REICHENSPERGER, AUGUST (1808-1895), German politician, was born at Coblenz on the 22nd of March 1808, studied law and entered government service, becoming counsellor to the court of appeal (Appellationsgerichtsrat) at Cologne in 1849. He was a member of the German parliament at Frankfort in 1848, when he attached himself to the Right, and of the Erfurt parliament in 1850, when he voted against the Prussian Union. From 1850 to 1863 he sat in the Prussian Lower House, from 1867 to 1884 in the Reichstag, and from 1879 onwards also in the Prussian Chamber of Deputies. Originally of Liberal tendencies, he developed from 1837 onwards ultramontane opinions, founded in 1852 the Catholic group which in 1861 took the name of the Centre party (Centrum) and became one of its most conspicuous orators. He died on the 16th of July 1895 at Cologne. He published a considerable number of works on art and architecture, including Die christlich-germanische Baukunst (Trier, 1852, 3rd ed., 1860); Fingerzeige auf dem Gebiete der christlichen Kunst (Leipzig, 1854); Augustus Pugin, der Neubegründer der christlichen Kunst in England (Freiburg, 1877).
See L. v. Pastor, August Reichensperger, 2 vols. (Freiburg-im-Breisgau, 1899).
His brother, Peter Reichensperger (1810-1892), counsellor to the appeal court at Cologne (1850) and until 1879 to the Obertribunal at Berlin, was elected to the Reichstag in 1867 as a member of the Liberal Opposition, but subsequently joined the Centre party. In the Kulturkampf he took an active part on the ultramontane side. He had been a member of the Prussian National Assembly in 1848, and in 1888 he published his Erlebnisse eines alten Parlamentariers im Revolutionsjahr 1848.