Built at the end of the 17th century and expanded during the 18th century, the original palace was commissioned by Sophie Charlotte, the wife of Friedrich III, Elector of Brandenburg, in what was then the village of Lietzow. Frederick desired the more prestigious title of king. However, according to Germanic law at that time, no kingdoms could exist within the Holy Roman Empire, with the exception of the Kingdom of Bohemia.
Frederick persuaded Leopold I, Archduke of Austria and Holy Roman Emperor, to allow Prussia to be elevated to a kingdom and crowned himself Frederick I, King in Prussia (not King OF Prussia) in 1701. His grandson Frederick II (Frederick the Great) would later finally obtain the title, King “of” Prussia.
An Orangery was later built on the west end of the palace and the central area was extended with a large domed tower and a larger vestibule. This design is what you see today. On top of the dome is a wind vane in the form of a gilded statue representing Fortune.
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