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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Heraldic crown of a landgrave
Heraldic crown of a landgrave

Landgrave (Dutch: landgraaf, German: Landgraf; Swedish: lantgreve, French: landgrave; Latin: comes magnus, comes patriae, comes provinciae, comes terrae, comes principalis, lantgravius) was a noble title used in the Holy Roman Empire, and later on in its former territories. The German titles of Landgraf, Markgraf ("margrave"), and Pfalzgraf ("count palatine") are in the same class of ranks as Herzog ("duke") and above the rank of a Graf ("count").

Etymology

The English word landgrave is the equivalent of the German Landgraf, a compound of the words Land and Graf (German: count).

Description

The title referred originally to a count who had imperial immediacy, or feudal duty owed directly to the Holy Roman Emperor. His jurisdiction stretched over a sometimes quite considerable territory, which was not subservient to an intermediate power, such as a Duke, a Bishop or Count Palatine. The title survived from the times of the Holy Roman Empire (first records in Lower Lotharingia from 1086 on: Henry III, Count of Louvain, as landgrave of Brabant). By definition, a landgrave exercised sovereign rights. His decision-making power was comparable to that of a Duke.

Landgrave occasionally continued in use as the subsidiary title of such noblemen as the Grand Duke of Saxe-Weimar, who functioned as the Landgrave of Thuringia in the first decade of the 20th century, but the title fell into disuse after World War II.

The jurisdiction of a landgrave was a landgraviate (German: Landgrafschaft), and the wife of a landgrave or a female landgrave was known as a landgravine (from the German Landgräfin, Gräfin being the feminine form of Graf)

The term was also used in what are now North and South Carolina in United States during British rule. A "landgrave" was "a county nobleman in the British, privately held North American colony Carolina, ranking just below the proprietary (chartered equivalent of a royal vassal)."[1]

Examples

Examples include:

Related terms

  • Landgraviate – the rank, office, or territory held by a landgrave
  • Landgravine (German: Landgräfin) – the wife of a Landgrave or one who exercises the office or holds the rank in her own right.

References

  1. ^ Wiktionary definition
  2. ^ Wise, L., Hansen, M., Egan, E. (2005), Kings, Rules and Satesmen, revised edition, New York, p. 122

Further reading

External links

  • The dictionary definition of landgrave at Wiktionary
This page was last edited on 17 September 2018, at 02:20
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