Date of Birth: 5 March 1625
Spouse: Henri II, duke of Nemours
Predecessor: John Louis Charles
Reign: 1694 – 1707
Summary: The line of the Longueville dukes was well known and respected in France despite being descended from an illegitimate son of Louis I, duke of Orléans, the younger son of King Charles V of France. Marie's father, Henri II, was a peer of France and served as the governor of Picardy and Normandy during the civil war known as the Fronde. In 1648, in his capacity as prince of Neuchâtel, Henri II finalized the removal of the Swiss Confederation from the Habsburg-controlled Holy Roman Empire. Thus, the Neuchâtel that Marie inherited from her three brothers in 1694 was wholly independent of any external power save the loose confederation of Swiss Cantons that surrounded it. While the rights to Longueville went extinct with the death of her youngest brother, Jean Louis Charles, upon his death, Neuchâtel remained a family possession ruled by the only daughter of the line, Marie.
Marie ruled her small principality from the safety of France. In 1657, she had married Henri of Savoy, the duke of Nemours. He died only two years later leaving her alone and childless. Much of her remaining fifty years were spent fighting for control over her marriage lands which she had a right to until death. Her stepmother did not help the matter as she fought for the rights of her own daughters to Neuchâtel and Longueville. Distraught, Marie spent all of her thirteen-year reign in Paris, writing memoirs and reporting on Parisian news to an early weekly gazette. It is unlikely that Marie ever visited Neuchâtel while she was its princess, being in her seventies and eighties. She may have visited it earlier in life, though. When she died in 1707, the rights to the territory passed to Frederick I, king in Prussia, whole ruled the territory in dynastic union until Napoléon Bonaparte deposed his descendant some hundred years later. Neuchâtel finally joined the Swiss Confederation as a full member in 1814. It became a republic in 1848 deposing the reinstated Hohenzollern monarch.
Date of Death: 16 June 1707
Successor: Frederick I
Other Monarch Deaths:
Christian, duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg-Wolfenbüttel (1623)