Duchy of Saxe-Altenburg
Herzogtum Sachsen-Altenburg
State of the Holy Roman Empire,
State of the German Confederation,
State of the North German Confederation,
State of the German Empire,
State of the Weimar Republic
Blason Duché de Saxe-Weimar.svg

Flag Coat of arms
Heil unserm Herzog, heil
(Hail to our Duke, hail!)
Saxe-Altenburg within the German Empire
Ernestine duchies after 1825, showing Saxe-Altenburg in orange
Capital Altenburg
Government Principality
 - 1603–13 Christian II, Elector of Saxony (regent for John Philip)
 - 1669–72 John George II, Elector of Saxony (regent for Frederick William III)
 - 1826–34 Frederick
 - 1908–18 Ernst II
 - Saxe-Weimar partitioned 7 July 1602
 - Personal union with
 - Ernestine duchies
    rearranged, duchy
12 November 1826
 - German Revolution November 1918
 - Merger of Thuringia 1920
 - 1905 1,323 km2 (511 sq mi)
 - 1905 est. 207,000 
     Density 156.5 /km2  (405.2 /sq mi)
* See Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg
† As Free State of Saxe-Altenburg
‡ In 1920, the ex-Imperial states of Saxe-Altenburg, Saxe-Meiningen, Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach, Schwarzburg-Sondershausen, Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt and the two principalities of Reuß all merged to form the Free State of Thuringia.

Saxe-Altenburg (German: Sachsen-Altenburg) was one of the Saxon duchies held by the Ernestine branch of the Wettin dynasty in present-day Thuringia.[1]



Saxe-Altenburg in the 19th century
Castle of Altenburg

The duchy originated from the medieval Burgraviate of Altenburg in the Imperial Pleissnerland (Terra Plisensis), a possession of the Wettin Margraves of Meissen since 1243. Upon a partition treaty of 1485, Altenburg fell to Elector Ernest of Saxony, the progenitor of the Ernestine Wettins.[2] After the Division of Erfurt in 1572 among Duke John William of Saxony and his nephews, Altenburg fell to his Duchy of Saxe-Weimar.

When in 1602 John William's son and successor Frederick William I died, the Duchy of Saxe-Weimar passed to his younger brother John II, while in 1603 Frederick William's eldest son John Philip in compensation received the newly created Duchy of Saxe-Altenburg. It was an Imperial State in its own right, with a vote in the Reichstag, for much of the 17th century until the extinction of its ruling line in 1672, when it was inherited by Ernest I the Pious, the Duke of Saxe-Gotha, who had married the heiress.

Saxe-Altenburg thereafter remained part of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg until the extinction of that house in 1825, when Gotha and Altenburg were split up, with Gotha going to the Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld and Altenburg to the Duke of Saxe-Hildburghausen, who in exchange gave up Hildburghausen to the Duke of Saxe-Meiningen. This family ruled in the duchy until the end of the monarchies in the course of the German Revolution of 1918–1919. The succeeding Free State of Saxe-Altenburg was incorporated into the new state of Thuringia in 1920.

Saxe-Altenburg had an area of 1,323 km² and a population of 207,000 (1905). Its capital was Altenburg.

The Saxe-Altenburg line became extinct following the death of Prince George Moritz in 1991.

Dukes of Saxe-Altenburg

Elder line

Line extinct, inherited by Saxe-Gotha, thereupon Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg

Junior line

Heads of the Ducal House of Saxe-Altenburg, post monarchy

In 1991 the Saxe-Altenburg line became extinct. Its representation was merged with the one of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach.

Two branches descend from duke Ernest the Pious, the father of the progenitor of this Saxe-Altenburg branch: Saxe-Meiningen and Saxe-Coburg and Gotha; according to old Wettin family law, they would have divided the actual territories between them (as happened to Gotha and Altenburg in 1826).

See also


  1. ^ "The Ernestine Line's Saxon Duchies" (Web). Historical Atlas. Tacitus Historical Atlas. Retrieved 2007-05-19. 
  2. ^  "Saxe-Altenburg". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. 1913. 

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Saxe-Altenburg — • One of the Saxon duchies in the east of Thuringia; situated on the west frontier of the Kingdom of Saxony Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Saxe Altenburg     Saxe Altenburg …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Saxe-Altenburg — Duché de Saxe Altenbourg Le duché de Saxe Altenbourg était l un des vingt cinq États de l Empire allemand. Ce duché fait partie des anciens duchés saxons issus des partages successifs du landgraviat de Thuringe, dont fut apanagée la branche… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Saxe-Altenburg — /saks ahl tn berrg /, n. a former duchy in Thuringia in central Germany. * * * …   Universalium

  • Saxe-Altenburg — /sæks ˈæltənbɜg/ (say saks altuhnberg) noun a former duchy in Thuringia, in central Germany …   Australian English dictionary

  • Saxe-Altenburg — /saks ahl tn berrg /, n. a former duchy in Thuringia in central Germany …   Useful english dictionary

  • Marie of Saxe-Altenburg — For other people called Marie of Saxe Altenburg, see Princess Marie of Saxe Altenburg. Marie of Saxe Altenburg Queen consort of Hanover, Duchess of Cumberland and Tevoitdale Tenure 18 November 1851 – 12 June 1878 Spouse …   Wikipedia

  • Frederic-Guillaume Ier de Saxe-Altenburg — Frédéric Guillaume Ier de Saxe Altenburg Frédéric Guillaume Ier de Saxe Altenburg, né en 1562, décédé en 1602. Il fut duc de Saxe Altenburg. Il fonda la lignée des Saxe Altenburg éteinte en 1672. Fils de Jean Guillaume de Saxe Weimar et de… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Princess Charlotte of Saxe-Altenburg — Princess Charlotte Agnes Princess Sigismund of Prussia Princess Charlotte with her family ca. 1906. In the picture: Duke Ernst II, Princess Elisabeth, Hereditary Prince George Moritz, Duchess Adelaide with Prince Frederick and in the back… …   Wikipedia

  • Ernest II De Saxe-Altenburg — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Ernest II. Ernest II de Saxe Altenburg ( photographie officielle prise en 1915) …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Georges De Saxe-Altenburg — (1820) …   Wikipédia en Français

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.