Solms Family Tree

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The following is an account of The House of Solms and its genealogy.

The oldest recorded mention of the ancient Frankish name von Solms (‘Sulmissa’, which seems to be derived from ‘swalm’ [in Frankish] = ‘Schwalle’ [in German] = ‘torrent’ [in English]) occurs in the Lorsch Codex. There a bequest of land and buildings ‘super fluuium Sulmissa’ is recorded as having occurred on 28 May 788AD. The land referred to was apparently located in the modern Oberndorf, on the eastern side of the River Solms. This bequest was made by a cleric named Rudolf [‘Rudolfi in Sulmissa’]. His links with the earliest lords of the House of Solms are unknown. The family seat, too, is said by some to have been located initially in Oberndorf, but the Burgsolms – an ancient castle located in the river itself, now completely destroyed – seems more likely. The family appears to have possessed several estates in the region long before 1129, when the first recorded Lord of Solms appears as a witness in a document in which Clementia Grafin von Gleiberg founded the convent of Schiffenberg:

Marquard I, first recorded Edelherr [Lord] von Solms (‘de Sulmese’), fl. 1129-1141.

Heinrich (‘Henricus de Sulmese’) probably his brother, possibly a son, then appears in 1156 as a monk at the monastry Ilbenstadt.

NN, a daughter of Marquard I, inherited his estates, apparently including Burgsolms. She married Otto Graf von Gleiberg (s.o. Dietrich Graf von Gleiberg, whose domain derived from the House of Luxembourg) who then assumed the title Graf [Count] von Solms. (An alternative account claims that Marquard I had a son, who married a daughter of a Luxembourg Graf.)

Heinrich I, Graf von Solms (possibly their son) then appears in a document dated 1212.

Hartung von Solms (possibly Heinrich’s brother) also appears in documents dated 1161-1213.

Thereafter, the continuous record of the family tree begins:

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