The Princely House of Thurn and Taxis (German: Fürstenhaus Thurn und Taxis [ˈtuːɐ̯n ʔʊnt ˈtaksɪs] ) is a family of German nobility that is part of the Briefadel . It was a key player in the postal services in Europe during the 16th century, until the end of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806, and became well known as the owner of breweries and builder of many castles. The current head of the house is Albert, 12th Prince of Thurn and Taxis. The family is one of the wealthiest in Germany and has resided at St. Emmeram Castle in Regensburg since 1748.
County of Thurn and Taxis
Grafschaft Thurn und Taxis
|Status||State of the Holy Roman Empire|
|Historical era||Early modern period|
• Raised to Briefadel
• Raised to Reichsfreiherren
• Raised to County
• Granted princely rank (Spanish Court)
The Tasso family (from the Italian word for "badger") was a Lombard family in the area of Bergamo. The earliest records place them in Almenno in the Val Brembana around 1200,before they fled to the more distant village of Cornello to escape feuding between Bergamo's Colleoni (Guelf) and Suardi (Ghibelline) families. Around 1290, after Milan had conquered Bergamo, Omodeo Tasso organized 32 of his relatives into the Company of Couriers (Compagnia dei Corrieri) and linked Milan with Venice and Rome. The recipient of royal and papal patronage, his post riders were so comparatively efficient that they became known as bergamaschi throughout Italy.
Ruggiero de Tassis was named to the court of the emperor Frederick the Peaceful in 1443. He organized a post system between Bergamo and Vienna by 1450;from Innsbruck to Italy and Styria around 1460; and Vienna with Brussels around 1480. Upon his success, Ruggiero was knighted and made a gentleman of the Chamber. Janetto von Taxis was appointed Chief Master of Postal Services at Innsbruck in 1489. Philip of Burgundy elevated Janetto's brother Francesco I de Tassis to captain of his post in 1502. Owing to a payment dispute with Philip, Francisco opened his post to public use in 1506. By 1516, Francisco had moved the family to Brussels in the Duchy of Brabant, where they became instrumental to Habsburg rule, linking the rich Habsburg Netherlands to the Spanish court. The normal route passed through France, but a secondary route across the Alps to Genoa was available in times of hostility.
At the death of Francisco in 1517, emperor Charles V appointed Francisco's nephew Johann Baptista von Taxis (1470-1541) as Generalpostmeister of the Reichspost. Johann Baptista was briefly succeeded by his eldest son, Franz II von Taxis (1514-1543), after whose untimely death the family split into two further branches. The youngest son, Leonhard I von Taxis, succeeded as Generalpostmeister and is the ancestor of the princely Thurn and Taxis family. Johann Baptista's second-eldest son, Raymond de Tassis (1515-1579), took over the office of postmaster-general to the Crown of Spain and settled in Spain. Raymond married into Spanish nobility, and his eldest son Juan de Tassis was created Count of Villamediana in 1603 by Phillip III. The Spanish line of the family became extinct with Juan de Tassis, 2nd Count of Villamediana, a celebrated poet who died in mysterious circumstances in 1622.
The name Thurn und Taxis arose from the translation into German of the family's French title (de La Tour et Tassis or de Tour et Taxis). Charles V named Giovanni Battista de Tassis as master of his post in 1520; Maximilian I expanded their network throughout the Holy Roman Empire.In 1624, the family members were elevated to grafen (counts), and they formally adopted the German form of their name in 1650. They were named 'princely' in 1695 at the behest of Emperor Leopold I.
The family operated the Thurn-und-Taxis Post, successor to the Imperial Reichspost of the Holy Roman Empire, between 1806 and 1867. Their postal service was gradually lost over the centuries, with the Spanish network being bought by the crown in the 18th century and the German post being purchased by Prussia after the fall of the Free City of Frankfurt in 1866. The family seat was established in Regensburg, Germany, and it has remained at St. Emmeram Castle there since 1748.
Rainer Maria Rilke wrote his Duino Elegies while visiting Princess Marie of Thurn and Taxis (née Princess of Hohenlohe) at her family's Duino Castle. Rilke later dedicated his only novel ( The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge ) to the princess, who was his patroness. Princess Marie's relation to Regensburg's Thurn and Taxis family is rather distant, however – she was married to Prince Alexander of Thurn and Taxis, a member of the family's Czech branch that in the early 19th century settled in Bohemia (now the Czech Republic) and became strongly connected to Czech national culture and history.
Several members of the family have been Knights of Malta.
Until 1919, the titles of the head of the princely house were Seine Durchlaucht der Fürst von Thurn und Taxis, Fürst zu Buchau und Fürst von Krotoszyn, Herzog zu Wörth und Donaustauf, gefürsteter Graf zu Friedberg-Scheer, Graf zu Valle-Sássina, auch zu Marchtal, Neresheim usw., Erbgeneralpostmeister (His Serene Highness the Prince of Thurn and Taxis, Prince of Buchau and Prince of Krotoszyn, Duke of Wörth and Donaustauf, Princely Count of Friedberg-Scheer, Count of Valle-Sássina, Marchtal, Neresheim etc., Hereditary Postmaster General).
The current head of the house of Thurn and Taxis is Albert II, 12th Prince of Thurn and Taxis, son of Johannes and his wife, Gloria. The family is one of the wealthiest in Germany. The family's brewery was sold to the Paulaner Group of Munich in 1996, but it still produces beer under the brand of Thurn und Taxis.
|Thurn und Taxis|
The Thurn and Taxis family came to massive media attention during the late 1970s through mid-1980s when the late Prince Johannes married Countess Mariae Gloria of Schönburg-Glauchau, a member of an impoverished but mediatized noble family. The couple's wild, "jet set" lifestyle and Princess Gloria's over-the-top appearance (characterized by bright hair colours and avant-garde clothes) earned her the nickname of "Princess TNT".
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Fürstenberg is the name of a Swabian noble house in Germany, based primarily in what is today southern Baden-Württemberg near the source of the Danube river.
Gloria, Dowager Princess of Thurn and Taxis is a German socialite, businesswoman, philanthropist, Catholic activist, and artist. Through her marriage to Johannes, 11th Prince of Thurn and Taxis, she became the Princess Consort of Thurn und Taxis.
Donaustauf is a market town in Bavaria, 5 km (3 mi) east of Regensburg at the foothills of the Bavarian Forest. The ruins of a medieval castle, presumably erected between 914 and 930, tower above the small town. Situated nearby on a hill rising from the Danube is the imposing Teutonic temple of fame, Walhalla, a costly reproduction of the Parthenon in Athens. The Walhalla was commissioned by Ludwig I, King of Bavaria, and inaugurated on 18 October 1842.
The Dukes of Castel Duino are a noble family in Italy descending from the Bohemian line of the Princely House of Thurn and Taxis. The title was created along with the additional title of Principe della Torre e Tasso in 1934 for Prince Alexander of Thurn and Taxis following his naturalisation in Kingdom of Italy. The second duke, Raimundo, married Princess Eugénie of Greece and Denmark a member of the Greek Royal Family.
Albert Maria Joseph Maximilian Lamoral, 8th Prince of Thurn and Taxis was the eighth Prince of Thurn and Taxis and Head of the Princely House of Thurn and Taxis from 2 June 1885 until his death on 22 January 1952.
The Czech branch of the House of Thurn and Taxis is a dynastic cadet branch of the Princely House of Thurn and Taxis, a German noble family that was a key player in the postal services in Europe in the 16th century and became well known as the owner of breweries and builder of many castles.
Karl August Joseph Maria Maximilian Lamoral Antonius Ignatius Benediktus Valentin, 10th Prince of Thurn and Taxis was the tenth Prince of Thurn and Taxis and Head of the Princely House of Thurn and Taxis from 13 July 1971 until his death on 26 April 1982.
The Order of Parfaite Amitié is a dynastic order of knighthood of the princely House of Thurn and Taxis.
Maximilian Karl, 6th Prince of Thurn and Taxis, full German name: Maximilian Karl Fürst von Thurn und Taxis was the sixth Prince of Thurn and Taxis, head of the Thurn-und-Taxis-Post, and Head of the Princely House of Thurn and Taxis from 15 July 1827 until his death on 10 November 1871.
Baroness Wilhelmine Caroline Christiane Henriette of Dörnberg, was a member of the House of Dörnberg and a Baroness of Dörnberg by birth. Through her marriage to Maximilian Karl, 6th Prince of Thurn and Taxis, Wilhelmine was also a member of the House of Thurn and Taxis. Wilhelmine was known to her family and friends as "Mimi."
Karl Alexander, 5th Prince of Thurn and Taxis, full German name: Karl Alexander Fürst von Thurn und Taxis was the fifth Prince of Thurn and Taxis, head of the Thurn-und-Taxis-Post, and Head of the Princely House of Thurn and Taxis from 13 November 1805 until his death on 15 July 1827. With the death of his father on 13 November 1805, he became nominal Generalpostmeister of the Imperial Reichspost until the resignation of Francis II, Holy Roman Emperor.
Duchess Therese Mathilde Amalie of Mecklenburg-Strelitz was a member of the House of Mecklenburg-Strelitz and a Duchess of Mecklenburg. Through her marriage to Karl Alexander, 5th Prince of Thurn and Taxis, Therese was also a member of the House of Thurn and Taxis.
Princess Mathilde Sophie of Oettingen-Oettingen and Oettingen-Spielberg was a member of the Princely House of Oettingen-Spielberg and a Princess of Oettingen-Oettingen and Oettingen-Spielberg by birth. Through her marriage to Maximilian Karl, 6th Prince of Thurn and Taxis, Mathilde Sophie was also a member of the Princely House of Thurn and Taxis and Princess consort of Thurn and Taxis.
Duchess Auguste Elisabeth of Württemberg was a member of the Ducal House of Württemberg and a Duchess of Württemberg by birth. Through her marriage to Karl Anselm, 4th Prince of Thurn and Taxis, Auguste was also a member of the Princely House of Thurn and Taxis and Princess consort of Thurn and Taxis.
Alexander Ferdinand, 3rd Prince of Thurn and Taxis, full German name: Alexander Ferdinand Fürst von Thurn und Taxis was the third Prince of Thurn and Taxis, Postmaster General of the Imperial Reichspost, and Head of the Princely House of Thurn and Taxis from 8 November 1739 until his death on 17 March 1773. Alexander Ferdinand served as Principal Commissioner at the Perpetual Imperial Diet in Frankfurt am Main and Regensburg for Charles VII, Holy Roman Emperor, Francis I, Holy Roman Emperor, and Joseph II, Holy Roman Emperor from 1 February 1743 to 1745 and again from 1748 until 1773.
Princess Maria Theresia von Thurn und Taxis, known professionally as Maria Thurn und Taxis, is a German visual artist, journalist, forest and agricultural landowner, and member of the German princely House of Thurn und Taxis. Along with her siblings, her family owns one of Europe's largest private estates.
Prince Alessandro della Torre e Tasso, 1st Duke of Castel Duino, full German name: Alexander Karl Egon Theobald Lamoral Johann Baptist Maria, Prinz von Thurn und Taxis was a member of the Bohemian branch of the princely House of Thurn and Taxis. Alessandro was created Prince della Torre e Tasso and first Duke of Castel Duino by Victor Emmanuel III of Italy after relocating to the Kingdom of Italy in 1923.
The Thurn-und-Taxis Post was a private postal service and the successor to the Imperial Reichspost of the Holy Roman Empire. The Thurn-und-Taxis Post was operated by the Princely House of Thurn and Taxis between 1806 and 1867. The company was headquartered in Regensburg from its creation in 1806 until 1810 when it relocated to Frankfurt am Main where it remained until 1867.
Duino Castle is a fourteenth-century fortification located in Duino, near Trieste, Italy, on the cliffs overlooking the Gulf of Trieste.
Schloss Höfling is a Baroque castle in Regensburg, Bavaria. In 1985 the castle, which is owned by the House of Thurn and Taxis, was leased for one hundred years to the Walderdorff family.