Johann II, Prince of Liechtenstein

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Johann II
Portrait by John Quincy Adams, 1908
Prince of Liechtenstein
Reign12 November 1858 – 11 February 1929
PredecessorAloys II
SuccessorFranz I
Born(1840-10-05)5 October 1840
Eisgrub, Margraviate of Moravia, Austrian Empire
Died11 February 1929(1929-02-11) (aged 88)
Valtice, First Czechoslovak Republic
Church of the Nativity of the Virgin Mary, Vranov
Johann Maria Franz Placidus
FatherAloys II, Prince of Liechtenstein
MotherCountess Franziska Kinsky of Wchinitz and Tettau

Johann II (German: Johann Maria Franz Placidus; 5 October 1840 – 11 February 1929), also known as Johann II the Good (Johann II der Gute), was the Prince of Liechtenstein between 1858 and 1929. His reign of 70 years and 91 days is the second-longest of any monarch in European history, after that of Louis XIV of France, and third-longest overall after Louis XIV and Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama IX) of Thailand.

Early life[edit]

Johann II was the elder son of Aloys II, Prince of Liechtenstein and Countess Franziska Kinsky of Wchinitz and Tettau. He ascended to the throne shortly after his 18th birthday. His reign is the longest precisely documented tenure of any European monarch since antiquity in which a regent (that is, a regent of a minority regency) was never employed[1] although his mother acted as his regent from 10 February 1859 to November 1860,[2][3] She was not the head of a minor regency, but she was appointed by her son to fulfill his duties because he wished to finish his education before he began his rule.

Law and reform[edit]

In 1862, Johann II issued Liechtenstein's first constitution. Later, after Liechtenstein left the German Confederation in 1866 and after World War I, Johann II granted a new constitution in 1921. It granted considerable political rights to common Liechtensteiners and made the principality a constitutional monarchy. The constitution has survived but with revisions, most notably in 2003.

Liechtenstein left the German Confederation in 1866. Not long afterward, the Liechtenstein Army was abolished as it was regarded as an unnecessary expense.

Foreign affairs[edit]

Johann II somewhat cooled relations with Liechtenstein's traditional ally, Austria-Hungary and its successor states, to forge closer relations with Switzerland, particularly after World War I. Liechtenstein was neutral during the war, which broke Liechtenstein's alliance with Austria-Hungary and led it to go into a customs union with Switzerland. In 1924, late in Johann's reign, the Swiss franc became Liechtenstein's official currency.[4]

Patron of arts[edit]

Johann II added much to the Liechtenstein Princely Collections. Although considered a prominent patron of the arts and sciences during his long reign,[5] Johann II was also considered to be rather unsociable and did not participate in social events. He never married or had any children, like several other members of his family.[6]

Between 1905 and 1920, Schloss Vaduz was renovated and expanded. Prince Johann II did not live in the castle or even in Liechtenstein, but his successors would make the castle their home in 1938.

Upon his death in 1929, Johann II was succeeded by his brother Franz I.




  1. ^ – Liechtenstein. Retrieved 16 December 2007
  2. ^ Peter Geiger: Geschichte des Fürstentums Liechtenstein 1848 bis 1866. In: Jahrbuch des Historischen Vereins für das Fürstentum Liechtenstein. Band 70. Vaduz 1970, S. 242 ff.
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 1 August 2012. Retrieved 11 November 2011.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ Yellow Pages of Liechtenstein Archived 6 October 2007 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved 16 December 2007
  5. ^ Portal of the Principality of Liechtenstein – Princely House – Prince Johann II. Retrieved 16 December 2007
  6. ^ Prince Johann II. Retrieved 16 December 2007
  7. ^ Staat Hannover (1865). Hof- und Staatshandbuch für das Königreich Hannover: 1865. Berenberg. p. 79.
  8. ^ Boettger, T. F. "Chevaliers de la Toisón d'Or – Knights of the Golden Fleece". La Confrérie Amicale. Retrieved 25 June 2019.
  9. ^ "A Szent István Rend tagjai" Archived 22 December 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ Hof- und Staats-Handbuch des Königreichs Bayern (1908), "Königliche Orden" p. 7
  11. ^ Justus Perthes, Almanach de Gotha (1922) p. 55

External links[edit]

Johann II, Prince of Liechtenstein
Born: 5 October 1840 Died: 11 February 1929
Regnal titles
Preceded by Prince of Liechtenstein
Succeeded by