Carl Christian Joseph of Saxony - Duke of Courland

Carl Christian Joseph of Saxony

Born Jul 13, 1733 in Dresden
Died Jun 16, 1796 in Dresden


Duke of Courland
Karl Christian Joseph Ignaz Eugen Franz Xaver von Polen und Sachsen


Son of August III of Poland and Maria Josepha of Poland.

In 1758 he was elected to succeed the former Duke of Courland, Ernst Johann von Biron, who had been unseated for his extravagant and autocratic habits. However, in 1763 he was himself dethroned and replaced by Biron, by the influence of Empress Katharina of Russia. In Boswell's words "Prince Charles of Saxony, Duke of Courland, of which last dignity the Russian tyrant has deprived him." (Boswell on the Grand Tour I, 1763-1764, p. 112)

Life with Boswell: 

Boswell was introduced to Prince Charles on September 29, whom he described as "a charming prince, perfectly gay and affable", at an entertainment at the Palace of the Late Prince Maurice of Anhalt-Dessau (d. 1760). The palace had succeeded to Princess Wilhelmine, "who gave there this day a splendid entertainment" to the deposed Duke of Courland. At the ball that same evening, "The Duke of Courland danced the best of any man I ever saw."