Frederick II, Landgrave of Hesse-Cassel

Frederick II, Landgrave of Hesse-Cassel

Frederick II ( _de. Landgrafen Friedrich II von Hessen-Kassel; 14 August 1720 – 31 October 1785) was Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel (or Hesse-Cassel) from 1760 to 1785.

Frederick was born at Kassel in Hesse, the son of William VIII, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel and his wife Dorothea Wilhelmine of Saxe-Zeitz. His paternal grandfather was Charles I, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel, and his uncle was Frederick I of Sweden. His education was entrusted to Colonel August Moritz von Donop and from 1726 to 1733 to the Swiss theologian and philosopher, Jean-Pierre de Crousaz.

In December 1745 Frederick landed in Scotland with 6000 Hessian troops to support the House of Hanover against the Jacobite rising.

In February 1749 Frederick and his father visited the Archbishop-Elector of Cologne, Clemens August of Bavaria, who received Frederick into the Catholic Church.

In 1760, Frederick succeeded his father as Landgrave. Despite his Catholicism, Hesse-Kassel remained Calvinist, and Frederick's children were raised as protestants.

Family and children

On 8 May 1740, by proxy at London, and on 28 June 1740 in person at Kassel, Frederick married Princess Mary, daughter of King George II of Great Britain and Caroline of Ansbach. They had four sons:
# William (25 December 1741-1 July 1742))
# William I, Elector of Hesse (3 June 1743 – 27 February 1821)
# Charles (19 December 1744 – 17 August 1836)
# Frederick (11 September 1747 – 20 May 1837). Father of Prince William of Hesse-Kassel.

In 1747, he left his family. In 1749, Frederick converted from Calvinism to Catholicism. The couple formally separated in 1755, and Friedrich entered service in the Prussian military.

After Mary died in 1772, he married on 10 January 1773 at Berlin with Margravine Philippine, daughter of Frederick William, Margrave of Brandenburg-Schwedt and Sophia Dorothea of Prussia.

His three sons were fostered by Protestant relatives after 1747, and with the Landgravine Mary moved to Denmark in 1756, to care for the children of her late sister Louise of Great Britain who had died in 1751. The two elder boys married Danish princesses, their first cousins, in 1763 and 1766 respectively. The younger sons remained in Denmark, becoming important lords and royal functionaries. Only the eldest returned to Germany, when inheriting the principality of Hanau, and then in 1785 ascended the Kassel landgraviate too.

Landgrave Frederick II died in 1785 at Castle Weißenstein, Kassel.


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1= 1. Frederick II, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel
2= 2. William VIII, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel
3= 3. Dorothea Wilhelmine of Saxe-Zeitz
4= 4. Charles I, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel
5= 5. Maria Amalia of Courland
6= 6. Maurice William, Duke of Saxe-Zeitz
7= 7. Marie Amalie of Brandenburg
8= 8. William VI, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel
9= 9. Hedwig Sophia of Brandenburg
10= 10. Jacob Kettler, Duke of Courland
11= 11. Louise Charlotte of Brandenburg
12= 12. Maurice, Duke of Saxe-Zeitz
13= 13. Dorothea Marie of Saxe-Weimar
14= 14. Frederick William, Elector of Brandenburg
15= 15. Sophie Dorothea of Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg
16= 16. William V, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel
17= 17. Amalie Elisabeth of Hanau-Münzenberg
18= 18. George William, Elector of Brandenburg
19= 19. Elizabeth Charlotte of the Palatinate
20= 20. William Kettler, Duke of Courland
21= 21. Sophia of Prussia
22= 22. George William, Elector of Brandenburg (=18)
23= 23. Elizabeth Charlotte of the Palatinate (=19)
24= 24. John George I, Elector of Saxony
25= 25. Magdalene Sybille of Prussia
26= 26. William, Duke of Saxe-Weimar
27= 27. Eleonore Dorothea of Anhalt-Dessau
28= 28. George William, Elector of Brandenburg (=18)
29= 29. Elizabeth Charlotte of the Palatinate (=19)
30= 30. Philipp, Duke of Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg
31= 31. Sophie Hedwig of Saxe-Lauenburg

External links

* [,adb0070526) Article in the ADB]

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