Facts and Events
Princess Charlotte Augusta of Wales (Charlotte Augusta; 7 January 1796 – 6 November 1817) was the only child of George, Prince of Wales (later to become King George IV) and Caroline of Brunswick. Had she outlived both her grandfather King George III and her father, she would have become Queen of the United Kingdom, but she died following childbirth at the age of 21.
Charlotte's parents disliked each other from before their arranged marriage and soon separated. The Prince of Wales left most of Charlotte's care to governesses and servants, but only allowed her limited contact with the Princess of Wales, who eventually left the country. As Charlotte grew to adulthood, her father pressured her to marry William, Hereditary Prince of Orange (later King of the Netherlands), but after initially accepting him, Charlotte soon broke off the intended match. This resulted in an extended contest of wills between her and her father, and finally the Prince of Wales permitted her to marry Prince Leopold of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld (later King of the Belgians). After a year and a half of happy marriage, Charlotte died after giving birth to a stillborn son.
Charlotte's death set off tremendous mourning among the British, who had seen her as a sign of hope and a contrast both to her unpopular father and to her grandfather, whom they deemed mad. As she had been King George III's only legitimate grandchild, there was considerable pressure on the King's unmarried sons to find wives. King George III's fourth son, Edward, Duke of Kent, fathered the eventual heir, Victoria, who was born 18 months after Charlotte's death.