Sophia Jagiellonica

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Duchess Sophia Jagiellonica

Sophia Jagiellonica (born July 13, 1522 in Krakow , † May 28, 1575 in Schöningen ; actually Zofia Jagiellonka ) was a Polish-Lithuanian princess from the Jagiellonian family . From 1556 she was Duchess of Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel by marriage .


Sophia was the daughter of the Polish King Sigismund I from his connection with the Italian princess Bona Sforza . On February 22, 1556, she married the Catholic Duke Heinrich II of Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel. After the death of her husband in 1568, she retired to her property in Schöningen. She soon got into conflict with her stepson, Duke Julius , about the ducal rule in Schöningen, which was settled on January 17, 1572 by an agreement. However, Julius did not keep to the agreement, so that Sophia was forced to intervene with Emperor Maximilian II . She converted to the Protestant denomination in 1570 . This made her the first and only Protestant in the Jagiellonian dynasty.

No children were born from his marriage to Duke Heinrich II. After Heinrich's death in 1568, she moved to her widow's residence in Schöningen Castle , about 30 km east of Wolfenbüttel , where she lived until the end of her life accompanied by her lady-in-waiting and confidante Agnieszka . She died on May 28, 1575 and was buried in the Marienkirche in Wolfenbüttel .


  • Amalia Urszula Borkowska: Sophie. In: Horst-Rüdiger Jarck , Dieter Lent et al. (Ed.): Braunschweigisches Biographisches Lexikon - 8th to 18th century . Appelhans Verlag, Braunschweig 2006, ISBN 3-937664-46-7 , p. 660-611 .
  • Almut Bues: Zofia Jagiellonka, Duchess of Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel (1522–1575). Files on marriage, death and inheritance , Braunschweig: Appelhans 2018 (sources and research on Braunschweigische Landesgeschichte; 53), ISBN 978-3-944939-37-7 .
  • Małgorzata Duczmal: Jagiellonowie. Leksykon biograficzny , Kraków - Poznań 1996, pp. 509-520.
  • Andrea Lilienthal: The princess and power: Guelph duchesses in the 16th century. Elisabeth, Sidonia, Sophia. Hanover 2007.
  • Jan Pirożyński: The Duchess Sophie von Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel from the house of the Jagiellonians (1522-1575) and her library. A contribution to the history of German-Polish cultural relations in the Renaissance period. Wiesbaden 1992.
  • Jan Pirożyński: The international circle of correspondents of Duchess Sophie from the house of the Jagiellonians (1522-1575). A contribution to the cultural mediation of a Polish princess. In: Dietmar Popp , Robert Suckale (Ed.): The Jagiellons. Art and culture of a European dynasty at the turn of the modern age. Nuremberg 2002.
  • Jan Pirożyński: The role of Duchess Sophie von Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel from the house of the Jagiellons in view of the Habsburg candidacy for the Polish throne during the first interregnum in Poland (1572-1574). In: Studia Austro Polonica (1996) 5, pp. 59-80.
  • Aleksander Przeździerecki: Jagiellonki polskie w XVI. howku. t. IV, Kraków 1880.

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