Thorium is a weakly radioactive metallic chemical element with symbol Th and atomic number 90. Thorium is tarnishes black when it is exposed to air, forming thorium dioxide. Thorium is an electropositive actinide. All known thorium isotopes are unstable; the most stable isotope, 232Th, has a half-life of 14.05 billion years, or about the age of the universe. In the universe, thorium and uranium are the only three radioactive elements that still occur in large quantities as primordial elements, it is estimated to be over three times as abundant as uranium in the Earth's crust, is chiefly refined from monazite sands as a by-product of extracting rare-earth metals. Thorium was discovered in 1829 by the Norwegian amateur mineralogist Morten Thrane Esmark and identified by the Swedish chemist Jöns Jacob Berzelius, who named it after Thor, the Norse god of thunder, its first applications were developed in the late 19th century. Thorium's radioactivity was acknowledged during the first decades of the 20th century.
In the second half of the century, thorium was replaced in many uses due to concerns about its radioactivity. Thorium is still being used as an alloying element in TIG welding electrodes but is being replaced in the field with different compositions, it was material in high-end optics and scientific instrumentation, as the light source in gas mantles, but these uses have become marginal. It has been suggested as a replacement for uranium as nuclear fuel in nuclear reactors, several thorium reactors have been built. Thorium is a moderately soft, bright silvery radioactive actinide metal. In the periodic table, it lies to the right of actinium, to the left of protactinium, below cerium. Pure thorium is ductile and, as normal for metals, can be cold-rolled and drawn. At room temperature, thorium metal has a face-centred cubic crystal structure. Thorium metal has a bulk modulus of about the same as tin's. Aluminium's is 75.2 GPa. Thorium is about as hard as soft steel, so when heated it can be rolled into sheets and pulled into wire.
Thorium is harder than either of them. It becomes superconductive below 1.4 K. Thorium's melting point of 1750 °C is above both those of actinium and protactinium. At the start of period 7, from francium to thorium, the melting points of the elements increase, because the number of delocalised electrons each atom contributes increases from one in francium to four in thorium, leading to greater attraction between these electrons and the metal ions as their charge increases from one to four. After thorium, there is a new downward trend in melting points from thorium to plutonium, where the number of f electrons increases from about 0.4 to about 6: this trend is due to the increasing hybridisation of the 5f and 6d orbitals and the formation of directional bonds resulting in more complex crystal structures and weakened metallic bonding. Among the actinides up to californium, which can be studied in at least milligram quantities, thorium has the highest melting and boiling points and second-lowest density.
Thorium's boiling point of 4788 °C is the fifth-highest among all the elements with known boiling points. The properties of thorium vary depending on the degree of impurities in the sample; the major impurity is thorium dioxide. Experimental measurements of its density give values between 11.5 and 11.66 g/cm3: these are lower than the theoretically expected value of 11.7 g/cm3 calculated from thorium's lattice parameters due to microscopic voids forming in the metal when it is cast. These values lie between those of its neighbours actinium and protactinium, part of a trend across the early actinides. Thorium can form alloys with many other metals. Addition of small proportions of thorium improves the mechanical strength of magnesium, thorium-aluminum alloys have been considered as a way to store thorium in proposed future thorium nuclear reactors. Thorium forms eutectic mixtures with chromium and uranium, it is miscible in both solid and liquid states with its lighter congener cerium. All but two elements up to bismuth have an isotope, stable for all purposes, with the exceptions being technetium and promethium.
All elements from polonium onward are measurably radioactive. 232Th is one of the three nuclides beyond bismuth that have half-lives measured in billions of years. Four-fifths of the thorium present at Earth's formation has survived to the present. 232Th is the only isotope of thorium occurring in quantity in nature. Its stability is attributed to its closed nuclear shell with 142 neutrons. Thorium has a characteristic terrestrial isotopic composition, with atomic weight 232.0377. I
Princess Alice of Battenberg
Princess Alice of Battenberg was the mother of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, mother-in-law of Queen Elizabeth II. A great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria, she grew up in the United Kingdom, the German Empire, the Mediterranean, she was congenitally deaf. After marrying Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark in 1903, she adopted the style of her husband, becoming Princess Andrew of Greece and Denmark, she lived in Greece until the exile of most of the Greek royal family in 1917. On returning to Greece a few years her husband was blamed in part for the country's defeat in the Greco-Turkish War, the family was once again forced into exile until the restoration of the Greek monarchy in 1935. In 1930, she was committed to a sanatorium in Switzerland. After her recovery, she devoted most of her remaining years to charity work in Greece, she stayed in Athens during the Second World War, sheltering Jewish refugees, for which she is recognised as "Righteous Among the Nations" by Israel's Holocaust memorial institution, Yad Vashem.
After the war, she stayed in Greece and founded an Orthodox nursing order of nuns known as the Christian Sisterhood of Martha and Mary. After the fall of King Constantine II of Greece and the imposition of military rule in Greece in 1967, she was invited by her son and daughter-in-law to live at Buckingham Palace in London, where she died two years later, her remains were transferred from a vault in her birthplace, Windsor Castle, to a Russian Orthodox convent on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem in 1988. Alice was born in the Tapestry Room at Windsor Castle in Berkshire in the presence of her great-grandmother, Queen Victoria, she was the eldest child of Prince Louis of Battenberg and his wife Princess Victoria of Hesse and by Rhine. Her mother was the eldest daughter of Louis IV, Grand Duke of Hesse and Princess Alice of the United Kingdom, the Queen's second daughter, her father was the eldest son of Prince Alexander of Hesse and by Rhine through his morganatic marriage to Countess Julia Hauke, created Princess of Battenberg in 1858 by Louis III, Grand Duke of Hesse.
Her three younger siblings, Louise and Louis became Queen of Sweden, Marquess of Milford Haven, Earl Mountbatten of Burma, respectively. She was christened Victoria Alice Elizabeth Julia Marie in Darmstadt on 25 April 1885, she had six godparents: her three surviving grandparents, Grand Duke Louis IV of Hesse, Prince Alexander of Hesse and by Rhine, Julia, Princess of Battenberg. Alice spent her childhood between Darmstadt, London and Malta, her mother noticed that she was slow in learning to talk, became concerned by her indistinct pronunciation. She was diagnosed with congenital deafness after her grandmother, Princess Battenberg, identified the problem and took her to see an ear specialist. With encouragement from her mother, Alice speak in English and German. Educated she studied French, after her engagement, she learned Greek, her early years were spent in the company of her royal relatives, she was a bridesmaid at the marriage of the Duke of York and Mary of Teck in 1893. A few weeks before her sixteenth birthday she attended the funeral of Queen Victoria in St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, shortly afterward she was confirmed in the Anglican faith.
Princess Alice met Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark, the fourth son of King George I of Greece and Olga Constantinovna of Russia, while in London for King Edward VII's coronation in 1902. They married in a civil ceremony on 6 October 1903 at Darmstadt; the following day, there were two religious marriage ceremonies. She adopted the style of her husband, becoming "Princess Andrew"; the bride and groom were related to the ruling houses of the United Kingdom, Russia and Greece, their wedding was one of the great gatherings of the descendants of Queen Victoria and Christian IX of Denmark held before World War I. Prince and Princess Andrew had five children, all of whom had children of their own. After their wedding, Prince Andrew continued his career in the military and Princess Andrew became involved in charity work. In 1908, she visited Russia for the wedding of Grand Duchess Marie of Russia and Prince William of Sweden. While there, she talked with her aunt, Grand Duchess Elizabeth Fyodorovna, formulating plans for the foundation of a religious order of nurses.
Princess Andrew attended the laying of the foundation stone for her aunt's new church. In the year, the Grand Duchess began giving away all her possessions in preparation for a more spiritual life. On their return to Greece and Princess Andrew found the political situation worsening, as the Athens government had refused to support the Cretan parliament, which had called for the union of Crete with the Greek mainland. A group of dissatisfied officers formed a Greek nationalist Military League that led to Prince Andrew's resignation from the army and the rise to power of Eleftherios Venizelos. With the advent of the Balkan Wars, Prince Andrew was reinstated in the army and Princess Andrew acted as a nurse, assisting at operations and setting up field hospitals, work for which King George V awarded her the Royal Re
Windsor Castle is a royal residence at Windsor in the English county of Berkshire. It is notable for its long association with the English and British royal family and for its architecture; the original castle was built in the 11th century after the Norman invasion of England by William the Conqueror. Since the time of Henry I, it has been used by the reigning monarch and is the longest-occupied palace in Europe; the castle's lavish early 19th-century State Apartments were described by the art historian Hugh Roberts as "a superb and unrivalled sequence of rooms regarded as the finest and most complete expression of Georgian taste". Inside the castle walls is the 15th-century St George's Chapel, considered by the historian John Martin Robinson to be "one of the supreme achievements of English Perpendicular Gothic" design. Designed to protect Norman dominance around the outskirts of London and oversee a strategically important part of the River Thames, Windsor Castle was built as a motte-and-bailey, with three wards surrounding a central mound.
Replaced with stone fortifications, the castle withstood a prolonged siege during the First Barons' War at the start of the 13th century. Henry III built a luxurious royal palace within the castle during the middle of the century, Edward III went further, rebuilding the palace to make an grander set of buildings in what would become "the most expensive secular building project of the entire Middle Ages in England". Edward's core design lasted through the Tudor period, during which Henry VIII and Elizabeth I made increasing use of the castle as a royal court and centre for diplomatic entertainment. Windsor Castle survived the tumultuous period of the English Civil War, when it was used as a military headquarters by Parliamentary forces and a prison for Charles I. At the Restoration of the monarchy in 1660, Charles II rebuilt much of Windsor Castle with the help of the architect Hugh May, creating a set of extravagant Baroque interiors that are still admired. After a period of neglect during the 18th century, George III and George IV renovated and rebuilt Charles II's palace at colossal expense, producing the current design of the State Apartments, full of Rococo and Baroque furnishings.
Queen Victoria made a few minor changes to the castle, which became the centre for royal entertainment for much of her reign. Windsor Castle was used as a refuge by the royal family during the Luftwaffe bombing campaigns of the Second World War and survived a fire in 1992, it is a popular tourist attraction, a venue for hosting state visits, the preferred weekend home of Elizabeth II. Windsor Castle occupies 13 acres, combines the features of a fortification, a palace, a small town; the present-day castle was created during a sequence of phased building projects, culminating in the reconstruction work after a fire in 1992. It is in essence a Georgian and Victorian design based on a medieval structure, with Gothic features reinvented in a modern style. Since the 14th century, architecture at the castle has attempted to produce a contemporary reinterpretation of older fashions and traditions imitating outmoded or antiquated styles; as a result, architect Sir William Whitfield has pointed to Windsor Castle's architecture as having "a certain fictive quality", the Picturesque and Gothic design generating "a sense that a theatrical performance is being put on here", despite late 20th century efforts to expose more of the older structures to increase the sense of authenticity.
Although there has been some criticism, the castle's architecture and history lends it a "place amongst the greatest European palaces". At the heart of Windsor Castle is the Middle Ward, a bailey formed around the motte or artificial hill in the centre of the ward; the motte is 50 feet high and is made from chalk excavated from the surrounding ditch. The keep, called the Round Tower, on the top of the motte is based on an original 12th-century building, extended upwards in the early 19th century under architect Jeffry Wyatville by 30 ft to produce a more imposing height and silhouette; the interior of the Round Tower was further redesigned in 1991–3 to provide additional space for the Royal Archives, an additional room being built in the space left by Wyatville's hollow extension. The Round Tower is in reality far from cylindrical, due to the shape and structure of the motte beneath it; the current height of the tower has been criticised as being disproportionate to its width. The western entrance to the Middle Ward is now open, a gateway leads north from the ward onto the North Terrace.
The eastern exit from the ward is guarded by the Norman Gatehouse. This gatehouse, despite its name, dates from the 14th century, is vaulted and decorated with carvings, including surviving medieval lion masks, traditional symbols of majesty, to form an impressive entrance to the Upper Ward. Wyatville redesigned the exterior of the gatehouse, the interior was heavily converted in the 19th century for residential use; the Upper Ward of Windsor Castle comprises a number of major buildings enclosed by the upper bailey wall, forming a central quadrangle. The State Apartments run along the north of the ward, with a range of buildings along the east wall, the private royal apartments and the King George IV Gate to the south, with the Edward III Tower in the south-west corner; the motte and the Round Tower form the west edge of the ward. A bronze statue of Charles II on horseback sits beneath the Round Tower. Inspired by Hubert Le Sueur's statue of Charles I in London, the statue was cast by Josias Ibach in 1679, with the marble plinth featuring carvings
Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna of Russia
Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna of Russia was the fifth child and only surviving daughter of Emperor Alexander II of Russia and his first wife Princess Marie of Hesse and by Rhine. She was the younger sister of Alexander III of Russia and the paternal aunt of Russia's last emperor, Nicholas II. In 1874, Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna married Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh, the second son of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha; the couple had five children: a son and four daughters: Marie, Victoria Melita and Beatrice. For the first years of her marriage, Maria Alexandrovna lived in England, she neither overcame her dislike for her adopted country. She accompanied her husband on his postings as an Admiral of the Royal Navy at Devonport; the Duchess of Edinburgh travelled extensively through Europe. She visited her family in Russia and stayed for long periods in England and Germany attending social and family events. In August 1893, Maria Alexandrovna became Duchess of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha when her husband inherited the duchy on the death of his childless uncle, Ernest II, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.
She enjoyed life in Germany where she was active in charitable work. To her daughters, she gave all her support, but she was critical of her wayward son who died young in 1899, her husband died the following year. In her widowhood, Maria Alexandrovna continued to live in Coburg; the outbreak of World War I divided her sympathies. She sided with Germany against her native Russia, her only surviving brother, Grand Duke Paul, her nephew Tsar Nicholas II and many other relatives were killed during the Russian Revolution and she lost her considerable fortune. From 1893 until her death, she had the distinction of being an Imperial Russian grand duchess, a British royal Duchess, the consort of a German sovereign Duke. After World War I, Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, the duchy her husband and nephew had ruled, ceased to exist in November 1918. Maria Alexandrovna died two years while living under reduced circumstances in exile in Switzerland. Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna was born on 17 October 1853 at the Alexander Palace in Tsarskoye Selo.
She was the sixth child and only surviving daughter among the eight children of Emperor Alexander II of Russia and his first wife Empress Maria Alexandrovna of Russia, née Princess Marie of Hesse and by Rhine. At the time of her birth, her grandfather, Emperor Nicholas I of Russia, was on the throne and her father was Tsarevich. In 1855, when Maria Alexandrovna was seventeen months old, Nicholas I died and her father became the new Russian Emperor; the grand duchess grew up as the only girl with two younger ones. She did not know her only sister, Grand Duchess Alexandra Alexandrovna of Russia, who had died before she was born. Maria Alexandrovna herself died from a throat disease at the age of seven, her childhood was spent in luxury and splendor in the large palaces and country estates owned by the Romanovs. The family's main residence was the sixteen-hundred-room Winter Palace in Saint Petersburg, with another residence at Gatchina, forty miles south. In the summer, the family stayed in Peterhof, a large complex with farms and various pavilions on the Gulf of Finland.
From the end of the summer until winter, the Imperial family moved to Tsarskoye Selo, the royal village, where the Romanovs had the Catherine Palace and Alexander Palace. In the children's island, located in a pond in the park of the Alexander Palace, Maria Alexandrovna had her own private little house, off limit to adults, which she used with her brothers as a playhouse, her father added a farm, built for her enjoyment. Both parents doted on her; the Empress was a loving mother, but physically cold towards her children. The Tsarina suffered from weak lungs and had to travel to Germany and southern Europe to escape the harsh Russian winters; the Tsarina took her three younger children with her on these trips. As a consequence, Maria Alexandrovna became closer to her two younger brothers, Grand Duke Sergei and Grand Duke Paul Alexandrovich, than to her older siblings. Surrounded only by brothers, Maria grew up as a tomboy, with an independent character and a strong will. Maria was educated at the Russian court under the strict regime of her governess, Countess Alexandrine Tolstoy.
Maria Alexandrovna was the first Russian grand duchess to be raised by English nannies and to speak fluent English. Besides her native Russian, she became proficient in German and French. In August 1867, while the Imperial family was at Livadia Palace, in Crimea, Mark Twain met Maria Alexandrovna and her parents; the famous American writer described her as "blue-eyed and pretty". As many contemporaries did, Twain noticed the influence that the young grand duchess had over her father. "She is genuine and never changes in front of strangers," observed her lady in waiting, Anna Tyutcheva, a daughter of the celebrated poet Fyodor Tyutchev, adding that: "She is accustomed to be the center of the world and that everyone yields to her." Tyutcheva described her pupil as "stubborn and uncompromising" commenting that "one cannot treat her or reason with her a lot". During a visit to her maternal relatives, the Princes of Battenberg, at Jugenheim in August 1868, Grand D
Wrocław is a city in western Poland and the largest city in the historical region of Silesia. It lies on the banks of the River Oder in the Silesian Lowlands of Central Europe 350 kilometres from the Baltic Sea to the north and 40 kilometres from the Sudeten Mountains to the south; the population of Wrocław in 2018 was 639,258, making it the fourth-largest city in Poland and the main city of the Wrocław agglomeration. Wrocław is the historical capital of Lower Silesia. Today, it is the capital of the Lower Silesian Voivodeship; the history of the city dates back over a thousand years, its extensive heritage combines all religions and cultures of Europe. At various times, it has been part of the Kingdom of Poland, Kingdom of Bohemia, Kingdom of Hungary, Habsburg Monarchy and Germany. Wrocław became part of Poland again in 1945, as a result of the border changes after the Second World War, which included a nearly complete exchange of population. Wrocław is a university city with a student population of over 130,000, making it one of the most youthful cities in the country.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, the University of Wrocław Breslau University, produced 9 Nobel Prize laureates and is renowned for its high quality of teaching. Wrocław is classified as a Gamma-global city by GaWC, it was placed among the top 100 cities in the world for the quality of life by the consulting company Mercer and in the top 100 of the smartest cities in the world in the IESE Cities in Motion Index 2017 report. The city hosted the Eucharistic Congress in the Euro 2012 football championships. In 2016, the city was a European Capital of the World Book Capital. In this year, Wrocław hosted the Theatre Olympics, World Bridge Games and the European Film Awards. In 2017, the city was the host of the World Games; the city's name was first recorded as "Wrotizlava" in the chronicle of German chronicler Thietmar of Merseburg, which mentions it as a seat of a newly installed bishopric in the context of the Congress of Gniezno. The first municipal seal stated. A simplified name is given, as Wrezlaw, Prezla or Breslaw.
The Czech spelling was used in Latin documents as Vratislavia. At that time, Prezla was used in Middle High German. In the middle of the 14th century, the Early New High German form of the name, began to replace its earlier versions; the city is traditionally believed to be named after Wrocisław or Vratislav believed to be named after Duke Vratislaus I of Bohemia. It is possible that the city was named after the tribal duke of the Silesians or after an early ruler of the city called Vratislav; the city's name in various other languages is: Hungarian: Boroszló, Czech: Vratislav, German: Breslau, Hebrew: ורוצלב, Yiddish: ברעסלוי, Silesian German: Brassel, Latin: Vratislavia or Budorgis or Wratislavia. The city's name in other languages is available at the list of names of European cities. Persons born or living in the city are known as "Vratislavians". In ancient times at or near Wrocław was a place called Budorigum, it has been mapped to Claudius Ptolemy's map of AD 142–147. The city of Wrocław originated at the intersection of two trade routes, the Via Regia and the Amber Road.
Settlements in the area existed during the migration period. A Slavic tribe Ślężans erected on Ostrów Tumski a gord; the city was first recorded in the 10th century as Vratislavia, the Bohemian duke Vratislaus I founded here a Bohemian stronghold. Vratislavia was derived from the duke's name Vratislav. In 985, Duke Mieszko I of Poland conquered Silesia including Wrocław; the town was mentioned explicitly in the year 1000 AD in connection with a founding of a bishopric during the Congress of Gniezno. The medieval chronicle, Gesta principum Polonorum, written by Gallus Anonymus in 1112–1116, named Wrocław, along with Kraków and Sandomierz, as one of the three capitals of the Polish Kingdom. During Wrocław's early history, the control over it changed hands between Bohemia, the Kingdom of Poland, after the fragmentation of the Kingdom of Poland, the Piast-ruled duchy of Silesia. One of the most important events during this period was the foundation of the Diocese of Wrocław by the Polish Duke Bolesław the Brave in 1000.
Along with the Bishoprics of Kraków and Kołobrzeg, Wrocław was placed under the Archbishopric of Gniezno in Greater Poland, founded by Pope Sylvester II through the intercession of the Emperor Otto III in 1000, during the Congress of Gniezno. In the years 1034–1038 the city was affected by Pagan reaction in Poland; the city became a commercial centre and expanded to Wyspa Piasek, to the left bank of the River Oder. Around 1000, the town had about 1,000 inhabitants. In 1109 during the Polish-German war, Prince Bolesław III Wrymouth defeated the King of Germany Henry V at the Battle of Hundsfeld, stopping the German march into Poland. By 1139, a settlement belonging to Governor Piotr Włostowic was built, another was founded on the left bank of the River Oder, near the present seat of the University. While the city was Polish, there were communities of Bohemians, Jews and Germans. In the 13th century, Wrocław was the political centre of the divided Polish kingdom. In April 1241, during the First Mongol invasion of Poland the city was abandoned by the inhabitants and burned for strategic reason
Potsdam is the capital and largest city of the German federal state of Brandenburg. It directly borders the German capital, is part of the Berlin/Brandenburg Metropolitan Region, it is situated on the River Havel 24 kilometres southwest of Berlin's city centre. Potsdam was a residence of the Prussian kings and the German Kaiser until 1918, its planning embodied ideas of the Age of Enlightenment: through a careful balance of architecture and landscape, Potsdam was intended as "a picturesque, pastoral dream" which would remind its residents of their relationship with nature and reason. Around the city there are a series of interconnected lakes and cultural landmarks, in particular the parks and palaces of Sanssouci, the largest World Heritage Site in Germany; the Potsdam Conference in 1945 was held at the palace Cecilienhof. Babelsberg, in the south-eastern part of Potsdam, was a major film production studio before the 1930s and has enjoyed success as a major center of European film production since the fall of the Berlin Wall.
The Filmstudio Babelsberg is the oldest large-scale film studio in the world. Potsdam developed into a centre of science in Germany in the 19th century. Today, there are three public colleges, the University of Potsdam, more than 30 research institutes in the city; the area was formed from a series of large moraines left after the last glacial period. Today, the city is three-quarters green space, with just a quarter as urban area. There are about 20 lakes and rivers in and around Potsdam, such as the Havel, the Griebnitzsee, Templiner See, Tiefer See, Teltowkanal, Heiliger See and the Sacrower See; the highest point is the 114-metre high Kleiner Ravensberg. Potsdam is divided into seven historic city Bezirke and nine new Stadtteile, which joined the city in 2003; the appearance of the city quarters is quite different. Those in the north and in the centre consist of historical buildings, the south of the city is dominated by larger areas of newer buildings; the city of Potsdam is divided into 34 Stadtteile, which are divided further into 84 statistical Bezirke.
Today one distinguishes between the older parts of the city - these are the city center, the western and northern suburbs, Bornstedt, Potsdam South, Drewitz and Kirchsteigfeld - and those communities incorporated after 1990 which have since 2003 become Stadtteile - these are Eiche, Golm, Groß Glienicke, Marquardt, Neu Fahrland and Uetz-Paaren. The new Stadtteile are located in the north of the city. For the history of all incorporations, see the relevant section on incorporation and spin-offs. Structure with statistical numbering: Officially the climate is oceanic - more degraded by being far from the coast and to the east, but using the 1961-1990 normal and the 0 °C isotherm the city has a humid continental climate, which shows a slight influence of the continent different from the climates predominantly influenced by the Atlantic Ocean. Low averages below freezing for all winter causing snows that are frequent and winters are cold, but not as stringent as inland locations or with greater influence from the same.
Summer is relatively warm with temperatures between 23 to 24 ° C, the heat waves being influenced by the UHI of Potsdam. The average winter high temperature is 3.5 °C, with a low of −1.7 °C. Snow is common in the winter. Spring and autumn are short. Summers are mild, with a high of 23.6 °C and a low of 12.7 °C. The name "Potsdam" seems to have been Poztupimi. A common theory is that it derives from an old West Slavonic term meaning "beneath the oaks", i.e. the corrupted pod dubmi/dubimi. However some question this explanation; the area around Potsdam shows signs of occupancy since the Bronze Age and was part of Magna Germania as described by Tacitus. After the great migrations of the Germanic peoples, Slavs moved in and Potsdam was founded after the 7th century as a settlement of the Hevelli tribe centred on a castle, it was first mentioned in a document in 993 as Poztupimi, when Emperor Otto III gifted the territory to the Quedlinburg Abbey led by his aunt Matilda. By 1317, it was mentioned as a small town.
It gained its town charter in 1345. In 1573, it was still a small market town of 2,000 inhabitants. Potsdam lost nearly half of its population due to the Thirty Years' War. A continuous Hohenzollern possession since 1415, Potsdam became prominent, when it was chosen in 1660 as the hunting residence of Frederick William I, Elector of Brandenburg, the core of the powerful state that became the Kingdom of Prussia, it housed Prussian barracks. After the Edict of Potsdam in 1685, Potsdam became a centre of European immigration, its religious freedom attracted people from France, the Netherlands and Bohemia. The edict accelerated economic recovery; the city became a full residence of the Prussian royal family. The buildings of the royal residences were built during the reign of Frederick the Great. One of these is the Sanssouci Palace, famed for Rococo interiors. Other royal residences include the Orangery. In 1815, at the formation of the Province of Brandenburg, Potsdam became the provincial capital until 1918, except for a period between 1827 and 1843 when Berlin was the provincial capital.
The province comprised two governorates named after their capitals Potsdam and Frankfurt (O
Princess Charlotte of Prussia (1831–1855)
Princess Frederica Louise Wilhelmina Marianne Charlotte of Prussia, was by birth a Princess of Prussia and member of the House of Hohenzollern and by marriage Hereditary Princess of Saxe-Meiningen. She was the eldest child and daughter of Prince Albert of Prussia and his first wife Princess Marianne of the Netherlands, her parents' marriage was unhappy due to Prince Albert's several affairs, was dissolved on 28 March 1849, after which Princess Marianne began to live with her former coachman Johannes van Rossum, with whom she had a son, Johannes William of Reinhartshausen. The custody of Charlotte and her two surviving siblings Albert and Alexandrine was given to their father; as a young woman, Charlotte was eligible, due to her Dutch fortune and Hohenzollern connections. In Charlottenburg on 18 May 1850, the nineteen-year-old princess married Georg, Hereditary Prince of Saxe-Meiningen, twenty-four years old; the only son of Bernhard II, Duke of Saxe-Meiningen and Princess Marie of Hesse-Kassel, he had led a battalion from Meiningen in support of the Prussians in the First Schleswig War in 1849.
After resuming his military career in Berlin, Georg soon became engaged to Charlotte, whose position as a niece of Frederick William IV of Prussia recommended her to him. It was their marriage occurred after a short engagement. Among the wedding gifts was an opulent old villa on Lake Como from her mother Marianne, as well as a substantial collection of paintings and sculptures, it was renamed the Villa Carlotta in the bride's honour. Due to their Prussian connections, the couple spent the next five years in Berlin and Potsdam but returned to Meiningen for the birth of their children; the two shared many interests with the theater, as they were both ardent attendees. They had four children. Charlotte had a talent for music, was taught by the likes of Wilhelm Taubert, Theodor Kullak, Julius Stern in her youth, she wrote a number of military marches and piano pieces. Her daughter, Princess Marie Elisabeth, would inherit these interests. On 27 January 1855, their second son Georg died. Charlotte followed him three months dying of childbirth complications on 30 March at the age of twenty-three.
Georg was inconsolable, but would remarry to Princess Feodora of Hohenlohe-Langenburg in order to provide a mother to his remaining children. He succeeded his father as Duke of Saxe-Meiningen ten years after Charlotte's death, they had four children: Duke of Saxe-Meiningen. Prince Georg Albrecht. Princess Marie Elisabeth. An unnamed son. 21 June 1831 – 18 May 1850: Her Royal Highness Princess Charlotte of Prussia 18 May 1850 – 30 March 1855: Her Royal Highness The Hereditary Princess of Saxe-Meiningen Works citedEbel, Otto. Women Composers: A Biographical Handbook of Women's Work in Music. Chandler-Ebel. Koller, Ann Marie; the Theater Duke: George II of Saxe-Meiningen and the German Stage. Stanford University Press. ISBN 0-8047-1196-8. Lodge, Edmund; the Peerage, Knightage & Companionage of the British Empire. Hurst and Blackett. Osborne, John; the Meiningen Court Theatre, 1866-1890. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-30394-X. Walker, Alan. Hans Von Bulow: A Life and Times. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0195368680