Habsburg Castle, after whom his dynasty was named, can still be seen in northern Switzerland today, on the territory of Aargau canton.
Rudolf of Habsburg, the first member of that dynasty to attain the rank of Holy Roman Emperor, was born on this day in 1218. Rudolf is responsible for the ascent of the Habsburg family from local counts to one of the most powerful ruling families in Europe. He managed this primarily thanks to his election as emperor after the fall of the previous imperial dynasty, the Hohenstaufens.
Rudolf was born in southern Germany, but the main estates of his family were on the territory of today’s Switzerland and the French-German border area (today the French province of Alsace). Habsburg Castle, after which the dynasty was named, can today be seen in northern Switzerland, on the territory of Aargau canton. Rudolf lived to the age of 73, dying in the German city of Speyer. He was buried in the local cathedral.