Marie-Thérèse (1717-1780), archiduchesse d'Autriche (1740-1780), reine de Hongrie

Marie-Thérèse (1717-1780), archiduchesse d'Autriche (1740-1780), reine de Hongrie

Marie-Thérèse (1717-1780), archiduchesse d'Autriche (1740-1780), reine de Hongrie

Fille de Charles VI, empereur du Saint-Empire. Malgré les efforts de son père pour garantir sa prétention à l'Autriche, son adhésion a déclenché la guerre de Succession d'Autriche (1740-1748), au cours de laquelle elle a perdu la Silésie face à Frédéric II de Prusse, mais a conservé l'Autriche contre la menace de Charles de Bavière, Saint-Empire. Empereur de 1742 jusqu'à sa mort en 1745. Elle épousa en 1736 François, duc de Lorraine, son cousin, qui succéda à Charles de Bavière comme empereur François Ier, bien qu'il fût toujours éclipsé par sa femme. La perte de la Silésie a été l'un des facteurs qui ont conduit à la guerre de Sept Ans (1754-1763), lorsque Marie-Thérèse s'est alliée avec la Russie et la France contre la Prusse et la Grande-Bretagne, à la fin de laquelle Frédéric de Prusse a conservé la Silésie, et a gagné augmentation du pouvoir en Allemagne. Son fils devint l'empereur Joseph II en 1765, et lui succéda en Autriche après sa mort.

Livres sur la guerre de Sept Ans | Index des sujets : Guerre de Sept Ans


Marie-Thérèse est née le 13 mai 1717, fille de l'empereur allemand Charles VI (1711-1740) et de son épouse Elizabeth von Braunschweig-Wolfenbttel. Son frère aîné Léopold était mort peu de temps auparavant et l'empereur était resté sans descendance masculine. Dès 1713, il avait promulgué une loi sur la famille, la Pragmatique Sanction, en vertu de laquelle les biens des Habsbourg devaient rester indivis et, à défaut d'héritier mâle, revenir à sa fille aînée. Il négociait constamment avec les puissances étrangères pour obtenir leur reconnaissance de cette sanction pragmatique. Marie-Thérèse était dotée de dons brillants, de beauté, d'amabilité et d'intelligence, et était universellement admirée en tant que fille. Le 14 février 1736, elle épousa le duc François-Etienne de Lorraine, qui par la paix de Vienne, en 1738, reçut la Toscane au lieu de la Lorraine. Charles VI meurt subitement le 20 octobre 1740, à l'âge de 56 ans, et Marie-Thérèse prend possession des territoires autrichiens sans aucune formation politique. Son mari était un homme aimable, mais d'un mental médiocre et par conséquent de peu d'aide pour elle. Charles, d'ailleurs, laissait les affaires intérieures de sa monarchie, notamment les finances et l'armée, dans un état lamentable. Sa famille envisageait l'avenir avec inquiétude et perplexité. Marie-Thérèse a été la première à recouvrer son sang-froid et à apprécier les problèmes qui se présentaient à elle. Le jour même de la mort de son père, elle a reçu l'hommage des conseillers privés et de la noblesse en tant que reine de Hongrie, reine de Bohême et archiduchesse d'Autriche, et lors de sa première réunion de cabinet a exprimé sa détermination à défendre pleinement tous les droits qu'elle avait hérité. Tous admiraient sa fermeté, sa dignité et sa force d'esprit. Certes, ils étaient peu nombreux à croire qu'elle réussirait.

A Vienne, les hommes se familiarisaient avec l'idée « de devenir bavarois ». L'électeur Charles Albert de Bavière, qui n'avait jamais reconnu la sanction pragmatique, revendique l'Autriche comme descendante d'une fille de l'empereur Ferdinand Ier (1556-1564), et se réfère à un testament de 1547, dans lequel il est fait mention cependant non de l'échec de la question « masculine » mais « légitime ». Il obtint l'appui de la France, ce qui poussa l'Espagne et la Saxe à revendiquer également la succession. Un péril plus grand apparut dans un quartier où il était le moins attendu : le roi Frédéric II de Prusse revendiquait la Silésie. Il promit d'aider Marie-Thérèse, à condition qu'elle lui cède Jgerndorf, Brieg, Wohlau et Leignitz, sur lesquels il prétendait avoir des droits héréditaires. Sinon, il s'allierait avec la France, la Bavière et la Saxe et lui ferait la guerre. Il voulait, en bon marchand, profiter de l'occasion, et proposa un marché par lequel Marie-Thérèse et lui-même pourraient régler le compte entre eux. Car en cas d'acceptation de sa proposition, Marie-Thérèse aurait été épargnée par la guerre résultant de la succession d'Autriche. Marie-Thérèse était cependant aussi convaincue de ses droits qu'elle était déterminée à les faire respecter par l'action. Que la Prusse était en droit d'attendre des concessions de l'Autriche, puisque, en 1686, une indemnité lui avait été promise pour les duchés de Silésie, Marie-Thérèse n'en tenait pas compte. Le roi envahit à la hâte la Silésie et envoya un courtisan désagréable et vaniteux comme son représentant. Ainsi éclate la première guerre de Silésie (1740-1742). Frédéric II remporta une grande victoire à Mollwitz (10 avril 1741). Le 4 juin, il s'allie à la France qui donne désormais son soutien à l'électeur de Bavière, qui aspire à la dignité impériale et gagne à ses côtés la plupart des électeurs. Marie-Thérèse s'est efforcée en vain d'obtenir la couronne pour son époux Francis Stephen. Dans ses terres héréditaires, elle trouva son principal appui contre les menaces de ses ennemis. La tenue énergique de la princesse souleva l'enthousiasme général. Lorsqu'à Presbourg elle fit appel à la chevalerie des Hongrois, les nobles s'écrièrent qu'ils étaient prêts à donner leur sang et leur vie pour leur reine (septembre 1741). Cependant, comme les Bavarois, les Français et les Saxons avançaient contre elle, elle fut obligée de conclure une trêve avec la Prusse afin d'éviter le danger de ce côté.

Charles Albert de Bavière avec les Français avait occupé Passau le 31 juillet et Linz le 15 septembre, et avait été reconnu par la Diète de Haute-Autriche. Le 26 novembre, il surprend Prague avec l'aide des Saxons et se fait couronner roi de Bohême le 7 décembre. Le 24 janvier 1742, il est également élu empereur romain sous le nom de Charles VII. Son succès fut cependant de courte durée. Les forces de la reine avaient déjà fait une entrée dans son propre pays. Pourtant, le plus important était de se débarrasser de son antagoniste le plus dangereux. Frédéric II avait rompu la trêve, était entré en Moravie « pour plumer les poules moraves », et avait remporté une victoire à Chotusitz (17 mai 1742). Marie-Thérèse conclut la paix de Breslau (6 juin 1742) et lui cède la Silésie à l'exception de Teschen, Troppau et Jgerndorf. Elle se tournait maintenant contre les Bavarois et les Français. La Bohême fut reprise et Marie-Thérèse couronnée reine (mai 1743). Son allié, le roi George II d'Angleterre, s'avança avec « l'armée pragmatique » et battit les Français à Dettingen (27 juin 1743). L'empereur devint un fugitif à Francfort. La position avantageuse de son rival inspirait à Frédéric II la crainte de perdre à nouveau ses récentes conquêtes en Silésie. Il s'allie donc à nouveau avec la France et l'empereur et rompt la paix en envahissant la Bohême. Mais comme les Français n'ont pas envoyé l'armée promise et que Charles VII est mort le 20 janvier 1745, le roi de Prusse a été contraint de compter sur ses propres forces et de se retirer en Silésie. Les Bavarois firent la paix avec l'Autriche et à Dresde (mai 1745) la Bavière, la Saxe et l'Autriche acceptèrent de réduire la Prusse à son ancienne condition d'électorat de Brandebourg. Les victoires prussiennes à Hohenfriedberg, Soor-Trautenau et Kesselsdorf (juin, septembre et décembre 1745) renversèrent les alliés, et la seconde guerre de Silésie dut donc être réglée par la paix de Dresde, où la Prusse fut confirmée dans sa possession de la Silésie. Pendant ce temps, le mari de Marie-Thérèse, François-Etienne, fut choisi empereur le 4 octobre 1745. La Prusse le reconnut. Il prit le nom de François Ier (1745-1765). Ainsi la femme pleine d'entrain avait obtenu ce qu'il lui était possible d'obtenir, la dignité impériale restée dans sa famille, et la sanction pragmatique était pratiquement confirmée. La guerre continuait à se faire aux Pays-Bas et en Italie, mais ce conflit n'était plus redoutable. La conclusion de la paix à Aix la Chapelle, en 1748, mit fin à la guerre de succession d'Autriche. Les relations des puissances européennes n'étaient pas profondément modifiées. Ce qui était important, c'était que la Prusse, bien que non reconnue comme une grande puissance, devait être tolérée comme telle.


Le Taler de 1780

Le poids et la teneur en argent du taler étaient en fait déjà déterminés le 30 juillet 1748, dans un édit de Marie-Thérèse. Jusqu'à ce que la convention de monnaie ci-dessus soit signée, son poids et sa teneur en argent n'étaient utilisés que pour les pièces frappées dans les zones gouvernées par Marie-Thérèse.

Il convient de mentionner que le taler Maria Theresia avait moins de poids et contenait moins d'argent que les talers précédemment frappés. Avec la quantité d'argent indiquant directement la valeur de la monnaie, on pourrait aussi appeler cela "l'inflation".

Des talers avec le portrait de Marie-Thérèse ont été frappés depuis 1741. Initialement, les pièces avaient un aspect changeant. À partir de 1765 (après la mort de son mari), la Taler a été frappée par le portrait de Marie-Thérèse montrant le voile d'une veuve. L'apparence n'a commencé à être similaire qu'après la mort de Marie-Thérèse en 1780. Depuis lors, le taler a été réattribué à la date de 1780. Au départ, il y avait des variations faciles à identifier dans l'apparence de la pièce. En raison des améliorations apportées à la technologie de frappe des pièces, l'apparence de la pièce n'a pratiquement pas changé depuis 1850. Pour cette raison, la date de frappe des pièces frappées après 1780 n'est souvent pas facile, voire pas du tout, à déterminer.

Le Maria Theresia Taler était la monnaie officielle en Autriche jusqu'au 31 octobre 1858. Il a été utilisé comme monnaie dans une grande partie de l'Afrique jusqu'après la seconde guerre mondiale. C'était courant de l'Afrique du Nord à la Somalie, en passant par l'Éthiopie, le Kenya, jusqu'au littoral de la Tansanie. On le trouve aussi partout dans les régions musulmanes d'Asie et en Inde.

Le 19 septembre 1857, l'empereur François-Joseph Ier d'Autriche a déclaré que la Maria Theresia Taler était une monnaie commerciale officielle. Par la suite, il a été retouché non seulement en Autriche, mais aussi à Rome, Londres, Paris, Bruxelles, Bombay et d'autres endroits. Cela peut être considéré comme un indicateur de l'importance de cette pièce.

Plusieurs centaines de millions de pièces du Maria Theresia Taler ont été frappées depuis 1751. Au cours des deux premiers siècles seulement, le nombre confirmé atteint 320 000 000. Certaines sources affirment même que plus de 800 000 000 de pièces ont été frappées. Aujourd'hui, la Maria Theresia Taler est encore frappée au besoin dans l'atelier de Vienne.


Marie-Thérèse

Marie-Thérèse
Reine de Hongrie et de Bohême, impératrice allemande et archiduchesse d'Autriche
1717 – 1780 après JC

Marie-Thérèse, reine de Hongrie et de Bohême, impératrice allemande et archiduchesse d'Autriche, née à Vienne, était la fille aînée de l'empereur Charles VI.

En 1736, elle épousa Etienne, duc de Lorraine, qui fut nommé régent commun avec elle après son accession au trône de Hongrie, d'Autriche et de Bohême en 1740. Son règne fut rempli de nombreuses luttes contre les partis adverses, notamment la guerre de Sept Ans. entre l'Autriche et la Prusse.

Après le rétablissement de la paix en 1763, l'impératrice institua de nombreuses réformes dans l'armée, la justice et l'éducation ouvertes au commerce des ports de Trieste et de Fiume, expulsa les jésuites et abolit la torture légale. c'était une femme de caractère noble, d'une beauté frappante dans sa jeunesse. Elle était l'autre de seize enfants, parmi lesquels les empereurs Joseph II et Léopold II, et la malheureuse Marie-Antoinette, reine de France.

Bien que catholique romaine zélée, elle a maintenu les droits de la couronne contre le pouvoir papal et s'est efforcée de corriger certains des pires abus de l'Église. Elle interdit la présence des prêtres à la rédaction des testaments, abolit les droits d'asile dans les églises et les couvents et supprime l'Inquisition à Milan.

Référence: Femmes célèbres Un aperçu des réalisations féminines à travers les âges avec les histoires de la vie de cinq cents femmes remarquables Par Joseph Adelman. Copyright, 1926 par Ellis M. Lonow Company.


Marie-Thérèse

Marie-Thérèse
Le plus grand des souverains autrichiens
1717 – 1780 après JC

Cette femme de renom, archiduchesse d'Autriche, reine de Hongrie et de Bohême et impératrice d'Allemagne, née à Vienne le 13 mai 1717, était la fille aînée de George VI d'Autriche, empereur d'Allemagne. En 1724, Charles, par son testament, connu sous le nom de Sanction pragmatique, réglementa l'ordre de succession dans la maison d'Autriche, déclarant qu'à défaut de descendance mâle, sa fille aînée serait héritière de tous les dominions autrichiens, et ses enfants après sa. La sanction pragmatique était garantie par la Diète de l'Empire, et par tous les princes allemands, et par plusieurs puissances d'Europe, mais non par les Bourbons. En 1736, elle épousa François de Lorraine, à qui elle donna une part égale au gouvernement à la mort de son père en 1740.

Lors de son avènement, la monarchie était épuisée, les finances embarrassées, le peuple mécontent et l'armée faible. Pour ajouter à la gravité de la situation, la Prusse, la Bavière, la Saxe et la Sardaigne, avec l'aide de la France, firent valoir des revendications sur l'ensemble ou sur des parties de ses États. Marie-Thérèse, cependant, se rendit immédiatement à Vienne et prit possession de l'Autriche, de la Bohême et de ses autres États allemands. Elle se rendit ensuite à Presbourg, prêta serment à la Constitution de Hongrie, et fut solennellement proclamée reine de ce royaume en 1741. Frédéric de Prusse offrit son amitié à la jeune reine à condition qu'elle lui cède la Silésie, ce qu'elle refusa résolument, et il a ensuite envahi cette province. L'électeur de Bavière, aidé des Français, envahit aussi l'Autriche et poussa ses troupes jusqu'à Vienne. La reine se réfugia à Presbourg, où elle convoqua la Diète hongroise et apparaissant au milieu d'eux avec son jeune fils dans les bras, elle lança un vibrant appel à leur fidélité. Les nobles hongrois, tirant leurs épées, s'exclamèrent à l'unanimité : « Nous mourrons pour notre reine, Marie-Thérèse ! » Tous, ils levèrent une armée et chassèrent les Français et les Bavarois des États héréditaires.

Entre-temps, Charles Albert, électeur de Bavière, fut choisi empereur d'Allemagne, sous le nom de Charles VII et Frédéric de Prusse fit bientôt la paix avec Marie-Thérèse, qui fut obligée de lui céder la Silésie.

En 1745, Charles VII mourut et François, l'époux de Marie-Thérèse, fut élu empereur. Trois ans plus tard, la paix d'Aix-la-Chapelle mettait fin à la guerre de succession d'Autriche, et il s'ensuivit une période de paix. Pendant cette période, Marie-Thérèse institua d'importantes réformes financières, fit de son mieux pour favoriser l'agriculture, l'industrie et le commerce, et améliora et doubla presque les revenus nationaux, tandis que les charges diminuaient.

En 1756 commença la guerre de Sept Ans, entre la France, l'Autriche et la Russie d'un côté, et la Prusse de l'autre, pour confirmer Frédéric dans la possession de la Silésie. Cela prit fin en 1763, laissant l'Autriche et la Prusse avec les mêmes frontières qu'auparavant. A la fin des hostilités, l'impératrice renouvela ses efforts pour promouvoir la prospérité nationale, améliorant la condition de la paysannerie, allégeant le code pénal, fondant des écoles, organisant des sociétés de bienfaisance, bref, favorisant le bien-être de ses sujets par tous les sages arts de progrès pacifique.

Après la mort de son mari, en 1765, la reine mère associe son fils Joseph, élu roi des Romains en 1764, à elle-même dans le gouvernement des États héréditaires. Elle conserva cependant l'administration du gouvernement jusqu'à sa mort, le 29 novembre 1780.

Personnellement, Marie-Thérèse était une femme d'apparence majestueuse et gagnante, et elle était animée de sentiments vraiment royaux et d'un esprit intrépide par cette union rare de tact féminin avec une énergie masculine et une activité agitée, elle gagnait non seulement l'affection et même l'admiration enthousiaste de ses sujets, mais elle a élevé l'Autriche de la condition la plus misérable à une position de puissance assurée. Bien que catholique romaine zélée, elle maintint les droits de sa propre couronne contre la cour de Rome et s'efforça de corriger certains des pires abus de l'Église.

Marie-Thérèse était mère de seize enfants, tous nés dans les vingt ans, dont dix lui survécurent. Parmi ceux-ci, Joseph II lui succéda Léopold, grand-duc de Toscane, suivit son frère sur le trône impérial tandis que Léopold II Ferdinand devenait duc de Modène et Marie-Antoinette épousa Louis XVI de France.

Référence: La femme : sa position, son influence et ses réalisations dans le monde civilisé publié par la King-Richardson Co. en 1903.


Relations étrangères

Ni la paix de 1745 (par laquelle l'Autriche a cédé la Silésie à la Prusse) ni la paix de 1748 (qui a mis fin à la guerre de Marie-Thérèse avec le reste de ses ennemis) n'ont mis fin à ses efforts pour moderniser l'armée. Les idées fulgurantes de son nouveau chancelier, Wenzel Anton von Kaunitz, enflammèrent sa détermination à récupérer la Silésie, voire à détruire la Prusse. Dans un fameux « renversement des alliances » (1756), elle renverse l'Angleterre, le vieil allié et « banquier » des Habsbourg, et s'allie à la France, leur ancien ennemi. De plus, elle avait conclu un traité avec la Russie, nouvelle venue dans les rivalités européennes. Elle n'a prêté que peu d'attention aux ramifications mondiales de la guerre de Sept Ans qui a suivi. Lorsque sa fin a scellé la perte de la Silésie et laissé la monarchie avec une montagne de dettes, elle est devenue une championne de la paix. Jusqu'en 1779, elle a à elle seule frustré une autre guerre à grande échelle avec la Prusse, risquée par son premier-né autodidacte, Joseph II, qui, à la mort de son père, était devenu co-régent dans les domaines des Habsbourg (et avait été élu empereur).

Bien que François n'ait pas été un mari fidèle, Marie-Thérèse n'a jamais faibli dans son amour, et sa mort subite en 1765 l'a plongée dans un chagrin prolongé. Elle en sortit, son zèle pour l'activité n'étant nullement altéré. Une nouvelle politique de la dette publique, le comblement des vides de la Hongrie, la rédaction d'un code pénal pour supplanter l'enchevêtrement des systèmes locaux, et une sorte de loi des pauvres, ce ne sont là que quelques-unes des innovations dans lesquelles elle-même a pris une part active. main, avec son bon sens au service de l'apprentissage du livre qui lui manquait. Parallèlement au retrait forcé de l'Église des affaires laïques, elle en vint à penser qu'il incombait à l'État de contrôler la vie intellectuelle de ses sujets. C'est elle qui a institutionnalisé la censure gouvernementale d'autre part, c'est elle aussi qui a lancé des plans pour l'enseignement primaire obligatoire.


Descendants de Marie-Thérèse, impératrice du Saint Empire romain

Maria Theresa (13/05/201717, Palais de la Hofburg, Vienne, Wien, Autriche - 29/11/1780, Palais de la Hofburg, Vienne, Wien, Autriche) était la Sainte impératrice romaine, reine de Hongrie, de Bohême, de Dalmatie, de Croatie , de Slavonie, de Galicie, de Lodomeria, archiduchesse d'Autriche, margrave de Moravie, de Burgau, de Haute et Basse Lusace, grande-duchesse de Toscane, grande princesse de Transylvanie, princesse de Souabe, duchesse de Bourgogne, de Styrie, de Carinthie , de Carniole, de Brabant, de Limbourg, de Luxembourg, de Gueldre, de W&# x00fcrttemberg, de Haute et Basse Silésie, de Milan, de Mantoue, de Parme, de Plaisance, de Guastalla, d'Auschwitz, de Zator, de Lorraine et de Bar, comtesse princière de Habsbourg, de Flandre, de Tyrol, de Hainaut, de Kyburg, de Gorizia et de Gradisca et de Namur, et dame du Wendish Mark et de Malines. En 1736, Marie-Thérèse épousa François III, duc de Lorraine. Ils ont eu 16 enfants.

- Maria Elisabeth, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (02/05/1737 - 06/07/1740)

- Maria Anna, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (10/06/1738 - 11/19/1789)

- Maria Carolina, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (12/01/1740 - 25/01/1741)

- Joseph II, empereur romain germanique (13/03/1741 - 20/02/1790)

- Maria Christina, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Duchesse de Teschen (13/05/201742 - 24/06/1798)

- Maria Elisabeth, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (13/08/1743 - 22/09/1808)

- Charles Joseph, Archiduc d'Autriche (01/02/1745 - 18/01/1761)

- Maria Amalia, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Duchesse de Parme (26/02//1746 - 18/06/1804)

- Léopold II, Empereur du Saint-Empire (05/05/1747 - 03/01/1792)

- Maria Carolina, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (17/09/1748)

- Maria Johanna Gabriela, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (02/04/1750 - 12/23/1762)

- Maria Josepha, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (19/03/1751 - 15/10/1767)

- Maria Carolina, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Reine de Naples et de Sicile (13/08/1752 - 08/09/1814)

- Ferdinand, Archiduc d'Autriche et Duc de Briesgau (01/06/1754 - 24/12/1806)

- Marie-Antoinette, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Reine de France (11/02/1755 - 10/16/1793)

- Maximilian Franz, Archiduc d'Autriche (12/08/1756 - 07/26/1801)

Par Joseph II, empereur romain germanique

- Marie-Thérèse, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (20/03/1762 - 23/01/1770)

- Maria Christina, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (20/11/1763)

Par Maria Christina, Archiduchesse d'Autriche

- Marie-Thérèse de Teschen (16/05/1767)

Par Maria Amalia, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Duchesse de Parme

- Maria Carolina, princesse de Parme et princesse héritière de Saxe (22/11/1770 - 01/03/1804)

- Louis Ier, duc de Parme et roi d'Étrurie (08/05/1773 - 05/27/1803)

- Maria Antonia, princesse de Parme (28/11/1774 - 20/02/1841)

- Charlotte, princesse de Parme (09/07/1777 - 04/05/1813)

- Philippe, prince de Parme (22/05/201783 - 02/07/1786)

- Antonia, princesse de Parme (21/10/1784)

- Maria Luisa, princesse de Parme (17/04/1787 - 22/11/1789)

Par Léopold II, Empereur du Saint Empire Romain

- Marie-Thérèse, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Reine de Saxe (14/06/1767 - 11/07/1827)

- François II, Empereur du Saint-Empire (02/12/1768 - 03/02/1835)

- Ferdinand III, Grand-Duc de Toscane (06/05/201769 - 18/06/1824)

- Maria Anna, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (21/04/201770 - 01/10/1809)

- Charles, Archiduc d'Autriche et Duc de Teschen (09/05/1771 - 04/30/1847)

- Léopold, Archiduc d'Autriche (14/08/1772 - 12/07/1795)

- Albert, Archiduc d'Autriche (19/12/1773 - 22/07/1774)

- Maximilien, Archiduc d'Autriche (23/12/1774 - 09/03/1778)

- Joseph, Archiduc d'Autriche (09/03/1776 - 13/01/1847)

- Maria Clementina, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Duchesse de Calabre (24/04/201777 - 11/03/1801)

- Anton, Archiduc d'Autriche (31/08/1779 - 02/04/1835)

- Maria Amalia, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (15/10/1780 - 25/12/1798)

- Johann, Archiduc d'Autriche (16/01/1782 - 05/11/1859)

- Joseph Johann, Archiduc d'Autriche (30/09/1783 - 16/01/1853)

- Louis, Archiduc d'Autriche (13/12/1784 - 21/12/1864)

- Rodolphe, Archiduc d'Autriche (01/08/1788 - 23/07/1831)

Par Maria Carolina, archiduchesse d'Autriche et reine de Naples et de Sicile

- Marie-Thérèse, princesse de Naples et de Sicile et impératrice du Saint-Empire (06/06/1772 - 04/13/1807)

- Luisa, princesse de Naples et de Sicile et grande-duchesse de Toscane (27/07/1773 - 19/09/1802)

- Carlo, duc de Calabre (01/04/1775 - 12/17/1778)

- Maria Anna, princesse de Naples et de Sicile (23/11/1775 - 22/02/1780)

- François Ier, roi des Deux-Siciles (14/08/1777 - 08/11/1830)

- Maria Christina, reine de Sardaigne (17/01/1779 - 11/03/1849)

- Francesco, prince de Naples et de Sicile (04/12/1780 - 01/02/1789)

- Maria Amalia, princesse de Naples et de Sicile et reine de France (26/04/1782 - 24/03/1866)

- Carlo, prince de Naples et de Sicile (18/06/1781 - 19/02/1783)

- Maria Christina, princesse de Naples et de Sicile (19/07/1783)

- Maria Antonia, princesse des Asturies (14/12/1784 - 21/05/20186)

- Maria Clotilde, princesse de Naples et de Sicile (18/02/1786 - 10/09/1792)

- Henrietta Maria, princesse de Naples et de Sicile (31/07/1787 - 20/09/1792)

- Carlo Francesco, Prince de Naples et de Sicile (26/08/1788 - 01/02/1789)

- Léopold, prince de Salerne (07/02/1790 - 03/10/1851)

- Alberto, Prince de Naples et de Sicile (02/05/201792 - 25/12/1798)

- Maria Elisabeth, princesse de Naples et de Sicile (12/02/1793 - 23/04/2001)

Par Ferdinand, archiduc d'Autriche et duc de Briesgau

- Joseph François d'Autriche (1772)

- Marie-Thérèse, reine de Sardaigne (11/01/1773 - 29/03/1832)

- Josépha, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (13/03/1775 - 20/08/1777)

- Marie Léopoldine, duchesse de Bavière (12/10/1776 - 23/06/1848)

- François IV, duc de Modène et Reggio (10/06/1779 - 21/01/1846)

- Ferdinand Karl, Archiduc d'Autriche-Este (25/04/1781 - 05/11/850)

- Maximilien Joseph, Archiduc d'Autriche-Este (14/07/1782 - 01/06/1863)

- Maria Antonia, Archiduchesse d'Autriche-Este (21/10/1784 - 08/04/1786)

- Karl, Archiduc d'Autriche-Este (21/10/1785 - 02/09/1809)

- Maria Ludovika, impératrice d'Autriche (12/14/1787 - 04/07/1816)

Par Marie-Antoinette, archiduchesse d'Autriche et reine de France

- Marie Th&# x00e9r&# x00e8se Charlotte, reine de France (19/12/1778 - 19/10/1851)

- Louis Joseph, Dauphin de France (22/10/1781 - 04/06/1789)

- Louis XVII, Roi Titulaire de France (27/03/1785 - 08/06/1795)

- Sophie, princesse de France (09/07/1786 - 19/06/1787)

Par Maria Carolina, princesse de Parme et princesse héritière de Saxe

- Amalia, princesse de Saxe (10/08/1794 - 18/09/1870)

- Maria Ferdinanda, Grande-Duchesse de Toscane (27/04/201796 - 03/01/1865)

- Frédéric Auguste II, roi de Saxe (18/05/201797 - 09/08/1854)

- Clemens, Prince de Saxe (05/01/1798 - 01/04/1822)

- Maria Anna, Grande-Duchesse de Toscane (15/11/1799 - 24/03/1832)

- Jean Ier, roi de Saxe (12/12/1801 - 29/10/1873)

- Maria Josepha Amalia, reine d'Espagne (12/06/1803 - 18/05/201829)

Par Louis Ier, duc de Parme et roi d'Étrurie

- Charles II, duc de Parme et roi d'Étrurie (22/12/1799 - 16/04/1883)

- Maria Luisa, princesse héréditaire de Saxe (10/02/1802 - 18/03/1857)

Par Marie-Thérèse, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Reine de Saxe (01/14/1767 - 11/07/1827)

- Maria Ludovika Auguste, princesse de Saxe (14/03/1795 - 15/04/201796)

- Frédéric Auguste, prince de Saxe (04/05/1796)

- Maria Johanna, princesse de Saxe (04/05/1798 - 10/30/1799)

- Marie-Thérèse, princesse de Saxe (15/10/1799)

Par François II, empereur du Saint Empire romain et Marie-Thérèse, princesse de Naples et de Sicile et impératrice du Saint Empire romain

- Maria Luisa, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Impératrice de France (12/12/1791 - 17/12/1847)

- Ferdinand Ier, Empereur d'Autriche (19/04/201793 - 29/06/1875)

- Marie Caroline, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (06/04/1794 - 03/17/1795)

- Caroline Ludovika, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (22/12/1795 - 30/06/1797)

- Caroline Josepha Leopoldine, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Impératrice du Brésil (1/22/1797 - 12/11/1826)

- Maria Clementina, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Princesse de Salerne (03/01/1798 - 09/03/1881)

- Joseph Franz Leopold, Archiduc d'Autriche (09/04/201799 - 30/06/1807)

- Maria Carolina, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Reine de Saxe (04/08/1801 - 05/22/1832)

- Franz Karl, Archiduc d'Autriche (12/17/1802 - 03/08/1878)

- Marie Anne, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (06/08/1804 - 12/28/1858)

- Johann, Archiduc d'Autriche (30/08/1805 - 19/02/1809)

- Amalie Thérèse, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (04/06/1807 - 04/09/1807)

Par Ferdinand III, grand-duc de Toscane et Luisa, princesse de Naples et de Sicile et grande-duchesse de Toscane

- Léopold II, Grand-Duc de Toscane (10/03/1797 - 29/01/1870)

- Maria Luisa, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (30/08/1798 - 15/06/1857)

- Marie-Thérèse, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Reine de Sardaigne (21/03/1801 - 01/12/1855)

Par Charles, archiduc d'Autriche et duc de Teschen

- Marie-Thérèse, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Reine des Deux-Siciles (31/07/1816 - 08/08/1867)

- Albert, Archiduc d'Autriche et Duc de Teschen (08/03/1817 - 02/18/1895)

- Karl Ferdinand, Archiduc d'Autriche (29/07/1818 - 20/11/1874)

- Frédéric Ferdinand, Archiduc d'Autriche (14/05/201821 - 05/10/1847)

- Maria Karoline, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (09/10/1825 - 07/17/1915)

- Wilhelm Franz, Archiduc d'Autriche (21/04/1827 - 29/04/1894)

Par Joseph, Archiduc d'Autriche

- Alexandrine, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (03/08/1801)

- François, Archiduc d'Autriche (14/09/1817 - 19/02/1867)

- Amalie Marie, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (14/09/1817 - 13/02/1842)

- Marie Elisabeth, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (31/07/1820 - 23/08/1820)

- Alexandre, Archiduc d'Autriche (06/06/1825 - 11/12/1837)

- Elisabeth Franciska, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (17/01/1831 - 14/02/1903)

- Joseph Karl Ludwig, Archiduc d'Autriche (02/03/1833 - 13/06/1905)

- Marie Henriette, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Reine de Belgique (23/08/1836 - 19/09/1902)

Par Maria Clementina, archiduchesse d'Autriche et duchesse de Calabre et François Ier, roi des Deux-Siciles

- Maria Carolina, princesse des Deux-Siciles et duchesse de Berry (11/05/1798 - 17/04/2070)

- Ferdinand Francesco, Prince des Deux-Siciles (27/08/1800 - 01/07/1801)

Par Johann, Archiduc d'Autriche

- Franz Ludwig, comte de Merano (03/11/1839 - 03/27/1891)

Par Joseph Johann, Archiduc d'Autriche

- Maria Karolina, Archiduchesse d'Autriche (02/06/1821 - 23/01/1844)

- Maria Adélaïde, Archiduchesse d'Autriche et Reine de Sardaigne (03/06/1822 - 20/01/1855)

- Léopold, Archiduc d'Autriche (06/06/1823 - 24/05/20188)

- Ernest, Archiduc d'Autriche (08/08/1824 - 04/04/1899)

- Sigismond, Archiduc d'Autriche (01/07/1826 - 15/12/1891)

- Rainer Ferdinand, Archiduc d'Autriche (01/11/1827 - 01/27/1913)

- Heinrich, Archiduc d'Autriche (09/05/1828 - 30/11/1891)

- Maximilien, Archiduc d'Autriche (16/01/1830 - 16/03/1839)

Par François Ier, roi des Deux-Siciles

- Louise Charlotte, princesse des Deux-Siciles (24/10/1804 - 29/01/1844)

- Maria Christina, princesse des Deux-Siciles et reine d'Espagne (27/04/1806 - 22/08/1878)

- Ferdinand II, roi des Deux-Siciles (01/12/1810 - 05/22/1859)

- Charles Ferdinand, Prince des Deux-Siciles (11/10/1811 - 22/04/20862)

- Léopold, Prince des Deux-Siciles (22/05/201813 - 04/12/1860)

- Maria Antonia, princesse des Deux-Siciles et grande-duchesse de Toscane (19/12/1814 - 11/07/1898)

- Antonio, Prince des Deux-Siciles (23/09/1816 - 01/12/1843)

- Maria Amalia, princesse des Deux-Siciles (25/02/1818 - 11/06/1857)

- Maria Ferdinanda, princesse des Deux-Siciles (29/02/1820 - 13/01/1861)

- Teresa Christina, princesse des Deux-Siciles et impératrice du Brésil (14/03/1822 - 28/12/1889)

- Luigi Carlo, prince des Deux-Siciles et comte d'Aquila (19/07/1824 - 05/03/1897)

- Francesco, prince des Deux-Siciles et comte de Trapani (13/08/1827 - 24/09/1892)

Par Maria Amalia, princesse de Naples et de Sicile et reine de France

- Ferdinand Phillip, Prince de France et Duc d'Orl&# x00e9ans (09/03/1810 - 07/13/1842)

- Louise, princesse de France et reine de Belgique (04/03/1812 - 10/11/1850)

- Marie Christine, princesse de France et duchesse de W&# x00fcrttemberg (04/12/1813 - 01/06/1839)

- Louis Charles, Prince de France et Duc de Nemours (25/10/1814 - 26/06/1896)

- Françoise d'Orlບns (28/03/1816 - 20/05/201818)

- Clémentine, princesse de France (03/06/1817 - 16/02/1907)

- Francis Ferdinand, Prince de Joinville (14/08/1816 - 16/06//1900)

- Charles, prince de France et duc d'Orléans&# x00e9ans (01/01/1820 - 26/07/1828)

- Henri, Prince de France et Duc d'Aumale (1601/1822 - 05/07/1897)

- Antoine, Prince de France et Duc de Montpensier (31/07/1824 - 02/04/1890)

Par Léopold, prince de Salerne et Maria Clementina, archiduchesse d'Autriche et princesse de Salerne

- Léopold, Prince des Deux-Siciles (25/07/1816 - 12/12/1875)

- Maria Carolina Augusta, princesse des Deux-Siciles et duchesse d'Aumale (26/04/201822 - 06/12/1869)

- Ludovico Carlo, Prince des Deux-Siciles (19/07/1824 - 08/07/1824)

Par Marie-Thérèse, reine de Sardaigne

- Maria Beatrice, princesse de Sardaigne et duchesse de Modène et Reggio (12/06/1792 - 15/09/1840)

- Marie-Thérèse, princesse de Sardaigne et duchesse de Parme (19/09/1803 - 16/07/1879)

- Maria Anna, princesse de Sardaigne et impératrice d'Autriche (19/09/1803 - 04/05/2084)

- Maria Christina, princesse de Sardaigne et reine des Deux-Siciles (14/11/1812 - 21/01/1836)

Par Marie Léopoldine, duchesse de Bavière

- Aloys, Count of Arco-Steppberg (12/06/1808 - 12/10/1891)

- Maximilian, Count of Arco-Zinneberg (12/13/1811 - 11/13/1885)

- Caroline, Countess of Arco-Zinneberg (12/26/1814 - 01/18/1815)

By Franz IV, Duke of Modena and Reggio and Maria Beatrice, Princess of Sardinia and Duchess of Modena and Reggio

- Maria Theresa, Archduchess of Austria-Este and Countess of Chambord (07/14/1817 - 03/25/1886)

- Franz V, Archduke of Austria-Este and Duke of Modena and Reggio (06/01/1819 - 11/20/1875)

- Ferdinand Karl, Archduke of Austria-Este (07/20/1821 - 12/15/1849)

- Maria Beatrice, Archduchess of Austria-Este (07/14/1824 - 03/18/1906)

By Marie Thérèse Charlotte, Queen of France

- Charlotte, Princess of France (06/23/1813 - 12/19/1883)

By Maria Anna, Grand Duchess of Tuscany and Leopold II, Grand Duke of Tuscany

- Maria Karoline Augusta, Archduchess of Austria (11/19/1822 - 10/05/1841)

- Augusta Ferdinande, Archduchess of Austria and Princess Regent of Bavaria (04/01/1825 - 04/26/1864)

- Marie Maximiliane, Archduchess of Austria (01/09/1827 - 05/18/1834)

- Marie Auguste, Princess of Saxony (01/22/1827 - 10/08/1857)

- Albert, King of Saxony (04/23/1828 - 06/19/1902)

- Elisabeth, Princess of Saxony and Duchess of Genoa (02/04/1830 - 08/14/1912)

- Frederick Augustus, Prince of Saxony (04/05/1831 - 05/12/1847)

- Geoge, King of Saxony (08/08/1832 - 10/15/1904)

- Maria Ludovika, Princess of Saxony (08/16/1834 - 03/01/1862)

- Anne Marie Maximiliane, Princess of Saxony (01/04/1836 - 02/10/1859)

- Margaret Karoline, Princess of Saxony and Archduchess of Austria (05/24/1840 - 09/15/1858)

- Sophie Marie, Princess of Saxony and Duchess in Bavaria (03/15/1845 - 03/09/1867)

By Charles II, Duke of Parma and King of Etruria

- Luisa, Princess of Parma (10/29/1821 - 09/08/1823)

- Charles III, Duke of Parma (01/14/1823 - 03/27/1854)

By Marie Louise, Archduchess of Austria and Empress of France

- Napoleon II, King of Rome (03/20/1811 - 07/22/1832)

- Albertine of Montenuovo, Countess of Fontanelatto (05/01/1817 - 12/26/1867)

- William Albert, Prince of Montenuovo (08/08/1819 - 04/07/1895)

By Caroline Josepha Leopoldine, Archduchess of Austria and Empress of Brazil

- Maria II, Queen of Portugal (04/04/1819 - 11/15/1853)

- Miguel, Prince of Beira (26/04/1820)

- John Carlos, Prince of Beira (03/06/1821 - 02/04/1822)

- Januaria, Princess of Brazil and Countess of Aquila (03/11/1822 - 03/13/1901)

- Paula, Princess of Brazil (02/17/1823 - 01/16/1823)

- Francisca, Princess of Brazil and Princess of Joinville (08/02/1824 - 03/27/1898)

- Pedro II, Emperor of Brazil (12/02/1825 - 12/05/1891)

By Franz Karl, Archduke of Austria

- Franz Joseph I, Emperor of Austria (08/18/1830 - 11/21/1916)

- Maximilian I, Emperor of Mexico (07/06/1832 - 06/19/1867)

- Karl Ludwig, Archduke of Austria (07/30/1833 - 05/19/1896)

- Maria Anna, Archduchess of Austria (10/27/1835 - 02/05/1840)

- Ludwig, Archduke of Austria (05/15/1842 - 01/18/1919)

By Leopold II, Grand Duke of Tuscany and Maria Antonia, Princess of the Two-Sicilies and Grand Duchess of Tuscany

- Maria Isabella, Archduchess of Austria and Countess of Trapani (05/21/1834 - 07/14/1901)

- Ferdinand IV, Grand Duke of Tuscany (06/10/1835 - 01/17/1908)

- Maria Theresa, Archduchess of Austria (06/29/1836 - 08/05/1838)

- Maria Christina, Archduchess of Austria (02/05/1838 - 09/01/1849)

- Karl, Archduke of Austria (04/30/1839 - 01/18/1892)

- Maria Anna, Archduchess of Austria (06/09/1840 - 08/13/1841)

- Rainer, Archduke of Austria (05/01/1842 - 08/13/1844)

- Maria Luisa, Archduchess of Austria and Princess of Isenburg-B࿍ingen (10/31/1845 - 08/27/1917)

- Ludwig, Archduke of Austria (08/04/1847 - 10/12/1915)

- Johann, Archduke of Austria (11/25/1852 - ?)

By Maria Theresa, Archduchess of Austria and Queen of Sardinia

- Victor Amadeus II, King of Italy (03/14/1820 - 01/09/1878)

- Ferdiand, Duke of Genoa (11/15/1822 - 02/10/1855)

By Maria Theresa, Archduchess of Austria and Queen of the Two-Sicilies and Ferdinand II, King of the Two-Sicilies

- Ludovico, Prince of the Two-Sicilies and Count of Trani (08/01/1838 - 06/08/1886)

- Alberto, Prince of the Two-Sicilies and Count of Castrogiovanni (09/17/1839 - 07/12/1844)

- Alfonso, Prince of the Two-Sicilies and Count of Caserta (03/28/1841 - 05/26/1934)

- Maria Annunciata, Princess of the Two-Sicilies and Archduchess of Austria (03/24/1843 - 05/04/1871)

- Maria Immaculata, Princess of the Two-Sicilies and Archduchess of Austria (04/14/1844 - 02/18/1899)

- Gaetano, Prince of the Two-Sicilies and Count of Girgenti (01/12/1846 - 11/26/1871)

- Giuseppe, Prince of the Two-Sicilies and Count of Lucera (03/04/1848 - 09/28/1851)

- Maria, Princess of the Two-Sicilies and Duchess of Parma (08/21/1849 - 09/29/1882)

- Vicenzo, Prince of the Two Sicileis and Count of Melazzo (04/26/1851 - 10/13/1854)

- Pasquale, Prince of the Two-Sicileis and Count of Bari (09/15/1852 - 12/21/1904)

- Maria Louisa, Princess of the Two-Sicilies and Countess of Bardi (01/21/1855 - 02/23/1874)

- Gennaro, Prince of the Two-Sicileis and Count of Caltagirone (02/28/1857 - 08/13/1867)


Maria Theresa

Queen of Hungary and Bohemia, Archduchess of Austria, Roman-German Empress, born 1717 died 1780.

I. FROM 1717 TO 1745

Maria Theresa was born on 13 May, 1717, the daughter of the German Emperor Charles VI (1711-1740) and his wife Elizabeth von Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel. Her elder brother Leopold had died a short time before and the emperor was left without male issue. As early as 1713 he had promulgated a family law, the Pragmatic Sanction, by virtue of which the possessions of the Hapsburgs were to remain undivided and, in default of a male heir, fall to his eldest daughter. He was constantly negotiating with foreign powers to secure their recognition of this Pragmatic Sanction. Maria Theresa was endowed with brilliant gifts, with beauty, amiability and intelligence, and was universally admired as a girl. On 14 February, 1736, she married Duke Francis Stephen of Lorraine, who by the Peace of Vienna, in 1738, received Tuscany instead of Lorraine. Charles VI died unexpectedly on 20 October, 1740, at the age of 56, and Maria Theresa came into possession of the territories of Austria without having any political training. Her husband was an amiable man, but of mediocre mental endowments and consequently of little assistance to her. Charles, moreover, left the internal affairs of his monarchy, particularly the finances and the army, in a lamentable condition. His family regarded the future with misgiving and perplexity. Maria Theresa was the first to recover her self-possession and to appreciate the problems before her. On the very day of her father's death, she received the homage of Privy Councillors and nobility as Queen of Hungary, Queen of Bohemia, and Archduchess of Austria, and at her first cabinet meeting expressed her determination to uphold to the full every right she had inherited. All admired her firmness, dignity and strength of spirit. Certainly they were few who believed she would succeed.

At Vienna men were familiarizing themselves with the idea "of becoming Bavarian". The Elector Charles Albert of Bavaria, who had never recognized the Pragmatic Sanction, laid claim to Austria as the descendant of a daughter of Emperor Ferdinand I (1556-1564), and referred to a testament of 1547, in which mention was made however not of the failure of "male" but of "legitimate" issue. He secured the support of France, which induced Spain and Saxony also to lay claims to the succession. A greater peril appeared in a quarter where it was least expected: King Frederick II of Prussia laid claim to Silesia. He promised to help Maria Theresa, provided she ceded to him Jägerndorf, Brieg, Wohlau and Leignitz, to which he pretended to have hereditary claims. Otherwise he would ally himself with France, Bavaria and Saxony and make war on her. He wanted, like a good merchant, to take advantage of the opportunity, and proposed a deal by which Maria Theresa and himself could settle the account between them. For in case of her acceptance of his proposal, Maria Theresa would have been spared the war arising out of the Austrian succession. Maria Theresa was, however, as convinced of her rights as she was determined to enforce them by action. That Prussia had a right to expect concessions from Austria, since, in 1686, indemnification had been promised her for the Duchies of Silesia, Maria Theresa did not take into account. The king hastily invaded Silesia and dispatched a disagreeable, conceited courtier as his representative. Thus the first Silesian war came about (1740-1742). Frederick II gained a great victory at Mollwitz (10 April, 1741). On 4 June he allied himself with France which now gave its support to the Elector of Bavaria, who aspired to the imperial dignity and won most of the electors to his side. Maria Theresa vainly strove to secure the crown for her spouse Francis Stephen. In her hereditary lands she found her principal support against the threats of her foes. The energetic bearing of the princess roused general enthusiasm. When in Pressburg she appealed to the chivalry of the Hungarians, the nobles cried out that they were ready to give their blood and life for their queen (September, 1741). However, as the Bavarians, French and Saxons were advancing against her, she was compelled to arrange a truce with Prussia in order to avoid danger from that side.

Charles Albert of Bavaria with the French had occupied Passau on 31 July and Linz on 15 September, and had been acknowledged by the Upper Austrian Diet. On 26 November he surprised Prague with Saxon assistance, and had himself crowned King of Bohemia on 7 December. On 24 January, 1742 he was also elected Roman emperor as Charles VII. His success however was short-lived. The queen's forces had already made an entry into his own country. Still, what was most needful was to rid herself of her most dangerous antagonist. Frederick II had broken the truce, had entered Moravia "to pluck the Moravian hens", and won a victory at Chotusitz (17 May, 1742). Maria Theresa concluded the peace of Breslau (6 June, 1742) and ceded to him Silesia except Teschen, Troppau and Jägerndorf. She now turned against the Bavarians and the French. Bohemia was retaken and Maria Theresa crowned queen (May, 1743). Her ally, King George II of England, marched forward with the "pragmatic army" and defeated the French at Dettingen (27 June, 1743). The emperor became a fugitive in Frankfort. His rival's advantageous position inspired Frederick II with the fear that he might again lose his recent conquests in Silesia. He therefore again allied himself with France and the emperor and broke the peace by invading Bohemia. But as the French failed to send the promised army and Charles VII died on 20 January, 1745, the King of Prussia was compelled to rely upon his own forces and to retreat to Silesia. The Bavarians made peace with Austria and in Dresden (May, 1745) Bavaria, Saxony and Austria agreed to reduce Prussia to its former condition as the Electorate of Brandenburg. The Prussian victories at Hohenfriedberg, Soor-Trautenau and Kesselsdorf (June, September and December, 1745) overthrew the allies, and the second Silesian war had thus to be settled by the Peace of Dresden, where Prussia was confirmed in its possession of Silesia. Meanwhile Maria Theresa's husband, Francis Stephen, was chosen emperor on 4 October, 1745. Prussia acknowledged him. He took the name of Francis I (1745-1765). Thus the high-spirited woman had obtained what it was possible for her to obtain the imperial dignity remained in her family, and the pragmatic sanction was practically confirmed. War continued to be waged in the Netherlands and Italy, but this conflict was no longer formidable. The conclusion of peace at Aix la Chapelle, in 1748, put an end to the war of the Austrian succession. The relations of the European Powers were not vitally altered. What was important was that Prussia, though not recognized as a great power, had to be tolerated as such.

II. THE PEACE INTERVAL (1746-1756)

Directly after the Peace of Dresden the empress applied herself to the reform of the administration. In a memorandum dated 1751 she herself says: "Since the Peace of Dresden it has been my sole aim to acquaint myself with the condition and strength of my states, and then honestly to become acquainted with the abuses existing in them and in the Dicasteriis (courts of justice) where everything was found to be in the utmost confusion". The initiative came from the queen herself. Her assistant was Count Frederick William von Haugwitz. Finances and the army were in sorest need of reorganization. The greatest necessity was the raising of money needed for a standing army of 108,000 men in the hereditary states and in Hungary. For this purpose 14 millions of gulden were required. The diets were to raise them by regular grants for a number of years, and in return would be free from all taxes in kind. The rights of the several diets were thus restricted for the benefit of the country. Against this opposition arose. Maria Theresa, however, came forth energetically in support of the authority of the government and by her personal influence carried out the project. For the present the people of the several countries made grants for a period of ten years, and when these had passed the new conditions had become habitual and become settled. To the credit of the empress it ought not to be forgotten that in the levying of this contribution for the army she did not permit any oppression of the working class. A much more important measure from the point of view of the well-being of the state was the separation of administration and justice. The Austrian and Bohemian court chancelleries, hitherto separate, were combined into a single supreme administrative office. On the other hand, for the administration of the law, the supreme court was established. In 1753 the empress appointed a commission to compile a new civil code. It was only in 1811, however, that it was published. During her reign (1768) the "Constitutio criminalis Theresiana" was also promulgated for criminal law. Up to that time a heterogeneous procedure prevailed in the different countries. Centralization was also aided by the creation of new district officials who were to carry out the measures of the government in the several countries. As they had often to protect the subjects against the oppression of the lords, the people became much more devoted to the government.

For the promotion of trade and industry a bureau of commerce was established in 1746, but its development was hindered by the internal duties. The oversea trade greatly increased. The army was improved, the Prussian army being taken as a model in 1752 a military academy, and in 1754 an academy of engineering science were established. The empress also gave her attention to education and especially to the middle and higher schools. The gymnasia received a new curriculum in 1752. The medical faculty of the University of Vienna, after being long neglected, was raised to greater efficiency. The legal faculty also became a strong body. Moreover, the empress founded the academy of the nobles (Theresianum) and the academy for Oriental languages as well as the archives for the imperial family, court and state, which since 1749, had been a model of its kind. In her dealings with Catholicism the empress adopted the principle "cujus regio, ejus religio", and defended unity of faith in the State not only for Christian and religious, but also for political reasons. The Jews were not regarded by her with favour. After 1751 Protestants were not permitted to sell their property and emigrate, but all, who declined solemnly to become Catholics, were required to emigrate to Transylvania where the Evangelical worship was permitted. "Transmigration" took the place of "emigration". Later she came to the conclusion that compulsion ought to be avoided, but that those who had gone astray should be led to conversion by argument and careful instruction. At court she was strict in regard to attendance at church, frequent communion, and fasting. She broke up the Freemason lodges by force in 1743.

III. THE SEVEN YEARS' WAR (1756-1763)

Maria Theresa would have carried out many more useful measures had she not again turned to foreign politics. But she was irresistibly impelled to punish Prussia and to reconquer Silesia. Her court and state chancellor, Count Kaunitz (since 1753) recognized at times that it was better to come to an agreement with Prussia, but he had not the courage to oppose the empress's designs. The opportunity of taking revenge on Prussia came when England and France made war on each other in North America and looked about for European allies. In 1755 England received the assurance of aid from Russia. To make Russia's assistance useless and in fact to paralyze her, Frederick the Great made the Westminster Treaty of Neutrality in January, 1756 with England, by which the two Powers bound themselves to prevent their respective allies, namely France and Russia, from attacking the territory of the Confederates. This allowed the old rivals, Austria and France, to combine. Maria Theresa was annoyed that England had joined Prussia, and France was disgusted with Prussia's independent policy, for she had reckoned on Frederick's help. Thus France and Austria made the defensive treaty of Versailles on 1 May, 1756. As to the origin of the Seven Years' War, whether it was an offensive or defensive war on the part of Frederick the Great, this has been the subject of much debate. It must be granted that Austria called upon France to participate actively in a war against Prussia, and in return had offered concessions in the Low Countries. She had also come to a similar agreement with Russia. The new war was an unfortunate undertaking. The prospects of regaining Silesia were not great, and the hope of weakening Prussia was an absolute chimera. Besides, France had no great interest in weakening Prussia, and her active participation was doubtful from the beginning. In Russia the death of the empress and a consequent change of policy was imminent.

Frederick the Great foresaw the intentions of Maria Theresa in good time, and anticipated her before the preparations of his enemy were completed. As the empress made an evasive reply or no reply at all to his enquiries as to her aims he entered Saxony on 28 August, 1756, and Bohemia in September and defeated the Austrians on 1 October, at Lobositz. The attack, which was clearly a breach of the peace, brought about the immediate conclusion of the alliances. Frederick made an alliance with England in January, 1757. France and Austria came to an agreement (on 1 May, 1757) in regard to the partition of Prussia, after Austria had come to an understanding with Russia in January. Frederick had to defend himself on every side. He was on the offensive only in 1757 and 1758. Later he had to confine himself to acting on the defensive. The Seven Years' War was a long struggle in which fortune alternately favoured either side. In contrast with Frederick the Great's victories at Prague (6 May, 1757), at Rossbach (5 November, 1757), at Leuthen (15 December, 1757), at Torgau (3 November, 1760) stand his serious defeats at Kolin (18 June, 1757), at Hochkirch (14 October, 1758), and at Kunersdorf (12 August, 1759). In the West the allies effected very little against the English. In the East on the other hand, Frederick seemed on the point of succumbing (1761). The English did not renew the agreement to subsidize Frederick. His opponents, it is true, were equally exhausted financially , as well as weary and disappointed. The decisive turn of events was brought about by the death of the Russian Empress Elizabeth (1762). Her successor, Peter III, an admirer of Frederick's, made peace with him and even sought his alliance and sent him 20,000 men. When Peter lost his throne and life, the Empress Catharine, it is true, withdrew from the Prussian alliance, but the last successes of Frederick were largely due to the Russians (Burkersdorf, 21 July Freiberg, 29 October). As France and England concluded peace in Paris on 10 February, 1763, the empress was compelled to do the same. The Peace of Hubertsburg (15 February, 1763) restored to each belligerent the possessions he had held before the war. But apart from the loss in men and treasure, the war injured the policy of the empress and Count Kaunitz by strengthening the position of Prussia as a great power. Frederick the Great had maintained Prussia's power in a severe ordeal.

IV. THE EVENING OF LIFE (1763-1780)

The empress had still seventeen years to rule. However, this period no longer exclusively bore the impress of her personality. She did not indeed give up the reins, but she could not make headway against the passionate impulses of her son Joseph II, or entirely carry out her own views. Thus the Theresian period gradually became the "Josephine" period. On 27 March, 1763, Joseph was chosen as Roman king. Francis I, to whom Theresa was really devoted, and to whom she had borne sixteen children (eleven daughters and five sons), died suddenly, fifty-seven years old (1765). Joseph II became emperor (1765-1790), and in Austria co-regent with his mother. To her ambitious son, brimful of projects, the liberal-minded autocrat who with the noblest intentions was able to effect nothing, she could not transmit her political talent. In many respects their views differed, particularly on religious affairs. Joseph had entirely different ideas on the treatment of non-Catholics. Indeed even under Maria Theresa the politico-ecclesiastical policy known as "Josephinism" had its rise, though the empress was a pious woman and attended strictly to her religious duties. Papal Bulls were only to be made public with the consent of the government, and intercourse with Rome was to be conducted through the Foreign Office. Festivals were reduced in number. The jurisdiction of the Church over the laity ceased, as well as the immunity from taxes enjoyed by the clergy. The number of monasteries was restricted. The Jesuits lost their standing as confessors at the court, as well as the direction of the theological and philosophical faculties at the University of Vienna, and were confined to the lower schools.

The empress maintained a neutral attitude towards the dissolution of the Jesuit Order. Her fortune was devoted to the care of souls and to education. In foreign politics a conflict of views between mother and son arose on the occasion of the first partition of Poland. The empress not only doubted that the acquisition of Polish territory would be an advantage, but she also recoiled from doing wrong to others. At last she yielded to the pressure of her son and Count Kaunitz, but later she often regretted having given her assent. Nor did she approve of the War of the Bavarian Succession, clearly foreseeing that Prussia would interfere. She could not sufficiently thank Providence for the fortunate issue of the affair. In the last ten years of her life she developed an unremitting activity on behalf of the improvement of the primary schools. The excellent Abbot Felbiger, the father of the Catholic primary schools of Germany, was summoned from Silesia. She also tried to improve the condition of the peasantry, and to put an end to the oppression of the landlords. When she sought to abolish the serfdom in Bohemia she encountered unexpected opposition from the emperor, whom the landlords had caused to hesitate.

She was tireless in her care for the welfare and education of her children. When they were at a distance she carried on a busy correspondence with them and gave them wise instruction and advice. Marie Antoinette, the Dauphiness, and afterwards Queen, of France, with her light and thoughtless temperament, her frivolous disregard of dignity, her love of pleasure and her extravagance, caused her much anxiety. Nearest to her heart was her daughter Maria Christina who was happily married to Prince Albert of Saxony-Teschen. Death was made hard for the courageous woman. On 15 October, 1780, she made her will and in it directed, which was characteristic of her, besides generous bequests to the poor, the granting a month's pay to the soldiers. On 8 November she was present at a hunt and appears to have caught a cold in the pouring rain. Night and day she suffered from a racking cough and choking fits, nevertheless she was but little in bed, but busied herself by putting her papers in order, and consoling her children. On the 25th she received Communion on the 28th extreme unction was given to her, and with her own hand she put certain bequests on paper, among them, again, characteristic of her disposition, 100,000 florins for the funds of the normal schools. during the night of 29 November, 1780, she died, at the age of sixty-three years.

She was the last and beyond doubt the greatest of the Hapsburgs. She is not only, as Sonnenfels described her as early as 1780, the restorer, but rather the foundress of the Austrian monarchy, which with a skillful hand she built up out of loose parts into a well rivetted whole, while in all essential respects she left the administration radically improved. In her personal character she was a thorough German, always proud of her German descent and nationality, intelligent, affable, cheerful, pleasant, fond of music, and at the same time thoroughly moral and deeply religious. In her character were united, as v. Zwiedineck-Südenhorst says, all that was amiable and honourable, all that was worthy and winning, all the strength and gentleness of which the Austrian character is capable. Klopstock was right when he appraised her as "the greatest of her line because she was the most human", and even Frederick the Great recognized her merits when he said: "She has done honour to the throne and to her sex I have warred with her but I have never been her enemy."

VON ARNETH, Geschichte Maria Theresias, I-X (Vienna, 1863-1879) WOLF AND ZWIEDINECK-SÜDENHORST, Oesterreich unter Maria Theresia, Josef II. und Leopold II. (Berlin, 1884) VON ARNETH in the Allg. deutsche Biographie, XX (Leipzig, 1884), p. 340-365 KHUEN in WETZER AND WELTE, Kirchenlex., 2nd ed., VIII (Freiburg, 1891), 777-786 V. ZWIEDINECK-SÜDENHORST, Maria Theresia (Bielefeld and Leipzig, 1905) The Cambridge Modern History, vol. VI (Cambridge, 1909).


Maria Theresa, Archduchess of Austria, and Queen of Hungary, Croatia, and Bohemia

Maria Theresa Walburga Amalia Christina, Archduchess of Austria was born at the Hofburg Palace in Vienna, Austria on May 13, 1717, the second and eldest surviving child of Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI and Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel. Her only brother died several weeks before she was born and her two younger siblings were sisters. The fact that Maria Theresa’s father did not have a male heir caused many problems. For more information see the Pragmatic Sanction of 1713 and the War of the Austrian Succession.
Maria Theresa married Francis Stephen, Duke of Lorraine on February 12, 1736, in the Augustinian Church in Vienna. Throughout his reign, Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI expected to have a male heir and never really prepared Maria Theresa for her future role as sovereign. Upon her father’s death in 1740, Maria Theresa became Queen of Hungary, Croatia, and Bohemia in her own right. She was unable to become the sovereign of the Holy Roman Empire because she was female. Maria Theresa’s right to succeed to her father was the cause of the eight-year-long War of the Austrian Succession. The Habsburgs had been elected Holy Roman Emperors since 1438, but in 1742 Holy Roman Emperor Charles VII from the German House of Wittelsbach was elected. He died in 1745 and via a treaty Maria Theresa arranged for her husband Francis Stephen, Duke of Lorraine to be elected Holy Roman Emperor. Despite the snub, Maria Theresa wielded the real power.

Maria Theresa and Francis Stephen at their wedding breakfast, by Martin van Meytens Credit – Wikipedia

Maria Theresa and Francis Stephen had 16 children. Their youngest daughter was Queen Marie Antoinette of France, wife of King Louis XVI.

Maria Theresa with her family, 1754, by Martin van Meytens Credit – Wikipedia

Even though he had 16 children with his wife, Francis was not faithful during his marriage and had a number of affairs. Despite being the nominal Holy Roman Emperor, he was content to leave the act of reigning to his wife. Francis died suddenly in 1765 at the age of 56 in his carriage while returning from the opera. His son Joseph succeeded him as Holy Roman Emperor although Maria Theresa continued to wield the real power.
In 1767, Maria Theresa had smallpox and after that, her health deteriorated. She died on November 29, 1780, at Hofburg Palace, after a reign of 40 years and surrounded by her surviving children. Maria Theresa was the last of the House of Habsburg. The Imperial House thereafter was the House of Habsburg-Lorraine. Her son Joseph, Holy Roman Emperor since his father’s death, succeeded his mother as King of Hungary, Croatia, and Bohemia. Maria Theresa was buried alongside her husband in a magnificent tomb in the Imperial Crypt in Vienna.

Tomb of Maria Theresa and Holy Roman Emperor Franz I Photo Credit – Susan Flantzer


Waiter, I'd like a Maria Theresa please!

Those ordering a "Maria Theresa" at a Vienna coffee house can expect a strong double coffee, topped with whipped cream and containing a shot of orange liquor. To this day there are some 150 traditional coffee houses in the Austrian capital, with wooden floors, simple chairs and plush sofas. In 2011, Viennese coffee house culture was officially declared part of the UNESCO World Heritage list.

Author: Frederike Müller (sc)

First of all, Maria Theresa (1717-1780) was never actually crowned empress. As the only female ruler in the House of Habsburg, she was the Archduchess of Austria and the Queen of Hungary and Bohemia.

Maria Theresa was only 23 years old when she ascended to the Austrian throne in 1740. Though the official ruler was actually her husband, Francis I, she governed the Habsburg monarchy single-handedly.

When her husband became the emperor of the Holy Roman Empire in 1945, Maria Theresa acquired the title of empress, as suits the wife of an emperor. The only female sovereign in the history of the House of Habsburg became pivotal during the era of enlightened absolutism, which served as a precursor to the Enlightenment and saw rulers in Europe increasingly valuing rationalism and supporting human rights.

The beautiful muse, Maria Theresa

No other woman of her time was painted as often as Maria Theresa, which not only had to do with her position of power. Her contemporaries described her as a very beautiful woman, especially when she was young. She had a round face, slightly reddish blonde hair, large, vivid, light blue eyes, and an upbeat expression - that's how a Prussian emissary at the Vienna court described her. However, he also stated: "After going through childbirth numerous times and filling out, she has become somewhat sluggish."

Maria Theresa is featured at Madame Tussauds in Vienna

The darlings of the empress

That, however, didn't affect the relationship between Maria Theresa and her husband, Francis I. Their marriage was to guarantee a balance of power within the spectrum of European politics. When they married in 1736, they already knew each other well, as the groom had lived at the Vienna court for a long time.

They not only appreciated each other, but felt a deep love for one another - and had 16 children together. The marriage was considered a happy one, although Francis I was said to have had numerous affairs. When the emperor died unexpectedly in 1765 after 29 years of marriage, Maria Theresa wrote: "I lost a husband, a friend, the only object of my love."

She took care of her 11 daughters and five sons, who were given a strict and comprehensive education. Only 10 of the 16 children reached adulthood, among them two future emperors, an elector of Cologne and Marie Antoinette, the future wife of King Louis XVI of France.

Maria Theresa's biggest foe

Maria Theresa's first major challenge came shortly after she had ascended the throne: Other European rulers started making territorial claims after she had assumed authority over the House of Hapsburg in 1740. Among them was the King of Prussia, Frederick II, who triggered the Silesian Wars and with them the War of the Austrian Succession.

When the latter ended in 1748, Maria Theresa had lost the region of Silesia forever. Furthermore, she was forced to give up the duchies of Parma and Piacenza. She did succeed, however, in keeping all other territories of the Habsburg Empire. Maria Theresa gained a great deal of respect by asserting her power in trying times. King Frederick II of Prussia remained her biggest enemy. In her view, he was a "monster" and a "miserable king."

Comprehensive state reforms

Maria Theresa was one of the most frequently painted women of her time

It's quite likely that Maria Theresa, who called herself Roman Empress from 1745 onwards, actually admired the Prussian king in secret. After all, she carried out long-term reforms that mirrored those made in Prussia, which were marked to some extent by the spirit of enlightened absolutism.

She doubled the size of the army, reformed the military and the judiciary, and established a high court. She also set up new structures in the educational system with the objective of introducing compulsory schooling, and standardized measurements and weights.

The capital city Vienna got a facelift and the stock exchange (Boerse) and Burgtheater were built. Streets in the city were paved, and the Schönbrunn Palace, originally a hunting lodge, was enlarged and transformed into a prestigious landmark. It became Maria Theresa's favorite palace.

Faithful and intolerant

In some regards, the conservative Catholic ruler applied a strict zero tolerance policy. She had no sympathy for non-Catholics. Under her rule, Protestants were even persecuted and expelled to be resettled in thinly populated regions of what is now Romania.

She also displayed no tolerance for Jews. Roughly four years after she had ascended to the throne, she expelled 20,000 Jews from Prague and other parts of Bohemia in 1744. The monarch remained intolerant until the end of her life.

Maria Theresa, Francis I, and their children in 1754

During her entire life, the devout Catholic showed no tolerance at all towards immorality. She went so far as to introduce a chastity court that charged prostitutes, adulterers, homosexuals, sodomites and even sexual intercourse between members of different religions. Depending on the crime, the sentence could include whipping, deportation or even the death penalty.

Someone who was never charged by the chastity court was her own adulterous husband. From 1765 onwards, the handling of what was seen as immorality became less strict. After the death of her husband, her son Joseph II became the Holy Roman Emperor and a co-regent of the House of Habsburg. The relationship between mother and son was difficult and full of conflicts: Joseph followed the humanistic principles of Enlightenment, whereas his mother partially rejected some of these concepts as anti-Catholic.

Austria celebrates its empress

Maria Theresa died of pneumonia on November 29, 1780, at the age of 63 in her hometown, Vienna. The most enigmatic regent of the House of Habsburg has remained unforgotten until today.

Starting on March 15, Austria is celebrating her 300th anniversary of her birth on May 13, 1717, with an exhibition taking place in four different locations. The show "300 Years Maria Theresa: Strategist - Mother - Reformer" looks at all aspects of the ruler's life, including her family life and political achievements, as well as the aftermath of her rule. The exhibition will end on November 29, 2017, the anniversary of her death.

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