Sophia of the Palatinate

Sophia, dressed as an Indian. Painted by her sister Louise (circa 1644)

Born in 1630 to Frederick V (26 August 1596 – 29 November 1632), Elector Palatine, and Elizabeth Stuart (19 August 1596 – 13 February 1662), Sophia grew up in the Dutch Republic, where her family had sought refuge after the sequestration of their Electorate during the Thirty Years’ War (1618 to 1648).

In 1624 New Netherland became a province of the Dutch Republic. Because the first interest of the Dutch was the fur trade, they cultivated close relations with the Five Nations of the Iroquois, the access key to the central regions they from which the skins came.

Sophia married Ernest Augustus of Brunswick-Lüneburg in 1658. Ernest Augustus succeeded in having the House of Hanover raised to electoral dignity in 1692. A patron of the arts, Sophia commissioned the palace and gardens of Herrenhausen and sponsored philosophers, such as Gottfried Leibniz.

Therefore for a further Provision of the Succession of the Crown in the Protestant Line We Your Majesties most dutifull and Loyall Subjects the Lords Spirituall and Temporall and Commons in this present Parliament assembled do beseech Your Majesty that it may be enacted and declared and be it enacted and declared by the Kings most Excellent Majesty by and with the Advice and Consent of the Lords Spirituall and Temporall and Commons in this present Parliament assembled and by the Authority of the same That the most Excellent Princess Sophia Electress and Dutchess Dowager of Hannover Daughter of the most Excellent Princess Elizabeth late Queen of Bohemia Daughter of our late Sovereign Lord King James the First of happy Memory be and is hereby declared to be the next in Succession in the Protestant Line to the Imperial Crown and Dignity of the forsaid Realms of England France and Ireland with the Dominions and Territories thereunto belonging.

Act of Settlement 1701, Parliament of England

Sophia died in June 1714. Her son (1660–1727) succeeded as George I in August after Queen Anne died.

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