Count Palatine William of Gelnhausen

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Count Palatine William of Gelnhausen
Born(1701-01-04)4 January 1701
Died25 December 1760(1760-12-25) (aged 59)
The Hague
Noble familyHouse of Wittelsbach
FatherJohn Charles, Count Palatine of Gelnhausen
MotherEsther Maria of Witzleben-Elgersburg

Count Palatine William of Birkenfeld-Gelnhausen (4 January 1701 in Gelnhausen – 25 December 1760 in The Hague) was a titular Count Palatine of Zweibrücken-Birkenfeld and an Imperial Field Marshal.


William was the youngest son of the Count Palatine John Charles of Gelnhausen (1638–1704) from his second marriage, Esther Maria (1665–1725), a daughter of George Frederick, Baron Witzleben of Elgersburg.

William served from 1729 in the Austrian army and was wounded during the Battle of Mollwitz. In 1742, he won a victory against the French general Bouffleur and drove the French from Tein. In 1743, he became General of the Cavalry in the Dutch army. In 1754, he accompanied Emperor Francis I to his coronation in Frankfurt. In the same year, he became imperial field marshal. In 1757 he was appointed governor of Namur.


  • Jean Baptiste Ladvocat: Neues historisches Hand-Lexikon, Stettin, 1800, p. 229 f
  • Johann Samuel Ersch: Allgemeine Encyklopädie der Wissenschaften und Künste: in alphabetischer Folge, section 2: H - N, part 21: Johann (Infant von Castilien) - Johann-Boniten, p. 189