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In memory of the deadCollections: The burial placesof the House of Baden

The Sepulchral chapel in Hardtwald forest was the last official family burial place of the reigning House of Baden. But ruling families generally have a long tradition when it comes to burying members of the family. Where did earlier generations of the House of Baden find their final resting places?

Portrait of Margrave Ludwig Wilhelm von Baden-Baden

Margrave Ludwig Wilhelm von Baden-Baden, the "Türkenlouis."

Burial places in Backnang and Lichtenthal Monastery

The first margraves of Baden were buried in the collegiate church of Backnang; Judith, Hermann II's wife, grew up there. Later, Margravine Irmengard founded Lichtenthal Monastery in Baden-Baden and had the bones of her husband, Hermann V (died 1243), moved from Backnang to the monastery. She herself was buried next to her husband. The royal chapel was created in the monastery, and members of the House of Baden were buried here between 1288 and 1424. In 1707, a heart—buried separately from its former owner—was interred here: the heart of the "Türkenlouis."

Tomb of Bernhard III (1474–1536) in Baden-Baden

Tomb of Bernhard III in the collegiate church.

Collegiate church of Baden-Baden

The collegiate church in the historic city center of Baden-Baden later served as a burial place. Beginning in 1793, 14 members of the family were buried in the choir, including the "Türkenlouis," Margrave Ludwig Wilhelm, and his sons. However, his wife, Margravine Sibylla Augusta, had herself buried in her palace church in Rastatt. In addition to the tomb slabs in the floor, lavish funerary monuments were created in the collegiate church—medieval recumbent figures and Renaissance tombs like that of Margrave Bernhard III (1474–1536) and the magnificent epitaph of the Türkenlouis from 1752.

Pforzheim palace church

Since the division of the margraviate in 1535, the palace and collegiate church of St. Michael in Pforzheim served the Baden-Durlach line as a burial place, and it remained so after the reunification in 1771. For example, the first grand duke of Baden, Karl Friedrich (1728–1811), was buried there. Stéphanie de Beauharnais (1789–1860), the wife of Grand Duke Karl (1786–1818), was the last member of the ruling house to be buried here, because a new family burial place had been established: the city church in Karlsruhe.

Portrait of Grand Duke Karl Friedrich from Mannheim Palace, 1806
Portrait of Grand Duke Karl from Mannheim Palace, circa 1806
Portrait of Grand Duchess Stéphanie from Mannheim Palace, 1806

Grand Duke Karl Friedrich, Grand Duke Karl and Stéphanie de Beauharnais, portraits from Mannheim Palace, circa 1806.

The pyramid in the Marktplatz, Karlsruhe

The pyramid: both a grave and a tomb.

Karlsruhe city church

In 1816, architect Friedrich Weinbrenner completed the Protestant city church on the Marktplatz in Karlsruhe: Now there was a burial place close to the palace. The construction of the church also reshaped the Marktplatz. The old Konkordien church, where the grave of Margrave Karl Wilhelm was located, was also torn down. The replacement was the pyramid that can still be seen today, both the grave of and a memorial to the founder of the city, who died in 1738.

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