The family probably originated from Pomerania, but in the beginning of the 15th century moved to Livonia. The first historical account of this family dates to 1290, when Johannes de Pala was Vogt at Turaida.
On 18 September 1679, Charles XI of Sweden granted a barony to five brothers of the family and all their descendants. In 1799, Emperor Paul I of Russia gave Peter Ludwig von der Pahlen and all of his descendants the rank of count.
By a decision of the Russian Empire in 1755 and 1865, most of the other members of the Pahlen family received the Russian baronial rank. Members of the branches with Russian baronial titles also live in Sweden, and they form part of the unintroduced nobility.
Notable family members
- Count Peter Ludwig von der Pahlen (Pyotr Alexeyevich, 1745-1826), Russian courtier, organizer of the assassination of Paul I of Russia
- Count Pyotr Petrovich Palen (Palen the 1st; 1778-1864), Russian General of Cavalry, hero of the Patriotic War of 1812, Russo-Turkish War, 1828-1829 and the campaign against the November Uprising in Poland; son of Pyotr Alexeyevich
- Count Fyodor Petrovich Pahlen (1780-1863), Russian diplomat, Governor-General of Novorossiya, and Plenipotentiary President of the Divans in the Danubian Principalities; son of Pyotr Alexeyevich
- Count Paul Carl Ernst Wilhelm Philipp von der Pahlen (Palen the 2nd, 1775–1834), Russian General of Cavalry, hero of the Patriotic War of 1812; son of Paul Ludwig
- Baron Ivan Alexeyevich Palen (1740-1817), colonel, Russian statesman; brother of Pyotr Alexeyvich
- Baron Ditrich von der Pahlen, Russian military officer, friend of Mikhail Lermontov
- Count Konstantin Ivanovich Palen (1833-1912), Russian General and statesman, hero of the Siege of Sevastopol (1854–1855), Pskov governor, Russian minister for justice (1867–1878); grandson of Pyotr Alexeyevich
- Count Konstantin Konstantinovich Palen (1861-1923), statesman, Privy Councillor, senator, Governor of Vilnius
- Count Alexey Petrovich Palen (1874-1938), Russian Lieutenant-General, White movement officer under Nikolai Nikolaevich Yudenich
- Emanuel von der Pahlen (4 July 1882 – 18 July 1952), astronomer with a lunar crater named after him
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to House of Pahlen.|
- Pahlens (in Russian)
- Pahlens in the All-Russian Genealogical Tree (in Russian)
- Barons von der Pahlen (in Russian)