Today in History - September 23rd. 1781 - Princess Juliane of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld

September 23rd. 1781 marks the birth of Princess Juliane of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld
in Coburg (Germany).

Juliane of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld- Source picture: Wikipedia

Her parents were Franz Frederic Anton, Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld and
Countess Augusta Caroline Reuss of Ebersdorf. Juliane was the sister of 
King Leopold I of Belgium, a niece of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom
and of King Ferdinand II of Portugal.

After the wedding of Grand Duke Alexander of Russia (later Tsar Alexander I),
Empress Catherine II of Russia looked for a suitable bride for her other grandson
Grand Duke Constantine. The Empress invited Countess Augusta and three of
her daughters.  They traveled to Saint Petersburg and received good comments
like: it's sad that Grand Duke Constantine couldn't marry the three ...

Finally the Grand Duke chosed Juliane. At that time she wasn't 15 yet!
Juliana converted to Orthodox faith and she took the name Anna Feodorovna.

On February 26th. 1796 she married Grand Duke Constantine. This marriage
was very unhappy. Grand Duke Constantine was violent and fully dedicated to
his military career and he didn't care about his wife.

In 1799 Anna left Russia for 'medical' treatment and she didn't want to return.
She went to her family in Coburg but they didn't support her. She was forced
to return to Russia.

In 1801 Emperor Paul I was assassinated, this gave Juliana the opportunity
to escape. She underwent a new medical treatement in Coburg and she never
returned to Russia. 

Juliane traveled around Europe and found solace in clandestine affairs.
She gave birth to an illegitimate son and daughter. 

Near Bern (Switzerland) Juliane acquired an estate called Elfenau. There
she spent the rest of her life.

Juliane died on August 15th. 1860 in Switzerland
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