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Princess Calixta of Lippe

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Princess Calixta
Princess Waldemar of Prussia
Born(1895-10-14)14 October 1895
Potsdam, German Empire
Died15 December 1982(1982-12-15) (aged 87)
Schloss Reinhartshausen, Erbach, Hesse, Germany
Erbach, Hesse, Germany
Prince Waldemar of Prussia
(m. 1919; died 1945)
Full name
Calixta Agnes Adelaide Irmgard Helene Caroline Elise Emma
FatherPrince Friedrich Wilhelm of Lippe-Biesterfeld
MotherCountess Gisela Berta of Ysenburg and Büdingen in Meerholz

Princess Calixta Agnes Adelaide Irmgard Helene Caroline Elise Emma of Lippe (14 October 1895 - 15 December 1982) was the wife of Prince Waldemar of Prussia, eldest son of Prince Henry of Prussia.[1][2]

Family and early life[edit]

Countess Calixta of Lippe-Biesterfeld was born in Potsdam as the eldest child of Count Friedrich Wilhelm of Lippe-Biesterfeld (son of Julius, Count of Lippe-Biesterfeld) and his wife Countess Gisela Berta Adelheid Klothilde Emma Klementine of Ysenburg und Büdingen zu Meerholz.[1] Her father was a colonel with the Prussian army.[2] In 1905, her father assumed princely rank, causing Calixta to be granted the rank of princess with the style Her Serene Highness.[1][2]

Princess Calixta was a first cousin of Princess Marie Adelheid of Lippe, as their fathers were brothers. Calixta and Marie Adelheid were also first cousins-once removed of Prince Bernhard of Lippe-Biesterfeld, consort of Juliana of the Netherlands.


File:Pince Waldemar and Princess Calixta wedding.jpg
Calixta and her husband Prince Waldemar of Prussia the day of their marriage.

On 14 August 1919 at Hemmelmark, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany, Calixta married Prince Waldemar of Prussia, the eldest son of Prince Henry of Prussia.[1][2] [3] As such, he was a nephew of Emperor Wilhelm II.

Prince Waldemar suffered from haemophilia, and consequently there were no children.[2] He spent much of his life in a hospital, and surprised many by choosing to marry.

World War II[edit]

Calixta and Waldemar resided in Bavaria for most of World War II but were at castle in Kamenz in Silesia as the war ended.[2] In the spring of 1945, the couple fled to Tutzing from approaching Russian troops, [4] as Calixta was unwilling to leave him at the mercy of the Red Army, despite Waldemar being in the throes of an attack of haemophilia.[2][5] After a long and painfully debilitating journey through Prague, they finally reached Tutzing, a few miles south of Munich, where Waldemar received a blood transfusion.[5] The American army overran the area the following day, and diverted all medical resources and supplies to treat nearby concentration camp victims.[5] Consequently, these actions prevented Waldemar's German doctor from treating him.[5] There, Waldemar died on 2 May 1945 from blood loss, due to a lack of blood transfusion facilities.[2]

Though a decree was issued declaring it illegal to have private graves dug until the needs of the camps had been satisfied, Calixta succeeded in persuading a gravedigger to help her bury her husband.[5] She was alone, however, when she undressed her husband's body in preparation for burial, and was attacked by a burglar and robbed of Waldemar's clothes and pajamas.[5] She soon discovered that the coffin was too small, as her husband's elbows would not fit into the space below the lid; the following day, she was forced to break her husband's arms, successfully sealing the lid of the coffin and laying him to rest.[5]

Calixta survived her husband by over 35 years, residing at Reinhartshausen Castle near Erbach, a Stadtteil of Eltville, Hessen, West Germany, where she died on 15 December 1982.[1][2]

Titles and styles[edit]

  • 14 October 1895 – 1905: Her Illustrious Highness Countess Calixta of Lippe-Biesterfeld
  • 1905 – 14 August 1919: Her Serene Highness Princess Calixta of Lippe
  • 14 August 1919 – 15 December 1982: Her Royal Highness Princess Calixta of Prussia



  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Lundy, Darryl. "The Peerage: Calixta Agnes Prinzessin zur Lippe-Biesterfeld". Retrieved 29 September 2010.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 "Calixta of Lippe – (1895–1982), German princess consort of Prussia". A Bit Of History. Archived from the original on 15 July 2011. Retrieved 29 September 2010. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)
  3. David Duff "Hessian Tapestry" 1967 p 289
  4. Douglas Liversidge "The Mountbattens: From Battenberg to Windsor" 1978 p 22
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 "The Feudal Herald". Pegasus Associates and The Baronage Press. Retrieved 29 September 2010.

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