Saxon Duchies, a group of Central German states lying between Prussian Saxony, the kingdom of Saxony, Bavaria, and Hesse-Nassau.

State.

Area in sq. m.

Pop. in 1900.

Saxe-Altenburg....................................

511

194,114

Saxe-Coburg-Gotha.............................

755

229,550

Saxe-Meiningen..................................

953

250,731

Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach.......................

1387

362,873

Altenburg and Coburg-Gotha each consists of two principal portions, with smaller fragments; Weimar-Eisenach embraces three large divisions; and Meiningen has detached parcels. Except the easternmost part of Altenburg, they are all generally hilly, embracing the Thuringian highlands, and are watered by the Elbe's tributaries - the Saale, Unstrut, Ilm, and Elster - and by the Werra. The four duchies maintain the university of Jena. At the head of each is a duke (in Weimar a grand-duke), controlled or assisted by an assembly. To the house of Saxe-Coburg, an independent duchy since 1680, belonged both the mother of Queen Victoria and the Prince Consort; the dukedom passed in 1893 to the Duke of Edinburgh, and in 1900 to the sou of the Duke of Albany.