Maximilian II, also known as Max Emanuel or Maximilian Emanuel, was a Wittelsbach ruler of Bavaria and a Prince-elector of the Holy Roman Empire. He was also the last governor of the Spanish Netherlands and duke of Luxembourg. An able soldier, his ambition led to conflicts that limited his ultimate dynastic achievements.
He was born in Munich to Ferdinand Maria, Elector of Bavaria and Henriette Adelaide of Savoy. His maternal grandparents were Victor Amadeus I of Savoy and Christine Marie of France, daughter of King Henri IV.
Maximilian inherited the elector's mantle while still a minor in 1679 and remained under his uncle Maximilian Philipp's regency until 1680. By 1683 he was already embarked on a military career, fighting in the defense of Vienna against the attempt of the Ottoman Empire to extend their possessions further into Europe. He returned to court for long enough to marry Maria Antonia, daughter of Leopold I, Holy Roman Emperor and Margaret Theresa of Spain, on July 15, 1685 in Vienna, Austria. This marriage was very unhappy since the couple disliked each other, but it was successful in producing a desired heir for both Bavaria and the Spanish monarchy. Maximilian Emanuel's fame was assured when, in 1688, he led the capture of Belgrade from the Turks, with the full support of Serbian insurgents under the command of Jovan Monasterlija.
Maximilian Emanuel was one of many who sought to claim the Spanish throne pending the death of Charles II of Spain.
In 1726, Max Emanuel died of a stroke. He is buried in the crypt of the Theatinerkirche in Munich.
|Reigned as||In Country||From||To||Coins Issued|
|Maximilian II. Emanuel (Prince-elector Maximilian II Emanuel)||Bavaria, Electorate of||26 April 1679||26 February 1726|
|Maximilien II Emmanuel (Duke Maximilian II Emanuel), Prince-elector of Bavaria||Luxemburg, Duchy of||29 January 1712||26 February 1726|