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(born 1175/1182died May 19, 1218, Harzburg Castle, Lower Saxony) German king and Holy Roman emperor. He was elected German king (1198) by the Guelph faction (seeGuelphs and Ghibellines) but was opposed by the Hohenstaufens, who elected Philip of Swabia. The two factions were at war for several years, but after Philip's murder in 1208 a new election gave the throne to Otto. He was crowned emperor (1209) by Pope Innocent III after agreeing not to claim Sicily. When he violated this pact and conquered southern Italy (1210), the German princes invited Frederick II to replace him. With his uncle, John of England, Otto invaded France, Frederick's ally; defeated at the Battle of Bouvines, he was deposed in 1215.
Variants of OTTO IV
Otto IV or Otto of Brunswick
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Otto IV, visit Britannica.com.
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