Frederika Louisa of Hesse-Darmstadt
Frederika of Hesse-Darmstadt (Friederike Luise; 16 October 1751 – 25 February 1805) was Queen consort
Queen consort
A queen consort is the wife of a reigning king. A queen consort usually shares her husband's rank and holds the feminine equivalent of the king's monarchical titles. Historically, queens consort do not share the king regnant's political and military powers. Most queens in history were queens consort...

 of the Kingdom of Prussia
Kingdom of Prussia
The Kingdom of Prussia was a German kingdom from 1701 to 1918. Until the defeat of Germany in World War I, it comprised almost two-thirds of the area of the German Empire...

 as the second wife of Frederick William II of Prussia
Frederick William II of Prussia
Frederick William II was the King of Prussia, reigning from 1786 until his death. He was in personal union the Prince-Elector of Brandenburg and the sovereign prince of the Principality of Neuchâtel.-Early life:...



Frederika Louisa was the daughter of Ludwig IX, Landgrave of Hesse-Darmstadt, and Caroline of Zweibrücken. She was born in Prenzlau
Prenzlau , a city in the Uckermark District of Brandenburg in Germany, had a population of about 21,000 in 2005.-International relations:Prenzlau is twinned with: Uster, Switzerland Barlinek, Poland Świdwin, Poland...

. She was the sister of Grand Duchess Louise of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach, as well as Grand Duke Louis I of Hesse
Louis I, Grand Duke of Hesse
Louis I, Grand Duke of Hesse was Landgrave of Hesse-Darmstadt and later the first Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine....



She and Frederick William were married on 14 July 1769 at the Charlottenburg Palace
Charlottenburg Palace
Charlottenburg Palace is the largest palace in Berlin, Germany, and the only royal residency in the city dating back to the time of the Hohenzollern family. It is located in the Charlottenburg district of the Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf burough.The palace was built at the end of the 17th century...

, immediately after his divorce from Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Lüneburg
Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Lüneburg
Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel , was the first wife of Prince Frederick William, her cousin and the future king Frederick William II of Prussia....

. Frederick William called her his "Hessische Lieschen", or "Hessian Lizzie".

She became queen of Prussia upon her husband's accession to the throne in 1786, and kept her position for eleven years. The marriage was not happy, and Fredrick had numerous lovers, most notably Wilhelmine von Lichtenau
Wilhelmine von Lichtenau
Wilhelmine, Gräfin von Lichtenau, born as Wilhelmine Enke, also spelled Encke, , was the official mistress of King Frederick William II of Prussia from 1769 until 1797 and was elevated by him into the nobility...

, with whom he had a relationship from the same year he married Frederika Louise until his death. In 1787, her spouse committed bigamy
In cultures that practice marital monogamy, bigamy is the act of entering into a marriage with one person while still legally married to another. Bigamy is a crime in most western countries, and when it occurs in this context often neither the first nor second spouse is aware of the other...

 by marrying her lady-in-waiting
A lady-in-waiting is a female personal assistant at a royal court, attending on a queen, a princess, or a high-ranking noblewoman. Historically, in Europe a lady-in-waiting was often a noblewoman from a family highly thought of in good society, but was of lower rank than the woman on whom she...

 Julie von Voß
Julie von Voß
Julie Amalie Elisabeth von Voss was a German lady-in-waiting and a bigamous morganatic spouse of King Frederick William II of Prussia....

, and in 1790, he committed bigamy again by marrying her lady-in-waiting Sophie von Dönhoff
Sophie von Dönhoff
Sophie Friederike Juliane von Dönhoff was a German lady-in-waiting and a morganatic spouse by bigamy to King Frederick William II of Prussia....

. Queen Frederika Louisa was not considered attractive and has been described as eccentric. It was claimed that she saw ghost
In traditional belief and fiction, a ghost is the soul or spirit of a deceased person or animal that can appear, in visible form or other manifestation, to the living. Descriptions of the apparition of ghosts vary widely from an invisible presence to translucent or barely visible wispy shapes, to...

s and apparitions, and for this reason she kept reversed hours, sleeping by day and waking by night, a behaviour which worsened after Frederick William died. Frederika Louisa was noted for her great generosity, especially to those in need.

From 1788, she spent her summers in Freienwalde, which greatly contributed to the economic and cultural development of the city. Especially as a Queen Dowager, several buildings were constructed in the city to house her and her court during their stays. In 1799, a summer palace was built for her there by David Gilly
David Gilly
David Gilly was a German architect and architecture-tutor in Prussia, the father of the architect Friedrich Gilly.-Life:...


The Swedish Princess Hedwig Elizabeth Charlotte described her at the time of her visit in 1798:
The Queen Dowager had invited us at déjeuner, and we left for Montbijou, a very simple manor slightly outside of Berlin, where she resides all year. It is sweet and well tendered but terribly small. She hade it built herself as well as the parc and the garden. She is a small, very fat, middle age lady, who walks so crocked that she looks like and old woman. You could mistake her for one of these fairies from an ancient tale. She is very polite and talkative and shines of a goodness which gives the witness of a kind heart and a noble characther.

She became a widow in 1797. During the summer she lived in Bad Freienwalde
Bad Freienwalde
Bad Freienwalde is a spa town in the Märkisch-Oderland district in Brandenburg, Germany. It is situated on an old branch of the Oder river at the northwestern rim of the Oderbruch basin, east of Eberswalde, and northeast of Berlin, near the border with Poland...

 where she was often visited by her children and grandchildren and died in Berlin
Berlin is the capital city of Germany and is one of the 16 states of Germany. With a population of 3.45 million people, Berlin is Germany's largest city. It is the second most populous city proper and the seventh most populous urban area in the European Union...

 in 1805 having suffered a stroke.


  1. Frederick William III of Prussia
    Frederick William III of Prussia
    Frederick William III was king of Prussia from 1797 to 1840. He was in personal union the sovereign prince of the Principality of Neuchâtel .-Early life:...

     (1770-1840) married Louise of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
    Louise of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
    Duchess Louise of Mecklenburg-Strelitz was Queen consort of Prussia as the wife of King Frederick William III...

     and had issue.
  2. Princess Christine (1772-1773)
  3. Prince Louis
    Prince Louis Charles of Prussia
    Prince Louis Charles of Prussia was the second son and third child of Frederick William II of Prussia and Frederika Louisa of Hesse-Darmstadt.-Marriage and issue:...

     (1773-1796) married Frederica of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
    Frederica of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
    Frederica of Mecklenburg-Strelitz , Duchess of Cumberland and later Queen of Hanover , was the consort of Ernest Augustus I of Hanover, the fifth son and eighth child of George III and Queen Charlotte.She was born in the Altes Palais of Hanover as the fifth...

     and had issue.
  4. Princess Wilhelmina (1774-1837) married William I of the Netherlands
    William I of the Netherlands
    William I Frederick, born Willem Frederik Prins van Oranje-Nassau , was a Prince of Orange and the first King of the Netherlands and Grand Duke of Luxembourg....

     and had issue.
  5. stillborn son (1777)
  6. Princess Augusta of Prussia
    Princess Augusta of Prussia
    Princess Augusta of Prussia was a German salonist and electress consort of Hesse. She was the third daughter and fifth child of Frederick William II of Prussia and Frederika Louisa of Hesse-Darmstadt. She was the first consort of William II, Elector of Hesse. Augusta was a talented painter...

     (1780-1841), wife of William II, Elector of Hesse
    William II, Elector of Hesse
    -Biography:William was the eldest surviving son of William I, Elector of Hesse and Wilhelmina Caroline of Denmark and Norway. He succeeded as Elector of Hesse on his father's death in 1821.-Marriage and issue:On 13 February 1797 in Berlin, William married Princess Augusta of Prussia, fourth...

  7. Prince Henry of Prussia (1781-1846)
  8. Prince William (1783-1851) married Marianne of Hesse-Homburg
    Landgravine Marie Anna of Hesse-Homburg
    Princess Marianne of Prussia, born Marie Anne Amalie, Landgravine of Hesse-Homburg was a German noble...

     and had issue.

Titles and styles

  • 16 October 1751 - 14 July 1769 Her Serene Highness Princess (Landgravine) Friederike of Hesse-Darmstadt
  • 14 July 1769 - 17 August 1786 Her Royal Highness The Crown Princess of Prussia
  • 17 August 1786 - 16 November 1797 Her Majesty The Queen of Prussia
  • 16 November 1797 - 25 February 1805 Her Majesty The Dowager Queen of Prussia


External links



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