House of Württemberg
The Württemberg family is a German royal family and dynasty from Württemberg. The House has its origins, according to recent research in the vicinity of the Salian dynasty. Around 1080 the ancestors of modern Württemberg, called "Wirtemberg", settled in the Stuttgart area. Conrad of Württemberg built the Wirtemberg Castle. Around 1089, he was made Count, their domains only the immediate surroundings of the castle included, increased mainly through acquisitions such as those from impoverished homes of Tübingen. At the Diet of Worms in 1495, Count Eberhard V was raised to Duke by the German King Holy Roman Emperor, Maximilian I. During 1534 to 1537 Duke Ulrich introduced the Protestant Reformation, the country became Protestant. Duke Ulrich became head of the local Protestant Church. In the 18th Century, the Protestant male line became extinct, the Head of the House was succeeded by Duke Charles Alexander a Roman Catholic. Despite having a Catholic royal family, Protestantism survived as the established church, run by a church council composed by members of the nobility of Württemberg.
From 1797, with the accession of Duke Frederick II, the royal family was again Protestant. Due to the political upheavals during the reign of Napoleon I, being an ally of Napoleon, Württemberg became a part of the Confederation of the Rhine, Duke Frederick II was made Elector in May 1803, he collected and received secularized and mediated dominions, which enlarged his country in territorial extension. In January 1806 he was made King of Württemberg. In 1828 King William I adopted a new house law, the rights and obligations of the ruling family have been established, including the exclusive primogeniture in the male line as well as marriage restrictions on coequal level. In 1867 the House created the Royal Dukedom of Urach for a younger cousin, Prince Wilhelm, 1st Duke of Urach, whose parents had married morganatically in 1800, whereby their sons were excluded from ruling the kingdom. In 1871 the Royal Dukedom of Teck was created for the same dynastic reason for Francis, Duke of Teck. At the end of World War I during the German Revolution all the monarchies in Germany were abolished, King William II abdicated on 30 November 1918.
When former King William II died in 1921 the senior branch line of the House of Württemberg became extinct, the headship of the House passed to a distant relative, Duke of Württemberg. The legal line of succession of the house of Württemberg has continued to the present, although the house no longer plays any political role. For rulers, see List of Ministers-President of Württemberg. Heads of the House of Württemberg since 1918 King Wilhelm II, 1918-1921. Duke Albrecht, 1921-1939. Duke Philipp, 1939-1975. Duke Carl, since 1975; the former royal family still owns the castles Monrepos and Friedrichshafen. All branches descend from Frederick II Eugene, Duke of Württemberg on the basis of Agnatic primogeniture The first branch descends from Frederick I of Württemberg; this branch became extinct at the death of William II of Württemberg in 1921. The second branch descends from Duke Louis of Württemberg, belonged to the Teck family; this branch became extinct at the death of George Cambridge, 2nd Marquess of Cambridge in 1981.
It was not considered dynastic due to the morganatic marriage of Duke Alexander of Württemberg to Countess Claudine Rhédey von Kis-Rhéde. A female line descendant from this branch is Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom; the third branch "Carlsruhe" descends from Duke Eugen of Württemberg. This branch became extinct at the death of Duke Nicholas of Württemberg in 1903; the fourth branch descends from Duke William Frederick Philip of Württemberg, belongs to the Urach family. This branch is extant, but as the Teck branch, it is not considered dynastic because of the morganatic marriage of Duke William Frederick Philip to Baroness Wilhelmine von Tunderfedt-Rhodes in 1800; the first Duke was however created a "Serene Highness" in the 1860s. The current head of this branch is Wilhelm Duke of Urach; the fifth "Altshausen" branch descends from Duke Alexander of Württemberg. The current pretender to the throne of Württemberg, Duke Carl, belongs to this branch. Through the marriages of its female members, many royal families, descend from any of the Württemberg branches.
Royal houses include: Bourbon, Orléans, Wied-Neuwied, etc. Coat of arms of Württemberg History of Württemberg Robert Uhland: 900 Jahre Haus Württemberg. Leben und Leistung für Land und Volk. Stuttgart 1984, ISBN 3-17-008536-0 Gerhard Raff: Hie gut Wirtemberg allewege I. Das Haus Württemberg von Graf Ulrich dem Stifter bis Herzog Ludwig. Mit einer Einleitung von Hansmartin Decker-Hauff. Stuttgart 1988, ISBN 3-89850-110-8 Gerhard Raff: Hie gut Wirtemberg allewege II. Das Haus Württemberg von Herzog Friedrich I. bis Herzog Friedrich III. Mit den Linien Stuttgart, Mömpelgard, Neuenbürg, Neuenstadt am Kocher und Oels in Schlesien. Degerloch 1993, ISBN 3-89850-108-6 Gerhard Raff: Hie gut Wirtemberg allewege III. Das Haus Württemberg von Herzog Wilhelm Ludwig bis Herzog Friedrich Karl. Mit den Linien Stuttgart, Neuenstadt am Kocher, Neuenbürg, Mömpelgard und Oels, Bernstadt und Juliusburg in Schlesien und Weiltingen. Degerloch 2002, ISBN 3-89850-084-5 Sönke Lorenz, Dieter Mertens, Volker Press: Das Haus Württemberg.
Ein biographisches Lexikon. Kohlhammer, Stuttgart 1997, ISBN 3-17-013605-4 Harald Schukraft: Kleine Geschichte des Hauses Württemberg. Tübingen 2006, ISBN 3-87407-725-X Sabine Thomsen: Goldene Bräute. Württembergische Prinzessinnen auf europäischen Thronen, Silberberg Verlag, Tübingen 2010 ISBN 978-3-87407-867-2 Hofkammer des Hauses Württemberg
Ulrich V, Count of Württemberg
Ulrich V of Württemberg called "der Vielgeliebte", Count of Württemberg. He was the younger son of Count Eberhard Henriette of Mömpelgard. After the early death of his father, his mother, together with the Württembergian councils, took over the guardianship for Ulrich and his older brother Ludwig I. Ludwig reached maturity in 1426 and took rule in his own hands, until his brother Ulrich in 1433 was admitted to co-rule. After some years of common government Ulrich wed Margaret of Cleves and put through the division of the county; this was confirmed 23 April 1441. Ulrich received the northern parts with the capital in Stuttgart. Ludwig the western and southern land part with the capital in Urach, as well as the territories in Alsace; the division, limited on four years was made permanent on 25 January 1442 by the Treaty of Nürtingen. In 1444 Ulrich supported the house of Habsburg under King Friedrich III in the Old Zürich War in the fight against the Old Swiss Confederacy. Together with his allies which were margrave Albrecht Achilles of Brandenburg, the archbishop of Mainz Dietrich Schenk of Erbach as well as margrave Jakob I of Baden he formed the core of the Mergentheimer alliance which went advanced more and more against the imperial towns.
These tensions found their culmination in the feud between margrave Albrecht and the imperial town of Nuremberg in 1449. Count Ulrich's main opponent under the imperial towns was Esslingen which reduced the income of the county Württemberg by rising it's his duties clearly. However, Ulrich did not succeed in winning a determining advantage in spite of winning multiple victories against Esslingen and other imperial towns. In 1450 Ulrich gained, after the death of his brother Ludwig I, the guardianship on his nephews, the future counts of Württemberg-Urach Ludwig II and Eberhard V; this soon led to a quarrel with Frederick I, Elector Palatine, who asserted claim to the guardianship. Ludwig II died 1457; the estates of Urach passed to Count Eberhard V in 1459. In 1458 Ulrich destroyed the castle of Widdern; this increased the tensions between Frederick. Two alliance blocs had developed in the German Empire. Ulrich joined the group of Frederick III, crowned emperor in 1452, Margrave Albrecht Achilles of Brandenburg.
Their main opponents were the brother of the imperial duke Albert VI of Austria, Frederick of the Palatinate and Duke Louis IX of Bavaria. In 1460 the first military encounters between the two groups occurred. After a short armistice, Frederick III once more proclaimed imperial war against Bavaria the following year. Together with Albrecht Achilles, Ulrich assumed leadership of the imperial forces against Bavaria. In the Mainz Diocesan Feud of 1461 to 1463, which broke out shortly after, he supported Archbishop Adolf II of Nassau against his deposed predecessor Diether von Isenburg and Frederick I of the Palatinate. After skirmishes, on 30 June 1462 a battle took place near Seckenheim, Ulrich and his allies were defeated, they were taken captive by the Palatinate forces. Only on 27 April 1463 was Ulrich able to return to Stuttgart after payment of a ransom. In 1473 went Ulrich and Eberhard V a house contract one which should regulate the common hereditary result and aspire to the reunion of both württembergian land parts.
Ulrich received with Eberhard V support against his own renitenten son, Eberhard VI, by which Eberhard V influence in the Stuttgart land part won. He was married three times: First, he married in Stuttgart 29 January 1441 to Margaret of Cleves, daughter of Duke Adolf I of Cleves and Mary of Burgundy, they had one daughter: a nun in Laufen. Second, he married in Stuttgart 8 February 1445 to Elisabeth of Bavaria-Landshut, daughter of Henry XVI of Bavaria and Margarete of Austria, they had five children: a nun in Liebenau monastery. Duke Eberhard II. Henry, Count of Montbéliard. Ulrich. Elisabeth, married in Münnerstadt 13 September 1469 to Count Friedrich II of Henneberg. Third, he married in Stuttgart 11 November 1453 to Margaret of Savoy, daughter of Duke Amadeus VIII of Savoy and Mary of Burgundy, they had three daughters: Margarete, married 23 April 1469 to Count Philipp I of Eppstein-Königstein. Philippine, married 22 April/4 June 1470 to Count Jakob II of Horn. Helene, married in Waldenburg 26 February 1476 to Count Kraft VI of Hohenlohe-Neuenstein.
He had numerous illegitimate children. Eugen Schneider: Ulrich V. Graf von Württemberg. Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie. Vol. 39, Duncker & Humblot, Leipzig 1895, pp. 235–237. Thomas Fritz: Ulrich V. der Vielgeliebte. Sönke Lorenz, Dieter Mertens, Volker Press: Das Haus Württemberg. Ein biographisches Lexikon. Kohlhammer, Stuttgart 1997, pp. 86–89. Thomas Fritz: Ulrich der Vielgeliebte. Leinfelden-Echterdingen 1999
Henry I, Duke of Münsterberg-Oels
Henry the Elder of Münsterberg was an Imperial Count and Count of Kladsko. He was Duke of Silesian duchies Münsterberg and Oels and 1465–1472 Duke of Opava. At times, he served as the governor of Bohemia. Henry was descended from the Poděbrady branch of the Kunštát family, his parents were King George of Poděbrady of Kunigunde of Sternberg. In order of siblings Henry was the third son after Victor. Henry was planned by his father, George of Poděbrady, as his successor; as early as 1459 Emperor Frederick III appointed Henry's older brother Victor to imperial count. On 7 December 1462 the Emperor appointed Henry and his younger half-brother of the same name Henry the Younger to imperial count. At the same time, the Emperor confirmed the appointment by King George in 1459 of Victor, Henry the Elder and Henry the Younger as dukes of Münsterberg and counts of Kladsko. After their father acquired the Duchy of Opava in 1464, he gave this duchy in 1465 to his sons Henry the Elder and Henry the Younger. Although Henry and his brothers adhered to the Catholic faith, the Pope refused to recognize their royal titles because the Ban imposed on George of Poděbrady should apply to his sons.
After King George's death on 22 March 1471, Henry was appointed to supreme governor of the Kingdom of Bohemia until the arrival of the new king. In this position he received on 10 August 1471 the newly elected King Vladislas II of Bohemia in Kladsko, on his way from Kraków to Prague for the coronation. Henry the Elder was appointed Governor for a period of absence of the king. King George's possessions were divided among his sons according to the inheritance plan in 1472. Henry the Elder received the County of Kladsko, the Silesian Duchy of Münsterberg, including Frankenstein and the East Bohemian dominions Náchod, Vízmburk Castle, Kunětice Mountain Castle and the lands of the now defunct monasteries of Opatovice and Sezemice, devastated in the Hussite Wars. King Vladislas confirmed on these possessions on 3 and 29 April 1472. After the emperor had confirmed the privileges for the vassalage of the county of Kladsko, he asked his subjects in Kladsko to paid homage to Duke Henry; the estates of the county paid homage to the new Duke at his castle in Kladsko.
As the first count of Kladsko Heinrich resided with his family on Kladsko Castle, where his court was located. At first, the office of Landeshauptmann was held by Hans of Warnsdorf, appointed by George of Poděbrady, he was succeeded by in 1474 by Hans of Bernstein, succeeded by Hans Pannwitz of Rengersdorf in 1477. His marshalls were, in order, Jan Horušovsky of Roztok, Jan Fulstein of Slavkov and Zbyněk of Buchov, his comptroller was George of Bischofsheim. Although Henry himself had an excellent knowledge of the German language, most of the documents produced in his office were written in Czech. At the request of the Abbot Peter of Broumov, Heinrich the Elder's troops entered the city of Broumov on 24 April 1472 without a fight; the city had been occupied by captain Franz von Hag of the Bohemian counter-king Matthias Corvinus in 1469, the Hungarian soldiers still were in the city. Thus, Henry acquired the surrounding land, he ruled it until 1483 and incorporated it into the county of Kladsko, with the consent of king Vladislas II.
Hans of Warnsdorf went at Henry's request. Because of the associated threats, some Silesian towns voluntarily paid war funds and contributions to Duke Henry. On 9 January 1473 the Pope lifted the interdict imposed on George of Poděbrady and his sons, gave them absolution; that same year and his brothers Victor and Henry the Younger tried to resolve their dispute about the Crown of Saint Wenceslas. To this end, they invited representatives of Bohemia, Poland and Lausitz to participate in negotiations in Opava, held by Victor at the time. Although the negotiations were not successful, King Vladislas promised to erase the brothers's debts. To this end, taxes would be levied. In a dispute in 1473 between the county's Free Judges and the cities of Kladsko, Bystrzyca Kłodzka, Radków and Lądek-Zdrój about the brewing right Henry decided in favor of the cities. In 1477 Henry annexed the barony of Homole, which hitherto had belonged to the Bohemian circle of Hradec Králové, to the County of Kladsko, he enlarged Homole with the parishes Lewin and Czermna and the villages of Słone and Brzozowie.
On 13 November of that year, Vladislas II confirmed the continuing validity of Henry's possession of the Kunětice Mountain Castle and the former monastic estates of Opatovice and Sezemice and three days he gave Henry Frankenstein as a hereditary fief. In 1477, Henry participated in the peace negotiations between Bohemia and Silesia in Broumov as a representative Vladislas II, together with William Krušina of Lichtenburg, Peter Kdulinec, Christoph von Talkenberg auf Talkenstein and Hans of Warnsdorf; the negotiations did not produce a lasting peace. On 3 July 1479, Henry welcomed the anti-king Matthias Corvinus of Poland in Olomouc, on behalf of king Vladislas II of Bohemia. Before 1491, Henry the Elder received Litice Castle from his eldest brother Boček. In 1492, a dispute arose between Henry and King Vladislas over the rule of the baronies of Poděbrady and Kostomlaty; the king had claimed these lands for himself after the death of Henry the Younger for themselves, although Henry's testament had awarded
Albrecht III Achilles, Elector of Brandenburg
Albert III was Elector of Brandenburg from 1471 until his death, the third from the House of Hohenzollern. A member of the Order of the Swan, he received the cognomen Achilles because of his knightly qualities and virtues, he ruled in the Franconian principalities of Ansbach from 1440 and Kulmbach from 1464. Albert was born at the Brandenburg residence of Tangermünde as the third son of the Nuremberg burgrave Frederick I and his wife, the Wittelsbach princess Elisabeth of Bavaria-Landshut, his father served as governor in Brandenburg. After passing some time at the court of Emperor Sigismund, Albert took part in the Hussite Wars, afterwards distinguished himself whilst assisting Sigismund's successor, the Habsburg king Albert II of Germany, against the Hussites and their Polish allies. In 1435, he and is eldest brother. On the division of territory which followed his father's death in 1440, Albert received the Principality of Ansbach, while John took over the rule as Brandenburg elector. Although Albert's resources were meager, he soon took a leading place among the German princes and was prominent in resisting the attempts of the towns to obtain self-government.
Albert's plans to re-unite the former Duchy of Franconia under his rule failed: in 1443, he formed a league directed against the Imperial City of Nuremberg, over which his late father had exercised the rights of burgrave. It was not until 1448, that he found a pretext for attack. After initial military successes in the First Margrave War, he was defeated at the Battle of Pillenreuther Weiher, resulting in the Treaty of Bamberg, which forced Albert to return all of the conquered territory and to recognize the independence of Nuremberg and its associated towns. Albert supported the Habsburg emperor Frederick III in his struggle with the princes who desired reforms in the Holy Roman Empire, in return for this loyalty received many marks of favour from Frederick, including extensive judicial rights which aroused considerable irritation among neighbouring rulers. In 1457, Albert arranged a marriage between his eldest son John, Margaret, daughter of William III, Landgrave of Thuringia, who inherited the claims upon Hungary and Bohemia of her mother, a granddaughter of Emperor Sigismund.
The attempt to secure these thrones for the Hohenzollerns through this marriage failed, a similar fate befell Albert's efforts to revive in his own favour the disused title of duke of Franconia. The sharp dissensions which existed among the princes over the question of reform culminated in the Bavarian War from 1459 to 1463, when Albert was confronted with a league under the leadership of Elector Palatine Frederick I and his Wittelsbach cousin Duke Louis IX of Bavaria-Landshut. Though defeated in the struggle, Albert continued fighting against Prince-bishop Rudolf II of Würzburg and forged an alliance with his former enemy, the Bohemian king George of Poděbrady, a step which caused Pope Paul II to place him under the ban. Albert permanently resided at Ansbach from 1460. In 1471, Albert became Elector of Brandenburg, owing to the abdication of his remaining brother, Elector Frederick II, the year before. Now sole ruler over the entire Hohenzollern estates, he was soon engaged in their administration.
By the 1472 Treaty of Prenzlau he ended the War of the Succession of Stettin, bringing the Duchy of Pomerania under his supremacy. Having established his right to levy a tonnage on wines in the mark, he issued in February 1473 the Dispositio Achillea, which decreed that the Margraviate of Brandenburg should descend in its entirety to the eldest son, while the younger sons should receive the Franconian possessions of the family. After treating in vain for a marriage between one of his sons and Princess Mary of Burgundy and heiress of Duke Charles the Bold, Albert handed over the government of Brandenburg to his eldest son John Cicero, returned to his Franconian possessions. Albert's main attention afterwards was claimed by the business of the empire. Ill, he took part in the imperial election of 1486 which selected Maximilian of Habsburg as King of the Romans at Frankfurt Cathedral. A few weeks in March, Albert died while still staying in Frankfurt, he left a considerable amount of treasure. Albert was married twice.
First, he married 12 November 1446 Margaret of Baden, daughter of Margrave Jakob I of Baden and Catherine of Lorraine. From this marriage he had following children: Wolfgang and died in 1450. John Cicero, Elector of Brandenburg. Friedrich, died young. Ursula, married Duke Henry I, Duke of Münsterberg-Oels. Elisabeth, married Eberhard II, Duke of Württemberg. Margareta, abbess of the Poor Clares convent at Hof. Margaret died 24 October 1457 and in 1458 Albert married Anna, daughter of Frederick II, Elector of Saxony and Margarete of Austria, their children were: Frederick I, Margrave in Ansbach since 1486 and Bayreuth since 1495. Amalie, married Kaspar, Count Palatine of Zweibrücken. Anna and died in 1462. Barbara, married: in Berlin 11 October 1472 to Duke Henry XI
George John I, Count Palatine of Veldenz
George John I was the Duke of Veldenz from 1544 until 1592. George John was born in 1543 as the only son of Count Palatine of Veldenz. By the Marburg Contract in 1443 his father obtained the County of Veldenz from the line of Palatinate-Zweibrücken; the following year his father died and the one-year-old George John succeeded him. In 1563 he married Anna of Sweden, the daughter of King Gustav I of Sweden, beginning a long-running connection between the Electorate of the Palatinate and Sweden. In 1553 after the Heidelberg War of Succession which regulated the mutual inheritance of all the lines of the House of Wittelsbach, George John obtained the County of Lützelstein, he attempted to develop his Alsatian territories to be the focus of his state, which led to him building the city of Phalsbourg in 1570 and populating it with Protestant refugees from the Duchy of Lorraine. The project was so grand and unaffordable that in 1583 he was forced to sell the city and half the County of Lützelstein to Lorraine.
George John was buried in the cities' church. George John married Anna of Sweden, daughter of King Gustavus I, in 1563 and had the following children: George Gustavus Anne Margaret John Rupert Anne Margaret Ursula, second wife of Louis III, Duke of Württemberg Joanna Elizabeth John Augustus Louis Philip Maria Anne Catherine Ursula George John Château de La Petite-Pierre, castle which became his residence in 1566 and which he rebuilt
Christoph, Duke of Württemberg
Christoph of Württemberg, Duke of Württemberg ruled as Duke of Württemberg from 1550 until his death in 1568. In November 1515, only months after his birth, his mother, Sabina of Bavaria, fled to the court of her parents in Munich. Young Christoph stayed in Stuttgart with his father, Duke Ulrich; when the Swabian League mobilized troops against Ulrich, he brought them to Castle Hohentübingen. In 1519 Württemberg came under Austrian rule after the castle surrendered and Duke Ulrich was banished. Christoph was sent to the court of Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I in Innsbruck where he grew up and was able to gain political experience under Habsburg tutelage. Maximilian's successor Charles V took him on his travels through Europe. Meanwhile, his father Ulrich had regained Württemberg from the Austrians in 1534 and Christoph was sent to the French court, where he became embroiled in France's wars against the Habsburgs. At the end of the 1530s, Christoph converted to Protestantism. In 1542, the Treaty of Reichenweier installed him as the governor of the Württemberg region of Montbéliard.
On succeeding his father in 1550, Christoph was forced to make high payments to avoid charges of treason by Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand I. In subsequent years, he re-organized the entire administration of the state, he reformed and supported the educational system. Christoph gave Amandenhof castle near Urach to Hans von Ungnad who used it as the seat of the South Slavic Bible Institute. Christoph went to great efforts to boost Württemberg's profile. For example, he hosted many celebrations. In 1544 he married Anna Maria, daughter of George, Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach, with whom he fathered twelve children. Eberhard Hedwig – married Louis IV, Landgrave of Hesse-Marburg Elisabeth – married Georg Ernst, Count von Henneberg-Schleusingen.
Eberhard IV, Count of Württemberg
Eberhard IV of Württemberg was the ruling Count of Württemberg from 1417 until his death. He was elder son of Count Eberhard Antonia Visconti. On 13 November 1397 he became engaged to Henriette of Mömpelgard. Henriette was the oldest daughter and main heiress of Henry of Mömpelgard, who died in 1396 one year before his father, Count Stephan of Mömpelgard, their marriage, which occurred in 1407 at the latest, caused the county of Mömpelgard to become part of Württemberg. Eberhard IV had a child with Agnes von Dagersheim. Eberhard IV took active part in management of the state from 1407. Starting 1409 he governed the county of Mömpelgard together with Henriette. After the death of Eberhard III on 16 May 1417, he became the ruler of all of Württemberg. At the time of his death on 2 July 1419, Eberhard's two sons, who would become Count Louis I, Ulrich Count Ulrich V, were only seven and six years old, respectively. A guardianship government of Henriette and up to 32 Württembergian councilors was instituted.
He was married to Henriette of Mömpelgard and had two sons and a daughter: Anna of Württemberg, married Philip I, Count of Katzenelnbogen Louis I of Württemberg. Ulrich V of Württemberg; this article is translated from that on the German Wikipedia