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Duke Christoph von Mecklenburg

In the Duchy of Mecklenburg ruled in the first half of the 16. Century together, the two brothers Henry V. the peaceable and Albrecht VII. the Fair. Henry took the position, that the community government is to obtain equal rights maintain, But Albrecht called for a full inheritance of the land, the government and the income. It was after much back and forth a middle ground. The brothers shared in 1534 Offices and income, so that now distinguish between Mecklenburg-Schwerin and Mecklenburg-Güstrow had. But the principle of community government remained intact.


Albrecht VII. was a restless and ambitious character which his modest possessions is not enough, especially when he thought of the considerable number of sons. These thoughts might have contributed to the decision, when he decided for the imprisoned Danish King Christian II., the uncle of his wife and against Christian III. participate in the so-called Count's Feud, to get fame, Honor, Swag, the governorship, perhaps even to fight for the crown itself. Included in Copenhagen, he had to capitulate after a year of siege. The Emperor had promised to replace him all war costs. But neither he nor Lübeck wanted after this unfortunate course of the war reach into the bag. Albrecht calculated the part of his damage on 300.000 Gulden and these debts mass was extremely inflammatory and oppressive to him and after his death to the sons of.

Since the year 1536 he made many trips to the courts of the Emperor, King of the Romans and many princes, to get his money. They were always in vain and not even the copy of the certificate of ide dignity of Reichserbvorschneiders he was able to obtain. On one of these trips were Albrechts wife Anna, had miscalculated the date of confinement, at the 30. June 1537 Augsburg to her eighth child Christoph, Later the Duke of Mecklenburg life. It received its name after the Augsburg Bishop Christoph von Stadion, is said to have lifted him from the baptism.

From the oldest children lived 1537 only four:

Johann Albrecht * 1525
Ulrich *1527
George *1528
Anna *1533

Followed Christoph 1540 nor the son of Karl. George and Anna were already brought in childhood to the court their strict Lutheran aunt Elisabeth of Brunswick-Lüneburg and educated there. Two years after Christopher's birth also left Johann Albrecht Ulrich and the parental house; that went to the court of the Elector Joachim II. of Brandenburg, this to the Duke Wilhelm of Bavaria. A fatal result was the complete alienation of children from their mother.

The only daughter Anna, later Duchess of Courland was one of the unhappy and joyless female figures of Hohenzollern House. The unhappy marriage of the Elector Joachim I. of Brandenburg and the Danish Elisabeth in 1507 sprung, they learned in their childhood home do not know a harmonious family life.

Zu Michaelis 1553 Leupold took over the rectorship of the cathedral school Guestrower and moved with him to Güstrow about Christoph. Already 1555 he also became Coadjutor Archbishop of Riga, William of Brandenburg-Ansbach, with the right of succession. His election was disputed and led to armed conflict, during which both the 1. July 1556 were captured to Kockenhusen.

Was meantime 1547 Herzog Albrecht VII. died, the now 5 Sons left. Also brother Henry had two sons, Magnus und Philipp. The former had already been chosen as a boy bishop of Schwerin, and died 1550 to leave before his father without children. Philip, since 1537 insane, came not to succeed in consideration. So when Henry V. at the 6. January 1552 died, and his part of the country to his brother's heirs fell, since all Mecklenburg was reunited in a line and significantly reduces the risk of further subdivisions.

With the return of Christopher to Mecklenburg in 1569 goes out basically the general historical interest in him. The following on the release from captivity 23 Years later years Christopher's lack of a larger background. He led the quiet life of a small German princes. Perfect and upright, he managed his modest property, fought all the time with his brothers and established a household.

His first wife was Dorothea of ​​Denmark (*1528) Daughter of King Frederick I. They married on Koldinghus on 27. October 1573. She died two years later in the bishopric of the diocese of Ratzeburg to Schoenberg on 11. November 1575. The second wife was Elisabeth of Sweden, a daughter of King Gustav Vasa. The marriage took place on 7. More 1581 in Stockholm statt. With her he had a daughter Margarete Elisabeth. After Christopher's death she went to her home and lived on Norrköpingshus. She died in Sweden 20. November 1597 and was buried in the cathedral of Uppsala. Christopher passed away in the night on the 4. March 1592 and wurdeam 25. March solemnly interred in the cathedral of Schwerin.

The complete life story of Christopher is told in detail in the below mentioned work: His childhood, the election as coadjutor of the Archbishop of Riga, the Livonian Koadjutorfehde, Swedish alliance, Christoph in Polish captivity, His return to Mecklenburg, the succession dispute, Marry and end of life…


Alexander Green Mountain: Duke Christoph von Mecklenburg, Coadjutor of the Archdiocese of Riga: A contribution to the history of Mecklenburg and the Livonian, composed of numerous Edited by Baltic historians Dr. Ernst Seraphim: Publisher of Franz Kluge, 1898 (Download)

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