The Duchies of Braunschweig-Calenberg (1635-1692) and Braunschweig-Lüneburg (1635-1705)
The Electorate of Hannover 1692-1714

The WELFEN DYNASTY, in the house treaty of 1635, established a federation of the various lines of the Welfen Dynasty, except for the Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel line. Since 1641 there were two lines left, the Dukes of Calenberg (seat Hannover) and of Lüneburg (seat Celle). Whenever the Duke of Lüneburg died, the Duke of Calenberg gave up that territory to the next claimant in line and assumed the position of Duke in Lüneburg. The residency of the Dukes of Calenberg was HERRENHAUSEN PALACE outside Hannover, built in 1638.
After the disastrous 30 years' war, the dukes strengthen the army, common to B.-Calenberg and B.-Lüneburg (30,000 men) and centralize the administration. They introduced absolutism. Primogeniture was introduced in 1683, putting an end to the practice of dividing the country among inheriting brothers. In 1691 a conspiracy within the Ducal family against the primogeniture statute failed. In 1692, after a combination of bribery and the threat to leave the Grand Alliance (War of the Grand Alliance, 1689-1697) the Duchy of B.-Calenberg was elevated to Electorate of Hannover; an elevation which did not receive international recognition until 1708.
In 1689 the line of the Dukes of Sachsen-Lauenburg extinguished, and Lüneburg acquired the Duchy of Lauenburg, contested by Denmark (Lauenburg Succession Conflict, 1689-1693).
Duke Johann Friedrich of B.-Calenberg (1665-1679) converted to Catholicism, but respected the Lutheran belief of his people. He called Gotthold Wilhelm Leibniz to Hannover.
In 1705 the Duchies of Calenberg and Lüneburg were united, forming the Electorate of Hannover.

Dukes of Calenberg
Dukes of Lüneburg
Christian Ludwig (1641-1648)
Georg Wilhelm (1648-1665)
Johann Friedrich (1665-1679)
Ernst August (1679-1698)
Fruiedrich (1641-1648)
Christian Ludwig (1648-1655)
Johann Friedrich (1665)
Georg Wilhelm (1665-1705)

Article Hanover, from Catholic Encyclopedia 1910 edition
Schloss Herrenhausen, from Homepage der Welfen
DOCUMENTS List of Dukes, from World Statesmen by Ben Cahoon; from Regnal Chronologies (scroll down for 'Brunswick'-Calenberg-Göttingen, -Celle, -Lüneburg
REFERENCE Territorien-Ploetz : Geschichte der Deutschen Länder, Vol.1, Würzburg 1964, pp.367-369
Coins of Braunschweig-Lüneburg-Calenberg, 1601-1700, in Krause, Mishler, Standard Catalog of World Coins : Seventeenth Century 1601-1700, 2nd ed., 2000, pp.357-377; pp.377-384 Braunschweig-Lüneburg-Celle; pp.397-398 B.-L.-C.-Hannover
Coins of Braunschweig-Lüneburg-Celle, 1701-1800, in : Krause, Mishler Standard Catalog of World Coins : Eighteenth Century 1701-1800, 2nd ed., 1887, pp.288-289; pp.289-308 Braunschweig-Lüneburg-Calenberg-Hannover
Selma Stern, The Court Jew, A Contribution to the History of Absolutism in Europe, NY (1950) : Transaction Books 1985, especially pp.64-72 (on Leffmann Behrens)

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First posted on January 3rd 2002, last revised on November 12th 2004

Click here to go Home
Click here to go to Information about KMLA, WHKMLA, the author and webmaster
Click here to go to Statistics

Impressum · Datenschutz