German prince dies in riding accident

The successor to the House of Wettin, Prince Georg-Constantin of Saxony-Weimar-Eisenach, has died in a riding accident at the age of 41. His family is linked to many of Europe's royal houses.

Prince Georg-Constantin of Saxony-Weimar-Eisenach died Saturday in a riding accident near Apethorpe Palace in Northamptonshire, England, his family said on Tuesday night. He was the designated successor of the German aristocratic House of Saxony-Weimar-Eisenach, which is the oldest branch of the House of Wettin. He was 41-years-old.

German magazine Bunte reported that police said the incident appeared to be a "tragic accident."

One of Germany's oldest documented noble families, the House of Wettin can be traced back over a thousand years. It split into two main branches in 1485, the Ernestine line and the Albertine line. It has connections to many of Europe's royal families, including current monarchs, Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and King Philippe of Belgium, both from the Ernestine line.

Read more: Tracing Meghan Markle's 'German roots'

Hochzeit von Prinz Georg-Constantin von Sachsen-Weimar-Eisenach und Olivia Rachelle Page

Prince Georg-Constantin of Saxony-Weimar-Eisenach married Olivia Rachelle Page in 2015

Prince Georg-Constantin was the nephew of the current head of the Ernestine line, Prince Michael of Saxony-Weimar-Eisenach. According to the ancient Salian Frankish civil law code from around 500 A.D, Prince Michael's only daughter is excluded from the line of succession. The family's kingdom ceased to exist in 1918, although it still owns several castles and palaces.

Prince Georg-Constantin married British woman, Olivia Rachelle Page, in 2015 and lived in England. Prince Michael, now 71, said he was "deeply shocked" by his nephew's sudden death.

cl/sms (dpa, Bunte)

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