William IV, Grand Duke of Luxembourg

William IV
Grand Duke of Luxembourg
Reign 17 November 1905 –
25 February 1912
Predecessor Adolphe
Successor Marie-Adélaïde
Regent Marie Anne of Portugal
Born (1852-04-22)22 April 1852
Biebrich Palace, Wiesbaden
Died 25 February 1912(1912-02-25) (aged 59)
Berg Castle, Colmar-Berg
Burial Schlosskirche ("Castle Church") in Weilburg since 1953
Spouse Marie Anne of Portugal
Issue Marie-Adélaïde, Grand Duchess of Luxembourg
Charlotte, Grand Duchess of Luxembourg
Hilda, Princess of Schwarzenberg
Antonia, Crown Princess of Bavaria
Elisabeth, Princess Ludwig Philipp of Thurn and Taxis
Sophie, Princess Ernst Heinrich of Saxony
House Nassau-Weilburg
Father Adolphe, Grand Duke of Luxembourg
Mother Princess Adelheid-Marie of Anhalt-Dessau

William IV (22 April 1852 – 25 February 1912) reigned as the sovereign Grand Duke of Luxembourg from 17 November 1905 until his death. He succeeded his father, Adolphe, Grand Duke of Luxembourg. He also held the title of Duke of Nassau, although that was annexed by Prussia after the Austro-Prussian war of 1866.[1]

William IV was a Protestant, the religion of the House of Nassau. He married Princess Marie Anne of Portugal, believing that a Roman Catholic country ought to have a Roman Catholic monarch. Thus since William IV all other Grand Dukes have been Catholic.

At the death of his uncle, Prince Nikolaus-Wilhelm in 1905, the only other legitimate male in the House of Nassau-Weilburg was William's cousin, Georg Nikolaus, Count of Merenberg, the product of a morganatic marriage. So in 1907, William declared the Counts of Merenberg non-dynastic, naming his own eldest daughter Marie-Adélaïde (1894–1924) as heir presumptive to the grand ducal throne. She became Luxembourg's first reigning grand duchess upon her father's death in 1912, and upon her own abdication in 1919, was succeeded by her younger sister Charlotte (1896–1985). Charlotte's descendants have reigned until the present day.

He was the last monarch of Luxembourg to die whilst still on the throne.


On 21 June 1893 in Fischhorn Castle, Zell am See, he married Infanta Marie Anne of Portugal, daughter of the deposed king Miguel I of Portugal and Adelaide of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg. The couple had six daughters:

Titles and honours

National honours
Foreign honours


Notes and references

  1. Almanach de Gotha (1901), article "Luxembourg"
  2. Theroff, Paul. "Princely House of Schwarzenberg". www.angelfire.com/realm/gotha/ (Paul Theroff’s Royal Genealogy Site). []
  3. Theroff, Paul. "Princely House of Thurn and Taxis". www.angelfire.com/realm/gotha/ (Paul Theroff’s Royal Genealogy Site). []
  4. Theroff, Paul. "Royal House of Saxony". www.angelfire.com/realm/gotha/ (Paul Theroff’s Royal Genealogy Site). []
  5. It was customary for a reigning Duke, his heir apparent, and their spouses to use the style of Highness.
  6. 1 2 It was customary for a reigning Grand Duke, his heir apparent, and their spouses to use the style of Royal Highness
William IV, Grand Duke of Luxembourg
Cadet branch of the House of Nassau
Born: 12 April 1852 Died: 25 February 1912
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Grand Duke of Luxembourg
Succeeded by
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