter Bonde (1439-1494) of the Sture family. He never himself used the surname Sture. His son later took the maternal surname due of its prestige and tradition of preserving the Swedish independence.

He became a member of the Privy Council of Sweden no later than 1482, but acted in opposition to his distant kinsman Sten Sture the Elder, going as far as supporting King John of Denmark. Unwillingly he then switched sides and supported Sten Sture in overthrowing the king. When Sten Sture died in 1503, Svante became head of state in January 1504. His resignation was demanded by the Privy Council of Sweden in the summer of 1511, on the grounds that he had neglected the defense on the occasion of Danish ravages. In practice he remained in power until his death at Arboga on 2 January 1512. Svante Nilsson was buried in Västerås Cathedral.

His first marriage in 1486 was with Iliana Gisladotter Gädda. Through this marriage he was the father of future statesman and regent of Sweden, Sten Sture the Younger (1493–1520). He married a second time in 1504 with Mette Dyre (c. 1465-before 1533).

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