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Frederick Francis III, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin

Frederick Francis III, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin

German Grand Duke
The basics
Quick Facts
Gender male
Birth March 19, 1851 (Ludwigslust, Ludwigslust-Parchim District, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Germany)
Death April 10, 1897 (Cannes, arrondissement of Grasse, Alpes-Maritimes, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur)
Mother: Princess Augusta Reuss of Köstritz
Father: Frederick Francis IIGrand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
Siblings: Duke Paul Frederick of MecklenburgDuke Henry of Mecklenburg-SchwerinDuke Adolf Friedrich of MecklenburgDuke John Albert of Mecklenburg
Spouse: Grand Duchess Anastasia Mikhailovna of Russia
Children: Alexandrine of Mecklenburg-SchwerinFrederick Francis IVGrand Duke of Mecklenburg-SchwerinDuchess Cecilie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
The details

Frederick Francis II (28 February 1823 – 15 April 1883) was a Prussian officer and Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin from 7 March 1842 until 15 April 1883.


He was born in Schloss Ludwigslust, the eldest son of Hereditary Grand Duke Paul Friedrich of Mecklenburg and his wife Princess Alexandrine of Prussia. He became heir apparent to the grand duchy following the death of his great-grandfather Frederick Francis I on 1 February 1837. Frederick Francis was privately educated until 1838. He then attended the Blochmann institute in Dresden before going to the University of Bonn. Frederick Francis succeeded his father as Grand Duke on 7 March 1842.

Frederick Francis served on the general staff of Generalfeldmarschall Friedrich Graf von Wrangel during the Second Schleswig War. During the Austro-Prussian War he commanded the forces that occupied Leipzig and lay siege to Nuremberg. He also took part in the Franco-Prussian War, during which he was made Governor-General of Reims and commanded the German forces laying siege to Toul. He defended the Prussian forces during the Siege of Paris from attack by the Army of the Loire. He defeated French forces at the battles of Beaune-La-Rolande and Beaugency. He was a maternal first cousin of both German Emperor Frederick III and Russian Tsar Alexander II. He held the rank of Prussian general and was also a Russian General Field Marshal.

Frederick Francis died on 15 April 1883 in Schwerin. He was succeeded as Grand Duke by his eldest son Frederick Francis III.

Marriages and children

Frederick Francis was first married to Princess Augusta of Reuss-Köstritz (1822–1862) on 3 November 1849 in Ludwigslust. They had six children:

  • Frederick Francis III, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1851–1897); father of Alexandrine, Queen of Denmark and Cecile, last Crown Princess of Prussia.
  • Paul Frederick, Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1852–1923); married Princess Marie of Windisch-Graetz.
  • Duchess Marie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (Maria Pavlovna of Russia) (1854–1920); married Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich of Russia. Their son Cyril became pretender to the Russian throne after the assassination of his cousin Nicholas II of Russia.
  • Duke Nikolaus of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1855–1856)
  • Duke Johann Albrecht of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1857–1920) Imperial regent of the Duchy of Brunswick
  • Duke Alexander of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1859-1859)

Frederick Francis married for a second time in Darmstadt on 4 July 1864 to Princess Anne of Hesse and by Rhine. They had one daughter:

  • Duchess Anne of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1865–1882)

His third wife was Princess Marie of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt, with whom he had four children:

  • Duchess Elisabeth Alexandrine of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1869–1955); married Frederick Augustus II, Grand Duke of Oldenburg (1852–1931).
  • Duke Friedrich William of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1871–1897)
  • Duke Adolf Friedrich of Mecklenburg (1873–1969)
  • Duke Heinrich of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1876–1934); married Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands, father of Juliana of the Netherlands.


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