Sophie von Knorring

1797 - 1848


Sophie von Knorring was of noble rank, educated accordingly, married a baron, had a daughter, and made her debut anonymously in 1834 with the controversial novel Cousinerna, which was considered to be immoral. As with most of her books, she writes about life among the nobility; however, her theme – female erotic love in contrast to male double moral standards – is one of general female psychological interest.

Sophie von Knorring criticises family pride and takes the side of the woman, even siding with the people in Torparen och hans omgifning (1843; Eng. tr. The Peasant and his Landlord). This novel, which was dubbed Sweden’s first novel of rustic life, can also be read as a contribution to the ‘It can be done’-gender debate about marriage and open marital relations. Sophie von Knorring’s gracious style is European-influenced and reaches its zenith in her small masterpiece Illusionerna of 1836.