Roman Herzog

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Roman Herzog
Roman Herzog.jpg
Roman Herzog in 2006
President of Germany
In office
1 July 1994 – 30 June 1999
Chancellor Helmut Kohl
Gerhard Schröder
Preceded by Richard von Weizsäcker
Succeeded by Johannes Rau
President of the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany
In office
16 November 1987 – 30 June 1994
Preceded by Wolfgang Zeidler
Succeeded by Jutta Limbach
Personal details
Born (1934-04-05) 5 April 1934 (age 80)
Landshut, Bavaria, Germany
Nationality German
Political party Christian Democratic Union
Spouse(s) Christiane Krauß (marr. 1959 to 2000)
Alexandra Freifrau von Berlichingen
Children 2
Alma mater Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich
Profession Lawyer
Religion Lutheran

Roman Herzog (born 5 April 1934) is a German politician as a member of the Christian Democratic Union, (CDU) and served as President of Germany from 1994 to 1999. He was the first President of the Federal Republic of Germany to be elected to office after the reunification of Germany that took place in 1990. Prior to his election to the presidency of Germany he served as a judge of the Federal Constitutional Court, and he was the President of the Constitutional Court from 1987 until his election as President of Germany.

Life and career[edit]

Roman Herzog was born in Landshut, Bavaria, Germany, in 1934 to a Protestant family.

He studied law in Munich. In 1958, he completed his doctoral studies and worked as an assistant at the University of Munich until 1964, where he also passed his second juristic state exam. For his paper Die Wesensmerkmale der Staatsorganisation in rechtlicher und entwicklungsgeschichtlicher Sicht ("Characteristics of State Organization from a Juristic and Developmental-Historical Viewpoint"), in 1964 he was awarded the title of professor, a title of academic distinction in Germany, and taught at the University of Munich until 1966. From 1966 he taught constitutional law and political science as a full professor at the Free University of Berlin (FUB). In 1969, he accepted a chair of public law at the German University of Administrative Sciences and served as university president from 1971 to 1972.

In 1973 his political career began as a representative of the state (Land) of Rhineland-Palatinate with the Federal government in Bonn. He was minister for culture and sports in the Baden-Württemberg State Government from 1978. In 1980 he was elected to the State Parliament (Landtag) and took over the state Ministry of the Interior.

Roman Herzog has also always been active in the Evangelical Church in Germany. Until 1980, he was head of the Chamber for Public Responsibility of this church, and, since 1982, he has been a member of the synod.

In 1983 he became a judge at the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany (Bundesverfassungsgericht) in Karlsruhe. From 1987 until 1994, he also served as the president of this Court. During his term as President of the Constitutional Court, Herzog was elected President of Germany by the Federal Assembly (Bundesversammlung) on 23 May 1994. Herzog took office as Federal President on 1 July 1994. He retained this position until 30 June 1999 and did not seek reelection. Upon the end of his five-year term as Head of State, Herzog was succeeded by Johannes Rau.

In 1994, as President of Germany, Herzog participated in the commemorations of the 50th anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising during the Nazi occupation of Poland. In a widely commended speech, he paid tribute to the Polish fighters and people and asked Poles for "forgiveness for what has been done to you by the Germans".[1]

Between December 1999 and October 2000, Herzog was chair of the European Convention which drafted the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union.

His wife, Christiane Herzog, died on 19 June 2000. He later married Alexandra Freifrau von Berlichingen.


  1. ^ Borodziej, Włodzimierz; Harshav, Barbara (2006), The Warsaw Uprising of 1944, Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, p. 147 .

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Richard von Weizsäcker
President of Germany
Succeeded by
Johannes Rau