Tethart Philipp Christian Haag
Tethart Philipp Christian Haag was a Dutch artist and court painter to William V of Orange-Nassau and the director of cultural institutions in The Hague. YouthTethart Haag was the son of Johann David Christian Haag from Hesse-Kassel, who took him in 1747 to the Netherlands when he was employed there as court painter to Stadhouderlijk Hof in Leeuwarden; when Prince William IV was elevated to stadtholder in 1747 and moved to The Hague, Johann took his son with him to move there. Tethart was taught by his father in painting and in 1756 joined a painting society in The Hague called the Confrerie Pictura, where he registered in 1760 as a portrait and horse painter. Court PainterIn 1760 Tethart followed his deceased father as court painter to Stadtholder Prince William V. In that capacity he made an inventory of the paintings in the governor's court between 1763 and 1764. From Haag, alongside portraits of the governor, several other works depicted: stable interiors and driving schools, portraits of horses with or without driver and portraits of prominent people depicted on horseback.
A remarkable work of Haag is his painting of Wilhelmina of Prussia, Princess of Orange on a horse, which hangs in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. Contrary to tradition he did not picture her sitting with both legs on one side, but in the male position, customary for kings and emperors. Tethart Haag gave painting lessons to the princess, he made drawings of paintings by famous masters, including The Young Bull by Paulus Potter. Hague worked as an engraver and etcher. Prince William V GalleryAs court painter to Prince William V, Haag managed the collection of paintings by the governor and was his chief adviser in the foundation in 1774 of a stadtholder'Picture Gallery' at the Buitenhof in The Hague, he was thus the first director and curator of this first public museum in the Netherlands, which would be known as the Prince William V Gallery. His salary amounted to 200 guilders in 1783. However, he had access to a service property located on the first floor of the picture gallery on the Buitenhof. Director of Cultural InstitutionsIn addition to his work for the governor's court and as an artist, Haag held various posts at cultural institutions in The Hague.
He was chief of the Hague guild Confrerie Pictura and in 1788 he was appointed dean. He was director of the Hague Academy of Drawing. Tethart Philipp Christian Haag's paintings Haag, Tethart Philipp Christian at the Netherlands Institute for Art History
Frederick the Great
Frederick II ruled the Kingdom of Prussia from 1740 until 1786, the longest reign of any Hohenzollern king. His most significant accomplishments during his reign included his military victories, his reorganization of Prussian armies, his patronage of the arts and the Enlightenment and his final success against great odds in the Seven Years' War. Frederick was the last Hohenzollern monarch titled King in Prussia and declared himself King of Prussia after achieving sovereignty over most Prussian lands in 1772. Prussia had increased its territories and became a leading military power in Europe under his rule, he became known as Frederick the Great and was nicknamed Der Alte Fritz by the Prussian people and the rest of Germany. In his youth, Frederick was more interested in philosophy than the art of war. Nonetheless, upon ascending to the Prussian throne he attacked Austria and claimed Silesia during the Silesian Wars, winning military acclaim for himself and Prussia. Toward the end of his reign, Frederick physically connected most of his realm by acquiring Polish territories in the First Partition of Poland.
He was an influential military theorist whose analysis emerged from his extensive personal battlefield experience and covered issues of strategy, tactics and logistics. Considering himself "the first servant of the state", Frederick was a proponent of enlightened absolutism, he modernized the Prussian bureaucracy and civil service and pursued religious policies throughout his realm that ranged from tolerance to segregation. He reformed the judicial system and made it possible for men not of noble status to become judges and senior bureaucrats. Frederick encouraged immigrants of various nationalities and faiths to come to Prussia, although he enacted oppressive measures against Polish Catholic subjects in West Prussia. Frederick supported arts and philosophers he favored as well as allowing complete freedom of the press and literature. Frederick is buried at Sanssouci in Potsdam; because he died childless, Frederick was succeeded by his nephew, Frederick William II, son of his brother, Augustus William.
Nearly all 19th-century German historians made Frederick into a romantic model of a glorified warrior, praising his leadership, administrative efficiency, devotion to duty and success in building up Prussia to a great power in Europe. Historian Leopold von Ranke was unstinting in his praise of Frederick's "heroic life, inspired by great ideas, filled with feats of arms... immortalized by the raising of the Prussian state to the rank of a power". Johann Gustav Droysen was more extolling. Frederick remained an admired historical figure through the German Empire's defeat in World War I; the Nazis glorified him as a great German leader pre-figuring Adolf Hitler, who idolized him. Associations with him became far less favorable after the fall of the Nazis due to his status as one of their symbols. However, by the 21st century a re-evaluation of his legacy as a great general and enlightened monarch returned opinion of him to favour. Frederick, the son of Frederick William I and his wife, Sophia Dorothea of Hanover, was born in Berlin on 24 January 1712.
He was baptised with only one name and was not given any other names. The birth of Frederick was welcomed by his grandfather, Frederick I, with more than usual pleasure, as his two previous grandsons had both died in infancy. With the death of his father in 1713, Frederick William became King in Prussia, thus making young Frederick the crown prince; the new king wished for his daughters to be educated not as royalty, but as simple folk. He had been educated by a Frenchwoman, Madame de Montbail, who became Madame de Rocoulle, he wished that she educate his children. Frederick William I, popularly dubbed as the Soldier-King, had created a large and powerful army led by his famous "Potsdam Giants" managed his treasury finances and developed a strong, centralized government. However, he possessed a violent temper and ruled Brandenburg-Prussia with absolute authority; as Frederick grew, his preference for music and French culture clashed with his father's militarism, resulting in Frederick William beating and humiliating him.
In contrast, Frederick's mother Sophia was polite and learned. Her father, George Louis of Brunswick-Lüneburg, succeeded to the British throne as King George I in 1714. Frederick was brought up by Huguenot governesses and tutors and learned French and German simultaneously. In spite of his father's desire that his education be religious and pragmatic, the young Frederick, with the help of his tutor Jacques Duhan, procured for himself a three thousand volume secret library of poetry and Roman classics, French philosophy to supplement his official lessons. Although Frederick William I was raised a Calvinist, he feared. To avoid the possibility of Frederick being motivated by the same concerns, the king ordered that his heir not be taught about predestination. Although Frederick was irreligious, he to some extent appeared to adopt this tenet of Calvinism; some scholars have speculated. In the mid-1720s, a double marriage was proposed. Queen Sophia Dorothea attempted to arrange Frederick and his sister Wilhelmine with Amelia and Frederick, the children of her brother, King George II of Great Britain.
Fearing an alliance between Prussia and Great Britain, Field Marshal von Seckendorff, the Austrian ambassador in Berlin, bribed the Prussian Minister of War, Field Marshal von Grumbkow, the Prussian ambassador in Lon
Alexander I of Russia
Alexander I was the Emperor of Russia between 1801 and 1825. He was Sophie Dorothea of Württemberg. Alexander was the first king of Congress Poland, reigning from 1815 to 1825, as well as the first Russian Grand Duke of Finland, reigning from 1809 to 1825. Born in Saint Petersburg to Grand Duke Paul Petrovich Emperor Paul I, he succeeded to the throne after his father was murdered, he ruled Russia during the chaotic period of the Napoleonic Wars. As prince and during the early years of his reign, Alexander used liberal rhetoric, but continued Russia's absolutist policies in practice. In the first years of his reign, he initiated some minor social reforms and major, liberal educational reforms, such as building more universities. Alexander appointed the son of a village priest, as one of his closest advisors; the Collegia was abolished and replaced by the State Council, created to improve legislation. Plans were made to set up a parliament and sign a constitution. In foreign policy, he changed Russia's position relative to France four times between 1804 and 1812 among neutrality and alliance.
In 1805 he joined Britain in the War of the Third Coalition against Napoleon, but after suffering massive defeats at the battles of Austerlitz and Friedland he switched sides and formed an alliance with Napoleon by the Treaty of Tilsit and joined Napoleon's Continental System. He fought a small-scale naval war against Britain between 1807 and 1812 as well as a short war against Sweden after Sweden's refusal to join the Continental System. Alexander and Napoleon hardly agreed regarding Poland, the alliance collapsed by 1810. Alexander's greatest triumph came in 1812 when Napoleon's invasion of Russia proved to be a catastrophic disaster for the French; as part of the winning coalition against Napoleon, he gained some spoils in Poland. He formed the Holy Alliance to suppress revolutionary movements in Europe that he saw as immoral threats to legitimate Christian monarchs, he helped Austria's Klemens von Metternich in suppressing all liberal movements. In the second half of his reign he was arbitrary and fearful of plots against him.
He purged schools of foreign teachers, as education became more religiously oriented as well as politically conservative. Speransky was replaced as advisor with the strict artillery inspector Aleksey Arakcheyev, who oversaw the creation of military settlements. Alexander died of typhus in December 1825 while on a trip to southern Russia, he left no children. Neither of his brothers wanted to become emperor. After a period of great confusion, he was succeeded by his younger brother, Nicholas I. Alexander was born on 23 December 1777 in Saint Petersburg, he and his younger brother Constantine were raised by their grandmother, Catherine; some sources allege. From the free-thinking atmosphere of the court of Catherine and his Swiss tutor, Frédéric-César de La Harpe, he imbibed the principles of Rousseau's gospel of humanity, but from his military governor, Nikolay Saltykov, he imbibed the traditions of Russian autocracy. Andrey Afanasyevich Samborsky, whom his grandmother chose for his religious instruction, was an atypical, unbearded Orthodox priest.
Samborsky had long lived in England and taught Alexander excellent English uncommon for potential Russian autocrats at the time. On 9 October 1793, when Alexander was still 15 years old, he married 14-year-old Princess Louise of Baden, who took the name Elizabeth Alexeievna, his grandmother was the one. Until his grandmother's death, he was walking the line of allegiance between his grandmother and his father, his steward Nikolai Saltykov helped him navigate the political landscape, engendering dislike for his grandmother and dread in dealing with his father. Catherine had the Alexander Palace built for the couple; this did nothing to help his relationship with her, as Catherine would go out of her way to amuse them with dancing and parties, which annoyed his wife. Living at the palace put pressure on him to perform as a husband, when he only had a brother's love for the Grand Duchess, he began to sympathize more with his father, as he saw visiting his father's fiefdom at Gatchina as a relief from the ostentatious court of the empress.
There, they wore simple Prussian military uniforms, instead of the gaudy clothing popular at the French court they had to wear when visiting Catherine. So, visiting the tsarevich did not come without a bit of travail. Paul liked to have his guests perform military drills, which he pushed upon his sons Alexander and Constantine, he was prone to fits of temper, he went into fits of rage when events did not go his way. Catherine's death in November 1796, before she could appoint Alexander as her successor, brought his father, Paul, to the throne. Alexander disliked him as tsar more than he did his grandmother, he wrote that Russia had become a "plaything for the insane" and that "absolute power disrupts everything". It is that seeing two previous rulers abuse their autocratic powers in such a way pushed him to be one of the more progressive Romanov tsars of the 19th and 20th centuries. Among the rest of the country, Paul was unpopular, he accused his wife of conspiring to become another
Wilhelmine of Prussia, Queen of the Netherlands
Friederike Luise Wilhelmine of Prussia was the first wife of King William I of the Netherlands and so the first Queen of the Netherlands. Princess Wilhelmine was born in Potsdam, she was the fourth child of eight born to King Frederick William II of Prussia and Queen Frederica Louisa. Her upbringing was dominated by the strict regime of her great-uncle, Frederick the Great, but in general little is known about her youth. On 1 October 1791, she married her cousin William of the Netherlands, son of Stadtholder William V, Prince of Orange and Princess Wilhelmina of Prussia, in Berlin; the marriage was arranged as a part of an alliance between the House of Orange and Prussia, but it was in fact, a love match and became happy. The young couple went to live at Noordeinde Palace in The Hague. In 1795, the French invaded the Dutch Republic, the princely family went into exile, they first stayed in England, from 1796 in Berlin. In 1806, Wilhelmine was again forced to flee from the French army, settled under difficult economic circumstances in Poland.
The princess returned to The Hague in the beginning of 1814. Princess Wilhelmine became Queen of the Netherlands in 1815. At the time, the Netherlands included the present-day country of Belgium. Queen Wilhelmine was modest and stayed in the background, she did not play any dominant role as queen, she was not a popular queen, was criticised for isolating the royal family. She was interested in painting, attended exhibitions, helped to protect museums and support artists, she was herself a student of art and regarded as a talented dilettante being inducted as an honorary member to the Royal Academy of Fine Arts. Beginning in 1820, her health worsened, after 1829, she was seen in public, she died at Noordeinde Palace in The Hague in 1837, aged 62, is entombed in the New Church in Delft. Wilhelmina van Pruisen Royal House of Prussia at the Wayback Machine Royal House of the Netherlands and Grand-Ducal House of Luxembourg
The Batavian Revolution was a time of political and cultural turmoil at the end of the 18th century that marked the end of the Dutch Republic and saw the proclamation of the Batavian Republic. The period of Dutch history that followed the revolution is referred to as the "Batavian-French era" though the time spanned was only 20 years, of which three were under French occupation. By the end of the 18th century, the Netherlands found themselves in a deep economic crisis, caused by the devastating Fourth Anglo-Dutch War. During this time, the banks of the Dutch Republic held much of the world's capital; the government-sponsored banks owned up to 40% of Great Britain's national debt. The people of the Netherlands grew discontent with the authoritarian regime of the stadtholder, William V; this concentration of wealth led to the formation of the Dutch Patriots by a minor Dutch noble named Joan van der Capellen tot den Pol, who were seeking to reduce the amount of power held by the stadtholder. Thus, a division emerged between the Orangists, who supported the stadtholder, the Patriots who, inspired by the ideals of the Enlightenment, desired a more democratic government and a more equal society.
The Patriots built support from most of the middle-class, founded militias of armed civilians which between 1783 and 1787 managed to take over several cities and regions in an effort to force new elections which would oust the old government officials. The Patriots held Holland and the city of Utrecht, while the Orangists held the states of Guelders and Utrecht. In 1785, stadtholder William V fled his palace in the west of the country for Nijmegen in the east, as the States of Holland were not willing to send their troops to fight the Patriots. In May 1787, the stadholder's troops were defeated by the militia of Utrecht near Vreeswijk; when Princess Wilhelmina was stopped by patriot militia near Goejanverwellesluis on June 28, 1787, she applied to her brother Frederick William II of Prussia for help. On September 13 a Prussian army of 20,000 men under the command of Duke of Brunswick crossed the border; the fortress of Vianen was deserted, the city of Utrecht opened its gates. At the fortress of Woerden preparations for defense were made, but there was no actual resistance when the Prussians arrived.
In Amsterdam several houses of patriot regents were plundered by mobs. The stadholder returned to Gravenhage, Amsterdam, the last city to hold out, surrendered on October 10; the Patriots continued urging citizens to resist the government by distributing pamphlets, creating "Patriot Clubs" and holding public demonstrations. The government responded by pillaging the towns. Most Patriots went into exile in France, while Orangists strengthened their grip on Dutch government chiefly through the Grand Pensionary Laurens Pieter van de Spiegel; the restoration was temporary, however. Only two years the French Revolution began, which embraced many of the political ideas that the Patriots had espoused in their own revolt; the Patriots enthusiastically supported the Revolution, when the French revolutionary armies started spreading it, the Patriots joined in, hoping to liberate their own country from its authoritarian yoke. The Stadtholder joined the ill-fated First Coalition of countries in their attempt to subdue the anti-Austrian French First Republic.
This War of the First Coalition proceeded disastrously for the Stadtholder's forces, in the severe winter of 1794/95 a French army under general Charles Pichegru, with a Dutch contingent under general Herman Willem Daendels, crossed the great frozen rivers that traditionally protected the Netherlands from invasion. Aided by the fact that a substantial proportion of the Dutch population looked favourably upon the French incursion, considered it a liberation, the French were able to break the resistance of the forces of the Stadtholder, his Austrian and British allies. However, in many cities revolution broke out before the French arrived and Revolutionary Committees took over the city governments, the national government also; the States of Holland and West Friesland, for instance, were abolished and replaced with the Provisional Representatives of the People of Holland The Batavian Revolution ended with the proclamation of the Batavian Republic in 1795. William was forced to flee to England, where he issued the Kew Letters proclaiming that all Dutch colonies were to fall under British rule, as they had declared war on the Batavian Republic.
A number of these colonies, such as Sri Lanka and the Cape Colony, never returned to Dutch rule, although the Cape did so temporarily between 1803 and 1806. Several coups followed in 1801 and 1805 which brought different groups of Patriots to power. Though the French presented themselves as liberators, they behaved like conquerors; the Batavian Republic saw its end in 1806, when the Kingdom of Holland was founded, with Napoleon's brother, Louis Napoleon as King of Holland. In 1810, the area was annexed into the First French Empire. In 1813, the Netherlands regained their independence, with William's son William Frederick as sovereign prince. Batavian Revolution in Amsterdam Danielle Aucoin; the Dutch Patriot Revolution 1780 – 1787:Continuity or Change? The Patriots, 1787 The Prussian Invasion of the Netherlands in 1787 Klein, S. R. E. Patriots Republikanisme. Politieke cultuur in Nederland. Leeb, I. L; the Ideological Origins of the Batavian Revolution. Verweij, G. Geschiedenis van Nederland. Levensverhaal van zijn bevolking
Frederick William I of Prussia
Frederick William I, known as the "Soldier King", was the King in Prussia and Elector of Brandenburg from 1713 until his death in 1740, as well as Prince of Neuchâtel. He was succeeded by Frederick the Great, he was born in Berlin to Sophia Charlotte of Hanover. During his first years, he was raised by the Huguenot governess Marthe de Roucoulle, his father had acquired the title King for the margraves of Brandenburg. On ascending the throne in 1713 the new King sold most of his fathers' horses and furniture. Throughout his reign, Frederick William was characterized by his frugal and militaristic lifestyle, as well as his devout Calvinist faith, he practiced rigid management of the treasury, never started a war, led a simple and austere lifestyle, in contrast to the lavish court his father had presided over. At his death, Prussia had a sound exchequer and a full treasury, in contrast to the other German states. Frederick William I did much to improve Prussia economically and militarily, he replaced mandatory military service among the middle class with an annual tax, he established schools and hospitals.
The king encouraged reclaimed marshes, stored grain in good times and sold it in bad times. He dictated the manual of Regulations for State Officials, containing 35 chapters and 297 paragraphs in which every public servant in Prussia could find his duties set out: a minister or councillor failing to attend a committee meeting, for example, would lose six months' pay. In short, Frederick William I concerned himself with every aspect of his small country, ruling an absolute monarchy with great energy and skill. In 1732, the king invited the Salzburg Protestants to settle in East Prussia, depopulated by plague in 1709. Under the terms of the Peace of Augsburg, the Prince-Archbishop of Salzburg could require his subjects to practice the Catholic faith, but Protestants had the right to emigrate to a Protestant state. Prussian commissioners accompanied 20,000 Protestants to their new homes on the other side of Germany. Frederick William I welcomed the first group of migrants and sang Protestant hymns with them.
Frederick William intervened in the Great Northern War, allied with Peter the Great of Russia, in order to gain a small portion of Swedish Pomerania. More aided by his close friend Prince Leopold of Anhalt-Dessau, the "Soldier-King" made considerable reforms to the Prussian army's training and conscription program—introducing the canton system, increasing the Prussian infantry's rate of fire through the introduction of the iron ramrod. Frederick William's reforms left his son Frederick with the most formidable army in Europe, which Frederick used to increase Prussia's power; the observation that "the pen is mightier than the sword" has sometimes been attributed to him. Although a effective ruler, Frederick William had a perpetually short temper which sometimes drove him to physically attack servants with a cane at the slightest provocation, his violent, harsh nature was further exacerbated by his inherited porphyritic disease, which gave him gout and frequent crippling stomach pains. He had a notable contempt for France, would sometimes fly into a rage at the mere mention of that country, although this did not stop him from encouraging the immigration of French Huguenot refugees to Prussia.
Frederick William was interred at the Garrison Church in Potsdam. During World War II, in order to protect it from advancing allied forces, Hitler ordered the king's coffin, as well as those of Frederick the Great and Paul von Hindenburg, into hiding, first to Berlin and to a salt mine outside of Bernterode; the coffins were discovered by occupying American Forces, who re-interred the bodies in St. Elisabeth's Church in Marburg in 1946. In 1953 the coffin was moved to Burg Hohenzollern, where it remained until 1991, when it was laid to rest on the steps of the altar in the Kaiser Friedrich Mausoleum in the Church of Peace on the palace grounds of Sanssouci; the original black marble sarcophagus collapsed at Burg Hohenzollern—the current one is a copper copy. His eldest surviving son was Frederick II, born in 1712. Frederick William wanted him to become a fine soldier; as a small child, Fritz was awakened each morning by the firing of a cannon. At the age of 6, he was given his own regiment of children to drill as cadets, a year he was given a miniature arsenal.
The love and affection Frederick William had for his heir was soon destroyed due to their different personalities. Frederick William ordered Fritz to undergo a minimal education, live a simple Protestant lifestyle, focus on the Army and statesmanship as he had. However, the intellectual Fritz was more interested in music and French culture, which were forbidden by his father as decadent and unmanly; as Fritz's defiance for his father's rules increased, Frederick William would beat or humiliate Fritz. Fritz was beaten for wearing gloves in cold weather. After the prince attempted to flee to England with his tutor, Hans Hermann von Katte, the enraged King had Katte beheaded before the eyes of the prince, who himself was court-ma
George I of Great Britain
George I was King of Great Britain and Ireland from 1 August 1714 and ruler of the Duchy and Electorate of Brunswick-Lüneburg in the Holy Roman Empire from 1698 until his death in 1727. George was born in Hanover and inherited the titles and lands of the Duchy of Brunswick-Lüneburg from his father and uncles. A succession of European wars expanded his German domains during his lifetime, in 1708 he was ratified as prince-elector of Hanover. At the age of 54, after the death of his second cousin Anne, Queen of Great Britain, George ascended the British throne as the first monarch of the House of Hanover. Although over 50 Roman Catholics were closer to Anne by primogeniture, the Act of Settlement 1701 prohibited Catholics from inheriting the British throne. In reaction, Jacobites attempted to depose George and replace him with Anne's Catholic half-brother, James Francis Edward Stuart, but their attempts failed. During George's reign, the powers of the monarchy diminished and Britain began a transition to the modern system of cabinet government led by a prime minister.
Towards the end of his reign, actual political power was held by Robert Walpole, now recognised as Britain's first de facto prime minister. George died of a stroke on a trip to his native Hanover, he was the last British monarch to be buried outside the United Kingdom. George was born on 28 May 1660 in the city of Hanover in the Duchy of Brunswick-Lüneburg in the Holy Roman Empire, he was the eldest son of Ernest Augustus, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg, his wife, Sophia of the Palatinate. Sophia was the granddaughter of King James I of England through Elizabeth of Bohemia. For the first year of his life, George was the only heir to the German territories of his father and three childless uncles. George's brother, Frederick Augustus, was born in 1661, the two boys were brought up together, their mother was absent for a year during a long convalescent holiday in Italy, but corresponded with her sons' governess and took a great interest in their upbringing more so upon her return. Sophia bore Ernest Augustus a daughter.
In her letters, Sophia describes George as a responsible, conscientious child who set an example to his younger brothers and sisters. By 1675 George's eldest uncle had died without issue, but his remaining two uncles had married, putting George's inheritance in jeopardy as his uncles' estates might pass to their own sons, should they have had any, instead of to George. George's father took him hunting and riding, introduced him to military matters. In 1679 another uncle died unexpectedly without sons, Ernest Augustus became reigning Duke of Calenberg-Göttingen, with his capital at Hanover. George's surviving uncle, George William of Celle, had married his mistress in order to legitimise his only daughter, Sophia Dorothea, but looked unlikely to have any further children. Under Salic law, where inheritance of territory was restricted to the male line, the succession of George and his brothers to the territories of their father and uncle now seemed secure. In 1682, the family agreed to adopt the principle of primogeniture, meaning George would inherit all the territory and not have to share it with his brothers.
The same year, George married his first cousin, Sophia Dorothea of Celle, thereby securing additional incomes that would have been outside Salic laws. The marriage of state was arranged as it ensured a healthy annual income and assisted the eventual unification of Hanover and Celle, his mother was at first against the marriage because she looked down on Sophia Dorothea's mother, because she was concerned by Sophia Dorothea's legitimated status. She was won over by the advantages inherent in the marriage. In 1683, George and his brother, Frederick Augustus, served in the Great Turkish War at the Battle of Vienna, Sophia Dorothea bore George a son, George Augustus; the following year, Frederick Augustus was informed of the adoption of primogeniture, meaning he would no longer receive part of his father's territory as he had expected. It led to a breach between father and son, between the brothers, that lasted until Frederick Augustus's death in battle in 1690. With the imminent formation of a single Hanoverian state, the Hanoverians' continuing contributions to the Empire's wars, Ernest Augustus was made an Elector of the Holy Roman Empire in 1692.
George's prospects were now better than as the sole heir to his father's electorate and his uncle's duchy. Sophia Dorothea had a second child, a daughter named after her, in 1687, but there were no other pregnancies; the couple became estranged—George preferred the company of his mistress, Melusine von der Schulenburg, Sophia Dorothea, had her own romance with the Swedish Count Philip Christoph von Königsmarck. Threatened with the scandal of an elopement, the Hanoverian court, including George's brothers and mother, urged the lovers to desist, but to no avail. According to diplomatic sources from Hanover's enemies, in July 1694 the Swedish count was killed with the connivance of George, his body thrown into the river Leine weighted with stones; the murder was claimed to have been committed by four of Ernest Augustus's courtiers, one of whom was paid the enormous sum of 150,000 thalers, about one hundred times the annual salary of the highest paid minister. Rumours supposed t