Friedrich von Schrötter

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Friedrich Leopold Freiherr von Schrötter (1743 – 1815) was a German Junker, Prussian government minister and until 1806 Reichsfreiherr of the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation.

Schrötter was born in Wohnsdorf near Friedland (today Kurortnoye, Kaliningrad Oblast, Russia) and served in a dragoon regiment of the Prussian Army during the Seven Years' War. Appointed as minister in charge of East Prussia after the death of King Frederick the Great, he followed the free trade economic policies then coming into vogue, loosening restrictions on the grain trade in that province. He died in Berlin.

Schrötter is perhaps most famous for having quipped of the Prussian army during the reign of Frederick the Great that "Prussia was not a country with an army, but an army with a country."


In 1941 the Polish city of Płock, which was annexed to the Province of East Prussia after the Poland Campaign in 1939, was renamed Schröttersburg in honor of Schrötter. However, the name disappeared soon after the end of the Second World War.


Regarding personal names: Freiherr was a title before 1919, but now is regarded as part of the surname. It is translated as Baron. Before the August 1919 abolition of nobility as a legal class, titles preceded the full name when given (Graf Helmuth James von Moltke). Since 1919, these titles, along with any nobiliary prefix (von, zu, etc.), can be used, but are regarded as a dependent part of the surname, and thus come after any given names (Helmuth James Graf von Moltke). Titles and all dependent parts of surnames are ignored in alphabetical sorting. The feminine forms are Freifrau and Freiin.