The Higher Nobility (Uradel/Hoher Adel)

The older, senior class of the nobility is made up of the thirty-five houses which have been members of the knightly class (the Uradel), or important officials or senior civil servants (the hoher Adel) since “time immemorial”. Its members hold their (usually quite extensive) lands directly from the Kaiser, acting as minor princelings in their own territories, albeit with some constraint from the Reich political system. Kaiserin Elsa’s family, the von Becks, are hoher Adel, bearing the title Grossherzog, and have extensive lands around Hanover; the Reichsführer-SS is Uradel with the title of Herzog, and has large holdings around Bremen.

Succession is down the male line: if this fails, then the lands are technically forfeit back to the Kaiser, although they may be returned to a daughter or wife if he so chooses, with the agreement of the Imperial Council. Many families of the Higher Nobility also have house laws applicable to their members, which often do not allow marriage outside their ranks, even to the lower nobility, which would be considered a morganatic alliance, except under exceptional circumstances.

Higher Nobility titles are hereditary as long as the male line endures, but when it fails, the lands are technically forfeit back to the Kaiser. However, in exceptional circumstances, the he can choose, at his discretion, to restore those lands to the family in question if he considers anyone within it deserves it. Examples would include if a wife or daughter is considered fit to inherit in lieu of a son or on the death of a husband; or the indictment of the senior line for treason, causing the title to pass to the cadet line, as happened about thirty-five years ago with the Kreuger family, where the von Reutlingen title is now held by Graf Hugo.

The ranks of the Higher Nobility in order of precedence, are as follows:

Precedence Addressed As Landholdings Eldest Son Other Children
Grossherzog (Grand Duke) Royal Highness Equivalent to small states Erbgrossherzog
(Hereditary Grand Duke)
Herzog (Duke) Highness Equivalent to counties Erbherzog
(Hereditary Duke)
Landgraf (Landgrave),
Markgraf (Margrave),
Pfalzgraf (Count Palatine)
Highness Extensive landholdings Fürst Graf/Graffin
Fürst Your Grace Large landholdings Graf Graf/Graffin
Graf (Count) Your Grace Large landholdings Graf Graf/Graffin

The Thirteen Provincial Families

The thirteen most senior families of the Higher Nobility are those which hold nominal title to the ten capitals of the ten provinces of the Fatherland, and to the three Sudetenland provincial capitals. Below them are other hoher Adel and Uradel, of which there are only twenty-two other families or individuals within the Reich. No further personages or families have been admitted to this class of the nobility in living memory. The Kaiser is nominal titleholder to Berlin and the Imperial Family, including Princess Wilhelmina, does not count in either degree of nobility, being above both, although a precedent that the rules allowing Lebensborn succession within the nobility should apply to the Imperial Family has recently been set.

The thirteen provincial families are as follows:

Grossherzog von Frankfurt (the Schneider family, hoher Adel)

Head of House is Johannes, who inherited the title unexpectedly, at the age of nineteen, on the death of his parents and paternal grandparents in a zeppelin accident about sixteen years ago, thus making him the youngest higher nobility titleholder. On the urging of his father’s two younger brothers, he married Kristina Kreuger (daughter of Hugo, Graf von Reutlingen and his wife Helga) soon afterwards, albeit more for duty than love, although they appear to have a comfortable relationship. The couple have twins – a son and a daughter – who are now about ten years old, and a second son who is three years younger.

Grossherzog von Hamburg (the von Richthofen family, Uradel)

Head of House is Arno, who is married to Julia Ekkehardt. He is another of the younger heads of house, being a mere fifty-one years old, and only retired from active service with the Luftwaffe on the death of his grandfather, the previous head of house (his father having fallen in battle when Arno was just fifteen), three years ago. He and Julia have two small daughters, Marien (7) and Ursula (5), but no male issue as yet

Grossherzog von Hanover (the von Beck family, hoher Adel)

Head of House is Klaus, who has been married to Margritte for over 140 years, and has held the title for 100 of those, making him the elder statesman of the Higher Nobility. They have three children: the Kaiserin Elsa, who is the firstborn; and two sons, Hendrik and Conrad. Both the sons are married, with sons and grandsons of their own. The Talent runs in the family, and the current Grand Duke is one of the RBTA ReichsMagieren.

Grossherzog von Prague (the von Braun family, Uradel)

Head of House is Alexander, who has been Grossherzog von Prague for close to fifty years, having inherited when he was in his mid-sixties, in RY107 when his father, Erwin, was killed on active duty with the Waffen-SS. The family has strong military connections, and its members have served in the SS in the past, although Alexander himself is Wehrmacht, specifically a General in the Heimat-Heer. His younger brother, Johann, is SS-Reichsprotektor of Sudetenland South, where the family lands are located, and his sister Maria recently became commander of the SS-Ahnenerbe. All three siblings inherited the Talent from their mother, Philippa. Alexander is married to Christina, a well known medical researcher. They had two sons and three daughters, however the eldest son was killed six years ago, and died without issue, leaving his brother, Bernhard as Alexander’s heir.

Grossherzog von Strasbourg (the von Gies family, Uradel)

Head of House is Erich, and the family is another with a strong military tradition – in this case, with the Kriegsmarine. Erich inherited the title when his father died after a long illness six years ago, just before Erich’s seventieth birthday. Prior to that, he was a serving officer in the Ausland-Kriegsmarine, holding the rank of Kapitän zur See. He has two younger brothers, both serving. He is married to Marina von Bomhardt, who brought the Talent into the house, and they have one son, Nikolas, currently doing his State Service in the military, and two daughters, one at university and one at school.

Grossherzog von Wilhelmsburg (the von Bomhardt family, hoher Adel)

Head of House is Rikart, since the death of his father, Jens – a senior member of the government and ReichsKabinett minister – in an automobile accident in April RY154. His mother, Bettina, is one of the ReichsMagieren, and she has brought the Talent into the von Bomhardt family from her own house, the Kramers. Rikart has two Talented sisters, although he is not Talented himself. One of his sisters is attached to the Berlin mage college; the other is married to Erich von Gies and works as a mage consultant, specifically in the field of security magic. Rikart, himself, holds a position within the Reich Chancellery, in the tradition of government service that the family has followed since time immemorial. He is as yet unmarried, although he is engaged to Janniver von Klaus, the Talented granddaughter of the Fürst von Dresden.

Herzog von Bremen (Reichsführer-SS Rupert Delatz, Uradel)

The RFSS has always held the title. While it is hereditary, up until recently he has had no heir. This was remedied with the official legitimisation of Stefan and Berthold Delatz, twin teenage sons of Rupert Delatz and Annifrid Ragnarsian, which came as something of a surprise, given that the couple were unmarried at the time. However the claim was ratified by the Imperial Council in June SY152 and they were considered eligible for succession under the Lebensborn clauses. With the recent tragic death of Stefan in a riding accident, Berthold has been confirmed as Erbherzog von Bremen, and Rupert’s heir.

Herzog von München (the von Strohfeldt family, Uradel)

Head of House is Werner, a career member of the SS, as were his father and grandfather before him, who has held the title for eleven years, since inheriting when he was in his mid-fifties. He has a younger brother, Manfred, in the Waffen-SS; and two younger sisters, the elder of which is married to Rutger von Klaus (Fürst von Dresden). Von Strohfeldt holds the rank of SS-Brigadeführer, splitting his time between Berlin and the SS provincial office in München. He is unmarried, although he does have a Lebensborn son, Pieter, who has been acknowledged as his heir by the Imperial Council.

Herzog von Nürnberg (the Berthelmes family, hoher Adel)

Head of House is Conrad, a former Generaloberst in the Wehrmacht, who has held the title for as long as anyone can remember. He has been married three times, once before the Reich was established, and twice since. His first marriage ended in divorce, but one son from that marriage, Joshua, has been Registered with the Imperial Council and accredited as Conrad’s heir. His second wife, Krista Irmtraud, was killed in a raid on Anklam, before it was formerly brought in to the Aussenhandel der Reichsverband. They had one daughter, Eva who is now the NSRAP Chair. His third wife is Gabriele von Freiburg, a former fighter pilot and heroine of the Reich, who he married about twenty-five years ago, and they still appear very much in love.

Herzog von Potsdam (the von Henning family, hoher Adel)

Head of House is August, who has held the title for a little over forty years. The family has been heavily involved with the legal system of the Reich since time immemorial, with members having served in a variety of legal capacities over the years, from lawyers to lawmakers, to Imperial Chief Justice in the case of August’s father, as well as sitting in the House of Representatives and the Senate. August trained as a lawyer, and was a well-known government prosecutor in his day, while his brother, Jürgen, is currently ReichsMinister for Justice and Legal Affairs. August is married to Sabine von Gisbert, with whom he has four sons and three daughters, including the journalist Mariele von Henning, and there are also a number of grandchildren.

Herzog von Stuttgart (the von Ekkehardt family, Uradel)

Head of House is Thomas, who has held the title for over fifty years, since his father, Marius, was killed on active service. His younger brother, Joachim, is High Admiral of the Ausland-Kriegsmarine, and the family have always had strong ties to the navy. Thomas is married to Beata, and they have three sons, all serving within the military, and two daughters who work in the Defence Ministry, plus a number of grandchildren, including Julia von Richthofen.

Herzogin von Wein (the von Jochen family, Uradel)

The Head of House, Sofie, is the only female titleholder among the thirteen senior houses of the Higher Nobilty. She is the widow of the former Head of House, Kaspar, who was a senior general in the Waffen-SS before his death on active service eleven years ago. Sofie also served in that organisation as a skilled logistics mage, and was made Knight of the Iron Cross for organising the orderly withdrawal of the materiel for an entire forward base which was being overrun by Sable forces led by Andrew de Lacy. It was on the strength of this that the Kaiser granted her Kaspar’s title when the male von Jochen line failed.

After she left the Waffen-SS, she worked for some time with the RBTA, as well as lecturing in transport and communications at the Reich Armed Forces Mage College. She and her husband had three daughters, all of whom are Talented. The eldest, Martina, is married to Heinrich von Henning, youngest son of the Herzog von Potsdam, and they have had two sons, the eldest of whom, Jens, is likely to inherit the von Wien title after Sofie dies, and will be expected to take the von Jochen name. The other daughters are serving in the military: one in the Heimat-Heer and the other in the Waffen-SS.

Herzog von Weimar (the Kramer family, hoher Adel)

Head of House is Markus, who is in his mid-seventies and has been Herzog von Weimar for about ten years, since his father was assassinated. His uncle, Frederic, is the current Imperial Chief Justice, but despite his position has never managed to discover who murdered his elder brother. Markus’s elder sister, Bettina, married into the von Bomhardt family about forty years ago, and his younger brother, Bernhard, is a senior mage in the Ausland-Heer. The Talent runs in the family and has been passed down to Markus and his wife Elke’s three sons, Conrad, Gustaf (Wehrmacht, who has spent time attached to the Reich Embassy in Sable) and Axel. Conrad is engaged to Rafaela von Henning, while the others remain unmarried.

The Names and Titleholders of the Remaining Higher Nobility

Family Name Current Holder Rank Titular City U/hA (T)
Karsten Gunther Graf Krakau, Bremen Province Hoher Adel
Von Alois Alexius  Landgraf Essen, Frankfurt Province Uradel
Von Eckehard Ernst Fürst Hanau, Frankfurt Province  Uradel (T)
Von Geert Johannes Graf Darmstadt, Frankfurt Province  Hoher Adel
Heydrich Tristan Landgraf Halle, Hanover Province Uradel (T)
Dietrich Marius Markgraf Elsahafen, Hanover Province Hoher Adel
Von Friedhold Hans Fürst Wolfsburg, Hanover Province Uradel
Kessler Jürgen Graf Leipzig, Hanover Province Uradel (T)
Von Hiltraud Ulrika Graffin Rosenheim, München Province Hoher Adel
Von Raeder Georg Wilhelm Adelmar Graf Klieburg, Nürnburg Province Uradel (T)
Bouhler Briemar Markgraf Rostov, Potsdam Province Hoher Adel
Kreuger* Hugo Graf Reutlingen, Stuttgart Province  Hoher Adel (T)
Von Klaus Rutger Fürst Dresden, Wein Province Uradel (T)
Von Brandt Karl-Heinz  Pfalzgraf Odessa, Weimar Province Hoher Adel (T)
Von Schell Gottfried Landgraf Wilhelmshafen,
Wilhelmsburg Province
Uradel (T)
Waldemar Henrik Landgraf Danzig, Sudetenland East Uradel (T)
Heusser Georg** Fürst Minsk, Sudetenland East Uradel
Von Wolfe Adelmar Graf  Kiev, Sudetenland East Hoher Adel (T)
Von Höpner Karl Fürst  Freiburg, Sudetenland West Hoher Adel
Bühler Caecilia Pfalzgraffin Colmar, Sudetenland West Uradel (T)
Von Gisbert Sascha Markgraf Brno, Sudetenland South Uradel (T)
Von Sybille Karin Fürstin Kladno, Sudetenland South Hoher Adel

(T) indicates that the Talent is present in the family.

*Passed to the cadet line after the senior line were indicted for treason and fled to Sable. ** Elder brother of Silvie Heusser-Delatz.