Elsa Eschelsson


Lawyer, Sweden's first female Juris Doctor.

Elsa Eschelsson was born in a wealthy home in Norrköping in 1861. After the mother died, the five-year-old Elsa moved with her father to Stockholm.

Eschelsson was home schooled and learned, among other things, Latin, entirely on her own. In 1882 she graduated with high grades.

The studies continued in Uppsala and later Eschelsson became the first female doctor and associate professor of law. However, she had to fight hard to get posts, not least as a acting professor because that service could not yet be granted to a woman.

She participated in the creation of the formed Women's Association (1904) which seemed to women's right to hold higher government services.

The academic strife took a toll on her powers and after a supposed overdose of sleeping pills, Elsa Eschelsson died on March 10, 1911.

The funeral in Uppsala Cathedral was held by Professor Einar Billing who spoke of "the iniquity of this World".


Burial site: 0137-1550

Image description: Elsa Eschelsson, 1883. Photo: Heinrich Osti / UUB. [The image is cropped]
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