Wedding of the Duke of Schleswig-Holstein and Princess Dorothea of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, 1898


Duke Ernst Günther II of Schleswig-Holstein, son of Duke Frederick VIII of Schleswig-Holstein and Princess Adelheid of Hohenlohe-Langenburg, married Princess Dorothea of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, daughter of Prince Philipp of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and Princess Louise of Belgium, at the St. Augustin Church in Coburg on this day in 1898, followed by a Reception at Schloss Ehrenburg. The couple had no children and remained married until his passing in 1921 while the Duchess died in 1967.

Royal Guests and Relatives in attendance included the Duke and Duchess of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha (wearing her Pearl Tiara), the Prince (uncle of the bride) and Princess of Bulgaria (in her Köchert Tiara), the Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Hesse (wearing the Hesse Strawberry Leaf Tiara), Crown Princess Marie of Romania (in the Diamond Loop Tiara), the Prince and Princess of Hohenlohe-Langenburg, and Princess Clémentine of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha-Koháry among others. There were several notable absences from the Wedding including Kaiser Wilhelm II and Empress Augusta Victoria of Germany (sister of the groom), King Leopold II of Belgium (grandfather of the bride), and the bride’s mother, Princess Louise, who was then in a sanatorium after a notorious affair.

The Wedding was described:

 Ernst Gunther, the Duke of Schleswig-Holstein, was married today at the Court church in Coburg to Princess Dorothea of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. The Wedding breakfast took place “in the throne room of the palace,” according to the New York Times.

The Duke is the brother of Empress Augusta Viktoria of Germany, and, thus, the Kaiser’s brother-in-law. Ernst Gunther’s family has been “actively engaged” in trying to prevent this marriage from taking place.

This is largely due to the “scandal that has been connected with the bride’s mother, Princess Louise,” who is the eldest daughter of King Leopold II of the Belgians. Louise married Prince Philipp of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha in 1875.

The couple’s religious differences have also proved difficult. The Duke is a Major in the Prussian Army. He is a Lutheran and his wife is Roman Catholic. According to the Roman Catholic church’s canon law, the children of mixed marriages must be brought up in the Catholic church.

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