Sophia Dorothea (1666-1726)
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Sophia Dorothea (1666-1726)

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If what I am accused of is true, I am unworthy of his bed; and if it is false, he is unworthy of mine.
Sophia, on refusing to be reinstated as Queen after being held in prison by George - he discovered she was having an affair with Count Philip von Königsmark.

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Sophia Dorothea (1666-1726)

Sophia Dorothea of Zelle was married in 1682 to her cousin the Hanoverian George I, and in contrast to him was quite beautiful. They had two children, firstly George in 1683 who was to succeed his father, and then a daughter named after her, who was to become the mother of Frederick the Great of Prussia. George was so unfaithful to Sophia that she had an affair with Philip von Königsmark, a Swedish Count. When George discovered this, he had her lover murdered, possibly in her presence, and after divorcing her, locked Sophia up in the castle at Ahlden for the rest of her life.

George left for England with two awful mistresses and acquired another soon after, but later seemed to repent of his treatment of Sophia and offered to free her and bring her back as his queen. She is reported to have replied 'If what I am accused of is true, I am unworthy of his bed, and if it is false, he is unworthy of mine', so she refused and died in prison in 1726. George left her unburied for six months, but eventually relented and left England for Hanover to bury her, only to die en route in Osnabrück in the castle where he had been born.


My illness only comes from loving you, and I do not want to be cured of it.
- Letter to George I, quoted in Lives of the Hanoverian Queens of England, 1909. Advanced Category Search

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