Prince

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Encyclopedia
Prince is a general term for a ruler, monarch
Monarch
A monarch is the person who heads a monarchy. This is a form of government in which a state or polity is ruled or controlled by an individual who typically inherits the throne by birth and occasionally rules for life or until abdication...

 or member of a monarch's or former monarch's family, and is a hereditary title
Hereditary Title
Hereditary titles, in a general sense, are titles, positions or styles that are hereditary and thus tend or are bound to remain in particular families....

 in the nobility
Nobility
Nobility is a social class which possesses more acknowledged privileges or eminence than members of most other classes in a society, membership therein typically being hereditary. The privileges associated with nobility may constitute substantial advantages over or relative to non-nobles, or may be...

 of some European states. The feminine equivalent is a princess
Princess
Princess is the feminine form of prince . Most often, the term has been used for the consort of a prince, or his daughters....

. The English word derives, via the French word prince, from the Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 noun princeps
Princeps
Princeps is a Latin word meaning "first in time or order; the first, chief, the most eminent, distinguished, or noble; the first man, first person."...

, from primus(first) + capio (to seize), meaning "the chief, most distinguished, ruler, prince".

Historical background



The Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 word prīnceps (older Latin *prīsmo-kaps, literally "the one who takes the first [place/position]"), became the usual title of the informal leader of the Roman senate
Roman Senate
The Senate of the Roman Republic was a political institution in the ancient Roman Republic, however, it was not an elected body, but one whose members were appointed by the consuls, and later by the censors. After a magistrate served his term in office, it usually was followed with automatic...

 some centuries before the transition to empire
Roman Empire
The Roman Empire was the post-Republican period of the ancient Roman civilization, characterised by an autocratic form of government and large territorial holdings in Europe and around the Mediterranean....

, the princeps senatus
Princeps senatus
The princeps senatus was the first member by precedence of the Roman Senate. Although officially out of the cursus honorum and owning no imperium, this office brought enormous prestige to the senator holding it.-Overview:...

.

Emperor Augustus established the formal position of monarch on the basis of principate
Principate
The Principate is the first period of the Roman Empire, extending from the beginning of the reign of Caesar Augustus to the Crisis of the Third Century, after which it was replaced with the Dominate. The Principate is characterized by a concerted effort on the part of the Emperors to preserve the...

, not dominion
Dominate
The Dominate was the "despotic" latter phase of government in the ancient Roman Empire from the conclusion of the Third Century Crisis of 235–284 until the formal date of the collapse of the Western Empire in AD 476. It followed the period known as the Principate...

. He also tasked his grandsons as summer rulers of the city when most of the government were on holiday in the country or attending religious rituals, and, for that task, granted them the title of princeps.

The title has generic and substantive meanings:
  • generically, prince refers to members of a family that ruled by hereditary right
    Monarchy
    A monarchy is a form of government in which the office of head of state is usually held until death or abdication and is often hereditary and includes a royal house. In some cases, the monarch is elected...

    , the title being used to refer either to sovereigns or to cadets
    Cadet (genealogy)
    In genealogy, a cadet is a younger son, as opposed to the firstborn heir. Compare puisne.- Etymology :The word is recorded in English since 1634, originally for a young son, identical to the French, which is itself derived from the gascon Occitan capdet "captain, chief", in turn from the Late...

     of a sovereign's family. The term may be broadly used of persons in various cultures, continents or eras. In Europe, it is the title legally borne by dynastic cadets in monarchies, and borne by courtesy by members of formerly reigning dynasties.
  • as a substantive title
    Substantive title
    A substantive title is a title of nobility or royalty held by someone , which was acquired either by direct grant or inheritance...

    , a prince was a monarch of the lowest rank
    Nobility
    Nobility is a social class which possesses more acknowledged privileges or eminence than members of most other classes in a society, membership therein typically being hereditary. The privileges associated with nobility may constitute substantial advantages over or relative to non-nobles, or may be...

     in post-Napoleon
    Napoleon I of France
    Napoleon Bonaparte was a French military and political leader during the latter stages of the French Revolution.As Napoleon I, he was Emperor of the French from 1804 to 1815...

    ic Europe, e.g. Princes of, respectively, Andorra
    Andorra
    Andorra , officially the Principality of Andorra , also called the Principality of the Valleys of Andorra, , is a small landlocked country in southwestern Europe, located in the eastern Pyrenees mountains and bordered by Spain and France. It is the sixth smallest nation in Europe having an area of...

    , Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen
    Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen
    -Noble jurisdictions:Prince Karl Eitel of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen, and descendants of his nephew Ferdinand ruled over the Kingdom of Romania, as Karl Eitel did not have children...

    , Mingrelia, Monaco
    Monaco
    Monaco , officially the Principality of Monaco , is a sovereign city state on the French Riviera. It is bordered on three sides by its neighbour, France, and its centre is about from Italy. Its area is with a population of 35,986 as of 2011 and is the most densely populated country in the...

    , Waldeck and Pyrmont, Wallachia
    Wallachia
    Wallachia or Walachia is a historical and geographical region of Romania. It is situated north of the Danube and south of the Southern Carpathians...

    , etc.
  • also substantively, the title was granted by pope
    Pope
    The Pope is the Bishop of Rome, a position that makes him the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church . In the Catholic Church, the Pope is regarded as the successor of Saint Peter, the Apostle...

    s and secular monarchs to specific individuals and to the heads of some high-ranking European families who, however, never exercised dynastic sovereignty and whose cadets are not entitled to share the princely title, e.g. de Beauvau-Craon, Colonna, von Bismarck
    Otto von Bismarck
    Otto Eduard Leopold, Prince of Bismarck, Duke of Lauenburg , simply known as Otto von Bismarck, was a Prussian-German statesman whose actions unified Germany, made it a major player in world affairs, and created a balance of power that kept Europe at peace after 1871.As Minister President of...

    , von Dohna-Schlobitten, von Eulenburg, de Faucigny-Lucinge, von Lichnowsky, von Pless, Ruffo di Calabria, (de Talleyrand) von Sagan
    Sagan
    -Places:* German name of Żagań, Poland and the Silesian Duchy of Żagań* Sagan, Ethiopia* The Sagan River of Ethiopia* Şağan, Azerbaijan-People:* Carl Sagan, American astronomer, science writer, and advocate for rationalism and skepticism...

    , van Ursel, etc.
  • generically, cadets of some non-sovereign families whose head bears the non-dynastic title of prince (or, less commonly, duke
    Duke
    A duke or duchess is a member of the nobility, historically of highest rank below the monarch, and historically controlling a duchy...

    ) were sometimes also authorized to use the princely title, e.g. von Carolath-Beuthen, de Broglie, Demidoff di San Donato, Lieven
    Lieven
    The Lievens are one of the oldest and noblest families of Baltic Germans. They claim descent from Caupo of Turaida , the Livonian quasi rex who converted to Christianity in 1186, when Bishop Meinhard attempted to Christianize the region...

    , de Mérode
    House of Merode
    The princely house of Merode is one of the most important houses of the Belgian nobility.The surname of the family and the name of the House is mostly written de Mérode in but was originally von Merode due to the German descent of the House...

    , Pignatelli, Radziwill
    Radziwill
    The Radziwiłł family is an noble family of Lithuanian origin. The descendants of Kristinas Astikas, a close associate of the 14th century Lithuanian ruler Vytautas, were highly prominent for centuries, first in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, later in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and the...

    , von Wrede
    Wrede
    Wrede may refer to:*Fabian Wrede , an advisor to King Charles XI, King of Sweden**Carl Gustaf Fabian Wrede, governor of Vaasa province in Finland.**Mathilda Wrede , evangelist and a baroness, daughter of Fabian...

    , Yussopov, etc.
  • substantively, the heirs apparent
    Heir apparent
    An heir apparent or heiress apparent is a person who is first in line of succession and cannot be displaced from inheriting, except by a change in the rules of succession....

     in some monarchies use a specific princely title associated with a territory within the monarch's realm
    Realm
    A realm is a dominion of a monarch or other sovereign ruler.The Old French word reaume, modern French royaume, was the word first adopted in English; the fixed modern spelling does not appear until the beginning of the 17th century...

    , e.g. the Princes of, respectively, Asturias (Spain), Grão Pará (Brazil, formerly), Orange (Netherlands), Viana (Navarre, formerly), Wales (UK), etc.
  • substantively, it became the fashion from the 17th century for the heirs apparent
    Heir apparent
    An heir apparent or heiress apparent is a person who is first in line of succession and cannot be displaced from inheriting, except by a change in the rules of succession....

     of the leading ducal
    Duke
    A duke or duchess is a member of the nobility, historically of highest rank below the monarch, and historically controlling a duchy...

     families to assume a princely title, associated with a seigneurie in the family's possession. These titles were borne by courtesy and preserved by tradition, not law, e.g. the princes de, respectively, Bidache (Gramont), Marcillac (La Rochefoucauld), Tonnay-Charente (Mortemart), Poix (Noailles), Léon (Rohan-Chabot),

Prince as generic for ruler


The original, but now less common use of the word, originated in the application of the Latin word princeps
Princeps
Princeps is a Latin word meaning "first in time or order; the first, chief, the most eminent, distinguished, or noble; the first man, first person."...

, from Roman
Roman law
Roman law is the legal system of ancient Rome, and the legal developments which occurred before the 7th century AD — when the Roman–Byzantine state adopted Greek as the language of government. The development of Roman law comprises more than a thousand years of jurisprudence — from the Twelve...

, more precisely Byzantine
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

 law
Law
Law is a system of rules and guidelines which are enforced through social institutions to govern behavior, wherever possible. It shapes politics, economics and society in numerous ways and serves as a social mediator of relations between people. Contract law regulates everything from buying a bus...

, and the classical system of government that was the European feudal
Feudalism
Feudalism was a set of legal and military customs in medieval Europe that flourished between the 9th and 15th centuries, which, broadly defined, was a system for ordering society around relationships derived from the holding of land in exchange for service or labour.Although derived from the...

 society. In this sense, a prince is a ruler of a territory which is sovereign
Sovereign
A sovereign is the supreme lawmaking authority within its jurisdiction.Sovereign may also refer to:*Monarch, the sovereign of a monarchy*Sovereign Bank, banking institution in the United States*Sovereign...

, or quasi
Quasi
Quasi is an American indie rock band formed in Portland, Oregon in 1993 by ex-husband and wife Sam Coomes and Janet Weiss . Since 2007 the group has been a trio, following the addition of bassist Joanna Bolme.-History:In 1990 , Coomes, Weiss, and Brad Pedinov formed the band Motorgoat...

-sovereign, i.e., exercising substantial (though not all) prerogatives associated with monarchs of independent nations, as was common, for instance, within the historical boundaries of the Holy Roman Empire
Holy Roman Empire
The Holy Roman Empire was a realm that existed from 962 to 1806 in Central Europe.It was ruled by the Holy Roman Emperor. Its character changed during the Middle Ages and the Early Modern period, when the power of the emperor gradually weakened in favour of the princes...

. In medieval and Early Modern Europe
Early modern Europe
Early modern Europe is the term used by historians to refer to a period in the history of Europe which spanned the centuries between the end of the Middle Ages and the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, roughly the late 15th century to the late 18th century...

, there were as many as two hundred such territories, especially in Italy, Germany, and Gaelic Ireland
Gaelic Ireland
Gaelic Ireland is the name given to the period when a Gaelic political order existed in Ireland. The order continued to exist after the arrival of the Anglo-Normans until about 1607 AD...

. In this sense, "prince" is used of any and all rulers, regardless of actual title or precise rank. This is the Renaissance
Renaissance
The Renaissance was a cultural movement that spanned roughly the 14th to the 17th century, beginning in Italy in the Late Middle Ages and later spreading to the rest of Europe. The term is also used more loosely to refer to the historical era, but since the changes of the Renaissance were not...

 use of the term found in Niccolò Machiavelli
Niccolò Machiavelli
Niccolò di Bernardo dei Machiavelli was an Italian historian, philosopher, humanist, and writer based in Florence during the Renaissance. He is one of the main founders of modern political science. He was a diplomat, political philosopher, playwright, and a civil servant of the Florentine Republic...

's famous work, Il Principe
The Prince
The Prince is a political treatise by the Italian diplomat, historian and political theorist Niccolò Machiavelli. From correspondence a version appears to have been distributed in 1513, using a Latin title, De Principatibus . But the printed version was not published until 1532, five years after...

.

As a title, by the end of the medieval era, prince was borne by rulers of territories that were either substantially smaller than or exercised fewer of the rights of sovereignty than did emperors and kings. A lord
Lord
Lord is a title with various meanings. It can denote a prince or a feudal superior . The title today is mostly used in connection with the peerage of the United Kingdom or its predecessor countries, although some users of the title do not themselves hold peerages, and use it 'by courtesy'...

 of even a quite small territory might come to be referred to as a prince before the 13th century, either from translations of a native title into the Latin princeps (as for the hereditary ruler of Wales
Wales
Wales is a country that is part of the United Kingdom and the island of Great Britain, bordered by England to its east and the Atlantic Ocean and Irish Sea to its west. It has a population of three million, and a total area of 20,779 km²...

), or when the lord's territory was allodial
Allodial title
Allodial title constitutes ownership of real property that is independent of any superior landlord, but it should not be confused with anarchy as the owner of allodial land is not independent of his sovereign...

. The lord of an allodium
Allodial title
Allodial title constitutes ownership of real property that is independent of any superior landlord, but it should not be confused with anarchy as the owner of allodial land is not independent of his sovereign...

 owned his lands and exercised prerogatives over the subjects in his territory absolutely, owing no feudal homage or duty as a vassal to a liege lord
Feudalism
Feudalism was a set of legal and military customs in medieval Europe that flourished between the 9th and 15th centuries, which, broadly defined, was a system for ordering society around relationships derived from the holding of land in exchange for service or labour.Although derived from the...

, nor being subject to any higher jurisdiction. Most small territories designated as principalities during feudal eras were allodial, e.g. the Princedom of Dombes
Dombes
The Dombes is an area in South-Eastern France, once an independent municipality, formerly part of the province of Burgundy, and now a district comprised in the département of Ain, and bounded W. by the Saône River, by the Rhône, E. by the Ain and N...

.

Lords who exercised lawful authority over territories and people within a feudal hierarchy were also sometimes regarded as princes in the general sense, especially if they held the rank of count
Count
A count or countess is an aristocratic nobleman in European countries. The word count came into English from the French comte, itself from Latin comes—in its accusative comitem—meaning "companion", and later "companion of the emperor, delegate of the emperor". The adjective form of the word is...

 or higher. This is attested in some surviving styles
Style (manner of address)
A style of office, or honorific, is a legal, official, or recognized title. A style, by tradition or law, precedes a reference to a person who holds a post or political office, and is sometimes used to refer to the office itself. An honorific can also be awarded to an individual in a personal...

 for e.g., British earls, marquess
Marquess
A marquess or marquis is a nobleman of hereditary rank in various European peerages and in those of some of their former colonies. The term is also used to translate equivalent oriental styles, as in imperial China, Japan, and Vietnam...

es, and duke
Duke
A duke or duchess is a member of the nobility, historically of highest rank below the monarch, and historically controlling a duchy...

s are still addressed by the Crown
The Crown
The Crown is a corporation sole that in the Commonwealth realms and any provincial or state sub-divisions thereof represents the legal embodiment of governance, whether executive, legislative, or judicial...

 on ceremonial
Ceremony
A ceremony is an event of ritual significance, performed on a special occasion. The word may be of Etruscan origin.-Ceremonial occasions:A ceremony may mark a rite of passage in a human life, marking the significance of, for example:* birth...

 occasions as high and noble princes (cf. Royal and noble styles
Royal and noble styles
Styles represent the fashion by which monarchs and noblemen are properly addressed. Throughout history, many different styles were used, with little standardization...

).

In parts of the Holy Roman Empire in which primogeniture
Primogeniture
Primogeniture is the right, by law or custom, of the firstborn to inherit the entire estate, to the exclusion of younger siblings . Historically, the term implied male primogeniture, to the exclusion of females...

 did not prevail (i.e. Germany), all legitimate agnates
Patrilineality
Patrilineality is a system in which one belongs to one's father's lineage. It generally involves the inheritance of property, names or titles through the male line as well....

 had an equal right to the family's hereditary titles. While this meant that offices, such as emperor
Emperor
An emperor is a monarch, usually the sovereign ruler of an empire or another type of imperial realm. Empress, the female equivalent, may indicate an emperor's wife or a woman who rules in her own right...

, king
King
- Centers of population :* King, Ontario, CanadaIn USA:* King, Indiana* King, North Carolina* King, Lincoln County, Wisconsin* King, Waupaca County, Wisconsin* King County, Washington- Moving-image works :Television:...

, and elector could only be legally occupied by one dynast at a time, holders of such other titles as duke
Duke
A duke or duchess is a member of the nobility, historically of highest rank below the monarch, and historically controlling a duchy...

, margrave
Margrave
A margrave or margravine was a medieval hereditary nobleman with military responsibilities in a border province of a kingdom. Border provinces usually had more exposure to military incursions from the outside, compared to interior provinces, and thus a margrave usually had larger and more active...

, landgrave
Landgrave
Landgrave was a title used in the Holy Roman Empire and later on by its former territories. The title refers to a count who had feudal duty directly to the Holy Roman Emperor...

, count palatine
Count palatine
Count palatine is a high noble title, used to render several comital styles, in some cases also shortened to Palatine, which can have other meanings as well.-Comes palatinus:...

, and prince could only differentiate themselves by adding the name of their appanage
Appanage
An apanage or appanage or is the grant of an estate, titles, offices, or other things of value to the younger male children of a sovereign, who would otherwise have no inheritance under the system of primogeniture...

 to the family's original title. Not only did this tend to proliferate unwieldy titles (e.g. Princess Katherine of Anhalt-Zerbst
Catherine II of Russia
Catherine II, also known as Catherine the Great , Empress of Russia, was born in Stettin, Pomerania, Prussia on as Sophie Friederike Auguste von Anhalt-Zerbst-Dornburg...

 ane Karl, Count Palatine of Zweibrücken-Neukastell-Kleeburg), but as agnatic primogeniture gradually became the norm in the Holy Roman Empire by the end of the 18th century, another means of distinguishing the monarch from other members of his dynasty became necessary. Gradual substitution of the title of Prinz for the monarch's title of Fürst occurred, and became customary in all German dynasties except in the grand duchies of Mecklenburg
Mecklenburg
Mecklenburg is a historical region in northern Germany comprising the western and larger part of the federal-state Mecklenburg-Vorpommern...

 and Oldenburg
Oldenburg
Oldenburg is an independent city in Lower Saxony, Germany. It is situated in the western part of the state between the cities of Bremen and Groningen, Netherlands, at the Hunte river. It has a population of 160,279 which makes it the fourth biggest city in Lower Saxony after Hanover, Braunschweig...

. Both Prinz and Fürst are translated into English as "prince", but they reflect not only different but mutually exclusive terms.

This distinction had evolved before the 18th century (in most families: Liechtenstein long remained an exception, cadets and females using Fürst/Fürstin into the 19th century) for dynasties headed by a Fürst in Germany. The custom spread through the Continent
Continental Europe
Continental Europe, also referred to as mainland Europe or simply the Continent, is the continent of Europe, explicitly excluding European islands....

 to such an extent that a renowned imperial general who belonged to a cadet branch
Cadet branch
Cadet branch is a term in genealogy to describe the lineage of the descendants of the younger sons of a monarch or patriarch. In the ruling dynasties and noble families of much of Europe and Asia, the family's major assets – titles, realms, fiefs, property and income – have...

 of a reigning ducal family, remains best known to history by the generic dynastic title, Prince Eugene of Savoy
Prince Eugene of Savoy
Prince Eugene of Savoy , was one of the most successful military commanders in modern European history, rising to the highest offices of state at the Imperial court in Vienna. Born in Paris to aristocratic Italian parents, Eugene grew up around the French court of King Louis XIV...

. Note that the princely title was used as a prefix to his Christian name, which also became customary.

Cadets of France's princes étrangers
Foreign Prince
Foreign Prince is the English translation of prince étranger, a high, though somewhat ambiguous, rank at the French royal court of the ancien régime.-Terminology:...

 began to affect similar usage but when, for example, the House of La Tour d'Auvergne's ruling dukes of Bouillon
Bouillon
Bouillon is a municipality in Belgium. It lies in the country's Walloon Region and Luxembourg Province.The municipality, which covers 149.09 km², had 5,477 inhabitants, giving a population density of 36.7 inhabitants per km².- History :...

, attempted to use the same style, it was initially resisted by historians such as Père Anselme
Père Anselme
Père Anselme was a French genealogist.He was born in Paris in 1625. As a layman his name was Pierre Guibours...

 – who, however, willingly recognized use of territorial titles, i.e. he accepts that the ducal heir apparent is known as prince de Bouillon, but would record in 1728 only that the heir's cousin, the comte d'Oliergues was "known as the Prince Frederick" ("dit le prince Frédéric").

The post-medieval rank of gefürsteter Graf (princely count) embraced but elevated the German equivalent of the intermediate French, English and Spanish nobles. In Germany, these nobles rose to dynastic status by preserving from the Imperial crown (de jure
De jure
De jure is an expression that means "concerning law", as contrasted with de facto, which means "concerning fact".De jure = 'Legally', De facto = 'In fact'....

 after the Peace of Westphalia
Peace of Westphalia
The Peace of Westphalia was a series of peace treaties signed between May and October of 1648 in Osnabrück and Münster. These treaties ended the Thirty Years' War in the Holy Roman Empire, and the Eighty Years' War between Spain and the Dutch Republic, with Spain formally recognizing the...

 in 1648) the exercise of such sovereign prerogatives as the mint
Mint (coin)
A mint is an industrial facility which manufactures coins for currency.The history of mints correlates closely with the history of coins. One difference is that the history of the mint is usually closely tied to the political situation of an era...

ing of money; the muster
Muster (military)
The term muster designates the process or event for the of accounting for members in a military unit. Within the United States Army Reserve, it is an annual event used for screening purposes.-Historical:...

 of military troops and the right to wage war and contract treaties
Treaty
A treaty is an express agreement under international law entered into by actors in international law, namely sovereign states and international organizations. A treaty may also be known as an agreement, protocol, covenant, convention or exchange of letters, among other terms...

; local judicial authority and constabular
Constabulary
Constabulary may have several definitions.*A civil, non-paramilitary force consisting of police officers called constables. This is the usual definition in Britain, in which all county police forces once bore the title...

 enforcement; and the habit of inter-marrying with sovereign dynasties. Eventually, these titles came to be more highly valued than that of Fürst
Fürst
Fürst is a German title of nobility, usually translated into English as Prince.The term refers to the head of a principality and is distinguished from the son of a monarch, who is referred to as Prinz...

 itself, and by the 19th century, their cadets would become known as Prinzen.

Prince of the blood



Currently, the husband of a queen regnant
Queen regnant
A queen regnant is a female monarch who reigns in her own right, in contrast to a queen consort, who is the wife of a reigning king. An empress regnant is a female monarch who reigns in her own right over an empire....

 is usually titled prince or prince consort
Prince consort
A prince consort is the husband of a queen regnant who is not himself a king in his own right.Current examples include the Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh , and Prince Henrik of Denmark .In recognition of his status, a prince consort may be given a formal...

, whereas the wives of male monarchs take the female equivalent of their husbands' title—the same as is used when a female mounts the throne in her own right, such as empress or queen. In Brazil, Spain and Portugal, however, the husband of a female monarch was accorded the masculine equivalent of her title—at least after she bore him a child. In previous epochs, husbands of queens regnant often shared their consort
Prince consort
A prince consort is the husband of a queen regnant who is not himself a king in his own right.Current examples include the Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh , and Prince Henrik of Denmark .In recognition of his status, a prince consort may be given a formal...

s' regnal title and rank.

But in cultures which allow the ruler to have several wives (e.g. four in Islam
Islam
Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

) and/or official concubines, for these women sometimes collectively referred to as harem
Harem
Harem refers to the sphere of women in what is usually a polygynous household and their enclosed quarters which are forbidden to men...

 there are often specific rules determining their hierarchy and a variety of titles, which may distinguish between those whose offspring can be in line for the succeesion or not, or specifically who is mother to the heir to the throne. (E.g. in English language the title "The Prince/Princess" refers to sons/daughters of the ruling monarch)

To complicate matters, the style His Royal Highness, a prefix
Prefix
A prefix is an affix which is placed before the root of a word. Particularly in the study of languages,a prefix is also called a preformative, because it alters the form of the words to which it is affixed.Examples of prefixes:...

 normally accompanying the title of a dynastic prince, of royal or imperial rank, that is, can be awarded separately (as a compromise or consolation prize, in some sense).

Although the definition above is the one that is most commonly understood, there are also different systems. Depending on country, epoch, and translation, other meanings of prince are possible.

Over the centuries foreign-language titles such as Italian
Italian language
Italian is a Romance language spoken mainly in Europe: Italy, Switzerland, San Marino, Vatican City, by minorities in Malta, Monaco, Croatia, Slovenia, France, Libya, Eritrea, and Somalia, and by immigrant communities in the Americas and Australia...

 principe, French
French language
French is a Romance language spoken as a first language in France, the Romandy region in Switzerland, Wallonia and Brussels in Belgium, Monaco, the regions of Quebec and Acadia in Canada, and by various communities elsewhere. Second-language speakers of French are distributed throughout many parts...

 prince, German
German language
German is a West Germanic language, related to and classified alongside English and Dutch. With an estimated 90 – 98 million native speakers, German is one of the world's major languages and is the most widely-spoken first language in the European Union....

 Prinz (son of a king or emperor) Fürst (peer), Russian
Russian language
Russian is a Slavic language used primarily in Russia, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. It is an unofficial but widely spoken language in Ukraine, Moldova, Latvia, Turkmenistan and Estonia and, to a lesser extent, the other countries that were once constituent republics...

 kniaz, etc., are usually translated as prince in English.

Some princely titles are derived from that of national rulers, such as tsarevich from tsar
Tsar
Tsar is a title used to designate certain European Slavic monarchs or supreme rulers. As a system of government in the Tsardom of Russia and Russian Empire, it is known as Tsarist autocracy, or Tsarism...

. Other examples are (e)mirza
Mirza
Mirza , is of Persian origin, denoting the rank of a high nobleman or Prince. It is usually translated into English as a royal or imperial Prince of the Blood...

(da), khanzada
Khanzada
The Khanzada, or Khanzadah, is a subdivision of Rajputs, now found mainly in the Rajasthan, Haryana and Western Uttar Pradesh of India; and Sindh, Punjab provinces of Pakistan. Khanzadahs, the royal family of Muslim Jadon Rajputs, accepted Islam on their association with the Sufi Saints...

, nawabzada, sahibzada, shahzada, sultanzada (all using the Persian patronymic suffix -zada, meaning son, descendant).

However, some princely titles develop in unusual ways, such as adoption of a style for dynasts which is not pegged to the ruler's title, but rather continues an old tradition (e.g. grand duke
Grand Duke
The title grand duke is used in Western Europe and particularly in Germanic countries for provincial sovereigns. Grand duke is of a protocolary rank below a king but higher than a sovereign duke. Grand duke is also the usual and established translation of grand prince in languages which do not...

 in Romanov
Romanov
The House of Romanov was the second and last imperial dynasty to rule over Russia, reigning from 1613 until the February Revolution abolished the crown in 1917...

 Russia), claims dynastic succession to a lost monarchy (e.g. prince de Tarente for the La Trémoïlle heirs
La Trémoille
Members of the House of La Trémoille, were part of an old French family which derives its name from a village in the department of Vienne....

 to the Neapolitan throne
Kingdom of Sicily
The Kingdom of Sicily was a state that existed in the south of Italy from its founding by Roger II in 1130 until 1816. It was a successor state of the County of Sicily, which had been founded in 1071 during the Norman conquest of southern Italy...

, or is simply assumed by fiat (e.g. prince Français by the House of Bonaparte).

Specific titles



In some dynasties, a specific style other than prince has become customary for dynasts, such as fils de France
Fils de France
Fils de France was the style and rank held by the sons of the kings and dauphins of France. A daughter was known as a fille de France .The children of the dauphin, who was the king's heir apparent, were accorded the same style and status as if they were the king's children instead of his...

 in the House of Capet
House of Capet
The House of Capet, or The Direct Capetian Dynasty, , also called The House of France , or simply the Capets, which ruled the Kingdom of France from 987 to 1328, was the most senior line of the Capetian dynasty – itself a derivative dynasty from the Robertians. As rulers of France, the dynasty...

, and infante in Spain, Portugal, and Brazil (infante was borne by children of the monarch other than the heir apparent
Heir apparent
An heir apparent or heiress apparent is a person who is first in line of succession and cannot be displaced from inheriting, except by a change in the rules of succession....

, for whom each realm did use a unique princely title, viz, "Prince Imperial" in Brazil, "Prince of Brazil" in Portugal until 1822, and "Prince of Asturias" in Spain).

Sometimes a specific title is commonly used by various dynasties in a region, e.g. Mian
Mian
Mian is family name and a title of nobility used by Muslims in the Punjab region of South Asia.-Mian Khan Pashtuns:The Pathans of Bihar , have a large community of Pashtuns in the state of Bihar in India, who are said to have settled in the region from the 13th Century onwards...

 in various of the Punjabi princely Hill States
Hill States
The term hill states means states in a hilly area. In particular it is used for two northern border regions of colonial British India.-Raj period Punjab:...

 (lower Himalayan region in British India).

European dynasties usually awarded apanages to princes of the blood, typically attached to a feudal noble title, such as Britain's royal dukes, the Dauphin in France, the Count of Flanders in Belgium, and the Count of Syracuse in Sicily. Sometimes appanage titles were princely, e.g. Prince of Achaia (Courtenay), prince de Condé (Bourbon), Prince of Carignan (Savoy), but it was the fact that their owners were of princely rank rather than that they held a princely title which ensured their prominence.
  • For the often specific terminology concerning a probable heir apparent, see Crown Prince
    Crown Prince
    A crown prince or crown princess is the heir or heiress apparent to the throne in a royal or imperial monarchy. The wife of a crown prince is also titled crown princess....

     and links there.

Prince as a substantive title


Other princes derive their title not from dynastic membership as such, but from inheritance of a title named for a specific and historical territory, although the family's possession of prerogatives or properties in that territory may be long past. Such are most of the "princedoms" of France's ancien régime so resented for their pretentiousness by St-Simon. These include the princedoms of Arches-Charleville, Boisbelle-Henrichemont, Chalais, Château-Regnault, Guéméné, Martigues, Mercœur, Sedan, Talmond, Tingrey, and the "kingship of Yvetot, among others.

Prince as a reigning monarch


A prince or princess who is the head of state
Head of State
A head of state is the individual that serves as the chief public representative of a monarchy, republic, federation, commonwealth or other kind of state. His or her role generally includes legitimizing the state and exercising the political powers, functions, and duties granted to the head of...

 of a territory that has a monarchy
Monarchy
A monarchy is a form of government in which the office of head of state is usually held until death or abdication and is often hereditary and includes a royal house. In some cases, the monarch is elected...

 as a form of government
Form of government
A form of government, or form of state governance, refers to the set of political institutions by which a government of a state is organized. Synonyms include "regime type" and "system of government".-Empirical and conceptual problems:...

 is a reigning prince.

Nominal principalities


The current princely monarchies include:
  • the co-principality of Andorra (current reigning princes are the French President
    President of the French Republic
    The President of the French Republic colloquially referred to in English as the President of France, is France's elected Head of State....

     Nicolas Sarkozy
    Nicolas Sarkozy
    Nicolas Sarkozy is the 23rd and current President of the French Republic and ex officio Co-Prince of Andorra. He assumed the office on 16 May 2007 after defeating the Socialist Party candidate Ségolène Royal 10 days earlier....

     and HE Joan Enric Vives Sicília
    Joan Enric Vives Sicília
    Archbishop Joan Enric Vives i Sicília is the current Bishop of Urgell, a Roman Catholic diocese, and ex officio Co-Prince of Andorra...

    )
  • The emir
    Emir
    Emir , meaning "commander", "general", or "prince"; also transliterated as Amir, Aamir or Ameer) is a title of high office, used throughout the Muslim world...

    ate of Kuwait
    Kuwait
    The State of Kuwait is a sovereign Arab state situated in the north-east of the Arabian Peninsula in Western Asia. It is bordered by Saudi Arabia to the south at Khafji, and Iraq to the north at Basra. It lies on the north-western shore of the Persian Gulf. The name Kuwait is derived from the...

     (current reigning emir is Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah
    Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah
    Sheikh Sabah IV Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah is the Emir of Kuwait. Sheikh Sabah was sworn in on January 29, 2006 after confirmation by the National Assembly of Kuwait. He is the fourth son of Emir Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah. Sheikh Sabah is the head of the ruling Al-Sabah family...

    )
  • The principality
    Principality
    A principality is a monarchical feudatory or sovereign state, ruled or reigned over by a monarch with the title of prince or princess, or by a monarch with another title within the generic use of the term prince....

     of Liechtenstein
    Liechtenstein
    The Principality of Liechtenstein is a doubly landlocked alpine country in Central Europe, bordered by Switzerland to the west and south and by Austria to the east. Its area is just over , and it has an estimated population of 35,000. Its capital is Vaduz. The biggest town is Schaan...

     (current reigning prince is Hans-Adam II
    Hans-Adam II, Prince of Liechtenstein
    Hans-Adam II , is the reigning Prince of Liechtenstein. He is the son of Franz Joseph II, Prince of Liechtenstein and his wife Countess Georgina von Wilczek . He also bears the titles Duke of Troppau and Jägerndorf, Count of Rietberg...

    )
  • The principality of Monaco
    Monaco
    Monaco , officially the Principality of Monaco , is a sovereign city state on the French Riviera. It is bordered on three sides by its neighbour, France, and its centre is about from Italy. Its area is with a population of 35,986 as of 2011 and is the most densely populated country in the...

     (current reigning prince is Albert II
    Albert II, Prince of Monaco
    Albert II, Sovereign Prince of Monaco is the head of the House of Grimaldi and the ruler of the Principality of Monaco. He is the son of Rainier III, Prince of Monaco, and the American actress Grace Kelly...

    )
  • The Emirate of Qatar
    Qatar
    Qatar , also known as the State of Qatar or locally Dawlat Qaṭar, is a sovereign Arab state, located in the Middle East, occupying the small Qatar Peninsula on the northeasterly coast of the much larger Arabian Peninsula. Its sole land border is with Saudi Arabia to the south, with the rest of its...

     (Emir Hamad bin Khalifa
    Hamad bin Khalifa
    Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani is the ruling Emir of the State of Qatar since 1995.Sheikh Hamad was the appointed Heir Apparent of Qatar between 1977 and 1995 and at the same time Minister of Defense. In the early 1980s he led the Supreme Planning Council, which sets the Qatar's basic economic...

    )
  • The member emirates of the federation
    Federation
    A federation , also known as a federal state, is a type of sovereign state characterized by a union of partially self-governing states or regions united by a central government...

     in the United Arab Emirates
    United Arab Emirates
    The United Arab Emirates, abbreviated as the UAE, or shortened to "the Emirates", is a state situated in the southeast of the Arabian Peninsula in Western Asia on the Persian Gulf, bordering Oman, and Saudi Arabia, and sharing sea borders with Iraq, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, and Iran.The UAE is a...

     (United Arab Principalities):
    • Abu Dhabi
      Abu Dhabi
      Abu Dhabi , literally Father of Gazelle, is the capital and the second largest city of the United Arab Emirates in terms of population and the largest of the seven member emirates of the United Arab Emirates. Abu Dhabi lies on a T-shaped island jutting into the Persian Gulf from the central western...

       (Emir Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, also president of the UAE.)
    • Ajman
      Ajman
      Ajman , also spelt Ujman, is one of the seven emirates constituting the United Arab Emirates . With an area of just 260 square kilometres , Ajman is the smallest emirate by area...

       (Emir Humaid bin Rashid Al Nuaimi)
    • Dubai
      Dubai
      Dubai is a city and emirate in the United Arab Emirates . The emirate is located south of the Persian Gulf on the Arabian Peninsula and has the largest population with the second-largest land territory by area of all the emirates, after Abu Dhabi...

        (Emir Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum
      Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum
      Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum , also Sheikh Mohammed, , is the Prime Minister and Vice President of the United Arab Emirates , and absolute monarch of Dubai.-Personal life and education:...

      , also Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE)
    • Fujairah
      Fujairah
      Fujairah is one of the seven emirates that make up the United Arab Emirates, and the only one on the Gulf of Oman in the country's east instead of Persian Gulf .-History:...

       (Emir Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi)
    • Ras al-Khaimah
      Ras al-Khaimah
      Ras al-Khaimah is one of the emirates of the United Arab Emirates , in the east of the Persian Gulf. It is in the northern part of the UAE bordering Oman's exclave. The capital city and home of most residents is also called Ras al-Khaimah. The city has a population of 263,217 as of 2008. The city...

       (Emir Saqr bin Mohammad al-Qassimi
      Saqr bin Mohammad al-Qassimi
      Sheikh Saqr bin Mohammad al-Qassimi was the Emir of Ras al-Khaimah, one of the United Arab Emirates, from 1948 to 2010....

      )
    • Sharjah (Emir Sultan III bin Muhammad al-Qasimi)
    • Umm al-Quwain
      Umm al-Quwain
      Umm al-Quwain is one of the emirates in the United Arab Emirates, located in the north of the country. The emirate was ruled until his death by Rashid bin Ahmad Al Mu'alla, who was a member of the UAE's Supreme Council since 1981. The emirate had 62,000 inhabitants in 2003 and has an area of 750...

       (Emir Saud bin Rashid Al Mu'alla
      Saud bin Rashid Al Mu'alla
      Sheikh Saud bin Rashid Al Mu'alla is the current ruler of Umm Al Quwain and also a member of Supreme Council of the United Arab Emirates. He is the son of Rashid bin Ahmed Al Mu'alla...

      )



Micronations


In the same tradition some self-proclaimed monarchs of so-called micronation
Micronation
Micronations, sometimes also referred to as model countries and new country projects, are entities that claim to be independent nations or states but which are not recognized by world governments or major international organizations...

s establish themselves as virtual princes:
  • Roy Bates calls himself Prince Roy of the Principality of Sealand
    Principality of Sealand
    The Principality of Sealand is an unrecognized entity, located on HM Fort Roughs, a former World War II Maunsell Sea Fort in the North Sea 10 km off the coast of Suffolk, England, United Kingdom ....

  • Leonard George Casley calls himself Prince Leonard I of the Principality of Hutt River (enclave in Australia) http://www.hutt-river-province.com/PofHR_Naming.htm

Princes as representants of a reigning monarch


Various monarchies provide for different modes in which princes of the dynasty can temporarily or permanently share in the style and / or office of the Monarch, e.g. as Regent
Regent
A regent, from the Latin regens "one who reigns", is a person selected to act as head of state because the ruler is a minor, not present, or debilitated. Currently there are only two ruling Regencies in the world, sovereign Liechtenstein and the Malaysian constitutive state of Terengganu...

 or Viceroy
Viceroy
A viceroy is a royal official who runs a country, colony, or province in the name of and as representative of the monarch. The term derives from the Latin prefix vice-, meaning "in the place of" and the French word roi, meaning king. A viceroy's province or larger territory is called a viceroyalty...

.

Though these offices must not be reserved for members of the ruling dynasty, in some traditions they are, possibly even reflected in the style of the office, e.g. prince-lieutenant in Luxembourg
Luxembourg
Luxembourg , officially the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg , is a landlocked country in western Europe, bordered by Belgium, France, and Germany. It has two principal regions: the Oesling in the North as part of the Ardennes massif, and the Gutland in the south...

 repeatedly filled by the Crown prince
Crown Prince
A crown prince or crown princess is the heir or heiress apparent to the throne in a royal or imperial monarchy. The wife of a crown prince is also titled crown princess....

 before the grand duke's abdication, or in form of consortium imperii
Consortium imperii
Consortium imperii is a Latin term dating from the Roman Dominate, denoting the sharing of imperial authority between two or more emperors, each hence designated as consors imperii, i.e. "partner in imperium", either as formal equals or in subordination; the junior is then often the senior's...

.

Some monarchies even have a practice in which the Monarch can formally abdicate in favor of his heir, and yet retain a kingly title with executive power, e.g. Maha Upayuvaraja (Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Sanskrit , is a historical Indo-Aryan language and the primary liturgical language of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism.Buddhism: besides Pali, see Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Today, it is listed as one of the 22 scheduled languages of India and is an official language of the state of Uttarakhand...

 for Great Joint King in Cambodia
Cambodia
Cambodia , officially known as the Kingdom of Cambodia, is a country located in the southern portion of the Indochina Peninsula in Southeast Asia...

), though sometimes also conferred on powerful regents who exercised executive powers.

Non-dynastic princes


France and the Holy Roman Empire

In several countries of the European continent, e.g. in France, prince can be an aristocratic title of someone having a high rank of nobility
Nobility
Nobility is a social class which possesses more acknowledged privileges or eminence than members of most other classes in a society, membership therein typically being hereditary. The privileges associated with nobility may constitute substantial advantages over or relative to non-nobles, or may be...

 in chief of a geographical place, but no actual territory and without any necessary link to the royal family
Royal family
A royal family is the extended family of a king or queen regnant. The term imperial family appropriately describes the extended family of an emperor or empress, while the terms "ducal family", "grand ducal family" or "princely family" are more appropriate to describe the relatives of a reigning...

, which makes comparing it with e.g. the British system of royal princes difficult.

The kings of France started to bestow the style of prince, as a title among the nobility, from the 16th century onwards. These titles were created by elevating a seigneurie to the nominal status of a principality—although prerogatives of sovereignty were never conceded in the letters patent. These titles held no official place in the hierarchy of the nobility, but were often treated as ranking just below dukedoms, since they were often inherited (or assumed) by ducal heirs:
  • French titles of prince recognized by the king
    • Holy Roman Empire States annexed by France
      • Arches-Charleville: in the Ardennes
        Ardennes
        The Ardennes is a region of extensive forests, rolling hills and ridges formed within the Givetian Ardennes mountain range, primarily in Belgium and Luxembourg, but stretching into France , and geologically into the Eifel...

         region, near the border with the Empire.
      • Château-Renaud: near Arches-Charleville.
      • Dombes: on the east bank of the Rhône
        Rhône
        Rhone can refer to:* Rhone, one of the major rivers of Europe, running through Switzerland and France* Rhône Glacier, the source of the Rhone River and one of the primary contributors to Lake Geneva in the far eastern end of the canton of Valais in Switzerland...

        .
      • Orange
        Principality of Orange
        The Principality of Orange was a feudal state in Provence, in the south of modern-day France, on the left bank of the River Rhone north of the city of Avignon....

        .
      • Sedan
        Sedan, France
        Sedan is a commune in France, a sub-prefecture of the Ardennes department in northern France.-Geography:The historic centre is built on a peninsula formed by an arc of the Meuse River. It is around from the Belgian border.-History:...

        : principality part of the Duchy of Bouillon.
    • Ancient principalities seated in the Kingdom of France
      • Boisbelle, later Henrichemont: in the Berry
        Berry
        The botanical definition of a berry is a fleshy fruit produced from a single ovary. Grapes are an example. The berry is the most common type of fleshy fruit in which the entire ovary wall ripens into an edible pericarp. They may have one or more carpels with a thin covering and fleshy interiors....

         region, a sovereign principality recognized in 1598.
      • Luxe: in the Béarn
        Béarn
        Béarn is one of the traditional provinces of France, located in the Pyrenees mountains and in the plain at their feet, in southwest France. Along with the three Basque provinces of Soule, Lower Navarre, and Labourd, the principality of Bidache, as well as small parts of Gascony, it forms in the...

         region, also styled Sovereign Count.
      • Yvetot: in the Normandy
        Normandy
        Normandy is a geographical region corresponding to the former Duchy of Normandy. It is in France.The continental territory covers 30,627 km² and forms the preponderant part of Normandy and roughly 5% of the territory of France. It is divided for administrative purposes into two régions:...

         region, recognized as King of Yvetot.
    • Principalities created by the King
      • Château-Porcien
        Château-Porcien
        Château-Porcien is a commune in the Ardennes department in northern France.-Population:-References:*...

        : in the Ardennes
        Ardennes
        The Ardennes is a region of extensive forests, rolling hills and ridges formed within the Givetian Ardennes mountain range, primarily in Belgium and Luxembourg, but stretching into France , and geologically into the Eifel...

         region, created in 1561 in the House of Croÿ
        House of Croÿ
        The House of Croÿ is an international family of European mediatized nobility which held a seat in the Imperial Diet from 1486, and was elevated to the rank of Imperial Princes in 1594...

        .
      • Guéméné: in Brittany
        Brittany
        Brittany is a cultural and administrative region in the north-west of France. Previously a kingdom and then a duchy, Brittany was united to the Kingdom of France in 1532 as a province. Brittany has also been referred to as Less, Lesser or Little Britain...

        , created in 1667 in the House of Rohan. Used at times for the heir of the Duke of Montbazon or form the Duke himself.
      • Joinville
        Joinville, Haute-Marne
        Joinville is a commune in the Haute-Marne department in north-eastern France.Its medieval château-fort, which gave to members of the House of Guise their title, duc de Joinville, was demolished during the Revolution of 1789, but the 16th-century Château du Grand Jardin built by Claude de Lorraine,...

        : in the Champagne
        Champagne, France
        Champagne is a historic province in the northeast of France, now best known for the sparkling white wine that bears its name.Formerly ruled by the counts of Champagne, its western edge is about 100 miles east of Paris. The cities of Troyes, Reims, and Épernay are the commercial centers of the area...

         region, created in 1552 in the house of Lorraine
        House of Lorraine
        The House of Lorraine, the main and now only remaining line known as Habsburg-Lorraine, is one of the most important and was one of the longest-reigning royal houses in the history of Europe...

        .
      • Martigues
        Martigues
        Martigues is a commune northwest of Marseille. It is part of the Bouches-du-Rhône department in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region on the eastern end of the Canal de Caronte....

        : in the Provence
        Provence
        Provence ; Provençal: Provença in classical norm or Prouvènço in Mistralian norm) is a region of south eastern France on the Mediterranean adjacent to Italy. It is part of the administrative région of Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur...

         region, created 16th century in the House of Lorraine
        House of Lorraine
        The House of Lorraine, the main and now only remaining line known as Habsburg-Lorraine, is one of the most important and was one of the longest-reigning royal houses in the history of Europe...

        .
      • Mercœur: in the Auvergne
        Auvergne (province)
        Auvergne was a historic province in south central France. It was originally the feudal domain of the Counts of Auvergne. It is now the geographical and cultural area that corresponds to the former province....

         region, created in 1563 in the House of Lorraine
        House of Lorraine
        The House of Lorraine, the main and now only remaining line known as Habsburg-Lorraine, is one of the most important and was one of the longest-reigning royal houses in the history of Europe...

        , later a duchy. Recreated in 1719.
      • Tingry: in the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region, created in 1587 in the House of Luxemburg.
    • The princes of Condé
      Prince of Condé
      The Most Serene House of Condé is a historical French house, a noble lineage of descent from a single ancestor...

       and Conti
      Prince of Conti
      The title of Prince of Conti was a French noble title, assumed by a cadet branch of the house of Bourbon-Condé. It was taken from Conty, a small town of northern France, c. 35 km southwest of Amiens, which came into the Condé family by the marriage of Louis of Bourbon, first prince of Condé,...

      , cadets of the French royal house, used recognized princely titles, but the lordships of Condé and Conti were never formally created principalities by the King.

  • Unrecognized titles of Prince
    • Aigremont
      Aigremont
      Aigremont is the name of several communes in France:* Aigremont, Gard, in the Gard department* Aigremont, Haute-Marne, in the Haute-Marne department* Aigremont, Yonne, in the Yonne department* Aigremont, Yvelines, in the Yvelines department...

    • Anet
      Anet
      Anet is a commune in the Eure-et-Loir department in northern France. It is situated between the rivers Eure and Vègre, northeast of Dreux by rail....

      : used by the Dukes of Vendôme, then the Dukes of Penthièvre.
    • Antibes
      Antibes
      Antibes is a resort town in the Alpes-Maritimes department in southeastern France.It lies on the Mediterranean in the Côte d'Azur, located between Cannes and Nice. The town of Juan-les-Pins is within the commune of Antibes...

      : claimed by the de Grasse
      De Grasse
      - People :* François Joseph Paul, marquis de Grasetilly, comte de Grasse , French admiral that helped George Washington during the siege of Yorktown in the American Revolutionary War* Joe De Grasse , film director...

       family.
    • Bédeille
      Bédeille
      Bédeille is the name of the following communes in France:* Bédeille, Ariège, in the Ariège department* Bédeille, Pyrénées-Atlantiques, in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department...

      : in Béarn
      Béarn
      Béarn is one of the traditional provinces of France, located in the Pyrenees mountains and in the plain at their feet, in southwest France. Along with the three Basque provinces of Soule, Lower Navarre, and Labourd, the principality of Bidache, as well as small parts of Gascony, it forms in the...

      .
    • Bidache
      Bidache
      Bidache is a commune of the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department in south-western France.It is located in the former province of Lower Navarre, but it was a little principality after Antonio I proclaimed himself sovereign prince in 1570, until the French Revolution finished it.-External links:*...

      : in Béarn
      Béarn
      Béarn is one of the traditional provinces of France, located in the Pyrenees mountains and in the plain at their feet, in southwest France. Along with the three Basque provinces of Soule, Lower Navarre, and Labourd, the principality of Bidache, as well as small parts of Gascony, it forms in the...

       used by the House of Gramont, but the heir was usually styled Count of Guiche rather than Prince of Bidache.
    • Carency
      Carency
      Carency is a commune in the Pas-de-Calais department in the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region of France.-Geography:A farming village located 8 miles northwest of Arras on the D58 road...

      : in Artois
      Artois
      Artois is a former province of northern France. Its territory has an area of around 4000 km² and a population of about one million. Its principal cities are Arras , Saint-Omer, Lens and Béthune.-Location:...

      . Originally a lordship of the House of Bourbon. It was inherited by the Counts of La Vauguyon, who used the style of Prince of Carency for the heir.
    • Chabanais
      Chabanais
      Chabanais is a commune in the Charente department in southwestern France.-Geography:The Vienne River passes through Chabanais. The village is located in the Rochechouart crater, an ancient asteroid impact crater that eroded away and is not visible anymore....

      : in Angoumois
      Angoumois
      Angoumois was a county and province of France, nearly corresponding today to the Charente département. Its capital was Angoulême....

      . Reduced to a marquessate in 1702
    • Chalais
      Chalais
      Chalais may refer to:* Chalais, Switzerland* Chalais, Charente, a commune in France* Chalais, Dordogne, formerly Chaleix, a commune in France* Chalais, Indre, a commune in France* Chalais, Vienne, a commune in France...

      : in Périgord
      Périgord
      The Périgord is a former province of France, which corresponds roughly to the current Dordogne département, now forming the northern part of the Aquitaine région. It is divided into four regions, the Périgord Noir , the Périgord Blanc , the Périgord Vert and the Périgord Pourpre...

      . Inherited by the elder branch of the House of Talleyrand. Grandeeship of Sapin annexed to the title in 1714.
    • Commercy
      Commercy
      Commercy is a commune in the Meuse department in Lorraine in north-eastern France.It is the home of the madeleines referred to by Marcel Proust in A la Recherche du Temps Perdu.-History:...

      : lordship of Lorraine
      Lorraine (région)
      Lorraine is one of the 27 régions of France. The administrative region has two cities of equal importance, Metz and Nancy. Metz is considered to be the official capital since that is where the regional parliament is situated...

      . Younger sons of the House of Lorraine
      House of Lorraine
      The House of Lorraine, the main and now only remaining line known as Habsburg-Lorraine, is one of the most important and was one of the longest-reigning royal houses in the history of Europe...

       used the style of Prince of Commercy.
    • Courtenay: the House of Courtenay
      House of Courtenay
      The House of Courtenay was an important dynasty in medieval France originating from the castle of Courtenay in the Gâtinais , going back to the 10th century. The dynasty descended from Athon, the first lord of Courtenay, apparently himself a descendant of the Counts of Sens and from Pharamond,...

       descended from Louis VI of France
      Louis VI of France
      Louis VI , called the Fat , was King of France from 1108 until his death . Chronicles called him "roi de Saint-Denis".-Reign:...

       but was never recognized as Princes of the Blood by the King. The last branch of the house used the style of Prince of Courtenay from the 17th century. The style passed to the Dukes of Bauffremont.
    • Elbeuf
      Elbeuf
      -Population:-Places of interest:* The mairie, also housing the museum.* Two seventeenth century churches.* Some sixteenth century houses.* A fifteenth century stone cross.* The theatre , renovated in the late twentieth century.-Notable people:...

      : lordship of Normandy
      Normandy
      Normandy is a geographical region corresponding to the former Duchy of Normandy. It is in France.The continental territory covers 30,627 km² and forms the preponderant part of Normandy and roughly 5% of the territory of France. It is divided for administrative purposes into two régions:...

      . Younger sons of the House of Lorraine
      House of Lorraine
      The House of Lorraine, the main and now only remaining line known as Habsburg-Lorraine, is one of the most important and was one of the longest-reigning royal houses in the history of Europe...

       used the style of Prince of Elbeuf ; later a duchy.
    • Lamballe
      Lamballe
      Lamballe is a commune in the Côtes-d'Armor department in Brittany in northwestern France.It lies on the Gouessant east-southeast of Saint-Brieuc by rail.- History :...

      : in Brittany
      Brittany
      Brittany is a cultural and administrative region in the north-west of France. Previously a kingdom and then a duchy, Brittany was united to the Kingdom of France in 1532 as a province. Brittany has also been referred to as Less, Lesser or Little Britain...

      , used by the heir of the Duke of Penthièvre.
    • Lambesc
      Lambesc
      Lambesc is a commune in the Bouches-du-Rhône department in the Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur region in southern France.Lambesc is located in the heart of Provence at the foot of the Côtes mountain range, near the Alpilles. The village has a strong historical and cultural heritage, being home to the...

      : in Provence
      Provence
      Provence ; Provençal: Provença in classical norm or Prouvènço in Mistralian norm) is a region of south eastern France on the Mediterranean adjacent to Italy. It is part of the administrative région of Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur...

      , used by various cadets of the House of Lorraine, notably by the heirs of the Dukes of Elbeuf.
    • Léon
      Kingdom of León
      The Kingdom of León was an independent kingdom situated in the northwest region of the Iberian Peninsula. It was founded in AD 910 when the Christian princes of Asturias along the northern coast of the peninsula shifted their capital from Oviedo to the city of León...

      : viscountcy of Brittany
      Brittany
      Brittany is a cultural and administrative region in the north-west of France. Previously a kingdom and then a duchy, Brittany was united to the Kingdom of France in 1532 as a province. Brittany has also been referred to as Less, Lesser or Little Britain...

      . The heirs of the Dukes of Rohan used the style of Prince of Léon.
    • Listenois: in Franche-Comté
      Franche-Comté
      Franche-Comté the former "Free County" of Burgundy, as distinct from the neighbouring Duchy, is an administrative region and a traditional province of eastern France...

      , used by the Dukes of Bauffremont after the Courtenay inheritance.
    • Marsillac: in Angoumois
      Angoumois
      Angoumois was a county and province of France, nearly corresponding today to the Charente département. Its capital was Angoulême....

      , used by the heir of the Duke of La Rochefoucauld
      La Rochefoucauld
      La Rochefoucauld can refer to:People:* Antoine de La Rochefoucauld* Count Antoine de La Rochefoucauld , 19th century Rosicrucian* François de La Rochefoucauld , French author...

      .
    • Maubuisson: in Île-de-France
      Île-de-France (province)
      The province of Île-de-France or Isle de France is an historical province of France, and the one at the centre of power during most of French history...

      , used by the Dukes of Rohan-Rohan.
    • Montauban
      Montauban
      Montauban is a commune in the Tarn-et-Garonne department in the Midi-Pyrénées region in southern France. It is the capital of the department and lies north of Toulouse....

      : in Brittany
      Brittany
      Brittany is a cultural and administrative region in the north-west of France. Previously a kingdom and then a duchy, Brittany was united to the Kingdom of France in 1532 as a province. Brittany has also been referred to as Less, Lesser or Little Britain...

      , used by various cadets of the House of Rohan.
    • Montbazon
      Montbazon
      Montbazon is a commune in the Indre-et-Loire department in central France.Montbazon is located on the river Indre between the towns Veigné, Monts and Sorigny...

      : a duchy of the House of Rohan, style of Prince of Montbazon used by various cadets of the House.
    • Mortagne
      Mortagne-sur-Gironde
      Mortagne-sur-Gironde is a commune in the Charente-Maritime department in southwestern France.-Population:-References:*...

      : in Aquitaine
      Aquitaine
      Aquitaine , archaic Guyenne/Guienne , is one of the 27 regions of France, in the south-western part of metropolitan France, along the Atlantic Ocean and the Pyrenees mountain range on the border with Spain. It comprises the 5 departments of Dordogne, :Lot et Garonne, :Pyrénées-Atlantiques, Landes...

      , used by the Dukes of Richelieu
      Duke of Richelieu
      Duke of Richelieu was a title in the peerage of France. It was created on 26 November 1629 for cardinal Richelieu who, as a clergyman, had no issue to pass it down to...

      .
    • Poix
      Poix
      Poix is a commune in the Marne department in north-eastern France....

      : in Picardy
      Picardy
      This article is about the historical French province. For other uses, see Picardy .Picardy is a historical province of France, in the north of France...

      , used by various houses, raised two times to a duchy.
    • Pons
      Pons
      The pons is a structure located on the brain stem, named after the Latin word for "bridge" or the 16th-century Italian anatomist and surgeon Costanzo Varolio . It is superior to the medulla oblongata, inferior to the midbrain, and ventral to the cerebellum. In humans and other bipeds this means it...

      : in Saintonge
      Saintonge
      Saintonge is a small region on the Atlantic coast of France within the département Charente-Maritime, west and south of Charente in the administrative region of Poitou-Charentes....

      , used by cadets of the House of Lorraine.
    • Rochefort
      Rochefort, Charente-Maritime
      Rochefort is a commune in southwestern France, a port on the Charente estuary. It is a sub-prefecture of the Charente-Maritime department.-History:...

      : used by cadets of the House of Rohan.
    • Soubise
      Soubise
      Soubise can refer to:* Soubise sauce, a béchamel-based sauce containing strained or puréed onions* Soubise, a commune of the Charente-Maritime département, in France* Benjamin de Rohan, duc de Soubise , Huguenot leader...

      : used by cadets of the House of Rohan, also Dukes of Rohan-Rohan.
    • Soyons
      Soyons
      Soyons is a commune in the Ardèche department in southern France.-Population:...

      : in Dauphiné
      Dauphiné
      The Dauphiné or Dauphiné Viennois is a former province in southeastern France, whose area roughly corresponded to that of the present departments of :Isère, :Drôme, and :Hautes-Alpes....

      , used by cadets of the Dukes of Uzès.
    • Talmond: in Vendée
      Vendée
      The Vendée is a department in the Pays-de-la-Loire region in west central France, on the Atlantic Ocean. The name Vendée is taken from the Vendée river which runs through the south-eastern part of the department.-History:...

      , used by the Dukes of La Trémoïlle
      La Trémoille
      Members of the House of La Trémoille, were part of an old French family which derives its name from a village in the department of Vienne....

      .
    • Tonnay-Charente
      Tonnay-Charente
      Tonnay-Charente is a commune in the Charente-Maritime department in southwestern France.In the 18th century it was the home town of Prominent Irish Physician Dr...

      : used by the heirs of the Dukes of Mortemart.
    • Turenne: sovereign viscountcy on the House of La Tour d'Auvergne, style of Prince of Turenne used by cadets of the house.

This can even occur in a monarchy within which an identical but real and substantive feudal title exists, such as Fürst in German. An example of this is:
  • Otto von Bismarck
    Otto von Bismarck
    Otto Eduard Leopold, Prince of Bismarck, Duke of Lauenburg , simply known as Otto von Bismarck, was a Prussian-German statesman whose actions unified Germany, made it a major player in world affairs, and created a balance of power that kept Europe at peace after 1871.As Minister President of...

     was called Prince of Bismarck in the empire of reunited Germany, under the Hohenzollern dynasty.

Spain and France

In other cases, such titular princedoms are created in chief of an event, such as a treaty of a victory. An example of this is:
  • The Spanish minister Manuel Godoy was created Principe de la Paz or Prince of Peace by his king for negotiating the 1795 double peace-treaty of Basilea, by which the revolutionary French republic made peace with Prussia and with Spain.
  • The triumphant generals who led their troops to victory often received a victory title
    Victory title
    A victory title is an honorific title adopted by a successful military commander to commemorate his defeat of an enemy nation. This practice was first used by Ancient Rome and is still most commonly associated with the Romans, but it has also been adopted as a practice by many modern empires,...

     from Napoleon, both princely and ducal.
  • King William I of the Netherlands
    William I of the Netherlands
    William I Frederick, born Willem Frederik Prins van Oranje-Nassau , was a Prince of Orange and the first King of the Netherlands and Grand Duke of Luxembourg....

     bestowed the victory title
    Victory title
    A victory title is an honorific title adopted by a successful military commander to commemorate his defeat of an enemy nation. This practice was first used by Ancient Rome and is still most commonly associated with the Romans, but it has also been adopted as a practice by many modern empires,...

     of prince of Waterloo
    Prince of Waterloo
    Prince of Waterloo is one of the highest-ranking Dutch titles of nobility, retained by the Duke of Wellington.The title was given by King William I of the Netherlands, of the then recently united Low Countries, to Field Marshal The 1st Duke of Wellington as a victory title in recognition of...

     upon Arthur Wellesley, Duke of Wellington
    Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington
    Field Marshal Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, KG, GCB, GCH, PC, FRS , was an Irish-born British soldier and statesman, and one of the leading military and political figures of the 19th century...

     after his victory over Napoleon I Bonaparte at Waterloo
    Battle of Waterloo
    The Battle of Waterloo was fought on Sunday 18 June 1815 near Waterloo in present-day Belgium, then part of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands...

     in 1815.


Poland and Russia

In Poland specifically, the titles of prince dated either to the times before the Union of Lublin
Union of Lublin
The Union of Lublin replaced the personal union of the Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania with a real union and an elective monarchy, since Sigismund II Augustus, the last of the Jagiellons, remained childless after three marriages. In addition, the autonomy of Royal Prussia was...

 or were granted to Polish nobles by foreign kings, as the law in Poland forbade the king from dividing nobility by granting them hereditary titles. For more information, see The Princely Houses of Poland
The Princely Houses of Poland
The Princely Houses of Poland differed from other princely houses in Europe. Most importantly, Polish nobility could not be granted nobility titles by the Polish kings in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth...

.

In the Russian system, knyaz
Knyaz
Kniaz, knyaz or knez is a Slavic title found in most Slavic languages, denoting a royal nobility rank. It is usually translated into English as either Prince or less commonly as Duke....

, translated as "prince", is the highest degree of official nobility. Members of older dynasties that were eventually subjected to the Russian imperial dynasty were also accorded the title of knyaz -- sometimes after first being allowed to use the higher title of tsarevich (e.g. the Princes Gruzinsky and Sibirsky. Rurik
Rurik
Rurik, or Riurik , was a semilegendary 9th-century Varangian who founded the Rurik dynasty which ruled Kievan Rus and later some of its successor states, most notably the Tsardom of Russia, until 1598....

id branches used the knyaz title also after they were succeeded by the Romanov
Romanov
The House of Romanov was the second and last imperial dynasty to rule over Russia, reigning from 1613 until the February Revolution abolished the crown in 1917...

s as the Russian imperial dynasty. An example of this is:
  • Grigori Aleksandrovich Potemkin who was made Prince Potemkin

The title of prince in various Western traditions and languages



In each case, the title is followed (when available) by the female form and then (not always available, and obviously rarely applicable to a prince of the blood without a principality) the name of the territorial associated with it, each separated by a slash. If a second title (or set) is also given, then that one is for a Prince of the blood, the first for a principality. Be aware that the absence of a separate title for a prince of the blood may not always mean no such title exists; alternatively, the existence of a word does not imply there is also a reality in the linguistic territory concerned; it may very well be used exclusively to render titles in other languages, regardless whether there is a historical link with any (which often means that linguistic tradition is adopted)

Etymologically, we can discern the following traditions (some languages followed a historical link, e.g. within the Holy Roman Empire, not their language family; some even fail to follow the same logic for certain other aristocratic titles):

Romance languages

  • Languages (mostly Romance
    Romance languages
    The Romance languages are a branch of the Indo-European language family, more precisely of the Italic languages subfamily, comprising all the languages that descend from Vulgar Latin, the language of ancient Rome...

    ) only using the Latin root princeps:
    • Catalan: Príncep /Princesa – Príncep /Princesa
    • French: Prince /Princesse – Prince /Princesse
    • Friulian: Princip /Principesse – Princip /Principesse
    • Italian: Principe /Principessa – Principe /Principessa
    • Latin (post-Roman): Princeps/*Princeps/*
    • Monegasque: Principu /Principessa – Principu /Principessa
    • Occitan: Prince /Princessa – Prince /Princessa
    • Portuguese: Príncipe /Princesa – Príncipe /Princesa
    • Rhaeto-Romansh: Prinzi /Prinzessa – Prinzi /Prinzessa
    • Romanian: Prinţ /Prinţesă – Principe /Principesă
    • Spanish: Príncipe /Princesa – Príncipe /Princesa
    • Venetian: Principe /Principessa – Principe /Principessa

Celtic languages

    • Breton: Priñs /Priñsez
    • Irish: Prionsa /Banphrionsa – Flaith
      Flaith
      A flaith or flath , plural flatha, was an hereditary prince, or even princess, in the Gaelic world, with the plural often referring to the social class...

       /Banfhlaith
    • Scottish Gaelic: Prionnsa /Bana-phrionnsa – Flath /Ban-fhlath
    • Welsh: Tywysog /Tywysoges – Prins /Prinses

Germanic languages

  • Languages (mainly Germanic
    Germanic languages
    The Germanic languages constitute a sub-branch of the Indo-European language family. The common ancestor of all of the languages in this branch is called Proto-Germanic , which was spoken in approximately the mid-1st millennium BC in Iron Age northern Europe...

    ) that use (generally alongside a princeps-derivate for princes of the blood) an equivalent of the German Fürst:
    • English:Prince /Princess – Prince /Princess
    • Afrikaans: Prins
    • Danish: Fyrste /Fyrstinde – Prins /Prinsesse
    • Dutch: Vorst /Vorstin- Prins /Prinses
    • Faroese: Fúrsti /Fúrstafrúa, Fúrstinna – Prinsur /Prinsessa
    • Frisian: Foarst /Foarstinne – Prins /Prinsesse
    • German: Fürst /Fürstin – Prinz /Prinzessin
    • Icelandic: Fursti /Furstynja – Prins /Prinsessa
    • Luxembourgish: Fürst /Fürstin – Prënz /Prinzessin
    • Norwegian: Fyrste /Fyrstinne – Prins /Prinsesse
    • Old English: Ǣðeling /Hlæfdiġe
    • Swedish: Furste /Furstinna – Prins /Prinsessa

Slavic and Baltic languages

  • Slavic
    Slavic languages
    The Slavic languages , a group of closely related languages of the Slavic peoples and a subgroup of Indo-European languages, have speakers in most of Eastern Europe, in much of the Balkans, in parts of Central Europe, and in the northern part of Asia.-Branches:Scholars traditionally divide Slavic...

     and Baltic languages
    Baltic languages
    The Baltic languages are a group of related languages belonging to the Balto-Slavic branch of the Indo-European language family and spoken mainly in areas extending east and southeast of the Baltic Sea in Northern Europe...

    :
    • Belarusian: Tsarevich, Karalevich, Prynts /Tsarewna, Karalewna, Pryntsesa
    • Bulgarian: (phonetically pronounced) Knyaz /Knaginya, Kral, Prints /Printsesa
    • Bosnian: Кнез/Књегиња or Knez/Kneginja, Краљевић/Краљевна or Kraljević/Kraljevna, Принц/Принцеза or Princ/Princeza
    • Croatian: Knez/Kneginja, Kraljević/Kraljevna, Princ/Princeza
    • Czech: Kníže /Kněžna, Princ/Princezna
    • Latvian: Firsts /Firstiene – Princis /Princese
    • Lithuanian: Kunigaikštis /Kunigaikštiene – Princas /Princese
    • Macedonian: Knez /Knezhina, Tsarevich, Kralevich, Prints /Tsarevna, Kralevna, Printsesa
    • Polish: Książę /Księżna, Książę, Królewicz /Księżna, Królewna
    • Russian: Knyaz
      Knyaz
      Kniaz, knyaz or knez is a Slavic title found in most Slavic languages, denoting a royal nobility rank. It is usually translated into English as either Prince or less commonly as Duke....

       /Knyagina Knyazhyna, Tsarevich, Korolyevich, Prints /Tsarevna, Korolyevna, Printsessa
    • Serbian: Кнез/Књегиња or Knez/Kneginja, Краљевић/Краљевна or Kraljević/Kraljevna, Принц/Принцеза or Princ/Princeza
    • Slovak: Knieža /Kňažná, Kráľovič, Princ /Princezná
    • Slovene: Knez /Kneginja, Kraljevič, Princ /Kraljična, Princesa
    • Ukrainian: Knyaz /Knyazhnya, Tsarenko, Korolenko, Prints /Tsarivna, Korolivna, Printsizna

Other languages

  • Albanian: Princ /Princeshë – Princ /Princeshë
  • Arabic: Emir
    Emir
    Emir , meaning "commander", "general", or "prince"; also transliterated as Amir, Aamir or Ameer) is a title of high office, used throughout the Muslim world...

     /Emira – Prince /Princess
  • Estonian: Vürst /Vürstinna – Prints /Printsess
  • Filipino: Prínsipe / Prinsesa – Prince / Princess
  • Finnish: Ruhtinas /Ruhtinatar – Prinssi /Prinsessa
  • Georgian: თავადი / Tavadi
    Tavadi
    Tavadi , "prince", lit. "head/chief" [man], from tavi, "head", with the prefix of agent -di) was a feudal title in Georgia first applied in the Late Middle Ages usually translated in English as prince...

  • Greek (Medieval, formal): Prigkips, Πρίγκηψ/Prigkipissa, Πριγκήπισσα
  • Greek (Modern, colloquial): Prigkipas, Πρίγκηπας/Prigkipissa, Πριγκήπισσα
  • Hindi: Rājkumār (राजकुमार), Kũwar (कुँवर), both from Sanskrit rāj (royal) + kumāra (a boy)
  • Tamil: Ilavarasar/Ilavarasi-Prince/Princess
  • Hungarian (Magyar): Herceg / Hercegnő, or Fejedelem / Fejedelemnő if head of state.
  • Maltese: Prinċep /Prinċipessa – Prinċep /Prinċipessa
  • Perisan(Farsi): Shahzade (both genders), Shahpour(King's son in general)& Shahdokht(King's daughter in general)
  • Turkish: Prens /Prenses
  • Indonesian: Pangeran / Putri
  • Malaysian: Putera / Puteri
  • Urdu: Shahzada / Shahzadi – Prince /Princess

The title of prince in other traditions and languages


The above is essentially the story of European, Christian dynasties and other nobility, also 'exported' to their colonial and other overseas territories and otherwise adopted by rather westernized societies elsewhere (e.g. Haiti).

Applying these essentially western concepts, and terminology, to other cultures even when they don't do so, is common but in many respects rather dubious. Different (historical, religious...) backgrounds have also begot significantly different dynastic and nobiliary systems, which are poorly represented by the 'closest' western analogy.

It therefore makes sense to treat these per civilization.

Islamic traditions

  • Arabian tradition since the caliphate
    Caliphate
    The term caliphate, "dominion of a caliph " , refers to the first system of government established in Islam and represented the political unity of the Muslim Ummah...

     – in several monarchies it remains customary to use the title Sheikh
    Sheikh
    Not to be confused with sikhSheikh — also spelled Sheik or Shaikh, or transliterated as Shaykh — is an honorific in the Arabic language that literally means "elder" and carries the meaning "leader and/or governor"...

     (in itself below princely rank) for all members of the royal family. In families (often reigning dynasties) which claim descent from Muhammad
    Muhammad
    Muhammad |ligature]] at U+FDF4 ;Arabic pronunciation varies regionally; the first vowel ranges from ~~; the second and the last vowel: ~~~. There are dialects which have no stress. In Egypt, it is pronounced not in religious contexts...

    , this is expressed in either of a number of titles (supposing different exact relations): sayid, sharif; these are retained even when too remote from any line of succession to be a member of any dynasty.
  • Malay countries
  • In the Ottoman empire, the sovereign of imperial rank (incorrectly known in the west as (Great) sultan) was styled padishah
    Padishah
    Padishah, Padshah, Padeshah, Badishah or Badshah is a superlative royal title, composed of the Persian pād "master" and the widespread shāh "king", which was adopted by several monarchs claiming the highest rank, roughly equivalent to the ancient Persian notion of "The Great" or "Great King", and...

     with a host of additional titles, reflecting his claim as political successor to the various conquered states. Princes of the blood, male and female, were given the style sultan
    Sultan
    Sultan is a title with several historical meanings. Originally, it was an Arabic language abstract noun meaning "strength", "authority", "rulership", and "dictatorship", derived from the masdar سلطة , meaning "authority" or "power". Later, it came to be used as the title of certain rulers who...

     (normally reserved for Muslim rulers)
  • Persia (Iran) – Princes as members of a royal family, are referred to by the title Shahzadeh, meaning "descendant of the king". Since the word zadeh could refer to either a male or female descendant, Shahzadeh had the parallel meaning of "princess" as well. Princes can also be sons of provincial kings (Khan
    Khan (title)
    Khan is an originally Altaic and subsequently Central Asian title for a sovereign or military ruler, widely used by medieval nomadic Turko-Mongol tribes living to the north of China. 'Khan' is also seen as a title in the Xianbei confederation for their chief between 283 and 289...

    ) and the title referring to them would be the title of Khanzadeh. Princes as people who got a title from the King are called "Mirza
    Mirza
    Mirza , is of Persian origin, denoting the rank of a high nobleman or Prince. It is usually translated into English as a royal or imperial Prince of the Blood...

    ", diminutive of "Amir Zadeh" (King's Son).
  • In Indian Muslim dynasties, the most common titles were Mirza
    Mirza
    Mirza , is of Persian origin, denoting the rank of a high nobleman or Prince. It is usually translated into English as a royal or imperial Prince of the Blood...

     (from Amirzada) and Shahzada
    Shahzada
    Shahzada may refer to:*Shahzada, princely title, crown prince, the son of a shah.*Haji Shahzada , one of the Guantanamo captives whose 2004 CSR Tribunal determined he was not an enemy after all....

    ; while Nawabzada and Sahibzada were also given to younger blood princes.

China


In ancient China, the title of prince developed from being the highest title of nobility
Chinese nobility
Chinese sovereignty and peerage, the nobility of China, were an important feature of traditional social and political organization of Imperial China. While the concepts of hereditary sovereign and peerage titles and noble families were featured as early as the semi-mythical, early historical...

 (synonymous with duke
Duke
A duke or duchess is a member of the nobility, historically of highest rank below the monarch, and historically controlling a duchy...

) in the Zhou Dynasty
Zhou Dynasty
The Zhou Dynasty was a Chinese dynasty that followed the Shang Dynasty and preceded the Qin Dynasty. Although the Zhou Dynasty lasted longer than any other dynasty in Chinese history, the actual political and military control of China by the Ji family lasted only until 771 BC, a period known as...

, to five grades of princes (not counting the sons and grandsons of the emperor) by the time of the fall of the Qing Dynasty
Qing Dynasty
The Qing Dynasty was the last dynasty of China, ruling from 1644 to 1912 with a brief, abortive restoration in 1917. It was preceded by the Ming Dynasty and followed by the Republic of China....

.The Chinese word for prince Wang as Chinese believe the emperor Huang Di is the ruler of all kings. The most accurate translations of the English word "prince" are Huang Zi or Wang Zi .

Japan


In Japan, the title Kōshaku was used as the highest title of Kazoku
Kazoku
The was the hereditary peerage of the Empire of Japan that existed between 1869 and 1947.-Origins:Following the Meiji Restoration of 1868, the ancient court nobility of Kyoto regained some of its lost status...

 ( Japanese modern nobility) before the present constitution. Kōshaku, however, is more commonly translated as "Duke" to avoid confusion with the following royal ranks in the Imperial Household: Shinnō ( literally, King of the Blood); female Naishinnō ( lit., Queen (by herself) of the Blood); and Shinnōhi lit., Consort of King of the Blood); or Ō ( lit., King); female, Jyo-Ō ( lit., Queen (by herself)); and Ōhi ( lit., Consort of King). The former is the higher title of a male member of the Imperial family while the latter is the lower.

Korea


The title "Prince" was used for the king's male-line descendant. Prince translated generally into three divisions. In Jo-seon, the king's legitimate son used title 대군 (Dae-goun). A son born of a concubine and king's great-great-grandson used 군. Presently, it is usually translated as 왕자.

India


See princely states for the often particular, mainly Hindu
Hindu
Hindu refers to an identity associated with the philosophical, religious and cultural systems that are indigenous to the Indian subcontinent. As used in the Constitution of India, the word "Hindu" is also attributed to all persons professing any Indian religion...

 titles in former British India
British Raj
British Raj was the British rule in the Indian subcontinent between 1858 and 1947; The term can also refer to the period of dominion...

, including modern Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

, Bangladesh
Bangladesh
Bangladesh , officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh is a sovereign state located in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma to the far southeast and by the Bay of Bengal to the south...

, Burma, and Nepal
Nepal
Nepal , officially the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, is a landlocked sovereign state located in South Asia. It is located in the Himalayas and bordered to the north by the People's Republic of China, and to the south, east, and west by the Republic of India...

.

Philippines


See Principalia
Principalia
The Principalía or noble class was the ruling and, usually, the educated upper class in the towns of colonial Philippines, composed of the Gobernadorcillo , and the Cabezas de Barangay who governed the districts. The distinction or status of being part of the Principalía is a heriditary right...

, the sultanates of Maguindanao and Sulu.

Thailand


In Thailand
Thailand
Thailand , officially the Kingdom of Thailand , formerly known as Siam , is a country located at the centre of the Indochina peninsula and Southeast Asia. It is bordered to the north by Burma and Laos, to the east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, and to the...

 (formerly Siam), the title of Prince was divided into three classes depending on the rank of their mothers. Those who were born of a King and had a royal mother (a Queen or a Princess consort) are titled Chaofa Chai (: literally, "Male Celestial Lord"). Those born of a King and a commoner or children of Chaofas are tilted Phra Ong Chao (พระองค์เจ้า). The children of Phra Ong Chaos are titled Mom Chao (หม่อมเจ้า), abbreviated as M.C. (or ม.จ.).

African traditions


A Western model was sometimes copied by emancipated colonial regimes (e.g. Bokassa I's short-lived Central-African Empire in Napoleonic fashion). Otherwise, most of the styles for members of ruling families do not lend themselves well to English translation. Nonetheless, in general the princely style has gradually replaced the colonialist
Colony
In politics and history, a colony is a territory under the immediate political control of a state. For colonies in antiquity, city-states would often found their own colonies. Some colonies were historically countries, while others were territories without definite statehood from their inception....

 title of chief
Tribal chief
A tribal chief is the leader of a tribal society or chiefdom. Tribal societies with social stratification under a single leader emerged in the Neolithic period out of earlier tribal structures with little stratification, and they remained prevalent throughout the Iron Age.In the case of ...

, which does not particularly connote dynastic rank to Westerners, e.g. Swazi Royal Family and Zulu Royal Family.

The title of prince in religion


In states with an element of theocracy
Theocracy
Theocracy is a form of organization in which the official policy is to be governed by immediate divine guidance or by officials who are regarded as divinely guided, or simply pursuant to the doctrine of a particular religious sect or religion....

, this can affect princehood in several ways, such as the style of the ruler (e.g. with a secondary title meaning son or servant of a named divinity), but also the mode of succession (even reincarnation and recognition).

Furthermore, certain religious offices may be considered of princely rank, and/or imply comparable temporal rights.

The Pope
Pope
The Pope is the Bishop of Rome, a position that makes him the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church . In the Catholic Church, the Pope is regarded as the successor of Saint Peter, the Apostle...

, Cardinals, Prince Bishops, Lord Bishop
Lord Bishop
"Lord Bishop" is a traditional form of address used for bishops since the Middle Ages, an era when bishops occupied the feudal rank of 'lord' by virtue of their office...

s, Prince-Provost
Prince-Provost
Prince-Provost is a rare title for a monastic superior with the ecclesiastical style of provost who is a Prince of the Church in the sense that he also ranks as a secular 'prince' , notably a Reichsfürst of the Holy Roman Empire, holding a direct vote in the Reichstag assembly coequal to an actual...

, and Prince-abbot
Prince-abbot
A Prince-Abbot is a title for a cleric who is a Prince of the Church , in the sense of an ex officio temporal lord of a feudal entity, notably a State of the Holy Roman Empire. The secular territory ruled by the head of an abbey is known as Prince-Abbacy or Abbey-principality...

s are referred to as Princes of the Church
Prince of the Church
The term Prince of the Church is nowadays used nearly exclusively for Catholic Cardinals. However the term is historically more important as a generic term for clergymen whose offices hold the secular rank and privilege of a prince or are considered its equivalent...

. Also in Christianity
Christianity
Christianity is a monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus as presented in canonical gospels and other New Testament writings...

, Jesus Christ is sometimes referred to as the Prince of Peace. Other titles for Jesus Christ are Prince of Princes, Prince of the Covenant, and Prince of the Kings of the Earth. Further, Satan
Satan
Satan , "the opposer", is the title of various entities, both human and divine, who challenge the faith of humans in the Hebrew Bible...

 is often titled the Prince of Darkness; and in the Christian
Christian
A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, an Abrahamic, monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as recorded in the Canonical gospels and the letters of the New Testament...

 faith he is also referred to as the Prince of this World and the Prince of the Power of the Air. Another title for Satan, not as common today but apparently so in approximately 30 A.D. by the Pharisees
Pharisees
The Pharisees were at various times a political party, a social movement, and a school of thought among Jews during the Second Temple period beginning under the Hasmonean dynasty in the wake of...

 of the day, was the title Prince of the Devils. Prince of Israel, Prince of the Angels, and Prince of Light are titles given to the Archangel Michael. Some Christian churches also believe that since all Christians, like Jesus Christ, are children of God, then they too are princes and princesses of Heaven. Saint Peter
Saint Peter
Saint Peter or Simon Peter was an early Christian leader, who is featured prominently in the New Testament Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles. The son of John or of Jonah and from the village of Bethsaida in the province of Galilee, his brother Andrew was also an apostle...

, a disciple of Jesus, is also known as the Prince of the Apostles.

See also

  • Auctoritas
    Auctoritas
    Auctoritas is a Latin word and is the origin of English "authority." While historically its use in English was restricted to discussions of the political history of Rome, the beginning of phenomenological philosophy in the twentieth century expanded the use of the word.In ancient Rome, Auctoritas...

    , Dominate
    Dominate
    The Dominate was the "despotic" latter phase of government in the ancient Roman Empire from the conclusion of the Third Century Crisis of 235–284 until the formal date of the collapse of the Western Empire in AD 476. It followed the period known as the Principate...

    , Potestas
    Potestas
    Potestas is a Latin word meaning power or faculty. It is an important concept in Roman Law.-Origin of the concept:The idea of potestas originally referred to the power, through coercion, of a Roman magistrate to promulgate edicts, give action to litigants, etc. This power, in Roman political and...

     and Imperium
    Imperium
    Imperium is a Latin word which, in a broad sense, translates roughly as 'power to command'. In ancient Rome, different kinds of power or authority were distinguished by different terms. Imperium, referred to the sovereignty of the state over the individual...

  • Crown Prince
    Crown Prince
    A crown prince or crown princess is the heir or heiress apparent to the throne in a royal or imperial monarchy. The wife of a crown prince is also titled crown princess....

    , Grand Prince
    Grand Prince
    The title grand prince or great prince ranked in honour below emperor and tsar and above a sovereign prince .Grand duke is the usual and established, though not literal, translation of these terms in English and Romance languages, which do not normally use separate words for a "prince" who reigns...

     and Infante
  • Fils de France
    Fils de France
    Fils de France was the style and rank held by the sons of the kings and dauphins of France. A daughter was known as a fille de France .The children of the dauphin, who was the king's heir apparent, were accorded the same style and status as if they were the king's children instead of his...

     and Petit-Fils de France
  • First Prince of the Blood
  • Fürst
    Fürst
    Fürst is a German title of nobility, usually translated into English as Prince.The term refers to the head of a principality and is distinguished from the son of a monarch, who is referred to as Prinz...

  • Grand Duchy
    Grand duchy
    A grand duchy, sometimes referred to as a grand dukedom, is a territory whose head of state is a monarch, either a grand duke or grand duchess.Today Luxembourg is the only remaining grand duchy...

    , Grand duke
    Grand Duke
    The title grand duke is used in Western Europe and particularly in Germanic countries for provincial sovereigns. Grand duke is of a protocolary rank below a king but higher than a sovereign duke. Grand duke is also the usual and established translation of grand prince in languages which do not...

     and Grand duchess
  • Infante and Infanta
  • Heir apparent
    Heir apparent
    An heir apparent or heiress apparent is a person who is first in line of succession and cannot be displaced from inheriting, except by a change in the rules of succession....

     and Heir presumptive
    Heir Presumptive
    An heir presumptive or heiress presumptive is the person provisionally scheduled to inherit a throne, peerage, or other hereditary honour, but whose position can be displaced by the birth of an heir or heiress apparent or of a new heir presumptive with a better claim to the position in question...

  • King consort
    King consort
    King consort is an alternative title to the more usual "prince consort" - which is a position given in some monarchies to the husband of a reigning queen. It is a symbolic title only, the sole constitutional function of the holder being similar to a prince consort, which is the male equivalent of a...

     and Queen consort
    Queen consort
    A queen consort is the wife of a reigning king. A queen consort usually shares her husband's rank and holds the feminine equivalent of the king's monarchical titles. Historically, queens consort do not share the king regnant's political and military powers. Most queens in history were queens consort...

  • King regnant and Queen regnant
    Queen regnant
    A queen regnant is a female monarch who reigns in her own right, in contrast to a queen consort, who is the wife of a reigning king. An empress regnant is a female monarch who reigns in her own right over an empire....

  • List of British princes and List of British princesses
  • Monsieur
    Monsieur
    ' is an honorific title that used to refer to or address the eldest living brother of the king in the French royal court. It is also a customary French title of respect and term of address for a French-speaking man, corresponding to such English titles as Mr...

     and Madame Royale
    Madame Royale
    Madame Royale was a style customarily used for the eldest living unmarried daughter of a reigning French monarch.It was similar to the style Monsieur, which was typically used by the King's second son...

  • Nobility
    Nobility
    Nobility is a social class which possesses more acknowledged privileges or eminence than members of most other classes in a society, membership therein typically being hereditary. The privileges associated with nobility may constitute substantial advantages over or relative to non-nobles, or may be...

    , Royalty
    Royal family
    A royal family is the extended family of a king or queen regnant. The term imperial family appropriately describes the extended family of an emperor or empress, while the terms "ducal family", "grand ducal family" or "princely family" are more appropriate to describe the relatives of a reigning...

     and Royal and noble ranks
    Royal and noble ranks
    Traditional rank amongst European royalty, peers, and nobility is rooted in Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages. Although they vary over time and between geographic regions , the following is a reasonably comprehensive list that provides information on both general ranks and specific differences.-...

  • Prince of the Apostles
  • Prince consort
    Prince consort
    A prince consort is the husband of a queen regnant who is not himself a king in his own right.Current examples include the Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh , and Prince Henrik of Denmark .In recognition of his status, a prince consort may be given a formal...

     and Princess consort
    Princess consort
    Princess consort is a title or an informal designation normally given to the wife of a sovereign prince. Since a male sovereign ruler is generally titled as a king and not a prince, the title of princess consort is not widely used. More rarely, it may be given to the spouse of a king, if the more...

  • Prince du Sang
    Prince du Sang
    A prince of the blood was a person who was legitimately descended in the male line from the monarch of a country. In France, the rank of prince du sang was the highest held at court after the immediate family of the king during the ancien régime and the Bourbon Restoration...

  • Prince-elector
    Prince-elector
    The Prince-electors of the Holy Roman Empire were the members of the electoral college of the Holy Roman Empire, having the function of electing the Roman king or, from the middle of the 16th century onwards, directly the Holy Roman Emperor.The heir-apparent to a prince-elector was known as an...

     and Prince Regent
    Prince Regent
    A prince regent is a prince who rules a monarchy as regent instead of a monarch, e.g., due to the Sovereign's incapacity or absence ....

  • Prince of the Church
    Prince of the Church
    The term Prince of the Church is nowadays used nearly exclusively for Catholic Cardinals. However the term is historically more important as a generic term for clergymen whose offices hold the secular rank and privilege of a prince or are considered its equivalent...

    : Pope
    Pope
    The Pope is the Bishop of Rome, a position that makes him the leader of the worldwide Catholic Church . In the Catholic Church, the Pope is regarded as the successor of Saint Peter, the Apostle...

    , Cardinal (Roman Catholic), Crown-cardinal
    Crown-cardinal
    A crown-cardinal was a cardinal protector of a Catholic nation, nominated or funded by a Catholic monarch to serve as their representative within the College of Cardinals and, if applicable, exercise the jus exclusivae...

    , Prince-Bishop
    Prince-Bishop
    A Prince-Bishop is a bishop who is a territorial Prince of the Church on account of one or more secular principalities, usually pre-existent titles of nobility held concurrently with their inherent clerical office...

    , Lord Bishop
    Lord Bishop
    "Lord Bishop" is a traditional form of address used for bishops since the Middle Ages, an era when bishops occupied the feudal rank of 'lord' by virtue of their office...

    , Prince-Provost
    Prince-Provost
    Prince-Provost is a rare title for a monastic superior with the ecclesiastical style of provost who is a Prince of the Church in the sense that he also ranks as a secular 'prince' , notably a Reichsfürst of the Holy Roman Empire, holding a direct vote in the Reichstag assembly coequal to an actual...

    , and Prince-abbot
    Prince-abbot
    A Prince-Abbot is a title for a cleric who is a Prince of the Church , in the sense of an ex officio temporal lord of a feudal entity, notably a State of the Holy Roman Empire. The secular territory ruled by the head of an abbey is known as Prince-Abbacy or Abbey-principality...

  • Princess
    Princess
    Princess is the feminine form of prince . Most often, the term has been used for the consort of a prince, or his daughters....

  • Principality
    Principality
    A principality is a monarchical feudatory or sovereign state, ruled or reigned over by a monarch with the title of prince or princess, or by a monarch with another title within the generic use of the term prince....

     and Princely state
    Princely state
    A Princely State was a nominally sovereign entitity of British rule in India that was not directly governed by the British, but rather by an Indian ruler under a form of indirect rule such as suzerainty or paramountcy.-British relationship with the Princely States:India under the British Raj ...


External links