Stephanie of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen – Too good for this world

stephanie hohenzollern
(public domain)

Stephanie of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen was born on 15 July 1837 as the daughter of Karl Anton, Prince of Hohenzollern and Princess Josephine of Baden.

Stephanie married King Peter V of Portugal on 29 April 1858 in a proxy ceremony at st. Hedwig’s Cathedral in Berlin. They finally married in person on 18 May 1858 at the Church of St. Dominic in Lisbon. They spent their honeymoon in Sintra, supposedly strolling arm in arm through the mountains. In her short time as Queen, she was known for her charity and she founded several hospitals and charities. Prince Albert, Queen Victoria’s husband wrote of her, “She is good, simple and unassuming, and has an expression in her eyes… a kind of selflessness and trustful entreaty, to which one would fain tender knightly service and protection. She will be sure to please Pedro.”1 Peter was indeed pleased and he wrote to Albert, “Could I ever forget, dear Uncle2, the part you have taken in my happiness, which is so great that I can hardly concentrate?”3

Their arranged marriage turned out to be a love match and Stephanie wrote to her mother, “We are so happy together that we do nothing but kiss and tell each other the nicest things. To me, he is so excellent, always thoughtful.. so full of regards, so tender! I can’t thank God enough for my happiness.”4

After a visit to Vendas Novas, Stephanie was struck down by diphtheria, and she died at the age of just 22 on 17 July 1859. She had asked her in-laws to assure her mother that she had been happy in Portugal. Peter was devastated by her death, and he never remarried. He died just two years later of either typhoid or cholera. Queen Victoria wrote after Stephanie’s death, “God has taken a pure, lovely angel to him. She was too good for this world, poor dear Pedro! He had found an angel to cheer his hard trying life – his melancholy character – and now in a moment snatched from him! It is too dreadful!”5

They are both buried in the Pantheon of the Braganzas.

  1. Maria Pia, Queen of Portugal by Sabrina Pollock p.14
  2. Just a term of endearment
  3. Maria Pia, Queen of Portugal by Sabrina Pollock p.14
  4. Maria Pia, Queen of Portugal by Sabrina Pollock p.14
  5. Maria Pia, Queen of Portugal by Sabrina Pollock p.15

About Moniek Bloks 2732 Articles
My name is Moniek and I am from the Netherlands. I began this website in 2013 because I wanted to share these women's amazing stories.


      • Indeed they did— just as Queen Victoria was found to have a very bad uterine prolapse after her death,after nine children hardly surprising.I am a retired medical professional so I am interested in this sort of trivia.No-one really knows why Stephanie remained intact as apparently they shared a bed— she wrote to her mother that she found this “not pleasant”

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