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Sophie in Weimar. A Princess of Orange in Germany.

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Original Language: Dutch | 704 pages | May 2011 | 1 reprint

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The liberal Sophie of the Netherlands (1824-1897) is the youngest child of King William II and Queen Anna Pavlovna.

Due to her modest nature, the Grand Duchess Sophie Von Sachsen Weimar Eisenach has been almost entirely overlooked in the Dutch-German history.

And yet this humble princess of Orange was a woman of world-class culture, who has had more significance than whichever member of the royal Orange family.

At the age of eighteen she is married to her full cousin, the Grand Duke Carl Alexander. Thus she arrives in Weimar, which since Goethe’s death lives on the glory of yesteryear. During their reign in Weimar, Carl Alexander and Sophie commit themselves fully to promoting the visual arts, music, theater and literature in their court.

It is indeed in Weimar that Sophie explores her great talents: she receives Franz Liszt, Richard Wagner, Hans Christian Andersen and many national and international painters at her court, and conducts pioneering work in the social field. During their reign in Weimar, Carl Alexander and Sophie commit themselves fully to promoting the visual arts, music, theater and literature in their court.

In the mean time, she continues to care for her family in The Hague, where the Orange Dynasty is shaken by the misconduct of her eldest brother, King William III.

Bitterly disappointed in her married life and by her children’s marriages, Sophie receives the coveted legacy of Goethe. She then acquires worldwide fame thanks to the Goethe-Schiller Archive and the Sophienausgabe which she both had built in Weimar.

After years of study in domestic and foreign archives, Thera Coppens sheds light on shocking facts about the eventful life of Grand Duchess Sophie.

This book not only rehabilitates this impressive woman, but it also enriches the German-Dutch history as it took place between The Hague, Brussels, and Weimar.