Sophie Nicoline of Waldeck and Pyrmont was born on 27 July 1854 as the daughter of George Victor, Prince of Waldeck and Pyrmont and Helena of Nassau. As such, she was the sister of Emma of Waldeck and Pyrmont, Queen of the Netherlands and mother of Queen Wilhelmina.
It was 11-year-old Emma who wrote to her English governess to report on her sister’s death. Sophie was just 15 years old when she died in Torquay of tuberculosis.
On 9 August 1869, Emma wrote,
Mamma asked me to write to you to inform you that our dear Sophie is now an Angel in Heaven. On Thursday morning, at about 3 o’clock, when mamma was by her side, she went to bed. She had suffered much these last few days, but she refused to give in until the end. We spent the last eight weeks in Ems, and then we came here, hoping that the sea air would do her good, but she only went into the garden three times. She was very happy on her birthday and she was brought into the garden in her little cart. On my birthday she was up for the last time and she lay on the sofa to watch us play croquet. That night she suddenly became much worse.
Mamma is very sad and unwell, but she will write to you as soon as she is able. She and sisters send you much love and Pappa commends himself to you.
Yours affectionately, Emma.
As Queen of the Netherlands, Emma would always support the fight against tuberculosis.