Wednesday, June 27, 2012

A fine for Princess Eleonore

June 27, 1898

Princess Eleonore of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Sayn has been sentenced to "thirty days imprisonment and a fine of 300 marks," as a punishment for being found guilty of libeling her former brother-in-law, Count Königsmarck.

The Marquise de Fontenoy reports that the the count's divorce "attracted so much attention in Germany" a year.

The Princess, who is a Sayn-Wittgenstein by birth and by marriage, is an "elderly woman of over 50," who has no children, and is "renowned for the sharpness of her tongue and for her mischief-making propensities."

Princess Eleonore claimed that her sister's husband, Count Karl, had been "unduly intimate with Countess S___," said to be Empress Augusta's favorite  maid-of-honor.

But there was not "a shadow of truth" in the princess's accusations.  Her sister is a said to be an "extremely jealous woman," and made her husband's life "such a burden," that he had not other alternative but to leave her and divorce her.    He was granted a divorce on the grounds of "mutual antipathy," after more than thirty years of marrige.

Princess Eleonore and her sister are half-English as their mother, now nearly 90, is the daughter of an English baronet, Sir George Pigott.  Apparently, there were all "sorts of obstacles" to Miss Pigott's marriage as her fiance's family claimed the marriage would be unequal.  But everything was "satisfactorily adjusted" when Miss Pigott "comprised a number of former Kings of Ireland among her ancestors."

The princess was born Countess Eleonore of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Sayn on March 31, 1840.  She is the second wife of Prince Otto of Say-Wittgenstein-Berleburg.  His first wife was her youngest sister, Elisabeth, who died in 1883.

Salisbury Anne Pigott married Count Gustav of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Sayn in  1838.  They had four daughters; Eleonore, Leontine, who married Count Karl von Königsmarck, Alice, and Elisabeth.

1 comment:

Rex said...

Marlene, I'm sure many of us could claim to be descended from a number of former Kings of Ireland!