The ruling house of Reuss (a tiny German principality) had a tradition, dating back to the twelfth century, of naming every male "Friedrich." As the family grew, it became necessary to differentiate all the Friedrichs by number: at a couple of points, they had to re-start the sequence because the numbering became too complicated (Walter
, the Reuss family tree is set out in Grote, pp. 248-251).
EDIT: I can't understand how I made this mistake if I had the "Grote" in front of me, but the Reuss family name was "Heinrich," not "Friedrich." More information about this family can be found here
Hi there - very interesting.. My family name a long time ago was Reuss. You can e-mail me at [email protected]
A family name 'Reuss' indicates that these persons are most probably from Reuss - like Hess'/Hesses are from Hessia etc.
There have bewn up to ten different small independent territories of the various Reuss dynasties - now only the Reuß-Köstritz dynasty survived.
Reuss as a family name isn't that uncommon in Germany.
just checking in to say,
don't leave your email address as such online... at least add a space or two somewhere in the middle of it,
as the internet is beset with what they call spybots which, I gather, look around for email addresses on forums, and then you get, at the least, spam. (well, most of us get it however - but floating your email online is not recommended.)
On the other hand, maybe you know all this and have a great antispam filter.
Emperor Wilhelm II of Germany (1859-1941) had the names of Friedrich Wilhelm Viktor Albert. He used his second name of Wilhelm as his regnal name.