Franz Joseph I, Prince of Liechtenstein

This article is about Franz Joseph I, Prince of Liechtenstein. For other uses, see Franz Joseph (disambiguation).
Franz Joseph I
Prince of Liechtenstein

Franz Josef I as Knight of the Austrian Golden Fleece
Reign 10 February 1772 – 18 August 1781
Predecessor Josef Wenzel I
Successor Aloys I
Born (1726-11-19)19 November 1726
Died 18 August 1781(1781-08-18) (aged 54)
Burial Church of the Nativity of the Virgin Mary, Brno
Spouse Leopoldine von Sternberg
Full name
Franz de Paula Josef Johann Nepomuk Andreas
House Liechtenstein
Father Prince Emanuel of Liechtenstein
Mother Countess Anna Antonia of Dietrichstein-Weichselstädt

Franz Joseph I, Prince of Liechtenstein, born Franz de Paula Josef Johann Nepomuk Andreas (19 November 1726 – 18 August 1781), was the Prince of Liechtenstein from 1772 until his death.


Born in Milan, in what is now northern Italy, he was the son of Prince Emanuel of Liechtenstein and Maria Anna Antonia, Countess of Dietrichstein-Weichselstädt, Baroness zu Hollenburg und Finkenstein (10 September 1706 – 7 June 1777). Franz Josef was the eldest of their thirteen children. He was a nephew of Joseph Wenzel I, whom he succeeded on 10 February 1772.

Franz Joseph had been recognised heir to Liechtenstein since 1723, when his uncle's only son had died. Joseph Wenzel took Franz Joseph under his wing and Franz Joseph accompanied him in a campaign in Northern Italy, fighting with Wenzel at the Battle of Piacenza. The battle was a victory for the Holy Roman Empire, of which Liechtenstein was a part.

He was the 802nd Knight of the Order of the Golden Fleece in Austria.

In 1763, Franz Josef traveled on behalf of the Emperor to Spain, to bring the bride of Archduke Leopold a picture of the Archduke. In 1767, he became Privy Councillor, and in 1771, he received the Order of the Golden Fleece.

Once Franz Joseph became Prince of Liechtenstein, he showed great interest in its economic problems and the ever-increasing Liechtenstein art collection. He died in Metz in 1781.

Marriage and issue

Franz Josef married Marie Leopoldine Gräfin von Sternberg (Vienna, 11 December 1733 – Feldsberg, 27 June 1809), a member of the Bohemian nobility, on 6 July 1750 in Valtice or Feldsberg. The couple had 8 children:



  1. Theroff, Paul. "Landgravial House of Hesse-Rheinfels-Rothenburg". (Paul Theroff’s Royal Genealogy Site).
  2. Theroff, Paul. "Princely and Countly House of Esterházy de Galántha". (Paul Theroff’s Royal Genealogy Site).

External links

Franz Joseph I, Prince of Liechtenstein
Born: 1726 Died: 1781
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Josef Wenzel I
Prince of Liechtenstein
Succeeded by
Aloys I
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