Prince Friedrich of Saxe-Meiningen

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Prince Friedrich
Prince Frederick John of Saxe-Meiningen.jpg
Born (1861-10-12)12 October 1861
Meiningen
Died 23 August 1914(1914-08-23) (aged 52)
Tarcienne (Walcourt)
Spouse Countess Adelaide of Lippe-Biesterfeld
Issue Feodora, Grand Duchess of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach
Adelaide, Princess Adalbert of Prussia
Georg, Prince of Saxe-Meiningen
Prince Ernst Leopold
Princess Luise Marie
Bernhard, Prince of Saxe-Meiningen
Full name
Friedrich Johann Bernhard Hermann Heinrich Moritz
House Saxe-Meiningen
Father Georg II, Duke of Saxe-Meiningen
Mother Princess Feodora of Hohenlohe-Langenburg

Prince Friedrich of Saxe-Meiningen, Duke of Saxony (Full given names: Friedrich Johann Bernhard Hermann Heinrich Moritz; 12 October 1861 – 23 August 1914) was a German soldier and member of the Ducal House of Saxe-Meiningen.

Birth and university

Prince Friedrich was born in Meiningen the second son of Georg II, Duke of Saxe-Meiningen and his second wife Princess Feodora of Hohenlohe-Langenburg, a descendant of Diego Velázquez.

Prince Friedrich attended the University of Bonn where unusually for a royal prince he refused to accept an adjutant or maintain a horse and carriage. At university due to his royal status he was a member of the exclusive "Borussia" student dueling corps. Although the future William II, German Emperor was a prominent member, Prince Friedrich was not active in the group, rarely attending meetings, instead preferring to shun social life in favour of concentrating on his studies. He narrowly escaped serious injury at Bonn when a retort blew up near him during a chemical experiment.[1]

Army and death

After finishing his studies Prince Friedrich entered into the army. Just as he had at university while a lieutenant in Strassbourg he was not an active member of society focusing on the study of artillery. He was promoted to colonel in 1902, brigadier general in 1907 and major general in 1910 before retiring from the army in 1913.[1]

With the outbreak of the First World War in 1914, Prince Friedrich, despite suffering a broken arm a short while before hand, returned to active service. Prince Friedrich met his death fighting in Tarcienne during the invasion of Belgium. His son Prince Georg travelled to meet his father's regiment to discover his father's fate. He discovered his father had been struck by shrapnel or machine gun bullets when he left a house he was using as an observation post.[1]

His body was brought to the College of the Sacred Heart of Charleroi where he was embalmed.[2] His body was returned to Meiningen for burial.

Marriage and issue

Prince Friedrich married Countess Adelaide of Lippe-Biesterfeld (later Princess of Lippe), daughter of Count Ernst of Lippe-Biesterfeld, in Neudorf on 24 April 1889. The dynastic status of the marriage of Friedrich and Adelaide was questioned during the Lippe succession dispute when it was argued that if Adelaide's brother, Leopold, was excluded from the Lippe succession on the grounds that their great-grandmother, Modeste von Unruh, was not of equal birth, then the children of Friedrich and Adelaide should be excluded from the Saxe-Meiningen succession on the same grounds.[3]

Prince Friedrich and Princess Adelaide had six children who were full members of the Ducal House of Saxe-Meiningen:

  • Princess Feodora of Saxe-Meiningen (29 May 1890–12 March 1972) she married Wilhelm Ernst, Grand Duke of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach on 21 January 1910. They have four children
  • Princess Adelheid of Saxe-Meiningen (16 August 1891–25 April 1971) she married Prince Adalbert of Prussia on 3 August 1914. They have three children.
  • Georg, Prince of Saxe-Meiningen (11 October 1892 – 6 January 1946) he married Countess Klara-Maria of Korff genannt Schmising-Kerssenbrock on 22 February 1919. They have four children.
  • Prince Ernst of Saxe-Meiningen (23 September 1895-17 August 1914) at the age of eighteen he was killed in World War I.
  • Princess Luise of Saxe-Meiningen (13 March 1899-14 February 1985) she married Götz Baron of Wangenheim on 25 October 1936. They have two children and three grandchildren:
    • Baroness Karin of Wangenheim (29 October 1937) she married Hans-Dieter Schwarze on 5 August 1963. They have one son:
      • Daniel Simeon Schwarze Schwarze (26 August 1965)
    • Baron Ernst Friedrich of Wangenheim (14 April 1941) he married Christa Margarete Binninger on 4 July 1963. They have two children:
      • Baroness Verena Regina of Wangenheim (20 November 1966)
      • Baron Peter of Wangenheim (1970-1970)
  • Bernhard, Prince of Saxe-Meiningen (30 June 1901–4 October 1984) he married Margot Grössler on 25 April 1931. They have two children, three grandchildren and one great-grandson. He remarried Baroness Vera Schäffer of Bernstein on 11 August 1948. They have three children.

Ancestry

References

  1. ^ a b c German Princes Who Have Fallen in the War. New York Times. 31 October 1915
  2. ^ Lemaire 1929, pp. 72–75
  3. ^ Article 2 -- No Title, By The Associated Press. New York Times. 9 October 1904. Page 5

Bibliography

  • Lemaire, A. (1929). L'invasion allemande au pays de Charleroi. Brussels: Janssens, Leunis et Havet. p. 325.
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