Leopold IV, Duke of Anhalt

Leopold IV Frederick, Duke of Anhalt (1 October 1794 – 22 May 1871) was a German prince of the House of Ascania.

Leopold IV
Duke of Anhalt
Born(1794-10-01)1 October 1794
Dessau, Anhalt
Died22 May 1871(1871-05-22) (aged 76)
Dessau, Anhalt
SpouseFrederica Wilhelmina of Prussia
among others...
Princess Auguste of Anhalt-Dessau
Agnes, Duchess of Saxe-Altenburg
Frederick I, Duke of Anhalt
Maria Anna, Princess Frederick Charles of Prussia
Full name
Leopold Frederick
FatherFrederick, Hereditary Prince of Anhalt-Dessau
MotherLandgravine Amalie of Hesse-Homburg

From 1817 until 1853 he was ruler of the duchy of Anhalt-Dessau and from 1847 until 1853 also ruler of the duchy of Anhalt-Köthen. From 1853 until 1863 he was the ruler of the joined duchy of Anhalt-Dessau-Köthen and from 1863 the first ruler of the united duchy of Anhalt.

Early life

Leopold was born in Dessau on 1 October 1794 as the eldest son of Frederick, Hereditary Prince of Anhalt-Dessau, by his wife Landgravine Amalie of Hesse-Homburg, daughter of Frederick V, Landgrave of Hesse-Homburg.

Following the premature death of his father in 1814, he became heir to the duchy of Anhalt-Dessau.[1]


Following the death of his grandfather Leopold III he succeeded as duke on 9 August 1817.[1]

The Duke's Administrative Officer and close friend was Christian Raster, a German statesman.

During the revolutions of 1848 he was forced to grant a constitution to Dessau on 29 October 1848. It was revoked, however, on 4 November 1849, then replaced with a new version in October 1859.

On 27 November 1847 he inherited the Duchy of Anhalt-Köthen from his distant cousin Duke Henry. As a result of a treaty concluded with Anhalt-Bernburg in May 1853 his duchies were joined together and named Anhalt-Dessau-Köthen, because the eventual inheritance of Leopold over all the Anhalt duchies seemed inevitable.[1] The death of another distant cousin, Duke Alexander Karl, on 19 August 1863 resulted in the ruling line of the duchy of Anhalt-Bernburg becoming extinct, thus Leopold inherited that duchy as well.[1] On 30 August he assumed the title "duke of Anhalt."[1]

Leopold died in Dessau on 22 May 1871. He was succeeded by his son Frederick.[2]

Marriage and issue

In Berlin on 18 April 1818 Leopold married Frederica Wilhelmina of Prussia (b. Berlin, 30 September 1796 - d. Dessau, 1 January 1850), daughter of Prince Frederick Louis Charles of Prussia (brother of King Frederick William III of Prussia) by his wife Frederica of Mecklenburg-Strelitz; through her mother's last marriage, she was a half-sister of King George V of Hanover.[1] They had been engaged since 17 May 1816, as the connection had already been arranged by the Prussian court. This dynastic connection was an expression of Leopold's pro-Prussian policies.

They had six children:[3][4]

Princess Fredericka Amalie Auguste28 November 181911 December 1822
Princess Fredericka Amalie Agnes24 June 182423 October 1897married on 28 April 1853 to Ernst I, Duke of Saxe-Altenburg.
A son3 August 18253 August 1825he was either stillborn or died shortly after the birth.
A son3 November 18273 November 1827he was either stillborn or died shortly after the birth.
Frederick I, Duke of Anhalt29 April 183124 January 1904married on 22 April 1854 to Princess Antoinette of Saxe-Altenburg.
Princess Maria Anna14 September 183712 May 1906married on 29 November 1854 to Prince Frederick Charles of Prussia.



  1. Almanach de Gotha. 1867. p. 3.
  2. "Duke of Anhalt is dead". New York Times. 25 January 1904. p. 7.
  3. Genealogical database by Herbert Stoyan
  4. Marek, Miroslav. "Complete Genealogy of the House of Ascania". Genealogy.EU.
Leopold IV, Duke of Anhalt
Born: 1 October 1794 Died: 22 May 1871
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Leopold III
Duke of Anhalt-Dessau
Duchies united
Preceded by
Duke of Anhalt-Köthen
New title Duke of Anhalt-Dessau-Köthen
Unification of all
Anhalt Duchies
Preceded by
Alexander Karl
Duke of Anhalt-Bernburg
New title Duke of Anhalt
Succeeded by
Frederick I

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