Ardenne, Elisabeth, Baronin von

BORN 26 Oct 1853, Zerben, Sachsen-Anhalt (now: Elbe-Parey) - DIED 5 Feb 1952, Lindau im Bodensee, Bayern
GRAVE LOCATION Stahnsdorf, Brandenburg: Südwestkirchhof, Bahnhofstrasse (Block Trinitatis, Gartenblock V, Erbbegräbnis 112a)

Youngest child of Felix von Plotho, who died in 1864. In 1873 she married the soldier Armand Léon von Ardenne with whom she lived in Berlin. In 1881 her husband was transferred to Düsseldorf. They were in contact with artistical circles and both befriended the magistrate Emil Hartwich, who was also a talented painter. She corresponded intensively with Hartwich and after they returned to Berlin in 1884, Hartwich visited them frequently.

Her husband became suspicious and discovered they had exchanged love letters. He filed for divorce and on 27 November 1886 he fought a duel with Hartwich at the Hasenheide in Berlin. Hartwich was wounded seriously and died on 1 December 1886. Von Ardenne was sentenced to two years of imprisonment but his sentence was soon reduced to eighteen days. On 15 March 1887 they were divorced and the children stayed with their father.

She was said to be the inspiration for Effie Briest in the novel by Theodor Fontane that was published in 1895. She saw her children again after twenty years. Von Ardenne died in 1919 and Elisabeth lived until 1952. She was the grandmother of the physicist Manfred von Ardenne.

Related persons
• inspired Fontane, Theodor


The grave of Elisabeth von Ardenne at the Südwestfriedhof in Stahnsdorf, Berlin.
Picture by Androom (27 Jan 2008)


• Gottschalk, Wolfgang, Südwestfriedhof Stahnsdorf, Verlag Dirk Nishen, Berlin, 1991
Elisabeth von Plotho – Wikipedia

Arendt, Erich

Published: 01 Dec 2017
Last update: 14 Feb 2022