June 17 In Swedish History
1397: Erik av Pommern (Eric of Pomerania) is crowned king over Denmark and Sweden. Erik was born in 1382 in Rügenwalde (today’s Darlowo in Poland) as the son of Duke Wratislaw VII of Pomerania and Mary of Mecklenburg-Schwerin. He was the first King of the Nordic Kalmar Union (thus, also including Norway where he was crowned already in 1389), succeeding his adoptive mother Margaret I of Denmark. From contemporary sources, he appears as intelligent, visionary, energetic and of strong character. That Erik was also a charming and well-spoken man of the world was shown by a great European tour of the 1420s. Negatively, he seems to have had a hot temper, a lack of diplomatic sense, and an obstinacy that bordered on mulishness. For ten years Erik lived on Gotland and made his living by piracy against the merchant trade in the Baltic. Eventually he returned to Pomerania, where he died in 1459.