Anna Maria of Anhalt

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Anna Maria von Anhalt (born June 13, 1561 in Zerbst ; † November 14, 1605 in Brieg ) was an Ascanian princess from the Anhalt-Bernburg - Zerbst line . Anna Maria was abbess of Gernrode from 1570 to 1577 and by marriage from May 19, 1577 to March 25, 1602, Duchess of Brieg , Liegnitz , Wohlau and Ohlau .


Anna Maria was the eldest daughter of Duke Joachim Ernst von Anhalt (1536–1586) from his first marriage to Agnes (1540–1569), daughter of Count Wolfgang von Barby .

At the age of only nine, she followed her paternal aunt Elisabeth III in 1570 . von Anhalt as abbess of the Gernrode and Frose monastery . However, she received this dignity only nominally, in practice the associated area was under the protection of the Principality of Anhalt and Anna Maria's father, as administrator, also exercised Gernrode's voting rights in the Reichstag . In 1577 Anna Maria was relieved of her duties as abbess. With Sibylla , Agnes Hedwig and Dorothea Maria , three of her younger sisters succeeded her in this office.

On May 19, 1577 Anna Maria married Duke Joachim Friedrich in Brieg , the older son of Duke Georg II "the Pious" . In addition to Anna Maria's father, all of the groom's brothers-in-law and Prince Elector Joachim Friedrich von Brandenburg were present at the wedding .

Duke Georg II died in 1586 and his two sons Joachim Friedrich and Johann Georg succeeded him. Georg's widow Barbara von Brandenburg received the city ​​of Brieg as Wittum . The Duchy of Brieg, reduced in size, was inherited by the older son Joachim Friedrich, while Wohlau fell to his brother Johann Georg. Since her mother Barbara von Brandenburg resided at the Brieger Castle, the sons lived in Ohlau , which initially belonged to them together.

After the death of his brother Johann Georg , who died in 1592 without descendants, Anna Maria's husband Joachim Friedrich inherited the Duchy of Wohlau, while Johann Georg's widow Anna von Württemberg was assigned as Wittum Ohlau. When she remarried to Duke Friedrich IV of Liegnitz in 1594 , she lost her claim to the Ohlauer Wittum. As a result, Ohlau came to Joachim Friedrich, to whom the city of Brieg also fell after the death of his mother Barbara von Brandenburg in 1595. This enabled him to reunite the areas left by his father in one hand.

Anna Maria's husband Joachim Friedrich died in 1602. In his will drawn up on December 15, 1595, he designated Ohlau as the Wittum for Anna Maria. She took over the guardianship of her underage children and at the same time the regency for the underage sons Johann Christian and Georg Rudolf . After her death in 1605, the guardianship and regency of Joachim Friedrich's sister Elisabeth Magdalena von Brieg (1562-1630) and her husband Karl II , Duke of Münsterberg - Oels took over.

Anna Maria's motto was HRMDDHG ( Lord, rule me through your Holy Spirit )


From their marriage, Anna Maria had the following children:

  • Georg Ernst (* / † 6. 1589)
  • Johann Christian (1591–1639), Duke of Liegnitz and Brieg
⚭ 1610 Princess Dorothea Sibylle of Brandenburg (1590–1625)
⚭ 1620 Baroness Anna von Sitzsch (1611–1639)
  • Barbara Agnes (1593-1631)
⚭ 1620 Hans Ulrich von Schaffgotsch , Baron von Kynast and Greiffenstein (1595–1635)
⚭ 1614 Princess Sophie Elisabeth of Anhalt-Dessau (1589–1622)
⚭ 1624 Princess Elisabeth Magdalena von Münsterberg-Oels (1599–1631)
  • Anna Maria (1596-1602)
  • Maria Sophia (1601-1654)


Individual evidence

  1. Women in power 1570-1600
  2. Johann Samuelansch and Johann Gottfried Gruber (eds.): General Encyclopedia of Sciences and Arts . 2nd section, 20th part, Leipzig, 1842, p. 84 ( digitized version )
  3. Max Löbe: motto, motto and sayings of German princely families of the XVI. and XVII. Century. Barth, Leipzig 1883, p. 233  in the German Digital Library