coat of arms of the prince of orange (1815–1884)
coat of arms
of the counts of orange of the first house of orange.
coat of arms
of the city/town of orange
in the vaucluse. they were granted to the city by the princes of orange of the house of des baux in the last quarter of the 12th century.
prince of orange (or princess of orange if the holder is female) is a title originally associated with the sovereign principality of orange, in what is now southern france. under the treaty of utrecht of 1713, frederick william i of prussia ceded the principality of orange to king louis xiv of france (while retaining the title as part of his dynastic titulature). after william iii of england died without children, a dispute arose between johan willem friso and frederick i of prussia, which was settled in the treaty of partition (1732); consequently, friso's son, william iv had to share use of the title "prince of orange" (which had accumulated prestige in the netherlands and throughout the protestant world) with frederick william i of prussia. with the emergence of the kingdom of the netherlands, the title is traditionally borne by the heir apparent of the dutch monarch. originally only worn by men, since 1983 the title descends via absolute primogeniture, which means that the holder can be either prince or princess of orange.
the dutch royal dynasty, the house of orange-nassau, is not the only family to claim the dynastical title. rival claims to the title have been made by german emperors and kings of the house of hohenzollern and by the head of the french noble family of mailly. the current users of the title are princess catharina-amalia of the netherlands (orange-nassau), georg friedrich, prince of prussia (hohenzollern), and guy, marquis de mailly-nesle (mailly).