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Princess Augusta
Duchess consort of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel

AugustaFrederikevonHannover01.jpg
Consort 26 March 1780 – 10 November 1806 (&000000000000002600000026 years, &0000000000000229000000229 days)
Spouse Charles William Ferdinand, Duke of Brunswick
Issue
Augusta, Hereditary Princess of Württemberg
Caroline, Queen of the United Kingdom
Frederick William, Duke of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel
Full name
Augusta Frederica
House House of Hanover
House of Brunswick-Bevern
Father Frederick, Prince of Wales
Mother Princess Augusta of Saxe-Gotha
Born 31 July 1737(1737-07-31)
St James's Palace, London
Died 23 March 1813(1813-03-23) (aged 75)
Hanover Square, London
Burial 31 March 1813
St George's Chapel, Windsor

Princess Augusta Frederica of Wales (31 August 1737 – 23 March 1813) was a member of the British Royal Family, a granddaughter of George II and elder sister of George III. She later married into the Ducal House of Brunswick, of which she was already a member. Her daughter Caroline of Brunswick was the Queen consort of George IV.

Early lifeEdit

Princess Augusta Frederica of Wales was born at St. James's Palace, London. Her father was Frederick, Prince of Wales, the eldest son of King George II and Queen Caroline of Ansbach and her mother was the Princess of Wales, Augusta of Saxe-Gotha.

Fifty days later, she was christened at St. James's Palace by the Archbishop of Canterbury. Her godparents were her paternal grandfather, the King (represented by his Lord Chamberlain, the Duke of Grafton), and her grandmothers, Queen Caroline and the Dowager Duchess of Saxe-Gotha (both represented by proxies).

Her third birthday was celebrated by the first public performance of Rule, Britannia! at Cliveden in Buckinghamshire.

Life in BrunswikEdit

Augusta regarded the residence in Brunswick as too simple. A new palace was built for her in Zückerberg south of Brunswick to answer more to her taste, constructed by Carl Christoph Wilhelm Fleischer, and called Richmond, to remind her of England. When the palace was finished in 1768, Augusta moved there permanently.

Augusta rarely appeared at the court of Braunschweig because of the dominance of her mother-in-law. When Charles became regent in 1773, her mother-in-law left the court and Augusta filled the position of first lady in the court ceremonies of Brunswick, although she often took short holidays to her personal palace Richmond. In 1780, Charles, already regent for his father, became sovereign duke, and Augusta became duchess consort.

Personal lifeEdit

MarriageEdit

The negotiations about her marriage begun in 1761, and on 16 January 1764, Augusta married Charles William Ferdinand, Duke of Brunswick, at the Chapel Royal of St James's Palace.

The marriage was purely an arranged political marriage and Augusta and Charles regarded each other with mutual indifference. Augusta was indifferent to Charles's affairs with Maria Antonia Branconi and Louise Hertefeld. Her indifference was sometimes seen as arrogance, and it gave rise to rumours and slander.

ChildrenEdit

She returned to Great Britain in 1764 to give birth to her first child and took a long time to return to Brunswick after the birth. Augusta's popularity was severely damaged by the fact that her eldest sons were born with handicaps.

Together, the couple had 7 children:

  1. Auguste Caroline Friederike Luise, 3 December 1764
  2. Karl Georg August, 8 February 1766
  3. Caroline Amalie Elisabeth, 17 May 1768
  4. Georg Wilhelm Christian, 27 June 1769
  5. August, 18 August 1770
  6. Friedrich Wilhelm, 9 October 1771
  7. Amelie Karoline Dorothea Luise, 22 November 1772

Later lifeEdit

In 1806, when Prussia declared war on France, the Duke of Brunswick, 71 at the time, was appointed commander-in-chief of the Prussian army. On 14 October of that year, at the Battle of Jena, Napoleon defeated the Prussian army, and, on the same day, at the battle of Auerstadt, the Duke of Brunswick was seriously wounded, dying a few days later. The Duchess of Brunswick, with two of her sons, and a widowed daughter-in-law, fled her ruined palace for Altona, were she was present with her daughter-in-law Marie of Baden at her dying husband's side. Her other daughter-in-law, Princess Louise of Orange-Nassau, left for Switzerland with her mother.

Due to the advancing French army, Augusta and Marie were advised by the British ambassador to flee, and they left shortly before her husband's death. They were invited to Sweden by Marie's brother-in-law King Gustav IV Adolf of Sweden. Marie accepted to offer and left for Sweden, but Augusta left for Augustenborg, a small town east of Jutland. The Duchess of Brunswick remained here, with her niece, Princess Louise Augusta, daughter of her sister Queen Caroline Mathilde of Denmark, until her brother, George III finally relented, in September 1807, and allowed her to move to London. She moved to Montague House, Blackheath, in Greenwich, with her daughter, the Princess of Wales, but soon fell out with her daughter, and purchased the house next door, Brunswick House, as she renamed it. The Duchess of Brunswick lived out her days in Blackheath and died, in 1813, aged 75.

Titles, styles, honors and armsEdit

Titles and stylesEdit

  • 31 August 1737 – 16 January 1764: Her Royal Highness Princess Augusta Frederica of Wales
  • 16 January 1764 – 26 March 1780: Her Royal Highness Princess Augusta Frederica, The Hereditary Duchess of Brunswick-Lüneburg
  • 26 March 1780 – 10 November 1806: Her Royal Highness Princess Augusta Frederica, The Duchess of Brunswick-Lüneburg
  • 10 November 1806 – 23 March 1813: Her Royal Highness Princess Augusta Frederica, The Dowager Duchess of Brunswick-Lüneburg

ArmsEdit

Augusta was granted use of the arms of the kingdom, differenced by a label argent of five points, the centre bearing a cross gules, the other points each bearing a rose gules.

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