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List of administrators, archbishops, bishops, and prince-archbishops of Bremen

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This list records the bishops of the Roman Catholic diocese of Bremen German: Bistum Bremen, supposedly a suffragan of the Archbishopric of Cologne, then of the bishops of Bremen, who were in personal union archbishops of Hamburg simply titled Archbishops of Hamburg-Bremen, later simply titled archbishops of Bremen, since 1180 simultaneously officiating as rulers of princely rank prince-archbishop in the Prince-Archbishopric of Bremen German: Erzstift Bremen; est 1180 and secularised in 1648, a state of imperial immediacy within the Holy Roman Empire Bremen and Hamburg were the seats of the chapters at Bremen Cathedral and Hamburg Concathedral, while the incumbents used to reside in their castle in Vörde since 1219

Coat-of-arms of the Prince-Archbishopric of Bremen

Contents

  • 1 Titles of the incumbents of the Bremian See
  • 2 Catholic Bishops of Bremen till 845
  • 3 Catholic Archbishops of Hamburg in personal union Bishops of Bremen 848–1072
  • 4 Catholic Archbishops of Bremen 1072–1179
  • 5 Catholic Prince-Archbishops of Bremen 1180–1316
  • 6 Catholic Administrators 1316–1327; 1345–1362 and Prince-Archbishops of Bremen 1327–1348
  • 7 Catholic Prince-Archbishops and Administrator of Bremen 1348–1496
  • 8 Catholic Prince-Archbishops of Bremen 1497–1568
  • 9 Lutheran Administrators of the Prince-Archbishopric of Bremen 1568–1645
  • 10 Roman Catholic Administrators and Vicars Apostolic, 1635/1645–Secularisation

Titles of the incumbents of the Bremian Seeedit

Not all incumbents of the Bremian See were imperially invested princely power as Prince-Archbishops and not all were papally confirmed as bishops In 1180 part of the Bremian diocesan territory and small parts of the neighbouring Diocese of Verden were disentangled from the Duchy of Saxony and became an own territory of imperial immediacy called Prince-Archbishopric of Bremen German: Erzstift Bremen, a vassal of the Holy Roman Empire The prince-archbishopric was an elective monarchy, with the monarch being the respective archbishop usually elected by the Bremian Chapters at Bremen Cathedral and Hamburg Concathedral, with the latter enfranchised to three capitular votes, and confirmed by the Holy See, or exceptionally only appointed by the Holy See Papally confirmed archbishops were then invested by the emperor with the princely regalia, thus the title prince-archbishop However, sometimes the respective incumbent of the see never gained a papal confirmation, but was still invested the princely regalia Also the opposite occurred with a papally confirmed archbishop, never invested as prince A number of incumbents, elected by the chapter, neither achieved papal confirmation nor imperial investiture, but as a matter of fact nevertheless de facto held the princely power The respective incumbents of the see bore the following titles:

  • Bishop of Bremen from 787 to 845
  • Archbishop of Hamburg and Bishop of Bremen in personal union colloquially also Archbishop of Hamburg-Bremen from 848 to 1072
  • Archbishop of Bremen colloquially also Archbishop of Hamburg-Bremen from 1072 to 1179
  • Prince-Archbishop of Bremen from 1180 to 1566, paralleled by the de facto rule of Catholic Administrators from 1316 to 1327 and again 1348 to 1360
  • Administrator of the Prince-Archbishopric of Bremen 1316 to 1327, 1348 to 1360, and again 1568 to 1645 Either simply de facto replacing the Prince-Archbishop or lacking canon-law prerequisites the incumbent of the see would officially only hold the title administrator but nevertheless colloquially referred to as Prince-Archbishop Between 1568 and 1645 all administrators were Lutherans, while else they were Roman Catholics
  • The last, but only provisional incumbent of the See, Francis of Wartenberg, therefore bore the title Vicar Apostolic 1645–1648

Catholic Bishops of Bremen till 845edit

Roman Catholic Bishops of Bremen 787–845
Episcopate Picture Name Birth and death
with places
Reason for
end of office
Notes
787–789 Willehad
also Willehadus or Willihad
Northumbria
ca 745 –
8 November 789, Blexen,
today a part of Nordenham
death Saint
789–805 sede vacante
805–838 Willerich
also Willeric, Wilrich, Wilderic
unknown – 4 May 838 death
838–845 Leuderich
also Leutrich in High German
unknown – 24 August 845 death
845–847 sede vacante

Catholic Archbishops of Hamburg in personal union Bishops of Bremen 848–1072edit

Roman Catholic Archbishops of Hamburg in personal union Bishops of Bremen 848–1072
Episcopate Picture Name Birth and death
with places
Reason for
end of office
Notes
847–865 Ansgar
also Anschar in Low Saxon, Oskar in Scandinavian languages
Corbie
796 or 8 September 801 –
3 February 865
Bremen
death in personal union archbishop of Hamburg 831–865,
Apostle of the North
Saint
865–888 Rimbert of Turholt
also Rembert or Rembart
near Turholt in Flanders
830 – 11 June 888, Bremen
death second Apostle of the North
Saint
888–909 Adalgar
also Adelger
unknown – 9 May 909
Bremen
death Saint
909–916 Hoger
also Huggar
unknown – 20 December 916 death
917–918 Reginwart unknown – 1 October 918 death
918–936 Unni unknown – 17 September 936, Birka death third Apostle of the North
Saint
936–988 Adaldag
also Adelgis or Adelger
ca 900 – 28 April 988 death
988–1013 Liawizo I
also Libizo, Libentius I in Latin
Burgundy or Raetia
unknown – 4 January 1013
death Apostle of the Slavs
uncle of Liawizo II
Saint
1013–1029 Unwan, Count Palatine of Saxony
also Unwin
House of Immeding
unknown – 27 January 1029
Bremen
death
1029–1032 Liawizo II
also Libentius II
unknown – 24 August 1032 death nephew of Liawizo I
1032–1035 Hermann unknown –
19 September 1035
death
1035–1043 Adalbrand of Bremen in High German
also Alebrand in Low Saxon, or Bezelin, Becelin, Bencelin
unknown – 15 April 1043 death
1043–1072 Adalbert, Count Palatine of Saxony
as Albert I
Goseck
ca 1000 –
16/25 March 1072
Goslar
death

Catholic Archbishops of Bremen 1072–1179edit

Roman Catholic Archbishops of Bremen 1072–1179
Episcopate Picture Name Birth and death
with places
Reason for
end of office
Notes
1072–1101 Liemar unknown – 16 May 1101
Bremen
death
1101–1104 Humbert, Archbishop of Bremen unknown – 10 November 1104 death During his term, the whole of Scandinavia was removed from the archdiocese of Bremen to form its own archdiocese, seated in Lund
1104–1123 Frederick I unknown –
29 January 1123
death
1123–1148 Adalbero, Archbishop of Bremen
as Adalbert II
unknown – 5 August 1148 death
1148–1168 Hartwig, Count of Stade
as Hartwig I
House of Udonids
before 1124 –
11 October 1168
Bremen
death brother of Liutgard of Stade, Queen consort of Denmark
1168, episcopate claimed Siegfried of Anhalt
House of Ascania
ca 1132 –
24 October 1184
inhibited by Guelphic partisans Archbishop Elect of Bremen, elected by the Chapter and preferred by his father Albert the Bear,
Bishop of Brandenburg 1173–1179,
became Prince-Archbishop of Bremen in 1180
1168–1178 Baldwin I
also Balduin
unknown – 18 June 1178
Bremen
dismissed by Pope Alexander III, ensued by Baldwin's death preferred candidate of Guelphic Henry III, the Lion,
imposed by Frederick I Barbarossa against the Chapter's candidate Siegfried
1178–1179 Berthold
also Bertram
unknown – 6 April 1212 dismissal never papally confirmed,
Prince-Bishop of Metz 1180–1212

Catholic Prince-Archbishops of Bremen 1180–1316edit

Roman Catholic Prince-Archbishops of Bremen 1180–1316
Reign and episcopate Picture Name Birth and death
with places
Reason for
end of office
Notes
1180–1184 Siegfried of Anhalt
House of Ascania
ca 1132 –
24 October 1184
death before bishop of Brandenburg 1173–1180
1184–1185 rule by the Chapter due to sede vacante
1185–1190 Hartwig of Uthlede
as Hartwig II, also Wilrich
unknown – 3 November 1207 dismissal deposed as prince by Henry VI,
never papally dismissed as archbishop
1190–1192 rule by the Chapter due to sede vacante Chapter disregarded Hartwig II's persisting papal acceptance as archbishop
1192 Valdemar of Denmark
also Waldemar
House of Estridsen
1157/1158 –
April 1235 or 1236
Cîteaux
held in Danish captivity 1193–1206 imprisoned by Canute VI of Denmark,
also bishop of Schleswig 1182–1208
1192–1207 Hartwig of Uthlede
as Hartwig II, also Wilrich
unknown – 3 November 1207 death de facto reaccepted by the Chapter, since Valdemar stayed imprisoned
1207–1210 Burchard, Count of Stumpenhusen
as Burchard I
resignation temporarily accepted as anti-archbishop only in Hamburg,
nephew of Gerard I
1208–1217 Valdemar of Denmark
House of Estridsen
1157/1158 –
April 1235 or 1236
Cîteaux
dismissal only in Bremen accepted as imperially invested prince, papally dismissed and banned
1210–1219 Gerard of Oldenburg-Wildeshausen
as Gerard I
House of Oldenburg
unknown – 14 August 1219 death uncle of Burchard of Stumpenhusen,
also prince-bishop of Osnabrück 1190–1216
1219–1258 Gerhard of Lippe
also Gerard II
House of Lippe
ca 1190 – 27 July or 28 August 1258
Vörde
death son of Bernard II, Lord of Lippe, titled Bishop of Hamburg in the diocesan territory right of the Elbe,
and Archbishop of Bremen left of the Elbe
1258–1273 Hildebold, Count of Wunstorf unknown –
11 October 1273
death temporarily rivalled by anti-archbishop Gerhard of Lippe, accepted only in Hamburg, a grandnephew of Gerard II and supported by his uncle Simon de, Gerard II's coadjutor
1273–1274 rule by the Chapter due to sede vacante
1274–1306 Gilbert of Brunckhorst
also Giselbert of Bronchorst
House of Bronckhorst
unknown –
18 November 1306
Vörde
death
1306–1307 Henry of Goltern
also of Golthorn,
as Henry I
unknown –
9 April 1307
death died before papal confirmation
1307, only elect Florence, Count of Brunckhorst
also Florentius, Floris, also of Bronchorst
House of Bronckhorst
unknown – 1308
Avignon
death died before papal confirmation,
counter-candidate to the next
1307, only elect Bernard of Wölpe
Counts of Wölpe
ca 1230/1240 – 17 September 1310 death never papally confirmed, counter-candidate to the former
1307–1310 rule by the Chapter due to sede vacante
1310–1316 1327 Jens Grand the Firebug
as John I,
House of Hvide
ca 1260 –
30 May 1327
Avignon
declared mentally insane by the Chapter on 19 May 1316 and dismissed,
however, in 1318 papally recognised again till his death
lacking the capitular elective mandate, only papally appointed,
before Archbishop of Lund 1289–1302,
Prince-Archbishop of Riga 1304–1310

Catholic Administrators 1316–1327; 1345–1362 and Prince-Archbishops of Bremen 1327–1348edit

Roman Catholic Administrators of Bremen 1316–1327
Reign Picture Name Birth and death
with places
Reason for
end of office
Notes
1316–1324 John of Brunswick and Lunenburg Celle line
House of Welf
before 1296 – 1324 deposed by the chapter in 1322, but in the same year papally recognised till his death son of Otto the Strict,
appointed administrator by the chapter, replacing Grand declared mentally insane
1324–1327 Nicolaus Ketelhot
also Kettelhodt or Kesselhut
unknown – 11 February 1332 ascension of Burchard II also Prince-Bishop of Verden 1312–31
serving as administrator and vicar general this as of 1322, supported by Vicar General Dietrich von Xanthen
Roman Catholic Prince-Archbishops of Bremen 1327–1348
1327–1344 Burchard Grelle
as Burchard II
unknown –
13 August 1344
death
1344–1348 Otto of Oldenburg
as Otto I
House of Oldenburg
unknown –
before 14 March 1348
death uncle of the next
Roman Catholic Administrator of Bremen 1345–1360
1345–1360/62 Maurice of Oldenburg
House of Oldenburg
unknown – 24 July 1364 or 1368
killed in action near Blexen
dismissal nephew of the former, son of John II
elected prince-archbishop by the chapters in 1348, but never papally confirmed, appointed administrator by his uncle and again by Godfrey, who appointed him also coadjutor, forced to resign in 1362 by Albert II

Catholic Prince-Archbishops and Administrator of Bremen 1348–1496edit

Roman Catholic Prince-Archbishops and Administrator of Bremen 1348–1496
Reign and episcopate Picture Name Birth and death
with places
Reason for
end of office
Notes
de jure 1348–1360, de facto never Godfrey, Count of Arnsberg
also Godfried in Low Saxon
ca 1285 –
4 December 1363
resignation lacking the capitular elective mandate, only papally confirmed as archbishop,
never gained power, de facto wielded by Administrator Maurice, also Prince-Bishop of Osnabrück 1321–1349
1360–1395 Albert of Brunswick and Lunenburg Wolfenbüttel
as Albert II
House of Welf
unknown – 14 April 1395 death lacking the capitular elective mandate,
brother of Magnus II Torquatus
1395–1406 Otto of Brunswick and Lunenburg Wolfenbüttel line
as Otto II
House of Welf
ca 1364 – 30 June 1406 death Prince-Bishop of Verden 1388–1395,
son of Magnus Torquatus
1406–1421 Johann Slamstorp
also Slamestorpe, or Schlamsdorf in High German, as John II
ca 1350/60 –
20 December 1421
death
1422–1435 Nicholas of Oldenburg-Delmenhorst
House of Oldenburg
unknown –
8 December 1447
resignation
1435–1441 Baldwin of Wenden
also Boldewin of Dahlen or Balduin, as Baldwin II
unknown –
8 July 1441
death
1442–1463 Gerard of Hoya
also Gerhard von der Hoye
as Gerard III
Counts of Hoya
unknown – 1463 death
Roman Catholic Administrator of Bremen 1463–1496
1463–1496 Henry XXVII of Schwarzburg
as Henry II
House of Schwarzburg
13 November 1440 – 24 December 1496
underways to East Frisia
death Archbishop elect, due to minority only appointed administrator, having come of age and after election and investiture as Prince-Bishop of Münster 1466–1496, where he preferently resided, he never pursued his papal appointment as archbishop any more

Catholic Prince-Archbishops of Bremen 1497–1568edit

Roman Catholic Prince-Archbishops of Bremen 1497–1568
Reign and episcopate Picture Name Birth and death
with places
Reason for
end of office
Notes
1497–1511 Johann Rode von Wale
also Johann Roden Bok, or Rhode or Rufus
as John III
ca 1445 –
4 December 1511,
Vörde
death
1511–1542/1547 Christopher the Spendthrift of Brunswick and Lunenburg Wolfenbüttel
House of Welf
1487 – 22 January 1558,
Tangermünde
de facto dismissal as prince by Chapter and Estates son of Henry IV, also Prince-Bishop of Verden 1502–1558, where he usually resided, dismissed for his prodigality by Chapter and Estates of the Prince-Archbishopric
1542/1547–1549 rule by the Chapter and the Prince-Archbishopric's Estates Emperor Charles V's threat to impose an administrator Chapter and Estates dismissed the prince-archbishop due to his prodigality
1549–1558 Christopher the Spendthrift
House of Welf
1487 – 22 January 1558,
Tangermünde
death also Prince-Bishop of Verden 1502–1558, where he usually resided,
reaccepted as prince by Chapter and Estates after Charles V threatened to install an administrator of his choice,
brother of the next
1558–1566 George of Brunswick and Lunenburg Wolfenbüttel line
House of Welf
22 November 1494 – 4 December 1566 death brother of the former, also Prince-Bishop of Verden 1558–1566
1566–1568 rule by Chapter and Estates majority of Administrator Henry III sede vacante 1566–1567, then custodianship for the minor administrator

Lutheran Administrators of the Prince-Archbishopric of Bremen 1568–1645edit

Lutheran Administrators of the Prince-Archbishopric of Bremen 1568–1645
Reign Picture Name Birth and death
with places
Reason for
end of office
Notes
1568–1585 Henry of Saxe-Lauenburg
as Henry III
House of Ascania
1 November 1550 – 22 April 1585
Vörde
death elected by the Chapter, dominated by Lutheran capitulars, imperially invested as prince, but never papally confirmed, also administrator of the prince-bishoprics of Osnabrück 1574–1585 and Paderborn 1577–1585
1585–1589 rule by Chapter and Estates majority of Administrator John Adolphus custodianship for the minor administrator
1589–1596 John Adolphus of Schleswig-Holstein-Gottorp
House of Holstein-Gottorp
27 February 1575 –
31 March 1616
Gottorp
resignation also 1st Lutheran administrator of the Prince-Bishopric of Lübeck 1586–1607, after succeeding in 1590 his father as Duke regnant the Bremian Chapter enforced his resignation in favour of his brother
1596–1634 John Frederick of Schleswig-Holstein-Gottorp
House of Holstein-Gottorp
Gottorp,
1 September 1579 –
3 September 1634, Altkloster nds
death also administrator of the Prince-Bishoprics of Lübeck 1607–1634 and Verden 1631–1634
1634–1635 rule by Chapter and Estates due to sede vacante
1635–1645 Frederick, Crown Prince of Denmark
as Frederick II
House of Oldenburg
Haderslev,
18 March 1609 – 9 February 1670,
Copenhagen
resignation by Second Peace of Brömsebro also administrator of the Prince-Bishopric of Verden 1623–1629 and again 1634–1644, expelled from both sees by the Swedes

Roman Catholic Administrators and Vicars Apostolic, 1635/1645–Secularisationedit

Roman Catholic Administrators and Vicars Apostolic, 1635/1645-Secularisation
Reign or vicariate Picture Name Birth and death
with places
Reason for
end of office
Notes
1635, papal appointment, imperial investiture, lacking the capitular elective mandate Leopold William of Austria
as Administrator Leopold William
House of Habsburg
Wiener Neustadt,
5 January 1614 – 20 November 1662,
Vienna
due to the Swedish occupation of the Prince-Archbishopric he never gained de facto power Pope Urban VIII provided him as administrator he lacked any clerical qualification to be bishop of Bremen,
his father Emperor Ferdinand II invested him with the princely regalia
also administrator of the prince-bishoprics of Halberstadt 1628–48, Olomouc 1637–62, Passau 1625–62, Strasbourg 1626–62, and Wrocław 1656–62, as well as of the Prince-Archbishopric of Magdeburg 1631–38
1645, papal appointment, lacking the capitular elective mandate Francis of Wartenberg
Vicar Apostolic Franz Wilhelm
Munich,
1 March 1593 –
1 December 1661,
Ratisbon
he never gained pastoral influence, let alone power as prince-archbishop due to the Swedish occupation of the prince-archbishopric Pope Innocent X appointed him vicar apostolic, ie provisional head of see,
also prince-bishop of Osnabrück 1625–1634 and again 1648–1661, of Ratisbon 1649–1661 and of Verden 1630–1631
1645–1648 rule by the Swedish occupants due to sede vacante
After 15 May 1648 The Prince-Archbishopric was converted into a heritable monarchy, the Duchy of Bremen, first ruled in personal union by the Swedish crown See List of Dukes of Bremen 1648–1823

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