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Louis Ferdinand I
German Emperor; King of Prussia
Reign 20 July 1951 - 26 September 1994 (&000000000000004300000043 years, &000000000000006800000068 days)
Coronation 20 May 1952
Successor Georg Friedrich I, German Emperor
Spouse Grand Duchess Kira of Russia
Issue
Prince Friedrich Wilhelm of Prussia
Prince Michael of Prussia
Princess Marie Cécile of Prussia
Princess Kira of Prussia
Prince Louis Ferdinand Sr of Prussia
Prince Christian-Sigismund of Prussia
Princess Xenia of Prussia
Full name
Louis Ferdinand Victor Edward Albert Michael Hubert
House House of Hohenzollern
Father Wilhelm III, German Emperor
Mother Duchess Cecilie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin
Born 9 November 1907
Marble Palace, Potsdam, German Empire
Died 26 September 1994 (age 86)
Hohenzollern Castle, Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany
Religion Lutheran

Wilhelm IV (Louis Ferdinand Victor Edward Albert Michael Hubert; born 9 November 1907 - 26 September 1994) was the 5th German Emperor and 11th King of Prussia.

Early Life and Childhood Edit

Louis Ferdinand was born on 9 November 1907 at the Hohenzollern family's private summer residence, Marmorpalais, or Marble Palace, near Potsdam, where his parents were residing until their second home, Schloss Cecilienhof, could be completed. His father was Crown Prince Wilhelm, the eldest son and heir to the German Emperor, Wilhelm II. His mother was Duchess Cecilie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin.

He was baptized by the Archbishop of Berlin on 12 March 1908. His godparents were; Wilhelm II, German Emperor, Nicholas II of Russia, Queen Alexandrine of Denmark (his maternal aunt), Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria (the heir to the Austrian Empire), Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught (his father's great-uncle) and Sophia, Queen of Greece (his paternal aunt).

Louis Ferdinand had five siblings; one elder and four younger:

  • Prince Wilhelm (4 July 1906 - 26 May 1940). He was killed fighting for the German Army in France in 1940.
  • Prince Hubertus (30 September 1909 - 8 April 1950)
  • Prince Frederick (born December 1911 - 20 April 1966)
  • Princess Alexandrine (7 April 1915 - 2 October 1980), had Down syndrome.
  • Princess Cecilie of Prussia (1917–1975).

As a younger son of the Crown Prince, there was little expectation that Louis Ferdinand would become Emperor. He was third in line to the throne after his father, Crown Prince Wilhelm and elder brother, Prince Wilhelm.

Louis Ferdinand with his brothers and sisters spent most their childhood in Langfuhr near Gdansk, where his father was the Chief of the 1st Hussar Regiment.

Education Edit

Louis Ferdinand was born sixteen months after his elder brother and given the closeness in age of the two royal brothers, they were educated together. In 1916, the Emperor appointed Baron Carl Kappus as their tutor. The two princes were given a nine-year strict programme of study, which included games and military drills as well as academic subjects including; history, geography, physics, music and religion and excelled at gymnastics; as required of a Prussian prince, he became a very good rider.

In 1920, the brothers together attended their secondary schooling at the local gymnasium and excelled at sports especially; fencing, riding, shooting, team building skills and football, he spent the next five years there until he eighteenth birthday in November 1925.

After graduating from secondary school, Louis Ferdinand went on to study; Economics, Law and Political Science at the universities of Königsberg, Munich and Bonn, he graduated in 1930. While at university, he became a member of the Corps Borussia Bonn (1926) and Corps schleifenträger of Saxo-Borussia (1928), a student organization of which his father, brothers grandfather and other members of the Prussian Royal Family were members.