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Explorers and Adventurers Monarchs Writers and Poets

The people included here were either born in Britain, died in Britain,
became British citizens, became Prime Minister of Britain or ascended the British throne.

Two of Britain's monarchs were born in Germany, one of whom is buried there, a result of the ascendancy of George I to the British throne in 1714 and the subsequent rule of the House of Hanover for almost two centuries during which six of the royal consorts were German-born.

George I

George Frideric Handel was born as Georg Friedrich Händel in Halle, Saxony in 1685. From 1712 onwards he lived in London until his death in 1759. He is buried in Westminster Abbey.

George Frideric Handel
Famous people buried at Westminster Abbey
George Frideric Handel website
Birthplace museum, Halle

The youngest son of Johann Sebastian Bach, Johann Christian Bach was born in Leipzig in 1735. In 1762 he moved to London where he stayed until his death in 1782. He is buried in London at St Pancras.

Johann Christian Bach

Famous People

Karl Marx was born in Trier (then Rheinish Prussia) in 1818. He later emigrated to Paris where he met Friedrich Engels with whom he wrote The Communist Manifesto. In 1849, after having lived in Brussels and Cologne, he moved with his family to London. He died in 1883 and is buried in Highgate Cemetary.

Karl Marx
Famous London cemeteries

Inventors and Scientists
Born in 1738 in Hanover, the astronomer William Herschel moved to England in 1755, where after settling in Bath in 1766, he started to build his own telescopes. In 1781 he discovered the planet Uranus, the first planet to be discovered since ancient times, and the first ever by telescope. The following year George III made Herschel his private astronomer. To be near the King, Herschel moved to Slough near Windsor, where he remained until his death in 1822.

William Herschel


House of Hanover
House of Hanover
George I was born at Leine Castle in Osnabrueck, Hanover in 1660. He acceded to the British throne in 1714 as the first monarch of the House of Hanover, due to him being a great-grandson of James I. Taken ill in his carriage while en route to Hanover in 1727 he died at Leine Castle in the same room where he had been born. He is buried at Herrenhausen Palace, the only British monarch to be buried in a foreign country other than France.

George I

His son and successor George II - the last British monarch to appear on a battlefield when he fought at the Battle of Dettingen in 1743 - was born at Herrenhausen Palace in Hanover in 1683. He ruled from 1727 until his death in 1760. He was the last monarch to be buried at Westminster Abbey.

George II
Battle of Dettingen
Monarchs buried at Westminster Abbey

Nobel Prize Winners

The physicist Max Born was born in Breslau (then in Germany) in 1882. He emigrated to England becoming a British citizen. In 1954 he shared the Nobel Prize for Physics with the German Walther Bothe.

Physiology or Medicine
The biochemist Hans Krebs was born in Hildesheim in 1900. He emigrated to England in 1934 later becoming a British citizen. In 1953 he shared the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine with the German Fritz Lipmann for his discovery of the citric acid cycle. He died in 1981 in Oxford, England.

The biochemist Ernst Boris Chain was born in Berlin in 1906. He emigrated to England where he became a British citizen. In 1945 he shared the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine with the Scottish scientist Alexander Fleming and the Australian Howard Florey for their work on the discovery and production of penicillin. He died in 1979 in Castlebar, Ireland.

Ernst Boris Chain

The biophysicist Bernard Katz was born in Leipzig in 1911. He emigrated to England in 1935 and later became a British citizen. In 1970 he shared the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine with the American Julius Axelrod and the Swedish scientist Ulf von Euler for their work on neural transmissions.

Bernard Katz

Royal Consorts and Heirs

House of Tudor
Anne of Cleves was born in 1515 in Düsseldorf. In 1540 she became Henry VIII's fourth wife when she married him at Greenwich in London. In the same year the marriage was annulled and Henry married Catherine Howard. Anne died in London in 1557, surviving Henry and all his other five wives. She was buried in Westminster Abbey.

Anne of Cleves
Royal consorts buried at Westminster Abbey

House of Hanover
Sophia Dorothea of Zell was born in 1666 at Zell Castle where in 1682 she married the future George I. The following year she gave birth to the future George II. She never became Queen as her husband, who acceded to the throne in 1714, divorced her in 1694 and had her confined to Ahlden Castle until her death in 1726. She was also buried there.

Sophia Dorothea of Zell
George I

Caroline of Ansbach was born in 1683 at Ansbach, Bavaria. In 1705 she married George, Electoral Prince of Hanover at Herrenhausen Palace and in 1727 he acceded to the British throne as George II. She remained Queen until her death in 1737 and on her husband's death in 1760 her grandson succeeded to the throne as George III. She was buried in Westminster Abbey.

Caroline of Ansbach
George II
Royal consorts buried at Westminster Abbey

George II's eldest son Frederick Lewis, Prince of Wales was born in Hanover in 1707. He died in 1751 before he could become King and it was his son who was crowned George III in 1760.

Frederick Louis, Prince of Wales

Sophia Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz was born in 1744 in Mirow, Mecklenburg-Strelitz. In 1761 she married George III at St James's Palace in London and remained Queen until her death at Kew Palace in Surrey in 1818. She is buried in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle. She gave birth to the future George IV in 1762 and William IV in 1765 and was also the grandmother of Queen Victoria.

Sophia Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
Royal consorts buried at Windsor

Caroline of Brunswick was born in 1768 at Brunswick, Lower Saxony. In 1795 she married her cousin the Prince of Wales at St James's Palace in London, but after the birth of Princess Charlotte in 1796 they lived separately. Caroline died at Hammersmith in London in 1821 shortly after her husband's Coronation as George IV. She was buried in Brunswick.

Caroline of Brunswick

Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen was born in 1792 in Meiningen, Thuringia. In 1818 she married the future William IV at Kew Palace in Surrey. She was Queen from 1830 until her husband's death in 1837. She died in London in 1849 and was buried in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle.

Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen
Royal consorts buried at Windsor

In 1819 Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha was born at Rosenau Castle near Coburg, Bavaria. In 1840 he married his cousin Queen Victoria at St James's Palace in London and the following year the future Edward VII was born. Albert died in 1861 and is buried at Frogmore House in Windsor Great Park where in 1901 his wife was buried beside him.

Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha
Royal consorts buried at Windsor

World Heritage Sites

Since 1978 forty-one sites (the Dresden Elbe Valley site was removed from the list in 2009 after the building of a bridge across the river) of cultural, historic and natural importance in Germany have been designated as a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO.

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