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Infanta Adelgundes, Duchess of Guimarães

Duchess of Guimarães
The basics
About
Date of birth Wertheim am Main
Date of death Apr 15, 1946 Bern
Family
Mother: Adelaide of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg
Sister(s): Infanta Marie Anne of Portugal Infanta Maria Antonia of Portugal Infanta Maria Theresa of Portugal Infanta Maria Josepha of Portugal Infanta Maria das Neves of Portugal
Spouse: Prince Henry Count of Bardi
Father: Miguel I of Portugal
The details
Biography

D. Infanta Adelgundes, Duchess of Guimarães (10 November 1858 – 15 April 1946) was the fifth child and fourth daughter of Miguel of Portugal and his wife Adelaide of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg. A member of the House of Braganza by birth, Adelgundes became a member of the House of Bourbon-Parma through her marriage to Prince Henry of Bourbon-Parma, Count of Bardi. She was also the Regent of the Monarchic Representation of Portugal and for that reason was granted the title of Duchess of Guimarães, usually reserved for the Head of the House.

Early life

Adelgundes de Jesus Maria Francisca de Assis e de Paula Adelaide Eulália Leopoldina Carlota Micaela Rafaela Gabriela Gonzaga Inês Isabel Avelina Ana Estanislau Sofia Bernardina, Infanta de Portugal, Duquesa de Guimarães, was born in Bronnbach, Wertheim, Germany. Her father died a few days after her eighth birthday, and Adelgundes and her siblings were educated in a Catholic and conservative environment by their mother. Her maternal uncle, Furst Carl zu Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg, was like a second father to the children.

Marriage

Adelgundes married Prince Henry of Bourbon-Parma, Count of Bardi, fourth child and youngest son of Charles III, Duke of Parma and his wife Princess Louise Marie Thérèse of France, on 15 October 1876 in Salzburg, Austria–Hungary. Henry, who was 25 years old, had been previously married to Princess Maria Immacolata of Bourbon-Two Sicilies, who had died three months after their marriage at the age of 19 in 1874. Henry had taken part in the Carlist war and fought in the Battle of Lacar. War wounds turned him into an invalid.

Their union produced no issue, as her nine pregnancies all ended in miscarriages. The failed pregnancies, the last of which she suffered in 1890, were a source of great grief to the couple. They divided their time between the Castle of Seebenstein in Austria and the Vedndrami-Caligari palace in Venice. Adelgundes spent long years looking after her paralyzed husband. The Count of Bardi was described by relatives as a disagreeable man who tyrannized his sweet, petite wife. After almost 30 years of marriage, Adelgundes became a widow in 1905.

She was close to her many nephews and nieces, particularly Grand Duchess Marie-Adélaïde of Luxembourg, from the time of her abdication to her early death.

Regent-in-absentia

Between 1920 and 1928, Adelgundes acted as the regent-in-absentia on behalf of her nephew and Miguelist claimant to the Portuguese throne, Duarte Nuno, Duke of Braganza, who was only twelve years old when his father Miguel renounced his claim to the throne in favor of his son. At the beginning of her regency in 1920, Adelgundes was created 7th Duchess of Guimarães. In 1921 she authored a manifesto outlining the House of Braganza's goals for the restoration of the Portuguese monarchy. During her regency, Aldegundes signed an accord with ex-King Manuel II of Portugal, by which he recognized Duarte as his heir. Duarte lived with her at Seebenstein until the German occupation of Austria when the whole family relocated to Bern, Switzerland, where she died in Gunten on 15 April 1946 at age 87.

Titles, styles, honours and arms

Titles and styles

  • 10 November 1858 – 15 October 1876: Her Royal Highness Infanta Adelgundes of Portugal
  • 15 October 1876 – 14 April 1905: Her Royal Highness The Countess of Bardi
  • 14 April 1905 – 1920: Her Royal Highness The Dowager Countess of Bardi
  • 1920 – 15 April 1946: Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Guimarães, Dowager Countess of Bardi

Ancestry

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