Betty Ehrenborg

Betty Ehrenborg, married name Posse af Säby (22 July 1818 – 22 July 1880), was a Swedish writer, psalm writer and pedagogue. She is regarded as the founder of the Swedish Sunday school.

Betty Ehrenborg
Betty Ehrenborg-Posse.png
Betty Ehrenborg in January 1860
Born22 July 1818 Edit this on Wikidata
Medelplana parish Edit this on Wikidata
Died22 July 1880 Edit this on Wikidata (aged 62)
Södertälje stadsförsamling Edit this on Wikidata
OccupationWriter, translator, teacher Edit this on Wikidata
Spouse(s)Johan August Posse Edit this on Wikidata


Katarina Elisabeth (nicknamed Betty) Ehrenborg was the daughter of the noble Parliamentary Ombudsman Casper Ehrenborg and the writer Anna Fredrica Carlqvist. She was raised at the family estate Råbäck at Kinnekulle. Her sister Maria Ulrika (Ulla) Ehrenborg was the wife of Bishop Ebbe Gustaf Bring.[1]

In 1842, she and her mother moved to Uppsala to be near her brother, Richard, who studied at Uppsala University. In Uppsala, she attended several of the university lectures, though she was merely a member of the civil audience and not a student, and she became a part of the Uppsala intellectual life of the 1840s.

She worked as a governess in 1846–1848. She got to know Swedish Baptist pioneer brothers Gustaf Palmquist and Per Palmqvist in 1851.[2] Ehrenborg traveled to England around that time, possibly with the brothers, and learned about the Sunday school programs there.[3] While in England she stayed with Mathilda Foy, who introduced her to Carl Olof Rosenius' teachings.[4] In 1852–1853, she studied at the British and Foreign school in London. She remained in contact with the Palmqvist brothers and they encouraged her to publish "Andeliga sånger för barn och ungdom. Med melodier".[2] After returning to Sweden, she established a Sunday school in 1854 with 13 mostly free-church and Baptist students.[4] She founded and managed a Sunday school on her brother's estate in 1855–1856. Her Sunday school moved to Bethlehem Church in 1873.

In 1854, she co-founded the Fruntimmersällskapet för fångars förbättring in Stockholm with Foy, writer Fredrika Bremer, deaconess Maria Cederschiöld, and Emilia Elmblad, founder of the Stockholm home for reformed prostitutes.[5]

In 1863, she married Baron Johan August Posse.

She died in Södertälje in 1880.[6]



  1. ^ Rodhe, B. "Ebbe Gustaf Bring". Svenskt Biografiskt Lexikon (in Swedish). Retrieved 27 April 2022.
  2. ^ a b "Svenska män och kvinnor". (in Swedish). p. 161. Retrieved 11 April 2022.
  3. ^ McFarland, John Thomas; Winchester, Benjamin S. (1915). The encyclopedia of Sunday schools and religious education; giving a world-wide view of the history and progress of the Sunday school and the development of religious education. T. Nelson & sons. p. 1061. About 1850, Mr. Per Palmqvist and Miss Betty Ehrenborg visited England and upon their return to Stockholm they organized Sunday schools according to the English form. From this small beginning Sunday-school work has grown in magnitude...
  4. ^ a b Norström, Per (1 November 1930). "Söndagsskolans historia". Evangeliskt vittnesbörd (in Swedish). No. 21. p. 163. Retrieved 1 May 2022.
  5. ^ Elisabeth Christiansson: ”Först och framför allt själen” Diakonins tankevärld omkring år 1850. Sköndalsinstitutet 2003
  6. ^ "Catharina Elisabet (Betty) Ehrenborg-Posse". Svenskt kvinnobiografiskt lexikon (in Swedish). Retrieved 11 April 2022.


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