Marie Elisabeth, Abbess of Quedlinburg

Duchess Marie Elisabeth of Schleswig-Holstein-Gottorp (21 March 1678 – 17 July 1755) was Princess-Abbess of Quedlinburg from 1718 until her death.

Princess-Abbess Marie Elisabeth

Duchess Marie Elisabeth was born in Hamburg as the youngest child of Christian Albert, Duke of Holstein-Gottorp, and his wife, Princess Frederica Amalia of Denmark. She was considered for marriage to Charles XII of Sweden, but he declined.

In 1718, she was elected Princess-Abbess of Quedlinburg. However, the Kings in Prussia, who obtained the guardianship of the abbey-principality as electors of Brandenburg in 1698, tried to impose their authority over this small state of the Holy Roman Empire by attempting to influence the election of new princess-abbess in favour of their own relatives. Marie Elisabeth was elected several times during the interregnum, while the abbey-principality was ruled by the provost Maria Aurora von Königsmarck, but King Frederick William I of Prussia refused to consent to each election and Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI consequently refused to confirm the elections. The election, however, eventually went ahead but the selection of a duchess of Schleswig-Holstein-Gottorp instead than a princess of Prussia caused quite a stir. Due to her territorial disputes with the King in Prussia, Marie Elisabeth turned to the Holy Roman Emperor, but without success.

As the ruler, Princess-Abbess Marie Elisabeth restored the castle, the abbey and the Abbey Church of St. Servatius, where she was buried upon her death in Quedlinburg. After her death, a princess of Prussia was finally elected and Marie Elisabeth was succeeded by Princess Anna Amalia of Prussia.


Marie Elisabeth's ancestors in three generations
Marie Elisabeth, Abbess of Quedlinburg Father:
Christian Albert, Duke of Holstein-Gottorp
Paternal grandfather:
Frederick III, Duke of Holstein-Gottorp
Paternal great-grandfather:
John Adolf, Duke of Holstein-Gottorp
Paternal great-grandmother:
Augusta of Denmark
Paternal grandmother:
Marie Elisabeth of Saxony
Paternal great-grandfather:
John George I, Elector of Saxony
Paternal great-grandmother:
Magdalene Sibylle of Prussia
Frederica Amalia of Denmark
Maternal grandfather:
Frederick III of Denmark
Maternal great-grandfather:
Christian IV of Denmark
Maternal great-grandmother:
Anne Catherine of Brandenburg
Maternal grandmother:
Sophie Amalie of Brunswick-Lüneburg
Maternal Great-grandfather:
George, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg
Maternal great-grandmother:
Anne Eleonore of Hesse-Darmstadt


  • H. Lorenz: Werdegang von Stift und Stadt Quedlinburg. Quedlinburg 1922.

External linksEdit

Marie Elisabeth
Cadet branch of the House of Oldenburg
Regnal titles
Office of provost held by
Maria Aurora von Königsmarck
Title last held by
Anna Dorothea
Princess-Abbess of Quedlinburg
Succeeded by