Conrad von Reventlow

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Conrad, Count of Reventlow
Conrad Reventlow, grand chancellor.jpg
Spouse(s) Anna Margrethe Gabel
Sophie Amalie von Hahn
Noble family Reventlow
Father Ditlev Reventlow
Mother Christine Rantzau
Born 21 April 1644
Copenhagen, Denmark
Died 21 July 1708,
Clausholm estate, Denmark
Buried Schleswig Cathedral, Germany

Conrad, Count von Reventlow (April 21, 1644 – July 21, 1708) was a Danish statesman and the first "Grand Chancellor of Denmark" (Danish: Danmarks storkansler), a predecessor title of the Prime Minister of Denmark, from 1699 until his death. His chancellorship occurred during the reign of King Frederick IV.

Military career[edit]

After attending university, Reventlow was called to the Danish Court in 1665, where he rose through various positions of responsibility. In the 1670s, he became a colonel in the Danish military. He recruited a regiment and distinguished himself in the prevailing intra-Scandinavian warfare of the day.[1]

In 1700, Reventlow was deeply involved in the negotiations for peace with Sweden during that country's naval blockade of Copenhagen, an early event in the Great Northern War. Both France and the United Kingdom dealt extensively with Reventlow in their efforts to pressure Denmark to declare peace, in order to prevent a wider war from spreading into Europe.[2]

Councillor and Grand Chancellor[edit]

In 1685, Reventlow used his influence as a councillor to the court on behalf of privateer Benjamin Raule, to promote Danish acquisition of the island of St. Thomas in the West Indies.[3]


Twice married, his first wife was Anna Margarethe Gabel (1651-1678), and his second, Sophie Amalie Hahn (1664-1722). Count Reventlow's youngest daughter, Anna Sophie (1693-1743), married Frederick IV in 1721, becoming the first Queen of Denmark not to have been born a princess. His eldest daughter Christine Sophie (1672-1757) became an influential advisor to her sister and brother-in-law, the Danish queen and king. Another daughter, Ulrikke Eleonor (1690-1754), married Ferdinand Anton Gyldenløve, a grandson of King Frederick III by his mistress, Margrethe Pape. His son, Christian Detlev Reventlow, also played a prominent political role.

His sarcophagus in the Schleswig Cathedral (Schleswiger Dom) was designed by the renowned sculptor Thomas Quellinus.

Political offices
Preceded by
Grand Chancellor of Denmark
1699 – 1708
Succeeded by
Christian Christophersen Sehested



  1. ^ Kannegaard and Skeel Family Tree of Greve Conrad Reventlow.
  2. ^ Sir George Rook in Oscar Browning, ed., Publications of the Navy Records Society, Vol. IX, (1898 [1700-02]) p. 100.
  3. ^ Waldemar Westergaard, The Danish West Indies Under Company Rule (1671-1754) (1917), p. 76.

Additional sources[edit]

  • Jirí Louda and Michael MacLagan, Lines of Succession: Heraldry of the Royal Families of Europe, 2nd edition (London, U.K.: Little, Brown and Company, 1999), table 19.

External links[edit]