Catherine of Saxony, Archduchess of Austria

For other people with the same name, see Catherine of Saxony (disambiguation).
Catherine of Saxony

Catherine of Saxony (24 July 1468, Grimma, Saxony 10 February 1524, Calenberg) was the second wife of Sigismund, Archduke of Austria and Regent of Tyrol.


Catherine was the eldest child of Albert III, Duke of Saxony and his wife Sidonie of Poděbrady. Her paternal grandparents were Frederick II, Elector of Saxony and Margaret of Austria, daughter of Ernest, Duke of Austria. Her maternal grandparents were George of Poděbrady and his first wife Kunigunde of Šternberk. Catherine had three surviving brothers George, Henry and Frederick.

At the age of 16, in 1484 in Innsbruck, Catherine became the second wife of the Archduke Sigismund, who was already 56 years old and was regarded as senile. The Archduke had previously been married to Eleanor of Scotland, who had left him no surviving children. Catherine and Sigismund had no children. Catherine played little part in the politics of Tyrol. A former lover Sigismund who was against the young bride falsely claimed in 1487 that Catherine was trying to poison her husband. The political style of the Archduke was no longer tenable, he was losing control of his Tyrolean Estate to Frederick III, Holy Roman Emperor. Therefore, constant quarrels with the Emperor followed because of the newly introduced limitations that the Archduke made. By 1490, Catherine had significantly less budget than before the limitations. In 1496 Siegmund died.

Catherine married soon after the Archdukes death in 1496/97 to Eric I, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg. The marriage produced one short-lived daughter, Anna Maria. Catherine died in 1524 and was buried in Minden. Eric remarried and had surviving children.

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