Sophia Dorothea

(1666—1726) electoral princess of Hanover

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B. 3 Feb. 1666, da. of Georg Wilhelm, duke of Lüneburg-Celle, and Eléonore Desmiers d'Olbreuse; m. Georg Ludwig (later George I), 22 Nov. 1682; d. 3 Nov. 1726; bur. Celle.

The marriage of Sophia Dorothea to her cousin ended in disaster. In the 1690s, she became involved in a passionate affair with Count Königsmarck. In 1694 he was waylaid at the palace and never seen again; she was divorced and spent the rest of her days at Ahlden in Celle, without access to her children. Her confinement was strict but comfortable, with servants and visitors. George II was reputed to be devoted to the memory of a mother he never saw after the age of eleven. The florid love-letters between Sophia and Königsmarck have been published.

Subjects: British History.

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