from 03 to 04 December 2014
Queen Christina of Sweden, the European | conference and concert

A cooperation project between Austria, France, Italy & Sweden, with the support of the European Union and under the patronage of Princess Christina Mrs Magnuson.

Christina of Sweden abdicates on 6 June 1654. She left her country, heading to Rome. Alexander VII gives her baptism and hosts her in the Palazzo Farnese. She travels a lot. Mazarin in Paris welcomes her in the same palace where three centuries later,  Fondation Maison des Sciences de l'Homme honors the one who could become the emblematic figure of Europe culture,  through the 3 December event.

The project

"Christina of Sweden, the European" was initiated by Philippe Beaussant of the French Academy and Mats Liljefors, director of Royal Festivals in Stockholm. Administered by the Foundation Queen Christina - the European Culture Initiative, it aims, in the process of European integration, at developping a reflection on European culture and identification of a unifying symbol that everyone can recognizes and anchors his values and identity in a spirit of tolerance and peace.

The initial project takes place in the four partner countries between 2014 and 2015. It will then continue with Spain, Germany and Poland.

In France, Fondation Maison des Sciences de l'Homme  convened a scientific advisory around Claude Imbert; it is responsible for promoting the project and disseminate a reflection on European cultural identity in academic and research institutions.

Project coordinator: Denis Viart


The French stage of the European tour will take place on 3  December 2014 in Paris.

Wednesday, December 3rd at 17h | National Institute of History of Art

17h Conference: Christine, philosopher and philanthropist

Opening: Michel Spain (Director of Cultural Transfers UMR, CNRS and Paris Ens PBUH) : Christine: The Future of a thought without borders

Christine and French intellectual circles

Kambouchner Denis (Paris I University): The invitation to Descartes
Jean-Charles Darmon (Ens and CNRS): Christine meets French Libertins
Claude Imbert (Ens): Christine Pascal sends his calculator

Christine: a European policy

Jean-Claude Milner (philosopher, linguist): Christine and the Peace of Westphalia
Yves Saint-Geours (Ambassador, Director General of Administration, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development): The Treaty of Westphalia
Philippe Beaussant (French Academy) presents his book on musical culture and patronage of Christine, “Queen Christina and music” (Fayard)

Cocktail 6:30 p.m.

7:10 p.m. The Instrumental Ensemble Concert La Badinerie-La Tempesta

Edited by Mats Liljefors (Festivals Royal Stockholm)

Patrick Bismuth, solo violin, Saskia Lethiec, violin, Julie Friez, violin, viola, Bernard Vandenbroucque, cello, Jean-Christophe Deleforge, violin, Claire Devilleneuve, recorder and William Spoons, oboe.

Marie Arnet, soprano, Amanda Liljefors, mezzo soprano.


Anonymous Love constant, ballet suite (created in Stockholm in 1646)

Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643) Ohimè ch'io cado

Jean-Philippe Rameau (1683-1764) Flow my tears, extract Zaïs

Alessandro Stradella (1639-1682) La forza delle stelle

Girolamo Frescobaldi (1583-1643) Cosi mi disprezzate

Luigi Rossi (1597-1653) The Lyra Orfeo, passacaglia (S)

Arcangelo Corelli (1653-1718) Concerto grosso, Op 6: 4

Thursday, December 4 at 18h | Swedish Cultural Center

Conférence et projection : La Reine Christine à l'écran

L'ensemble du programme est consultable sur le site

Promote a culture of Europe

Europe is ravaged by conflict when Christina of Sweden attends, at the age of six, the funeral of her father, Gustavus Vasa, who was killed in Germany on the battlefield while commanding troops of Protestant against Catholics. Christine is the only heir to the throne of Sweden.

The young woman is considered as the future king and is distinguished by her appetite for knowledge, her mastery of foreign languages (she speaks eight),  her knowledge in philosophy, physics, music, etc. Young sovereign, she imposes the signature of the Treaty of Westphalia that ended the Thirty Years War. She built hospitals, schools, universities. At the Court of Stockholm, she invites scientists, philosophers, men of letters.

And suddenly, at the top of power and fame, in 1654, Christine causes a shock among her subjects and throughout Europe by her abdication, exile abroad and a year later, her conversion to Catholicism.

In 1655, Christine begins a journey across Europe. In Hamburg, Amsterdam, Brussels, Innsbruck and Spoleto, and throughout her course, she is hailed as the queen of peace, tolerance and unity, even, sometimes, as a saint.

Her life was dedicated to the highest degree, in arts, science and philosophy. Author of several books and of an important diplomatic correspondence, she founded academies in the cities where she was staying, surrounding herself with musicians and artists while continuing to nurture political ambitions. At her death Pope reserved her a funeral worthy of a sovereign. She is buried in St. Peter's Basilica in Rome.


Localisation : Institut national d'Histoire de l'Art, 2 rue Vivienne, Paris 2e & Centre culturel suédois, 11 rue Payenne, Paris 3e
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