Crown Prince Rupprecht of Bavaria

Discussion in 'Military Biographies' started by liverpool annie, Jan 2, 2009.

  1. liverpool annie

    liverpool annie New Member

    Crown Prince Rupprecht (1869-1955), heir to the throne of Bavaria, was born in 1869.

    Upon the outbreak of the First World War Rupprecht was given command of the German Sixth Army sent to Lorraine to repel the anticipated French advance as set out in the pre-war Plan XVII.

    In the Battle of Loraine which began on 14 August 1914, the French Army began its assault upon Lorraine. Rupprecht implemented a strategy of apparently retreating under the force of the French attack, only to bounce back in a fierce, cleverly manoeuvred counter-attack, having lured the French armies into a strong attack upon a heavily defended position. As the French armies advanced they encountered increasingly stern German opposition, including treacherous machine gun fire and heavy artillery.

    Rupprecht's forces nevertheless failed to break the French army. Rupprecht was promoted to Field Marshal in 1916 and given command of the northern group of armies in August, 'Army Group Rupprecht', spending the remainder of the war on the Western Front.

    Generally regarded as the best of the German royal commanders who served in the war, Rupprecht came into conflict with Chief of Staff Erich Falkenhayn concerning the German Chief of Staff's central control of battle strategy.

    With the German revolutions which followed the war, Rupprecht lost his inheritance to the Bavarian crown, living in retirement for the remainder of his life (although many in the region with monarchist views continued to regard Rupprecht as rightful King).

    Rupprecht's stated opposition to the onset of Nazism led to his exile in Italy in 1938, where he remained in Florence throughout the Second World War. In 1944 Rupprecht evaded arrest by the Nazis, although his wife and children were interned at separate concentration camps until the war's closure.

    Crown Prince Rupprecht died in 1955.

    Crown Prince Rupprecht of Bavaria or Crown Prince Rupert of Bavaria (German: Kronprinz Rupprecht von Bayern) (18 May 1869 – 2 August 1955) was the last Bavarian Crown Prince. His full title was HRH Rupprecht Maria Leopold Ferdinand Crown Prince of Bavaria, Duke of Bavaria, Franken and Swabia, Count Palatine of the Rhine.

    Rupprecht was the son of Ludwig III, the last King of Bavaria and Maria Theresia, Archduchess of Austria-Este, niece of Francis V, Duke of Modena. He commanded the German 6.Armee at the outbreak of World War I in Lorraine. Rupprecht succeeded in holding back the French attack in August 1914, in the Battle of Lorraine, and then launched a counteroffensive later that month. Rupprecht failed to break through the French lines and remained on the Western Front during the stalemate that would last until the end of the war. Rupprecht achieved the rank of Field Marshal (Generalfeldmarschall) in 1916 and assumed command of Army Group Rupprecht. Rupprecht has been considered by some to be one of the best Royal commanders in the Germany Army of World War I. He was awarded the Blue Max (Pour le Merite).

    Rupprecht married firstly, in 1900, Duchess Marie Gabriele in Bavaria, and secondly, in 1921, Princess Antonia of Luxembourg, daughter of Guillaume IV, Grand Duke of Luxembourg.

    Rupprecht lost his chance to rule Bavaria when it became a republic in the revolutions that followed the war. Some royalists still referred to him as the King of Bavaria. Rupprecht was opposed to the regime of Nazi Germany and was forced into exile in Italy in 1939.

    In October 1944, when Germany occupied Hungary, Rupprecht evaded arrest but his wife and children were captured. They were first imprisoned in the Sachsenhausen concentration camp at Oranienburg, Brandenburg. In April 1945 they were moved to the Dachau concentration camp, where they were liberated by the United States Army. Rupprecht died in 1955.

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