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Friedrich Günther, Prince of Schwarzburg (5 March 1901 - 9 November 1971) was the final head of the House of Schwarzburg and heir to the principalities of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt and Schwarzburg-Sondershausen.

Contents

Early life

He was born in Großharthau in the Kingdom of Saxony the son of Prince Sizzo of Schwarzburg (1860-1926) and his wife Princess Alexandra of Anhalt (1868-1958). Five years before his birth on April 21, 1896 his father was recognised as a dynast of the house having previously not had dynastic rights due to his parents morganatic marriage.[1] In 1909 the two Schwarzburg principalities were united in a personal union under Prince Günther of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt due to the extinction of the Sondershausen line at which point Prince Friedrich Günther became second in line to the united principality. Following the outbreak of German Revolution Prince Günther Victor abdicated on November 22, 1918 thereby ending the rule of the House of Schwarzburg.

Following the death of the last reigning prince of Schwarzburg, Günther, on April 16, 1925 Prince Friedrich Günther's father Sizzo succeeded as head of the House of Schwarzburg. A year later on March 24, 1926 Prince Friedrich Günther's father Prince Sizzo died making him the new Prince (Fürst) of Schwarzburg and head of the house.

Marriage

Prince Friedrich Günther was married on April 7, 1938 at Heinrichau (today: Henryków, Lower Silesian Voivodeship, Silesia) to Princess Sophie of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach (1911-1988), eldest daughter of William Ernest, Grand Duke of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach. The marriage would prove short lived and less than a year later on November 1, 1938 they were divorced.[2]

In 1969 Prince Friedrich Günther adopted Peter Hans Fuhrmann (born 1939).[2]

Death and succession

Following his death in 1971 in Munich the House of Schwarzburg became extinct. However the Schwarzburg principalities operated under Semi-Salic primogeniture which means that in the event of the extinction of all male dynasts, as happened with the death of Prince Friedrich Günther, females can inherit. Therefore if Semi-Salic law is applied then the current heir to the principalities of Schwarzburg is Count Friedrich Magnus of Solms-Wildenfels (born 1927) the son of Princess Marie Antoinette of Schwarzburg (1898-1984), sister of Prince Friedrich Günther.[1]

Alternatively another claimant could be Prince Philip of Stolberg-Wernigerode (born 1967). Prince Philip's claim is based on a pact made by Count Heinrich of Schwarzburg and his son whereby if his male line became extinct then Count Botho of Stolberg and the Counts of Hohenstein should share the majority of his territories with the Counts of Stolberg inheriting Kelbra and Heringen alone and not share them with the Counts of Hohenstein. With the extinction of the House of Hohenstein the house's of Schwarzburg and Stolberg renewed the pact on January 28, 1594.[1] Therefore if the pact is still valid then Prince Philip as senior male line descendant of Count Botho could be seen as the rightful heir.

References

External links

Friedrich Günther, Prince of Schwarzburg
Born: 5 March 1901 Died: 9 November 1971
Titles in pretence
Preceded by
Prince Sizzo
— TITULAR —
Prince of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt
Prince of Schwarzburg-Sondershausen

1926-1971
Reason for succession failure:
Principalities abolished in 1918
Succeeded by
Princess Marie Antoinette
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