Georg von Waldburg-Zeil (1488–1531)

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Colored woodcut by Hans Burgkmair the Elder. Ä.

George III Truchseß von Waldburg-Zeil (born January 25, 1488 in Waldsee , † May 29, 1531 in Waldsee) was a German military leader, also known as Bauernjörg, and the best-known representative of the Waldburg family in the 16th century, which was part of the Holy Roman Empire from 1525 Held hereditary office and led this as part of her name.


Georg was the son of Johann II von Waldburg-Wolfegg († October 19, 1511) and Helena von Hohenzollern . In 1508 he served Duke Ulrich von Württemberg and helped him put down poor Konrad . In 1509 he married Apollonia, daughter of Count Johannes von Sonnenberg . Appolonia died in 1512. After that, in 1513 he married Maria, the daughter of Count Joachim von Oettingen . In 1516 he fought for Bavaria on the side of Emperor Maximilian in northern Italy against France and the Lombard cities. In 1517 he accompanied Duke Wilhelm IV to the Emperor in the Netherlands. From there he went on a pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela by sea .

In the following years he mainly carried out orders for the Swabian Federation . In 1519 he drove his former employer Duke Ulrich from Württemberg on his behalf .

In 1525 he took over the governorship in the Duchy of Württemberg , which his cousin Wilhelm had held since 1521, but had to give up due to a stroke. Georg and Wilhelm were both appointed by Emperor Charles V on July 27, 1526 in Toledo as Imperial Hereditary Sessors.


Statue of George in the knight's hall of Wolfegg Castle

As a farmer's jörg , Georg became famous for his role in the peasants' war and feared for his cruel and merciless crackdown on the rebellious peasants.

When the Peasants' War began in Germany in 1524, most of the imperial troops were tied up in the Italian wars . It was only with great effort that Georg von Waldburg managed to recruit 4,000 mercenaries and, contrary to their convictions and with numerous desertions , lead them against the peasants. As long as he saw no chance of a military victory, he concluded treaties with the peasants (e.g. the Treaty of Weingarten ), which brought them slight improvements, but did not change their basic situation and strengthened the position of the rulers.

Only after the victory in the Battle of Pavia en masse, unemployed war veterans returned to southern Germany, did enough mercenaries flow to Waldburg's recruits. Under his leadership, one peasant heap after the other was broken up. He pulled the scattered peasants after them, attacked them in their villages, had them tortured, mutilated and executed. Among the ringleaders executed on his instructions was Jäcklein Rohrbach, who was burned alive in May 1525 . He made a major contribution to the defeat of the farmers and their leaders such as Anton Eisenhut , Florian Geyer and Wendel Hipler .

Truchseß von Waldburg-Zeil is one of the main characters in Wilhelm Hauff's novel Lichtenstein , whose plot takes place towards the end of the Peasant Wars.

His tomb is in the collegiate church of St. Peter (Bad Waldsee) .


Web links

Commons : Georg von Waldburg-Zeil  - Collection of images, videos and audio files


  1. ^ Rudolf Rauh: Reichserbtruchseß Wilhelm d. Ä. from Waldburg. In: Swabian homeland. Vol. 9, 1958, ISSN  0342-7595 , pp. 223-229.