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William of Wied

William of Wied (1876-1945) was the short-reigned prince of Albania from February 21, 1914 to September 3, 1914. A member of the Prussian royal family, William was selected by a coalition of Western powers, including the United States, the United Kingdom, France, and Italy to rule over newly independent Albania. A delegation of Albanian notables made a formal request in February 1914, which he accepted, and one month later, in March, he was already in his provisional capital of Durrės[?], organizing his government.

His brief reign was a turbulent one, marred by opposition to his foreign origins. This quickly erupted into civil war, led from exile by his former Minister of Internal Affairs and War, Essad Pasha, who had been dismissed for a charge of treason. William finally left the country in September, 1914, and spent World War I in Germany. After the war, he attempted to regain his throne, but the participants at the Paris Peace Conference[?] were hesitant to allow restore it to a German who had just fought against them. William of Wied died in 1945.

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