Author Topic: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar  (Read 73263 times)

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Offline jfkhaos

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Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« on: August 19, 2004, 11:28:29 AM »
I have read An Uncomman Woman, as well as a few other books that mention Empress Augusta, but I have found hardly any pictures of her that are not included in these books.  Thanks to the picture of Henry and Irene's wedding, I have seen another picture of her but she is sitting and she is not too clear to make out.  Does anyone have any pictures of her?  I know she was wheelchair bound towards the end.  Thanks in advance!

Offline Martyn

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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2004, 08:13:27 AM »
Am I correct in thinking that Augusta was born a princess of Saxe-Weimar?
'For a galant spirit there can never be defeat'....Wallis Windsor

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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2004, 04:01:13 PM »
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Am I correct in thinking that Augusta was born a princess of Saxe-Weimar?

Yes and her sister Marie was married to Karl of Prussia the Emperor's brother.  From what I have read they DID
NOT have a sisterly relationship. :o :o :o

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2004, 05:18:19 PM »
Augusta was pretty isolated w/in the British court. Considering that, and the fact that she was friends with QV and had helped with the marriage of Vicky & Fritz, as well as being more liberal than many at court, I always found it surprising that she wasn't kinder to Vicky (even w/political differences).
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Offline Martyn

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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2004, 09:22:04 AM »
I believe that Albert and Victoria had hoped that when they sacrificed Vicky on the altar of European dynastic matches that she might be aided in her mission to liberalise Prussia by Empress Augusta.  The assumption being that as she had been born into the supposedly liberal court at Weimar, she might have therefore sided with Vicky and effected this much hoped for liberalisation.
Maybe I was a little too strong with the sacrificing remark since Vicky and Fritz did love each other completely (fortunately) but the dynastic element should not be ignored.
I rather think that it was maybe Vicky's steadfast determination to remain an English princess above all else that may have alienated Augusta (along with the rest of the Hohenzollern court).  Vicky was also quite forthright about most things which may not have helped as she was after all still quite young at the time of her marriage.
Still, they were quite awful to her and never passed up an opportunity to humiliate her.  On one occasion it would seem that they evicted Vicky from her sitting room, along with all her furniture and effects, so that the room could be used for mourning a deceased relative on the pretext that this particular room was always used for that purpose!
'For a galant spirit there can never be defeat'....Wallis Windsor

'The important things is not what they think of me, but what I think of them.'......QV

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #5 on: August 23, 2004, 01:20:10 PM »
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I believe that Albert and Victoria had hoped that when they sacrificed Vicky on the altar of European dynastic matches that she might be aided in her mission to liberalise Prussia by Empress Augusta.  The assumption being that as she had been born into the supposedly liberal court at Weimar, she might have therefore sided with Vicky and effected this much hoped for liberalisation.
Maybe I was a little too strong with the sacrificing remark since Vicky and Fritz did love each other completely (fortunately) but the dynastic element should not be ignored.
I rather think that it was maybe Vicky's steadfast determination to remain an English princess above all else that may have alienated Augusta (along with the rest of the Hohenzollern court).  Vicky was also quite forthright about most things which may not have helped as she was after all still quite young at the time of her marriage.
Still, they were quite awful to her and never passed up an opportunity to humiliate her.  On one occasion it would seem that they evicted Vicky from her sitting room, along with all her furniture and effects, so that the room could be used for mourning a deceased relative on the pretext that this particular room was always used for that purpose!


'Sacrificed' might be too harsh.  ;)  But certainly that match was planned practically as soon as Vicky could walk. Their first 'meeting' took place in 1856 at the Great Exhibition so Vicky was about 14? Fritz was about 8 yrs older I think. They got along well and it was only 2 years later they were engaged (age 15-16); then married (about 17-18); and a mother soon after (18-19). Considering the dynastic importance and the rather quick nature of the engagement/wedding (which Vicky & Fritz were all for!) it's amazing that it turned out to be such a long-lasting, passionate relationship. They really did have time to see each other in person and some was done over correspondence. I wonder what would've happened if Vicky had just found Fritz awful? Albert doted so much on Vicky, I doubt he would've pushed it and I don't think Victoria would've either.
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Offline Eurohistory

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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #6 on: August 25, 2004, 08:52:50 AM »
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I believe that Albert and Victoria had hoped that when they sacrificed Vicky on the altar of European dynastic matches that she might be aided in her mission to liberalise Prussia by Empress Augusta.  The assumption being that as she had been born into the supposedly liberal court at Weimar, she might have therefore sided with Vicky and effected this much hoped for liberalisation.
Maybe I was a little too strong with the sacrificing remark since Vicky and Fritz did love each other completely (fortunately) but the dynastic element should not be ignored.
I rather think that it was maybe Vicky's steadfast determination to remain an English princess above all else that may have alienated Augusta (along with the rest of the Hohenzollern court).  Vicky was also quite forthright about most things which may not have helped as she was after all still quite young at the time of her marriage.
Still, they were quite awful to her and never passed up an opportunity to humiliate her.  On one occasion it would seem that they evicted Vicky from her sitting room, along with all her furniture and effects, so that the room could be used for mourning a deceased relative on the pretext that this particular room was always used for that purpose!



Martyn,

Vicky was not "sacrificed." she was passionately in love with Friedrich and die revering his image.  Theirs was one of the true royal love affairs of the XIX century.  In fact I believe her love for Friedrich was considerably more sincere than her mother's love for Albert, which was based on infatuation and co-dependency.

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Offline Martyn

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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2004, 08:08:27 AM »
Arturo, if you had read my post before you decided to descend on me from high perhaps you would have noticed that the "sacrificed" remark was qualified later on.
MY point was, and I stick by it, that the marriage was arranged as a dynastic union at an early age.  Grandduchessella's question as to what might have happened if the two had not taken to each other is an interesting question.  Thankfully it did become a love match, which is just as well, considering the struggles that Vicky had to endure at the Hohenzollern court.
Interestingly, David Duff in his book "Hessian Tapestry" suggests that QV's choice of Louis of Hesse as Alice's husband was in some part governed by Vicky's situation in Berlin, namely that the former was frustrated at her inability to influence matters at the Berlin court through her daughter; secondly that QV had been disappointed in Vicky not being able to spend much time in England and hoped (wrongly, as it turmed out) that Alice's future husband would be able to do so.
He also interestingly suggests that Vicky's absence contributed to Albert's physical and mental decline; that her departure left a big emotional gap in his life.
'For a galant spirit there can never be defeat'....Wallis Windsor

'The important things is not what they think of me, but what I think of them.'......QV

Offline Eurohistory

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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #8 on: August 26, 2004, 09:36:53 AM »
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Augusta was a princess of Schleswig-Holstein and not saxe-weimar. The Emperor wilhem did not have a brother named Karl only Henry. His other two brothers sigismund and waldemar died in childhood.


Princess Augusta of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach (1811-1890) was the second daughter of Grand Duke Carl Friedrich of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach (1783-1863) and Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna of Russia (1786-1859).  She married the future Kaiser Wilhelm I and was the mother of Friedrich III and mother-in-law of Victoria of Great Britain.

Augusta's siblings, Grand Duke Carl Alexander of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach (1818-1901) and Princess Maria of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach (1808-1877) both mad interesting marriages.

Grand Duke Carl Alexander married his first cousin Princess Sophia of the Netherlands (1824-1897), daughter of King Willem II of the Netherlands and of Grand Duchess Anna Pavlovna of Russia (1795-1865), a younger sister of Maria Pavlovna.

Princess Maria of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach married Prince Karl of Prussia (1801-1883), a younger brother of Kaiser Wilhelm I.  Furthermore, Wilhelm and Karl's sister, Princess Charlotte of Prussia, better known in Russian history as Tsaritsa Alexandra Feodorovna, was the consort of none other than Nicholas I, the brother of both Anna and Maria Pavlovna.

Arturo Beéche

PS: Sources: THE GRAND DUCHESSES (EUROHISTORY 2004), page 32 & Burke's Royal Families of the World, page 261.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by Eurohistory »
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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #9 on: August 26, 2004, 09:39:01 AM »
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Arturo, if you had read my post before you decided to descend on me from high perhaps you would have noticed that the "sacrificed" remark was qualified later on.
MY point was, and I stick by it, that the marriage was arranged as a dynastic union at an early age.  Grandduchessella's question as to what might have happened if the two had not taken to each other is an interesting question.  Thankfully it did become a love match, which is just as well, considering the struggles that Vicky had to endure at the Hohenzollern court.
Interestingly, David Duff in his book "Hessian Tapestry" suggests that QV's choice of Louis of Hesse as Alice's husband was in some part governed by Vicky's situation in Berlin, namely that the former was frustrated at her inability to influence matters at the Berlin court through her daughter; secondly that QV had been disappointed in Vicky not being able to spend much time in England and hoped (wrongly, as it turmed out) that Alice's future husband would be able to do so.
He also interestingly suggests that Vicky's absence contributed to Albert's physical and mental decline; that her departure left a big emotional gap in his life.


Martyn,

I am sorry if you feel that I came down on you harshly...it was not my intent.  Of course you are entitled to your opinion, my post was not designed to rob you of it.

Arturo Beéche
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Offline MarquisAnthony

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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #10 on: August 27, 2004, 09:31:22 AM »
Wow thanks Arturo for providing more info. I had no idea that the Empress Augusta was the daughter of a Russian grand duchess. I wonder if she herself ever dealt with any issues in Berlin for that. So the empress is a great-grand daughter of Catherine the Great?
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Offline Martyn

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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #11 on: August 27, 2004, 10:01:08 AM »
It would appear that Vicky was not the only one to feel the sharpness of Empress Augusta's tongue.
Pcss Alice's admired David Strauss, theologian, Biblical critic, man of letters and author of the controversial "Life of Jesus" ; he also compiled a series of lectures on the subject of Voltaire and the latter's antipathy to the priesthood.  These  lectures were reproduced in print and Pcss Alice askked him to dedicate them to her, knowing full well the criticism that this would draw down upon her (and which he had feared and explained to her).
David Duff in "Hessian Tapestry" recounts:
" The result was only to be expected.  Berlin was furious.  The Empress Augusta ranted that Alice was 'a complete atheist', and never forgave her.  When she died, the Empress commented that it was probably just as well for the children, owing to their mother's views on religion."
'For a galant spirit there can never be defeat'....Wallis Windsor

'The important things is not what they think of me, but what I think of them.'......QV

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #12 on: August 27, 2004, 10:15:37 AM »
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It would appear that Vicky was not the only one to feel the sharpness of Empress Augusta's tongue.
Pcss Alice's admired David Strauss, theologian, Biblical critic, man of letters and author of the controversial "Life of Jesus" ; he also compiled a series of lectures on the subject of Voltaire and the latter's antipathy to the priesthood.  These  lectures were reproduced in print and Pcss Alice askked him to dedicate them to her, knowing full well the criticism that this would draw down upon her (and which he had feared and explained to her).
David Duff in "Hessian Tapestry" recounts:
" The result was only to be expected.  Berlin was furious.  The Empress Augusta ranted that Alice was 'a complete atheist', and never forgave her.  When she died, the Empress commented that it was probably just as well for the children, owing to their mother's views on religion."


It still amazes me that she and QV maintained a friendship throughout her life considering what she said about her children & grandchildren and her treatment of them. QV may have agreed (who knows?) about Alice's religious search--she herself was of  a much simpler religious outlook. BUT I can't imagine that she appreciated the comments after QV suffered the first loss of a child. (It's also ironic considering that Augusta faced condemnation in Berlin for her support of Catholics, I believe).  EA was NOT happy over Ella snubbing 2 of her grandchildren (Kaiser Wilhelm & Fritz of Baden--son of her daughter Louise) and snubbed the Hessian princesses publicly at a royal event. I guess living with a gruff soldier who only had room in his heart for one woman (his first and only love Elisa Radziwill) and married you basically as a dynastic brood mare (plus gave you no support in the harshness of the Berlin court unlike Fritz)  could make anyone bitter over the decades. I wonder what she was like as a young girl and if she went into the marriage with any hopes that just turned to ashes?
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Offline jfkhaos

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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #13 on: August 27, 2004, 11:13:06 AM »
Are there any pictures of Augusta's palace in Coblentz?  

From what I have read of Augusta, I think one of Victoria's greatest attractions in Augusta's friendship was how highly she thought of Albert.  I really can't imagine that Victoria would have let remarks from Augusta about her children go unanswered...but then again it is possible.  I am not sure when Augusta was last in England, but I think it was years before she died.

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Re: Kaiser Wilhelm I & Augusta of Saxe-Weimar
« Reply #14 on: August 27, 2004, 11:28:59 AM »
Quote
Wow thanks Arturo for providing more info. I had no idea that the Empress Augusta was the daughter of a Russian grand duchess. I wonder if she herself ever dealt with any issues in Berlin for that. So the empress is a great-grand daughter of Catherine the Great?


One of the family trees I included in our latest book THE GRAND DUCHESSES (EUROHISTORY 2004) includes a chart demonstrating the various family connections between the Grand Dukes of Saxe-weimar-Eisenach, Grand Dukes of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, the Royal House of Prussia and the Imperial House of Russia.

Louis Ferdinand of Prussia (1907-1994) was married to a Russian Grand Duchess (Kira Kirillovna).  His mother, Crown Princess Cecilie was the daughter of a Russian Grand Duchess (Anastasia Mikhailovna).  His great-great-grandmother, Empress Augusta, was herself the daughter of a Russian Grand Duchess (Maria Pavlovna); while Cecilie's own paternal line great-grandmother was a Princess of Prussia (Alexandrine), and one of Cecilie's great-great-grandmother's was also another Russian Grand Duchess (Elena Pavlovna). (Source: THE GRAND DUCHESSES, Table #5, page 84 - Eurohistory 2004)

Arturo Beéche
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