Christian, Duke of Augustenborg

Christian, Duke of Augustenborg

Duke Christian August of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Augustenburg (1798-1869, "Christian Carl Frederik August"), usually simply known by just his first name, Christian, "Duke of Augustenborg", was a claimant of the rulership of the provinces of Slesvig and Holstein, and a fiefholder of Augustenborg and Sønderborg. He was a prince of the House of Oldenburg and a cadet-line descendant of the Danish royal house.

He was the eldest son and heir of Louise Auguste of Denmark and Frederik Christian II, Duke of Augustenborg. As such, he was close to succeed in the Danish throne. He was the brother-in-law of King Christian VIII. And nephew of King Frederik VI.

In 1848, Schleswig-Holstein had broken out into open insurrection on German-nationalistic motives. A provisional government had been established at Kiel under the Duke of Augustenborg, who travelled to Berlin to secure the assistance of Prussia in asserting his rights. The First War of Schleswig ensued.

However, European powers were united in opposing any dismemberment of Denmark. Among others, Emperor Nicholas I of Russia, speaking with authority as Head of the elder Holstein-Gottorp line, regarded the Duke of Augustenborg a rebel. Russia had guaranteed Schleswig to the Danish crown by the treaties of 1767 and 1773.

A treaty of peace between Prussia and Denmark was signed at Berlin on July 2, 1850. Both parties reserved all their antecedent rights. Denmark was satisfied that the treaty empowered the king-duke to restore his authority in Holstein with or without the consent of the German Confederation. Augustenborg was ousted from any power, as Danish troops now marched in to coerce the refractory duchies.

The question of the Augustenburg succession made an agreement between the big powers impossible, and on March 31, 1852 the duke of Augustenburg resigned his claim in return for a money payment. Duke Christian sold his rights to the Duchy of Schleswig-Holstein to Denmark in aftermath of Treaty of London, but later renounced his rights to the Duchy of Schleswig-Holstein in favor of his son Frederik August.

In 1864, his son Frederick of Augustenborg proclaimed himself as Duke of Schleswig and Holstein.

Duke Christian August died 1869.

Marriage and issue

Christian married in 1820 his second cousin Countess Lovisa-Sophie Danneskjold-Samsøe (1797-1867) who was a Danish noblewoman and relative of kings of Denmark, belonging to an illegitimate branch of the House of Oldenburg.

Several children:
*Frederik August (Friedrich Christian August, 1829-80), Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Augustenburg, born 1829 in Augustenborg. He was nephew of Caroline Amalie, Queen Consort of Denmark, and thus "nephew-in-law" of the King Christian VIII of Denmark himself, as well as a great-nephew of Frederick VI. In 1863 claimed to succeed King Frederik VII of Denmark as Duke of Schleswig-Holstein. Died 1880. He married Princess Adelheid of Hohenlohe-Langenburg became father of one surviving son and a number of daughters including Augusta Viktoria, German Empress.
*Frederik Christian Carl August (1831-1917), later (1866) married his third cousin Princess Helena of the United Kingdom, and settled in England. They were both great, great grandchildren of Frederick, Prince of Wales (father of George III of the United Kingdom and Queen Caroline Mathilde of Denmark). They were the parents of Duke Albert.
*Louise Auguste (1823-1872)
*Caroline Amelie (1826-1901)
*Caroline Christiane Auguste Emilie Henriette Elisabeth (1833-1917)


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