Duchy of Lorraine

From Academic Kids

The Duchy of Lorraine was an independent state for most of the period of time between 843 to 1739. The Duchy, as well as the modern region of Lorraine, was the focus of centuries of dispute between France and Germany.

Missing image
Coat of Arms of Lorraine, adopted after the disappearance of Lower Lorraine after ca. 1180.

In the early period, Lorraine was known as Kingdom of Lotharingia, ruled by members of the Carolingian French dynasty. In 959, Lorraine was divided into the Upper and Lower region by Duke Bruno. The Dukes of Lower Lorraine abandoned this style in favour of Duke of Brabant. The Upper Lorraine part was thereafter known simply as Lorraine and its rulers are listed below.

The House of Guise, which played an important role in the Wars of Religion of the 16th century, is a junior branch of the House of Lorraine.

In the 17th century, the French kings began to covet Lorraine, which lay between France proper and its possessions in Alsace. Lorraine, after siding with the Emperor in the Thirty Years War, was largely occupied by the French in 1641. In 1670, the French invaded again, forcing Duke Charles III to flee to a Viennese exile. The French continued to occupy Lorraine for almost thirty years, only giving it up to Charles's heir by the Treaty of Ryswick which ended the Nine Years War in 1697. The Duchy was again occupied during the War of the Spanish Succession, although Duke Leopold Joseph continued to reign. Leopold's son and successor, Francis Stephen, was forced to give up the Duchy in 1737, after the War of the Polish Succession, in exchange for the Grand Duchy of Tuscany. Francis Stephen was betrother to Archduchess Maria Theresa, daughter and heir to Charles VI, and the French would only approve the marriage if Francis gave up his rights to Lorraine. Francis and Maria Theresa's marriage resulted in the House of Habsburg-Lorraine. Replacing Francis Stephen in Lunéville was the last Duke of Lorraine, Stanislaus Leszczynski, former king of Poland, Louis's son-in-law, with the understanding that it would revert to the French crown upon his death. With Stanislas's death in 1766, the long independent history of the Duchy of Lorraine came to an end, and the Duchy was annexed to France.


Kings of Lotharingia

Dukes of Lorraine

First rulers

  • Reginald I (r. 900-911) styled Duke of Lotharingia
  • Giselbert (r. 924 – 939) styled Duke of Lotharingia
  • Henry I (r. 939 – 944)
  • Conrad, the Red (r. 944 – 953)
  • Bruno (r. 953 – 959), also Archbishop of Köln
  • Friedrich I (r. 959 – 978)
  • Thierry I (r. 978 – 1027)
  • Friedrich II (r. 1027 – 1033)
  • Gothelo, the Great (r. 1033 – 1044)
  • Godfrey, the Bearded (r. 1044 – 1046)

House of Ardennes (Metz)

House of Anjou

House of Vaudemont

Junior branch of the previous rulers of Ardennes-Metz

House of Leszczyński

See also

External links

fr:Duché de Lorraine pt:Ducado da Lorena


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