04.03.

1152: Frederick Barbarossa Elected King of Germany

1152: Frederick Barbarossa Elected King of Germany
Photo Credit To http://www.mainpost.de/storage/pic/mpnlneu/ws/2987289_1_18FQI0.jpg

Germany was so powerful during the reign of Frederick Barbarossa that he became a national legend. The Nazis named their invasion of the USSR in 1941 “Operation Barbarossa” in memory of this mighty ruler.

On this day in 1152 the German princes elected Frederick Barbarossa as the King of Germany. Germany was, in fact, an electoral monarchy, unlike other European countries, where the throne was usually hereditary. The election of Frederick Barbarossa was performed in Frankfurt, an important city where almost all medieval elections of German kings were held.

Frederick had an interesting nickname, Barbarossa (Italian: “Red Beard”). Namely, that is how the Italians called him due to the color of his beard. In Germany, he was known as Rotbart, which has the same meaning. He originated from the famous family of Hohenstaufen, named after the fortified Staufen Castle in Swabia, near Stuttgart.

Germany was so powerful during the reign of Frederick Barbarossa that he became a national legend. A myth was created that he never really died but is sleeping in a hidden cave in the Kyffhäuser Mountains and will one day rise again and renew the strength of Germany. The Nazis named their invasion of the USSR in 1941 “Operation Barbarossa” in memory of this mighty ruler.

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