House of Hohenzollern
|House of Hohenzollern|
|Titles||Count of Zollern
Margrave of Brandenburg
Duke of Prussia
Burgrave of Nuremberg
Margrave of Bayreuth
Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach
King of Prussia
Prince of Neuchâtel
King of Romania
|Founder||Burgrave Frederick I of Nuremberg|
Germany and Prussia:
HM King Michael (1947–)
|Deposition||Germany and Prussia:
1918: German Revolution
1947: Stalinist take-over
|Cadet branches||Hohenzollern-Hechingen (extinct)
The House of Hohenzollern is a noble family and royal dynasty of electors, kings, and emperors of Brandenburg, Prussia, Germany, and Romania. It originated in the area around the town of Hechingen in Swabia during the 11th century. They took their name from their ancestral home, the Burg Hohenzollern castle near Hechingen.
The family uses the motto Nihil Sine Deo (English: Nothing Without God). The family coat of arms, first adopted in 1192, began as a simple shield quarterly sable and argent. A century later, in 1317, Frederick IV, Burgrave of Nuremberg, added the head and shoulders of a hound as a crest. Later quartering reflected heiresses’ marriages into the family.
The family split into two branches, the Catholic Swabian branch and the Protestant Franconian branch, known also as the Kirschner line. The Swabian branch ruled the area of Hechingen until the revolution of 1848/49. The Franconian branch was more successful: members of the Franconian branch became Margrave of Brandenburg in 1415 and Duke of Prussia in 1525. Following the union of these two Franconian lines in 1618, the Kingdom of Prussia was created in 1701, eventually leading to the unification of Germany and the creation of the German Empire in 1871, with the Hohenzollerns as hereditary emperors and kings of Prussia.
- 1 Origins
- 2 Counts of Zollern (1061–1204)
- 3 Franconian branch
- 4 Brandenburg-Prussian Branch
- 5 Line of succession (1918 to present)
- 6 Swabian Senior Branch
- 7 Kings of the Romanians
- 8 Coat of arms of the Hohenzollerns, Brandenburg, Prussia, and the German Empire
- 9 Buildings of the Hohenzollern
- 10 See also
- 11 References
- 12 External links
One of the most prominent ruling houses in the history of Europe, the Hohenzollern Dynasty played a major role in the history of Germany from the late Middle Ages until the end of World War I. It takes its name from a castle in Swabia first mentioned as Zolorin or Zolre (the modern Hohenzollern, south of Tübingen, in the Land Baden-Württemberg).
Counts of Zollern (1061–1204)
The oldest known mention of the Zollern was in 1061 by Berthold of Reichenau. It was a county, ruled by the counts of Zollern, whose descent has been attempted to be linked (without success) to the Burchardinger dynasty.
- until 1061: Burkhard I
- before 1125: Frederick I
- between ca. 1125 and 1142: Frederick II, eldest son of Frederick I:XLI
- between ca. 1143 and 1150-1155: Burkhard II, 2nd oldest son of Frederick I:XLI
- between ca. 1150-1155 and 1160: Gotfried of Zimmern, 4th oldest son of Frederick I:XLI
- before 1171 – c. 1200: Frederick III/I (son of Frederick II, also Burgrave of Nuremberg)
Count Frederick III of Zollern was a loyal retainer of the Holy Roman Emperors Frederick Barbarossa and Henry VI, and around 1185 he married Sophia of Raabs, the daughter of Conrad II, Burgrave of Nuremberg.
After the death of Conrad II, often referred to as Kurt II who left no male heirs, Frederick III was granted the burgraviate of Nuremberg in 1192 as Burgrave Frederick I of Nuremberg-Zollern. Since then the family name has been Hohenzollern.
After Frederick's death, his sons partitioned the family lands between themselves:
- The older brother, Frederick IV, received the county of Zollern and burgraviate of Nuremberg in 1200 from his father, thereby founding the Swabian branch of the House of Hohenzollerns. The Swabian line remained Catholic.
- The younger brother, Conrad III, received the burgraviate of Nuremberg from his older brother Frederick IV in 1218, thereby founding the Franconian branch of the House of Hohenzollern. The Franconian line later converted to Protestantism.
The cadet Franconian branch of the House of Hohenzollern was founded by Conrad III, Burgrave of Nuremberg (1186-1261).
Beginning in the 16th century, this branch of the family became Protestant and decided on expansion through marriage and the purchase of surrounding lands.
These acquisitions eventually transformed the Hohenzollerns from a minor German princely family into one of the most important in Europe.
Burgraves of Nuremberg (1192–1427)
- 1192–1200/1204: Frederick I (also count of Zollern as Frederick III)
- 1204–1218: Frederick II (son of, also count of Zollern as Frederick IV)
- 1218–1261/1262: Conrad I/III (brother of, also count of Zollern)
- 1262–1297: Frederick III (son of)
- 1297–1300: John I (son of)
- 1300–1332: Frederick IV (brother of)
- 1332–1357: John II (son of)
- 1357–1398: Frederick V (son of)
At Frederick V's death on 21 January 1398, his lands were partitioned between his two sons:
- 1398–1420: John III/I (son of, also Margrave of Brandenburg-Kulmbach)
- 1420–1427: Frederick VI/I/I, (brother of, also Elector of Brandenburg and Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach)
After John III/I's death on 11 June 1420, the two principalities were briefly reunited under Frederick VI/I/I. From 1412 Frederick VI became Margrave of Brandenburg as Frederick I and Elector of Brandenburg as Frederick I. From 1420, he became Margrave of Brandenburg-Kulmbach. Upon his death on 21 September 1440, his territories were divided between his sons:
- John II, Margrave of Brandenburg-Kulmbach
- Frederick II, Elector of Brandenburg
- Albert III, Elector of Brandenburg and Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach
From 1427 onwards the title of Burgrave of Nuremberg was absorbed into the titles of Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach and Margrave of Brandenburg-Kulmbach.
Nuremberg Castle (The Emperor's castle, left, and the Burgrave's castle, right)
Cadolzburg Castle (from 1260 seat of the Burgraves)
Margraves of Brandenburg-Ansbach (1398–1791)
- 1398: Frederick I (also Margrave of Brandenburg-Kulmbach)
- 1440: Albert I/I/III Achilles (son of, also Margrave of Brandenburg-Kulmbach and Elector of Brandenburg)
- 1486: Frederick II/II (son of, also Margrave of Brandenburg-Kulmbach)
- 1515: George I/I the Pious (son of, also Duke of Brandenburg-Jägerndorf)
- 1543: George Frederick I/I/I/I (son of, also Margrave of Brandenburg-Kulmbach, Duke of Brandenburg-Jägerndorf and Regent of Prussia)
- 1603: Joachim Ernst
- 1625: Frederick III
- 1634: Albert II
- 1667: John Frederick
- 1686: Christian I Albrecht
- 1692: George Frederick II/II (later Margrave of Brandenburg-Kulmbach)
- 1703: William Frederick (before 1686–1723)
- 1723: Charles William (1712–1757)
- 1757: Christian II Frederick (1757–1791) (son of, also Margrave of Brandenburg-Kulmbach)
On 2 December 1791, Christian II Frederick sold the sovereignty of his principalities to king Frederick William II of Prussia.
Margraves of Brandenburg-Kulmbach (1398–1604), later Brandenburg-Bayreuth (1604–1791)
- 1397: John I
- 1420: Frederick I (also Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach)
- 1440: John II
- 1457: Albert I/I/III Achilles (also Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach and Elector of Brandenburg)
- 1486: Siegmund
- 1495: Frederick II/II (also Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach)
- 1515: Casimir
- 1527: Albert II Alcibiades
- 1553: George Frederick I/I/I/I (also Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach, Duke of Brandenburg-Jägerndorf and Regent of Prussia)
- 1603: Christian I
- 1655: Christian II Ernst
- 1712: George I William
- 1726: George Frederick II/II (previously Margrave of Kulmbach)
- 1735: Frederick IV
- 1763: Frederick V Christian
- 1769: Christian II Frederick (until 1791, also Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach)
On 2 December 1791, Christian II Frederick sold the sovereignty of his principalities to king Frederick William II of Prussia.
From 1701 the title of Elector of Brandenburg was attached to the title of King in and of Prussia.
Dukes of Jägerndorf (1523–1622)
- 1541–1543 : George I the Pious (also Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach)
- 1543–1603 : George Frederick I (also Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach, Margrave of Brandenburg-Kulmbach and Regent of Prussia)
- 1603–1606 : Joachim I (also Regent of Prussia and Elector of Brandenburg)
- 1606–1621 : Johann Georg of Hohenzollern
The duchy of Jägerndorf was confiscated by Ferdinand III of the Holy Roman Empire in 1622.
Margraves of Brandenburg (1415–1819)
- 1415-1440 Frederick I
- 1471-1486 Albrecht III Achilles
- 1486-1499 John Cicero
- 1499-1535 Joachim I Nestor
- 1535-1571 Joachim II Hector
- 1571-1598 John George
- 1598-1608 Joachim III Frederick
- 1608-1819 John Sigismund
Margraves of Brandenburg-Küstrin (1535–1571)
- 1535–1571: John the Wise, Margrave of Brandenburg-Küstrin (son of Joachim I Nestor, Elector of Brandenburg)
He died without issue. The Margraviate of Brandenburg-Küstrin was absorbed in 1571 into the Margraviate and Electorate of Brandenburg.
Margraves of Brandenburg-Schwedt (1688–1788)
From 1688 onwards the Margraves of Brandenburg-Schwedt were a side branch of the House of Hohenzollern. Though recognised as a branch of the main dynasty the Margraviate of Brandenburg-Schwedt never constituted a principality with allodial rights of its own.
- 1688–1711 : Philip William, Prince in Prussia, Margrave of Brandenburg-Schwedt (son of Frederick William, Elector of Brandenburg)
- 1731–1771 : Frederick William, Prince in Prussia, Margrave of Brandenburg-Schwedt (son of)
- 1771–1788 : Frederick Henry, Prince in Prussia, Margrave of Brandenburg Schwedt (brother of)
In 1788 the title was incorporated into the Kingdom of Prussia.
Dukes of Prussia (1525–1701)
- 1525–1568: Albert I
- 1568–1618: Albert II Frederick co-inheritor (son of)
- 1568–1571: Joachim I/II Hector co-inheritor (also Elector of Brandenburg)
- 1578–1603: George Frederick I/I/I/I (Regent, also Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach, Margrave of Brandenburg-Kulmbach and Duke of Brandenburg-Jägerndorf)
- 1603–1608: Joachim I/I/III Frederick (Regent, also Duke of Brandenburg-Jägerndorf and Elector of Brandenburg)
- 1608–1618: John I/III Sigismund (Regent, also Elector of Brandenburg)
- 1618–1619: John I/III Sigismund (Regent, also Elector of Brandenburg)
- 1619–1640: George William I/I (son of, also Elector of Brandenburg)
- 1640–1688: Frederick I/III William the Great Elector (son of, also Elector of Brandenburg)
- 1688–1701: Frederick II/IV/I (also Elector of Brandenburg and King in Prussia)
From 1701 the title of Duke of Prussia was attached to the title of King in and of Prussia.
Kings in Prussia (1701–1772)
In 1701 the title of King in Prussia was granted, without the Duchy of Prussia being elevated to a Kingdom within the Holy Roman Empire. From 1701 onwards the titles of Duke of Prussia and Elector of Brandenburg were always attached to the title of King in Prussia.
- 1701–1713: Frederick I/II/IV (also Duke of Prussia and Elector of Brandenburg)
- 1713–1740: Frederick William I (son of)
- 1740–1786: Frederick II (son of, later also King of Prussia)
In 1772 the Duchy of Prussia was elevated to a kingdom.
Kings of Prussia (1772–1918)
In 1772 the title of King of Prussia was granted with the establishment of the Kingdom of Prussia. From 1772 onwards the titles of Duke of Prussia and Elector of Brandenburg were always attached to the title of King of Prussia.
- Frederick II (1740–1786) (son of, before King in Prussia)
- Frederick William II (1786–1797) (nephew of)
- Frederick William III (1797–1840) (son of)
- Frederick William IV (1840–1861) (son of)
- William I (1861–1888) (brother of)
- Frederick III (1888) (son of)
- William II (1888–1918) (son of)
In 1871 the Kingdom of Prussia was a constituting member of the German Empire.
German Emperors (1871–1918)
In 1871 the German Empire was proclaimed. With the accession of Wilhelm I to the newly established imperial German throne, the titles of King of Prussia, Duke of Prussia and Elector of Brandenburg were always attached to the title of German Emperor.
- 1871–1888: William I (also King of Prussia)
- 1888: Frederick III (son of, also King of Prussia)
- 1888–1918: William II (son of, also King of Prussia)
In 1918 the German empire was abolished and replaced by the Weimar Republic.
Line of succession (1918 to present)
After the outbreak of the German Revolution in 1918, both Emperor Wilhelm II and the Crown Prince Wilhelm signed the document of abdication, with effect only for their own person. Despite the abolition of the German monarchy in 1918, the House of Hohenzollern never relinquished their claims to the thrones of Prussia and the German Empire. These claims are linked by the Constitution of the second German Empire: according to this, whoever was King of Prussia was also German Emperor. However, these claims are not recognised by the Federal Republic of Germany and the German Constitution of 1949 guarantees democracy and republicanism.
In June 1926, a referendum on expropriating the formerly ruling princes of Germany without compensation failed and as a consequence, the financial situation of the Hohenzollern family improved considerably. A settlement between the state and the family made Cecilienhof property of the state but granted a right of residence to Crown Prince Wilhelm and his wife Cecilie. The family also kept the ownership of Monbijou Palace in Berlin, Oels Castle in Silesia, Rheinsberg Palace, Schwedt Palace and other property until 1945. The communist government of the Soviet occupation zone depropriated all landowners and industrialists, by which the House of Hohenzollern lost almost all of its fortune, leaving them only with a few company shares and Hohenzollern Castle in West Germany. The Polish government depropriated the Silesian property and the Dutch government seized Huis Doorn, the Emperor's exile seat. After the German reunification however, the family was legally able to claim their movable property back, namely art collections and parts of the interior of their former palaces. Negotiations on a return or compensation for these assets are not yet finished.
|William II||1918–1941||Exiled in the Netherlands until his death|
|Crown Prince William||1941–1951|
|Prince Louis Ferdinand||1951–1994|
|Prince Georg Friedrich||since 1994|
|Prince Carl Friedrich||heir presumptive|
The head of the house is the titular King of Prussia and German Emperor. He also bears a historical claim to the title of prince of Orange. Members of this line style themselves princes of Prussia.
Swabian Senior Branch
Ruling the minor German principalities of Hechingen, Sigmaringen and Haigerloch, this branch of the family decided to remain Roman Catholic and from 1567 onwards split into the Hohenzollern-Hechingen, Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen and Hohenzollern-Haigerloch branches. The Romanian branch of this family became Orthodox, starting from Ferdinand's I children. When the last count of Hohenzollern, Charles I of Hohenzollern (1512–1579) died, the territory was to be divided up between his three sons:
- Eitel Frederick IV of Hohenzollern-Hechingen (1545–1605)
- Charles II of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen (1547–1606)
- Christopher of Hohenzollern-Haigerloch (1552–1592)
They never expanded from these three Swabian principalities, which was one of the reasons they became relatively unimportant in German history for much of their existence. However, they kept royal lineage and married members of the great royal European houses.
In 1767 the principality of Hohenzollern-Haigerloch was incorporated into the other two principalities. In 1850, the princes of both Hohenzollern-Hechingen and Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen abdicated their thrones, and their principalities were incorporated as the Prussian province of Hohenzollern.
The last ruling Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen, Karl Anton, would later serve as Minister-President of Prussia between 1858 and 1862.
However, a member of the Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen family, Charles Eitel, second son of prince Karl Anton, was chosen to become prince of Romania as Charles I in 1866. In 1881 Charles I became the first king of the Romanians.
Charles' older brother, Leopold, was offered the Spanish throne after a revolt removed queen Isabella II in 1870. Although encouraged by Bismarck to accept it, Leopold backed down once France's Emperor, Napoleon III, stated his objection. Despite this, France still declared war, beginning the Franco-Prussian war.
Charles I had only a daughter who died very young, so Leopold's younger son Ferdinand I would succeed his uncle as king of the Romanians in 1914, and his descendants continued to rule in Romania until the end of the monarchy in 1947.
In modern times this branch has been represented only by the last king, Michael I of Romania, and his daughters. The descendants of Leopold's oldest son William continue to use the titles of prince or princess of Hohenzollern.
King Michael renounced his connection in 2011.
Counts of Hohenzollern (1204–1575)
- 1204–1251/1255: Frederick IV, also Burgrave of Nuremberg as Frederick II until 1218
- 1251/1255–1289: Frederick V
- 1289–1298: Frederick VI
- 1298–1309: Frederick VII
- 1309–1333: Frederick VIII
- 1333–1377: Frederick IX
- 1377–1401: Frederick XI
- 1401–1426: Frederick XII
- 1426–1439: Eitel Frederick I
- 1439–1488: Jobst Nicholas I
- 1488–1512: Eitel Frederick II
- 1512–1525: Eitel Frederick III
- 1525–1575: Charles I
Counts of Hohenzollern-Haigerloch (1567–1630 and 1681–1767)
The County of Hohenzollern-Haigerloch was established in 1567 without allodial rights
- 1575–1601 : Christopher of Hohenzollern-Haigerloch
- 1601–1623 : John Christopher, Count of Hohenzollern-Haigerloch
- 1601–1630 : Charles, Count of Hohenzollern-Haigerloch
Between 1630 and 1681 the county was temporarily integrated into the principality of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen.
- 1681–1702: Francis Anthony, Count of Hohenzollern-Haigerloch
- 1702–1750: Ferdinand Leopold, Count of Hohenzollern-Haigerloch
- 1750–1767: Francis Christopher Anton of Hohenzollern-Haigerloch
After the death of Francis Christopher Anton in 1767, the county of Hohenzollern-Haigenloch was definitively absorbed into the principality of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen.
Counts, later Princes of Hohenzollern-Hechingen (1576–1623–1850)
- Eitel Frederick IV (1576–1605)
- John George (1605–1623) (raised to Prince in 1623)
- Eitel Frederick V (1623–1661) (also count of Hohenzollern-Hechingen)
- Philip Christopher Frederick (1661–1671)
- Frederick William (1671–1735)
- Frederick Louis (1735–1750)
- Josef Friedrich Wilhelm (1750–1798)
- Hermann (1798–1810)
- Friedrich (1810–1838)
- Konstantin (1838–1850)
In 1850 the principality was sold to the Franconian branch of the family and incorporated into the Kingdom of Prussia. The branch became extinct in dynastic line with Konstantin's death in 1869.
Counts, later Princes of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen (1576–1623–1849)
- Karl II (1576–1606)
- John (1606–1638) (elevated to Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen in 1623)
- Meinrad I (1638–1681)
- Maximilian I (1681–1689)
- Meinrad I (1689–1715)
- Joseph Frederick Ernest (1715–1769)
- Charles Frederick (1769–1785)
- Anton Aloys (1785–1831)
- Karl III (1831–1848)
- Karl Anton (1848–1849)
In 1850 the principality was sold to the Franconian branch of the family and incorporated into the kingdom of Prussia. Nevertheless, the family continued to use the princely title of Fürsten von Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen until 1869 and still use the title of Fürsten von Hohenzollern.
House of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen after 1849
The princely House of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen never relinquished their claims to the princely throne of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen or the royal throne of Romania. Because the last reigning king of the Romanians, Michael I, has no male issue, upon his death the claim will devolve to the head of the House of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen (or to the king's female line descendants, if one follows the amended Romanian house laws).
- 1849–1885: Karl Anton, Prince of Hohenzollern
- 1885–1905: Leopold, Prince of Hohenzollern
- 1905–1927: Wilhelm, Prince of Hohenzollern
- 1927–1965: Friedrich, Prince of Hohenzollern
- 1965–2010 : Friedrich Wilhelm, Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen
- 2010 - current : Karl Friedrich, Prince of Hohenzollern
- heir apparent: Alexander, Hereditary Prince of Hohenzollern
The head of the family is styled His Serene Highness The Prince of Hohenzollern.
Kings of the Romanians
The Principality of Romania was established in 1862, after the Ottoman vassal states of Wallachia and Moldavia had been united in 1859 under Alexandru Ioan Cuza as Prince of Romania in a personal union.
- 1866–1914: Charles I (titled as Prince until 1881)
- 1914–1927: Ferdinand
- 1927–1930: Michael
- 1930–1940: Charles II
- 1940–1947: Michael (again)
In 1947 the Kingdom of Romania was abolished and replaced with the People's Republic of Romania.
Succession (1947 until today)
Michael has retained his claim on the defunct Romanian throne. At present, the claim is not recognised by Romania, a republic. At 10 May 2011, Michael severed all of the dynastic and historical ties between the House of Romania and the House of Hohenzollern.
Coat of arms of the Hohenzollerns, Brandenburg, Prussia, and the German Empire
On January 27, 1701, King Frederick I changed his arms as prince-elector of Brandenburg. The older arms of the electors of Brandenburg depicted a red eagle on a white background. Henceforth, the Prussian eagle, now royally crowned and with 'FR' (Fridericus Rex, "King Frederick") on its breast, was placed in an escutcheon on the shield with 25 quarters instead of the electoral scepter. All the helmets made way for one royal crown.
The wild men—figures from Germanic and Celtic mythology representing the 'Lord of the Beasts' or 'Green Man'— that held the arms of Prussia are probably taken from the arms of Pomerania or Denmark. They are also to be found as supporters of the arms of Braunschweig, Königsberg, and the Dutch towns of Anloo, Beilen, Bergen op Zoom, Groede, Havelte, 's-Hertogenbosch, Oosterhesselen, Sleen, Sneek, Vries and Zuidwolde. A wild man and a wild woman have held the shield of the principality of Schwarzburg in Thuringia and the city of Antwerp since the beginning of the 16th century. Two wild men and a wild woman have been included in the seal of Bergen op Zoom since 1365.
A decree from 11 February 1701 placed a crown on the Prussian escutcheon. The king ordained that the whole should be placed on a royal pavilion after the French and Danish examples.
When William III, Prince of Orange and King of England, died on March 19, 1702, the king ordered the arms of the principality placed on his shield. This was to support his claim as heir general, although the Frisian branch of the House of Orange-Nassau claimed it as well.
In 1708 Frederick announced that he would place the quarters of the dukes of Mecklenburg in the Prussian arms to stress his rights to Mecklenburg-Schwerin and Mecklenburg-Strelitz if their ducal lines were to die out. Although Mecklenburg-Strelitz protested, Emperor Joseph I gave permission to Frederick in October 1712. This design was twice officially altered but was not fundamentally changed since.
The electoral scepter had its own shield under the electoral cap. Around the shield, with 36 quarters (including Veere-Vlissingen and Breda), appeared the Order of the Black Eagle with a crowned helmet resting on top. The wild men held banners of Prussia and Brandenburg and behind the pavilion rose a Prussian banner after the example of the French Oriflamme. The motto Gott mit uns ("God with us") appeared on the pedestal.
Already during the reign of Frederick I there is a notable difference between the 'Gothic' representation of the Prussian eagle in the arms and the more naturally depicted and often flying eagle on most coins and military standards.
Frederick William I followed his father on the throne on February 25, 1713. According to Ströhl he gave the eagle a scepter and orb. He made an arrangement with the Frisian Nassaus over the title to the Principality of Orange, although it was occupied by France. Besides the arms of Orange, he officially added Veere and Vlissingen on July 29, 1732. The king also added East Frisia to his arms, claiming it in case the prince would die without heir. A fourth escutcheon appeared among the 36 quarters.
Frederick II became king on May 31, 1740. He laid claim to the duchy of Silesia after the death of Emperor Charles VI and declared war on Charles' daughter and heir, Maria Theresa of Austria, thereby starting the Silesian Wars.
Frederick II was followed by his nephew, Frederick William II, on August 17, 1786. Frederick William II inherited the Franconian cadet branches (Ansbach and Bayreuth) of the House of Hohenzollern in 1791. For reasons of economy, however, the official seals were unchanged.
Frederick William III took the throne on November 16, 1797 and changed the arms on July 3, 1804. The reorganisation of Germany by Napoleon I of France made alterations necessary. A new escutcheon was created for Silesia and the shield held 42 quarters. The Order of the Red Eagle of the Franconian line was also added around the shield.
After the fall of Napoleon, Prussia gained extensive territories on the Rhine and in Saxony. New arms were therefore decreed on January 9, 1817. The number of quarters rose to 48, including the horse of Westphalia and Lower Saxony. The number of escutcheons was reduced to four: the black eagle of Prussia, the red eagle of Brandenburg instead of the scepter, the burgravate of Nuremberg (though ceded to Bavaria), and Hohenzollern proper.
The so-called 'middle arms' were then issued: a shield with the same four escutcheons and ten quarters for Silesia, Rhineland, Posen, Saxony, Pomerania, Magdeburg, Jülich-Cleves-Berg, and Westphalia. This was encircled by the Order of the Black Eagle and held by two wild men with clubs.
The small arms already in use on coins of the 1790s were legitimized as well.
Frederick William IV was followed by his brother William I on January 2, 1861. He changed the arms on 11 January 1864 by combining the escutcheons of Nuremberg and Hohenzollern. After the Second Schleswig War of 1864 and the Austro-Prussian War of 1866, Prussia annexed Schleswig, Holstein, Hanover, Hesse-Kassel (or Hesse-Cassel), and Nassau. King William I of Prussia became William I, German Emperor on 18 January 1871 during the unification of Germany. The Kingdom of Prussia became the predominant state in the newly created German Empire.
William decreed new arms on August 16, 1873. The number of quarters was again 48 with three escutcheons. Added were the collars of the Order of the House of Hohenzollern and the Order of the Prussian Crown. The motto was placed on the dome of the pavilion.
The middle arms of 1873 show more clearly the changes by the additions of Schleswig-Holstein, Hanover, and Hesse-Kassel and the removals of Magdeburg and Cleves-Jülich-Berg.
The Reichsadler had already been introduced at the Proclamation of Versailles, although the first version had been only a provisional one. The design of the eagle had been altered at least twice during the German Empire (1871–1918). It shows the imperial eagle, a realistic black eagle, with the crown of the Holy Roman Empire. The eagle has a red head and claws, with open wings and feathers, but only one head, looking to the right. This is in contrast to its predecessor, the eagle of the German Confederation, because it symoblised that important parts of the old empire, Austria and Bohemia, were not part of this new empire. Its legal basis was an imperial rescript:
To the Reich Chancellor Prince of Bismarck. Following your report of June 27 of this year I authorize: 1. that public authorities and public servants, appointed by the Emperor according the requirements of the constitution and the laws of the German Empire, are to be called imperial; 2. that the black, one-headed, rightward-looking eagle with red beak, tongue and claws, without scepter and orb, on the breast shield the Prussian eagle, overlaid with the shield of the House of Hohenzollern, over the same the crown in the form of the crown of Charlemagne, but with two crossing bows, may be brought into use; 3. that the Imperial standard [Script continues]—Kaiser Wilhelm, Rescript of August third, 1871, concerning the names of the public authorities and public servants of the German Empire, as well as the declaration of the Imperial coat of arms and the Imperial standard
|The coats of arms of the German Empire (1871–1918).|
|The greater coat of arms of the German Emperor: Imperial Coat of arms of His Majesty.||The coat of arms of the German Emperor with a crest: Imperial Coat of arms of His Majesty.||Provisional arms of the German Empire at the Proclamation of Versailles.
27 April 1871–3 August 1871
|The coat of arms of the German Empire, 1871–1889.
3 August 1871 – 1888
|The coat of arms of the German Empire, 1889–1918.
6 December 1888 – 1918
Buildings of the Hohenzollern
- Kings of Germany family tree. The Hohenzollerns were the 15th dynasty to rule Germany and were related by marriage to all the others.
- Coat of arms of Prussia
- Coat of arms of Germany
- House Order of Hohenzollern
- Heil dir im Siegerkranz
- Order of the Black Eagle and SUUM CUIQUE
- Order of the Red Eagle and SINCERE ET CONSTANTE
- Order of the Crown (Prussia) and GOTT MIT UNS
- Iron Cross
- "A Royal Student Stein". Steincollectors.org. Retrieved 2010-08-28.
- "Kingdom of Romania". Almanach de Saxe Gotha. Retrieved 2013-10-03.
- Schultze, Johannes; Seigel, Rudolf (1972). "Hohenzollern, Dynastengeschlecht". Neue deutsche Biographie, Bd.: 9, Hess - Hüttig, Berlin. Bayerische Staatsbibliothek. Retrieved January 30, 2013.
- Schmid, Ludwig (1862). "Geschichte der Grafen von Zollern-Hohenberg". Geschichte der Grafen von Zollern-Hohenberg. Anhang. Historisch-topographische Zusammenstellung der Grafschaft und Besitzungen des Hauses Zollern-Hohenberg. Google Book: Gebrüder Scheitlin. Retrieved February 1, 2013.
- Heraldry of the Royal Families of Europe, Jiří Louda & Michael Maclagan, 1981, pp. 178-179.
- "King Michael I broke ties with historical and dynastic House of Hohenzollern" in Adevarul - News Bucharest, 10 May 2011
- "Romania's former King Michael ends ties with German Hohenzollern dynasty". The Canadian Press. Retrieved 2011-05-11.
- K.L. Sierksma, De gemeentewapens van Nederland, Het Spectrum, Utrecht/Antwerp, 1960
- Hubert de Vries, Wapens van de Nederlanden, Uitg. Jan Mets, Amsterdam, 1995
- W.A. van Ham, Wapens en vlaggen van Noord-Brabant, Walburg Pers, Zutphen, 1986
- Gerhard Schön, Deutscher Münzkatalog. 18. Jahrhundert, Battenberg Verlag, Munich, 1984
- Terence Wise, Military Flags of the World, Blandford Press, Poole, Dorset, 1977
- Siebmacher, Grosses Wappenbuch, Band 1, 1. Abteilung, 1. Teil, Nuremberg 1856 and 4.Teil, Nuremberg 1921
- von Hohenzollern, Wilhelm (The German Emperor and King of Prussia) (1919-11-11). Allerhöchster Erlass vom 3. August 1871, betreffend die Bezeichnung der Behörden und Beamten des Deutschen Reichs, sowie die Feststellung des Kaiserlichen Wappens und der Kaiserlichen Standarte (Rescript of August 3rd, 1871, concerning the names of the public authorities and public servants of the German Empire, as well as the declaration of the Imperial coat of arms and the Imperial standard). Berlin. pp. Reichsgesetzblatt 1871. Nr. 681 Pg. 318 and 458.
- Official site of the imperial House of Germany and royal House of Prussia
- Official site of the princely House of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen
- Official site of the royal house of Romania
- Genealogy of the Hohenzollern
- Marek, Miroslav. "Genealogy of the Hohenzollerns from Genealogy.eu". Genealogy.EU.[self-published source][better source needed]
— Royal house —
House of Hohenzollern
Founding year: 12th century
|German unification||Ruling House of Germany
18 January 1871 – 9 November 1918
|Prussia established||Ruling House of Prussia
1525 – 9 November 1918
|Romanian unification||Ruling House of Romania
26 March 1881 – 30 December 1947