The Ducal House of Saxe Coburg and Gotha is a branch of the German noble house of Wettin; it has its ancestral seat in Coburg. Its progenitors ruled from 1423 to 1547 as Electoral Princes of Saxony and later as Dukes of Coburg. The Saxon duchy of Gotha was acquired in 1826; since that time the family bears the name of Saxe Coburg and Gotha. The former ducal dominions lie within the present-day states of Bavaria and Thuringia. The 19th century was the golden age of the House of Saxe Coburg and Gotha. During that era, through diplomacy and shrewd marriage politics, it became the preeminent dynasty world-wide. The “Coburgs” were closely related to all European princely families and furnished the sovereigns of four royal dynasties: Belgium, Portugal, Great Britain and Bulgaria. To some extent, these continue to use the Coburg name to this day and maintain personal contact with the ancestral House.
Coburg is a town located on the Itz River in Bavaria, Germany. Its 2014 population is 40,982. Long one of the Thuringian states of the Wettin line, it joined with Bavaria by popular vote in 1920. Before 1918, it was one of the capital cities in the duchy of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and the duchy of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld.
Castle Callenberg has been owned and used by the Saxe-Coburg und Gotha Ducal Family for centuries. It has evolved over time to reflect the stylistic and architectural preferences of generations of dukes and princes. However it remains a constant link between the family’s past and present and it is proudly owned by the Saxe-Coburg and Gotha family today.
The Veste Coburg, or Coburg fortress, is one of Germany’s largest castles. It is situated on a hill above the city of Coburg. The Veste Coburg (also called the “Franconian Crown”) dominates the town of Coburg in Bavaria’s border with Thuringia. In the twentieth century, the castle was the residence of Charles Edward, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, a grandson of Queen Victoria, who was also (until 1919) the 2nd Duke of Albany in the United Kingdom. The Veste now houses museums, including a collection art objects and paintings that belonged to the ducal family of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, a large collection of arms and armor, significant examples of early modern coaches and sleighs, and important collections of prints, drawings and coins.
The Coburg rooms in the Castle of Greinburg in Austria bring alive through their artefacts the history of one of the most significant ruling families in Europe. The works of art which have been handed down and conserved through generations bear witness to the splendour and the far reaching family connections of the House of Coburg.
Gotha is the fifth-largest city in Thuringia, Germany, located 20 kilometres (12 miles) west of Erfurt and 25 km (16 miles) east of Eisenach with a population of 44,000. The city is the capital of the district of Gotha and was also a residence of the Ernestine Wettins from 1640 until the end of monarchy in Germany in 1918. The House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha originating here spawned many European rulers, including the royal houses of England, Belgium, Portugal (until 1910) and Bulgaria (until 1946).
The castle Friedenstein rises on a hill overlooking the city and is a largely preserved historical monument of the early Baroque in Germany. This, the halls and rooms are in their original form and design are largely contributed. In addition, the facilities and stocks are in the same place for centuries; Castle and former Ducal Museum, Castle and Ekhof Theater, Art and science collection, Archives and Library, and Park and Orangery Garden.