Friedrich II. (Hessen Kassel)

Friedrich II., Landgraf von Hessen-Cassel
Friedrich II., land count von Hessen-Cassel

Friedrich II. (* 14. August 1720 in Kassel; † 31. October 1785 in lock white stone, Kassel) was land count von Hessen-Kassel. He was the first and only national prince of Hessen Kassel after the reformation, tocatholic faith went over. Admits became it as a first prince of the clearing-up in Hessen, in addition, by the soldier trade in the American war of independence.

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it was except one as a babythe deceased older brother the only son of the land count Wilhelm VIII. After education and schools in Geneva and Lausanne he married 1740 Maria, the daughter of the English king George II. Afterwards it fought for emperors Karl VII. Albrecht in the Austrian succession war and converted to the catholicFaith. Thereupon its wife with its three sons from it and its father separated instructed into the hessian Assekurationsakte of 1754 Friedrich to leave the Protestant religion untouched in Hessen and gave Maria and the children the county Hanau, which was separated from Hessen Kassel.Friedrich never and its children only saw its wife again 1782.

After the death of the land countess Marie he married 1773 in second marriage the princess Philippine of Prussia (1745-1800) from the Nebenlinie Brandenburg Schwedt. This marriage remained childless.


in the seven-year-old war struck itself Friedrichon the side of Prussia and fought in the Prussian army up to the end of the war also.1760 became Friedrich land count von Hessen-Cassel and undertook some unsuccessful attempts to combine the county Hanau again with Hessen Kassel which failed however because of the resistance of Great Britain and the Evangelist conditions.After the war an active building activity in Kassel, which the land count supported and promoted, began. It settled industry and Manufakturen in Hessen, it got artists and scholars to Kassel. The first freely accessible museum European mainland, the Fridericianum developed 1779. It based1777 also the academy of the arts

soldier trade

the money for these expensive enterprises procured itself Friedrich by for this time the common letting of soldiers to other states, with priority at Great Britain. England needed troops for the American war of independence and Friedrich and othersGerman princes supplied king George III. over 20.000 mercenaries for the war in America. For this Friedrichs Minister of Schlieffen with England contracts locked, which made Friedrich one of the richest princes of Europe.

Monument Friedrichs II. on the Friedrichsplatz in Kassel

the soldier trade in such a way specifiedunder land count Friedrich II. from Hessen Kassel makes the princes into the present inside the target of criticism; here it is ignored that both other Feudalherren of the time, in addition, democratically governed Switzerland proceeded comparably. The closer view of the financial conditions under thosethe hessian troops were inserted into North America, proven that for durably damaged, pleased or died soldiers payments at Hessen due became, which ran partially into charitable donations, which had years existence up to the inflation of the 1920er.

„The soldier trade “economic and military obligations was actualowed. Hessen was dependent in consequence of its central situation on a strong army, could not maintain however because of not overcome devastations of the seven-year-old of war, which had produced straight damages of the economic life seizing deeply on hessian territory, from own means hardly the necessary Truppenstärke. The recruitmentthe troops was allowed on Friedrichs instruction not under obligation or use of force to take place and promised for many hessian Freiwillige a safe getting along.

Because of the large portion of hessian soldiers of the British auxiliary troops, Hessians for all German auxiliary troops is in the USA to today the designationthe war of independence common.


in the year 1785 died Friedrich surprisingly at an impact accumulation and left to his successor William IX.after 25-year old regency a filled public treasury. He was buried in the catholic sinking Elizabeth church justified by him and after the Second World War into thatStairway of the new building of the church umgebettet. Thus he is the only land count of the modern times, which is not buried in the Kasseler March in church.


all with his first Mrs. Maria ofHanover.


  • Peter Gerke: Clearing-up + classicism in Hessen Kassel under land count Friedrich II. Exhibition catalog, Kassel 1979

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