Walburgis, Countess of Rietberg

Walburgis, Countess of Rietberg

Armgard and Walburgis of Rietberg, detail of a family portrait by Hermann tom Ring
Spouse(s) Enno III, Count of East Frisia
Noble family House of Werl-Arnsberg
Father John II, Count of Rietberg
Mother Agnes of Bentheim-Steinfurt
Born 1555 or 1556
Died 26 May 1586(1586-05-26) (aged 30)

Countess Walburgis of Rietberg (1555/56, Rietberg 26 May 1586, Esens) was 1565-1576 and 1584-1586 Countess of Rietberg.


Walburgis was the second daughter of Count John II of Rietberg and Agnes of Bentheim-Steinfurt in Rietberg. After the birth of John Edzard, her youngest child and only son, Walburgis needed tot recover and moved from Esens to Wittmund. A short time later, she moved back to Esens, where she died on 26 May 1586 at the age of 30. She was buried in the St. Magnus Church in Esens. With her death, the Rietberg line of the House of Werl-Arnsberg died out.

After Walburgis's death rumours that she had been handed a poisoned beer soup. Under torture, one of the three women suspected of the crime confessed. Although the doctors certified a natural death, the three suspects were burned on the stake on 11 May 1586.

Marriage and descendants

Count Enno III of East Frisia, Walburgis's husband

On 1 May 1577, at the age of 21 years, Walburgis was engaged to Count Enno III of East Frisia, who was then 14 years old. The wedding took place on 28 January 1581, when Enno was 18. From this marriage, she had three children:

married on 4 March 1601 her uncle Count John III of East Frisia (born: 1566 – died: 29 September 1625)
married on 15 August 1603 Prince Gundakar of Liechtenstein (born: 30 January 1580 – died: 5 August 1658)
Walburgis, Countess of Rietberg
House of Werl-Arnsberg
Born: 1555 or 1556 Died: 26 May 1586
Preceded by
Countess of Rietberg
1565–1576 and 1584–1586
Succeeded by
Sabina Catherine
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