List of rulers of Brandenburg

This article lists the Margraves and Electors of Brandenburg during the period of time that Brandenburg was a constituent state of the Holy Roman Empire.

The Mark, or March, of Brandenburg was one of the primary constituent states of the Holy Roman Empire. It was created as the Margraviate of Brandenburg by Albert the Bear, Margrave of the Northern March. In 1356, by the terms of the Golden Bull of Charles IV, the Margrave of Brandenburg was given the permanent right to participate in the election of the Holy Roman Emperor with the title of Elector (Kurfürst).

The line of Margrave-Electors came to an end with the fall of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806. Brandenburg was then incorporated into the Kingdom of Prussia, an independent kingdom which the Electors had ruled since 1701.

Margraves of Brandenburg

Ascanian Dynasty
Name Reign Comments
Albert I 1157–1170 Ruler of the Nordmark from 1134. Called "Albert the Bear".
Otto I 1170–1184 Son of Albert I. Ruled together with his father from 1144.
Otto II 1184–1205 Son of preceding.
Albert II 1205–1220 Brother.

  • 1220–1266
  • 1220-1267

Co-rulers, sons of Albert II.
From 1266 to 1319, Brandenburg was held by the two lines of Brandenburg-Stendal and Brandenburg-Salzwedel, all of whom jointly shared the title of Margrave.
Brandenburg-Stendal Brandenburg-Salzwedel
Co-rulers, sons of John I:

Co-rulers, sons of Otto III:



After the extinction of the Ascanian dynasty in 1320, Brandenburg came under the control of the Emperor Louis IV of the House of Wittelsbach, who granted Brandenburg to his eldest son, Louis V of Bavaria.
Wittelsbach Dynasty
Name Reign Comments
Louis I "the Brandenburger" 1323–51 Cousin of Henry II, Son of Emperor Louis IV.
Louis II "the Roman". 1351–56 Half-brother of preceding; named Elector in 1356.

Electors of Brandenburg

Wittelsbach Dynasty
Image Name Reign Comments
Louis II "the Roman" 1356–1365 First Elector of Brandenburg.
Otto V 1365–1373 Brother of preceding. Co-ruler of Brandenburg with his brother from 1351, but as a minor (b. 1346) took no part in administration until his brother's death. Abdicated 1373 but retained Electoral title. Died 1379.
Luxemburg Dynasty
Image Name Reign Comments
Wenceslaus 1373–1378 Emperor Charles IV forced the last Wittelsbach Elector to abdicate, and then installed his own son, Wenceslaus. As Wenceslaus was still a minor (b. 1361), the Emperor administered the margraviate for him.
Sigismund 1378–1388 Younger brother of Wenceslaus; took control of Brandenburg on his brother's ascension as King of Germany and Bohemia. Gave up Brandenburg to his uncle Jobst as security for a substantial loan.
Jobst of Moravia 1388–1411 Sigismund's first cousin, nephew of Charles IV. Elected as German King in 1410 in opposition to Sigismund, but died very shortly afterwards.
Sigismund 1411–1415 Following Jobst's death, Sigismund regained control of Brandenburg and was elected undisputed King of Germany.
Hohenzollern Dynasty
Image Name Reign Comments
Frederick I 1415–1440 Originally Burgrave of Nuremberg. Appointed by King Sigismund in 1415 and enfeoffed in 1417. His eldest son John the Alchemist administered Brandenburg as Margrave from 1425 to 1437, but Frederick retained the Electorship.
Frederick II 1440–1470 Son of Frederick I. Called "Irontooth" (Eisenzahn). Administered Brandenburg from 1437 and became Elector on his father's death in 1440.
Albert III Achilles 1470–1486 Brother.
John Cicero 1486–1499 Son.
Joachim I Nestor 1499–1535 Son. His younger brother, Albert was co-Margrave 1499-1513, but only Joachim was Elector.
Joachim II Hector 1535–1571 Son.
John George 1571–1598 Son.
Joachim Frederick 1598–1608 Son.
John Sigismund 1608–1619 Son. Duke of Prussia from 1618.
George William 1619–1640 Son. Ruled during the Thirty Years' War. Also Duke of Prussia.
Frederick William I 1640–1688 Son. Called "the Great Elector". Also Duke of Prussia.
Frederick III 1688–1713 Son. "King in Prussia" as Frederick I from 1701.
Frederick William II 1713–1740 Son. King in Prussia. Called "the Soldier-King".
Frederick IV 1740–1786 Son. King in Prussia as Frederick II to 1772; after annexations of Polish Prussian territory, "King of Prussia". Called "Frederick the Great".
Frederick William III 1786–1797 Nephew. Second king of Prussia.
Frederick William IV 1797–1806 Son. Last Elector of Brandenburg and third king of Prussia. The Holy Roman Empire was dissolved in 1806, after which Frederick William ruled as independent King of Prussia (including Brandenburg) to his death in 1840.

For further rulers of Brandenburg as part of Prussia, see List of rulers of Prussia.


After the defeat of Nazi Germany in the Second World War, Brandenburg, which had previously been merely a province of Prussia, re-emerged as a German Land.

Prime Minister of Brandenburg, 1945-1952

After being abolished in a reorganization of the territories administered by the German Democratic Republic (East Germany), the Land Brandenburg was restored in the prelude to German unification in 1990.

Ministers President of Brandenburg, 1990 to date

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