Peter Ernst I von Mansfeld (1517–1604)


Peter Ernst I von Mansfeld is born on 20 July in Heldrungen Castle in the County of Mansfeld (present-day Thuringia).


Participates in the capture of Tunis led by Emperor Charles V and is subsequently knighted by him. While in Italy, he visits Rome's ancient ruins and discovers the country's Renaissance art for the first time.


Marries Marguerite de Bréderode in Brussels. After the death of his first wife, he remarries in 1562 to Marie de Montmorency.


Appointed governor of the Duchy of Luxembourg and the county of Chiny (a post he would hold until his death) and made a knight of the Order of the Golden Fleece.


Kept as a prisoner of war at Château de Vincennes in France.


Plays a decisive role in Philip II's defeat of the king of France, Henry II, at the Battle of Saint-Quentin.


Construction begins on La Fontaine Castle.


Appointed chief adviser to the governor-general in Brussels at the start of the Dutch Revolt. He is later sidelined during the bloody repression led by the duke of Alba.


Plays a decisive role in Charles IX's defeat of the Huguenots in the Battle of Moncontour, in Poitou. Sustains serious injuries and is treated by Ambroise Paré, the father of modern surgery.


Returns to the political foreground in Brussels and participates in King of Spain Philip II's reconquest of the Netherlands. Takes part in the Battle of Antwerp led by the governor-general Alexander Farnese in 1585 as second-in-command of the royal army.


Stands in for Alexander Farnese as governor-general of the Netherlands on multiple occasions and later assumes the post upon the duke of Parma and Piacenza's death.



Made a prince of the Holy Roman Empire together with his youngest son, Charles, by Emperor Rudolf II.


Welcomes the new rulers of the Spanish Netherlands Archduke Albert VII and Archduchess Isabella to Luxembourg and throws a magnificent party in his gardens in Clausen.


Dies in La Fontaine Castle on 25 May and is buried on 1 June in his family's burial chapel on Knuedler.