Louis I, Count of Löwenstein

Louis I, Count of Löwenstein

Louis I, Count of Löwenstein, painted by Hans Baldung, 1513
Spouse(s) Elisabeth of Montfort
Sophia Böcklin
Noble family Lowenstein-Wertheim
Father Frederick I, Elector Palatine
Mother Clara Tott
Born (1463-09-29)29 September 1463
Died 28 March 1523(1523-03-28) (aged 59)

Louis I, Count of Löwenstein (29 September 1463 in Heidelberg – 28 March 1523 in Löwenstein) was the founder of the House of Lowenstein-Wertheim.


Louis was a son of the Elector Palatine Frederick I (1425-1476) from his morganatic marriage with Clara Tott. She had been a lady-in-waiting at the court of the Duke of Bavaria in Münich where Frederick met her in 1459. She bore him two sons, Louis and his elder brother Frederick (1461-1474).

In 1451, Frederick I had adopted his nephew Philip as his son and heir. At the time, he had promised he would not marry himself, so as not to create rival heirs. However, at some point in time, Philip absolved his uncle from this promise and Frederick had secretly married Clara. Frederick continued to support Philip as his heir, and in return Philip promised to provide for Frederick's sons. Philip donated the Lordship of Scharfeneck to Louis, and in 1488, he gave Louis the County of Löwenstein. In 1492, Louis acquired the Lordship of Abstatt, including Wildeck Castle. On 24 February 1484, he was elevated to Imperial Count by Maximilian I, who was King of the Germans at the time.

Louis I is considered the founder of the House of Löwenstein-Wertheim. Two branches of this house exist until this day: the Protestant princes of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Freudenberg and the Catholic princes of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg.

Marriages and issue

Louis I married twice. His first wife was Elisabeth of Montfort (d. 13 January 1503), whom he married in 1488. They had ten children:

His second wife was Sophia Böcklin (d. 1510). This marriage remained childless.


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