In March 1193, Richard the Lionheart was captured on his way back from the Third Crusade. The English King was arrested by Leopold V, Duke of Austria, and soon imprisoned by Kaiser Heinrich VI at Trifels Castle in the Palatinate region of southwestern Germany. The arrest was revenge for Richard’s support of a massive conspiracy against the German… Continue reading German Emperor Heinrich VI arrested Richard the Lionheart, King of England and held him for ransom
A great many historical leaders came from a small region in southwestern Germany. They include the Hohenstaufen dynasty, the Hapsburg dynasty, the Hohenzollern dynasty, and the Welf dynasty. All of these important families originated in Swabia, or Schwaben, a region in Germany that was located in what is now part of the states of Baden-Württemberg and part of Bavaria. Swabia was the home of the Hohenstaufen dynasty, which included Germany’s most celebrated medieval… Continue reading The Hohenstaufen, Hohenzollern, Hapsburg and Welf dynasties originated in the German region of Swabia
This image is an excerpt from a magnificent piece of art that is 177 feet long…commissioned in 1512 and still unfinished by 1519, when its benefactor died. The project was entitled: Triumphs of Maximilian, also referred to as the Triumphal Procession of Maximilian I. The composite image was printed from over 130 separate wood blocks… Continue reading Triumphs of Maximilian, 1519…one of the largest prints ever produced
The single headed German eagle adopted in AD 800 was used for 640 years...this example is the Teutonic Knights Grandmaster symbol inaugurated in 1198...it consists of the German black crusader cross plus the German eagle that was gifted by the Kaiser. At the tips of the cross are 4 Fleur de Lis symbols gifted by… Continue reading German Eagles…single head 640 years, double-headed 366 years, then single head ever since 1871.
This regal portrait of a man who lived 1200 years ago was painted in 1512 by Albrecht Dürer...it is a representation of what he thought his subject, Karl der Grosse (Charlemagne), may have looked like at age 58 in the year 800. It was known that Karl was slim and very tall...6' 0" versus 5'… Continue reading Karl der Grosse, Charlemagne, was crowned on 25 December 800…All future German Holy Roman Emperors and all French Kings considered themselves to be descendants of his Empire.
Try to imagine what it was like to be 6 years old and declared King of the Germans, a powerful medieval nation. This actually happened in 1056 in Aachen Cathedral, when Heinrich IV was crowned King of the Romans, the medieval official title for King of the Germans. If you think a 6 year old… Continue reading Heinrich was six years old when he was declared King of the Germans and Holy Roman Emperor in 1056…his drama was just beginning
The First German Empire lasted 1000 years. It was established in 800 AD, was reconfirmed in 962 AD and dissolved in 1806. Officially it was known as the Holy Roman Empire. Karl der Grosse Charlemagne, King of the Germanic Franks and first Holy Roman Emperor, crowned in 800AD...as painted by Albrecht Dürer . After the death… Continue reading The First Reich, or first German Empire, lasted 1000 years, succeeded by the Second Reich in 1871
Another interesting aspect of German history is the long running connection with Italy. For example, there is a statue of German Kaiser Friedrich II …who lived in the 13th century…still being honored today in Naples, Italy. The image posted here, painted by Arthur von Ramberg, portrays this Kaiser at his court in Palermo, Italy. If… Continue reading Another interesting aspect of German history is the long running connection with Italy.