Habsburg dynasty family that ruled the Duchy (later Archduchy) of Austria from 1278. In 1526 they gained possession of the kingdoms of Bohemia and Hungary (including Transcarpathia), and from 1452 to 1806 members of the family were the emperors of the Holy Roman Empire; in the 19th century, they took the title of Emperor of Austria (from 1867 the Dual Monarchy of Austria-Hungary). The Habsburgs also acquired the titles of King of Galicia and Lodomeria (Volodymeria) after the annexation of Galicia in 1772, and Prince of Bukovyna in 1849. Maria Theresa (1740–80), Joseph II (1780–90), Leopold II (1790–2), Francis I (1792–1835), Ferdinand I (1835–48), Francis Joseph I (1848–1916), and Charles I (1916–18) were all Habsburgs who ruled over Galicia and Bukovyna. In general, the policy of the Habsburgs was oriented towards maintaining a centralized empire, to which end they followed the maxim of divide et impera. They tolerated national differences in cultural matters, but repressed any separatist movements. In socioeconomic affairs, Austria under the Habsburgs maintained the non-German provinces as internal colonies.

The progenitor of the House of Habsburg may have been Guntram the Rich, a count in the Breisgau who lived in the 10th century, and forewith farther back as the early medieval Adalrich, Duke of Alsace, father of the Etichonids from which Habsburg derives. His grandson Radbot, Count of Habsburg founded the Habsburg Castle, after which the Habsburgs are named. The origins of the castle's name, located in what is now the Swiss canton of Aargau, are uncertain. There is disagreement on whether the name is derived from the High German Habichtsburg (hawk castle), or from the Middle High German word hab/hap meaning ford, as there is a river with a ford nearby. The first documented use of the name by the dynasty itself has been traced to the year 1108.The Habsburg Castle was the family seat in the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.The Habsburgs expanded their influence through arranged marriages and by gaining political privileges, especially countship rights in Zürichgau, Aargau and Thurgau. In the 13th century, the house aimed its marriage policy at families in Upper Alsace and Swabia. They were also able to gain high positions in the church hierarchy for their members. Territorially, they often profited from the extinction of other noble families such as the House of Kyburg.By the second half of the 13th century, count Rudolph IV (1218–1291) had become one of the most influential territorial lords in the area between the Vosges Mountains and Lake Constance. Due to these impressive preconditions, on 1 October, 1273, Rudolph was chosen as the King of the Romans and received the name Rudolph I of Germany.In 1282, the Habsburgs gained the rulership of the Duchy of Austria, which they then held for over 600 years, until 1918. Through the forged privilegium maius document , a special bond was created between the house and Austria. The document, forged at the behest of Rudolf IV, Duke of Austria (1339–1365), also attempted to introduce rules to preserve the unity of the family's Austrian lands. In the long term, this indeed succeeded, but Rudolph's descendants ignored the rule, leading to the separation of the Albertian and Leopoldian family lines in 1379.By marrying Elisabeth of Luxembourg, the daughter of Holy Roman Emperor Sigismund in 1437, Duke Albert V (1397–1439) became the ruler of Bohemia and Hungary, expanding the family's political horizons. The next year, Albert V was crowned as the King of the Romans as Albert II. After his early death in war with the Turks in 1439, and after the death of his son Ladislaus Postumus in 1457, the Habsburgs lost Bohemia and Hungary again. National kingdoms were established in these areas, and the Habsburgs were not able to restore their influence there for decades.In 1440, Frederick III was chosen by the electoral college to succeed Albert II as the king. Several Habsburg kings had attempted to gain the imperial throne over the years, but success finally arrived on 19 March, 1452, when Pope Nicholas V crowned Frederick III as the Holy Roman Emperor in a grand ceremony held in Rome. In Frederick III, the Pope found an important political ally with whose help he was able to counter the conciliar movement.While in Rome, Frederick III married Eleanor of Portugal, enabling him to build a network of connections with dynasties in the west and southeast of Europe. Frederick was rather distant to his family; Eleanor, by contrast, had a great influence on the raising and education of Frederick's children, and therefore played an important role in the family's rise to prominence. After Frederick III's coronation, the Habsburgs were able to hold the imperial throne almost continuously for centuries, until 1806.As emperor, Frederick III took a leading role inside the family and positioned himself as the judge over the family's internal conflicts, often making use of the privilegium maius. He was able to restore the unity of the house's Austrian lands, as the Albertinian line was now extinct. Territorial integrity was also strengthened by the extinction of the Tyrolean branch of the Leopoldian line in 1490/1496. Frederick's aim was to make Austria a united country, stretching from the Rhine to the Mur and Leitha.On the external front, one of Frederick's main achievements was the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), in which he forced Charles the Bold of Burgundy to give his daughter Mary of Burgundy as wife to Frederick's son Maximilian.The wedding took place on the evening of 16 August 1477 and ultimately resulted in the Habsburgs acquiring control of the Low Countries. After Mary's early death in 1482, Maximilian attempted to secure the Burgundian heritance to one of his and Mary's children Philip the Handsome. Charles VIII of France contested this, using both military and dynastic means, but the Burgundian succession was finally ruled in favour of Philip in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493.After the death of his father in 1493, Maximilian was proclaimed the new King of the Romans, receiving the name Maximilian I. Maximilian was initially unable to travel to Rome to receive the Imperial title from the Pope, due to opposition from Venice and from the French who were occupying Milan, as well a refusal from the Pope due to enemy forces being present on his territory. In 1508, Maximilian proclaimed himself as the "chosen Emperor," and this was also recognized by the Pope due to changes in political alliances. This had a historical consequence in that, in the future, the Roman King would also automatically become Emperor, without needing the Pope's consent. In 1530, Emperor Charles V became the last person to be crowned as the Emperor by the Pope.A map of the dominion of the Habsburgs following the Battle of Mühlberg (1547) as depicted in The Cambridge Modern History Atlas (1912); Habsburg lands are shaded green, but do not include the lands of the Holy Roman Empire over which they presided, nor the vast Castilian holdings outside of Europe, particularly in the New World.Maximilian's rule (1493–1519) was a time of great expansion for the Habsburgs. In 1497, Maximilian's son Philip the Handsome (also known as Phillip the Fair) married Joanna of Castile, also known as Joan the Mad, heiress of Castile, Aragon, and most of Spain. Phillip and Joan had six children, the eldest of whom became Charles V and inherited the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon (including their colonies in the New World), Southern Italy, Austria, and the Low Countries.The foundations for the later empire of Austria-Hungary were laid in 1515 by the means of a double wedding between Louis, only son of Vladislaus II, King of Bohemia and Hungary, and Maximilian's granddaughter Mary; and between her brother Archduke Ferdinand and Vladislaus' daughter Anna. The wedding was celebrated in grand style on 22 July 1515, and has been described by some historians as the First Congress of Vienna due to its significant implications for Europe's political landscape. All the children were still minors, so the wedding was formally completed in 1521. Vladislaus died on 13 March 1516, and Maximilian died on 12 January 1519, but his designs were ultimately successful: on Louis's death in 1526, Maximilian's grandson Ferdinand I, Holy Roman Emperor, became the King of Bohemia.The Habsburg dynasty achieved the position of a true world power by the time of Charles V, for the first and only time in their history the "World Emperor" ruling an "empire on which the sun never sets".The Habsburgs' policies against Protestantism led to an eradication of the former in throughout vast areas under their control.Division of the house: Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs.The Spanish and Austrian Habsburg Dominions in 1700, not showing their overseas empire, but showing the division between the Spanish and Austrian branch with their losses and gains.After the assignment, on 21 April 1521, of the Austrian lands to Ferdinand I by his brother Emperor Charles V (also King Charles I of Spain) (1516–1556), the dynasty split into the junior branch of the Austrian Habsburgs and the senior branch of the Spanish Habsburgs. The Austrian Habsburgs held the title of Holy Roman Emperor after Charles' death in 1558, as well as the Habsburg Hereditary Lands and the Kingdoms of Bohemia and Hungary.The senior Spanish branch ruled over Spain, its Italian possessions and its colonial empire, the Netherlands, and, for a time (1580–1640), Portugal. Hungary was partly under Habsburg rule from 1526. For 150 years most of the country was occupied by the Ottoman Turks but these territories were re-conquered in 1683–1699.In the secret Oñate treaty, the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs settled their mutual claims. The Spanish Habsburgs died out in 1700 (prompting the War of the Spanish Succession), as did the last male of the Austrian Habsburg line in 1740 (prompting the War of the Austrian Succession), and finally the last female of the Habsburg male line in 1780.Extinction of the Spanish Habsburgs.The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by the frequent use of consanguineous marriages. This resulted in a cumulatively deleterious effect on their gene pool. Marriages between first cousins, or between uncle and niece, were commonplace in the family. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests that inbreeding directly led to their extinction. The gene pool eventually became so small that the last of the Spanish line Charles II, who was severely disabled from birth, perhaps by genetic disorders, possessed a genome comparable to that of a child born to a brother and sister, as did his father, probably because of "remote inbreeding.

The Holy Roman Emperor Charles V and the Empress Isabella (1500-1558) inherited the thrones of the Netherlands, Spain, and the Hapsburg possessions but failed in his attempt to bring all of Europe under his imperial rule. Born in Ghent on Feb. 24, 1500, Charles V was the oldest son of Philip the Fair of Hapsburg, Lord of the Netherlands, and Joanna the Mad of Aragon and Castile. When Philip died in 1506, Charles was in line for the rich inheritance of the Netherlands as well as Hapsburg Austria and possibly the office of emperor. Spainthe product of the rather recent union of Aragon and Castile under the Catholic Kings—fell to him because of a series of deaths in the Spanish family, which made his mother, Joanna, the legal successor to the Spanish throne.Charles's maternal grandfather, Ferdinand of Aragon, who had long tried to block a Spanish-Hapsburg union, favored the succession of Charles's younger brother, Ferdinand, to the Spanish crown. But the grandfather died in 1516 before he was able to alter the succession. Charles, who in 1515 had already taken over the government of the Netherlands, became regent of Aragon and Castile for his mother, who was confined because of mental illness to the castle of Tordesillas.

Emperor Karl VI. of Austria.Charles VI, Holy Roman Emperor, Charles VI was the father of Empress Marie Theresa and the maternal grandfather of Marie Antoinette.Charles VI (1685 – 1740) succeeded his elder brother, Joseph I, as Holy Roman Emperor, King of Bohemia (as Charles II), King of Hungary and Croatia, Serbia and Archduke of Austria (as Charles III) in 1711. He unsuccessfully claimed the throne of Spain following the death of his relative, Charles II, in 1700. He married Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel, by whom he had his two children: Maria Theresa, the last Habsburg sovereign, and Maria Anna, Governess of the Austrian Netherlands.Four years before the birth of Maria Theresa, faced with his lack of male heirs, Charles provided for a male-line succession failure with the Pragmatic Sanction of 1713. The Emperor favoured his own daughters over those of his elder brother and predecessor, Joseph I, in the succession, ignoring the decree he had signed during the reign of his father, Leopold I. Charles sought the other European powers' approval. They exacted harsh terms: Britain demanded that Austria abolish its overseas trading company. In total, Great Britain, France, Saxony-Poland, the Dutch Republic, Spain,Venice,States of the Church, Prussia, Russia,Denmark,Savoy-Sardinia, Bavaria and the Diet of the Holy Roman Empirerecognised the sanction. France, Spain, Saxony-Poland, Bavaria and Prussia later reneged. Charles died in 1740, sparking the War of the Austrian Succession, which plagued his successor, Maria Theresa, for eight years.

The Monarchy was a composite state composed of territories within and outside the Holy Roman Empire, united only in the person of the monarch. The dynastic capital was Vienna, except from 1583 to 1611, when it was moved to Prague. From 1804 to 1867 the Habsburg Monarchy was formally unified as the Austrian Empire, and from 1867 to 1918 as the Austro-Hungarian Empire.Although the Duchy of Austria was just one of the duchies and lands that the Habsburgs eventually acquired in the eastern Alpine-Danubian region, the Habsburgs became known as the House of Austria after the Swiss peasantry ousted them from their original family seat in Habichtsburg in the Swiss canton of Aargau in 1386. The name Austria subsequently became an informal way to refer to all the lands possessed by the House of Austria, even though it also remained the proper, formal name of a specific region. Thus, through the legacy of common rule by the House of Austria, the lands that constitute the modern state of Austria indirectly adopted the name of one region of the country as the formal national name in the early twentieth century.Because the elector-princes of the Holy Roman Empire generally preferred a weak, dependent emperor, the powerful Habsburg Dynasty only occasionally held the imperial title in the 150 years after Rudolf's death in 1291. After the election of Frederick III in 1452 (r. 1452-93), however, the dynasty came to enjoy such a dominant position among the German nobility that only one non-Habsburg was elected emperor in the remaining 354- year history of the Holy Roman Empire.The Habsburgs' near monopoly of the imperial title, however, did not make the Habsburg Empire and the Holy Roman Empire synonymous. The Habsburg Empire was a supernational collection of territories united only through the accident of common rule by the Habsburgs, and many of the territories were not part of the Holy Roman Empire. In contrast, the Holy Roman Empire was a defined political and territorial entity that became identified with the German nation as the nation-state assumed greater importance in European politics.Although the succession of Holy Roman Emperors from the Habsburg line gave the House of Austria great prestige in Germany and Europe, the family's real power base was the lands in its possession, that is, the Habsburg Empire. This was because the Holy Roman Empire was a loosely organized feudal state in which the power of the emperor was counterbalanced by the rights and privileges of the empire's other princes, lords, and institutions, both secular and ecclesiastical.Habsburg power was significantly enhanced in 1453, when Emperor Frederick III confirmed a set of rights and privileges, dubiously claimed by the Habsburgs, that paralleled those of the elector-princes, in whose ranks the family did not yet sit. In addition, the lands the Habsburgs' possessed in 1453 were made inheritable through both the male and the female line. Because feudal holdings usually reverted to the emperor to dispose of as he wished when the holder of the fief died, the right of inheritable succession measurably strengthened the Habsburgs. The lands they held in 1453 became known collectively as the Hereditary Lands, and--with the exception of territories possessed by the archbishops of Salzburg and Brixen--encompassed most of modern Austria and portions of Germany, France, Italy, Croatia, and Slovenia.In the late Middle Ages, when the Habsburgs expanded their territories in the east, they usually ruled as dukes of the Duchy of Austria which covered only what is today Lower Austria  and the eastern part of Upper Austria . The Habsburg possessions also included the rest of what was then called Inner Austria , i.e. the Duchy of Styria, and then expanded west to include the Duchy of Carinthia and Carniola in 1335 and the Count of Tirol in 1363. Their original scattered possessions in the southern Alsace, south-western Germany and Vorarlberg were collectively known as Further Austria.The senior Habsburg dynast generally ruled Lower Austria from Vienna as archduke ("paramount duke") of the Duchy of Austria. The Styrian lands had already been ruled in personal union by the Babenberg dukes of Austria since 1192 and were finally seized with the Austrian lands by the Habsburg king Rudolph I of Germany upon his victory in the 1278 Battle on the Marchfeld. In 1335 Rudolph's grandson Duke Albert II of Austria also received the Carinthian duchy with the adjacent March of Carniola at the hands of Emperor Louis the Bavarian as Imperial fiefs.The Habsburg dukes gradually lost their homelands south of the Rhine and Lake Constance to the expanding Old Swiss Confederacy. Unless mentioned explicitly, the dukes of Austria also ruled over Further Austria until 1379, after that year, Further Austria was ruled by the Princely Count of Tyrol. Names in italics designate dukes who never actually ruled.When Albert's son Duke Rudolf IV of Austria died in 1365, his younger brothers Albert III and Leopold III quarrelled about his heritage and in the Treaty of Neuberg of 1379 finally split the Habsburg territories: The Albertinian line would rule in the Archduchy of Austria proper (then sometimes referred to as "Lower Austria" (Niederösterreich), but comprising modern Lower Austria and most of Upper Austria), while the Leopoldian line ruled in the Styrian, Carinthian and Carniolan territories, subsumed under the denotation of "Inner Austria". At that time their share also comprised Tyrol and the original Habsburg possessions in Swabia, called Further Austria; sometimes both were collectively referred to as "Upper Austria"  in that context, also not to be confused with the modern state of that name.After the death of Leopold's eldest son William in 1406, the Leopoldinian line was further split among his brothers into the Inner Austrian territory under Ernest the Iron and a Tyrolean/Further Austrian line under Frederick IV. In 1457 Ernest's son Duke Frederick V of Inner Austria also gained the Austrian archduchy after his Albertine cousin Ladislaus the Posthumous had died without issue. 1490 saw the reunification of all Habsburg lines, when Archduke Sigismund of Further Austria and Tyrol resigned in favour of Frederick's son Maximilian I. In 1512, the Habsburg territories were incorporated into the Imperial Austrian Circle.The Duchy of Austria comprising Upper Austria centred around Linz and Lower Austria centered around Vienna, Inner Austria comprising duchies of Styria, Carinthia and Carniola and the lands of the Austrian Littoral centered on Graz, and Further Austria comprising mostly the Sundgau territory with the town of Belfort in southern Alsace, the adjacent Breisgau region east of the Rhine, and usually the County of Tyrol. The part between Further Austria and the duchy of Austria was the Archbishopric of Salzburg.Archduke of Austria, was invented in the Privilegium Maius, a 14th-century forgery initiated by Duke Rudolf IV of Austria. Originally, it was meant to denote the "ruler"  of the duchy of Austria, usually from Vienna, in an effort to put the Habsburgs on a par with the Prince-electors, as Austria had been passed as hereditary prince-electors of the empire when the Golden Bull of 1356 assigned that title to the highest ranking Imperial princes. The Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV refused to recognise the title.The archducal title was only officially recognized in 1453 by Emperor Frederick III. Emperor Frederick III himself used just "Duke of Austria", never Archduke, until his death in 1493. The title was first granted to Frederick's younger brother, Albert VI of Austria (died 1463), who used it at least from 1458.In 1477, Frederick III also granted the title archduke to his first cousin, Sigismund of Austria, ruler of Further Austria. Frederick's son and heir, the future Emperor Maximilian I, started to use the title, but apparently only after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy (died 1482), as Archduke never appears in documents issued jointly by Maximilian and Mary as rulers in the Low Countries (where Maximilian is still titled "Duke of Austria"). The title appears first in documents issued under the joint rule of Maximilian and Philip (his under-age son) in the Low Countries.Archduke was initially borne by those dynasts who ruled a Habsburg territory, i.e., only by males and their consorts, appanages being commonly distributed to cadets. But these "junior" archdukes did not thereby become independent hereditary rulers, since all territories remained vested in the Austrian crown. Occasionally a territory might be combined with a separate gubernatorial mandate ruled by an archducal cadet.From the 16th century onward, archduke and its female form, archduchess, came to be used by all the members of the House of Habsburg (e.g., Queen Marie Antoinette of France was born Archduchess Maria Antonia of Austria.Rudolph II, son of Rudolph I, duke of Austria and Styria together with his brother 1282–1283, was dispossessed by his brother, who eventually would be murdered by one of Rudolph's sons.Albert I (Albrecht I), son of Rudolph I and brother of the above, duke from 1282–1308; was Holy Roman Emperor from 1298–1308. See also below.Rudolph III, oldest son of Albert I, designated duke of Austria and Styria 1298–1307:Frederick the Handsome (Friedrich der Schöne), brother of Rudolph III. Duke of Austria and Styria (with his brother Leopold I) from 1308–1330; officially co-regent of emperor Louis IV since 1325, but never ruled.Leopold I, brother of the above, duke of Austria and Styria from 1308–1326Albert II (Albrecht II), brother of the above, duke of Further Austria from 1326–1358, duke of Austria and Styria 1330–1358, duke of Carinthia after 1335Otto the Jolly , brother of the above, duke of Austria and Styria 1330–1339 (together with his brother), duke of Carinthia after 1335.Rudolph IV the Founder , oldest son of Albert II. Duke of Austria and Styria 1358–1365, Duke of Tirol after 1363.After the death of Rudolph IV, his brothers Albert III and Leopold III ruled the Habsburg possessions together from 1365 until 1379, when they split the territories in the Treaty of Neuberg, Albert keeping the Duchy of Austria and Leopold ruling over Styria, Carinthia, Carniola, the Windic March, Tirol, and Further AustriAlbert III (Albrecht III), duke of Austria until 1395, from 1386 (after the death of Leopold) until 1395 also ruled over the latter's possessions.Albert IV (Albrecht IV), duke of Austria 1395–1404, in conflict with Leopold IV.Albert V (Albrecht V), duke of Austria 1404–1439, Holy Roman Emperor from 1438–1439 as Albert II. See also below.Ladislaus Posthumus, son of the above, duke of Austria 1440–1457.Leopold III, duke of Styria, Carinthia, Tyrol, and Further Austria until 1386, when he was killed in the Battle of Sempach.William (Wilhelm), son of the above, 1386–1406 duke in Inner Austria (Carinthia, Styria)Leopold IV, son of Leopold III, 1391 regent of Further Austria, 1395–1402 duke of Tyrol, after 1404 also duke of Austria, 1406–1411 duke of Inner Austria.Ernest the Iron (der Eiserne), 1406–1424 duke of Inner Austria, until 1411 together and competing with his brother Leopold IV.Frederick V (Friedrich), son of Ernst, became emperor Frederick III in 1440. He was duke of Inner Austria from 1424 on. Guardian of Sigismund 1439–1446 and of Ladislaus Posthumus 1440–1452. See also below.Albert VI (Albrecht VI), brother of the above, 1446–1463 regent of Further Austria, duke of Austria 1458–1463.Ernestine line of Saxon princes, ancestor of George I of Great Britain-descended from sister of Frederick III; also Prince Frederick Charles of Hesse King of Finland 191.Frederick IV (Friedrich), brother of Ernst, 1402–1439 duke of Tyrol and Further Austria.Sigismund, also spelled Siegmund or Sigmund, 1439–1446 under the tutelage of the Frederick V above, then duke of Tyrol, and after the death of Albrecht VI in 1463 also duke of Further Austria.Sigismund had no children and adopted Maximilian I, son of duke Frederick V (emperor Frederick III). Under Maximilian, the possessions of the Habsburgs would be united again under one ruler, after he had re-conquered the Duchy of Austria after the death of Matthias Corvinus, who resided in Vienna and styled himself duke of Austria from 1485–1490.King of the Romans and Holy Roman Emperors prior to the reunion of the Habsburg possessions.Rudolph I, emperor 1273–1291 (never crowned) Emperor Rudolf I Albert I, emperor 1298–1308 (never crowned) Armoiries empereur Albert.Albert II, emperor 1438–1439 (never crowned) -ancestor of Empress Catherine II of Russia Armoiries empereur Albert II.svg.Frederick III, emperor 1440–1493 Armoiries empereur Frédéric III.svg.Kings of Hungary and Bohemia prior to the reunion of the Habsburg possessionsCrown of Saint Stephen.svg.Crown of St. Wenceslas.svgAlbert, king of Hungary and Bohemia (1437–1439) Armoiries Albert II de Habsbourg.svg.Ladislaus V Posthumus, king of Hungary (1444–1457) and Bohemia (1453–1457) Coa Hungary Country History Ladislaus V (1440 – 1457).sv.The title Archduke of Austria, the one most famously associated with the Habsburgs, was invented in the Privilegium Maius, a 14th-century forgery initiated by Duke Rudolf IV of Austria. Originally, it was meant to denote the ruler of the (thus 'Arch')duchy of Austria, in an effort to put that ruler on par with the Prince-electors, as Austria had been passed over in the Golden Bull of 1356, when the electorships had been assigned. Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV .refused to recognize the title. Ladislaus the Posthumous, Duke of Austria, who died in 1457, was never in his lifetime authorized to use it, and accordingly, not he nor anyone in his branch of the dynasty ever used the title.Duke Ernest the Iron and his descendants unilaterally assumed the title "archduke". This title was only officially recognized in 1453 by his son, Emperor Frederick III, when the Habsburgs had (permanently) gained control of the office of the Holy Roman Emperor. Emperor Frederick III himself used just Duke of Austria, never Archduke, until his death in 1493.Frederick's son and heir, the future Emperor Maximilian I, started to use the title, but apparently only after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy (died 1482) as the title never appears in documents of joint Maximilian and Mary rule in the Low Countries (where Maximilian is still titled Duke of Austria). The title appears first in documents of joint Maximilian and Philip (his under-age son) rule in the Low Countries. It only gained currency with Charles V and the descendants of his brother, the Emperor Ferdinand.Maximilian I, emperor 1508–1519 Coat of arms of Maximilan of Hapsburg as archduke of Austria.svg Coat of arms of Maximilan of Hapsburg as consort to Mary of Burgundy.svg Armoiries Maximilien Ier.svg Coat of arms of Maximilian of Austria as emperor.svgCharles V, emperor 1519–1556, his arms are explained in an article about them Arms of Charles II of Spain (1668-1700).svg Arms of Charles I of Spain, Charles V as Holy Roman Emperor-Or shield variant (1530-1556).svgTitular Dukes of Burgundy, Lords of the Netherlands.Cross of Burgundy-Gules and Link.svg.The reigning duke of Burgundy, Charles the Bold, was the chief political opponent of Maximilian's father Frederick III. Charles controlled not only Burgundy (both dukedom and county), but the wealthy and powerful Southern Netherlands, current Flanders, the real center of his power. Frederick was concerned about Burgundy's expansive tendencies on the western border of his Holy Roman Empire, and to forestall military conflict, he attempted to secure the marriage of Charles's only daughter, Mary of Burgundy, to his son Maximilian. After the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), he was successful. The wedding between Maximilian and Mary took place on the evening of 16 August 1477, after the death of Charles.[19] Mary and the Habsburgs lost the Duchy of Burgundy to France, but managed to defend and hold onto the rest what became the 17 provinces of the Habsburg Netherlands. After Mary's death in 1482, Maximilian acted as regent for his son.Philip the Handsome (1482–1506) Coat of arms of Philipp of Austria 1483-1485.svg Arms of Philip IV of Burgundy.svgCharles V (1506–1555) Arms of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor as Heir of Philip the Handsome.svg Arms of Philip IV of Burgundy.svg.Margaret of Austria, Duchess of Savoy, regent (1507–1515) and (1519–1530) Coat of arms of Margaret of Austria (princess of Spain).svg Coat of arms of Margaret of Austria (duchess of Savoy).svg Coat of arms of Margaret of Austria (countess of Burgundy).svg.Mary of Hungary, dowager queen of Hungary, sister of Charles V, governor of the Netherlands, 1531–1555 Coat of Arms of Mary of Austria as Queen of Hungary.svg Coat of Arms of Mary of Austria as Dowager Queen of Hungary.svg.Margaret of Parma, illegitimate daughter of Charles V, Duchess of Parma, and mother of Alexander Farnese, Duke of Parma, governor 1559–1567 Coat of Arms of Margareth of Parma Before her Marriage.svg.Don John of Austria, illegitimate son of Charles V, victor of Lepanto, governor of the Netherlands, 1576–1578 Coat of Arms of John of Austria (1545-1578).svg.Alexander Farnese, Duke of Parma, son of Margaret of Parma, governor of the Netherlands, 1578–1592 Armoiries Parme 1586.svg.The Netherlands were frequently governed directly by a regent or governor-general, who was a collateral member of the Habsburgs. By the Pragmatic Sanction of 1549 Charles V combined the Netherlands into one administrative unit, to be inherited by his son Philip II. Charles effectively united the Netherlands as one entity. The Habsburgs controlled the 17 Provinces of the Netherlands until the Dutch Revolt in the second half of the 16th century, when they lost the seven northern Protestant provinces. They held onto the southern Catholic part (roughly modern Belgium and Luxembourg) as the Spanish and Austrian Netherlands until they were conquered by French Revolutionary armies in 1795. The one exception to this was the period of (1601–1621), when shortly before Philip II died on 13 September 1598, he renounced his rights to the Netherlands in favor of his daughter Isabella and her fiancé, Archduke Albert of Austria, a younger son of Emperor Maximilian II. The territories reverted to Spain on the death of Albert in 1621, as the couple had no surviving offspring, and Isabella acted as regent-governor until her death in 1633:the Archdukes Albert and Isabella, 1601-1621 Coat of Arms of Archduke Albert of Austria as Governor-Monarch of the Low Countries.svg Coat of Arms of Infanta Isabella of Spain as Governor Monarch of the Low Countries.svg.King of England:Philip II of Spain (Jure uxoris King, with Mary I of England 1554–1558)Spanish Habsburgs: Kings of Spain, Kings of Portugal (1581–1640).

The Habsburg Kingdom(s) of Spain were more a personal union of possessions of the Habsburg king and dynast, who was King of Castile, Leon, Aragon, Valencia, sometime of Portugal, Naples and Sicily, Duke of Milan, and Lord of the Americas, as well as Duke of Brabant, Count of Flanders and Holland, Duke of Luxemburg . The dynast (head of the Spanish Habsburgs, i.e. the King, showed this wide range of claims in his arms. There are many more variants of these arms in the Habsburg Armory, Spanish Section as well as coat of arms of the King of Spain, coat of arms of Spain, coat of arms of the Prince of Asturias, and coats of arms of Spanish Monarchs in Italy. Philip I of Castile the Handsome  second son of Maximilian I, founded the Spanish Habsburgs in 1496 by marrying Joanna the Mad, daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella. Philip died in 1506, leaving the thrones of Castile and Aragon to be inherited and united into the throne of Spain by his son:Charles I 1516–1556, aka Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor; divided the House into Austrian and Spanish lines The meanings of his arms are analyzed here. Arms of Charles II of Spain (1668-1700).. Middle Arms of Charles I of Spain, Charles V as Holy Roman Emperor-Middle (1530-1556).svg.Philip II the Prudent  1556–1598, also Philip I of Portugal 1581–1598 and Philip I of England with his wife Mary I of England 1554–1558. The meanings of his arms are analyzed here. Arms of Philip II of Spain (1558-1580).svg. Royal Arms of Spain (1580-1668).svg.Philip III the Pious, also Philip II of Portugal 1598–1621, Charles II the Bewitched ( "El Hechizado" 1665–1700 Arms of Charles II of Spain (1668-1700).svg.The main junior line of the house ruled the Duchy of Austria, as well as the Kingdom of Bohemia and the Kingdom of Hungary. The dynasty however was split up again in 1564 among the children of deceased Emperor Ferdinand I of Habsburg. The Inner Austrian line founded by Archduke Charles II prevailed again, when his son and successor as regent of Inner Austria (i.e. the Duchy of Styria, the Duchy of Carniola with March of Istria, the Duchy of Carinthia, the Princely County of Gorizia and Gradisca, and the Imperial City of Trieste, ruled from Graz) Ferdinand II in 1619 became Archduke of Austria and Holy Roman Emperor as well as King of Bohemia and Hungary in 1620. The Further Austrian/Tyrolean line of Ferdinand's brother Archduke Leopold V survived until the death of his son Sigismund Francis in 1665, whereafter their territories ultimately returned to common control with the other Austrian Habsburg lands. Inner Austrian stadtholders went on to rule until the days of Empress Maria Theresa in the 18th century.Ferdinand I, emperor 1556–1564, Armoiries empereur Ferdinand Ier.svg Maximilian II, emperor 1564–1576 ,Armoiries empereur Ferdinand Ier.svg,Rudolf II, emperor 1576–1612 Armoiries empereur Rodolphe II.svg,Matthias, emperor 1612–1619 Armoiries empereur Rodolphe II.svg,Ferdinand II, emperor 1619–1637 Armoiries empereur Ferdinand III.svg,Ferdinand III, emperor 1637–1657 Armoiries empereur Charles IV.svg,Leopold I, emperor 1658–1705 Armoiries empereur Rodolphe II.svg
Josef I, emperor 1705–1711 Armoiries empereur Ferdinand Ier.svg,Charles VI, emperor,1711–1740 Arms of Charles VI, Holy Roman Emperor-Or shield variant.svg
Maria Theresa of Austria, Habsburg heiress and wife of emperor Francis I Stephen, reigned as Archduchess of Austria and Queen of Hungary and Bohemia 1740–1780.

Maria Theresa Walburga Amalia Christina(1717-1780) was the only female ruler of the Habsburg dominions and the last of the House of Habsburg. She was the sovereign of Austria, Hungary, Croatia, Bohemia, Transylvania, Mantua, Milan, Lodomeria and Galicia, the Austrian Netherlands and Parma. By marriage, she was Duchess of Lorraine, Grand Duchess of Tuscany and Holy Roman Empress.She started her 40-year reign when her father, Emperor Charles VI, died in October 1740. Charles VI paved the way for her accession with the Pragmatic Sanction of 1713 and spent his entire reign securing it.[3] Upon the death of her father, Saxony, Prussia, Bavaria, and France all repudiated the sanction they had recognised during his lifetime. Frederick II of Prussia (who became Maria Theresa's greatest rival for most of her reign) promptly invaded and took the affluent Habsburg province of Silesia in the seven-year conflict known as the War of the Austrian Succession. Over the course of the war, despite the loss of Silesia and a few minor territories in Italy, Maria Theresa successfully defended her rule over most of the Habsburg empire. Maria Theresa later unsuccessfully tried to reconquer Silesia during the Seven Years' War.

Francis I, Stephan von Lothringen (1708-1765), emperor of Austria, though his wife effectively executed the real powers of those positions. Together they where the founders of the Habsburg-Lorraine dynasty. They had 16 children, the youngest being Marie-Antoinette, the ill-fated queen of France.A Habsburg family of great fame was that of Empress Maria Theresa and Emperor Francis I of the Holy Roman Empire. Maria Theresa von Habsburg was the eldest daughter of emperor Charles VI of the Holy Roman Emire.Altough never heard of in these days, Maria Theresa succeeded her father since he abolished male-only succession. Having no male issue Charles VI choose his eldest daughter as his successor over his brother. Maria Theresia was married to Francis Stephen, son of the Duke of Lorraine. They founded the new dynasty of Habsburg-Lorraine. Maria Theresa was the only ruling female of the Habsburg dynasty, which ruled great parts of Europe during 650 years.The marriage of Maria Theresa and Fransic I was also arranged by Charles VI, and for that reason Francis grew up in Vienna together with Maria Theresa. Unlike many arranged marriages their’s was one of love and affection.

Francis I/Franz I. Stephan von Lothringen (1708-1765) was born 8 December 1708 in Nancy, France to Leopold von Lothringen (1679-1729) and Élisabeth Charlotte of Orléans (1676-1744) and died 18 August 1765 in Innsbruck, Austria of unspecified causes. He married Maria Theresia von Habsburg (1717-1780) 12 February 1736 in Vienna, Austria. Notable ancestors include Charlemagne (747-814), Alfred the Great (849-899), Henry II of England (1133-1189), William I of England (1027-1087), Hugh Capet (c940-996), Rurik (c832-879), Willem van Oranje (1533-1584), Robert I of Scotland (1274-1329). Ancestors are from Austria, France, Denmark, Belgium, Germany, the United Kingdom, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, Lithuania, Russia, Ukraine, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Belarus, England, Poland, Bohemia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Czechoslovakia, Turkey, Israel, Ireland, Scotland, the Byzantine Empire.

Francis II, Holy Roman Emperor,Francis II ( 1768 – 1835) was the last Holy Roman Emperor, ruling from 1792 until 6 August 1806, when he dissolved the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation after the decisive defeat at the hands of the First French Empire led by Napoleon at the Battle of Austerlitz. In 1804, he had founded the Austrian Empire and became Francis I, the first Emperor of Austria, ruling from 1804 to 1835, so later he was named the one and only Doppelkaiser (double emperor) in history.For the two years between 1804 and 1806, Francis used the title and style by the Grace of God elected Roman Emperor, ever Augustus, hereditary Emperor of Austria and he was called the Emperor of both the Holy Roman Empire and Austria. He was also Apostolic King of Hungary and Bohemia as Francis I. He also served as the first president of the German Confederation following its establishment in 1815.

Catholic Habsburgs, the Austrian dynasty which itself was assembling a central-European empire that, after 1526, included the kingdoms of Hungary and Bohemia. Ferdinand I (r. 1556–64) and Maximilian II (r. 1564–76) were rulers who governed moderately and wisely the Holy Roman Empire. Ferdinand, through his marriage to the heiress of Hungary and Bohemia, added these lands to the family. Rudolf I (r. 1575–1612) was less capable and was deposed, and his successor, Mathias I (r. 1612–19), was not effective.A member of a cognate line, Ferdinand II (r. 1619–37), faced with rebellion by Protestants in both Bohemia and Austria, put these revolts down and came close to enforcing a revocation of the Treaty of Augsburg. For a while, it seemed that he would reach his goal in the Thirty Years’ War (1618–48).Nonetheless, Ferdinand II and Ferdinand III (r. 1637–57) devoted their energies to Austrian expansion. Leopold I (r. 1657–1705) was the most dogged opponent of Louis XIV and the Turks. He was succeeded by Joseph I (r. 1705–11), who in turn was succeeded by his brother, Charles VI, who was the Austrian candidate in the War of the Spanish Succession.The death of Charles VI in 1740 led to the War of the Austrian Succession, as he left no male descendants. However, his capable daughter, Maria Theresa (1740–80), held the dominions together with the exception of Silesia. She was considered an enlightened despot, as she instituted civil reforms. Her son, Joseph II, tried to institute reforms too soon. His successors Leopold II (r. 1790–92) and Francis II (r. 1792–1835) were more conservative.The 19th and early 20th centuries saw new challenges as rising nationalism threatened to break up the multinational empire of the Habsburgs. The last ruler of the dynasty was Franz Josef, who ruled from 1848 to 1916. However, Austria lost territories to Italy and Germany despite gaining land in the Balkans.The end came in World War I when the Emperor Charles was forced to abdicate in 1918–19. Today, of the Habsburg descendants, the only monarchs are the ruling family of the tiny municipality of Liechtenstein sandwiched between Austria and Switzerland.

Francis II, Holy Roman Emperor,Francis II ( 1768 – 1835) was the last Holy Roman Emperor, ruling from 1792 until 6 August 1806, when he dissolved the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation after the decisive defeat at the hands of the First French Empire led by Napoleon at the Battle of Austerlitz. In 1804, he had founded the Austrian Empire and became Francis I, the first Emperor of Austria, ruling from 1804 to 1835, so later he was named the one and only Doppelkaiser (double emperor) in history.[1] For the two years between 1804 and 1806, Francis used the title and style by the Grace of God elected Roman Emperor, ever Augustus, hereditary Emperor of Austria and he was called the Emperor of both the Holy Roman Empire and Austria. He was also Apostolic King of Hungary and Bohemia as Francis I. He also served as the first president of the German Confederation following its establishment in 1815.

Emperor Franz married four times. These marriages were entered into for dynastic reasons, and some of his wives were very close relatives. Nonetheless, they developed into partnerships that were characterised by mutual trust and sympathy.His first wife, Elisabeth Wilhelmine of Württemberg (1767–1790), was chosen for him by his uncle, Joseph II. A union with the House of Württemberg was a politically opportune choice, as Elisabeth’s elder sister Sophie Dorothea was married to the heir to the Russian throne, Paul.He thus married again only six months after his first wife’s death. His second bride was Maria Teresa of Bourbon-Naples (1772–1807). Even by Habsburg standards, the couple were extremely closely related. Maria Teresa was the daughter of King Ferdinand I of Naples and Sicily and Archduchess Maria Karoline, daughter of Empress Maria Theresa. Franz was the son of Maria Luisa of Bourbon-Naples, a sister of his bride’s mother. Franz and Maria Teresa were thus first cousins on both sides. Despite this, the union was the only one of Franz’s four marriages to produce offspring, eventually resulting in a grand total of twelve children. His third wife was Maria Ludovika Beatrice of Modena (1787–1816), to whom he was also related. She was the youngest daughter of his uncle, Archduke Ferdinand, and the heiress to the northern Italian duchy of Modena, Maria Beatrice d’Este. Her family was driven out of their duchy by Napoleon’s troops, finding refuge in Austria, where Maria Ludovika grew up. In 1808 Luigia, as she was known in the family, was married to her cousin, Emperor Franz, who was almost twenty years her senior. The emperor was reportedly delighted by his young bride’s beauty and elegance.The emperor’s fourth and last wife was Karoline Auguste (1792–1873) from the Wittelsbach dynasty, a daughter of King Maximilian I of Bavaria. Her first marriage to Wilhelm of Württemberg had been annulled in 1815 with papal consent. The year afterwards, the 24-year-old princess married the thrice-widowed Emperor Franz, who was twice her age. When he saw his blooming young bride, Franz is alleged to have exclaimed ‘At least I won’t end up with a corpse again after a few years!’ Karolina Auguste was to outlive her husband by 38 year.

Emperor Franz II/I entering Vienna on the 16th June 1814.The Triumphal Entry of Emperor Francis I after the Peace of Paris on June 16th 1814.

Francis II, Holy Roman Emperor,Francis II ( 1768 – 1835)was born in 1768, Joseph Charles Francis of Habsburg assumed the title Holy Roman Emperor Francis II in 1792, having inherited the position from his father, Leopold II (r. 1790-92). His reign coincided with a period of grave political turmoil in Europe. In fact, he acceded to the throne on July 14, 1792, the third anniversary of storming of the Bastille. On April 20, 1792, just months earlier, revolutionary France had declared war on Austria and the Holy Roman Empire – not, however, without provocation.In 1804, Holy Roman Emperor Francis II also became Emperor Francis I of Austria. He held the two titles simultaneously until Napoleon declared the Holy Roman Empire dissolved in 1806. By the time Francis acceded to the Austrian throne, the Habsburgs’ disastrous conflicts with Napoleon (r. 1804-1814/15) had already reduced their power to a fraction of what it once was. As a result, Francis sought to secure his position by proclaiming the Austrian ancestral domains the Austrian Empire, independent of the Holy Roman Empire. In 1805, Austria suffered a crushing defeat at the hands of the French in the Battle of Austerlitz. In 1806, Francis found himself under even greater pressure from Napoleon, and the situation only became worse when sixteen southern and southwestern German estates withdrew from the Empire to found the Confederation of the Rhine on July 12, 1806. On August 6, 1806, Francis abdicated the imperial throne. He retained the title of Austrian Emperor and went on in this capacity to reassert Habsburg power after Napoleon’s defeat.The first two decades of his reign were marked by his struggle against the French Revolution and against Napoleon. As nephew of Marie-Antoinette, he had familial reasons for being distrustful of the French Revolution. And his ethnically multifarious lands made him fear calls for liberty and equality. His initial attempts to fight revolutionary France (ending at Valmy in September 1792) were unsuccessful. After taking of brunt of Napoleon's military genius during the First Italian campaign, he was forced to the negotiating table at Campo Formio (Venetian territory). Austrian territories on the Left Bank of the Rhine were handed to France in return for which Austria was allowed to keep its lands around Venice and in Dalmatia. Beaten again after the Second Italian campaign at Marengo (June 1800), Venice finally fell and Austrian influence in northern Italy was for the moment suspended as per the Peace of Lunéville. The Austrian Grand Duchy of Tuscany was given to France, the Batavian (once the Austrian Netherlands), Ligurian (once an imperial fief), Helvetic and Italian (once an imperial fief) republics were to be safeguarded from Austrian meddling and given independent status. With the loss of the left bank of the Rhine and the rise of the Napoleonic influence in German lands (as evinced by the German princes who came to welcome Napoleon on his imperial visit to Aachen in the autumn of 1804), Francis took the step of resigning as emperor of the Holy Roman Emperor (thus effectively killing it) and styling himself Francis I of Austria. Goaded by Napoleon's coronation as king of Italy, his wife Maria-Theresa's (and her party's) implacable hatred of the French Revolution and encouraged by Britain, Francis joined the Third Coalition in the late summer of 1805. But this mobilisation took place before the army was effectively ready. The defeats at Ulm and then Austerlitz lead to the humiliating treaty of Pressburg, and the creation of the Confederation of the Rhine put the final touches to the death of the empire and giving a Napoleonic imprint to German lands. In 1809, Francis attacked France again, hoping to take advantage of the conflict embroiling Napoleon in Spain. He was again defeated, and this time was forced to ally himself with Napoleon, ceding territory to the Empire, joining the Continental System, and wedding his daught Marie-Louise to the Emperor. Francis essentially became a vassal of the Emperor of France. The Napoleonic wars drastically weakened Austria and reduced its prestige, which would lead to Prussia's acquiring the edge in the contest for dominance of Germany. In 1813, for the fourth and final time, Austria turned against France and joined Britain, Russia, and Prussia in their war against Napoleon. Austria played a major role in the final defeat of France—in recognition of this, Francis, represented by Clemens von Metternich, presided over the Congress of Vienna, helping to form the Concert of Europe and the Holy Alliance, ushering in an era of conservatism and reactionism in Europe. The German Confederation, a loose association of Central European states was created by the Congress of Vienna in 1815 to organize the surviving states of the Holy Roman Empire. The federal diet met at Frankfurt under Austrian presidency (in fact the Habsburg Emperor was represented by an Austrian 'presidential envoy'). Within Austria, at the end of the Napoleonic wars Francis decided not to reinstate the Ancien Régime system but legitimised his rule by erecting a social conservative and finally reactionary system, as drafted by Metternich and established by the Holy Alliance founded in 1818. He followed the policies of his uncle Joseph II (known as Josephism) with its emphasis upon the role of the police, the censor and the repression of democratic tendencies.The Habsburg Monarchy and Bohemia, 1526–1848 This chapter presents an essay on the Habsburg Monarchy's administration of the kingdom of Bohemia during the period from 1526 to 1848. It suggests that during this period Bohemia became a tractable possession of Habsburg rulers partly because of the failure of the famous revolt of 1618–20. Bohemia was the material powerhouse of the Monarchy supplying personnel much its political, intellectual, and administrative leadership. After 1800, this relationship started to change but it was only in the revolution of 1848 that Bohemia's full debility was revealed..The Kingdom of Bohemia, was a medieval and early modern monarchy in Central Europe, the predecessor of the modern Czech Republic. It was an Imperial State in the Holy Roman Empire, and the Bohemian king was a prince-elector of the empire. The kings of Bohemia, besides Bohemia, ruled also the Lands of the Bohemian Crown, which at various times included Moravia, Silesia, Lusatia and parts of Saxony, Brandenburg and Bavaria.The kingdom was established by the Přemyslid dynasty in the 12th century from Duchy of Bohemia, later ruled by the House of Luxembourg, the Jagiellonian dynasty, and since 1526 by the House of Habsburg and its successor house Habsburg-Lorraine. Numerous kings of Bohemia were also elected Holy Roman Emperors and the capital Prague was the imperial seat in the late 14th century, and at the end of the 16th and beginning of the 17th centuries.After the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire in 1806, the territory became part of the Habsburg Austrian Empire, and subsequently the Austro-Hungarian Empire from 1867. Bohemia retained its name and formal status as a separate Kingdom of Bohemia until 1918, known as a crown land within the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and its capital Prague was one of the empire's leading cities. The Czech language (called the Bohemian language in English usage until the 19th century) was the main language of the Diet and the nobility until 1627 (after the Bohemian Revolt was suppressed). German was then formally made equal with Czech and eventually prevailed as the language of the Diet until the Czech national revival in the 19th century. German was also widely used as the language of administration in many towns after Germans immigrated and populated some areas of the country in the 13th century. The royal court used the Czech, Latin, and German languages, depending on the ruler and period.Following the defeat of the Central Powers in World War I, both the Kingdom and Empire were dissolved. Bohemia became the core part of the newly formed Czechoslovak Republic.

Portrait of Emperor Joseph II (right) and his younger brother Grand Duke Leopold of Tuscany (left), who would later become Holy Roman Emperor as Leopold II.

Leopold II (born Peter Leopold Joseph) (May 5, 1747 – March 1, 1792) was the penultimate Holy Roman Emperor from 1790 to 1792 and Grand-duke of Tuscany (Leopold I - Pietro Leopoldo d'Asburgo-Lorena - Granduca di Toscana). He was the son of the Empress Maria Theresa and her husband, Francis Stephen of Lorraine. Leopold was one of the "enlightened monarchs".Leopold was born in Vienna, a third son, and was at first educated for the priesthood, but the theological studies to which he was forced to apply himself are believed to have influenced his mind in a way unfavourable to the Church. On the death of his elder brother Charles in 1761, it was decided that he should succeed to his father's Grand Duchy of Tuscany, which was promoted into a "secundogeniture" or apanage for a second son. This settlement was the condition of his marriage on August 5, 1764 with Maria Louisa, daughter of Charles III of Spain and Maria Amalia of Saxony. On the death of his father Francis I (August 13, 1765), he succeeded to the grand duchy.

Ambitious and beautiful Charlotte of Belgium (1840-1927) married Maximilian of Austria (1832-1867) and became Empress of Mexico. After her return to Europe, friends commented on her strange behaviour. She laughed, wept, held monologues and talked incoherently. In her hotel room Charlotte had living chicken tied to the table legs. Strangely though, she never damaged possessions that reminded her of Maximilian..


Many people are unaware that in the 1860s Mexico was an empire and was ruled by a man named Emperor Maximilian the First. Who was this man and how did he get control of Mexico? More importantly to this podcast, what became of his imperial treasure?Everyone likes a good treasure story but before talking about the treasure we will set the stage and give context. Emperor Maximilian was born an Austrian Archduke, to the House of Habsburg, second son of Archduke Franz Karl andwas the brother of the long-ruling Emperor Franz Josef. Maximilian was descended from Ferdinand and Isabella, and many of the other Spanish monarchs who ruled over Mexico as New Spain. In 1857 Maximilian married Princess Charlotte of Belgium the daughter of the King of the Belgians, Leopold I. She was also the first cousin of Queen Victoria, as they were both granddaughters of Francis Frederick, the Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld. Yes, that’s a lot of genealogy to consider and if nothing else, it shows how well connected Maximilian and his wife were to the various European noble houses.maxcoin.Mexico in the late 1850s was very tumultuous. After the Mexican War Santa Ana ruled as dictator and was later deposed by the republican forces led by Benito Juarez who was the first indigenous ruler of modern Mexico. Under the constitution of 1857 Juarez was formally elected president in 1861. Three European powers – France, Britain and Spain – had many financial interests in Mexico at the time and were upset about unpaid debts and overall political instability in that country. In 1861, the European trio sent a force to seize the customs house at Veracruz. Napoleon III of France spearheaded the effort and thought that having a permanent French military presence on Mexican soil would be a good way of securing French interests in Mexico. Napoleon’s first force to take over Mexico was defeated by the Mexicans at Puebla on May 5th 1862, now celebrated as Cinco de Mayo. The French didn’t stop there, though, and sent more troops, advancing on the capital, causing the republican government to collapse and Juarez to flee to the north, setting up his government in exile in Chihuahua. The power vacuum from the French invasion set the stage for the empire. A group from the Mexican aristocracy with the backing of Napoleon III of France approached Maximilian to offer him the Mexican crown. At first he said no, but when he had heard of a vote taken in Mexico that confirmed the proclamation of Empire, Maximilian and his wife Carlota renounced their European titles and in the spring of 1864 they headed for Mexico.While not popular with most of the native-born Mexicans, the empire was supported by the elites who always looked to Europe and by Napoleon III who still maintained his army in Mexico to support Maximilian. The new emperor sought to recreate the imperial splendor of the court at Vienna and did so on the Aztec “Hill of the Grasshopper”  or Chapultepec – on the outskirts of Mexico City. Today you can see the imperial coaches, the fine furniture and other royal accoutrements in the museum at Chapultepec Castle in modern-day Mexico City. Maximilian’s rule was to be brief. An American blockade of the Mexican Gulf ports in 1866 initiated by Andrew Johnson was an attempt to drive the French out of Mexico. Napoleon III capitulated to the Americans and left Maximilian in Mexico to fend for himself. As the emperor had very little support among the people outside the small elite ruling class he must have known that without French military support, his days were numbered. After the French withdrawal Empress Carlota went to Europe to seek assistance for her husband’s regime among the various crowned heads of Europe and even from Pope Pius IX. She found no one to support her. As a result, exhausted and resigned to her fate, Carlota never returned to Mexico and suffered a mental breakdown. She, too, must have known the ultimate fate to befall her husband, and on June 19, 1867 Maximilian was shot by firing squad. Queen Victoria of England, one of the first people in Europe to hear of the emperor’s execution wrote in her diary, “The shocking news is true. Poor, dear cousin Charlotte, bereft of reason, and her husband killed. What a shocking end to their luckless undertaking, which I did all I could to prevent.”arms Maximilian arrived in Mexico with a small personal fortune and amassed more wealth during his tenure as emperor. In the final days of the empire, according to legend, and like many other rulers of Mexico who would follow him, Emperor Maximilian made arrangements to get his vast wealth out of the country. He knew that the ports were in rebel hands and the countryside was rife with banditry, so he thought it too risky to take his wealth out of the country overland and by sea by normal routes. Instead, he chose 4 Austrian officers and about a dozen Mexican loyalists to take the loot up north and through Texas to the port of Galveston. They loaded up 15 ox-pulled wagons full of $10 million of gold, silver and jewels and took a zig-zagged course while heading north to avoid pursuit. When the treasure train crossed the Rio Grande into Texas they camped at Presidio del Norte, presumably safe on the American side of the border. While in camp the group met 6 former Confederate soldiers from Missouri who were heading to Mexico rather than submit to Yankee rule. The Austrian captains asked if these men would postpone their trip to Mexico and help guide them across Texas to Galveston. They never told the Confederates what was in their cargo, and the Confederates agreed. Back then, Texas was a place still fraught with Comanche raids, banditry and a whole host of other hazards. Near the border of modern-day Upton and Crane counties, south of Odessa, where Route 385 is today, the Confederates found out the truth about what they had been escorting. They overpowered the Austrians and the Mexican loyalists, killing them, and taking the treasure for themselves. The story doesn’t end there. The 6 Confederates took some of the treasure with them, but buried the rest and set fire to the wagons over the spot where they buried the treasure. Their plan was to go back to Missouri, regroup, and return to get the rest of what they had buried. Along the way back to Missouri, though, one of them became really ill and had to be left behind at a place called Fort Concho. After a few days, although not fully recovered from his illness but feeling he might be cut out of the action, this man left the fort to try to catch up with his compatriots. A day into his journey he found them, all dead, the victim of a Comanche attack. So, this man who was still very ill was the only one left who knew the location of Maximilian’s imperial treasure. He kept going and on the way back to Missouri and too sick to travel farther, this man stopped in Denton, Texas and went to a doctor there to help cure him. The doctor told the Confederate that he didn’t have much time to live. And so the story goes, bedridden and knowing he would never recover the treasure for himself, the Confederate drew a crude map for the doctor and told him the story of Maximilian’s treasure. After the man’s death the doctor took a group of people to the border of Crane and Upton counties to hunt for the treasure, but after weeks of trying they never found it.Charlotte of Belgium, born on June 7, 1840, was only 10 years old, when her mother died, and it marked the end of her childhood. She was a charming, attractive and beautiful girl with her black hair, dark-brown eyes and slender figure. She was also intelligent, serious, dutiful and energetic and her behaviour was always dignified. At the age of 13, she already read Plutarch. In 1853 her brother Leopold (1835-1909) married the Habsburg Princess Marie Henriëtte (1836-1902), and Charlotte took an immediate dislike to her boyish sister-in-law, who preferred horses to books. In the summer of 1856 the 24-year-old Habsburg Archduke Maximilian, a brother of the Austrian Emperor Francis Joseph, visited Brussels. He was charming, handsome, slender, witty, gay and lively. Charlotte fell hopelessly in love with him. Maximilian asked Leopold I for the hand of his daughter and, although Leopold I preferred Pedro V of Portugal1 as a son-in-law, he allowed 16-year-old Charlotte to make her own choice. On his second visit to Brussels, Maximilian talked with Charlotte about his liberal, idealistic and Byronic ideas. He showed her the drawings for the villa Miramar, being built in medieval style near Triëst, and fascinated her with the stories of his travels to exotic places.The negotiations about the dowry dragged on for some time, but on July 27th of 1857 the then 17-year-old Charlotte married Maximilian. Afterwards they travelled via Vienna to Italy, because Maximilian had been appointed Viceroy of Lombardy and Venice. They were coolly received in Milan, but Charlotte was enchanted when she saw Venice and she wrote enthusiastic letters to Brussels. By then she had already found out that her fairy-tale Prince had no intention of changing his habits now that he was married. Often he left for Vienna for "diplomatic negotiations": wild parties and visits to brothels. In 1859 the Italian Freedom War broke out and Maximilian and Charlotte were forced to flee. Later that year Maximilian left for Brazil and rumours of his excesses in Rio preceded his return. Still, Charlotte proudly tried to keep up the pretence of a happy marriage until Maximilian infected her with a venereal disease. From then on she refused any intercourse and they slept in different bedrooms. Even then they managed to appear as a doting couple to the outside world. Residing in the villa Miramar, Charlotte read books, wrote, painted, swam and sailed, but she was bored and longed to be useful.In 1863, Napoleon III of France offered the Crown of Mexico to Maximilian. He hesitated. Charlotte, however, longed for a vocation and pushed him to accept the proposal. A group of wealthy, conservative Mexicans convinced them that the people of Mexico wanted Maximilian as their Emperor. After Napoleon III had promised that he would "never let the new Empire down", Maximilian signed the agreement. Hereupon Charlotte's French grandmother, Marie Amélie (1782-1866), shrieked: "They will be killed! They will be killed!". In contrast, all Charlotte's Coburg relatives seemed to have been blinded by the glitter of the Imperial Crown. When the Austrian Emperor Francis Joseph declared that Maximilian had to give up his rights to the Austrian throne on accepting the Mexican Crown, Maximilian hesitated again. Charlotte tried to negotiate with Francis Joseph, but he did not give in. So Charlotte convinced Maximilian to renounce his rights to the Austrian throne. Then she changed her name to 'Carlota' and started organising their departure.They had left Austrian soil on April 14, 1864 and arrived in Mexico on May 24, where they were received with little enthusiasm. In Mexico City the ramshackle Palacio National resembled barracks, so they moved to the filthy and neglected castle of Chapultepec. The first night the lice kept Charlotte awake. Mexico was nearly bankrupt and their position was precarious. The Mexican conservatives supported Maximilian, who had liberal ideas, while the liberals preferred the elected president, Benito Juárez (1806-1872), whose followers were conducting a guerrilla war against the French troops. When Maximilian decreed a guarantee on the freedom of religion, he antagonised the papal nuncio, too. As a result the pope withdrew his support in the spring of 1865. That year the American Civil War ended. The United States opposed the French troops in Mexico by supporting Juárez. To make things worse, Maximilian could not get along with the French supreme commander in Mexico. He travelled the country desperately trying to win over the Mexican people. Charlotte ruled in his absence and even when he was present, she often drew up official documents for him. Despite their professional co-operation, the couple continued to sleep in separate bedrooms. Maximilian often shared his with other women. One of them was the 17-year-old Concepción Sedano y Leguizano, who gave birth to a son. Since Maximilian did not have any prospect of begetting a legitimate heir, he decided to adopt a grandson of the former Mexican Emperor Agustin de Itúrbide (1783-1824). The boy's mother soon regretted the arrangement and started proclaiming loudly throughout France that Maximilian "had stolen her son from her".

On 19th June, 1867, the Austrian Archduke Ferdinand Maximilian, the emperor of Mexico, was executed on a hill outside Querétaro. His death was ordered by Benito Juarez, the president of the Mexican Republic.Maximilian’s death was a key event in a turbulent period of Mexican history that witnessed dramatic political upheavals, civil war, and attempts by France to exert its imperial influence over the country.

Charlotte of Belgium Early 1866, Napoleon III refused to give Maximilian any further financial support, despite his earlier promise. As a result of American pressure and his fear of Prussian aggression, Napoleon also announced the withdrawal of his troops from Mexico. Earlier Charlotte had received the news of her father's death and now she became nervous and depressed. When Maximilian contemplated his abdication however, Charlotte refused to give up. Despite the raining season, she decided to travel to Europe to reason with Napoleon III. She arrived in France on August 8, 1866 and received a telegram from Napoleon III informing her of his "illness". Charlotte nevertheless travelled to Paris and moved into the Grand Hôtel. The next day the Empress Eugénie, Napoleon's Spanish wife, visited her and through Eugénie's mediation, Charlotte was later received by Napoleon III. She described her plan for saving the Mexican Empire, but Napoleon and his councillors were immovable. During their second meeting, Charlotte became terribly upset and began crying hysterically. In their third and final conversation Napoleon told her the withdrawal of the French troops was final.In her letter to Maximilian, Charlotte wrote that Napoleon III represented "the evil on earth" and that he was "possessed by the devil". Friends commented on her strange behaviour. While travelling from Paris to Triëst, she told her lady-in-waiting that she had identified a farmer in the field as an assassin. She ordered the coachman to increase speed and covered her face with a handkerchief for the remainder of the ride. Back at the villa Miramar a courier arrived from Mexico with bad news and a request from Maximilian to ask the pope for help. Charlotte left for Rome and had two meetings with the pope. One morning, she burst into the pope's apartments, kneeled before him screaming her staff tried to poison her: "All food they give me contains poison and I am starving". Then she stuck her finger into the pope's cup of chocolate milk and licked it. She insisted on spending the night in the Vatican and the astonished pope had a bed prepared in the library. Officially, it was the only time ever for a woman to have stayed a night in the Vatican. The next day, the mother superior of a nearby convent persuaded Charlotte to visit an orphanage. With her handkerchief over her face Charlotte travelled in her coach to the convent, where she delivered a charming speech. Afterwards, while touring the grounds, she snatched a piece of meat from a hot pan in the kitchen. She burned her hand, fainted from the pain and was hurried off to her hotel. In her room Charlotte had living chicken tied to the table legs. Her servants had to slaughter and prepare them in her presence. When she was thirsty, she took the pope's glass and filled it at a public fountain. Her relatives were informed of her condition and soon her brother Philip arrived and escorted her to Triëst.From then on Charlotte was confined to Miramar by Maximilian's relatives and no one was allowed to visit her. As a result of the quiet and the good food, her physical health improved. She appeared beautiful as ever, but her behaviour remained strange. She was not invited for the marriage of her brother Philip in May. Charlotte occupied herself with reading books and writing letters. As a result of her long seclusion at Miramar, rumours started that she had been pregnant when she left Mexico, and had given birth at Miramar early 1867. Some even tried to identify the child as Maxime Weygand, although other rumours said that this man was a son of Charlotte's brother Leopold II. It seems highly unlikely however that the proud, dutiful and unapproachable Empress Charlotte would have taken a lover. Moreover, the diaries of the doctor who served at Miramar show that Charlotte never missed a period.Maximilian of Habsburg] Early 1867, the French troops were withdrawn from Mexico and Maximilian cabled his family in Vienna that he would return home soon. His family underestimated the seriousness of the situation in Mexico and his mother, Sophie of Bavaria2, wrote firmly: "I must still wish that you hold out in Mexico as long as you can with honour do so." So when the supporters of Juárez advanced on Mexico City, Maximilian retreated to Querétaro. With only a small army of supporters, he met Juárez in battle. He was quickly defeated, captured and sentenced to death. Many distinguished European liberals, like Victor Hugo and Giuseppe Garibaldi, took pity on the well-meaning but naive Emperor and petitioned Juárez to spare his life. On the morning of June 19, 1867 however, Maximilian was led out on the hill near Querétaro. He presented each man on the firing squad with a gold piece, asking them to aim carefully at his heart. Nevertheless, the first salvo did not kill him and one of the bullets pierced his face. The second salvo was deadly.Marie Henriëtte, the sister-in-law Charlotte had always loathed, travelled to Miramar in the summer of 1867 to escort Charlotte to Belgium. In the Palace of Laken the ex-Empress lived happily amongst her relatives until the summer of 1868, when she was suddenly overcome by fits of frenzy and confined to castle Tervuren. During the winter she was back in Laken, but in the spring of 1869 her condition worsened and from then on Charlotte was to remain in castle Tervuren. She laughed, wept, held monologues and talked incoherently. Still, there were many lucid periods during which she behaved dignified and gave perfectly normal answers to questions, read books, painted or played the piano. She was always concerned about her appearance and she was still a beauty.In March 1879, fire broke out in the castle. Charlotte was tied to her carriage with a shawl and brought to Laken. After a few weeks she was moved to castle Bouchout. There her condition worsened and in attacks of frenzy she smashed the furniture, breaking vases, tearing up books and cutting up paintings. Strangely though, she never damaged possessions that reminded her of Maximilian. King Leopold II never visited his sister at Bouchout, but Queen Marie Henriëtte and her daughters did. Princess Stephanie writes in her memoirs that even as a child she was never afraid of her aunt Charlotte. During World War I the German Emperor decreed that castle Bouchout was not to be disturbed, because Charlotte was the sister-in-law of his ally, the Austrian Emperor. It was not until January 19, 1927, that Charlotte died of pneumonia at the age of 86.


Francis Joseph I, Emperor of Austria experienced his share of war during the early years of his reign. During the revolutionary upheavals of 1848, he served for a few weeks with Josef Graf Radetzky’s (1766-1856) army in Italy and took part in the campaign against Hungary, famously entering Györ over a wooden bridge still smoldering with fire. In 1859, he authorized an ultimatum against Piedmont; in 1866 he risked war against Prussia. Both times the appeal to arms backfired. These defeats also cost him absolute power domestically. External defeats spelt internal reforms. Austria was turned into Austria-Hungary in 1867 and “neo-absolutism” into constitutional monarchy, with the trend towards parliamentary government gaining speed in Hungary, but being stopped in its tracks in Austria after the 1890s. However, since 1867, foreign policy and army administration were subject to scrutiny by a toothless parliamentary substitute, the so-called delegations, committees of both the Austrian and Hungarian parliaments, with a heavy dose of members from the House of Lords. While delegating routine administration to the governments in Vienna and Budapest, Francis Joseph thus managed to defend his prerogatives in terms of foreign policy and army command. In matters of foreign policy, Francis Joseph joined Germany in the Dual Alliance of 1879 and concluded less solid treaties with Italy (1882) and Romania (1883). Austria-Hungary did not take part in the scramble for Africa (or any other part of the world). It benefited from the classic age of imperialism, in which attention was centered on parts of the world where Austrian interests were not at stake. This blissful state of affairs ceased as soon as the survival of the Ottoman Empire was endangered. As a multinational empire, Austria-Hungary was surrounded by irredentist movements on all sides. German and Italian irredentism was contained by alliances with their potential sponsors; Poles and Ukrainians generally preferred Austrian rule to Russian despotism; Czechs and Slovaks, for the time being, had nowhere else to turn. Romanians and Serbs, however, were attracted by the economically more backward, but politically independent nation-states that had won their freedom from Ottoman rule during the 19th century.The dangers of Southern Slav irredentism may have been exaggerated by the alarmism of war hawks within the Austrian leadership; after all, Croats, Serbs and Bosnian Muslims, with all their differences, comprised only six out of the empire’s 54 million inhabitants. Moreover, in 1913, a government-sponsored party easily won most of the Serbian seats in the Bosnian diet. Yet, the growing power of an increasingly assertive Serbian “Piedmont” after the Balkan Wars of 1912-1913 worried the monarchy leadership. In the event of a war with Russia, Austria-Hungary now faced the prospect of having to fight on a second front in the south. Hopes that Bulgaria might crush the Serbs had been dashed by the Second Balkan War; even worse, the events of 1912-13 had seriously undermined Austria-Hungary’s Romanian alliance. Austria had issued ultimatums several times and mobilized troops during the Balkan Wars at a financial cost it could ill afford. Formally, it had achieved its aims (Montenegro’s withdrawal from Skutari and Serbia’s withdrawal from Albania), but it had been unable to prevent Serbia’s expansion.Francis Joseph wanted none of such devious plots and counter-plots. In January 1915, he replaced Berchtold with the ponderous Baron Istvan Burian (1852-1922), who pursued a more intransigent line. He resented German lobbying to persuade the Austrians to enlarge their offers to the Italians. Such efforts did not even stop short of Katharina Schratt (1853-1940), Francis Joseph’s long-time confidant. It was in the spring of 1915 – and definitely not in the summer of 1914 – that Francis Joseph uttered the famous line that now the empire will at least go down honorably. He reluctantly agreed to open negotiations with Italy, after all, in late March of 1915, but was relieved when they foundered. He confided that it had been one of his happiest moments when Italy broke off the talks; it was as if a nightmare had been lifted from his shouldersIn domestic politics, Francis Joseph appreciated Istvan Tisza’s (1861-1918) ability to harness Hungary’s resources for the war effort, whereas Austrian politicians deplored Tisza’s ascendancy, especially after food shortages created additional friction between the two halves of the empire. In the Austrian half of the monarchy, the emperor turned a blind eye to the military’s encroachments on civilian administration for a long time. He agreed to replace the governor of Bohemia in early 1915 and resented but did not overturn the military’s decision to arrest Karel Kramar (1860-1937) in May 1915. In October 1915, he seemed for a moment to bow to outside pressure and considered replacing Karl Graf Stürgkh (1859-1916) as prime minister, but finally decided against it.Francis Joseph was a faithful adherent of the German alliance but complained about the opaque character of decision-making in Berlin and resented German attempts to turn the alliance into an ever deeper union, a “Mitteleuropa” that would constitutionally link the two empires (in return for turning Poland over to Austria). On the other hand, Francis Joseph had never been averse to creating a unified command on the Eastern Front, if only that would pave the way for greater German support against Russia. After the Brusilov Offensive in June 1916 had demonstrated the bankruptcy of Conrad von Hötzendorf’s go-it-alone strategy, he personally took a lead to establish the Ober Ost. When Conrad asked the officer presenting him with the unwelcome news that he had to answer to Paul von Hindenburg (1847-1934) in future, who had drafted such a criminal document, he was told: “His Majesty has personally dictated it to me.” Under the terms of the agreement, however, Francis Joseph did retain a power of veto over Hindenburg’s decisions

Sisi was born in Munich on December 24, 1837 as the fourth child of Duke Maximilian Joseph in Bavaria and Princess Ludovika, the daughter of Bavarian King Maximilian I and his second wife, Karolina von Baden. While growing up in Possenhofen Castle, she was carefree, living a leisurely lifestyle rather than being bogged down by rigid protocol. She did not even always attend her lessons.An introvert, Sisi went with her mother and older sister Helene to Bad Ischl in Austria, where Franz Joseph was to propose to Helene. Fate intervened, and Franz Joseph was immediately bewitched by Sisi instead. He told his mother, who had a strong hold on him, that he would never marry if he was not allowed to wed Sisi, then 15 years old. A few days later the two lovebirds announced their engagement. A mere eight months passed before the wedding took place at Vienna’s Augustinian Church on April 24, 1854. Soon riddled by health problems, Sisi became quickly disenchanted with court life, and an emotional distance between herself and her husband arose.During her first trip to Hungary with her husband, Sisi fell in love with this nation that exhibited so much independence. She felt strong ties with the people. The feeling was mutual. While Sisi did not delve much into politics, she played an instrumental role in the negotiations that resulted in the Dual Monarchy of 1867 and made sure that Hungary obtained equal rights. That year Emperor Franz Joseph was declared King of Hungary while Sisi was proclaimed the nation’s queen. She learned Hungarian, too.Even though she had been warned of possible assassination attempts, Sisi traveled to Geneva in disguise during 1898 at the age of 60. While she and her lady-in-waiting were walking along the promenade at 1:35 p.m. on Saturday, September 10, the 25-year old Italian anarchist Luigi Luccheni, who had previously worked as a valet to the Prince of Aragon, stabbed her with a sharpened needle file. Sisi collapsed and lost consciousness. She did make it to the boat she had planned to ride on but needed immediate medical attention, and the boat quickly returned to Geneva. By the time her body was laid down on the bed of her hotel room, it was too late. She had passed away at 2:10 p.m. When the emperor received news of her death, he was devastated as the two had developed a close friendship toward the end of Sisi’s life.The assassination of Empress Elisabeth of Austria.It was a beautiful Indian summer day in Geneva, Switzerland, when Empress Elisabeth of Austria left the Hotel Beau-Rivage, where she spent a night incognito, to hurry to the steamship “Genève”. On this Saturday, 10 September 1898, Empress Elisabeth was assassinated by Luigi Lucheni, an Italian anarchist. The tragic event was well covered in the coeval press, as Elisabeth of Austria  also known as Sisi  was a mysterious fairy-tale princess. She was obsessively concerned about her beauty and spent several hours a day just to groom her knee-long hair. Sports and diets were her passion, and she loved to hike and to ride, but was so slim that she suffered from famine oedema.As a Bavarian princess who enjoyed a happy and unstrained childhood, the extremely strict court life in Vienna was a burden Elisabeth never got used to. She started to travel and wrote melancholic poems, and after the tragic death of her only son Rudolf she disappeared nearly completely from the Austrian court.When Elisabeth was sixty years old, she followed an invitation from the Rothschild family to Geneva. Together with her lady-in-waiting, the Hungarian Countess Irma Sztáray, she walked the short distance between the hotel and the pier without her entourage, despite warnings of possible assassination attempts.
Luigi Lucheni, a poor man full of rage for the upper nobility, ran towards them as they walked by on the promenade and stabbed Elisabeth directly into her heart with a self-made weapon composed of a small sharp file. But neither the empress nor her lady-in-waiting realised what really happened. Thinking of a robbery attempt, they went on boarding the ship. A few minutes later, Elisabeth lost consciousness and died

Habsburg-Lorraine, Francis JosephEmperor of Austria and King of Hungary.Born 18 August 1830 in Schönbrunn Palace, Austria .Died 21 November 1916 in Schönbrunn Palace, Austria.Under the terms of the 1867 constitution, Francis Joseph retained his prerogatives in foreign policy. His decision to opt for war in 1914 was largely a result of the frustrations of Austria’s policy during the Balkan Wars of 1912-13. Francis Joseph supported the high-handed policy of the military against his better judgment, but moved to curtail Franz Conrad von Hötzendorf’s position when he opted for the creation of a unified command in the east. He was a firm believer in the Dual Alliance, but opposed attempts to browbeat him into a Mitteleuropa and resented German efforts to buy off Italy at the expense of Austria in 1915.

Franz Joseph: emperor of Austria-Hungary,the most beloved emperor of the Habsburg Monarchy.Franz Joseph, also called Francis Joseph, , emperor of Austria (1848–1916) and king of Hungary (1867–1916), who divided his empire into the Dual Monarchy, in which Austria and Hungary coexisted as equal partners. In 1879 he formed an alliance with Prussian-led Germany, and in 1914 his ultimatum to Serbia led Austria and Germany into World War I.Elisabeth of Bavaria ( 1837 –  1898) was Empress of Austria and Queen of Hungary, and many others (see Grand title of the Empress of Austria) by marriage to Emperor Franz Joseph I. Marie Valérie Habsbourg, Empress Elisabeth (Sissi), Emperor Franz Joseph I, Prince Leopold of Bavaria, Archduchess Gisela, Crown Princess Stephanie, Crown Prince Rudolf.On 24 April 1854 Franz Joseph married his first cousin Elisabeth (1837–1898), who was seven years his junior and the daughter of one of his mother’s sisters. The romantic circumstances of their first encounter –it was in fact Elisabeth’s elder sister Helene who had been intended as the emperor’s bride.After living through the violent deaths of so many relatives, Emperor Franz Joseph died on November 21, 1916, in the middle of World War I, at the age of 86 in Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna. His great nephew succeeded him as Emperor Karl I of Austria, but only reigned for two years as the monarchy was abolished at the end of World War I. Emperor Franz Joseph was buried in Franz Josephs Gruft (Franz Joseph’s Crypt) in the Imperial Crypt between the tombs of his wife and his son.

Empress Elizabeth of Austria, Sisi: The last Queen of Jerusalem: (1837-1898).Detesting the strict regimen and ceremony of royal life, Empress Elisabeth, nicknamed Sisi, danced to the beat of her own drum, defying Habsburg protocol. The longest reigning Austrian empress – a post she held for 44 years – championed individual identity and independence as a free spirit who traveled the world and wrote poetry. Certainly the wife of Emperor Franz Joseph I came face-to-face with many a tragedy. Fate was unkind to her throughout her life, and she was not even spared a peaceful death. An Italian anarchist made sure of that. Concentrating on beauty and exercise all her life, she became a world-renowned icon.

 Emperor Franz Joseph at Empress Elisabeth’s coffin in the Imperial Crypt.Elisabeth Amalie Eugenie ("Sisi")died-10 September 1898 (aged 60) Geneva, Switzerland.. was stabbed to death. Elisabeth's body was carried back to Vienna aboard a funeral train. The inscription on her coffin read, “Elisabeth, Empress of Austria”. The Hungarians were outraged and the words, “and Queen of Hungary” were hastily added. The entire Austro-Hungarian Empire was in deep mourning; 82 sovereigns and high-ranking nobles followed her funeral cortege on the morning of 17 September to the tomb in the Church of the Capuchins.

Francis I, Emperor of Austria 1804–1835: formerly Francis II, Holy Roman Emperor Armoiries Léopold II Habsbourg Lorrai. Wppen Habsburg-Lothringen Schild.svFerdinand I, Emperor of Austria 1835–1848 Habsburg Personal Arms Ferdinan.Francis Joseph, Emperor of Austria 1848–16. Habsburg Personal Arms Franz Joseph and Charles.Charles I, Emperor of Austria 1916–1918. He died in exile in 1922. His wife was of the House of Bourbon-Parma.Francis V 1846–1848, 1849–1859 House of Habsburg-Lorraine: Modena line, post monarchy Coat of Arms of the House of Habsburg Este.svg Francis V (1859–1875) Armoiries Autriche-Este 1846.svg Franz Ferdinand, Archduke of Austria-Este & Crown Prince of Austria-Hungary (1875–1914)Armoiries Autriche-Este 1875.svg Karl, Archduke of Austria-Este (1914–1917) Robert, Archduke of Austria-Este (1917–1996) Armoiries Autriche-Este 1914.svg Lorenz, Archduke of Austria-Este (1996–Present) House of Habsburg-Lorraine: Archduchess of Austria, Empress consort of Brazil and Queen consort of Portugal Dona Maria Leopoldina of Austria (22 January 1797 – 11 December 1826) was an archduchess of Austria, Empress consort of Brazil and Queen consort of Portugal House of Habsburg-Lorraine: Empress consort of France Marie Louise of Austria 1810–1814 House of Habsburg-Lorraine: Duchess of Parma The duchy of Parma was likewise assigned to a Habsburg, but did not stay in the House long before succumbing to Italian unification. It was granted to the second wife of Napoleon I of France, Maria Luisa Duchess of Parma, a daughter of the Francis II, Holy Roman Emperor, who was the mother of Napoleon II of France. Napoleon had divorced his wife Rose de Tascher de la Pagerie (better known to history as Josephine de Beauharnais) in her favour. Maria Luisa 1814–1847 House of Habsburg-Lorraine: Emperor of Mexico Coat of Arms of the Mexican Empire adopted by Maximilian I in 1864 Maximilian, the adventurous second son of Archduke Franz Karl, was invited as part of Napoleon III's manipulations to take the throne of Mexico, becoming Emperor Maximilian I of Mexico. The conservative Mexican nobility, as well as the clergy, supported this Second Mexican Empire. His consort, Charlotte of Belgium, a daughter of King Leopold I of Belgium and a princess of the House of Saxe-Coburg Gotha, encouraged her husband's acceptance of the Mexican crown and accompanied him as Empress Carlota of Mexico. The adventure did not end well. Maximilian was shot in Cerro de las CampanasHabsburg-Lorraine,On 6 August 1806 the Holy Roman Empire was dissolved under the French Emperor Napoleon I's reorganization of Germany. However, in anticipation of the loss of his title of Holy Roman Emperor, Francis II declared himself hereditary Emperor of Austria (as Francis I) on 11 August 1804, three months after Napoleon had declared himself Emperor of the French on 18 May 1804.Emperor Francis I of Austria used the official full list of titles: "We, Francis the First, by the grace of God Emperor of Austria; King of Jerusalem, Hungary, Bohemia, Dalmatia, Croatia, Slavonia, Galicia and Lodomeria; Archduke of Austria; Duke of Lorraine, Salzburg, Würzburg, Franconia, Styria, Carinthia, and Carniola; Grand Duke of Cracow; Grand Prince of Transylvania; Margrave of Moravia; Duke of Sandomir, Masovia, Lublin, Upper and Lower Silesia, Auschwitz and Zator, Teschen, and Friule; Prince of Berchtesgaden and Mergentheim; Princely Count of Habsburg, Gorizia, and Gradisca and of the Tyrol; and Margrave of Upper and Lower Lusatia and Istria".The Austro-Hungarian Compromise of 1867 created a real union, whereby the Kingdom of Hungary was granted co-equality with the Empire of Austria, that henceforth didn't include the Kingdom of Hungary as a crownland anymore. The Austrian and the Hungarian lands became independent entities enjoying equal status.Under this arrangement, the Hungarians referred to their ruler as king and never emperor . This prevailed until the Habsburgs' deposition from both Austria and Hungary in 1918 following defeat in World War I.On 11 November 1918, with his empire collapsing around him, the last Habsburg ruler, Charles I (who also reigned as Charles IV of Hungary) issued a proclamation recognizing Austria's right to determine the future of the state and renouncing any role in state affairs. Two days later, he issued a separate proclamation for Hungary. Even though he did not officially abdicate, this is considered the end of the Habsburg dynasty. In 1919, the new republican Austrian government subsequently passed a law banishing the Habsburgs from Austrian territory until they renounced all intentions of regaining the throne and accepted the status of private citizens. Charles made several attempts to regain the throne of Hungary, and in 1921 the Hungarian government passed a law which revoked Charles' rights and dethroned the Habsburgs.The Habsburgs did not formally abandon all hope of returning to power until Otto von Habsburg, the eldest son of Charles I, renounced all claims to the throne.Queen Zita of Hungary and Crown Prince Otto of Hungary (Otto von Habsburg) arrive at the royal palace in Budapest on coronation day 1916 december 30(th)Charles I (Karl Franz Joseph Ludwig Hubert Georg Otto Maria; 17 August 1887 – 1 April 1922) was the last reigning monarch of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. He was the last Emperor of Austria, the last King of Hungary (as Charles IV),the last King of Bohemia (as Charles III), and the last monarch belonging to the House of Habsburg-Lorraine. After his uncle Franz Ferdinand was assassinated in 1914, Charles became the designated successor of the Emperor Franz Josef. Charles I reigned from 1916 until 1918, when he "renounced participation" in state affairs, but did not abdicate. He spent the remaining years of his life attempting to restore the monarchy until his death in 1922. Beatified by Pope John Paul II in 2004, he is known to the Catholic Church as Blessed Karl of Austria

The coat of arms of Austria-Hungary was that country's symbol during its existence from the Austro-Hungarian Compromise of 1867 to its dissolution in 1918. The double-headed eagle of the ruling House of Habsburg-Lorraine was used by the common Imperial and Royal (k. u. k.) institutions of the dual monarchy. Additionally, each of the two parts of the real union had its own coat of arms.As the double-headed eagle was reminiscent of the Reichsadler insignia of the defunct Holy Roman Empire and also the symbol of the Cisleithanian ('Austrian') half of the real union, the Hungarian government urged for the introduction of a new common coat of arms, which took place in 1915, in the midst of World War I. The new insignia combined the coat of arms of the separate halves of the Dual Monarchy, linked by the armorials of the Habsburg-Lorraine dynasty and the motto indivisibiliter ac inseparabiliter..

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