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Hohenzollern are a European royal family, noted as the rulers of Brandenburg from 1415, then of the duchy (1525-1701) and kingdom (1701-1918) of Prussia and subsequently (1871-1918) of the German Empire before losing their status as a result of World War I.

The Hohenzollern family came originally from south-west Germany; their name derives from their 13th-century castle of Zollern, near Stuttgart, Germany. Later, they became rulers of Nuremberg and other territories in Franconia and Swabia. Nonetheless, the real importance of the Hohenzollerns began with their being raised to the rank of Elector for the Holy Roman Empire in 1415 upon the acquisition of Brandenburg by the first Hohenzollern Elector, Friedrich I; the Brandenburg lands would form the core of the family's power for the next five hundred years.

In chronological order, and grouped according to their most important title, the Hohenzollern rulers were:

Electors of Brandenburg

Margraves of Brandenburg-Ansbach

Margraves of Brandenburg-Bayreuth

  • Christian (1581-1655) Margrave of Brandenburg-Prussia etc
  • Christian Ernst
  • Georg Friedrich Carl

There were also Margraves of Brandenburg-Culmbach,Brandenburg-Kuestrin, Brandenburg-Ansbach-Bayreuth and many more.

Dukes of Prussia

Kings of Prussia

German Emperors

The Hohenzollern family continues to exist, and since Wilhelm's death the scions have been:

  • Crown Prince Wilhelm of Prussia (1941-1951)
  • Prince Louis Ferdinand of Prussia (1951-1994)
  • Prince Georg Friedrich of Prussia (1994- )

A cadet branch of the Hohenzollerns, the Hohenzollern-Sigmaringens, were also important landowners in pre-German Empire Germany, and later were the princes (1866-1881) and kings (1881-1947) of Romania. French opposition to their candidacy for the throne of Spain led to the Franco-Prussian War (1870-1871) and the founding (January 1871) of the German Empire.

Kings of Romania (Princes to 1881)

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