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Christina’s pride and royal position made it impossible for her to submit to anyone, with the exception of a beautiful young noblewoman named Ebba Sparre, who played Venus in the magnificent court ballets Christina loved. The queen was openly passionate toward her and, after she left Sweden, revealed herself more freely. "I am condemned forever to love and adore you,“ she wrote Ebba, and, from Italy in 1657: "It is now twelve years since I had the good fortune to be loved by you… I belong to you in a way that makes it impossible for you to reject me. Only when my life ends shall I cease to love you.”

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