Philippine Welser

Philippine Welser (* 1527 in Augsburg, † April 24, 1580 at Schloss Ambras, Innsbruck in Tyrol ) was an Augsburg patrician 's daughter and the wife of Archduke Ferdinand II of Habsburg, ruler of Tirol.


Philippine Welser's father was Franz ( Friedrich) Welser (* November 2, 1497 in Augsburg, † October 29, 1572 in Ravensburg ), a wealthy merchant from Augsburg and patricians. Her mother was Anna Adler ( * 1507, † January 5, 1572 in Weiherburg / Innsbruck ). She was also a niece of V. Bartholomew Welser and was already in her youth, not only for their beauty, but also by their interest in the Mercantile and Natural Sciences on.

The emperor's son, Archduke Ferdinand II of Habsburg, ruler of Tirol married, in secret, the Philippine Civil - as dynasties used marriages to strengthen alliances and this was also planned with Ferdinand II to a not inconsiderable task. One documentary insurance Ferdinand from 1576, according to the marriage took place in January 1557. The period of acquaintance is not safe. The romantic historiography of the 19th century assumed that the first encounter is related to the Diet of Augsburg in 1548. Since Ferdinand has testified there not a single act, and in other records, which were made by persons present, Ferdinand is not mentioned, it is unlikely that Ferdinand was ever there. The first recorded acquaintance with the Welser ever is occupied for 12 May 1556 as Catherine of Loxan ( Lokšany ), an aunt of Philippine, a passport for a drive letter received cattle. It became a confidant of Ferdinand and was possibly involved in the coming together of the two. The first meeting between Philippine and Ferdinand was, in all probability, in the fall of 1556 at Castle Brzesnic ( Březnice ).

At the latest in 1559 learned Emperor Ferdinand I of the socially unacceptable marriage of his son, and a comparison was elaborated. The marriage had to be kept secret, any children were excluded from the Habsburg succession, but should be provided by the purchase of the Habsburg dominions and get crest. They should also, as well as Philippine receive financial facilities. The Emperor wanted to express his displeasure with this regulation and limit the resulting legal consequences. But as a father he wanted to grant pardon and Philippine record with their children in his protection. The receivables tried the couple to meet, if possible. For example, the Children Philippines were officially recorded as foundlings in the castle. Only the couple 's closest confidants knew that the children who were lying down on the lock threshold and abolished by Philippine, were their own children. Twins who were born later in Křivoklát ( Křivoklát ) (a boy and a girl ), have also been adopted, but already died as infants. The grandfather of the deceased, who had never seen this, let exhume their dead bodies when he learned of her death and the grandchildren in St. Vitus Cathedral in Prague bury, but at night.

From 1576 it was over with the stealth. The eldest son Andreas should be elevated to cardinal, for which a proof of the legitimate origin was needed. To this end, the Pope gave birth to the Archduke Ferdinand of his oath, which then, as best he could, was demonstrated.

The marriage was classified as a happy one. Philippine brought two sons and then twins, who died early, however, to the world.

My favorite seat Ambras Castle has been transformed into a magnificent Renaissance castle. She gathered herbs and authored a pharmacopoeia. Philippine Welser pharmaceutical knowledge are not mentioned in historical accounts, but not insignificant. " Your over 200 recipes complete manuscript is in the National Library in Vienna. Her aunt Loxan led such a pharmacopoeia. The court physician Philippines, Dr. Georg Handsch, wrote large parts of it off and verleibte them one of his medical compendia. "Besides, Philippine is attributed to a cookbook on courts of their time. The authorship is not completely secured. At least supplements but she has made ​​or can make. Even her prayer-book, with many drawings, continued up to the present time.

Furthermore, she sat down heavily on the population, which has been handed down in writing by many petitions addressed to them. Her husband wrote about her several goods and gave them plenty. She received the title Marchioness to Burgau, Landgravine to Nellenburg and Countess of Upper and Lower Hohenberg.

From 1570 to major health problems began. On April 24, 1580 passed away. Her husband ordered that she received a white marble mausoleum in Silver Chapel of Innsbruck's Hofkirche. Furthermore, he provided her servants for life and also took the poor, which had supported Philippine.

Their sons Andrew of Austria (* June 15, 1558 Castle Bresnitz, Bohemia, † November 12, 1600 Rome, Italy), Bishop of Constance and Brixen, and Charles of Austria (* November 22, 1560 Castle Křivoklát, Bohemia; † 31 October 1618 Überlingen, Germany ), imperial general in Hungary, became Margrave of Burgau (then raised part of Further Austria ).


  • De re coquinaria ( cookbook ), Handwriting about 1545, Schloss Ambras near Innsbruck. Inv.No. PA 1473
  • Cooking and pharmacopoeia. Manuscript about 1545, Schloss Ambras near Innsbruck. Inv.No. PA 1474