Anne, Princess Royal and Princess of Orange
Portrait by Bernard Accama, 1736
|Princess consort of Orange|
|Spouse||William IV, Prince of Orange|
|Issue||Carolina, Princess of Nassau-Weilburg
William V, Prince of Orange
|House||House of Hanover|
|Father||George II of Great Britain|
|Mother||Caroline of Ansbach|
2 November 1709 (|
Herrenhausen Palace, Hanover
|Died||12 January 1759
|Burial||Nieuwe Kerk (Delft)|
Anne, Princess Royal and Princess of Orange (2 November 1709 – 12 January 1759) was the second child and eldest daughter of King George II of Great Britain and his consort, Caroline of Ansbach. She was the spouse of William IV, Prince of Orange, the first hereditary stadtholder of the Netherlands. Princess Anne was the second daughter of a British sovereign to hold the title Princess Royal. She was Regent of the Netherlands from 1751 until her death in 1759, exercising extensive powers on behalf of her son William V. Because of her English upbringing and family connections, she was known as an Anglophile - despite being unable to convince the Dutch Republic to enter the Seven Years' War on the side of the British.
Anne was born at Herrenhausen Palace, Hanover, five years before her paternal grandfather, Elector George Louis, succeeded to the British throne as George I. She was christened shortly after birth at Herrenhausen Palace. She was named after her paternal grandfather's second cousin Anne, Queen of Great Britain.
She learned German, French and English, and was taught music (including singing, harpsichord, and composition) by Georg Friedrich Händel. Händel did not like teaching, but said he would "make the only exception for Anne, flower of princesses". She remained a lifelong supporter, attending his operas and subscribing to his music.
She contracted and survived smallpox in 1720, and two years later her mother helped to popularise the practice of variolation (an early type of immunisation against smallpox), which had been witnessed by Lady Mary Wortley Montagu and Charles Maitland in Constantinople. At the direction of Caroline, six prisoners condemned to death were offered the chance to undergo variolation instead of execution: they all survived, as did six orphan children given the same treatment as a further test. Convinced of its medical value, the Queen had her two younger daughters, Amelia and Caroline, inoculated successfully. Anne's face was scarred by the disease, and she was not considered as pretty as her two younger sisters.
On 30 August 1727, George II created his eldest daughter Princess Royal. Charles I first bestowed this title on his eldest daughter, Mary, Princess of Orange (mother of William III), in 1642. However, the title fell from use until the reign of George II. (Princess Anne became Princess Royal during the lifetime of her aunt, Queen Sophia Dorothea of Prussia. Although the eldest daughter of a British monarch, George I, Sophia Dorothea had already married the King of Prussia eight years before her father's succession.)
The princess took drawing and painting lessons from Herman van der Mijn and made a self-portrait of herself in 1740 that is in the collection of the House of Orange-Nassau Historic Collections Trust. She also made a portrait of Van der Mijn himself while he was at work making portraits of other family members.
A potential marriage contract between Anne and King Louis XV of France was eventually discarded when the French insisted that Anne convert to Roman Catholicism. On 25 March 1734 (New Style) in the Chapel Royal at St. James's Palace, she married William IV, Prince of Orange. William had a spinal deformity, which affected his appearance, but Anne said she would marry him even "if he were a baboon". She ceased to use her British style in favour of the title she gained by marriage. The music played on her wedding, This is the day was set by Handel to the princess's own words based on Psalms 45 and 118. Handel also composed an operatic entertainment, Parnasso in Festa, in honour of her wedding which was performed for the first time at the King's Theatre, London, on 13 March 1734, with great success.  She quarreled with her brother, the Prince of Wales, about her choice[clarification needed].
William and Anne sailed to Holland after a honeymoon at Kew. Anne soon felt homesick when her husband went on campaign in the Rhineland, and she travelled back to England believing herself to be pregnant. Eventually, her husband and father commanded her to return to Holland. By April 1735, it was clear she was not with child after all. In 1736, she did become pregnant, but the child (a daughter) was stillborn.
When her husband died at the age of 40 in 1751, Anne was appointed regent for her 3 year-old son, Prince William V. She was hard-working, but arrogant and imperious, which made her unpopular. This would help William later in his tough life. The 1750s were years of increasing tension and commercial rivalry between Holland and Britain, which placed her in a difficult position.
She continued to act as regent until her death from dropsy in 1759, at The Hague, Netherlands, when she was replaced by her mother-in-law, Marie Louise of Hesse-Kassel, and by Duke Louis Ernest of Brunswick-Lüneburg. When she too died, Anne's daughter, Carolina, was made regent until William V turned 18 in 1766.
Princess Anne, Maryland is named for her.
On 31 January 1719, as a grandchild of the sovereign, Anne was granted use of the arms of the realm, differenced by a label argent of five points, each bearing a cross gules. On 30 August 1727, as a child of the sovereign, Anne's difference changed to a label argent of three points, each bearing a cross gules.
The Prince and Princess of Orange-Nassau had a stillborn son, in 1735. Their other children were:
|Stillborn Daughter||19 December 1736||19 December 1736|
|Stillborn Daughter||22 December 1739||22 December 1739|
|Carolina, Princess-Regent of Friesland||28 February 1743||6 May 1787||married 1760, Karl Christian of Nassau-Weilburg; had issue|
|Anna of Orange-Nassau||15 November 1746||29 December 1746|
|Willem V Batavus||8 March 1748||9 April 1806||married, 1767, Princess Wilhelmina of Prussia; had issue|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Anne, Princess Royal and Princess of Orange.|
- Yvonne's Royalty Home Page: Royal Christenings
- Van der Kiste, p. 24
- Van der Kiste, p. 84
- Van der Kiste, p. 85
- Vickers, David. "Programme Notes for "Parnasso in Festa"". Retrieved 17 May 2014.
- Van der Kiste, p. 73
- Van der Kiste, p. 83
- Van der Kiste, p. 78
- Clayton, Ellen Creathorne. English female artists, volume 2 (London, Tinsley brothers, 1876) p. 81 ff.
- Van der Kiste, p. 132
- Van der Kiste, p. 131
- Van der Kiste, p. 133
- Lang, Paul Henry (2011). George Frideric Handel (reprint ed.). Dover Books on Music. pp. 249–50. ISBN 978-0-486-29227-4.
- Van der Kiste, pp. 135–136
- Van der Kiste, p. 136
- Van der Kiste, p. 150
- Van der Kiste, p. 198
- Van der Kiste, p. 209
- Marks of Cadency in the British Royal Family
- Van der Kiste, John (1997) George II and Queen Caroline. Stroud, Gloucestershire: Sutton Publishing. ISBN 0-7509-1321-5
Anne, Princess Royal and Princess of Orange
Cadet branch of the House of WelfBorn: 2 November 1709 Died: 12 January 1759
Title last held byMarie Louise of Hesse-Kassel
|Princess consort of Orange
Title next held byWilhelmina of Prussia
Title last held byPrincess Mary
Title next held byPrincess Charlotte