Wolfgang, Count Palatine of Zweibrücken

Count Palatine of Zweibrücken
Count Palatine Wolfgang of Zweibrücken
Born(1526-09-26)26 September 1526
Died11 June 1569(1569-06-11) (aged 42)
Nexon, Haute-Vienne
Noble familyHouse of Wittelsbach
Spouse(s)Anna of Hesse
IssueCountess Palatine Christine
Philipp Ludwig of Pfalz-Neuburg
John I, Count Palatine of Zweibrücken
Countess Palatine Dorothea Agnes
Countess Palatine Elisabeth
Countess Palatine Anna
Countess Palatine Elisabeth
Otto Henry, Count Palatine of Sulzbach
Frederick, Count Palatine of Zweibrücken-Vohenstrauss-Parkstein
Barbara, Countess of Oettingen-Oettingen
Charles I, Count Palatine of Zweibrücken-Birkenfeld
Maria Elisabeth, Countess of Leiningen-Dagsburg-Hardenburg
Countess Palatine Susanna
FatherLouis II, Count Palatine of Zweibrücken
MotherElisabeth of Hesse

Count Palatine Wolfgang of Zweibrücken (German: Pfalzgraf Wolfgang von Zweibrücken; 26 September 1526 – 11 June 1569) was member of the Wittelsbach family of the Counts Palatine and Duke of Zweibrücken from 1532. With the support of his regent, his uncle Rupert (later made the Count of Veldenz), Wolfgang introduced the Reformation to Zweibrücken in 1537.

Louis II with his brother Rupert, wife Elisabeth and children (incl. Wolfgang), by Peter Gertner


He was the only son of Louis II, Count Palatine of Zweibrücken and his wife Elisabeth of Hesse, daughter of William I, Landgrave of Hesse. His father died in 1532, so the regency of Palatinate-Zweibrücken passed to Louis' younger brother Rupert until 1543. In 1557 Wolfgang received the territory of Palatinate-Neuburg in accordance with the Contract of Heidelberg. In 1548 the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V occupied his Protestant territories and reintroduced Catholic practices. Wolfgang regained his territories in 1552. Despite the Peace of Augsburg of 1555 several ecclesiastical states in Germany were secularised in 1557, a few of which Wolfgang obtained. In 1566 he served as a cavalry officer in the Turkish Wars.

In 1569 he came to the aid of French Huguenots with 14,000 mercenaries during the Third of the French Wars of Religion (his intervention was financed in part by Queen Elizabeth I of England). He invaded Burgundy, but was killed in the conflict.

He was buried in Meisenheim.


When the young Wolfgang's father died, his uncle Rupert had served as the child's regent. In 1543, when Wolfgang reached majority and took on the responsibility of office, he enacted the Marburg Contract, giving Rupert the County of Veldenz.

After his death, Wolfgang's remaining land was split among his five sons who then created three branches: Philip Louis (House of Palatinate-Neuburg), John (House of Palatinate-Zweibrücken) and Charles (House of Palatinate-Birkenfeld). Otto Henry and Frederick had no surviving sons.

The House of Palatinate-Neuburg inherited the Electorate of the Palatinate in 1685 and by its cadet branch Palatinate-Sulzbach also Bavaria in 1777. The House of Palatinate-Birkenfeld then inherited the Electorate of the Palatinate and Bavaria in 1799. The House of Palatinate-Zweibrücken contributed to the monarchy in Sweden from 1654 onwards through its cadet branch Palatinate-Zweibrücken-Kleeburg.

Family and children

He was married in 1545 to Anna of Hesse, daughter of Philip I, Landgrave of Hesse. They had the following children:


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