Adolph I, Duke of Cleves

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Adolph I, Duke of Cleves
Adolf IV van Kleef-Mark.jpg
Adolph I, Duke of Cleves
Spouse(s) Agnes of the Palatinate
Marie of Burgundy
Noble family House of La Marck
Father Adolph III, Count of Mark
Mother Margaret of Jülich
Born (1373-08-02)2 August 1373
Died 23 September 1448(1448-09-23) (aged 75)
Carthusian monastery at Wesel

Adolph I of Cleves (2 August 1373 – 23 September 1448) was the second Count of Cleves and the fourth Count of Mark.


He was the son of Adolph III, Count of Mark, and Margaret of Jülich (and thus the brother of Margaret of Cleves).

After his father's death in 1394, he became Count of Cleves. In 1397 he defeated his uncle William VII of Jülich, 1st Duke of Berg in the battle of Kleverhamm and became Lord of Ravenstein.

When his brother Dietrich IX, Count of Mark died in battle in 1398, he also became Count of Mark. Adolph further expanded his influence by marrying a daughter of the Duke of Burgundy. As a result Cleves was raised to a Duchy by the Holy Roman Emperor, Sigismund, in 1417.

From 1409 onwards he faced opposition from his younger brother Gerhard, who claimed the County of Mark. By 1423, their dispute resulted in an armed conflict, with Gerhard allying himself with the Archbishop of Cologne.

A peace was signed between the two brothers in 1430 and confirmed in 1437. As a result, Gerhard ruled the largest part of Mark, but was to be succeeded by his nephew John. He was not allowed to call himself Count of Mark, but has to use the title Count zur Mark. After Gerhard's death in 1461, the County of Mark and the Duchy of Cleves were reunited again.

Marriage and children

Shortly before the year 1400 he married Agnes, daughter of Rupert of Germany and Elisabeth of Nuremberg. Agnes died a year later with no issue.
In 1406 Adolf married Marie of Burgundy, daughter of John the Fearless and Margaret of Bavaria. They had the following issue:

Adolph I, Duke of Cleves
Born: 2 August 1373 Died: 23 September 1448
Preceded by
Dietrich IX, Count of Mark
Count of Mark
1398–1448/ de facto 1430
Succeeded by
Gerhard, Count of Mark
Preceded by
Adolf III, Count of Cleves
Count of Cleves
Raised to Duchy
New creation Duke of Cleves
Succeeded by
John I, Duke of Cleves


16. Eberhard II, Count of the Mark (c.1249–1308)
8. Engelbert II of the Mark (c.1275–1328)
17. Irmengard of Berg (c.1256–1294)
4. Adolph II of the Mark (c.1314–1347)
18. John of Arberg (?-bef 1287)
9. Matilda of Arenberg (c.1280–1349)
19. Catharine of Jülich (c.1250-aft 1287)
2. Adolph I of Kleve-Mark (1334–1394)
20. Dietrich VII of Cleves (c.1256–1305)
10. Dietrich VIII of Cleves (1291–1346)
21. Margaret of Habsburg (c.1273–1333)
5. Margaret of Cleves (c.1310-aft 1348)
22. Reginald I of Guelders (c.1255–1326)
11. Margaret of Guelders (1297–1333)
23. Margaret of Flanders (c.1265–1331)
1. Adolph I, Duke of Cleves
24. Gerhard V of Jülich (bef 1250–1328)
12. William V, Duke of Jülich (c.1299–1361)
25. Elizabeth of Brabant-Aarschot (c.1280–1350/55)
6. Gerhard VI of Jülich, Count of Berg and Ravensberg (c.1325–1360)
26. William I, Count of Hainaut (1286–1337)
13. Joanna of Hainaut (1311/13-1374)
27. Joan of Valois (c.1294–1342)
3. Margaret of Jülich (c.1350–1425/29)
28. Otto III of Ravensberg (1246–1305)
14. Otto IV, Count of Ravensberg (bef 1276–1328)
29. Hedwig of Lippe (c.1245–1315)
7. Margaret of Ravensberg (c.1320–1389)
30. Henry of Berg, Lord of Windeck (bef 1247–1290/95)
15. Margaret of Berg-Windeck (?-1339)
31. Agnes of Mark (bef 1258-?)