William, Duke of Brunswick

Wilhelm August Ludwig Maximilian Friedrich ( born April 25, 1806 Braunschweig, † October 18, 1884 in Sibyllenort ), Duke of Brunswick and Lüneburg was from 1830 until his death, Duke of Brunswick.

Life and work

William was the second son of Friedrich Wilhelm, Duke of Brunswick and Lüneburg and Maria of Baden (1782-1808), daughter of Karl Ludwig of Baden ( 1755-1801 ).

He grew up following the death of his mother in London. Shortly his father fell in Quatre -Bras after his return in 1815 to Brunswick, he fell and his brother Charles under the guardianship of her uncle George, King of Hanover and Prince Regent of Great Britain. De facto, but their guardianship performed by Brunswick statesmen, or were they themselves care of educators.

From 1820 to 1822, the brothers held in Lausanne on, followed by autumn 1823 William went to study in Göttingen. Finally, he performed the Prussian military service, according to his own statement the happiest time of his life.

Military career

On October 30, 1821 Wilhelm was first appointed captain in the Hussars Regiment Hanover and on 17 February 1826 the Prussian 2nd Guards Landwehr Cavalry Regiment. His promotion to major was followed on 22 October 1828th From March 6, 1843, he served in the army as a major general, was appointed commander of the regiment, and lieutenant general. Since 30 March 1844, he was general of the cavalry and was finally adopted on June 27, 1848 Royal Hannoveranischer field marshal and a regiment of the Austrian K & K Dragoons 7 and the Royal Hanoverian niches Guard Cuirassier Regiment.

On the throne of Brunswick 1830-1884

Wilhelm followed in the turmoil of the revolutionary uprisings of 1830 in the land of his most infamous brother Charles II to the throne of Brunswick. He remained unmarried and died without legitimate offspring in 1884. With him the "New House of Brunswick " which reigned since 1533 in Guelph ancestral country and next to the " New House Lüneburg " (later House of Hanover ) represented the elder Welf line went out.

William celibacy seems to be due, among other things, in the rivalry with his brother Karl. Karl lived after his expulsion mainly in Geneva. In Brunswick, it was considered likely that the embittered Karl would challenge a succession of descendants of his brother until the last instance. It is said that William had (eg Treseburg / resin ) fathered several illegitimate children in Braunschweig and in the Duchy. A marriage was not possible ( age difference, not belonging to the nobility ). It was paid "hush money " from the Duke. A particular known family persisted through generations to the rule of silence.

After William's death, a Regency took over the business of government in Braunschweig. Since Prussia and the House of Hanover were enemies since the annexation of the Hanoverian kingdom in 1866, it was the actual heir apparent Ernst August of Hanover, Duke of Cumberland failed to rule the country Brunswick. From 1885 to 1913 took regent of other royal houses the government. It was not until 1913 after the reconciliation with the Hohenzollern due to the wedding of Ernst August, the son of the Duke of Cumberland, with Viktoria Luise of Prussia, the only daughter of Kaiser Wilhelm II, returned with the Guelph selfsame ruling as the last Duke back to Brunswick.