Southern Anthology

Families on the Frontiers of the Old South

Frederick William I of Prussia, King in Prussia

Frederick William I of Prussia, King in Prussia[1]

Male 1688 - 1740  (51 years)

Personal Information    |    Sources    |    Event Map    |    All    |    PDF

  • Name Frederick William I of Prussia 
    King Frederick William I of Prussia
    King Frederick William I of Prussia
    Workshop of Antoine Pesne (1683–1757).
    Suffix King in Prussia 
    Born 14 Aug 1688  Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    House Hohenzollern 
    Died 31 May 1740  Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Buried Friedenskirche, Potsdam, Brandenburg, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Notes 
    • FREDERICK I. (1657-1713), king of Prussia, and (as Frederick III.) elector of Brandenburg, was the second son of the great elector, Frederick William, by his first marriage with Louise Henriette, daughter of Frederick Henry of Orange. Born at Königsberg on the 11th of July 1657, he was educated and greatly influenced by Eberhard Danckelmann, and became heir to the throne of Brandenburg through the death of his elder brother, Charles Emil, in 1674. He appears to have taken some part in public business before the death of his father; and the court at Berlin was soon disturbed by quarrels between the young prince and his stepmother, Dorothea of Holstein-Glücksburg. In 1686 Dorothea persuaded her husband to bequeath outlying portions of his lands to her four sons; and Frederick, fearing he would be poisoned, left Brandenburg determined to prevent any diminution of his inheritance. By promising to restore Schwiebus to Silesia after his accession he won the support of the emperor Leopold I.; but eventually he gained his end in a peaceable fashion. Having become elector of Brandenburg in May 1688, he came to terms with his half-brothers and their mother. In return for a sum of money these princes renounced their rights under their father's will, and the new elector thus secured the whole of Frederick William's territories. After much delay and grumbling he fulfilled his bargain with Leopold and gave up Schwiebus in 1695. At home and abroad Frederick continued the policy of the great elector. He helped William of Orange to make his descent on England; added various places, including the principality of Neuchâtel, to his lands; and exercised some influence on the course of European politics by placing his large and efficient army at the disposal of the emperor and his allies (see Brandenburg). He was present in person at the siege of Bonn in 1689, but was not often in command of his troops. The elector was very fond of pomp, and, striving to model his court upon that of Louis XIV., he directed his main energies towards obtaining for himself the title of king. In spite of the assistance he had given to the emperor his efforts met with no success for some years; but towards 1700 Leopold, faced with the prospect of a new struggle with France, was inclined to view the idea more favourably. Having insisted upon various conditions, prominent among them being military aid for the approaching war, he gave the imperial sanction to Frederick's request in November 1700; whereupon the elector, hurrying at once to Königsberg, crowned himself with great ceremony king of Prussia on the 18th of January 1701. According to his promise the king sent help to the emperor; and during the War of the Spanish Succession the troops of Brandenburg-Prussia rendered great assistance to the allies, fighting with distinction at Blenheim and elsewhere. Frederick, who was deformed through an injury to his spine, died on the 25th of February 1713. By his extravagance the king exhausted the treasure amassed by his father, burdened his country with heavy taxes, and reduced its finances to chaos. His constant obligations to the emperor drained Brandenburg of money which might have been employed more profitably at home, and prevented her sovereign from interfering in the politics of northern Europe. Frederick, however, was not an unpopular ruler, and by making Prussia into a kingdom he undoubtedly advanced it several stages towards its future greatness. He founded the university of Halle, and the Academy of Sciences at Berlin; welcomed and protected Protestant refugees from France and elsewhere; and lavished money on the erection of public buildings.

      The king was married three times. His second wife, Sophie Charlotte (1668-1705), sister of the English king George I., was the friend of Leibnitz and one of the most cultured princesses of the age; she bore him his only son, his successor, King Frederick William I.


      See W. Hahn, Friedrich I., König in Preussen (Berlin, 1876); J. G. Droysen, Geschichte der preussischen Politik, Band iv. (Leipzig, 1872); E. Heyck, Friedrich I. und die Begründung des preussischen Königtums (Bielefeld, 1901): C. Graf von Dohna, Mémoires originaux sur le règne et la cour de Frédéric Ier (Berlin, 1883); Aus dem Briefwechsel König Friedrichs I. von Preussen und seiner Familie (Berlin, 1901); and T. Carlyle, History of Frederick the Great, vol. i. (London, 1872).
      [2]
    Person ID I24618  Dickinson
    Last Modified 22 Aug 2019 

    Father Frederick I, King in Prussia,   b. 11 Jul 1657, Kaliningrad, Russia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 25 Feb 1713, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 55 years) 
    Relationship Birth 
    Mother Sophia Charlotte of Hanover, Queen consort in Prussia,   b. 30 Oct 1668, Iburg Castle, Bad Iburg, Lower Saxony, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 1 Feb 1705, Hanover, Lower Saxony, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 36 years) 
    Relationship Birth 
    Family ID F7633  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Sophia Dorothea of Hanover, Queen consort in Prussia,   b. 26 Mar 1685, Hanover, Lower Saxony, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 28 Jun 1757, Monbijou Palace, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 72 years) 
    Married 17 Nov 1706  Hanover, Lower Saxony, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
    +1. Wilhelmine of Prussia, Margravine of Brandenburg-Bayreuth,   b. 3 Jul 1709, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 14 Oct 1758, Bayreuth, Bavaria, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 49 years)  [Birth]
     2. Frederick II, King of Prussia,   b. 24 Jan 1712, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 17 Aug 1786, Potsdam, Brandenburg, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 74 years)  [Birth]
    +3. Friederike Louise of Prussia, Margravine of Brandenburg-Ansbach,   b. 29 Aug 1714, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 4 Feb 1784, Unterschwaningen, Ansbach, Bavaria, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 69 years)  [Birth]
    +4. Philippine Charlotte of Prussia, Dcss consort of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel,   b. 13 Mar 1716, Berliner Schloss, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 17 Feb 1801, Braunschweig, Lower Saxony, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 84 years)  [Birth]
    +5. Sophia Dorothea of Prussia, Margravine of Brandenburg-Schwedt,   b. 25 Jan 1719, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 13 Nov 1765, Schwedt, Brandenburg, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 46 years)  [Birth]
    +6. Louisa Ulrika of Prussia, Queen consort of Sweden,   b. 24 Jul 1720, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 16 Jul 1782, Svartsjö Palace, Svartsjö, Stockholm, Sweden Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 61 years)  [Birth]
    +7. Augustus William of Prussia, Prince of Prussia,   b. 9 Aug 1722, Berliner Schloss, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 12 Jun 1758, Oranienburg, Brandenburg, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 35 years)  [Birth]
     8. Anna Amalia of Prussia, Abbess of Quedlinburg,   b. 9 Nov 1723, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 30 Mar 1787  (Age 63 years)  [Birth]
     9. Henry of Prussia, Prince of Prussia,   b. 18 Jan 1726, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 3 Aug 1802, Rheinsberg, Ostprignitz-Ruppin, Brandenburg, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 76 years)  [Birth]
    +10. Augustus Ferdinand of Prussia, Prince of Prussia,   b. 23 May 1730, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 2 May 1813, Berlin, Germany Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 82 years)  [Birth]
    Last Modified 19 Aug 2019 
    Family ID F7631  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - 14 Aug 1688 - Berlin, Germany Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - 17 Nov 1706 - Hanover, Lower Saxony, Germany Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 31 May 1740 - Berlin, Germany Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsBuried - - Friedenskirche, Potsdam, Brandenburg, Germany Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Earth 
    Pin Legend  : Address       : Location       : City/Town       : County/Shire       : State/Province       : Country       : Not Set

  • Sources 
    1. [S336470] Wikipedia, (Online: https://en.wikipedia.org), "Frederick William I of Prussia" at http://bit.ly/2P332pV.

    2. [S398] Encyclopædia Britannica, 11th Ed., (Cambridge: University of Cambridge, 1911), 11: 52 and online at http://bit.ly/2P1V7cA.