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Franz, Duke of Bavaria

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8 July 1996 – present

Roman Catholicism

Franz, of

House of Wittelsbach

Franz, Duke of Bavaria wwwnymphenburgcomassetsuploadsimagesherzogf

Albrecht, Duke of Bavaria

Heir presumptive
Prince Max, Duke in Bavaria

14 July 1933 (age 90) Munich, German Reich (

Albrecht, Duke of Bavaria

Countess Maria Draskovich of Trakostjan

Prince Max, Duke in Bavaria

Albrecht, Duke of Bavaria, Countess Maria Draskovich of Trakostjan

Rupprecht, Crown Prince of Bavaria

Ludwig III of Bavaria

Similar People
Prince Max - Duke in Bavaria, Ludwig III of Bavaria, Rupprecht - Crown Prince of, Prince Luitpold of Bavaria, Maximilian I Joseph of Bavaria

Franz duke of bavaria

Franz, Duke of Bavaria (German: Franz Bonaventura Adalbert Maria Herzog von Bayern; born 14 July 1933) is head of the House of Wittelsbach, the former ruling family of the Kingdom of Bavaria. His great-grandfather King Ludwig III was the last ruling monarch of Bavaria until deposed in 1918.


Franz, Duke of Bavaria Could the Duke of Bavaria be the next King of Scotland Telegraph

Franz was born in Munich. During the Second World War, the Wittelsbachs were anti-Nazi. The family initially left Nazi Germany for Hungary but were eventually arrested when Franz was aged 11. He spent time in several Nazi concentration camps, including Oranienburg and Dachau.

Franz, Duke of Bavaria Franz Duke of Bavaria Wikipedia

After the war, he was a student at the University of Munich and became a collector of modern art. Franz succeeded as head of the House of Wittelsbach, and as pretender to the Bavarian throne, on the death of his father in 1996. He lives at the Nymphenburg Palace in Munich. Franz is not married.

Franz, Duke of Bavaria Act repeal could make Franz Herzog von Bayern new King of England

Also the current heir-general of King James II of England and VII of Scotland, Franz is, as Francis II, considered – by Jacobites – to be the legitimate heir of the Stuart kings of England, Scotland, Ireland and France. A spokesman has said that the Duke generally does not comment on issues concerning his "familiar relationship" to the Royal House of Stuart.

Franz, Duke of Bavaria Francis II


Franz was born on 14 July 1933 in Munich, the son of Albrecht, Duke of Bavaria, and his morganatic wife, Countess Maria Draskovich of Trakostjan of the House of Drašković, a Croatian noble family. On 18 May 1949, when Franz was 15, his grandfather Crown Prince Rupprecht recognised the marriage of Franz's parents as dynastic, and Franz became a prince of Bavaria.

The Wittelsbach dynasty were opposed to the Nazi regime in Germany, and in 1939, Franz's father Albrecht took his family to Hungary. They lived in Budapest for four years before moving to their Castle at Sárvár in late 1943. In March 1944, Nazi Germany occupied Hungary, and on 6 October 1944 the entire family, including the 11-year-old Franz, were arrested. They were sent to a series of Nazi concentration camps, including Oranienburg and Dachau. At the end of April 1945, they were liberated by the United States Third Army.


After the war, Franz received his high-school education at the Benedictine Abbey of Ettal. He then studied business management at the University of Munich and in Zurich. Franz developed a passion for collecting modern art. Items from his private collection are on permanent loan to the Pinakothek der Moderne in Munich. He is also an honorary trustee of the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Current activities

Franz lives in a wing of Nymphenburg Palace, the former summer residence of the Kings of Bavaria, in Munich. His country retreat is Berg Castle, and he occasionally uses the former royal castle at Berchtesgaden and Hohenschwangau Castle, both of which house family museums.

His 80th birthday party, in 2013, was held at the Schleissheim Palace near Munich. The party was attended by 2,500 guests, including the current Minister-President of Bavaria, Horst Seehofer.

In 2016 he became the donor of the project of restoration of the Statue of St. John of Nepomuk in Divina, Slovakia, realised out under auspices of the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany in Slovakia. The project was honoured by patronage of His Majesty Norodom Sihamoni, the king of Cambodia and His Majesty Simeon II., the last tsar of Bulgaria. The project was completed in the year 2017.

Succession rights

Franz has never married. The heir presumptive to the headship of the House of Wittelsbach is his brother Prince Max, Duke in Bavaria. Because Max has five daughters but no sons, he is followed in the line of succession by his and Franz's first cousin Prince Luitpold.

The current senior heir-general of King James II of England and VII of Scotland, Franz is, as King Francis II, considered by Jacobites to be the legitimate successor to the Stuart kings of England, France, Scotland, and Ireland. It is not, however, a claim which he pursues.

The Jacobite succession, following English common law, transmits the right to the throne to or through women, and their descendants, whenever they have no brothers, unlike the semi-Salic law of the Wittelsbachs in Bavaria which only allows women to accede once all the men in the dynasty have expired. Therefore, the Jacobite succession will pass to Prince Max's eldest daughter, Sophie, Hereditary Princess of Liechtenstein, while the Bavarian succession will pass to his agnatic cousin, Luitpold.

Franz is descended from the House of Stuart through the following persons:

  • Henrietta, Princess of England (1644–1670), Duchess of Orléans, youngest daughter of King Charles I of England
  • Princess Anne Marie d'Orléans (1669–1728), Queen consort of Sardinia
  • Charles Emmanuel III of Sardinia (1701–1773), Duke of Savoy and King of Sardinia
  • Victor Amadeus III (1726–1796), King of Sardinia
  • Victor Emmanuel I of Sardinia (1759–1824)
  • Princess Maria Beatrice of Savoy (1792–1840), Duchess of Modena
  • Archduke Ferdinand Karl Viktor of Austria-Este (1821–1849), Prince of Modena
  • Archduchess Maria Theresa of Austria-Este (1849–1919), Queen consort of Bavaria
  • Rupprecht, Crown Prince of Bavaria (1869–1955)
  • Albrecht, Duke of Bavaria (1905–1996)
  • Franz's successors to the Jacobite claim are:

  • Maximilian, Duke in Bavaria (b. 1937)
  • Sophie, Princess of Bavaria, Duchess in Bavaria (b. 1967), Hereditary Princess of Liechtenstein
  • Prince Joseph Wenzel of Liechtenstein (b. 1995)
  • Titles and styles

    Franz uses the titles Duke of Bavaria, of Franconia and in Swabia, Count Palatine of the Rhine, plus the style "His Royal Highness".

  • 14 July 1933 – 8 July 1996: His Royal Highness Prince Franz of Bavaria
  • (in Germany): Franz Prinz von Bayern
  • 8 July 1996 – present: His Royal Highness The Duke of Bavaria
  • (in Germany): Franz Herzog von Bayern
  • (by Jacobites): His Majesty King Francis II of England, Scotland, France, and Ireland
  • (by Othonists): His Majesty king Fragiskos I of Greece
  • Franz was styled Prinz von Bayern at birth. In 1996, after the death of his father, he changed his style to Herzog von Bayern ('Duke of Bavaria').


  •  Germany: Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany, 1st Class
  •   Vatican: Knight Grand Cross with Collar of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre
  • Sovereign Military Order of Malta: Protector Bailiff Knight Grand Cross of Obedience of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, 1st Class
  • Sovereign Military Order of Malta: Knight Grand Cross of the Order of Merit
  •  Romania: Grand Cross of the Order of Merit
  • Academic

    He is a Hereditary Senator of the University of Munich and an Honorary Member of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and Humanities.


    He holds many honorary positions in civic and religious organisations in Bavaria. He supports charitable enterprises helping orphans in Romania.


    Franz, Duke of Bavaria Wikipedia

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