Reich: Nobility – Lower
The Lower Nobility (Niedriger Adel)
Unlike the Higher Nobility, which is closed and declining in numbers, the Kaiser can appoint people to the Lower Nobility as he wishes (although his decisions are usually formally ratified by the Imperial Council), in recognition of great service to the Fatherland, excellence in a certain field, etc, etc, rather than being historically noble. However, once those ranks have been obtained, they become hereditary, with the exception of Herzog and Edler/Edle, which are non-hereditary. Succession within the Lower Nobility, while primarily down the male line, does allow daughters to inherit the title if there are no male heirs left. In addition, women can be raised to the title of Edle or Ritterin in their own right.
Usually, a certain level of income, wealth, or social standing is necessary for appointment to these ranks, so as to demonstrate the ability of the person ennobled to maintain himself or herself at a proper level. However, lands are occasionally gifted when an individual is raised to the niedriger Adel.
Members of the Lower Nobility include Reichskanzler Georg Emmerich, Graf von Kassel; Archmage Tobias de Vries, Herzog von Reichenbach; ReichsMagus Gruppenführer Michael Lorenz, Herzog von Winterburg (non-hereditary); Major Hans Rasch, Imperial Champion, Ritter von Berlin; and ReichsMagus General Raimund Landau, Ritter von Dransfeld; as well as Reinhart Kastel, Graf von Bethel and head of IG Farben; and Marius Ottakar, Edler von Rostenow and head of the RDP.
Andreas Delatz was the Niedriger Adel Herzog von Syke until his fall from grace, and his title has been revoked by the Kaiser.
The ranks of the Lower Nobility, in order of precedence, are as follows:
|Precedence||Addressed As||Eldest Son||Other Children|
|Herzog (Duke)||Serene Highness||Non-hereditary||n/a|
|Graf (Count)||Your Grace||Graf||Baron/Baronesse|
|Baron/Freiherr|| My Lord/Lady
|Ritter/Ritterin||My Lord/Lady||Ritter Edler/Edle||Children do not inherit the title|