Svenskt kvinnobiografiskt lexikon

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Anna Margareta Svantesdotter (Sture)


Countess, last of the Sture family

Anna Margareta Svantesdotter (Sture) was a Swedish countess who belonged to the social elite of the early seventeenth-century Sweden. She was the last person to bear the name of Sture.

As a member of the powerful Sture family Anna Svantesdotter was born into the very top echelon of Swedish society. However, her parents Ebba Leijonhufvud and Svante Sture were unusual for their time and social class. Anna Svantesdotter was an only child and her father – who had studied at the universities of Rostock, Frankfurt-an-der-Oder, and at Orléans – died when she was barely a year old. He was only 29 years old himself at the time of his death and thus had not had time to make a lasting impact on Swedish politics. Despite this, Anna Svantesdotter’s future as the sole inheritor of the Sture family’s many properties was assured. Following her marriage to Axel Oxenstierna’s son, Johan, she further ensured her position as a member at the very top of the Swedish political establishment. Nothing is known of Anna Svantesdotter’s childhood. It has been claimed that she served at the royal court, which is likely given her family name, but the claim has not been verified. Nevertheless, according to Anna Svantesdotter’s largely posthumous appearances in the records, she seems to have served as a major pawn in the property and prestige power games of her day.

Anna Svantesdotter’s life was, just as her father’s had been, a short one. Following a period of illness she died, aged just 31, in Germany in 1646. Anna Svantesdotter had requested to be buried in the Oxenstierna family burial ground at Jäder church but her mother preferred her daughter to be buried in the Sture family grave in Uppsala. As Anna Svantesdotter had not had any children her inheritance went to her mother, who in turn willed her estate to her son-in-law. This led to an inheritance dispute which eventually ended with portions of the estate going to Ebba Brahe and Ebba Grip, who were relatives. With Anna Svantesdotter’s death the Sture family line was extinguished.

Maria Sjöberg
(Translated by Alexia Grosjean)

Published 2020-03-02

You are welcome to cite this article but always provide the author’s name as follows:

Anna Margareta Svantesdotter (Sture),, Svenskt kvinnobiografiskt lexikon (article by Maria Sjöberg), retrieved 2024-06-22.

Family Relationships

Civil Status: Married
  • Mother: Ebba Leijonhufvud
  • Father: Svante Sture
  • Husband: Johan Oxenstierna (Axelsson) af Södermöre


  • Privatundervisning i hemmet, : Ståndsmässig uppfostran


  • Profession: Hovdam


  • Relative: Ebba Brahe
  • Relative: Ebba Grip


  • Eriksson, Bo, Sturarna: makten, morden, missdåden, Norstedts, [Stockholm], 2017

  • Norrhem, Svante, Kvinnor vid maktens sida: 1632-1772, Nordic Academic Press, Lund, 2007

  • Wetterberg, Gunnar, Kanslern: Axel Oxenstierna i sin tid, Atlantis, Stockholm, 2002