Otto Henry, Elector Palatine

Otto-Henry, Elector Palatine

Georg Pencz: Portrait of Prince-elector Otto Henry
Spouse(s) Susanna of Bavaria
Noble family House of Wittelsbach
Father Ruprecht of the Palatinate
Mother Elisabeth of Bavaria-Landshut
Born (1502-04-10)10 April 1502
Died 12 February 1559(1559-02-12) (aged 56)

Otto-Henry, Elector Palatine, (German: Ottheinrich; 10 April 1502, Amberg[1] 12 February 1559, Heidelberg)[2] a member of the Wittelsbach dynasty was Count Palatine of Palatinate-Neuburg from 1505 to 1559 and prince elector of the Palatinate from 1556 to 1559. He was a son of Rupert, Count Palatine, third son of Philip, Elector Palatine; and of Elizabeth of Bavaria-Landshut, daughter of George of Bavaria.


As grandson of George of Bavaria, the young Otto Henry became regent of the new duchy of Palatinate-Neuburg after the Palatinate had lost the Landshut War of Succession against Albert IV, Duke of Bavaria. Otto Henry ordered to upgrade the Neuburg Castle, patronised the arts[3] and was involved in several conflicts, due to his expensive holding of court a huge burden of debts caused his bankruptcy until he inherited the Electoral Palatinate in 1556. In the 1550s Otto Henry established the Bibliotheca Palatina.

In September 1546 Neuburg was occupied by the troops of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor as Otto Henry had supported the Schmalkaldic League. In 1552 in occasion of the Peace of Passau Otto Henry could return to Neuburg. As Elector from 1556 he then re-introduced the Protestant Reformation.

Otto Henry married Susanna of Bavaria (1502–43), daughter of Albert IV, Duke of Bavaria, on October 16, 1529 in Neuburg an der Donau.[2] He was her second husband after Casimir, Margrave of Brandenburg-Bayreuth. They had no children, but Susanna brought five of her eleven children to the marriage. She left him a widower 14 years later in 1543.[4]

Otto Henry died in Heidelberg in 1559. He is buried in the Heiliggeistkirche in Heidelberg.[2]



  1. Andreas Edel, "Ottheinrich," in Neue Deutsche Biographie 19:655.
  2. 1 2 3 Schreiber, KH. "Otto Heinrich". Genealogie Mittelalter (in German). self. Retrieved 2009-10-22.
  3. This included commissioning the lavishly illuminated 16th century Otthenreich Bible. Forbes, Andrew ; Henley, David (2012). Apocalypse: The Illustrated Book of Revelation (with illuminated illustrations from the Otthenreich Bible). Chiang Mai: Cognoscenti Books. ASIN: B008WAK9SS.
  4. "Der Fürst". Die Reise des Pfalzgrafen Ottheinrich 1536/1537 (in German). Universitätsbibliothek Würzburg. Retrieved 2009-10-20.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Ottheinrich.
Otto Henry, Elector Palatine
Born: 1502 Died: 1559
Regnal titles
New title Count Palatine of Neuburg
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Frederick II
Elector Palatine
Succeeded by
Frederick III
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