Karl of Liechtenstein was raised in 1608 to the rank of hereditary prince of the Holy Roman Empire and was thereby the first prince of his family.
Prince Johann Adam Andreas acquired in 1699 the lordship of Schellenberg and in 1712 the county of Vaduz. In 1719 the Emperor Karl VI unified Vaduz and Schellenberg and elevated them to the rank of Imperial Principality Liechtenstein. Thereby the Principality of Liechtenstein was established.
Until 1938 the princes of Liechtenstein lived in Vienna, Lower Austria and Moravia. They had important functions in the military and diplomacy domains of the Bohemian crown and later Habsburg Monarchy and administrated their extensive properties in Lower Austria, Bohemia, Silesia and Moravia.
Following the „Anschluss“ of Austria to the German Reich in 1938 and a rapidely deteriorating political situation in Czechoslovakia, Prince Franz Joseph II became the first prince to take up permanent residence in Liechtenstein.