John Philip, Duke of Saxe-Altenburg
||This article may be expanded with text translated from the corresponding article in the German Wikipedia. (September 2012)|
|This article does not cite any references or sources. (March 2007)|
|Successor||Frederick William II|
|Spouse||Elisabeth of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel|
|Elisabeth Sophie, Duchess of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg|
|House||House of Wettin|
|Father||Frederick William I, Duke of Saxe-Weimar|
|Mother||Anna Maria of the Palatinate-Neuburg|
25 January 1597|
|Died||1 April 1639
When his father died (1602), John Philip and his younger brothers Frederick, John William and Frederick William were underage. Because of this, his uncle John (more interested in natural sciences and art than politics) took over his guardianship and the regency of his inheritance; but shortly after he took all the duchy of Saxe-Weimar into his own hands.
The next year (1603), the young prince of Saxe-Weimar demanded his own inheritance, but his uncle John opposed this. But finally, both parts made a divisionary treaty of the family lands: John Philip and his brothers took Altenburg and some towns, and John retained Weimar and Jena.
In 1618, John Philip, as elder son, was declared adult and assumed the government of the duchy of Saxe-Altenburg. Also, he took over the guardianship of his younger siblings. The four brothers co-ruled the duchy, but two of them died soon after and childless: Frederick, who was killed in action in 1625, and John William, died in Brieg on 1632.
John Philip and his only surviving brother, Frederick William II, continued as co-rulers; but, in fact, it was John Philip who really assumed the supreme and full control of the government until his death.
In 1638, he received the towns of Coburg, Bad Rodach, Römhild, Hildburghausen and Neustadt, according to the divisionary treaty between him and the branch of Saxe-Weimar after the death of the duke John Ernest of Saxe-Eisenach without surviving issue.
Before his death, he made a will, when he declared his daughter the general heiress of the branch of Saxe-Altenburg, only in case of extinction of the male issue of the family. This will later originated a dispute between the branches of Saxe-Gotha and Saxe-Weimar.
John Philip was succeeded by his younger and only surviving brother, Frederick William II.
Marriage and issue
In Altenburg on 25 October 1618 John Philip married Elisabeth of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel (dowager sister-in-law of his former regents, the Electors of Saxony Christian II and Johann Georg I). They had only one daughter:
- Elisabeth Sophie (b. Halle, 10 October 1619 - d. Gotha, 20 December 1680), married on 24 October 1636 to Ernest I, Duke of Saxe-Gotha.
|Duke of Saxe-Altenburg
Frederick William II
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