An Update For the Saxe-Weimars

Some of you may remember my mentioning the Prince Edward and his wife Princess Augusta of Saxe-Weimar, who I found as the hosts of Frederick Mackenzie Fraser during the night of the 1881 census.

I discovered that Prince Edward, or to give him his full name, Prince William Augustus Edward of Saxe-Weimar (Wilhelm August Eduard Prinz von Sachsen-Weimar-Eisenach) married Augusta morganatically in 1851. To follow on from that I can now give some further details.

Prince Edward was born in 1823, the 4th child of Karl Bernhard, Duke of Saxe-Weimar (the principal Duchy of Saxony) and Princess Ida of Saxe-Meningen. He appears to have been born and lived most of his life in England, joining the British Army in 1841 as an Ensign. His army career covers a large period, including the Crimean War, until 1897 when it ended, his final rank that of a Field Marshal. He died at his home in London in 1902 of complications arising from appendicitis. He is buried at Frogmore, Windsor Great Park, Berkshire.

Lady Augusta Katherine Gordon-Lennox was born in 1827, the seventh child of the 5th Duke of Richmond. (The first Duke of Richmond was one of the illegitimate sons of King Charles II.) She married Prince Edward in 1851, but it wasn’t until 1866 that she was made Princess Augusta of Saxe-Weimar in England. She remained throughout her life the Countess von Dornberg in her husband’s home country. They were to have no children, and Augusta died of pneumonia, also in London, in 1904.

I have also found evidence that Prince Edward was engaged before Augusta, a lady only referred to as Miss Lane-Fox who died either at the end of 1849 or early 1850.

So it seems, maybe there was no great scandal with the couple after all.

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