Countess Adelaide of Lippe-Biesterfeld

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Countess Adelaide of Lippe-Biesterfeld
Princess of Saxe-Meiningen
File:Countess Adelaide of Lippe-Biesterfeld.jpg
Burial Christuskirche, Detmold
Spouse Prince Friedrich Johann of Saxe-Meiningen
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
Adelheid Karoline Mathilde Emilie Agnes Ida Sophie zur Lippe-Biesterfeld
House Lippe
Father Ernest II, Count of Lippe-Biesterfeld
Mother Countess Karoline of Wartensleben

Countess Adelaide of Lippe-Biesterfeld (22 June 1870 - 3 September 1948) was the eldest child of Ernest II, Count of Lippe-Biesterfeld and Countess Karoline of Wartensleben.[1]

Family and early life

File:Ernst of Lippe-Biesterfeld with daughters.jpg
Adelaide with her father and two sisters.

Adelaide was born on 22 June 1870 to Ernest II, Count of Lippe-Biesterfeld and his wife Countess Karoline of Wartensleben.

After the death of Woldemar, Prince of Lippe in 1895, her parents were involved in a regency and succession dispute to the principality of Lippe. Though Woldemar's younger brother Alexander succeeded, he was incapable of ruling due to a mental illness. Consequently, two branches of the House of Lippe argued over rights to a regency. Prince Adolf of Schaumburg-Lippe, a brother-in-law of Wilhelm II, German Emperor was chosen, but another settlement allowed Ernest to become the regent of Lippe-Detmold on 17 July 1897.

Marriage and issue

At Neudorf, Adelaide married Prince Friedrich Johann of Saxe-Meiningen, a younger son of Georg II, Duke of Saxe-Meiningen on 24 April 1889.[1][2] They had the following children together:

Name Birth Death Notes
Feodora Karola Charlotte Marie Adelaide Auguste Mathilde 29 May 1890 12 March 1972 married on 21 January 1910 to Wilhelm Ernst, Grand Duke of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach.
Adelaide Erna Karoline Marie Elisabeth 16 August 1891 25 April 1971 married on 3 August 1914 to Prince Adalbert of Prussia.
Georg, Prince of Saxe-Meiningen 11 October 1892[2] 6 January 1946 Died as a POW in Russian camp of Cherepovets, Soviet Union; married Countess Klara-Maria of Korff genannt Schmising-Kerssenbrock; had issue including Princess Regina of Saxe-Meiningen, wife of Crown Prince Otto of Austria.
Ernst Leopold Friedrich Wilhelm Otto 23 September 1895[2] 17 August 1914 Killed in action, near Maubeuge, France
Luise Marie Elisabeth Mathilde Helene Katharine 13 March 1899 14 February 1985 married on 25 October 1936 to Götz, Freiherr von Wangenheim
Bernhard, Prince of Saxe-Meiningen 30 June 1901 4 October 1984 married firstly Margot Grössler (morganatic) and secondly Baroness Vera Schäffer of Bernstein (equal marriage)

Role in Lippe succession dispute

Two branches of the House of Lippe debated over rights to the principality of Lippe-Detmold.[3]

As Adelaide's great-grandmother was a member of the petite noblesse, her family's claim to full royalty was challenged.[3] This claim threatened the succession to Saxe-Meiningen, as Adelaide was married to the Duke of Saxe-Meiningen's heir apparent; were her father deemed a lesser royal status, it might be thought that her own claim was not equal enough for her husband's family.[4]

Titles, styles, honours and arms

Titles and styles

  • 22 June 1870 – 24 April 1889: Her Highness Countess Adelaide of Lippe-Biesterfeld
  • 24 April 1889 – 3 September 1948: Her Highness Princess Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen



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