Born Oct. 24, 1853, in Oberhofen, Switzerland; died May 3, 1928, in Bad Nauheim. German diplomat; count.
Pourtalès joined the diplomatic service at the end of the 1870’s. From 1907 to 1914 he was the German ambassador to Russia, where he strove to undermine Russia’s relationship with France and Great Britain. On July 19 (Aug. 1), 1914, he handed the Russian minister of foreign affairs S. D. Sazonov a note containing Germany’s declaration of war against Russia. From 1914 to 1918, Pourtalès was a councillor to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He retired in July 1918.