These statues, copying the great trinkspiel cups of the 17th century, were prominent centrepieces and talking points in noble European families. This model of King Gustavus Adolphus II of Sweden, copying the original by David Schwestermuller, Augsburg, circa 1645 (see Seling, vol. 2, pl. 587), now in the National Museum Stockholm, was probably made as a posthumous tribute to the Swedish King. Also known as The Lion of North, King Adolphus is credited with establishing Sweden as a major European power and is regarded as one of the great military commanders of all time. He led Sweden to military supremacy during the Thirty Years war, taking victory at the Battle of Breitenfeld in 1631, the first notable victory for the Protestant armies during the conflict. However, at the Battle of Lutzen in November 1632, King Adolphus was killed after becoming separated during a cavalry charge. He was the first and last Swedish leader to be bestowed the title Den Store or The Great and is considered a heroic figure in Swedish folklore.
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