Christian Friedrich, Baron Stockmar

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Baron Stockmar
Christian Friedrich, Baron Stockmar

Christian Friedrich Freiherr von Stockmar (22 August 1787 – 9 July 1863) was an Anglo-Belgian statesman, who was a leading player in the affairs of the United Kingdom under Queen Victoria.

Early life and education[edit]

He was born in Coburg, Germany of German parentage and Swedish descent.[1] He was educated as a physician, and became the personal physician of Prince Leopold of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha in 1816 at the time of Leopold's marriage to Princess Charlotte of the United Kingdom, the only child of King George IV.[2][3]

In service of King Leopold[edit]

Charlotte died giving birth to a stillborn son about a year later (had she lived, Leopold would have been Prince Consort of the United Kingdom), and Stockmar stayed in Leopold's service as his private secretary, comptroller of the household, and political advisor.

It is said, without real proof, that one of the services he provided was procuring a mistress for Leopold. He by all means was not at all pleased when in 1828 one of his cousins, Caroline “Lina” Philippine Auguste Bauer, an actress, who bore a striking resemblance with Princess Charlotte, became the mistress of his master. She was brought over to England, together with her mother, but the affair did not last long and she returned to Germany and to the theater. After her death (and that of both King Leopold and Baron von Stockmar), her memoirs were published in which she claimed that she had contracted a morganatic marriage with Leopold and that she had received the title Countess of Montgomery. There has never been any evidence of such marriage, which furthermore was strongly denied by the son of the late Dr. von Stockmar.

After Leopold had briefly come under scrutiny for the position of King of the Greeks, he was made King of the Belgians in 1831. From then on, Stockmar took up residence in Coburg, continuing to advise Leopold. In 1837, he was sent by Leopold to serve as advisor to Queen Victoria: one of his first tasks was to brief her on whether Leopold's nephew, Prince Albert (later Prince Consort), was a suitable mate. After the marriage of Victoria and Albert, Stockmar became their unofficial counsellor, including in the in the education of Victoria's son and heir, the future King Edward VII, and intervened in several crises.

Ambassador to the German parliament[edit]

In 1848 he was made ambassador of the Duchy of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha to the parliament of the German Confederation.

His prominence in the United Kingdom's political circles led to resentment at what was seen to be Albert's (and, generally, German) intervention in the UK's affairs.

Stockmar was raised to the rank of baron by the King of Saxony. He died at Coburg.[4]

Marriage[edit]

In August 1832 he married Fanny Sommer; they had two children, Ernst Alfred Christian von Stockmar (1833–1886), and Carl August von Stockmar (1836–1909).

References[edit]