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Josef Friedrich Wilhelm, Prince of Hohenzollern-Hechingen


Josef Friedrich Wilhelm born 12 November 1717 in Bayreuth; died 9 April 1798 in Hechingen, was prince of Hohenzollern-Hechingen from 1750 until his death

Contents

  • 1 Life
  • 2 Issue
  • 3 Bibliography
  • 4 Notes

Life

Prince Josef Friedrich Wilhelm, Officer in Imperial Service, was the son of Imperial field Marshal Herman Friedrich of Hohenzollern-Hechingen and Josepha von Oettingen zu Spielberg He succeeded his unmarried cousin, Frederick Louis, in 1750 On 25 June 1750 in Vienna, Josef married Princess Maria Theresia Folch de Cardona y Silva, the 18-year-old daughter of Fürst von Cardona Maria Theresia died only three months into the marriage and left behind her family's fortune in its entirety Marriages in the House of Hohenzollern-Hechingen were often chosen based on dowry and inheritance

In 1751, Josef married Countess Maria Theresia of Waldburg-Zeil who bore him six children, of which only the youngest daughter grew past childhood

Josef was an enthusiastic hunter and traveler In 1764, during a stay in Bad Wildbad, he became acquainted with a Prussian Stabskapitän who had been released from the Prussian army after the end of the Seven Years' War This man was Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben 1730–1794, who would spend the next 12 years as Hofmarschall in Josef's service before his role assisting George Washington in the Revolutionary War as General Inspector and Organizer of the United States Army

Steuben was also involved when the prince began to implement money-saving or money-creating policies These include his attempt in 1772 to dissolve the court and to travel incognito with only his wife and Steuben accompanying him He stayed for extended periods of time in Strasbourg, Montpellier, and Lyon Josef spent much of his money and time with company, fine dining, gambling, theater, carnival, and hunting This continued for three full years, until the princess succeeded in convincing the prince to end his masquerade

In the following years, Josef became comfortable in the position of an enlightened leader; he promoted agriculture and established compulsory education In 1775, he founded a Gymnasium roughly equivalent to the American high school as well as a Latin school in the "Old Castle", and contributed to the reduction of churchly holidays despite resistance from the population He was considered to be tolerant towards Protestants and Jews

His need for representation led to the establishment of the Collegiate church in Hechingen In 1764, the well-renowned French architect Pierre Michel d'Ixnard was hired as the director of this construction project

Although the prince intended to always appear as a friendly father-figure for his people, he was relentless in conflicts with his subjects and was always distrustful of his potential successors On 9 April 1798, Josef died after 48 years of reigning

Because he had no male successors, the crown passed to his nephew Hermann

Issue

Josef Friedrich Wilhelm and his second wife Countess Maria Theresia of Waldburg-Zeil zu Wurzach had six children:

  • Meinrad Joseph Maria Friedrich Erbgraf von Hohenzollern-Hechingen 9 October 1751, Hechingen; † 28 September 1752, Hechingen
  • Joseph Wilhelm Franz Erbgraf von Hohenzollern-Hechingen 12 December 1752, Hechingen; † 7 July 1754, Hechingen
  • Maria Crescentia Josepha Gräfin von Hohenzollern-Hechingen 4 September 1754, Hechingen; † 29 September 1754
  • Maria Theresia Josephine Karoline Gräfin von Hohenzollern-Hechingen 3 December 1756, Hechingen; † December 1756
  • Hieronymus Joseph Karl Erbgraf von Hohenzollern-Hechingen 18 April 1758, Hechingen; † 23 June 1759, Hechingen
  • Maria Antonia Anna Gräfin von Hohenzollern-Hechingen 10 November 1760, Hechingen; † 25 July 1797, Hechingen married in 1778 to Prince Joseph zu Fürstenberg 1758-1796

Bibliography

  • Philipp Matthäus Hahn: Kurze Beschreibung einer kleinen beweglichen Welt-MACHINE, welche Sr Hochfürstl Durchlaucht dem regierenden Fürsten zu Hohenzollern Hechingen unter der DIRECTION des Pfarrers M Hahns von Onstmettingen von dem Schulmeister Schaudten daselbst verfertiget worden 1770 Gedruckt zu Constanz bey Johann Gerhard Lüdolph[1]
  • Jürgen Brüstle: Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben – Eine Biographie Marburg 2006
  • Ludwig Egler: Chronik der Stadt Hechingen 1889 S 158-167
  • Gustav Schilling: Geschichte des Hauses Hohenzollern, in genealogisch fortlaufenden Biographien aller seiner Regenten von den ältesten bis auf die neuesten Zeiten, nach Urkunden und andern authentischen Quellen F Fleischer, 1843, pp 245 ff
  • E G Johler: Geschichte, Land- und Ortskunde der souverainen teutschen Fürstenthümer Hohenzollern, Hechingen und Sigmaringen 1824, pp 58 ff Digitalisat

Notes

  1. ^ A nephew of Prince Josef Friedrich Wilhelm ordered also an astronomic machine constructed by Philipp Matthäus Hahn: Franz Joseph Reichsgraf von Thun und Hohenstein 1734 – Cf Reinhard Breymayer: Erhard Weigels Schüler Detlev Clüver und sein Einfluss auf Friedrich Christoph Oetinger 1702–1782 In: Katharina Habermann, Klaus-Dieter Herbst Hg: Erhard Weigel 1625–1699 und seine Schüler Universitätsverlag Göttingen, 2016, pp 269–323; here pp 317–322: "Nachweis einer Verbindung zwischen dem mit Mozart und Beethoven vertrauten Franz Joseph Reichsgraf von Thun und Hohenstein, dem Mechaniker Philipp Gottfried Schaudt und dem Pfarrer Philipp Matthäus Hahn Findet sich eine Spur von Hahns Theologie in Schillers Ode 'An die Freude'" According to Breymayer's statement Schiller's verses "Brüder - überm Sternenzelt/ muß ein lieber Vater wohnen" "Brothers, above the starry canopy/ There must dwell a loving Father"; Ode to Joy reflecting the poet's Philosophy of Love are a reference to Philipp Matthäus Hahn's Theology of Love – Franz Joseph Reichsgraf von Thun und Hohenstein, owner of a palace in Vienna, was husband of Maria Wilhelmina Reichsgräfin von Thun und Hohenstein née Comtessin von Uhlfeld and wife's father of Karl Alois, Prince Lichnowsky 1761–1814, both remembered for her patronage of music and his relationships with Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Ludwig van Beethoven who integrated these verses in his Symphony No 9
Josef Friedrich Wilhelm, Prince of Hohenzollern-Hechingen House of Hohenzollern-HechingenCadet branch of the House of HohenzollernBorn: 12 November 1717 Died: 9 April 1798
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Frederick Louis
Prince of Hohenzollern-Hechingen
4 June 1750 – 9 April 1798
Succeeded by
Hermann


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