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European Royals

Archduchess Maria of Austria has died

Archduchess Maria of Austria has died. This was announced earlier this week by the Habsburg family. Archduchess Maria of Austria died 20 July at the age of 82 in her home in the Austrian capital of Vienna. She was, on her mother’s side, a second cousin of Queen Paola of Belgium.

Funeral arrangements for the Archduchess have not yet been announced.

Her full name and title were Princess Maria Aloisia Josephine Consolata Immaculata Benedicta Theresia Antonia Johanna Carla Conrada Leonharda of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg. She was born a Princess in the House of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg on 6 November 1935 in Munich. Her father was Karl II, 8th Prince of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg, and her mother was Carolina dei Conti Rignon. When Princess Maria married Archduke Joseph Árpád of Austria in 1956, she became Archduchess of Austria and a member of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Kreuzwertheim Castle, residence of the princes of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Freudenberg since 1736. Photo: Tilman2007 via Wikimedia Commons.

Archduchess Maria and Archduke Joseph Árpád of Austria had eight children. She is survived by seven of her children and their families. The couple’s first child, Archduke Joseph Karl, lived for only one day in August 1957. Her other children are:

  • Archduchess Monika-Ilona.
  • Archduke Joseph Karl.
  • Archduchess Maria Christine.
  • Archduke Andreas-Augustinus.
  • Archduchess Alexandra Lydia.
  • Archduke Nicolaus Franziskus.
  • Archduke Johannes Jacobus.

The House of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg can be traced back to the Holy Roman Empire. It was formed from the counties of Löwenstein and Wertheim. The current monarchs of Belgium, Luxembourg, and Liechtenstein, as well as the pretenders to the thrones of Portugal, Italy (Naples branch), Bavaria, and Austria–Hungary are from the House of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg.

Arms of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg. Photo: Wappenmaler 18. Jahrhundert – Webseite Fürst zu Löwenstein via Wikimedia Commons.

When neither Emperor Joseph I nor Emperor Charles VI produced a son and heir, the Pragmatic Sanction of the House of Habsburg in 1713 left the throne to their unborn daughter, Maria Theresa. In 1736 Emperor Charles arranged her marriage to Francis of Lorraine. This marked the new House of Habsburg-Lorraine. The Habsburg-Lorraine dynastic union survived the War of the Austrian Succession.

Apart from the core Habsburg dominions, including the triple crowns of Austria, Hungary, and Bohemia, several junior branches of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine reigned in the Italian duchies of Tuscany (until 1860), Parma (until 1847) and Modena (until 1859). Another member of the house, Archduke Maximilian of Austria, was Emperor of Mexico (1863–67).

About author

Senior Europe Correspondent Oskar Aanmoen has a master in military and political history of the Nordic countries. He has written six books on historical subjects and more than 1.500 articles for Royal Central. He has also interview both Serbian and Norwegian royals. Aanmoen is based in Oslo, Norway.