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The Darker Side of Marriage Policies
On Tuesday 4th November Jill Bepler gave a public lecture at the Wolfenbüttel town hall entitled “I am indeed the poor victim of my house.” The darker side of the marriage policies of the Wolfenbüttel Sun King. She explored the broader political and dynastic background to the first-ever marriage of a European princess to a member of the Romanov family. In 1711, at the instigation of her grandfather, Duke Anton Ulrich of Wolfenbüttel Charlotte Christiane Sophie of Braunschweig-Lüneburg was married to Alexei, son of Peter the Great. She died in childbirth in St Petersburg in 1715 at the age of 21. Her surviving letters home record both her miserable marriage and her homesickness. The lecture was part of series to mark the 400th anniversary of the death of Anton Ulrich, a famous author of Baroque courtly novels and a renowned art collector whose paintings form the basis of the collections of the Herzog Anton Ulrich Museum in Braunschweig.