Today in History - October 31st. 1636 - Birth of Ferdinand Maria, Elector (Kurfürst) of Bavaria

On October 31st. 1636 the eldest son of Maximilian I, Elector of Bavaria and
his second wife, Maria Anna of Austria was born.
He received the name: Ferdinand Maria.

Ferdinand Maria, Elector of Bavaria - Source picture: Wikipedia

Through his mother, Ferdinand Maria was a first cousin of:
Queen Mariana of Spain;
Leopold I, Holy Roman Emperor.

With such a an ancestry it wasn't difficult to find an appropriate wife.
On December 8th. 1650 Ferdinand Maria of Bavaria married 
Henriette Adelaide of Savoy. 

She was the daughter of Victor Amadeus I of Savoy and Princess 
Christine of France (daughter of Henry IV and Marie de' Medici).

Ferdinand Maria and Henriette - Source picture: Wikipedia

Ferdinand Maria and Henriette Adelaide of Savoy had 7 children,
2 of them would have progeny.

In 1651 Ferdinand Maria succeeded his father as elector of Bavaria,
but he still was a minor. His mother and his uncle Albert VI of Bavaria
served as regents for 3 years.

Finally on October 31rd. 1654 Ferdinand Maria was crowned as elector
of Bavaria. His absolutistic style of leadership became a model for the
rest of Germany. 

Ferdinand Maria modernized the Bavarian army and introduced the first
Bavarian local government code. He encouraged not only agriculture and
industry but also building or restoring numerous churches and monasteries.

The elector died on May 26th. 1679 in the Schleissheim Palace. He was
buried in imperial crypt of the Theatiner Church in Munich.

 own picture of the Beautiful Theatiner Church in Munich

Did you know that Ferdinand Maria was the great grandfather of the
French monarch Louis XV?

So you can see that family ties between the European Royal Houses
really are close!

Today in History - October 30th.1563 - Sophie of Brunswick-Lüneburg

October 30th. 1563 marks the birth of Sophie of Brunswick-Lüneburg.

Sophie of Brunswick-Lüneburg - Source picture: Wikipedia

Sophie was the eldest child of Duke William the Younger of Brunswick-Lüneburg
and Dorothea of Denmark (daughter of King Christian III of Denmark).

In Dresden she married on May 3rd. 1579, Margrave George Frederick I of
Brandenburg-Ansbach-Kulmach. He was a powerful figure of his time. 
This marriage remained childless.

After the death of her husband, in 1604, Sophie returned to her family.
She survived her husband for 36 years. She often stayed in Nuremberg with
her sisters Clara, Countess of Schwarzburg and Sibylle, Duchess of 
On January 14th. 1639 she died in Nuremberg. There she was buried in the
St.Lorenz Church.
St.Lorenz Church Nuremberg on a rainy day - own picture

Today in History - October 29th. 1266 - Margaret of Austria, Queen of Bohemia, a pawn on the political chessboard

Around 1204 a young girl was born, who received the name:
Margaret of Austria

Margaret of Austria - Source picture: Wikipedia

Her life began promising because she was the eldest daughter of
Leopold VI, Duke of Austria and Theodora Angelina, a member of the 
Byzantine Imperial family.

But on November 29th. 1225, Margaret (who was then 21 years old) had
to marry the 14-year old Henry, King-elect of Germany. Henry was the 
eldest son of Emperor Frederick II. The wedding took place in Nürnberg.
Her coronation took place on March 23rd. 1227 in Aachen. King Henry
and Queen Margaret had 2 short-lived sons. 
In 1235 Henry rebelled against his father, but he was defeated and dethroned.
After that he died possibly on February 12th. 1242 (after a fall from his horse,
which could be a possible attempted suicide). 
Margaret (who didn't saw her husband a lot) moved to Würzburg, 
where she lived in seclusion in the Markuskloster.
On February 11th. 1252, Margaret married Ottokar II of Bohemia.
Margaret was 26 years older than her second husband. They 
became King and Queen of Bohemia on September 23rd. 1253.
Then the troubles started again. At that time, Margaret already was
50 years old and she couldn't bear any children, so King Ottokar II
tried to gain from the Pope the recognition to make his illegitimate
son (which he had with one of Margaret's ladies-in-waiting) as his
lawful successor. The Pope refused this and in 1261 the King 
obtained the annulment of his marriage with Margaret. 
Margaret left Bohemia and returned to Austria. She settled her
residence in Krumau am Kamp and spent the winters in Krems.
According to some sources, Margaret died on October 29th. 1266,
although this date is controversial. 
After her death she was buried in the Lilienfeld Abbey next to her
father (like she had wished).  

Tree tuesday picture - Knokke-Heist in Belgium

My tree tuesday picture of this week was taken on a grey Sunday in 2014 in
Knokke-Heist (Belgium).

own picture - Knokke-Heist trees

That weekend I visited Heist, the calmer municipality near the mondaine
sea side resort Knokke.

own picture - Knokke-Heist - trees

The contradictions between Heist and Knokke (although they belong to one
municipality) can't be bigger. Heist is calm and relaxing. Knokke is mondaine
and even sometimes called 'Petit Paris' due to its art galleries.
Mayor of Knokke-Heist is Count Leopold Lippens, of the notable family

I can tell you a lot of Knokke-Heist but I wanted to show you the calmer 
part of the municipality. I hope you enjoyed the pictures. 
own picture - Knokke-Heist - trees

Today in History - October 28th. 1696 - Maurice de Saxe, Count of Saxony

Maurice de Saxe was born on October 28th. 1696 at Goslar
(now: lower Saxony Germany).

Maurice de Saxe - Source picture: Wikipedia

He was the illegitimate son of Augustus II the Strong, King of Poland and
Elector of Saxony and Countess Maria Aurora of Königsmarck. 

In 1698 the Countess sent him to his father in Warsaw, where his father had
been elected King of Poland (in the previous year). 
Unfortunately due to the unsettled condition of the country, Maurice was
obliged to spend the greater part of his youth outside the borders of Poland.
This separation from his father made him independent and had an important
effect on his future career.

When Maurice was 12 years old, he served in the army of
Prince Eugene of Savoy. He next served under Peter the Great against the
Swedes. In 1711 August formally recognized him as his son and Maurice was
granted the rank of Count. At the age of 17 in 1713 he commanded his own 

Maurice de Saxe - Source picture: Wikipedia


On March 12th. 1714 a marriage was arranged between him and one of the
richest of his father's subjects, Countess Johanna Viktoria Tugendreich von
Loeben. He dissipated her fortune so quick that he was soon heavily in debt.

On January 21st. 1715 Johanna gave birth to a son, who was called 
August Adolf after his grandfather. The child lived a few hours. 

On March 21st. 1721 their marriage was annuled.


Meanwhile, in 1717, he went to Paris to study mathematics in 1720 he
obtained a commission as Maréchal de camp.

On March 26th. 1743 Maurice was promoted to Marshal of France.
From this time on, he became one of the great generals of the age. After
some brilliant achievements King Louis XV of France conferred on him
the Château de Chambord for life and in 1746 Maurice was naturalised
as a French subject.


During the last years of his life, Maurice had an affair with a French lady,
who was called Marie-Geneviève Rainteau. At that time she was 18!
years old. In 1748 she gave birth to a daugther, Maria Aurora or
Marie Aurore in French.

In 1764 Marie Aurore married Antoine, Comte d'Horne, an illegitimate
son of Louis XV of France.
She was the grandmother of Amantine Lucile Aurore Dupin, who became

the famous writer George Sand.


Maurice de Saxe also wrote a remarkable work on the art of war with the
title 'Mes Rêveries'


Maurice de Saxe died on November 20th. 1750 @ Château de Chambord in