Frederick Ulrich, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg

Frederick Ulrich (German Friedrich Ulrich, 5 April 1591 – 11 August 1634), Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg, was prince of Wolfenbüttel from 1613 until his death.

Frederick Ulrich
Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg, Prince of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel
Arolsen Klebeband 01 225 2.jpg
Born(1591-04-05)5 April 1591
Died11 August 1634(1634-08-11) (aged 43)
Noble familyHouse of Guelph
Spouse(s)Anna Sophia of Brandenburg
FatherHenry Julius, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg
MotherElizabeth of Denmark


Frederick Ulrich was the son of Duke Henry Julius of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel (1564-1613) and his second wife Princess Elisabeth of Denmark (1573-1625), the eldest daughter of King Frederick II of Denmark. Frederick studied at the universities of Helmstedt and Tübingen.

England in 1610Edit

In March 1610 he visited his aunt Anne of Denmark in England, staying at St James Palace with Prince Henry, who took him to see the ship the Prince Royal being built at Woolwich.[1] He took a tour of the South West, visiting Oxford, Gloucester, Bath, and Bristol where news of the assassination of Henry IV of France reached him and ended his tour. The poet Sir David Murray, a gentleman of the household of Prince Henry, managed part of the tour, using £1,000 for expenses. He attended the masques London's Love to Prince Henry and Tethys' Festival.[2] In April he performed in a tournament "running at the ring."[3] The Prince of Wales gave him his portrait painted by Isaac Oliver. James VI and I gave him a jewel and a ring which the duke gave to Princess Elizabeth, bought for £1,900 from Peter Vanlore. After Prince Henry's death in 1612 the duke was sent a suit of gilt armour.[4]

Duke of Brunswick-LüneburgEdit

He became ruling duke after the death of his father in 1613. In 1615, Frederick became involved in a war with the City of Brunswick, which was reluctant to recognize his overlordship.

Between 1616 and 1622, he was de facto deposed by his mother, Elizabeth, with the help of her brother, King Christian IV of Denmark, because of his alcoholism; government business was led by Anton von Streithorst, who nearly ruined the state by minting coins from cheap metals and thus causing inflation. Because of the bad situation of the state, Christian had Frederick take control of the government again. With the help of the states' nobility, he managed to regain control; the members of the Streithorst government fled the state.

Because of Frederick's indecision and weakness, Brunswick was heavily ransacked during the Thirty Years' War — both by the Catholic forces of Tilly and Pappenheim and by the Protestant forces of Christian of Denmark and Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden. The duke lost most of his territory during this time. He died after an accident in 1634.

Marriage & FamilyEdit

Frederick Ulrich married Anna Sophia (1598-1659), daughter of John Sigismund, Elector of Brandenburg, in 1614. They had no children and Frederick tried to get a divorce from Anna, though he died before the divorce was completed. Anna Sophia spent her widowhood in Schöningen, where she founded a renowned school, the Anna-Sophianeum.


Frederick Ulrich's ancestors in three generations
Frederick Ulrich, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg Father:
Henry Julius
Paternal Grandfather:
Paternal Great-grandfather:
Henry V
Paternal Great-grandmother:
Mary of Württemberg
Paternal Grandmother:
Hedwig of Brandenburg
Paternal Great-grandfather:
Joachim II Hector
Paternal Great-grandmother:
Magdalena of Saxony
Elizabeth of Denmark
Maternal Grandfather:
Frederick II of Denmark
Maternal Great-grandfather:
Christian III of Denmark
Maternal Great-grandmother:
Dorothea of Saxe-Lauenburg
Maternal Grandmother:
Sofie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
Maternal Great-grandfather:
Ulrich III of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
Maternal Great-grandmother:
Elizabeth of Denmark


  1. ^ Henry Ellis, Original Letters Illustrative of English History, 3rd Series, vol. 4 (London, 1846), p. 167.
  2. ^ Norman McClure, Letters of John Chamberlain, vol. 1 (Philadelphia, 1939), p. 300: John Nichols, The Progresses, Processions, and Magnificent Festivities, of King James the First, vol. 2 (London, 1828), pp. 290, 310-2, 314: CSP Domestic: 1603-1610, p. 611.
  3. ^ E. K. Purnell & A. B. Hinds, HMC Downshire, vol. 2 (London, 1936), p. 276.
  4. ^ William Brenchley Rye, England as Seen by Foreigners in the Days of Elizabeth & James the First (London, 1865), pp. 59, 224-5.
Frederick Ulrich, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg
Cadet branch of the House of Este
Born: 5 April 1591 Died: 11 August 1634
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Henry Julius
Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg
Prince of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel

Succeeded by
Augustus the Younger
Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg
Prince of Calenberg

Succeeded by
Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg
Prince of Grubenhagen
only de facto, not de jure

Succeeded by
Christian the Elder