King Ludwig II

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    "Da Kini" in his youth.

    Ludwig the Second, born Ludwig Otto Friedrich Wilhelm von Wittelsbach was king of Bavaria from 1863 to 1885, and the last king to rule it as an indpendent state. He was famously eccentric and built many of the most beautiful castles in Bavaria, the most famous of which is Neuschwanstein. He enjoyed myths and legends and Wagnerian opera, which earned him the nickname "Märchenkönig" ("fairy-tale king"). However, the king's well-known eccentricity also brought him the less flattering nicknames "the crazy king" or "Mad King Ludwig".

    It was largely Ludwig's patronage that allowed Richard Wagner to create his famous operas detached from financial concerns.

    Works that feature Ludwig II of Bavaria


    • Ludwig II (1922)
    • Ludwig by Luschino Visconti (1972)
    • Ludwig - Requiem for a Virgin King, another 1972 film
    • Ludwig 1881 (1993)
    • Ludwig der Zweite, König von Bayern (1993)
    • Ludwig II: Glanz und Ende eines Königs ("Splendor and End of a King") (1995)


    • Ludwig II by You Higuri.


    • Ludwig II
    • Ludwig2: The New Musical


    • My Letters from Ludwig: A Novel about King Ludwig II of Bavaria

    King Ludwig II provides examples of the following tropes:
    1. Pronounced (roughly) "duh keeney".
    2. Here is the whole original article: "There is a quite popular (and also quite comprehensible) theory of the accident murder of Ludwig II of Bavaria, who mysteriously drowned was shot to death in Lake Starnberg, after being retired. By his own government. Crash Course: Ludwig and his doctor, Bernhard von Gudden (one of the conspirators; the very one who officially declared Ludwig to be nuts and let him sign his own abdication), take an afternoon stroll through the royal gardens of the Castle Berg (Schloss Berg) on the 13th of June 1886, at the banks of Lake Starnberg, where Ludwig is held captive by a group of apostate Ministers. This was the last time both men were seen alive. Only in the late evening, and after an extensive search of the grounds, Ludwig's and von Gudden's bodies were found drifting in the lake. Official sources state that both men started a fight, after Ludwig tried to flee by wading out into the lake (in a very very cold June). Well, there's something wrong with this theory; the facts and the coincidences: Ludwig's and von Gudden's bodies was found in a shallow reed water, so it must have been drifting there the whole time. The problem is, it is very difficult for a nearly 2-meter tall man like Ludwig to drown in shallow water. There also wasn't any water present in Ludwig's lungs (Granted, he could have died of hypothermia instead.) Both von Gudden and Ludwig carried Pocket watches. Pocket watches work for app. another 30 seconds after placed in water. But von Gudden's watch came to a halt a whole hour after Ludwig's. Both watches could not have made contact with the lake within the same hour. If there really was a struggle between Ludwig and von Gudden, then it was hard to stay unnoticed in the promenade-like terrain. At the time, three gendarmes patrolled the royal gardens (which ran along the lake, was about 1.1 km long, and only 300 m wide as seen on 47°57'55.86"N 11°20'58.74"E; the whole stretch of woodland alongside the lake are the royal gardens, the big house in the upper area is Schloss Berg). One guard patrolled the border of the gardens, one patrolled the main path, and one was actually sent after Ludwig and von Gudden eleven min. or so later, just to be extra super-safe, that nothing happened. Perhaps a clear case of The Guards Must Be Crazy. After Ludwig's body was found, it was laid out in one of the various boathouses by the search party. This boathouse was demolished shortly afterwards. There were dozens of witnesses on that day, either among the Castle personnel, the search parties, or other groups. Over an incredibly short period of time, this group of people dispersed; some emigrated to America, some moved away, some were promoted into different corners of the earth, some received generous gifts of money, and one of the gendarmes was found in his hut, with a very deep head wound (again, official sources talk about suicide). A relative of the doctor in charge of the autopsy of Ludwig, wrote into her memoirs, that the doctor told her on his death bed, that he found two bullet entrance holes in Ludwig's back, and that he was forced to sign a document of secrecy. How reliable this source is, though, is debatable. Fact is, that the renegade politicians had a bunch of good reasons, to forcefully hinder Ludwig from escaping, if necessary also with death. Ludwig indeed was, to a certain extent, insane, had a Foreign Culture Fetish (ranging from French Baroque to Oriental stuff), and was a Cloudcuckoolander, which enabled him to spend state funds on building Fairytale Castles, like Neuschwanstein, Linderhof, and Herrenchiemsee (only later it was revealed, that Otto von Bismarck financed Ludwig with Prussian funds, in order to convince him to join a military pact with Prussia). And he was immensely popular with his people. The first attempt to overthrow Ludwig ended with the conspirators (including von Gudden) being awaited by gendarmes and a mob with torches and pitchforks. So they had to overthrow him quickly and unnoticed. So they abducted the depressive monarch from Neuschwanstein, and kept him detained in his childhood residence, Berg Castle, until an adequate successor could be found to take over his throne (Prince Regent Luitpold was chosen later on). If Ludwig would have ever gained some control over the people, to inform them of his current situation, the government itself could have been overrun in a coup' d' état by loyalists. He therefore had to be kept away from everyone, just like Napoleon on St. Helena. A more popular theory says, that Ludwig conspired with Berg Castle's head of fishing (a remaining loyalist) to pick him up with a boat, and row him onto the other side of the lake, where he would be exiled into Austria by his Childhood Cousin Sweetheart, Elizabeth (informally "Sissi"). But the plan went horribly wrong, as gendarmes caught up with Ludwig while he waded out into the lake to his master of fishing's boat, and shot him in the back repeatedly. The master of fishing is said to have witnessed it all. To silence him, authorities made him the mayor of the town shortly after, and gave him a gift of money (several million Euros by today's standards) And that is even factual, too. And too much of a coincidence..."