Julius Henry of Saxe-Lauenburg
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Julius Henry of Saxe-Lauenburg
Julius Henry
Duke of Saxe-Lauenburg
Reign1656 – 1665
SuccessorFrancis Erdmann
Born(1586-04-09)9 April 1586
Died20 November 1665(1665-11-20) (aged 79)
SpouseAnna of East Frisia
Elisabeth Sophia of Brandenburg
Anna Magdalena of Lobkowicz
Francis Erdmann
Julius Francis
HouseHouse of Ascania
FatherFrancis II
MotherMaria of Brunswick-Lüneburg
ReligionLutheran, after 1615 Catholic

Julius Henry of Saxe-Lauenburg (9 April 1586 - 20 November 1665) was duke of Saxe-Lauenburg between 1656 and 1665. Before ascending to the throne he served as Field Marshal in the imperial army.[1]


Before regency

Born at Wolfenbüttel, he was a son of Duke Francis II and his second wife Maria (1566-1626), daughter of Duke Julius of Brunswick and Lunenburg (Wolfenbüttel). Julius Henry studied at the University of Tübingen and entered into the service of King Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden afterwards. In expectation of becoming appointed Prince-Bishop of Osnabrück he converted to Roman Catholicism as a young man.

In imperial service Julius Henry commanded a regiment in the Uskok War against the Republic of Venice in 1617, later a regiment in Hungary. Julius Henry fought in the Battle of the White Mountain. As chamberlain of Emperor Ferdinands II the latter sent him as envoy to King Christian IV of Denmark and Norway. In 1619 Julius Henry, a certain Count of Altheim, and Charles Gonzaga founded the Order of the Conception (Italian: Ordine della Concezione), papally confirmed in 1624.

In 1623 the emperor conveyanced the lordship in Schlackenwerth, which he had deprived from the Schlick family disgraced after participating in the insurgency defeated at the White Mountain, to Julius Henry. He prompted the construction of the White Palace (Weißes Schloss / Bílý zámek) next to the old palace of the Schlicks. Julius Henry made the White Palace his domicile.[2]

In 1629 Julius Henry was given supreme command over the imperial troops in Poland and in this function he negotiated a peace with John George I, Elector of Saxony in 1632, after the latter had refused to join a Lutheran wart coalition under Gustavus Adolphus. Julius Henry was considered a confidant and close friend of Albrecht von Wallenstein. Thus Julius Henry was suspected to be involved in Wallenstein's assaults against the emperor. After Ferdinand had successfully instigated Wallenstein's murder the latter's friends were arrested including Julius Henry and incarcerated in Vienna.

Julius Henry successfully denied the competence of the imperial juridical commission which inquired against him, insisting on his status of immediate prince of the empire only to be judged by a college of his like. After the Peace of Prague in 1635 Ferdinand II released Julius Henry from imprisonment. After the accession of Emperor Ferdinand III in 1637 Julius Henry was again envoyed in several diplomatic missions.

Ruling Saxe-Lauenburg

In 1656 Julius Henry succeeded his elder half-brother Augustus as Duke of Saxe-Lauenburg. When ascending he confirmed the existing privileges of the nobility and the estates of the realm. In 1658 he forbade his vassals to pledge or else alienate fiefs, thus fighting the integration of manor estates in Saxe-Lauenburg into the monetary economies of the neighbouring city-states of Hamburg and Lübeck. He entered with both city-states into frontier disputes on manor estates which were in the process of evading Saxe-Lauenburgian overlordship into the competence of the city-states.

In 1659 Duke Julius Henry decreed in his general disposition (guide-lines for his government) "to also esteem the woodlands as heart and dwell [of revenues] of the Monarchy of Lower Saxony."[3] The Duchy of Saxe-Lauenburg also used to be called simply Lower Saxony. From 1659 on Julius Henry employed Johannes Kunckel as head of the ducal pharmacy.[4]

In 1663 Julius Henry bought the castle in Hauenstein (Bohemia) from the von Schlick family, making it part of the ducal Schlackenwerth domain.[5] He further acquired the lordship of Ploschkowitz.

Julius Henry died of age in Prague in 1665 and was buried in Schlackenwerth.

Marriages and issue

Julius Henry married three times: He married in Grabow (1) Countess Anna of East Frisia on 7 March 1617. They had no children.

On 27 February 1628 he married in Theusing (2) Elisabeth Sophia of Brandenburg (Berlin, *13 July 1589 - 24 December 1629*, Frankfurt an der Oder), daughter of John George, Elector of Brandenburg and widow of Reich's Prince Janusz Radziwi. Julius Henry and Elisabeth Sophia had one son:

Julius Henry's last wedding took place in Vienna on 18 August 1632 with (3) Anna Magdalena of Lobkowicz (*20 July 1606 - 7 September 1668*), daughter of Baron William the Younger Popel von Lobkowitz (Popel z Lobkowicz). Anna Magdalena was the only wife to officiate as Duchess of Saxe-Lauenburg, after her husband had ascended the throne on 18 January 1656. They had six children, however, only two survived infancy:


  • Johann Samuel Ersch and Johann Gottfried Gruber, Allgemeine Encyclopädie der Wissenschaften und Künste: in alphabetischer Folge von genannten Schriftstellern, vol. 92, Leipzig: J. F. Gleditsch, 1851, pp. 364seqq.
  • Peter von Kobbe, "Julius Heinrich" in: Geschichte und Landesbeschreibung des Herzogthums Lauenburg: 3 vols., Altona: Johann Friedrich Hammerich, 1836-1837 (reprint in: Hanover-Döhren: von Hirschheydt, 1979-1984), vol. 3, pp. 56-69.



  1. ^ Carl Eduard Vehse, Geschichte der deutschen Höfe seit der Reformation: 6 dept.s in 48 vols., Hamburg: Hoffmann und Campe, 1851-1860, here dept. 2: 'Austria', vol. 10: 'Geschichte des östreichischen Hofs und Adels und der östreichischen Diplomatie', p. 83
  2. ^ Wenzel Sommer, Kurze Geschichte der Stadt Schlackenwerth in Verbindung mit dem Piaristen-Collegium, Schlackenwerth: author's edition, 1866, p. 6
  3. ^ The addition in edged brackets not in the original. In the German original: "... auch die Höltzung für des Fürstenthumbs Niedersachsen Kern und Brunquell zu achten." Generaldisposition of Julius Francis, 1659.
  4. ^ Hermann Kopp, Geschichte der Chemie: 4 pts. in 2 vols., reprint, Leipzig: Lorentz, 1931, vol. 1, p. 173.
  5. ^ Stru?ná historie a stavební vývoj hradu a zámku "Archived copy" (in Czech). Archived from the original on 5 January 2013. Retrieved 2008.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
Julius Henry, Duke of Saxe-Lauenburg
Born: 9 April 1586 in Wolfenbüttel Died: 20 November 1665 in Prague
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Duke of Saxe-Lauenburg
1656 – 1665
Succeeded by
Francis Erdmann

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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