Elisabeth of Saxony
|Born||18 October 1552|
Wolkenstein Castle in Wolkenstein
|Died||2 April 1590 (aged 37)|
|Noble family||House of Wettin|
|Spouse(s)||John Casimir of the Palatinate-Simmern|
|Father||August, Elector of Saxony|
|Mother||Anna of Denmark|
Elisabeth of Saxony (born: 18 October 1552 at Wolkenstein Castle in Wolkenstein – died: 2 April 1590 in Heidelberg) was a Saxon princess from the House of Wettin by birth and by marriage Countess Palatine of Simmern.
She married on 4 June 1570 in Heidelberg during the Diet of Speyer with Count Palatine John Casimir of Simmern (1543–1592). August opposed the policies of John Casimir, who was a Calvinist and friendly to France. With this marriage, August hoped to woo John Casimir over to the Lutheran side. However, he did not succeed. The Catholics in Germany regarded the marriage as a provocation against the Habsburg dynasty and an attempt to form a united Protestant front.
The Calvinist Johann Casimir tried to break the religious opposition of his Lutheran wife. In October 1585, she was arrested and accused of adultery and a murder plot against her husband. Even her brother, Elector Christian I, was convinced of her guilt. She converted to Calvinism while in captivity, and died shortly afterwards.
Marriage and issue
From her marriage with John Casimir, Elizabeth had the following children:
- Unnamed son (1573)
- Marie (1576–1577)
- Elisabeth (1578–1580)
- Dorothea (1581–1631), married in 1595 Prince John George I of Anhalt-Dessau (1598–1618)
- Unnamed daughter (1584)
- Unnamed daughter (1585)
- The current reigning monarchs Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom, King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden, King Juan Carlos I of Spain, King Harald V of Norway, Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands, Queen Margrethe II of Denmark, King Albert II of Belgium and Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg are all her direct-line descendants.
- August von Kluckhohn (1877), "Elisabeth (Pfalzgräfin bei Rhein)", Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie (ADB) (in German), 6, Leipzig: Duncker & Humblot, pp. 7–8
- Friedrich von Bezold (1881), "Johann Casimir, Pfalzgraf bei Rhein", Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie (ADB) (in German), 14, Leipzig: Duncker & Humblot, pp. 307–314
- Karl von Weber: Archiv für die sächsische Geschichte, p. 215
- Bayerische Akademie der Wissenschaften: Die letzten Jahre der Pfalzgräfin Elisabeth, Proceedings of the III Cl., 1873, 1879
- Böttcher, Hans-Joachim (2018). Elisabeth von Sachsen und Johann Kasimir von der Pfalz: Ein Ehe- und Religionskonflikt [Elisabeth of Saxony and John Casimir of the Palatinate: A Marital and Religious Conflict] (in German). Dresden: Dresdner Buchverlag. ISBN 9783946906063.