List of the electors, dukes and kings of Saxony

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Elector Friedrich August I.
Due to the Polish royal dignity, "August the Strong" is often incorrectly referred to as the King of Saxony.

The list of electors, dukes and kings included in chronological order (above) Saxon rulers of the collection of the old part of the Duchy of Saxony-Wittenberg under the Ascanians in the Elector Stand (1356) about their extinction and the transition of electoral rights and territories of the acquis the Wettin until the end of the monarchy (1918) in Saxony, which was elevated to a kingdom, as the predecessor of today's Free State . Both noble families practiced a patrilineal line of succession , i. H. only the sons of a ruler or - if there were none - his brothers were considered heirs to the throne. Electresses, duchesses and queens of Saxony therefore did not exist in their own right, but as honorary titles of the wives of the respective ruler. You can find them in the list of Electresses, Duchesses and Queens of Saxony .

Unless otherwise noted, the rulers listed here are the sons of their predecessors. Due to a lack of primogeniture , however, all male descendants were equally entitled to inherit until the late period, which is why there were diverse and complicated splintering of territories and the development of new branch lines. In the 15th century, for example, in addition to the elector himself, his uncles and brothers temporarily ruled over independent lands that had been detached from the property of the entire house - since it was possible, due to previous leaseholdings by the Wettins, that all (including younger ones) Members of a princely family were able to hold all titles in the entire house. B. every Wettiner from 1423 the title of Duke of Saxony - regardless of whether he was also elector of the empire, only had areas of land in Thuringia or was a non-ruling prince.

The Ascanians

The Golden Bull issued by Emperor Charles IV in 1356 counted the Duchy of Saxony-Wittenberg among the electoral princes . As a result, Saxony-Wittenberg secured the previously exercised right to elect a king and many other privileges, which made the dukes rise to the rank of the highest-ranking princes in the empire.

Name (life data) Reign Remarks
Rudolf-I-von-Sachsen.jpg Rudolf I
(* around 1284; † March 12, 1356)
1356 Since 1298 Duke of Saxony-Wittenberg.
Rudolf-II-von-Sachsen.jpg Rudolf II
(around 1307 - December 6, 1370)
1356-1370 Dispute with Sachsen-Lauenburg over the electoral dignity and with the Wettins over areas.
WenzelISachsenWittenberg.jpg Wenzel
(around 1337 - May 15, 1388)
1370-1388 Brother of Rudolf II. Also Prince of Lüneburg .
RudolfIIISachsenWittenberg.jpg Rudolf III.
(* before 1367 - † June 11, 1419)
1388-1419 Took part in the Hussite Wars . Poisoned on the way to Bohemia .
AlbrechtIIISachsenWittenberg.jpg Albrecht III, "the poor"
(* around 1375/1380; † before November 12, 1422)
1419-1423 Brother of Rudolf III. Last elector of the Ascan family.

The Wettins

After the Ascanians of Wittenberg died out , Margrave Friedrich IV of Meissen was enfeoffed with the Duchy of Saxony-Wittenberg , recognizing the electoral dignity associated with it. The name Saxony now moved further up the Elbe in order to ultimately cover all other Wettin territories (including the heartland of Mark Meißen and the Landgraviate of Thuringia ). The new Electorate of Saxony , which had now emerged , had nothing in common with the old tribal duchy (main part of today's Lower Saxony ) and with the former Ascanians, who still belong to Lauenburg and Anhalt .

Name (life data) Reign Remarks
Friedrich4.jpg Friedrich I, "the arguable"
(April 11, 1370 - January 4, 1428)
1423-1428 Already since 1381 as Friedrich IV. Margrave of Meissen and Count Palatine of Saxony.
FedericoVIWettin.jpeg Frederick II, "the meek"
(* August 22, 1412; † September 7, 1464)
1428-1464 As Friedrich V, Margrave of Meissen and Count Palatine of Saxony. He left Thuringia, which had been regained by inheritance in 1440, to his younger brother Wilhelm in the Altenburg division of 1445 . After Friedrich's death, his sons Ernst and Albrecht initially took over the government together.

The division of Leipzig

In the partition of Leipzig in 1485, the brothers Ernst and Albrecht divided the Wettin lands among themselves. The Duchy of Saxony-Wittenberg (with the later Kurkreis ) and the associated electoral dignity as well as most of the Thuringian lands remained with Ernst and his descendants ("Ernestine line"). The descendants of Albrecht ("Albertine line") received the main part of Meissen and henceforth ruled Dresden as dukes of Saxony.

(Electors and Dukes of Saxony)
Name (life data) Reign Remarks
1441 Ernst.jpg Ernst
(* March 24, 1441 - † August 26, 1486)
1464-1486 In 1485 the Wettin lands were divided between him and his brother Albrecht.
Lucas Cranach the Elder  Ä.  097.jpg Friedrich III., "The wise"
(* January 17, 1463; † May 5, 1525)
1486-1525 Supported Martin Luther .
Lucas Cranach the Elder  - Elector Johann the Constant of Saxony.jpg Johann "the constant"
(born June 13, 1468 - † August 16, 1532)
1525-1532 Brother of Friedrich III. Co-founder of the Schmalkaldic League .
Lucas Cranach the Elder  Ä.  044.jpg Johann Friedrich "the Magnanimous"
(* June 30, 1503; † March 3, 1554)
1532-1547 Had to cede the electoral dignity and large areas to his cousin Moritz.
(Dukes of Saxony)
Name (life data) Reign Remarks
Herzog-Albrecht-der-Beherzt.jpg Albrecht "the brave"
(* July 31, 1443; † September 12, 1500)
1485-1500 Also governor of Friesland .
Lucas Cranach the Elder  - Portrait of Duke George of Saxony (Gemäldegalerie, Berlin) .jpg George "the Bearded"
(* August 27, 1471; † April 17, 1539)
1500-1539 Opponent of Protestantism .
Lucas Cranach the Elder  Ä.  042 small.jpg Heinrich "the Pious"
(* March 16, 1473; † August 18, 1541)
1539-1541 Brother of George the Bearded. Converted to Protestantism.
Moritz Sachsen.JPG Moritz
(March 21, 1521 - July 11, 1553)
1541-1547 In the Schmalkaldic War he sided with Emperor Charles V , led the prince revolt against him in 1552.

Electoral Saxony among the Albertines

As a result of the Schmalkaldic War , Johann Friedrich, as head of the Schmalkaldic League, lost large parts of his land in Upper Saxony and the electoral dignity to his cousin Moritz , who had been on the emperor's side . His sons could only keep the possessions in Thuringia .

Name (life data) Reign Remarks
Lucas Cranach the Younger - Prince Elector Moritz of Saxony - Google Art Project.jpg Moritz
(March 21, 1521 - July 11, 1553)
1547-1553 Duke of Albertine Saxony since 1541. Also known as "Judas of Meissen" because of his selfish betrayal of the Protestant cause.
Zacharias Wehme - Prince Elector August of Saxony (1586) - Google Art Project.jpg August
(July 31, 1526 - February 11, 1586)
1553-1586 Brother of Moritz. Fought Calvinism . Under his rule, Saxony experienced an economic and social boom. Prototype of the caring sovereign prince ("Father August").
Christian I of Saxony.jpg Christian I
(October 29, 1560 - September 25, 1591)
1586-1591 The survey of Saxony, which had already begun under his father August, will be completed during his reign.
Zacharias Wehme - Prince Elector Christian II of Saxony (ca.1601-1606) - Google Art Project.jpg Christian II
(23 September 1583 - 23 June 1611)
1591-1611 He came to the throne as a child and was therefore under the guardianship of Duke Friedrich Wilhelm of Saxe-Weimar until 1601 .
Johann Georg I Saxony.jpg Johann Georg I
(March 5, 1585 - October 8, 1656)
1611-1656 Brother of Christian II. During the Thirty Years' War he was initially neutral, but then allied himself with the Swedes and, after the death of Gustav Adolf, with Emperor Ferdinand II. Because of his passion for hunting and his coarse demeanor, called "Bear George". In his will he had his own rulership split off for his later sons ( see the duchies of Saxony-Weißenfels , Saxony-Merseburg and Saxony-Zeitz ).
Johan Georg II Johann Fink, before 1675.jpg Johann Georg II
(June 10, 1613 - September 1, 1680)
1656-1680 Dedicated to the economic reconstruction of Saxony after the Thirty Years War.
Johann Georg III.  of Saxony (portrait) .jpg Johann Georg III.
(June 30, 1647 - September 22, 1691)
1680-1691 Introduced a standing army in Saxony , hence also called "Saxon Mars".
Johann Georg IV of Saxony.jpg Johann Georg IV.
(* October 18, 1668; † April 27, 1694)
1691-1694 Died of the leaves after only three years of reign .
August the Strong of Saxony.jpg Friedrich August I, "the Strong"
(* May 12, 1670; † February 1, 1733)
1694-1733 Brother of Johann Georg IV. As August II. 1697–1704 and 1709–1733 King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania . Dresden and Warsaw experienced their cultural and architectural heyday under his rule.
King Augustus III of Poland.jpg Friedrich August II
(October 17, 1696 - October 5, 1763)
1733-1763 When August III. also King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania. The defeat by Prussia in the Seven Years' War plunged Saxony into financial ruin.
Gottfried Boy 001.jpg Friedrich Christian
(born September 5, 1722 - † December 17, 1763)
1763 Died of the leaves after only 74 days of reign.
Fryderyk August I.jpg Friedrich August III., "The Just"
(* December 23, 1750 - May 5, 1827)
1763-1806 Came to the throne in childhood. Until he came of age in 1768, his uncle Prince Franz Xaver therefore acted as custodian administrator. His mother, the dowager elector and mother, Maria Antonia Walpurgis, was also involved in government activities. He later renounced the Polish crown and initially did not participate in either the Reichsdeputationshauptschluss or in the founding of the Rhine Confederation .

Elevation to the Kingdom of Saxony

Napoleon elevated the Electorate of Saxony, which was on his side, to a kingdom in 1806 .

Name (life data) Reign Remarks
Fryderyk August I.jpg Friedrich August I., "the righteous" 1806-1827 In 1806 he sided with France during the Napoleonic Wars, for which he was made king by Napoleon. 1807-1815 he was Duke of Warsaw . After the Congress of Vienna , Saxony lost over half of its territory to Prussia, including the old Saxon spa district around Wittenberg (Prussian province of Saxony ), with the result that the Kingdom of Saxony lost its last geographical connection to the medieval Saxon duchy and now relies entirely on the old market Meissen restricted.
Anton-sachsen.jpg Anton "the Kind"
(* December 27, 1755 - June 6, 1836)
1827-1836 Brother Friedrich August I. A new constitution made Saxony a constitutional monarchy .
Friedrich-August-II-König-Sachsen.JPG Friedrich August II.
(May 18, 1797 - August 9, 1854)
1836-1854 Nephew Anton. Died in Tyrol after an accident.
Louis Ferdinand von Rayski - King John of Saxony, 1870.jpg Johann
(December 12, 1801 - October 29, 1873)
1854-1873 Brother Friedrich August II. In the German War of 1866, Saxony fought on the side of Austria. After the defeat of Königgrätz , they joined the North German Confederation and finally the German Empire .
King Albert of Saxony (portrait) .jpg Albert
(April 23, 1828 - June 19, 1902)
1873-1902 Carried out several important construction projects in Dresden, including the construction of the largest contiguous barracks in Germany in Albertstadt .
George of Saxony 1895.jpg Georg
(August 8, 1832 - October 15, 1904)
1902-1904 Brother alberts. He was nearly 70 when he took office and only ruled for two years.
Friedrich August III of Saxony in parade uniform.jpg Friedrich August III.
(May 25, 1865 - February 18, 1932)
1904-1918 Last Saxon King. Resigned after the November Revolution of 1918.

See also



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This version was added to the selection of informative lists and portals on June 20, 2007 .