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Duke of Lorraine

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Title: Duke of Lorraine  
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Subject: Battle of Agincourt, Capetian dynasty, Franconia, House of Habsburg, List of Polish monarchs, War of the Polish Succession, 1766, 1683, House of Savoy-Carignano, Thomas Francis, Prince of Carignano
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Duke of Lorraine

The rulers of Lorraine have held different posts under different governments over different regions. The first rulers of the region were kings of the Franks whose kingdom was called Lotharingia. The Latin construction "Lotharingia" evolved over time into "Lorraine" in French, "Lotharingen" in Dutch and "Lothringen" in German. After the Carolingian kingdom was absorbed into its neighbouring realms in the late ninth century, dukes were appointed over the territory. In the mid-tenth century, the duchy was divided into Lower Lorraine and Upper Lorraine, the first evolving into the historical Low Countries, the second became known as the Duchy of Lorraine and existed well into the modern era.

Kings of Lotharingia

Charles the Bald claimed Lotharingia on Lothair's death and was crowned king in Metz, but his brother Louis the German opposed his claim and in 870 the Treaty of Mersen divided Lotharingia between the two brothers and subsequently their sons. In 880, the Treaty of Ribemont gave the whole of Lotharingia to Louis the Younger, son of Louis the German.

In 925, Lotharingia was subsumed into the Kingdom of Germany.

Dukes of Lorraine

In 959, Lorraine was divided into two districts: Upper and Lower, each being given to a margrave or vice-duke under Bruno. Upon Bruno's death in 965, that of Lower Lorraine, whose margrave had died, was left vacant until 977. In that year Charles was appointed duke of Lower Lorraine and Frederick I was elevated duke in Upper Lorraine. The two duchies remained separate, following separate pathways, except for the brief period between 1033 and 1044.

Dukes of Lower Lorraine

Note that the numbering of the dukes varies between sources.

Matfriding dynasty

Carolingian dynasty

House of Ardennes–Verdun

House of Luxembourg

House of Ardennes–Verdun

  • Godfrey III the Bearded (1065–1069) (also known as Godfrey II, also duke of Upper Lorraine)
  • Godfrey IV (1069–1076) (also known as Godfrey III)

Salian dynasty

House of Boulogne (Ardennes–Bouillon)

House of Limburg

House of Leuven

House of Limburg

House of Leuven

Geoffrey of Stanton, brother of Godfrey, held from 1142-abt.1154, til the son came of age.

Passes to the Duke of Brabant, who until 1795 kept the title "Duke of Lothier".

Dukes of Upper Lorraine

House of Ardennes-Bar

House of Ardennes-Verdun

  • Gothelo (r. 1033–1044) (also duke of Lower Lorraine).
  • Godfrey, the Bearded (r. 1044–1046) (also duke of Lower Lorraine)

House of Metz (Ardennes-Metz)

Portrait Name Start term End term Note
Adalbert 1047 1048  
Gerhard 1048 6 March 1070  
Thierry II 6 March 1070 23 January 1115  
Simon I 23 January 1115 13 April 1138  
Matthias I 13 April 1138 13 May 1176  
Simon II 13 May 1176 1205  
Frederick I 1205 7 April 1206  
Frederick II 7 April 1206 10 October 1213  
Theobald I 10 October 1213 17 February 1220  
Matthias II 17 February 1220 24 June 1251  
Frederick III 24 June 1251 31 December 1302  
Theobald II 31 December 1302 13 May 1312  
Frederick IV 13 May 1312 23 August 1328  
Raoul 23 August 1328 26 August 1346 killed at the Battle of Crécy
John I 26 August 1346 27 September 1390  
Charles II 27 September 1390 25 January 1431  
Isabella 25 January 1431 28 February 1453 with her husband, René I

House of Anjou

Portrait Name Start term End term Note
René I 25 January 1431 28 February 1453 with his wife, Isabella
John II 28 February 1453 16 December 1470  
Nicholas I 16 December 1470 24 July 1473  

House of Lorraine

Junior branch of the previous rulers of Ardennes–Metz, known as the House of Lorraine

Portrait Name Start term End term Note
René II 24 July 1473 10 December 1508 grandson of René I and Isabella; also Duke of Bar
Antoine 10 December 1508 14 June 1544  
Francis I 14 June 1544 12 June 1545  
Charles III 12 June 1545 14 May 1608  
Henry II 14 May 1608 31 July 1624  
Nicole 31 July 1624 25 November 1625 she was the daughter of Henry I; the estates of Lorraine eventually decided that she was not eligible to reign, and gave the crown to her uncle, Francis II; her husband and first cousin, Charles IV, would reign thereafter
Francis II 25 November 1625 1 December 1625 he immediately abdicated in favor of his son, Charles IV; died 1632
Charles IV 1 December 1625 19 January 1634 abdicated in favor of his brother
Nicholas II 19 January 1634 1 April 1634 fled into exile and abdicated in favour of his older brother; the duchy remained under effective French control for the next 27 years
Charles IV 1 April 1634 18 September 1675 nominally restored as a result of his brother's abdication; Lorraine was occupied by France, and the Duke in exile, from 1634 to 1661 and again from 1670 until his death
Charles V Leopold 18 September 1675 18 April 1690 He was in exile and Lorraine was occupied by France throughout his nominal reign
Leopold 18 April 1690 27 March 1729 He was in exile and Lorraine was occupied by France until 30 October 1697, when it was returned to Léopold Joseph; it was again occupied by France from 1702 to 1714, although the duke remained in place
Francis III Stephen 27 March 1729 9 July 1737 traded Lorraine in exchange for the Grand Duchy of Tuscany; elected Holy Roman Emperor in 1745; died 1765, husband of Empress Maria Theresa

House of Leszczyński

Portrait Name Start term End term Note
Stanislaus 9 July 1737 23 February 1766 former king of Poland. After him, the Duchy is inherited by his son-in-law, king Louis XV of France and incorporated in his dominions

See also

External links

  • Titles of the dukes of Lorraine from contemporary documents with bibliography

Further reading

Putnam, Ruth. Alsace and Lorraine: From Cæsar to Kaiser, 58 B.C.-1871 A.D. New York: 1915.

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