Europe has a long history as different families took control and new kingdoms were established. Dynasties arose from the ashes of conquests, while others lost their family's fortune during a particular struggle. There were a few families richer than we could ever imagine and set the bar for what it means to be truly wealthy.
This list was created to showcase these family dynasties that have managed to outshine the others throughout the span of time. They were, and some still are, richer than our wildest imaginations. Keep reading to learn about the ten richest family dynasties in European history!
10 Saxe Coburg and Gotha Family
This was the first European dynasty to come to light and a large one at that. Their net worth is unknown, but the fact that they occupied thrones in Belgium, Bulgaria, and Poland would make us believe they were fairly wealthy for the time period.
The first member died in 982, and the dynasty finally ended in 1917 when anti-German opinions prompted them to change their last name. They changed it to Windsor, and you might recognize it because it is the last name of the British Royal Family to this day.
This dynasty began back in 1861 when Clemens and August Brenninkmeijer opened their first clothing shop in the Netherlands. It quickly grew popular across Europe and back in in 1922 they opened the first C&A shop. This family is very private, but it is known that over 200 members of this family work within the company.
They do not flaunt their wealth and rarely give interviews, but the family has said the children are subject to a review before being allowed to participate in the family's company affairs. The family is estimated to be worth upwards of £5 billion, but the true number will probably be kept a secret until the end of time.
8 The Romanov Family
The Romanov family is the last imperial family to rule Russia, and they were the wealthiest. Their reign began in 1613 and spanned eighteen generations of leaders including Peter the Great, Catherine the Great, and Nicholas II. The final Czar, Nicholas II, was overthrown in 1917 during the Bolshevik Revolution and his entire family was killed by their troops.
Nicholas II was not well-liked as workers rose up against the monarchy and his involvement in World War One only decreased his popularity. This dynasty was set to fail, but not before they made sure their name was forever planted in the history books.
7 The House of Normandy
His legacy went on to last only three generations, but his conquests in the field of battle made him the richest man during this time period. Their reign ended with the death of William's grandchild, Stephen, back in 1154 when the Treaty of Wallingford named a new ruler.
This family created the Tetra Pak Packaging company, and its dynasty lives on to this very day. Hans Kristian Rausing is the heir to his father's throne, and his father alone has an estimated net worth of $12 billion. The father just passed this last week, so it will be interesting to see where the company goes from here.
They are from Sweden and the company was founded back in 1944 and it has stayed in the family ever since. The company moved from its home in Sweden in 1985 to the UK to avoid the high taxes the country had placed on their business.
5 The Fugger Family
This German family dynasty began with a simple weaver who left his home to find a fortune in the city back in 1367. They became masters at trading after he married into wealth and eventually found himself in charge of the sale of indulgences from the Church. This job was given to Jakob Fugger, which is why his gravestone tells the world he accumulated an extraordinary wealth.
The Fugger's bank account funded conquests all over Europe, but eventually, they became bankrupt and the company folded after 300 years of prosperity. It split into three separate branches that still exist today, and who are far from hurting for money.
The ancestry of this family goes back almost 1,000 years, but their beginning of wealth didn't start until 1677 when they acquired land through marriage. They create real estate that is desired by people all over the world, and now they have grown to become one of the largest privately-owned property companies.
Their goal is to have a positive impact on communities, and it's obvious they have continued to succeed in that goal as Hugh Grosvenor has a net worth of $12.4 billion. We can only imagine what the finances of the entire family must look like.
This family originated from Germany in the 1450s and went on to create an enormous empire through banking. They went on to settle all over Europe in cities such as Vienna, London, and Naples. They have held collections of things in a field of interests like rare cars, famous paintings, and expensive wines.
It is said that Jacob Rothschild has a net worth of $5 billion, but no family comes without their quarrels. He resigned from N M Rothschild & Sons back in 1980 due to a family dispute and went on to pursue other business ventures in banking under his name.
2 The Agnelli Family
This family began its legacy back in 1899 when Giovanni Agnelli helped found the FIAT Motor Company. They went on to own Ferarri, Lanci, Alfa Romeo, and Chrysler as the years passed.
They also are known for their ownership of the football club in Italy known as Juventus F.C. since 1923. The current chairman of the company from the family is John Elkann and he was personally chosen to be the heir of the family's empire back in 1997 by his grandfather.
1 The Heineken Family
You probably recognize this name, especially if you like to drink, because they are the creators of the beer called Heineken. This empire started back in 1864 when Gerard Heineken bought a brewery in Amsterdam. They have created a brand that is still recognizable to this day and now there is the sole heir left to the throne until her children are old enough.
Her name is Charlene de Carvalho-Heineken, and she is worth $17.3 billion. She was responsible for bringing this beer to America following prohibition, and now she is making it even bigger than it was before.