Karoline of Wartensleben

Karoline von Wartensleben
Spouse(s) Ernest II, Count of Lippe-Biesterfeld

Full name

Karoline Friederike Cäcilie Klothilde
Noble family von Wartensleben
Father Leopold Otto Frederick, Count von Wartensleben
Mother Mathilde Halbach
Born (1844-04-08)8 April 1844
Died 10 July 1905(1905-07-10) (aged 61)

Countess Karoline Friederike Cäcilie Klothilde von Wartensleben (6 April 1844 in Mannheim 10 July 1905 in Detmold) was a German noblewoman. She was a paternal great-great-grandmother of King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands. She was a daughter of the 1869 marriage of Count Leopold Otto Frederick von Wartensleben (1818-1846) with Mathilde Halbach (1822-1844), daughter of Arnold Halbach,[1] through this connection she was a first cousin of Gustav Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach.[2]


On 16 September 1869 in Neuhof in the Province of Posen, she married Ernest II, Count of Lippe-Biesterfeld (1842-1904), who was regent of Lippe from 1897 to 1904. In the Lippe succession dispute (1904–1905), Schaumburg-Lippe claimed that Karoline (who belonged to a non-reigning family of Germany's lower nobility, elevated to the rank of count in the 18th century) was not of high enough rank to be a legitimately dynastic wife that would have made her sons ineligible to succeed to the throne of Lippe.

On 25 October 1905 the German Empire's arbitration panel (Reichsgericht) ruled that, since an 1897 arbitration panel had concluded that until 1815 marriages between the House of Lippe and members of the simple untitled, but old, nobility were dynastic—having been banned neither by previous house law nor by any clear marital pattern to the contrary—and that no change in dynastic policy had been subsequently implemented, the 1869 marriage to the countess was dynastic. Thus her children with the regent, Count Ernest, were dynasts.[3]


Ernest and Karoline had six children; they were all titular counts and countesses of Lippe-Biesterfeld at birth; the ruling in 1905 made them princes and princesses of Lippe.

References and notes

  1. Genealogisches Handbuch des Adels, Fürstliche Häuser XIX. "Haus Lippe". C.A. Starke Verlag, 2011, p. 42 ISBN 978-3-7980-0849-6.
  2. http://www.genealogics.org/pedigree.php?personID=I00098690&tree=LEO
  3. Heraldica.org. Velde, François. House Laws of Lippe: The 1905 Verdict 2005. Retrieved 2012-05-31.
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