17 September 2014

german Houses: The Ducal House of Saxe-Altenburg



The Ducal House of Saxe-Altenburg

House of Wettin

Duchy of Saxe-Hildburghausen

Since 186 all member of the Ducal Family had the Titles Prince/Princess of Saxe-Altenburg, Duke/Duchess of Saxony with the style of Highness (HH).

When in 1680 the 7 sons of the late Duke Ernst I. of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg divided their from their father inherited Country his 6 son Ernst the founder and first Duke of Saxe-Hildburghausen. He received the offices and cities Hildburghausen, Heldburg and Eisfeld, as well as the Office Veilsdorf and half the office Schalkau. After a comparison with his brother Frederick, he received in 1683 in addition the Office Konigsberg from the possession of his brother Heinrich and after the death of his brother Albrecht in 1699, the office Sonnenfeld. To Albertina palace he had come with his brother Bernhard greatly in dispute and resigned in 1705 in comparison with Sonnenfeld. The country was enlarged in 1714 after the death of Henry of Römhild to the Office Behrungen, the Echtersche fief and spleen. In 1702 the country had been released from the "Nexus Gothanus" and Ernst received by then full sovereignity. Duke Ernst began in 1685 in Hildburghausen with cuilding of a Castle and an  associated garden was planted. Until the completion of residency in 1695, he had lived in the castles Eisfeld and Heldburg.  In 1710 the Duke approved under an urban expansion plan to build the new town with the settlement of French Huguenots families in Hildburghausen, who were expelled after the repeal of the Edict of Nantes in France and the seriousness endowed with special privileges. In the same year the Primogeniturordnung was confirmed in the Principality, the Ernst had determined in his will in 1703 by the emperor. Duke Ernst was in 1706 the kingdom vote that was come from the county of Henneberg, awarded at the Imperial Diet in Regensburg. In 1714 he founded a school in Hildburghausen and died the following year on "apoplexy". Ernst the tomb was buried in the royal crypt of Hildburghäuser Castle Church, 1925 transferred to the cemetery of HildburghausenBy establishing the new residence, to which also included the construction of the ducal summer and hunting palace Seidingstadt belonged, of the court and the government, but also by his costly campaigns and the maintenance of a body Regiment, began as his brothers heavy indebtedness of the Principality which also always greater control surveys could not be reduced. For the castle in Hildburghausen alone the extra taxes were increased from five to fourteen worden. Duke Ernst had begun his his military Service in 1675. As a captain of cavalry, he fought with his father in 1683 at the relief of Vienna, in 1685 while pursuing the retreating Turkish troops at Gran and in the conquest of Neuhäusel. Later Ernst stood in the Dutch service against Louis XIV. Colonel as he was involved in the conquest of Kaiserwerth and participated in the Battle of Fleurus.
Duke Ernst was married to Countess Sophie Henriette zu Waldeck. They had the following children:
  • Ernst Friedrich I., succeeded his father as Duke
  • Sophie Charlotte, died as child
  • Sophie Charlotte
  • Karl Wilhelm, died as child
  • Joseph Friedrich, Field Marshal, 1780-1787 Regent of Saxe-Hildburghausen, married (separated 1752) to Princess Anna Victoria of Savoy-Carignan
Duke Ernst died on 17.10.1715 and was succeeded by his oldest son who took over the government as Duke Ernst Friedrich I. As a result of completely inappropriate Court and military pomp with which he wanted as many German princelings Louis XIV. of France emulate, the country fell into serious financial difficulties. Because of the unbearable tax burden it had come in 1717 to open revolt in the country. Ernst Friedrich I. put in Lindenau at a Saline, just as the New Town in Hildburghausen. Here he left in 1723 build  a church for the French Reformed parish. Constantly in need of money, he sold tax and parts of the country, including the Geldernsche County Cuylenburg, his mother's heritage. The county was in 1720 sold for 800,000 florins to the States-General, but not to move to repay the debt burden, but the lavish palace garden with a channel. Also sold was in 1723, the Office Schalkau to the Duchy of Saxe-Meiningen. The sale was considered in the following custodial government of his wife as unlawful, which led to war with Saxe-Meiningen.
Duke Ernst Friedrich I. married in 1704 Countess Sophie Albertine zu Erbach-Erbach. They had the following children:


  • Ernst Ludwig Hollandinus, died as child
  • Sophie Amalia Elisdabeth, died as child
  • Ernst Ludwig Albrecht, died as child
  • Ernst Friedrich, who succeeded his father as Duke
  • Friedrich August, died as child
  • Ludwig Friedrich, married to Princess Christine Luise of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Plön
  • Elisabeth Albertine, married to Duke Karl zu Mecklenburg-Strelitz
  • Emanuel Friedrich Karl, died as child
  • Elisabeth Sophia, died as child
  • Georg Friedrich Wilhelm, died as child



When Duke Ernst Friedrich I.died on 09.08.1724 his oldest surviving son was still a minor so his widow  from 1724 to 1728 the guardianship. She is understood to halve by austerity measures the number of taxes now levied. The Young Duke Ernst Friedrich II. was educated at Jena, Geneva and Utrecht and undertook with his brother Ludwig Friedrich 1722 a trip to France, where he pasrticipated at the coronation King Louis XV.  Ernst Friedrich II. came in 1728 to the government and took over, despite the efforts of his mother, a still highly indebted state. In 1729 he had a lack of funds the school close illustrious, which Duke Ernst had founded in 1715. 1730 Jews were granted intercession on the Dowager Duchess a special grace protection letter, which she endowed with elevated privileges. Ernst Friedrich granted in 1732 Salzburg exiles the right to settle in the country. On a trip to the court of Emperor Karl VI. in Vienna, he was appointed to intercede his great uncle Joseph Fredrich in 1733 as imperial Obrist field sergeant. In 1743 he was commissioned by Elector Karl Theodor an infantry regiment as a lieutenant general. Emperor Karl VII. then appointed him to the General FeldzeugmeisterAlways ailing in body and mind he was helpless towards the problems in the Duchy. The debt of the country was now so high that all government revenues even more interest covered.

Duke Ernst Friedrich II. married in 1726 Countess Caroline zu ERbach-Fürstenau. They had 4 children toegether:

  • Ernst Friedrich III. , who succeeded his father as Duke
  • Albrecht, died young
  • Eugen, married to his niece Princess Karoline of Saxe-Hildburghausen
  • Amalie, married to Fürst Ludwig zu Hohenlohe-Neuenstein-Oehringen



After the death of Duke Ernst Friedrich II. in 1745 his oldest son Ernst Friedrich III. took over the reign but until 1748 he was under the guardianship of his mother. The usual grand tour he made with his brother Eugen. Already as a 17-year-old he was by Elector Karl Theodor granted of the Order of St. Hubert and 1746 by King Augustus III. of Poland  Poland the White Eagle. He was regarded as intelligent, talented, facing the arts and sciences, but especially as one of the most beautiful princes of his time. He donated the city again a library and acquired in 1748 the estate and castle slipways, that he left his uncle Ludwig Friedrich von Sachsen-Hildburghausen as appanage. In 1750 he left the old "Ballhaus" transform into a court theater, where he was playing for free. However, the operas listed in the original language aroused little interest in the residence residents. The Duke, who was sitting with his court alone in the theater, then went grumpy himself on surrounding fields and brought the farmers working there with the kind of violence to the performance. In 1755 was begun by the royal chamber president and former Planning Director Albrecht of Brandenburg Friedrich von Kesslau with the construction of the church orphanage, today's New Town Church. In the same year the Duke tried to process the Supreme Court against Saxe-Meiningen by half the Official Schalkau to accelerate, but the matter was finally settled until 1789. After they had found at Brattendorf Silver  Ernst Friedrich III. made in 1757 from the coinage prerogative use, but was involved in a lawsuit the Reich Treasury. The quality of the coins was so bad that they had to be melted down already turned black at delivery and againThe duke left the mint of his brother Eugene and turned from 1760 to Alchemy. He worked it himself and costly in the basement of the castle at various experiments to discover the "gold tincture" and the" Philosopher's Stone". The excessive wastefulness in court and exaggerated military pomp finally made ​​in 1769 highest points attention to the financial situation of the country. Emperor Joseph II. formed a debit Commission under directoration of Duchess Charlotte Amalie of Saxe-Meiningen, Prince Eugen of Saxoe-Hildburghausen and Prince Joseph Friedrich of Saxe-Hildburghausen, the great-uncle of the Duke, to investigate the claims of creditors and regulation of revenue and expenditure. The financial situation of the country was so disorganized that even a 35-year-long duration of this Commission, the conditions could not fully organize. The great fire of Hildburghausen on 19.08.1779 led the Duke finally to retreat to the hunting lodge Seidingstadt, where he died on 23.09.1780.
Duke eEnst Friedrich III. had married in 17490 princess Louise od Denmark and Norway, a daughter of King Christian VI. She died in 1756 after long illness. In 1757 he married again with Princess Christinae Sophie Charlotte of Brandenburg-Kulmbach who died in the same year in childbed. In 1758 he made a third marriage with Princess Ernestine Auguste of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach, a daughter of Duke Ernst Augst.
His children
From the first marriage:
  • Friederike Sophie Juliane Karoline, died as child
From the second marriage:
  • Friederike Sophie Marie Karoline, died as child
From the third marriage:

  • Sophie, married to Duke Franz of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld
  • Karoline, married to her uncle Pricne Eugen of Saxe-Hildburghausen
  • Friedrich, who succeeded his father as Duke




Duke Ernst Friedrich III.'s son and sucessor Friedrich had in 1779 went to Vienna  was introduced there by his great-uncle Prince Joseph Friedrich at the Court.  Since 1785 Imperial Royal Field sergeant, he was the successor in command of Infantry Regiment Nr. Urgroßoheims his 41The new Duke began his tenure under the  guardianship of Prince Joseph Friedrich, which lasted until 1787. His great-great uncle had significant influence on Friedrich and under his  intercession he married on 03.09.1785  in Hildburghausen Princess Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Streltiz, a  daughter of Duke Karl II. of Mecklenburg-Strelitz and sister of the future Queen Luise of Prussia. The far intellectually superior to him wife he treated soon cool and indifferent. After the death of Joseph Friedrich Duke Friedrich took on  04.01.1787 over the reign. One of his first acts was decided at the meeting of Unterrodach establishment of a customs union between him, Duke Georg I of Saxe-Meiningen and Duke Franz of Sachsen-Coburg-Saalfeld, which allowed free trade between countries. He then made ​​reforms in guild and poor and policing, road construction and medicine. He improved the school system and founded in 1795 by Ludwig Nonne the teaching seminar, in 1812 the illustrious school and an industrial school for the poor. After the declaration of war of Prussia and Austria to France in 1791, Freidrich supplied a contingent of troops which occupied the fortress Ehrenbreitstein. Until 1806 he was subject to the limitations of the imperial debit Commission, which had put the Duchy of Saxony-Hildburghausen because of the parlous financial policy of his father in 1769 under its receivership. Therefore Friedrich received from the revenues of the country only a reduced civil listFriedrich joined in 1806 the Confederation of the Rhine, so he had to take the rank of imperial field marshal lieutenant, he led since 1799, down in 1807. The Duke had to make in accordance with the requirements of the Confederation of the Rhine troops, the General Loison were assumed and were used in the siege of Kolberg. In the year 1809 150 Hildburghäuser General Rouger soldiers were placed under and fought in Tirol. Because of the bravery shown while the regimental commander of Egloff Stone was awarded the Legion of Honour. After the regiment had fought in Spain, returned in 1811 only 17 Hildburghäuser soldiers back. In 1815 Friedrich joined the German Confederation, under whose responsibility is it, according to the Final Act of Vienna, in collaboration with the Privy Karl Ernst Schmid, 1818 the country was a new basic constitution. The improved financial situation allowed the purchase of the manor Eishausen. 1816 Friedrich issued an edict guaranteed the increased freedom of movement with other German states. Under this upswing succeeded in reducing the national debt to 78,000 florins, which were offset in 1826 state income of 200,000 guilders. Duke Friedrich was considered popular and patriarchal affable. He persuaded his subjects always in the familiar "you" of, frequented taverns and workshops held every New Year's Day a speech from the balcony of the castle. His birthday was celebrated as a public holiday in the country. In his four-decade reign he signed only a death sentence.
Friedrich was seen often with significant physician Carl Hohnbaum As a result of the marriage of his daughter Therese with the Bavarian Crown Prince Ludwig in 1810, became Friedrich Knight of the Order of Hubertus, Bavarian Lieutenant General and owner of the 4th Line Infantry Regiment. Because of the necessary by the extinction of the House of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg with Friedrich IV. 1825 reorganization of the Ernestine duchies and decided as in the preliminary treaty to Bad Liebenstein 11.08.1826. leftt Duke Friedrich on 17.11.1826. 
1826, the Duchy of Saxony-Hildburghausen, which fell to Saxe-Meiningen and Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld. and reigned henceforth as Friedrich. I re-established the Duchy of Saxe-Altenburg, with the exception of the Office Camburg




Duchy of Saxe-Altenburg


Because ot the extinction of the line Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg with the last childless Duke Friedrich IV. and reorganization ot the Wettin Countries took place. In a preliminary treaty which was signed on 11.08.1826 it was decided that Saxe-Hildburghausen would go to Saxe.Meiningen and Friedrich would get the Duchy of Saxe-Altenburg. Duke Friedrich moved in at Altenburg on 23.11.1826. Since the residence was in a less good condition, Friedrich lived frequently at Castle Hummelshain and the restoration of the castle of Altenburg was started. On 14.09.830 Friedrich gave the country the town hall of Altenburg's promise for a first constitution after it had come to the residence to street fighting. The Constitution came into force on 23 April 1831. The Duke improved in his new country's infrastructure, picked up the Jagdfron and optimized management. He joined in 1833 the German customs and trade association for. A year later he died in Hummelshain. Since 1830 he had involved his eldest son Joseph into the Government.

Duke Friedroch and his wife Therese had everal children:

  • Friedrich, died as child
  • Charlotte, married to Prince Paul of Württemberg
  • Auguste, died as child
  • Joseph, who succeeded his father as Duke
  • Friederike, died as child
  • Therese, married to King Ludwig I. of Bavaria
  • Luise, married to Duke Wilhelm of Nassau
  • Franzu, died as child
  • Georg, who succeeded his brother Joseph as Duke
  • Friedrich
  • Maximilian, died as child
  • Eduard, married first to Princess Amalie of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen, second to Princess Luise Reuß zu Greiz
    from the first marriage:
    • Therese, married to Prince August of Sweden, Duke of Dalarna
    • Antoinette, married to Duke Friedrich I. of Anhalt
    • Ludwig, died as child
    • Johann, died as child
    from the second marriage:
    • Albert, married first to Princess Marie of Prussia, second to Duchess Helene zu Mecklenburg
      from the first marriage:
      • Olga Elisabeth, married to Count Carl Friedrich of Pückler-Burghauss
      • Marie, married (later divorced) to Prince Heinrich XXXV. Reußb zu Köstritz
    • Marie, married to Fürst Karl Günther of Schwarzburg-Sondershausen


After the death of Duke Friedrich on 29.09.1834 his oldest son Josep became new Duke of Saxe-Altenburg. Together with his  brother Georg he had  in 1814 fought with the allies against France. Later, he was a major general in Saxony services. In 1830 he became co-regent of his father. On behalf of his father, he renewed in 1833 with the Dukes Ernst I of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and Bernhard II. of Saxe-Meiningen, the Ducal Saxe-Ernestine House Order. He led in Altenburg from several buildings, including the royal stables, a palace guard, which he allowed to grow in a similar style to the Castle Church and in 1841 he placed in the cemetery of Altenburg a new royal crypt at. 1839, the French castle park was transformed into an English landscape garden. The restoration was begun under his father, the Residence Castle  was continued under Joseph.  Duke Joseph reigned conservative and reform reluctantly. The parliament meetings were not public and it was still compulsory guild, which inhibited trade and industry. Joseph favored ultra religious directions and called 1848 Empire troops into the country, because demands for a Free State were loud. He eventually had to resign from the government, which was outstanding in the Thuringian States during the bourgeois revolution in 1848. On 30.11.1848, two days after the death of his wife, he renounced because in favor of his brother George to the throneAfter his abdication Joseph lived mainly at Schloss Fröhliche Wiederkunft  in Wolfersdorf. He restored it thoroughly and saved it from further decay. Joseph supported artistic and scientific projects. At his own expense he had some paintings in the Hall of Altenburg restore.
Duke Joseph married on 24.04.1818 Duchess Amalie of Württemberg, a daughter of Duke Ludwig. They had 6 daughters
  • Marie, married to King Georg V. of Hannover
  • Pauline, died as child
  • Therese
  • Elisabeth, married to Grand Duke Peter II. of Oldenburg
  • Alexandra orthodox Alexandra Iosiovna, married to Grand Duke Konstantinj Nikolaievitch of Russia
  • Luise, died as child

After the abdication of Duke Joseph his younger borhter Georg succeeded his as Duke as Duke Joseph had no sons. During his reign Duke Georg  reformed the financial administration, founded the "George club" to promote arts and crafts and designed the Eisenberger castle on. 1850 Georg founded a loan fund for poor artisans and gave their own funds for poor relief from, which earned him the name of George the Good. In 1850 he received the solemn Altenburger battalion of his brother Edward, who had victoriously fought war in Schleswig-Holstein. Already on 28.05,.1853 he passed  the government passed because of health problems in the hands of his son Ernst and died on 03.08.  at the hunting lodge Hummelshain.
Duke Georg married in 1825 Duchess Marie zu Mecklenburg, a daughter of Hereditary Grand Friedrich Ludwig of Mecklenburg-Schwerin.
They had 3 sons:
  • Ernst, who succeeded his father as Duke
  • Albrecht,who died as child 
  • Moritz, married to Princess Auguste of Saxe-Meiningen
    • Maria Anna, married to Fürst Georg zu Schaumburg-Lippe
    • Elisabeth, orthodox Jelisaveta Mavrikievna, married to Grand Duke Konstantin Konstantinovitch of Russia
    • Margarete, died young
    • Ernst, who succeeded his uncle, Duke Ernst I. as Duke
    • Luise married (later divorced) to Duke Eduard of Anhalt



Duke Georg was succeeded by his oldest son Ernst who had already taken over the govern
ment on 28.05.1853. The new  Duke had begun  began his military training in Breslau  in Breslau and entered the Prussian service thereafter. While visiting his cousin Alexandra, he met Tsar Alexander II., with whom he became friends. After he had finally completed his education at the University of Leipzig, the Prince Premier Lieutenant in the Prussian 1st Guards Regiment of Foot in Potsdam. Shortly after his appointment as Major Ernst married on 28.04.1853 in Dessau Ptrincess Agnes of Anhalt-Dessau, a daughter of Duke Leopold IV. Duke Ernst I. politically came hardly in appearance, loved hunting, but was for the social problems of the country very open. He simplified the state administration and Altenburg developed under his government into a major industrial city. In 1868 he governed in a border demarcation treaty with the Principality of Reuss Younger Line. In 1864 he was restored by the City Council in Altenburg, 1871, the Court Theatre, and two years later opened the National Museum. On 29 April 1873, the ownership of the Dukes and the state were redefined in a domain Fideikommiss. Of Tsar Alexander II., He received on a trip to St. Petersburg in 1873, the ownership over the 50th Infantry Regiment "Bialystok". The Duke visited after the Turkey and Austria-Hungary. Ernst I. adopted on 09.02.1855, a military law that fundamented the close connection to Prussia. A week later he was appointed Prussian Major General à la suite, and four years later, to lieutenant general. On 30.03.1862, he joined a military convention with Berlin and one year later he particpiafed not at the Frankfurt Princesday. At the outbreak of the German war between Prussia and Austria, he concluded, despite the sympathy of many Wettins for Austria on 21.06.1866 a military alliance with Prussia. He recognized the fact, among other things, the criteria established by Prussia draft for the new German order and received in return for the guarantee of the independence and integrity of its territory. The required Altenburger quota, however, was not involved in hostilities. 1866 came Saxe-Altenburg in the North German Confederation and the military system was reformed on the Prussian model.  According to the Federal Council's mobilization of the army for the war against France on 15.07.1870, traveled Duke Ernst I. two days later to Berlin to Wilhelm I to explain his allegiance. He moved in with Grand Duke Friedrich Franz II. ofMecklenburg-Schwerin as commander of the 17th and 22nd Division against France. He was also a participant of the imperial proclamation in Versailles on 18.01.1871The Duke married in 1873 his only daughter to the Prussian Prince Albrecht. The Ernst revered emperor Wilhelm I. He erected a monument in Altenburg in 1891. Like its predecessor and grandfather Duke  Friedrich he liked to stay on the hunting lodge Hummelshain which  after a fire in 1872, was rebuilt in neo-renaissance style. 1880-1885.
Duke Ernst I. and Duchess Anges had 2 children:
  • Marie, married to Prince Albrecht of Prussia
  • Georg, died as child

After an unusually long reign of 55 years Duke Ernst I. died on 07.02.1908. As his only son Georg had died as child he was succeeded by his nephew Ernst, the brother of his son Moritz who had died a year before him. The new Duke Ernst II. had after finishing School, studied  at the Académie de Lausanne, where he participated as a guest in the events of the Société d'Étudiants Germania Lausanne. From 1891 to 1892 he studied at the University of Jena for two semesters science and political science, history and philosophy. There he became a member of the Corps Franconia Jena. In 1892 he joined the University of Heidelberg. 1893 visited Prince the war school in Kassel and put 1894 in the Berlin officer exam from. In September 1894 he joined as a lieutenant in the Royal Prussian 1st Guards Regiment on foot a. From 1903-1905  served in the general staff and participated in several military exercises. Immediately after the death of his uncle, Duke Ernst I, he took over as Duke Ernst II the government in the Duchy of Saxe-Altenburg. At the same time he was head of the Thuringian Infantry Regiment. 153 and the Saxon Jägerbataillions no. 12 in Freiberg. In the same year he was awarded the High Order of the Black Eagle by Emperor Wilhelm II.. He was considered close to the people prince who held audiences for anyone regularly. Also, the research and technology over he was open, so he had one of the first cars in the duchy, undertook in 1911 a research expedition to Spitsbergen, ran the opening of an airfield - today's Leipzig-Altenburg Airport - and received the world traveler Sven Hedin and Fridtjof Nansen. With the outbreak of World War I Lieutenant General Ernst was. Commander of the 8th Infantry Regiment Thuringia. 153, which was used as part of the IV. Corps on the Western Front. On 19.08.1914 he was appointed General of Infantry and awarded after the Marne battle with the Iron Cross First Class. He then took over the 16th Infantry Brigade on 07.03.1914 and was appointed on 20.03.1915 as commander of the 8th Division. On 30.05.1915 he received the Order Pour le Mérite and retired from active service from. Ernst II. was appointed a second time at the top of the 8th Division, which he commanded until his retirement due to illness in August 1916 on 4 April 1916In October 1918, when the defeat of Germany in World War I and the collapse of the monarchy already started to emerge, Ernst II hesitated. Adopt a reformed electoral law for the Duchy. On 07.11.1918 riots broke in Altenburg. The Duke was still trying to change the situation by appointing three Social Democrats in the government, but eventually abdicated on 13.11.1918 From 1922 he lived under the name Ernst, Baron  of Rieseneck at Schloss Fröhliche Weiderikunft at Wolfersdorf  after he had given up his interim apartment in Berlin. Already in April 1919, he attended lectures in physics, oceanography and philosophy at the University of Berlin. His wife separated from him in the meantime, the marriage was divorced in 1920. On his castle Fröhliche Wiederkunft, he taught with the support of Kurd Kiss Hauer an observatory, which was equipped with the most modern equipment of the time and became a much-visited research institution. In the early 1930s he studied at the Astrophysical Institute of the University of Jena. In 1934 he was permitted by the Thuringian Ministry of Justice, the name Ernst Duke of Saxe-Altenburg to lead again, which had been forbidden him in 1923. In this year he also married his longtime girlfriend, the singer Marie Triebel. She used until her death the title "Baroness of Rieseneck". On 01.05.
1937 Ernst II. became a  member of the NSDAP.  In 1938 he received the honorary citizenship of the city of Altenburg. On 10.04.1943 gifted Duke Ernst II. Altenburg Palace to the City Altenburg. Although the Castle Fröhliche Wiederkunft  had been expropriated in 1946 in the wake of land reform in the Soviet Occupation Zone, Ernst was granted a lifelong residency in October by the competent Soviet headquarters. An offer of his eldest son - the Hereditary Prince Georg Moritz - to move to the location in the British occupation zone Hamborn castle near Paderborn he declined. Thus Ernst II. was the only former German prince, the citizens of the GDR. duke Ernst II. died as the last former reigning german Prince on 22.03.1955.
He had been married twice. First he married on 17.02.1898 in Bückenburg Pricness Adelheid zu schaumburg-Lippe, a duaghter of Prince Wilhelm from the so-called Nachod line. The marriager was divorced on 17.01.1922.  Second her made on 17.03.1934 a morganatic marriage to the singer Maria Treibel, who took the Title Baroness of Rieseneck.
From his first marriage he had four children
  • Charlotte Agnes, married to to Prince Sigismund of Prussia
  • Georg Moritz, who succeeded his father as Head of the Ducal House
  • Elisabeth
  • Friedrich Ernst
After the death of Duke Ernst II. his eldest son became the new head of the Ducal House. Until the  age of 13 Georg Moritz  lived in Altenburg. End of March 1913 brought his father him to Dresden, where his further education took place on King George High School. He received his military training in the 8th Thuringian Infantry RegimentAlready in his youth, Georg Moritz had turned towards anthroposophy. Beginning of the 1930s, the encounter with Siegfried Pickert was crucial for him. Center of his life shifted in these circles in the castle Hamborn, where he was actively involved as representatives of the anthroposophical teaching since 1931Although the Nazi regime banned the anthroposophy, the work could be continued with disabled children in Hamborn castle until June 1941 thanks to mediation by Georg Moritz. Finally, however, it was suppressed by the Gestapo and taken the CEO of the institution Adolf Ammerschläger and Georg Moritz for nine and a half months in protective custody. In 1946, Georg Moritz came back to Hamborn Castle  where he campaigned anew for employees, guests of the convalescent home and especially for the living there in the boarding school youth. Until 1968 he worked among other things, the board of the local social relief organization. He lived modestly in a small apartment in the castle, surrounded by an extensive library. On 13.02.1991 Hereditary Prince Georg Moritz died as a result of pneumonia in ahosptial at Rendsburg. With his death the line Sachsen-Altenburg became extinct in the male line,

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