World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

William IV, Prince of Orange

William IV
Portrait of William IV (1751), attributed to Johann Valentin Tischbein
Stadtholder of the United Provinces
Reign 4 May 1747 – 22 October 1751
Predecessor William III
Successor William V
Prince of Orange
Reign 1 September 1711 –
22 October 1751
Predecessor John William Friso
Successor William V
Born 1 September 1711
Leeuwarden, Dutch Republic
Died 22 October 1751(1751-10-22) (aged 40)
Huis ten Bosch, The Hague, Dutch Republic
Spouse Anne of Great Britain
House House of Orange
Father John William Friso, Prince of Orange
Mother Landgravine Marie Louise of Hesse-Kassel

William IV, Prince of Orange-Nassau (Willem Karel Hendrik Friso; 1 September 1711 – 22 October 1751) was the first hereditary Stadtholder of the United Provinces.[1]


  • Early life 1
  • Marriage and children 2
  • Later life 3
  • Ancestry 4
  • Notes 5
  • External links 6

Early life

William was born in Leeuwarden, Netherlands, the son of John William Friso, Prince of Orange, head of the Frisian branch of the House of Orange-Nassau, and of his wife Landgravine Marie Louise of Hesse-Kassel (or Hesse-Cassel). He was born six weeks after the death of his father.

William succeeded his father as Stadtholder of Friesland and also, under the regency of his mother until 1731, as Stadtholder of Groningen. In 1722 he was elected Stadtholder of Guelders.

Marriage and children

In 1720 William was named the 549th Caroline of Ansbach. William and Anne had five children:

Later life

Portrait of William, 1751

In 1739 William inherited the estates formerly owned by the Nassau-Dillenburg branch of his family, and in 1743 he inherited those formerly owned by the Nassau-Siegen branch of his family.

In April 1747 the French army entered Flanders. In an effort to quell internal strife amongst the various factions, the States General of the Netherlands appointed William to the hereditary position of General Stadtholder of all seven of the United Provinces. William and his family moved from Leeuwarden to The Hague. William first met Duke Louis Ernest of Brunswick-Lüneburg in 1747, and 2 years later appointed him field marshal of the Dutch States Army, which later led to his being one of the regents to William's heir. On 4 May 1747 he was confirmed as Hereditary Stattholder of the United Provinces (Netherlands).

William IV was considered an attractive, educated and accomplished prince in his prime. Although he had little experience in state affairs, William was at first popular with the people. He stopped the practice of indirect taxation by which independent contractors managed to make large sums for themselves. Nevertheless, he was also a Director-General of the Dutch East India Company, and his alliance with the business class deepened while the disparity between rich and poor grew.

William served as General Stadtholder of all the Netherlands until his death in 1751 at The Hague.

The city of Orangeburg, SC is named after him.


8. William Frederick, Count of Nassau-Dietz
4. Henry Casimir II, Count of Nassau-Dietz
9. Princess Albertine Agnes of Nassau
2. John William Friso, Prince of Orange
10. John George II, Prince of Anhalt-Dessau
5. Princess Henriëtte Amalia of Anhalt-Dessau
11. Princess Henriette Catherine of Nassau
1. William IV, Prince of Orange
12. William VI, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel
6. Charles I, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel
13. Margravine Hedwig Sophia of Brandenburg
3. Landgravine Marie Louise of Hesse-Kassel
14. Jacob, Duke of Courland
7. Princess Maria Amalia of Courland
15. Margravine Louise Charlotte of Brandenburg


  1. ^ Suzanna van Dijk; Jo Nesbitt (1 January 2004). I Have Heard about You: Foreign Women's Writing Crossing the Dutch Border : from Sappho to Selma Lagerlöf. Uitgeverij Verloren. p. 168.  

External links

  • Media related to at Wikimedia Commons
William IV, Prince of Orange
Cadet branch of the House of Nassau
Born: 1 September 1711 Died: 22 October 1751
Dutch nobility
Preceded by
John William Friso
Prince of Orange
Title next held by
William V
Regnal titles
Preceded by
John William Friso
Prince of Orange-Nassau
Baron of Breda

Succeeded by
William V
Preceded by
Francis Alexander
Prince of Nassau-Hadamar
Preceded by
Prince of Nassau-Dillenburg
Preceded by
Frederick William II
Prince of Nassau-Siegen
Political offices
Preceded by
John William Friso
Stadtholder of
Friesland and Groningen

Titles obsolete
merger of all stadtholderships
Title last held by
William III
Stadtholder of Guelders
Stadtholder of Holland, Zeeland,
Utrecht, and Overijssel

New title General Stadtholder
of the United Provinces

Succeeded by
William V
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.