500 years ago, Gustav Vasa was elected king of Sweden, in the aftermath of the Stockholm Bloodbath when a large part of the Swedish nobility was killed.

"There are several reasons why Gustav is elected king. On the one hand, he has the right background, but above all, almost all competition is gone. All the heads of the great noble families were beheaded in the carnage," says Associate Professor Anna Maria Forssberg at the Vasa Museum.

From poor to rich

Gustav Vasa incurred large debts in order to take over the throne. But by the end of his life, he was wealthy, partly because he confiscated much from the Catholic Church in connection with the Reformation.

In connection with the Reformation, Gustav Vasa decided that the Bible should be translated from Latin into Swedish.

"Wants to take control of the language of the church"

"Gustav is not content to take control of the church's properties. He also wants to take control of the language of the church. He decides that the Bible should be translated into a language that the people understand," says Bo Eriksson, associate professor of history.

When the new Swedish Bible spread across the country, the text became a spelling model for the Swedish written language. It is in this, the very first Swedish version of the Bible, that the letters Å, Ä and Ö were established.