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A personal union is the combination of two or more states that have the same monarch while their boundaries, laws, and interests remain distinct.A real union, by contrast, would involve the constituent states being to some extent interlinked, such as by sharing some limited governmental institutions. Unlike the personal union, in a federation and a unitary state, a central (federal) government spanning all member states exists, with the degree of self-governance distinguishing the two. The ruler in a personal union does not need to be a hereditary monarch.
The term was coined by German jurist Johann Stephan Pütter, introducing it into Elementa iuris publici germanici (Elements of German Public Law) of 1760.
Personal unions can arise for several reasons, ranging from coincidence (a woman who is already married to a king becomes queen regnant, and their child inherits the crown of both countries; the King of one country inherits the crown of another country) to virtual annexation (where a personal union sometimes was seen as a means of preventing uprisings). They can also be codified (i.e., the constitutions of the states clearly express that they shall share the same person as head of state) or non-codified, in which case they can easily be broken (e.g., by the death of the monarch when the two states have different succession laws).
Because presidents of republics are ordinarily chosen from within the citizens of the state in question, the concept of personal union has almost never crossed over from monarchies into republics, with the rare exception of the president of France being a co-prince of Andorra. In 1860 Marthinus Wessel Pretorius was simultaneously elected as the president of Transvaal and Orange Free State and he tried to unify the two countries but his mission failed and led to the Transvaal Civil War.
Even though France is now a republic with a president and not a monarchy, it has nevertheless been in personal union with the neighbouring nominal monarchy (non-hereditary) of Andorra since 1278.
After 1707, see Great Britain below.
Note: The point at issue in the War of the Spanish Succession was the fear that the succession to the Spanish throne dictated by Spanish law, which would devolve on Louis, le Grand Dauphin — already heir to the throne of France — would create a personal union that would upset the European balance of power; France had the most powerful military in Europe at the time, and Spain the largest empire.
King Chungseon reigned as King of Goryeo in 1298 and 1308–1313 and as King of Shenyang or King of Shen from 1307 (according to the History of Yuan ) or 1308 (according to Goryeosa ) to 1316. At that time, Goryeo had already become a vassal of Yuan dynasty and the Yuan imperial family and the Goryeo royal family had close relationship by marriages of convenience. Because he was a very powerful man during Emperor Wuzong's reign, he could become the King of Shenyang where many Korean people lived in China. However, he lost his power in the Yuan imperial court after the death of the Emperor Wuzong. Because the Yuan dynasty made Chungseon abdicate the crown of the Goryeo in 1313, the personal union was ended. King Chungsuk, Chungseon's eldest son, became the new King of Goryeo. In 1316, the Yuan dynasty made Chungseon abdicate the crown of Shen in favour of Wang Go, one of his nephews, resulting in him becoming the new King of Shen.
Before 1707, see England and Scotland.
After 1801, see United Kingdom below.
In 1826, the newly created Duchy of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha was initially a double duchy, ruled by Duke Ernest I in a personal union. In 1852, the duchies were bound in a political and real union. They were then a quasi-federal unitary state, even though later attempts to merge the duchies failed.
The duchies of Saxe-Weimar and Saxe-Eisenach were in personal union from 1741, when the ruling house of Saxe-Eisenach died out, until 1809, when they were merged into the single duchy of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach.
Duchies with peculiar rules for succession. See the Schleswig-Holstein Question.
The duchies of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt and Schwarzburg-Sondershausen were in personal union from 1909, when Prince Günther of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt succeeded also to the throne of Schwarzburg-Sondershausen, until 1918, when he (and all the other German monarchs) abdicated.
After 1707, see Great Britain above.
Leon, Castile and Aragon
After 1542, see England above.
The House of Wittelsbach is the Royal Bavarian dynasty from Germany, with branches that have ruled over territories including Bavaria, the Palatinate, Holland and Zeeland, Sweden, Hungary, Bohemia, the Electorate of Cologne and other prince-bishoprics, and Greece. Their ancestral lands of the Palatinate and Bavaria were Prince-electorates, as well as the Archbishopric-Electorate of Cologne, and the family had three of its members elected emperors and kings of the Holy Roman Empire. Their Kingdom of Bavaria was created in 1805 and continued to exist until 1918.
Duke is a male title either of a monarch ruling over a duchy, or of a member of royalty, or nobility. As rulers, dukes are ranked below emperors, kings, and grand dukes. As royalty or nobility, they are ranked below princes of nobility and grand dukes. The title comes from French duc, itself from the Latin dux, 'leader', a term used in republican Rome to refer to a military commander without an official rank, and later coming to mean the leading military commander of a province. In most countries, the word duchess is the female equivalent.
Christian IX was King of Denmark from 1863 until his death in 1906. From 1863 to 1864, he was concurrently Duke of Schleswig, Holstein and Lauenburg.
A grand duchy is a country or territory whose official head of state or ruler is a monarch bearing the title of grand duke or grand duchess.
Holstein is the region between the rivers Elbe and Eider. It is the southern half of Schleswig-Holstein, the northernmost state of Germany.
The history of Schleswig-Holstein consists of the corpus of facts since the pre-history times until the modern establishing of the Schleswig-Holstein state.
The House of Glücksburg, shortened from House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg, is a collateral branch of the House of Oldenburg, members of which have reigned at various times in Denmark, Norway, Greece, and several northern German states.
Holstein-Gottorp or Schleswig-Holstein-Gottorp is the historiographical name, as well as contemporary shorthand name, for the parts of the duchies of Schleswig and Holstein, also known as Ducal Holstein, that were ruled by the dukes of Schleswig-Holstein-Gottorp. Other parts of the duchies were ruled by the kings of Denmark.
The House of Oldenburg is a European dynasty of North German origin and with strong links to Denmark since the 15th century. It is one of Europe's most significant royal houses, with branches that rule or have ruled in Denmark, Iceland, Greece, Norway, Russia, Sweden, Schleswig, Holstein, and Oldenburg. The current Queen of Denmark and King of Norway, the former King of Greece, the late consort of the monarch of the United Kingdom, as well as the first 11 persons in the line of succession to the British throne, are all patrilineal members of the Glücksburg branch of this house.
The First Schleswig War or Three Years' War was the first round of military conflict in southern Denmark and northern Germany rooted in the Schleswig-Holstein Question, contesting the issue of who should control the Duchies of Schleswig and Holstein. The war, which lasted from 1848 to 1851, also involved troops from Prussia and Sweden. Ultimately, under international pressure, the Prussians had to withdraw their forces. As a result, the war ended in a Danish victory over the rebels and the signing of the London Protocol in 1852. A second conflict, the Second Schleswig War, erupted in 1864.
Habsburg Monarchy, or Danubian Monarchy, or Habsburg Empire is a modern umbrella term coined by historians to denote the numerous lands and kingdoms of the Habsburg dynasty, especially for those of the Austrian line. Although from 1438 to 1806, a member of the House of Habsburg was also Holy Roman Emperor, the Holy Roman Empire itself is not considered to have been part of what is now called the Habsburg Monarchy.
The Gastein Convention, also called the Convention of Badgastein, was a treaty signed at Bad Gastein in Austria on 14 August 1865. It embodied agreements between the two principal powers of the German Confederation, Prussia and Austria, over the governing of the 'Elbe Duchies' of Schleswig, Holstein and Saxe-Lauenburg.
Monarchy was the prevalent form of government in the history of Europe throughout the Middle Ages, only occasionally competing with communalism, notably in the case of the Maritime republics and the Swiss Confederacy.
The Duchy of Holstein was the northernmost state of the Holy Roman Empire, located in the present German state of Schleswig-Holstein. It originated when King Christian I of Denmark had his County of Holstein-Rendsburg elevated to a duchy by Emperor Frederick III in 1474. Members of the Danish House of Oldenburg ruled Holstein – jointly with the Duchy of Schleswig – for its entire existence.
This list contains all European emperors, kings and regent princes and their consorts as well as well-known crown princes since the Middle Ages, whereas the lists are starting with either the beginning of the monarchy or with a change of the dynasty. In addition, it contains the still-existing principalities of Monaco and Liechtenstein and the Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg.
The Monarchy of Denmark is a constitutional institution and a historic office of the Kingdom of Denmark. The Kingdom includes Denmark proper, as well as the autonomous territories of the Faroe Islands and Greenland. The Kingdom of Denmark was already consolidated in the 8th century, whose rulers are consistently referred to in Frankish sources as "kings". Under the rule of King Gudfred in 804 the Kingdom may have included all the major provinces of medieval Denmark. The current unified Kingdom of Denmark was founded or re-united by the Viking kings Gorm the Old and Harald Bluetooth in the 10th century. Originally an elective monarchy, it became hereditary only in the 17th century during the reign of Frederick III. A decisive transition to a constitutional monarchy occurred in 1849 with the writing of the first democratic Constitution, replacing the vast majority of the old absolutist Constitution. The current Royal House is a branch of the princely family of Glücksburg, originally from Schleswig-Holstein in modern-day Germany, the same royal house as the Norwegian and former Greek royal families.
Wanke nicht, mein Vaterland, also known as Schleswig-Holstein, meerumschlungen or Schleswig-Holstein-Lied is the unofficial anthem of Schleswig-Holstein. It was written in 1844 and presented at the Schleswiger Sängerfest. The tune was written by Carl Gottlieb Bellmann (1772–1862). The text had originally been written by Berlin-based lawyer Karl Friedrich Straß (1803–1864) but rewritten by Matthäus Friedrich Chemnitz (1815–1870) shortly before the start of the Sängerfest in order to represent the then atmosphere in a better way. The song expresses the wish for a united, independent and German Schleswig-Holstein.
The Treaty of Tsarskoye Selo was a territorial and dynastic treaty between the Russian Empire and Denmark-Norway. Signed on 1 June 1773, it transferred control of ducal Schleswig-Holstein to the Danish crown in return for Russian control of the County of Oldenburg and adjacent lands within the Holy Roman Empire. The treaty reduced the fragmentation of Danish territory and led to an alliance between Denmark-Norway and Russia that lasted into the Napoleonic Wars. It also made possible the construction of the Eider Canal, parts of which were later incorporated into the Kiel Canal.