Philippine Welser

Philippine Welser, Portrait on Castle Ambras
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Philippine Welser (1527 24 April 1580) was the morganatic wife of Ferdinand II, Archduke of Austria. She was granted the titles Baroness of Zinnenburg, Margravine of Burgau, Landgravine of Mellenburg and Countess of Oberhohenberg and Niederhohenberg.

She was born in Augsburg. Her family, the Welsers of Augsburg, were merchants and financiers of European significance and great wealth. Her uncle Bartholomeus V. Welser received Venezuela as security for a loan from the King of Spain in 1528, and the family thus became rulers of the colony. Already at a young age, she was renowned for both her beauty and her learning. She died at Schloss Ambras, Innsbruck in Tyrol.

She was the mother of Margrave Andrew of Burgau, who became a Cardinal, and Charles, Margrave of Burgau, who became a noted General. After her death, her husband remarried to Anne Juliana Gonzaga and became the father of Anna of Tyrol, who would become Holy Roman Empress.



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