Joseph Friedrich Ernst, Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen

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Joseph Friedrich Ernst, Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen
Joseph, Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen
Spouse(s) Marie Franziska of Oettingen-Spielberg
Judith of Closen-Arnstorf
Maria Theresa of Waldburg-Trauchburg
Noble family House of Hohenzollern
Father Meinrad II, Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen
Mother Johanna Katharina of Montfort
Born (1702-05-24)24 May 1702
Died 8 December 1769(1769-12-08) (aged 67)
Haag Castle, Haigerloch

Prince Joseph Ernst Friedrich Karl Anton Meinrad of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen (24 May 1702 in Sigmaringen – 8 December 1769 at Haag Castle, Haigerloch), was the fifth Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen. He ruled from 1715 to 1769.


Joseph was the eldest son of Prince Meinrad II of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen (1673–1715) from his marriage to Johanna Katharina (1678–1759), daughter of Count Johann Anton I of Montfort-Tettnang.

He was initially raised by his mother. However, due to the turmoil of the War of the Spanish Succession, the family moved to his father's residence in Vienna. Joseph continued to be educated in Vienna after his parents returned to Sigmaringen in 1714. After his father's death in 1715, he succeeded as Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen. However, as he was still a minor, he stood under his mother's regency until 1720. Shortly before 1720, Joseph joined the Austrian army, where he held the rank of General of the Cavalry and later Fieldmarshal Lieutenant of the imperial Swabian Circle.

Joseph managed to befriend the Electorate of Bavaria and after the election, Emperor Charles VII appointed him as imperial Geheimrat.

Joseph was an avid hunter and in 1727, he created the game park Josefslust in Sigmaringen. In 1736, he modernized and remodeled Sigmaringen Castle. He also embellished the local Knight's Hall and added portraits of all his ancestors. In Simaringen, he built the St Johann's Church, the St. Joseph Chapel, and the Jagdschloss in Josefslust Park. In Haigerloch, which he preferred as a residence over Sigmaringen, he built the St Anna's Church.

He was known as a patron of the arts. He commissioned works by the artist Johann Michael Feuchtmayer, Johann Georg Weckenmann and Andreas Meinrad von Ow. He supported the canonization of the local saint Fidelis of Sigmaringen. He also supported the school and church life.

Marriages and issue[edit]

Joseph married his first wife on 20 May 1722 in Oettingen. She was Marie Franziska (1703–1737), daughter of Prince Franz Albrecht of Oettingen-Spielberg, who brought him a considerable fortune. With her he had the following children:

married in 1749 to Countess Johanna of Hohenzollern-'s-Heerenberg (1727–1787)
  • Maria Johanna (1726–1793), a nun in Buchau
  • Maria Amalia (1729–1730)
  • Meinrad (1732–1733)
  • Anna Maria (1736–1736)
  • Unnamed son (1737–1737)

Joseph's second marriage on 5 July 1738 to Judith (1718–1743), daughter of Count Franz Anton of Closen, Baron of Arnstorf, remained childless.

His third marriage joined Joseph on 22 October 1743 with Maria Theresa (1696–1761), daughter of Count Franz Christoph of Waldburg at Trauchburg, with whom he had the following children:

  • Karl Albrecht (1741–1741)
  • Maria Amalia (1742–1742)
  • Maria Theresa (1743–1743)


  • Günter Schmitt: Sigmaringen, in: Günter Schmitt: Burgenführer Schwäbische Alb, vol. 3: Donautal. Wandern und entdecken zwischen Sigmaringen und Tuttlingen, Biberacher Verlagsdruckerei, Biberach, 1990, ISBN 3-924489-50-5, p. 41–62
  • Gustav Schilling: Geschichte des Hauses Hohenzollern in genealogisch fortlaufenden Biographien aller seiner Regenten von den ältesten bis auf die neuesten Zeiten, nach Urkunden und andern authentischen Quellen, Fleischer, Leipzig 1843, p. 283 ff
This article incorporates information from the equivalent article on the German Wikipedia.
Joseph Friedrich Ernst, Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen
Born: 24 May 1702 Died: 8 December 1769
Preceded by
Meinrad II
Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen
Succeeded by
Karl Friedrich
Preceded by
Franz Christoph Anton
Count of Hohenzollern-Haigerloch