Barnim, the name of thirteen dukes who ruled over various divisions of the duchy of Pomerania. The following are the most important: -
Barnim I. (c. 1209-1278), called the Good, was the son of Bogislaus II., duke of Pomerania-Stettin, and succeeded to this duchy on his father's death in 1220. After he became of age he was engaged in a long struggle with external enemies, and in 1250 was compelled to recognize the supremacy of the margrave of Brandenburg. Having in 1264 united the whole of Pomerania under his rule, Barnim devoted his energies to improving its internal condition. He introduced German settlers and customs into the duchy, founded many towns, and was extremely generous towards ecclesiastical foundations. He died on the 13th or 14th of November 1278.
Barnim III. (c. 1303-1368), called the Great, was the son of Otto I., duke of Pomerania-Stettin, and took a prominent part in the defence and government of the duchy before his father's death in 1344. A long and intermittent struggle with the representatives of the emperor Louis IV., who had invested his own son Louis with the mark of Brandenburg, enabled him to gain military experience and distinction. A victory gained by him in August 1332 was mainly instrumental in freeing Pomerania for a time from the vexatious claim of Brandenburg to supremacy over the duchy, which moreover he extended by conquest. Barnim assisted the emperor Charles IV. in his struggle with the family of Wittelsbach. He died on the 24th of August 1368.
Barnim XI. (1501-1573), son of Bogislaus X., duke of Pomerania, became duke on his father's death in 1523. He ruled for a time in common with his elder brother George; and after George's death in 1531 he shared the duchy with his nephew Philip I., retaining for himself the duchy of Pomerania-Stettin. The earlier years of his rule were troubled by a quarrel with the margrave of Brandenburg, who wished to annex Pomerania. In 1529, however, a treaty was made which freed Pomerania from the supremacy of Brandenburg on condition that if the ducal family became extinct the duchy should revert to Brandenburg. Barnim adopted the doctrines of Martin Luther, and joined the league of Schmalkalden, but took no part in the subsequent war. But as this attitude left him without supporters he was obliged to submit to the emperor Charles V., to pay a heavy fine, and to accept the Interim, issued from Augsburg in May 1548. In 1569 Barnim handed over his duchy to his grand-nephew, John Frederick, and died at Stettin on the 2nd of June 1573.