Swedish nobleman, military officer and diplomat. Born 1755, died 1810. Son of Fredrik Axel von Fersen.
In his youth, von Fersen served in the French Army, including service in the American War of Independence. Later, he saw service in the Swedish Army, at the same time pursuing a career at court. In 1801, he became Sweden's marshal of the realm.
During the French Revolution, von Fersen was emissary from King Gustav III of Sweden to France's Louis XVI. He became a close confidant and favourite of the French king, and a great admirer of Marie Antoinette. It was he who arranged the ultimately failed escape attempt (the flight to Varennes) of the royal couple, in June 1791 - and he drove part of the way with them, disguised as a coachman.
His experiences in France left von Fersen an active opponent of the Revolution, and he seldom missed a chance to speak out against it and its attendant atrocities.
Unjustly considered an accomplice in the death of the Swedish royal heir, Karl August, Hans Axel von Fersen was murdered in 1810 by a Stockholm mob.