Frederick IV, Elector Palatine

Frederick IV, Elector Palatine of the Rhine (March 5, 1574 – September 19, 1610), only surviving son of Louis VI, Elector Palatine and Elisabeth of Hesse, called "Frederick the Righteous" (in German, "Friedrich Der Aufrichtige"; in French "Frédéric IV le juste"). Born in Amberg, his father had died in October 1583 and Frederick came under the guardianship of his uncle John Casimir, an ardent Calvinist. The Calvinist mathematician and astronomer Bartholemaeus Pitiscus served as Frederick's tutor and later became court preacher.

In January 1592, Frederick assumed control of the government of the Palatinate upon the death of John Casimir. Frederick continued John Casimir's anti-Catholic measures and in 1608 became the head of the Protestant military alliance known as the Protestant Union.


Family and children

In 1593 he married Louise Juliana of Nassau, the daughter of William I of Orange and Charlotte de Bourbon-Monpensier. They had eight children:
# Luise Juliane (b. Heidelberg, 16 July 1594 - d. Meisenheim,28 April 1640), married in 1612 to Pfalzgraf John II, Count Palatine of Zweibrücken.
# Katharina Sofie (b. Heidelberg, 10 June 1595 - d. Köln an der Spree, 28 June 1626).
# Frederick V, Elector Palatine (b. Jagdschloß Deinschwang, 16 August 1596 - d. Mainz, 29 November 1632).
# Elisabeth Charlotte (b. Neumarkt, 19 November 1597 - d. Crossen a.O, 26 April 1660), married in 1616 to Elector George William of Brandenburg.
# Anna Eleonore (b. Heidelberg, 4 January 1599 - d. Heidelberg, 10 October 1600).
# Ludwig Wilhelm (b. Heidelberg, 5 August 1600 - d. Heidelberg, 10 October 1600).
# Moritz Christian (b. Heidelberg, 18 September 1601 - d. Heidelberg, 28 March 1605).
# Ludwig Philipp of Pfalz-Simmern-Kaiserslautern (b. Heidelberg, 23 November 1602 - d. Krossen, 6 January 1655).

In 1619, his son Frederick V, Elector Palatine accepted the crown of Bohemia, an act that initiated the Thirty Years' War, a war that proved disastrous to the Palatinate.

He died in Heidelberg.

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