Fürst, Bezeichnung von Hochadeligen#
Prince (Fuerst), term for high-ranking nobility who were especially close to the king. The title of Imperial Prince, who ruled within his territory, has existed since the 13th century. Imperial Princes had both a seat and a vote in the Reichsrat (Imperial Diet). The emperor bestowed the title of Imperial Princes on Austrian families until 1806 in order to promote the spread of Catholicism (Schwarzenberg, Liechtenstein, Auersperg families etc.), later the emperor bestowed the title of Prince on worthy individuals (Metternich). Only the oldest person in the family was entitled to carry the title. Prince-Bishops were bishops with the rights of dominion and sovereignty (Salzburg, Brixen/Bressanone, Trento). The title Prince, like all titles of nobility, was abolished in Austria in 1919.