William IV, Prince of Orange

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William IV
Guillaume IV d'Orange-Nassau.jpg
Prince of Orange
Spouse Anne of Great Britain
House House of Orange
Father John William Friso, Prince of Orange
Mother Landgravine Marie Louise of Hesse-Kassel
Born 1 September 1711
Leeuwarden
Died 22 October 1751(1751-10-22) (aged 40)
Huis ten Bosch

William IV, Prince of Orange-Nassau (1 September 1711 – 22 October 1751), born Willem Karel Hendrik Friso, was the first hereditary stadtholder of the Netherlands.

Early life[edit]

William was born in Leeuwarden, Netherlands, the son of John William Friso, Prince of Orange, head of the Frisian branch of the House of Orange-Nassau, and of his wife Landgravine Marie Louise of Hesse-Kassel (or Hesse-Cassel). He was born six weeks after the death of his father.

William succeeded his father as Stadtholder of Friesland and also, under the regency of his mother until 1731, as Stadtholder of Groningen. In 1722 he was elected Stadtholder of Guelders.

Marriage and children[edit]

In 1720 William was named the 549th Knight of the Order of the Garter. On 25 March 1734 he married at St. James' Palace Anne, Princess Royal, eldest daughter of King George II of Great Britain and Caroline of Ansbach. William and Anne had five children:

Later life[edit]

In 1739 William inherited the estates formerly owned by the Nassau-Dillenburg branch of his family, and in 1743 he inherited those formerly owned by the Nassau-Siegen branch of his family.

Portrait of William, 1751

In April 1747 the French army entered Flanders. In an effort to quell internal strife amongst the various factions, the States General of the Netherlands appointed William to the hereditary position of General Stadtholder of all seven of the United Provinces. William and his family moved from Leeuwarden to The Hague. William first met Duke Louis Ernest of Brunswick-Lüneburg in 1747, and 2 years later appointed him field marshal of the Dutch States Army, which later led to his being one of the regents to William's heir. On 4 May 1747 he was confirmed as Hereditary Stattholder of the United Provinces (Netherlands).

William IV was considered an attractive, educated and accomplished prince in his prime. Although he had little experience in state affairs, William was at first popular with the people. He stopped the practice of indirect taxation by which independent contractors managed to make large sums for themselves. Nevertheless, he was also a Director-General of the Dutch East India Company, and his alliance with the business class deepened while the disparity between rich and poor grew.

William served as General Stadtholder of all the Netherlands until his death in 1751 at The Hague.

The city of Orangeburg, SC is named after him.

Ancestry[edit]

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
8. William Frederick, Count of Nassau-Dietz
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
4. Henry Casimir II, Count of Nassau-Dietz
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
9. Princess Albertine Agnes of Nassau
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
2. John William Friso, Prince of Orange
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
10. John George II, Prince of Anhalt-Dessau
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
5. Princess Henriëtte Amalia of Anhalt-Dessau
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
11. Princess Henriette Catherine of Nassau
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
1. William IV, Prince of Orange
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
12. William VI, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
6. Charles I, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
13. Margravine Hedwig Sophia of Brandenburg
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
3. Landgravine Marie Louise of Hesse-Kassel
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
14. Jacob, Duke of Courland
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
7. Princess Maria Amalia of Courland
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
15. Margravine Louise Charlotte of Brandenburg
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

External links[edit]

William IV, Prince of Orange
Cadet branch of the House of Nassau
Born: 1 September 1711 Died: 22 October 1751
Dutch nobility
Preceded by
John William Friso
Prince of Orange
1711–1751
Vacant
Title next held by
William V
Regnal titles
Preceded by
John William Friso
Prince of Orange-Nassau
Baron of Breda

1711–1751
Succeeded by
William V
Preceded by
Francis Alexander
Prince of Nassau-Hadamar
1739–1751
Preceded by
Christian
Prince of Nassau-Dillenburg
1739–1751
Preceded by
Frederick William II
Prince of Nassau-Siegen
1743–1751
Political offices
Preceded by
John William Friso
Stadtholder of
Friesland and Groningen

1711–1747
Titles obsolete
merger of all stadtholderships
Vacant
Title last held by
William III
Stadtholder of Guelders
1722–1747
Stadtholder of Holland, Zeeland,
Utrecht, and Overijssel

1747
New title General Stadtholder
of the United Provinces

1747–1751
Succeeded by
William V