Karin Månsdotter was Queen of Sweden, having first been a mistress and then the wife of King Eric XIV of Sweden. In 1564, Karin Månsdotter was employed as a servant to the wife of the King's trusted court musician Gert Cantor, who held a tavern and a guest house in his home; Karin likely helped to serve the guests. She was also a maid to the King's sister, Princess Elizabeth, when she became mistress to the king in 1565.
Christina of Denmark, Duchess of Milan and later Duchess of Lorraine (1521-1590). Recently widowed, Christina famously refused the suit of Henry VIII when he was looking for his fourth wife; she supposedly said if she had two necks, then Henry would be welcome to one of them. After her second marriage, Christina served as regent of Lorraine from 1545-1552 during the minority of her son, Charles. She and her son laid claim to Denmark, Norway and Sweden.
Christina Gyllenstierna (1494/5 - January 1559) led an uprising in Sweden to overthrow the (effective) control of Sweden by a Danish king, Christian II. After her husband was killed in battle, she took command of the defense of Stockholm. Christina was eventually forced to surrender, but negotiated terms that provided a general amnesty to herself and everyone else involved in the uprising. Christina became a national symbol of Swedish patriotism.
Dyveke Sigbritsdatter (1490 - 1517). Dyveke was the mistress of Christian II of Denmark. She was Dutch, and became his mistress in either 1507 or 1509. Her mother, Sigbrit, acted as an adviser to the King and they two of them were greatly hated. Christian refused to end their relationship even after he married Isabella of Austria in 1515, and her brother demanded his mistress's removal. Rumors said her death in 1517 was by poison.
Portrait of Christina of Holstein-Gottorp (1573 - 1625). Christina was Queen of Sweden from 1604 until 1611, when her husband died. She was the second wife of Charles IX, and they had three children. She later prevented her son from marrying his mistress, Ebba Brahe.
Portrait of Gustav I (1496 - 1560). King of Sweden from 1523 until his death in 1560. He emerged as the winner in the Swedish War of Liberation. He was a supporter of the Swedish Reformation. He is known as the father of the nation of Sweden and is the first monarch of the House of Vasa. He married three times and had nine children.
Portrait of Eric XIV (1533 - 1577). King of Sweden from 1560 until 1568, when he was deposed. He showed signs of mental illness near the end of his reign, which is now believed to be schizophrenia. He was imprisoned after being deposed, and most likely poisoned.