Beata Sparre was born in 1662. She was the daughter of Axel Carlssson Sparre, privy councillor and governor general in Stockholm, and his second wife Beata Stenbock, who held the courtly position of Mistress-of-the-robes. Beata Sparre was one of 15 children, of which 13 survived into adulthood. Perhaps the extended size of the family explains why some were described as poor. Four of Beata Sparre’s sisters followed in their mother’s footsteps and entered into royal service at the court. Three of them married, but Beata Sparre remained unmarried and stayed in royal service almost until her death.
Beata Sparre is a good example of how women were able to use their influence both on their relatives’ behalf and on their own behalf. For example, Beata Sparre and her sisters were able to appeal directly to the king when their brother Axel Sparre was condemned to death in 1688 and have him pardoned. Beata Sparre was also one of the influential people at the Swedish court whom French diplomats highlighted as being an important and significant individual with whom to network. As thanks for this she was presented with a portrait of King Louis XIV which she was able to save from destruction in the 1697 fire at the Tre Kronor castle.
Beata Sparre was also able to convince Princess Ulrika Eleonora and Princess Hedvig Sofia to support her petition addressed to King Karl XII in 1703 seeking royal permission to take over a castle belonging to one of her cousins. Beata Sparre’s successful petition meant that in 1720, when she fell out of favour at the royal court, she was able to retire to the castle with a pension and see out her days there.
Beata Sparre died in 1724.