Friedrich Wilhelm III of Prussia (1770–1840)
Friedrich Wilhelm III of Prussia, born on August 3rd, 1770 in Potsdam, is the eldest son of King Friedrich Wilhelm II and Friederike von Hessen-Darmstadt. In December 1793 he married Luise zu Mecklenburg-Strelitz, the “Queen Luise”, which is still very popular today.
After the death of his father, he took the throne in 1797 and followed a strict neutrality policy towards revolutionary France. On the one hand, this policy leads to territorial gains, on the other hand, Prussia becomes dependent on France.
Nevertheless, the war against France began in 1806, which led to the collapse of the Prussian state after the defeat in the Battle of Jena / Auerstedt. As a result, the “Prussian Reforms” begin, which are closely linked to the names Freiherr vom Stein and von Hardenberg.
After the victory over Napoleon, the territory of Prussia expanded considerably, in particular the western provinces of Westphalia and the Rhine province significantly strengthened the country’s economic strength. at the same time, the reforms are not continued and a period of conservative restoration begins, which is promoted by the “Holy Alliance” with Russia and Austria.
Friedrich Wilhelm III is very popular among the population and is considered popular due to his lifestyle. Although very economical, he is considered a promoter of art and science.
He died on June 7th, 1840 in Berlin.