William III

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Willem Alexander Paul Frederik Lodewijk, Пауль Фредерик Лодевейк Vilhelms, Villems III, Willem III, Wilhelm III, Guillaume III,
Duke, King
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William III  was King of the Netherlands and Grand Duke of Luxembourg from 1849 until his death in 1890. He was also the Duke of Limburg from 1849 until the abolition of the duchy in 1866.

William was the son of King William II and Anna Pavlovna of Russia.

On the abdication of his grandfather William I in 1840, he became the Prince of Orange.

On the death of his father in 1849, he succeeded as King of the Netherlands.

William married his cousin Sophie of Württemberg in 1839 and they had three sons, William, Maurice, and Alexander, all of whom predeceased him.

He married Emma of Waldeck and Pyrmont in 1879 and they had one daughter Wilhelmina, who succeeded William to the Dutch throne. William III was the last male monarch of the Netherlands until the accession of King William-Alexander on the 30th of April 2013.

William was born on 19 February 1817 in Brussels as son of King William II and Queen Anna Paulowna. In his early years, he served in the military.

He married his first cousin, Sophie, daughter of King William I of Württemberg and Grand Duchess Catherine Pavlovna of Russia, in Stuttgart on 18 June 1839.

This marriage was unhappy and was characterized by struggles about their children. Sophie was a liberal intellectual, hating everything leaning toward dictatorship, such as the army. William was simpler, more conservative, and loved the military.

He prohibited intellectual exercise at home, for which action Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom, who corresponded with Sophie, called him an uneducated farmer. (His extramarital enthusiasms, however, led the New York Times to call him "the greatest debauchee of the age"]) Another cause of marital tension (and later political tension) was his capriciousness; he could rage against someone one day, and be extremely polite the next.

William loathed the 1848 constitutional changes initiated by his father (William II) and Johan Rudolf Thorbecke. William II and Sophie saw them as key to the monarchy's survival in changing times. William himself saw them as useless limitations of royal power, and would have wished to govern like his grandfather, William I.

He considered relinquishing his right to the throne to his younger brother Henry and later to his older son. His mother convinced him to cancel this action. One year later (1849) William became King upon the death of his father.

King William III repeatedly contemplated abdicating as soon as his eldest son William, Prince of Orange, turned eighteen. This occurred in 1858, but as William was uncomfortable making a decision he remained king. His first act was the inauguration of the parliamentary cabinet of Thorbecke, the liberal designer of the 1848 constitution, whom William loathed.

When the Roman Catholic hierarchy of bishops was restored in 1853 he found growing conservative support and a reason to dismiss his rival. In the first two decades of his reign, he dismissed several cabinets and disbanded the States-General several times, installing royal cabinets which ruled as long as there was support in the elected second chamber of parliament.

In 1856, William unilaterally instituted a new, reactionary constitution for Luxembourg in what has become known as the 'Coup of 1856'.[3] He tried to sell his privately held grand duchy (Nassau) in 1867, leading to the Luxembourg Crisis, which almost precipitated war between Prussia and France. However, the subsequent Second Treaty of London reestablished Luxembourg as a fully independent country.

During his reign, the King became more and more unpopular with his bourgeois-liberal subjects – his whims provoking their resistance and mockery, but remained quite popular with the common man.[4][5]

He was the 963rd Knight of the Order of the Golden Fleece in Spain in 1842, the 777th Knight of the Order of the Garter in 1882 and the 72nd Grand Cross of the Order of the Tower and Sword.

In 1877, Queen Sophie died and years of war in the palace came to an end. In the same year, King William announced his intention to marry Eleonore d'Ambre, a French opera singer, whom he ennobled as countess d'Ambroise – without government consent. Under pressure from society and the government, he abandoned these marriage plans.[6][7] In 1879, King William firstly proposed to his niece, the princess Elisabeth of Saxe-Weimar, but finaly decided to marry Princess Emma of Waldeck and Pyrmont, a small German principality. Some politicians were quite angry, as she was 41 years the king's junior. Emma showed herself, however, as a cordial woman; and when William asked permission from parliament, this was easily granted and the couple were quickly married in Arolsen on 7 January 1879. She was not his first choice. He had previously been considering her older sister, Princess Pauline of Waldeck and Pyrmont, as well as Princess Thyra of Denmark, who had her own private scandalous history.

Emma had a relieving influence on William's capricious personality and the marriage was extremely happy. The last decade was without any doubt the best of his reign.[citation needed] In 1880, Wilhelmina was born. She became heiress presumptive in 1884 after the death of the last remaining son from William's first marriage. Many potential male heirs had died between 1878 and 1884.

King William became seriously ill in 1887. However in 1888, he managed to personally hand over a gold medal of honour to the lifeboat hero Dorus Rijkers, for saving the lives of 20 people.

He died in Het Loo in 1890. Because Wilhelmina had not yet reached adulthood, Emma became regent for her daughter. She would remain regent until Wilhelmina's eighteenth birthday in 1898.

Because the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg could only be inherited through the male Nassau line under the terms of the house-treaty of the House of Nassau, it went to William's 17th cousin once removed (and incidentally Emma's uncle on her mother's side), Adolphe, the Duke of Nassau. His branch of the House of Nassau still governs the Grand Duchy.


Of William III's legitimate children, three reached adulthood, two sons from his marriage to Queen Sophie and one daughter from his marriage to Queen Emma:

  • Willem Nicolaas Alexander Frederik Karel Hendrik (1840–1879). Heir apparent to the Throne from 1849 till his death.
  • Willem Frederik Maurits Alexander Hendrik Karel (1843–1850).
  • Willem Alexander Karel Hendrik Frederik (1851–1884). Heir-apparent to the Throne from 1879 till his death.
  • Wilhelmina Helena Pauline Maria (1880–1962). Queen of the Netherlands from 1890 to 1948.


Royal Monogram
  • His Royal Highness Prince William of the Netherlands, Prince of Orange-Nassau (1817–1840)
  • His Royal Highness The Prince of Orange, Prince of the Netherlands, Prince of Orange-Nassau (1840–1849)
  • His Majesty The King of the Netherlands, Grand Duke of Luxembourg, Duke of Limburg (1849–1890)

Source: wikipedia.org

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        Relation nameRelation typeBirth DateDeath dateDescription
        1Виллем IIВиллем IIFather06.12.179217.03.1849
        2Anna PavlovnaAnna PavlovnaMother18.01.179501.03.1865
        3Wilhelmina Queen of the NetherlandsWilhelmina Queen of the NetherlandsDaughter31.08.188028.11.1962
        4Sophie Of the NetherlandsSophie Of the NetherlandsSister08.04.182423.03.1897
        5Alexander  Württemberg, DukeAlexander Württemberg, DukeUncle09.09.180404.07.1885
        6Константин ПавловичКонстантин ПавловичUncle27.04.177915.06.1831
        7Alexander I of RussiaAlexander I of RussiaUncle12.12.177719.11.1825
        8Nicholas I of RussiaNicholas I of RussiaUncle06.07.179618.02.1855
        9Михаил ПавловичМихаил ПавловичUncle08.02.179828.08.1849
        10Maria  PavlovnaMaria PavlovnaAunt04.02.178611.06.1859
        11Екатерина ПавловнаЕкатерина ПавловнаAunt10.05.178809.01.1819
        12Елена  ПавловнаЕлена ПавловнаAunt17.12.178424.09.1803
        13Nicholas  MikhailovichNicholas MikhailovichNephew14.04.185930.01.1919
        14Paul  AlexandrovichPaul AlexandrovichNephew03.10.186030.01.1919
        15Alexander IIIAlexander IIINephew10.03.184501.11.1894
        16Мориц Саксен-АльтенбургскийМориц Саксен-АльтенбургскийNephew24.10.182913.05.1907
        17Георгий Мекленбург-СтрелицкийГеоргий Мекленбург-СтрелицкийNephew25.05.185905.12.1909
        18Дмитрий Константинович РомановДмитрий Константинович РомановNephew01.06.186030.01.1919
        19Сергей  РомановСергей РомановNephew11.05.185717.02.1905
        20Принц Николай ПетровичПринц Николай ПетровичNephew09.05.184020.01.1886
        21Алексей МихайловичАлексей МихайловичNephew28.12.187502.03.1895
        22Принц Александр  ОльденбургскийПринц Александр ОльденбургскийNephew02.06.184406.09.1932
        23Gabriel RomanovGabriel RomanovNephew15.07.188728.02.1955
        24Grand Duke Alexander MikhailovichGrand Duke Alexander MikhailovichNephew13.04.186626.02.1933
        25Duke Constantine  Petrovich of OldenburgDuke Constantine Petrovich of OldenburgNephew09.05.185018.03.1906
        26Igor  ConstantinovichIgor ConstantinovichNephew29.05.189418.07.1918
        27Oleg  KonstantinovichOleg KonstantinovichNephew15.11.189229.09.1914
        28Евгений Лейхтенбергский РомановскийЕвгений Лейхтенбергский РомановскийNephew27.01.184718.08.1901
        29Georgy  KonstantinovichGeorgy KonstantinovichNephew23.04.190307.11.1938
        30Константин КонстантиновичКонстантин КонстантиновичNephew10.08.185802.06.1915
        31Николай КонстантиновичНиколай КонстантиновичNephew14.02.185027.01.1918
        32Великий князь Пётр НиколаевичВеликий князь Пётр НиколаевичNephew10.01.186417.06.1931
        33князь Георгий Максимилианович Романовскийкнязь Георгий Максимилианович РомановскийNephew29.02.185203.05.1912
        34Владимир АлександровичВладимир АлександровичNephew10.04.184704.02.1909
        35Grand Duke Nicholas  Nikolaevich of RussiaGrand Duke Nicholas Nikolaevich of RussiaNephew18.11.185605.01.1929
        36Великий Князь Георгий МихайловичВеликий Князь Георгий МихайловичNephew23.08.186330.01.1919
        37Сергей МихайловичСергей МихайловичNephew25.09.186918.07.1918
        38Великий князь Сергей МихайловичВеликий князь Сергей МихайловичNephew07.10.186918.07.1918
        39Сергей АлександровичСергей АлександровичNephew11.05.185717.02.1905
        40Prince Ioann  Konstantinovich of RussiaPrince Ioann Konstantinovich of RussiaNephew05.07.188618.07.1918
        41Михаил Михайлович, Великий князьМихаил Михайлович, Великий князьNephew16.10.186126.04.1929
        42Olga  Constantinovna of RussiaOlga Constantinovna of RussiaNiece03.09.185118.06.1926
        43Анастасия МихайловнаАнастасия МихайловнаNiece28.07.186011.03.1922
        44Duchess Alexandra  Petrovna of OldenburgDuchess Alexandra Petrovna of OldenburgNiece02.06.183825.04.1900
        45Maria AlexandrovnaMaria AlexandrovnaNiece17.10.185324.10.1920
        46Тереза ОльденбургскаяТереза ОльденбургскаяNiece30.03.185219.04.1883
        47Вера КонстантиновнаВера КонстантиновнаNiece24.04.190611.01.2001
        48Princess LouisePrincess LouiseNiece03.12.183823.04.1923
        49Prince Bernhard  of the NetherlandsPrince Bernhard of the NetherlandsSon in-law29.06.191101.12.2004
        50Paul IPaul IGrandfather01.10.175423.03.1801
        51Maria FeodorovnaMaria FeodorovnaGrandmother14.10.175924.10.1828
        52Juliana of the NetherlandsJuliana of the NetherlandsGranddaughter30.04.190920.03.2004
        53Frederick II Eugene Württemberg, DukeFrederick II Eugene Württemberg, DukeGreat grandfather21.01.173223.12.1797
        54Peter IIIPeter IIIGreat grandfather21.02.172817.07.1762
        55Stanisław PoniatowskiStanisław PoniatowskiGreat grandfather17.01.173212.02.1798
        56Catherine the  GreatCatherine the GreatGreat grandmother02.05.172917.11.1796
        57Princess Christina of the  NetherlandsPrincess Christina of the NetherlandsGreat granddaughter18.02.194716.08.2019
        58Alexander IIAlexander IICousin29.04.181813.03.1881
        59Николай СтаршийНиколай СтаршийCousin27.07.183113.04.1891
        60Konstantin NikolayevichKonstantin NikolayevichCousin21.09.182725.01.1892
        61Karl Alexander August JohannKarl Alexander August JohannCousin24.06.181805.01.1901
        62Duke Peter  Georgievich of OldenburgDuke Peter Georgievich of OldenburgCousin26.08.181214.05.1881
        63Михаил НиколаевичМихаил НиколаевичCousin25.10.183218.12.1909
        64Grand Duchess Maria  Nikolaevna of RussiaGrand Duchess Maria Nikolaevna of RussiaCousin18.08.181921.02.1876
        65Marie Luise Augusta KatharineMarie Luise Augusta KatharineCousin30.09.181107.01.1890
        66Olga  NikolaevnaOlga NikolaevnaCousin11.09.182230.10.1892
        67Екатерина МихайловнаЕкатерина МихайловнаCousin16.08.182730.04.1894
        Paul Alexander Karl Constantin Frederick AugustCousin25.09.180510.04.1806
        69Marie Luise AlexandrineMarie Luise AlexandrineCousin03.02.180818.01.1877
        70Gustaw EhrenbergGustaw EhrenbergCousin14.02.181828.09.1895
        71Francis Paul Charles Louis Alexander Teck, DukeFrancis Paul Charles Louis Alexander Teck, DukeCousin28.08.183721.01.1900

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