Seen today along the shore of Lake Mälaren, with pleasure craft docked not too far away, Gripsholm Castle looks pleasant and peaceful. But it is actually a massively constructed brick and stone fortification, built by King Gustav Vasa (founder of the Vasa dynasty) in the 16th century as a refuge for his family in case Stockholm was attacked.
This is not the first castle on the site; an earlier castle was built in the 13th century, and even older Viking fortifications found a home here. Scanned from a photographic print. © 1997 Lawrence I. Charters