House of Habsburg



Cognatic:

The House of Habsburg (/ˈhæpsbɜːrɡ/; German: [ˈhaːpsbʊʁk]; alternatively spelled Hapsburg in English; German: Haus Habsburg, Spanish: Casa de Habsburgo, Hungarian: Habsburg-család), also House of Austria (German: Haus Österreich, Spanish: Casa de Austria),[3] was one of the most prominent royal houses of Europe in the 2nd millennium.

The house takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built in the 1020s in present-day Switzerland by Radbot of Klettgau, who named his fortress Habsburg. His grandson Otto II was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "Count of Habsburg" to his title. In 1273, Count Radbot's seventh-generation descendant Rudolph of Habsburg was elected King of the Romans. Taking advantage of the extinction of the Babenbergs and of his victory over Ottokar II of Bohemia at the battle on the Marchfeld in 1278, he subsequently moved the family's power base to Vienna, where the Habsburgs ruled until 1918.

The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs from 1440 until their extinction in the male line in 1740 and, after the death of Francis I, from 1765 until its dissolution in 1806. The house also produced kings of Bohemia, Hungary, Croatia, Spain, Portugal and Galicia-Lodomeria, with their respective colonies; rulers of several principalities in the Low Countries and Italy; and in the 19th century, emperors of Austria and of Austria-Hungary as well as one emperor of Mexico. The family split several times into parallel branches, most consequentially in the mid-16th century between its Spanish and Austrian branches following the abdication of Charles V. Although they ruled distinct territories, the different branches nevertheless maintained close relations and frequently intermarried.

The house of Habsburg still exists and owns the Austrian branch of the Order of the Golden Fleece and the Imperial and Royal Order of Saint George. As of early 2021, the head of the family is Karl von Habsburg.

The origins of Habsburg Castle's name 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.[4][5][6]

The Habsburg name was not continuously used by the family members, since they often emphasized their more prestigious princely titles. The dynasty was thus long known as the "house of Austria". Complementarily, in some circumstances the family members were identified by their place of birth. Charles V was known in his youth after his birthplace as Charles of Ghent. When he became king of Spain he was known as Charles of Spain, and after he was elected emperor, as Charles V (in French, Charles Quint).

In Spain, the dynasty was known as the Casa de Austria, including illegitimate sons such as John of Austria and John Joseph of Austria. The arms displayed in their simplest form were those of Austria, which the Habsburgs had made their own, at times impaled with the arms of the Duchy of Burgundy (ancient).

After Maria Theresa married Duke Francis Stephen of Lorraine, the idea of "Habsburg" as associated with ancestral Austrian rulership was used to show that the old dynasty continued as did all its inherited rights. When Francis I became Emperor of Austria, he adopted the old shield of Habsburg in his personal arms, together with Austria and Lorraine. This also reinforced the "Germanness" of the (French-speaking) Austrian Emperor and his claim to rule in Germany, not least against the Prussian Kings. Some younger sons who had no prospects of the throne were given the personal title of "count of Habsburg".

The surname of more recent members of the family such as Otto von Habsburg and Karl von Habsburg is taken to be "von Habsburg" or more completely "von Habsburg-Lothringen". Princes and members of the house use the tripartite arms adopted in the 18th century by Francis Stephen.

Timeline

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 forthwith farther back as the medieval Adalrich, Duke of Alsace, from the Etichonids from which Habsburg derives. His grandson Radbot of Klettgau founded the Habsburg Castle. That castle was the family seat during most of the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.

The Habsburgs expanded their influence through arranged marriages and incestuous relations with family royalty 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.[7][8]

By the second half of the 13th century, count Rudolph IV (1218–1291) had become an influential territorial lord in the area between the Vosges Mountains and Lake Constance. On 1 October 1273, he was elected as a compromise candidate as King of the Romans and received the name Rudolph I of Germany.[7] He then led a coalition against king Ottokar II of Bohemia who had taken advantage of the Great Interregnum in order to expand southwards, taking over the respective inheritances of the Babenberg (Austria, Styria, Savinja) and of the Spanheim (Carinthia and Carniola). In 1278, Rudolph and his allies defeated and killed Ottokar at the Battle of Marchfeld, and the lands he had acquired reverted to the German crown. With the Georgenberg Pact of 1286, Rudolph secured for his family the duchies of Austria and Styria. The southern portions of Ottokar's former realm, Carinthia, Carniola, and Savinja, went to Rudolph's allies from the House of Gorizia.[9][10]

Following Rudolph's death in 1291, Albert I's assassination in 1308, and Frederick the Fair's failure to secure the German/Imperial crown for himself, the Habsburgs temporarily lost their supremacy in the Empire. In the early 14th century they also focused on the Kingdom of Bohemia. After Václav III’s death on 4 August 1306, there were no male heirs remaining in the Přemyslid dynasty. Habsburg scion Rudolph I was then elected but only lasted a year. The Bohemian kingship was an elected position,[11] and the Habsburgs were only able to secure it on a hereditary basis much later in 1626, following their submission of the Czech lands during the Thirty Years' War. After 1307, subsequent Habsburg attempts to gain the Bohemian crown were frustrated first by Henry of Bohemia (a member of the House of Gorizia) and then by the House of Luxembourg.

Instead, they were able to expand southwards: in 1311, they took over Savinja; after the death of Henry in 1335, they assumed power in Carniola and Carinthia; and in 1369, they succeeded his daughter Margaret in Tyrol. After the death of Albert III of Gorizia in 1374, they gained a foothold at Pazin in central Istria, followed by Trieste in 1382. Meanwhile, the original home territories of the Habsburgs in what is now Switzerland, including the Aargau with Habsburg Castle, were lost in the 14th century to the expanding Swiss Confederacy after the battles of Morgarten (1315) and Sempach (1386). Habsburg Castle itself was finally lost to the Swiss in 1415.

Rudolf IV's brothers Albert III and Leopold III ignored his efforts to preserve the integrity of the family domains, and enacted the separation of the so-called Albertinian and Leopoldian family lines on 25 September 1379 by the Treaty of Neuberg. The former would maintain Austria proper (then called Niederösterreich but comprising modern Lower Austria and most of Upper Austria), while the latter would rule over lands then labeled Oberösterreich, namely Inner Austria (Innerösterreich) comprising Styria, Carinthia and Carniola, and Further Austria (Vorderösterreich) consisting of Tyrol and the western Habsburg lands in Alsace and Swabia.[7]

By marrying Elisabeth of Luxembourg, the daughter of Emperor Sigismund in 1437, Duke Albert V of the Albertine line (1397–1439) became the ruler of Bohemia and Hungary, again expanding the family's political horizons. The next year, Albert was crowned as King of the Romans, known as such as Albert II. Following his early death in a battle against the Ottomans in 1439 and that of his son Ladislaus Postumus in 1457, the Habsburgs lost Bohemia once more as well as Hungary, for several decades. However, with the extinction of the House of Celje in 1456 and the House of Wallsee-Enns in 1466/1483, they managed to absorb significant secular enclaves within their territories, and create a contiguous domain stretching from the border with Bohemia to the Adriatic sea.

After the death of Leopold's eldest son William in 1406, the Leopoldian line was further split among his brothers into the Inner Austrian territory under Ernest the Iron and a Tyrolean/Further Austrian line under Frederick of the empty pockets. In 1440, Ernest's son Frederick III was chosen by the electoral college to succeed Albert II as the king. Several Habsburg kings had attempted to gain the imperial dignity 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.[7]

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 until 1806.[7]

Through the forged document called privilegium maius (1358/59), Duke Rudolf IV (1339–1365) introduced the title of Archduke to place the Habsburgs on a par with the Prince-electors of the Empire, since Emperor Charles IV had omitted to give them the electoral dignity in his Golden Bull of 1356. Charles, however, refused to recognize the title, as did his immediate successors.

Duke Ernest the Iron and his descendants unilaterally assumed the title "archduke". That title was only officially recognized in 1453 by Emperor Frederick III, himself a Habsburg.[12] Frederick 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 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, apparently only started to use the title after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy in 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. 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.

In 1457 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 favor of Frederick's son Maximilian I.

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. Frederick's aim was to make Austria a united country, stretching from the Rhine to the Mur and Leitha.[7]

On the external front, one of Frederick's main achievements was the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), in which he coerced Charles the Bold of Burgundy to give his daughter Mary of Burgundy as wife to Frederick's son Maximilian.[7] 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 favor of Philip in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493.[13]

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. Emperor Charles V would be the last to be crowned by the Pope himself, at Bologna in 1530.[13]

Maximilian's rule (1493–1519) was a time of dramatic expansion for the Habsburgs. In 1497, Maximilian's son Philip, known as the Handsome or the Fair, married Joanna of Castile, also known as Joan the Mad, heiress of the Castile. Phillip and Joan had six children, the eldest of whom became Emperor Charles V and ruled the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon (including their colonies in the New World), Southern Italy, Austria, and the Low Countries.[14]

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 Louis's sister Anna. The wedding was celebrated in grand style on 22 July 1515. All these 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 the latter's designs were ultimately successful: upon Louis's death in battle in 1526, Ferdinand became king of Bohemia and Hungary.

The Habsburg dynasty achieved its highest position when Charles V was elected Holy Roman Emperor. Much of Charles's reign was dedicated to the fight against Protestantism, which led to its eradication throughout vast areas under Habsburg control.

After the abdication of Charles V in 1556, the Habsburg dynasty split into the branch of the Austrian (or German) Habsburgs, led by Ferdinand, and the branch of the Spanish Habsburgs, initially led by Charles's son Philip.[15] Ferdinand I, King of Bohemia, Hungary,[16] and archduke of Austria in the name of his brother Charles V became suo jure monarch as well as the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperor (designated as successor already in 1531). Philip became King of Spain and its colonial empire as Philip II, and ruler of the Habsburg domains in Italy and the Low Countries. The Spanish Habsburgs also ruled Portugal for a time, known there as the Philippine dynasty (1580–1640).

The Seventeen Provinces and the Duchy of Milan were in personal union under the King of Spain, but remained part of the Holy Roman Empire. Furthermore, the Spanish king had claims on Hungary and Bohemia. In the secret Oñate treaty of 29 July 1617, the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs settled their mutual claims.

The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by frequent consanguineous marriages, resulting in a cumulatively deleterious effect on their gene pool. Health impairments due to inbreeding including epilepsy, insanity and death. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests inbreeding may have played a factor in their extinction.[17] Numerous members of the family showed specific facial deformities: an enlarged lower jaw with an extended chin known as mandibular prognathism or "Habsburg jaw", a large nose with hump and hanging tip ("Habsburg nose"), and an everted lower lip ("Habsburg lip"). The latter two are signs of maxillary deficiency. A 2019 study found that the degree of mandibular prognasthism in the Habsburg family shows a statistically significant correlation with the degree of inbreeding. A correlation between maxillary deficiency and degree of inbreeding was also present but was not statistically significant.[18][19] Other scientific studies, however, dispute the ideas of any linkage between fertility and consanguinity.[20]

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".[21][17]

The death of Charles II of Spain in 1700 led to the War of the Spanish Succession, and that of Emperor Charles VI in 1740 led to the War of the Austrian Succession. In the former, the House of Bourbon won the conflict and put a final end to the Habsburg rule in Spain. The latter, however, was won by Maria Theresa and led to the succession of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Haus Habsburg-Lothringen) becoming the new main branch of the dynasty, in the person of Maria Theresa's son, Joseph II. This new House was created by the marriage between Maria Theresa of Habsburg and Francis Stephan, Duke of Lorraine[22] (both of them were great-grandchildren of Habsburg emperor Ferdinand III, but from different empresses) being this new House a cadet branch of the female line of the House of Habsburg and the male line of the House of Lorraine. It is thought that extensive intra-family marriages within Spanish and Austrian lines contributed to the extinction of the main line.

On 6 August 1806, Emperor Francis I dissolved the Holy Roman Empire under pressure from Napoleon's reorganization of Germany. In anticipation of the loss of his title of Holy Roman Emperor, Francis had 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.[24] Under this arrangement, the Hungarians referred to their ruler as king and never emperor (see k. u. k.). 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 of Austria (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 that 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, on 31 May 1961 renounced all claims to the throne.

In the interwar period, the House of Habsburg was a vehement opponent of National Socialism and Communism. In Germany, Adolf Hitler diametrically opposed the centuries-old Habsburg principles of largely allowing local communities under their rule to maintain traditional ethnic, religious and language practices, and he bristled with hatred against the Habsburg family. During the Second World War there was a strong Habsburg resistance movement in Central Europe, which was radically persecuted by the Nazis and the Gestapo. The unofficial leader of these groups was Otto von Habsburg, who campaigned against the Nazis and for a free Central Europe in France and the United States. Most of the resistance fighters, such as Heinrich Maier, who successfully passed on production sites and plans for V-2 rockets, Tiger tanks and aircraft to the Allies, were executed. The Habsburg family played a leading role in the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Communist Eastern Bloc.[25][26][27][28][29]

As they accumulated crowns and titles, the Habsburgs developed a unique family tradition of multilingualism that evolved over the centuries. The Holy Roman Empire had been multilingual from the start, even though most of its emperors were native German-speakers.[30] The language issue within the Empire became gradually more salient as the non-religious use of Latin declined and that of national languages gained prominence during the High Middle Ages. Emperor Charles IV of Luxembourg was known to be fluent in Czech, French, German, Italian and Latin.[31]

The last section of his Golden Bull of 1356 specifies that the Empire's secular prince-electors "should be instructed in the varieties of the different dialects and languages" and that "since they are expected in all likelihood to have naturally acquired the German language, and to have been taught it from their infancy, [they] shall be instructed in the grammar of the Italian and Slavic tongues, beginning with the seventh year of their age so that, before the fourteenth year of their age, they may be learned in the same".[32] In the early 15th century, Strasbourg-based chronicler Jakob Twinger von Königshofen asserted that Charlemagne had mastered six languages, even though he had a preference for German.[30]:306

In the early years of the family's ascendancy, neither Rudolf I nor Albert I appear to have spoken French.[30]:278 By contrast, Charles V of Habsburg is well known some having been fluent in several languages. He was native in French and also knew Dutch from his youth in Flanders. He later added some Castilian Spanish, which he was required to learn by the Castilian Cortes Generales. He could also speak some Basque, acquired by the influence of the Basque secretaries serving in the royal court.[33] He gained a decent command of German following the Imperial election of 1519, though he never spoke it as well as French.[34] A witticism sometimes attributed to Charles was: "I speak Spanish/Latin [depending on the source] to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse."[35]

Latin was the administrative language of the Empire until the aggressive promotion of German by Joseph II in the late 18th century, which was partly reversed by his successors. From the 16th century, most if not all Habsburgs spoke French as well as German, and many also spoke Italian.[citation needed] Ferdinand I, Maximilian II and Rudolf II addressed the Bohemian Assembly in Czech, even though it is not clear that they were fluent. By contrast, there is little evidence that later Habsburgs in the 17th and 18th centuries spoke Czech, with the probable exception of Ferdinand III who made several stays in Bohemia and appears to have spoken Czech while there. In the 19th century, Francis I had notions of Czech, and Ferdinand I spoke it decently.[36] Maximilian II spoke Spanish, Latin, Hungarian and Italian in addition to French and German and his above-mentioned notions of Czech. Maria Theresa spoke German, Italian, French, Spanish, Latin, and added Hungarian before she became Empress.[37]

Franz Joseph received a bilingual early education in French and German, then added Czech and Hungarian and later Italian and Polish. He also learned Latin and Greek.[38] Even so, he viewed himself as German, and once wrote to Napoleon III "Nein, ich bin ein Deutscher Fürst".[39] After the end of the Habsburg Monarchy, Otto von Habsburg was fluent in English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese.[40]

Habsburg Castle, Aargau, Switzerland

Graz Castle [de]

Linz Castle

Hofburg Palace, Vienna

Hofburg, Innsbruck

Old Laxenburg Castle

Palace of Charles V, Granada

Palace of Margaret of Austria in Mechelen

Prague Castle

Bratislava Castle

Royal Palace of Milan

Royal Palace of Naples

El Escorial Palace near Madrid

Ambras Castle, Innsbruck

Neugebäude Palace near Vienna

Buda Castle

Royal Palace of Gödöllő near Budapest

Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna

Hetzendorf Palace, Vienna

Palace of Charles of Lorraine in Brussels

Royal Villa of Monza

Habsburg Hunting Palace in Cieszyn, Poland

Habsburg Palace in Żywiec, Poland

Palais Erzherzog Wilhelm in Vienna

Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl, Austria

Miramare Castle, Trieste

Villa Wartholz, Reichenau an der Rax

Hermesvilla in Vienna

Konopiště Castle near Benešov, Czechia

Achilleion Palace in Corfu

Schloss Wilhelminenberg, Vienna

Casa Austria (Villa Swoboda [de]) outside Salzburg

The Habsburgs' monarchical positions included:

Before Rudolph rose to German king, the Habsburgs were Counts of Baden in what is today southwestern Germany and Switzerland.[43]

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 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.

The abdications of Charles V in 1556 ended his formal authority over Ferdinand and made him suo jure ruler in Austria, Bohemia, Hungary, as well as Holy Roman Emperor.

Ferdinand's inheritance had been split in 1564 among his children, with Maximilian taking the Imperial crown and his younger brother Archduke Charles II ruling over 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). Charles's son and successor 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.

Habsburg Spain was a personal union between the Crowns of Castile and Aragon; Aragon was itself divided into the Kingdoms of Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Majorca, Naples, Sicily, Malta and Sardinia.[47] From 1581, they were kings of Portugal until they renounced this title in the 1668 Treaty of Lisbon. They were also Dukes of Milan, Lord of the Americas, and holder of multiple titles from territories within the Habsburg Netherlands. A full listing can be seen here.

The War of the Spanish Succession took place after the extinction of the Spanish Habsburg line, to determine the inheritance of Charles II.

Charles the Bold controlled not only Burgundy (both dukedom and county) but also Flanders and the broader Burgundian Netherlands. Frederick III managed to secure the marriage of Charles's only daughter, Mary of Burgundy, to his son Maximilian. The wedding took place on the evening of 16 August 1477, after the death of Charles.[48] 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.

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 War of the Austrian Succession took place after the extinction of the male line of the Austrian Habsburg line upon the death of Charles VI. The direct Habsburg line itself became totally extinct with the death of Maria Theresa of Austria, when it was followed by the House of Lorraine, styled of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Queen Maria Christina of Austria of Spain, great-granddaughter of Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor above. Wife of Alfonso XII of Spain and mother of Alfonso XIII of the House of Bourbon. Alfonso XIII's wife Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg was descended from King George I of Great Britain from the Habsburg Leopold Line {above}.

The House of Habsburg-Lorraine retained Austria and attached possessions after the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire; see below.

A son of Leopold II was Archduke Rainer of Austria whose wife was from the House of Savoy; a daughter Adelaide, Queen of Sardina was the wife of King Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy, and Sardinia and King of Italy. Their Children married into the Royal Houses of Bonaparte; Saxe-Coburg and Gotha {Bragança} {Portugal}; Savoy {Spain}; and the Dukedoms of Montferrat and Chablis.

(→Family Tree)

Francis Stephen assigned the grand duchy of Tuscany to his second son Peter Leopold, who in turn assigned it to his second son upon his accession as Holy Roman Emperor. Tuscany remained the domain of this cadet branch of the family until Italian unification.

The duchy of Modena was assigned to a minor branch of the family by the Congress of Vienna. It was lost to Italian unification. The Dukes named their line the House of Austria-Este, as they were descended from the daughter of the last D'Este Duke of Modena.

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 favor.

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.

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 Campanas, Querétaro, in 1867 by the republican forces of Benito Juárez.

Charles I was expelled from his domains after World War I and the empire was abolished.[43]

This gallery only features portraits believed to be based on likeness. It does not include possibly imaginary depictions, such as those of early Habsburg rulers created by Anton Boys for Archduke Ferdinand II in the late 16th century. It also does not display family members who failed to reach adult age or did not play any historically significant role, including most of those born in the late 19th and 20th century in line with the erosion of the Habsburg family's historical significance after World War I.

Individuals are listed by chronological order of birth. The title of Archduke/Archduchess belonged by birthright to all Austrian Habsburgs, and is generally omitted unless the individual used no other title.

King Rudolf I (1218-1291)

Duke Rudolf IV (1339-1365)

King Albert II (1397-1439)

Emperor Frederick III (1415-1493)

Sigismund, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1427-1496)

King Ladislaus the Posthumous (1440-1457)

Emperor Maximilian I (1459-1519)

Kunigunde of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1465-1520)

Philip the Handsome, King of Castile (1478-1506)

Margaret of Austria, Duchess of Savoy (1480-1530)

Eleanor of Austria, Queen of Portugal then of France (1498-1558)

Emperor Charles V (1500-1558)

Isabella of Austria, Queen of Denmark, Norway and Sweden (1501-1526)

Emperor Ferdinand I (1503-1564)

Mary of Hungary, Governor of the Netherlands (1505-1558)

George of Austria, Prince-Bishop of Liège (1505-1557)

Margaret of Parma (1522-1586)

Elizabeth of Austria, Queen of Poland (1526–1545)

King Philip II (1527-1598)

Emperor Maximilian II (1527-1576)

Maria of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1528-1603)

Anna of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1528-1590)

Ferdinand II, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1529-1595)

Maria of Austria, Duchess of Jülich-Cleves-Berg (1531-1581)

Magdalena of Austria, abbess of Hall in Tirol (1532-1590)

Catherine of Austria, Queen of Poland (1533-1572)

Eleanor of Austria, Duchess of Mantua (1534-1594)

Joanna of Austria, Princess of Portugal (1535-1573)

Barbara of Austria, Duchess of Ferrara (1539-1572)

Charles II, ruler of Inner Austria (1540-1590)

Carlos, Prince of Asturias (1545-1568)

Joanna of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1547-1578)

John of Austria (1547-1578)

Anna of Austria, Queen of Spain (1549-1580)

Emperor Rudolf II (1552-1612)

Ernest of Austria, ruler of Inner Austria, governor of the Spanish Netherlands (1553-1595)

Elisabeth of Austria, Queen of France (1554-1592)

Emperor Matthias (1557-1619)

Cardinal Andrew of Austria (1558-1600)

Maximilian III, ruler of Further Austria (1558-1618)

Albert (VII), ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1559-1621)

Charles of Austria, Margrave of Burgau (1560-1618)

Isabella Clara Eugenia, ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1566-1633)

Margaret of Austria, poor Clare (1567–1633)

Catalina Micaela of Spain, Duchess of Savoy (1567-1597)

Anne of Austria, Queen of Poland (1573-1598)

Maria Christina, Princess of Transylvania (1574-1621)

King Philip III (1578-1621)

Emperor Ferdinand II (1578-1637)

Eleanor of Austria, nun in Hall in Tirol (1582–1620)

Maximilian Ernest of Austria, Coadjutor of the Teutonic Order (1583-1616)

Maria of Austria, nun in Innsbrück (1584–1649)

Margaret of Austria, Queen of Spain (1584-1611)

Anna of Tyrol, Holy Roman Empress (1585-1618)

Leopold V, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1586-1632)

Constance of Austria, Queen of Poland (1588-1631)

Maria Maddalena of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1589-1631)

Charles of Austria, Bishop of Breslau (1590-1624)

Anne of Austria, Queen of France (1601-1666)

King Philip IV (1605-1665)

Maria Anna of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1606-1646)

Infante Carlos of Spain (1607–1632)

Emperor Ferdinand III (1608-1657)

Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand of Austria (1609 or 1610-1641)

Maria Anna, Electress of Bavaria (1610-1665)

Cecilia Renata of Austria, Queen of Poland (1611-1644)

Leopold Wilhelm of Austria (1614-1662)

Ferdinand Charles, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1628-1662)

John Joseph of Austria (1629-1679)

Isabella Clara of Austria, Duchess of Mantua, Montferrat, Nevers, Mayenne and Rethel (1629-1685)

Sigismund Francis, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1630-1665)

Maria Leopoldine of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1632-1649)

Ferdinand IV, King of the Romans (1633-1654)

Mariana of Austria, Queen of Spain (1634-1696)

Maria Theresa, Queen of France (1638-1683)

Emperor Leopold I (1640-1705)

Margaret Theresa of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1651-1673)

Eleonore of Austria, Queen of Poland (1653-1697)

Claudia Felicitas of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1653-1676)

Maria Anna Josepha of Austria, Electress of the Palatinate (1654-1689)

King Charles II (1661-1700)

Maria Antonia of Austria, Electress of Bavaria (1669-1692)

Emperor Joseph I (1678-1711)

Maria Elisabeth of Austria, governor of the Austrian Netherlands (1680-1741)

Maria Anna of Austria, Queen of Portugal (1683-1754)

Emperor Charles VI (1685-1740)

Maria Magdalena of Austria (1689–1743)

Maria Josepha of Austria, Queen of Poland (1699-1757)

Maria Amalia, Holy Roman Empress (1701-1756)

Maria Theresa of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1717-1780)

Cognatic:

The House of Habsburg (/ˈhæpsbɜːrɡ/; German: [ˈhaːpsbʊʁk]; alternatively spelled Hapsburg in English; German: Haus Habsburg, Spanish: Casa de Habsburgo, Hungarian: Habsburg-család), also House of Austria (German: Haus Österreich, Spanish: Casa de Austria),[3] was one of the most prominent royal houses of Europe in the 2nd millennium.

The house takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built in the 1020s in present-day Switzerland by Radbot of Klettgau, who named his fortress Habsburg. His grandson Otto II was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "Count of Habsburg" to his title. In 1273, Count Radbot's seventh-generation descendant Rudolph of Habsburg was elected King of the Romans. Taking advantage of the extinction of the Babenbergs and of his victory over Ottokar II of Bohemia at the battle on the Marchfeld in 1278, he subsequently moved the family's power base to Vienna, where the Habsburgs ruled until 1918.

The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs from 1440 until their extinction in the male line in 1740 and, after the death of Francis I, from 1765 until its dissolution in 1806. The house also produced kings of Bohemia, Hungary, Croatia, Spain, Portugal and Galicia-Lodomeria, with their respective colonies; rulers of several principalities in the Low Countries and Italy; and in the 19th century, emperors of Austria and of Austria-Hungary as well as one emperor of Mexico. The family split several times into parallel branches, most consequentially in the mid-16th century between its Spanish and Austrian branches following the abdication of Charles V. Although they ruled distinct territories, the different branches nevertheless maintained close relations and frequently intermarried.

The house of Habsburg still exists and owns the Austrian branch of the Order of the Golden Fleece and the Imperial and Royal Order of Saint George. As of early 2021, the head of the family is Karl von Habsburg.

The origins of Habsburg Castle's name 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.[4][5][6]

The Habsburg name was not continuously used by the family members, since they often emphasized their more prestigious princely titles. The dynasty was thus long known as the "house of Austria". Complementarily, in some circumstances the family members were identified by their place of birth. Charles V was known in his youth after his birthplace as Charles of Ghent. When he became king of Spain he was known as Charles of Spain, and after he was elected emperor, as Charles V (in French, Charles Quint).

In Spain, the dynasty was known as the Casa de Austria, including illegitimate sons such as John of Austria and John Joseph of Austria. The arms displayed in their simplest form were those of Austria, which the Habsburgs had made their own, at times impaled with the arms of the Duchy of Burgundy (ancient).

After Maria Theresa married Duke Francis Stephen of Lorraine, the idea of "Habsburg" as associated with ancestral Austrian rulership was used to show that the old dynasty continued as did all its inherited rights. When Francis I became Emperor of Austria, he adopted the old shield of Habsburg in his personal arms, together with Austria and Lorraine. This also reinforced the "Germanness" of the (French-speaking) Austrian Emperor and his claim to rule in Germany, not least against the Prussian Kings. Some younger sons who had no prospects of the throne were given the personal title of "count of Habsburg".

The surname of more recent members of the family such as Otto von Habsburg and Karl von Habsburg is taken to be "von Habsburg" or more completely "von Habsburg-Lothringen". Princes and members of the house use the tripartite arms adopted in the 18th century by Francis Stephen.

Timeline

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 forthwith farther back as the medieval Adalrich, Duke of Alsace, from the Etichonids from which Habsburg derives. His grandson Radbot of Klettgau founded the Habsburg Castle. That castle was the family seat during most of the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.

The Habsburgs expanded their influence through arranged marriages and incestuous relations with family royalty 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.[7][8]

By the second half of the 13th century, count Rudolph IV (1218–1291) had become an influential territorial lord in the area between the Vosges Mountains and Lake Constance. On 1 October 1273, he was elected as a compromise candidate as King of the Romans and received the name Rudolph I of Germany.[7] He then led a coalition against king Ottokar II of Bohemia who had taken advantage of the Great Interregnum in order to expand southwards, taking over the respective inheritances of the Babenberg (Austria, Styria, Savinja) and of the Spanheim (Carinthia and Carniola). In 1278, Rudolph and his allies defeated and killed Ottokar at the Battle of Marchfeld, and the lands he had acquired reverted to the German crown. With the Georgenberg Pact of 1286, Rudolph secured for his family the duchies of Austria and Styria. The southern portions of Ottokar's former realm, Carinthia, Carniola, and Savinja, went to Rudolph's allies from the House of Gorizia.[9][10]

Following Rudolph's death in 1291, Albert I's assassination in 1308, and Frederick the Fair's failure to secure the German/Imperial crown for himself, the Habsburgs temporarily lost their supremacy in the Empire. In the early 14th century they also focused on the Kingdom of Bohemia. After Václav III’s death on 4 August 1306, there were no male heirs remaining in the Přemyslid dynasty. Habsburg scion Rudolph I was then elected but only lasted a year. The Bohemian kingship was an elected position,[11] and the Habsburgs were only able to secure it on a hereditary basis much later in 1626, following their submission of the Czech lands during the Thirty Years' War. After 1307, subsequent Habsburg attempts to gain the Bohemian crown were frustrated first by Henry of Bohemia (a member of the House of Gorizia) and then by the House of Luxembourg.

Instead, they were able to expand southwards: in 1311, they took over Savinja; after the death of Henry in 1335, they assumed power in Carniola and Carinthia; and in 1369, they succeeded his daughter Margaret in Tyrol. After the death of Albert III of Gorizia in 1374, they gained a foothold at Pazin in central Istria, followed by Trieste in 1382. Meanwhile, the original home territories of the Habsburgs in what is now Switzerland, including the Aargau with Habsburg Castle, were lost in the 14th century to the expanding Swiss Confederacy after the battles of Morgarten (1315) and Sempach (1386). Habsburg Castle itself was finally lost to the Swiss in 1415.

Rudolf IV's brothers Albert III and Leopold III ignored his efforts to preserve the integrity of the family domains, and enacted the separation of the so-called Albertinian and Leopoldian family lines on 25 September 1379 by the Treaty of Neuberg. The former would maintain Austria proper (then called Niederösterreich but comprising modern Lower Austria and most of Upper Austria), while the latter would rule over lands then labeled Oberösterreich, namely Inner Austria (Innerösterreich) comprising Styria, Carinthia and Carniola, and Further Austria (Vorderösterreich) consisting of Tyrol and the western Habsburg lands in Alsace and Swabia.[7]

By marrying Elisabeth of Luxembourg, the daughter of Emperor Sigismund in 1437, Duke Albert V of the Albertine line (1397–1439) became the ruler of Bohemia and Hungary, again expanding the family's political horizons. The next year, Albert was crowned as King of the Romans, known as such as Albert II. Following his early death in a battle against the Ottomans in 1439 and that of his son Ladislaus Postumus in 1457, the Habsburgs lost Bohemia once more as well as Hungary, for several decades. However, with the extinction of the House of Celje in 1456 and the House of Wallsee-Enns in 1466/1483, they managed to absorb significant secular enclaves within their territories, and create a contiguous domain stretching from the border with Bohemia to the Adriatic sea.

After the death of Leopold's eldest son William in 1406, the Leopoldian line was further split among his brothers into the Inner Austrian territory under Ernest the Iron and a Tyrolean/Further Austrian line under Frederick of the empty pockets. In 1440, Ernest's son Frederick III was chosen by the electoral college to succeed Albert II as the king. Several Habsburg kings had attempted to gain the imperial dignity 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.[7]

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 until 1806.[7]

Through the forged document called privilegium maius (1358/59), Duke Rudolf IV (1339–1365) introduced the title of Archduke to place the Habsburgs on a par with the Prince-electors of the Empire, since Emperor Charles IV had omitted to give them the electoral dignity in his Golden Bull of 1356. Charles, however, refused to recognize the title, as did his immediate successors.

Duke Ernest the Iron and his descendants unilaterally assumed the title "archduke". That title was only officially recognized in 1453 by Emperor Frederick III, himself a Habsburg.[12] Frederick 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 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, apparently only started to use the title after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy in 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. 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.

In 1457 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 favor of Frederick's son Maximilian I.

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. Frederick's aim was to make Austria a united country, stretching from the Rhine to the Mur and Leitha.[7]

On the external front, one of Frederick's main achievements was the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), in which he coerced Charles the Bold of Burgundy to give his daughter Mary of Burgundy as wife to Frederick's son Maximilian.[7] 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 favor of Philip in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493.[13]

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. Emperor Charles V would be the last to be crowned by the Pope himself, at Bologna in 1530.[13]

Maximilian's rule (1493–1519) was a time of dramatic expansion for the Habsburgs. In 1497, Maximilian's son Philip, known as the Handsome or the Fair, married Joanna of Castile, also known as Joan the Mad, heiress of the Castile. Phillip and Joan had six children, the eldest of whom became Emperor Charles V and ruled the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon (including their colonies in the New World), Southern Italy, Austria, and the Low Countries.[14]

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 Louis's sister Anna. The wedding was celebrated in grand style on 22 July 1515. All these 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 the latter's designs were ultimately successful: upon Louis's death in battle in 1526, Ferdinand became king of Bohemia and Hungary.

The Habsburg dynasty achieved its highest position when Charles V was elected Holy Roman Emperor. Much of Charles's reign was dedicated to the fight against Protestantism, which led to its eradication throughout vast areas under Habsburg control.

After the abdication of Charles V in 1556, the Habsburg dynasty split into the branch of the Austrian (or German) Habsburgs, led by Ferdinand, and the branch of the Spanish Habsburgs, initially led by Charles's son Philip.[15] Ferdinand I, King of Bohemia, Hungary,[16] and archduke of Austria in the name of his brother Charles V became suo jure monarch as well as the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperor (designated as successor already in 1531). Philip became King of Spain and its colonial empire as Philip II, and ruler of the Habsburg domains in Italy and the Low Countries. The Spanish Habsburgs also ruled Portugal for a time, known there as the Philippine dynasty (1580–1640).

The Seventeen Provinces and the Duchy of Milan were in personal union under the King of Spain, but remained part of the Holy Roman Empire. Furthermore, the Spanish king had claims on Hungary and Bohemia. In the secret Oñate treaty of 29 July 1617, the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs settled their mutual claims.

The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by frequent consanguineous marriages, resulting in a cumulatively deleterious effect on their gene pool. Health impairments due to inbreeding including epilepsy, insanity and death. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests inbreeding may have played a factor in their extinction.[17] Numerous members of the family showed specific facial deformities: an enlarged lower jaw with an extended chin known as mandibular prognathism or "Habsburg jaw", a large nose with hump and hanging tip ("Habsburg nose"), and an everted lower lip ("Habsburg lip"). The latter two are signs of maxillary deficiency. A 2019 study found that the degree of mandibular prognasthism in the Habsburg family shows a statistically significant correlation with the degree of inbreeding. A correlation between maxillary deficiency and degree of inbreeding was also present but was not statistically significant.[18][19] Other scientific studies, however, dispute the ideas of any linkage between fertility and consanguinity.[20]

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".[21][17]

The death of Charles II of Spain in 1700 led to the War of the Spanish Succession, and that of Emperor Charles VI in 1740 led to the War of the Austrian Succession. In the former, the House of Bourbon won the conflict and put a final end to the Habsburg rule in Spain. The latter, however, was won by Maria Theresa and led to the succession of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Haus Habsburg-Lothringen) becoming the new main branch of the dynasty, in the person of Maria Theresa's son, Joseph II. This new House was created by the marriage between Maria Theresa of Habsburg and Francis Stephan, Duke of Lorraine[22] (both of them were great-grandchildren of Habsburg emperor Ferdinand III, but from different empresses) being this new House a cadet branch of the female line of the House of Habsburg and the male line of the House of Lorraine. It is thought that extensive intra-family marriages within Spanish and Austrian lines contributed to the extinction of the main line.

On 6 August 1806, Emperor Francis I dissolved the Holy Roman Empire under pressure from Napoleon's reorganization of Germany. In anticipation of the loss of his title of Holy Roman Emperor, Francis had 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.[24] Under this arrangement, the Hungarians referred to their ruler as king and never emperor (see k. u. k.). 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 of Austria (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 that 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, on 31 May 1961 renounced all claims to the throne.

In the interwar period, the House of Habsburg was a vehement opponent of National Socialism and Communism. In Germany, Adolf Hitler diametrically opposed the centuries-old Habsburg principles of largely allowing local communities under their rule to maintain traditional ethnic, religious and language practices, and he bristled with hatred against the Habsburg family. During the Second World War there was a strong Habsburg resistance movement in Central Europe, which was radically persecuted by the Nazis and the Gestapo. The unofficial leader of these groups was Otto von Habsburg, who campaigned against the Nazis and for a free Central Europe in France and the United States. Most of the resistance fighters, such as Heinrich Maier, who successfully passed on production sites and plans for V-2 rockets, Tiger tanks and aircraft to the Allies, were executed. The Habsburg family played a leading role in the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Communist Eastern Bloc.[25][26][27][28][29]

As they accumulated crowns and titles, the Habsburgs developed a unique family tradition of multilingualism that evolved over the centuries. The Holy Roman Empire had been multilingual from the start, even though most of its emperors were native German-speakers.[30] The language issue within the Empire became gradually more salient as the non-religious use of Latin declined and that of national languages gained prominence during the High Middle Ages. Emperor Charles IV of Luxembourg was known to be fluent in Czech, French, German, Italian and Latin.[31]

The last section of his Golden Bull of 1356 specifies that the Empire's secular prince-electors "should be instructed in the varieties of the different dialects and languages" and that "since they are expected in all likelihood to have naturally acquired the German language, and to have been taught it from their infancy, [they] shall be instructed in the grammar of the Italian and Slavic tongues, beginning with the seventh year of their age so that, before the fourteenth year of their age, they may be learned in the same".[32] In the early 15th century, Strasbourg-based chronicler Jakob Twinger von Königshofen asserted that Charlemagne had mastered six languages, even though he had a preference for German.[30]:306

In the early years of the family's ascendancy, neither Rudolf I nor Albert I appear to have spoken French.[30]:278 By contrast, Charles V of Habsburg is well known some having been fluent in several languages. He was native in French and also knew Dutch from his youth in Flanders. He later added some Castilian Spanish, which he was required to learn by the Castilian Cortes Generales. He could also speak some Basque, acquired by the influence of the Basque secretaries serving in the royal court.[33] He gained a decent command of German following the Imperial election of 1519, though he never spoke it as well as French.[34] A witticism sometimes attributed to Charles was: "I speak Spanish/Latin [depending on the source] to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse."[35]

Latin was the administrative language of the Empire until the aggressive promotion of German by Joseph II in the late 18th century, which was partly reversed by his successors. From the 16th century, most if not all Habsburgs spoke French as well as German, and many also spoke Italian.[citation needed] Ferdinand I, Maximilian II and Rudolf II addressed the Bohemian Assembly in Czech, even though it is not clear that they were fluent. By contrast, there is little evidence that later Habsburgs in the 17th and 18th centuries spoke Czech, with the probable exception of Ferdinand III who made several stays in Bohemia and appears to have spoken Czech while there. In the 19th century, Francis I had notions of Czech, and Ferdinand I spoke it decently.[36] Maximilian II spoke Spanish, Latin, Hungarian and Italian in addition to French and German and his above-mentioned notions of Czech. Maria Theresa spoke German, Italian, French, Spanish, Latin, and added Hungarian before she became Empress.[37]

Franz Joseph received a bilingual early education in French and German, then added Czech and Hungarian and later Italian and Polish. He also learned Latin and Greek.[38] Even so, he viewed himself as German, and once wrote to Napoleon III "Nein, ich bin ein Deutscher Fürst".[39] After the end of the Habsburg Monarchy, Otto von Habsburg was fluent in English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese.[40]

Habsburg Castle, Aargau, Switzerland

Graz Castle [de]

Linz Castle

Hofburg Palace, Vienna

Hofburg, Innsbruck

Old Laxenburg Castle

Palace of Charles V, Granada

Palace of Margaret of Austria in Mechelen

Prague Castle

Bratislava Castle

Royal Palace of Milan

Royal Palace of Naples

El Escorial Palace near Madrid

Ambras Castle, Innsbruck

Neugebäude Palace near Vienna

Buda Castle

Royal Palace of Gödöllő near Budapest

Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna

Hetzendorf Palace, Vienna

Palace of Charles of Lorraine in Brussels

Royal Villa of Monza

Habsburg Hunting Palace in Cieszyn, Poland

Habsburg Palace in Żywiec, Poland

Palais Erzherzog Wilhelm in Vienna

Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl, Austria

Miramare Castle, Trieste

Villa Wartholz, Reichenau an der Rax

Hermesvilla in Vienna

Konopiště Castle near Benešov, Czechia

Achilleion Palace in Corfu

Schloss Wilhelminenberg, Vienna

Casa Austria (Villa Swoboda [de]) outside Salzburg

The Habsburgs' monarchical positions included:

Before Rudolph rose to German king, the Habsburgs were Counts of Baden in what is today southwestern Germany and Switzerland.[43]

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 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.

The abdications of Charles V in 1556 ended his formal authority over Ferdinand and made him suo jure ruler in Austria, Bohemia, Hungary, as well as Holy Roman Emperor.

Ferdinand's inheritance had been split in 1564 among his children, with Maximilian taking the Imperial crown and his younger brother Archduke Charles II ruling over 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). Charles's son and successor 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.

Habsburg Spain was a personal union between the Crowns of Castile and Aragon; Aragon was itself divided into the Kingdoms of Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Majorca, Naples, Sicily, Malta and Sardinia.[47] From 1581, they were kings of Portugal until they renounced this title in the 1668 Treaty of Lisbon. They were also Dukes of Milan, Lord of the Americas, and holder of multiple titles from territories within the Habsburg Netherlands. A full listing can be seen here.

The War of the Spanish Succession took place after the extinction of the Spanish Habsburg line, to determine the inheritance of Charles II.

Charles the Bold controlled not only Burgundy (both dukedom and county) but also Flanders and the broader Burgundian Netherlands. Frederick III managed to secure the marriage of Charles's only daughter, Mary of Burgundy, to his son Maximilian. The wedding took place on the evening of 16 August 1477, after the death of Charles.[48] 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.

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 War of the Austrian Succession took place after the extinction of the male line of the Austrian Habsburg line upon the death of Charles VI. The direct Habsburg line itself became totally extinct with the death of Maria Theresa of Austria, when it was followed by the House of Lorraine, styled of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Queen Maria Christina of Austria of Spain, great-granddaughter of Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor above. Wife of Alfonso XII of Spain and mother of Alfonso XIII of the House of Bourbon. Alfonso XIII's wife Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg was descended from King George I of Great Britain from the Habsburg Leopold Line {above}.

The House of Habsburg-Lorraine retained Austria and attached possessions after the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire; see below.

A son of Leopold II was Archduke Rainer of Austria whose wife was from the House of Savoy; a daughter Adelaide, Queen of Sardina was the wife of King Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy, and Sardinia and King of Italy. Their Children married into the Royal Houses of Bonaparte; Saxe-Coburg and Gotha {Bragança} {Portugal}; Savoy {Spain}; and the Dukedoms of Montferrat and Chablis.

(→Family Tree)

Francis Stephen assigned the grand duchy of Tuscany to his second son Peter Leopold, who in turn assigned it to his second son upon his accession as Holy Roman Emperor. Tuscany remained the domain of this cadet branch of the family until Italian unification.

The duchy of Modena was assigned to a minor branch of the family by the Congress of Vienna. It was lost to Italian unification. The Dukes named their line the House of Austria-Este, as they were descended from the daughter of the last D'Este Duke of Modena.

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 favor.

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.

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 Campanas, Querétaro, in 1867 by the republican forces of Benito Juárez.

Charles I was expelled from his domains after World War I and the empire was abolished.[43]

This gallery only features portraits believed to be based on likeness. It does not include possibly imaginary depictions, such as those of early Habsburg rulers created by Anton Boys for Archduke Ferdinand II in the late 16th century. It also does not display family members who failed to reach adult age or did not play any historically significant role, including most of those born in the late 19th and 20th century in line with the erosion of the Habsburg family's historical significance after World War I.

Individuals are listed by chronological order of birth. The title of Archduke/Archduchess belonged by birthright to all Austrian Habsburgs, and is generally omitted unless the individual used no other title.

King Rudolf I (1218-1291)

Duke Rudolf IV (1339-1365)

King Albert II (1397-1439)

Emperor Frederick III (1415-1493)

Sigismund, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1427-1496)

King Ladislaus the Posthumous (1440-1457)

Emperor Maximilian I (1459-1519)

Kunigunde of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1465-1520)

Philip the Handsome, King of Castile (1478-1506)

Margaret of Austria, Duchess of Savoy (1480-1530)

Eleanor of Austria, Queen of Portugal then of France (1498-1558)

Emperor Charles V (1500-1558)

Isabella of Austria, Queen of Denmark, Norway and Sweden (1501-1526)

Emperor Ferdinand I (1503-1564)

Mary of Hungary, Governor of the Netherlands (1505-1558)

George of Austria, Prince-Bishop of Liège (1505-1557)

Margaret of Parma (1522-1586)

Elizabeth of Austria, Queen of Poland (1526–1545)

King Philip II (1527-1598)

Emperor Maximilian II (1527-1576)

Maria of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1528-1603)

Anna of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1528-1590)

Ferdinand II, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1529-1595)

Maria of Austria, Duchess of Jülich-Cleves-Berg (1531-1581)

Magdalena of Austria, abbess of Hall in Tirol (1532-1590)

Catherine of Austria, Queen of Poland (1533-1572)

Eleanor of Austria, Duchess of Mantua (1534-1594)

Joanna of Austria, Princess of Portugal (1535-1573)

Barbara of Austria, Duchess of Ferrara (1539-1572)

Charles II, ruler of Inner Austria (1540-1590)

Carlos, Prince of Asturias (1545-1568)

Joanna of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1547-1578)

John of Austria (1547-1578)

Anna of Austria, Queen of Spain (1549-1580)

Emperor Rudolf II (1552-1612)

Ernest of Austria, ruler of Inner Austria, governor of the Spanish Netherlands (1553-1595)

Elisabeth of Austria, Queen of France (1554-1592)

Emperor Matthias (1557-1619)

Cardinal Andrew of Austria (1558-1600)

Maximilian III, ruler of Further Austria (1558-1618)

Albert (VII), ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1559-1621)

Charles of Austria, Margrave of Burgau (1560-1618)

Isabella Clara Eugenia, ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1566-1633)

Margaret of Austria, poor Clare (1567–1633)

Catalina Micaela of Spain, Duchess of Savoy (1567-1597)

Anne of Austria, Queen of Poland (1573-1598)

Maria Christina, Princess of Transylvania (1574-1621)

King Philip III (1578-1621)

Emperor Ferdinand II (1578-1637)

Eleanor of Austria, nun in Hall in Tirol (1582–1620)

Maximilian Ernest of Austria, Coadjutor of the Teutonic Order (1583-1616)

Maria of Austria, nun in Innsbrück (1584–1649)

Margaret of Austria, Queen of Spain (1584-1611)

Anna of Tyrol, Holy Roman Empress (1585-1618)

Leopold V, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1586-1632)

Constance of Austria, Queen of Poland (1588-1631)

Maria Maddalena of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1589-1631)

Charles of Austria, Bishop of Breslau (1590-1624)

Anne of Austria, Queen of France (1601-1666)

King Philip IV (1605-1665)

Maria Anna of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1606-1646)

Infante Carlos of Spain (1607–1632)

Emperor Ferdinand III (1608-1657)

Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand of Austria (1609 or 1610-1641)

Maria Anna, Electress of Bavaria (1610-1665)

Cecilia Renata of Austria, Queen of Poland (1611-1644)

Leopold Wilhelm of Austria (1614-1662)

Ferdinand Charles, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1628-1662)

John Joseph of Austria (1629-1679)

Isabella Clara of Austria, Duchess of Mantua, Montferrat, Nevers, Mayenne and Rethel (1629-1685)

Sigismund Francis, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1630-1665)

Maria Leopoldine of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1632-1649)

Ferdinand IV, King of the Romans (1633-1654)

Mariana of Austria, Queen of Spain (1634-1696)

Maria Theresa, Queen of France (1638-1683)

Emperor Leopold I (1640-1705)

Margaret Theresa of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1651-1673)

Eleonore of Austria, Queen of Poland (1653-1697)

Claudia Felicitas of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1653-1676)

Maria Anna Josepha of Austria, Electress of the Palatinate (1654-1689)

King Charles II (1661-1700)

Maria Antonia of Austria, Electress of Bavaria (1669-1692)

Emperor Joseph I (1678-1711)

Maria Elisabeth of Austria, governor of the Austrian Netherlands (1680-1741)

Maria Anna of Austria, Queen of Portugal (1683-1754)

Emperor Charles VI (1685-1740)

Maria Magdalena of Austria (1689–1743)

Maria Josepha of Austria, Queen of Poland (1699-1757)

Maria Amalia, Holy Roman Empress (1701-1756)

Maria Theresa of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1717-1780)

Cognatic:

The House of Habsburg (/ˈhæpsbɜːrɡ/; German: [ˈhaːpsbʊʁk]; alternatively spelled Hapsburg in English; German: Haus Habsburg, Spanish: Casa de Habsburgo, Hungarian: Habsburg-család), also House of Austria (German: Haus Österreich, Spanish: Casa de Austria),[3] was one of the most prominent royal houses of Europe in the 2nd millennium.

The house takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built in the 1020s in present-day Switzerland by Radbot of Klettgau, who named his fortress Habsburg. His grandson Otto II was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "Count of Habsburg" to his title. In 1273, Count Radbot's seventh-generation descendant Rudolph of Habsburg was elected King of the Romans. Taking advantage of the extinction of the Babenbergs and of his victory over Ottokar II of Bohemia at the battle on the Marchfeld in 1278, he subsequently moved the family's power base to Vienna, where the Habsburgs ruled until 1918.

The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs from 1440 until their extinction in the male line in 1740 and, after the death of Francis I, from 1765 until its dissolution in 1806. The house also produced kings of Bohemia, Hungary, Croatia, Spain, Portugal and Galicia-Lodomeria, with their respective colonies; rulers of several principalities in the Low Countries and Italy; and in the 19th century, emperors of Austria and of Austria-Hungary as well as one emperor of Mexico. The family split several times into parallel branches, most consequentially in the mid-16th century between its Spanish and Austrian branches following the abdication of Charles V. Although they ruled distinct territories, the different branches nevertheless maintained close relations and frequently intermarried.

The house of Habsburg still exists and owns the Austrian branch of the Order of the Golden Fleece and the Imperial and Royal Order of Saint George. As of early 2021, the head of the family is Karl von Habsburg.

The origins of Habsburg Castle's name 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.[4][5][6]

The Habsburg name was not continuously used by the family members, since they often emphasized their more prestigious princely titles. The dynasty was thus long known as the "house of Austria". Complementarily, in some circumstances the family members were identified by their place of birth. Charles V was known in his youth after his birthplace as Charles of Ghent. When he became king of Spain he was known as Charles of Spain, and after he was elected emperor, as Charles V (in French, Charles Quint).

In Spain, the dynasty was known as the Casa de Austria, including illegitimate sons such as John of Austria and John Joseph of Austria. The arms displayed in their simplest form were those of Austria, which the Habsburgs had made their own, at times impaled with the arms of the Duchy of Burgundy (ancient).

After Maria Theresa married Duke Francis Stephen of Lorraine, the idea of "Habsburg" as associated with ancestral Austrian rulership was used to show that the old dynasty continued as did all its inherited rights. When Francis I became Emperor of Austria, he adopted the old shield of Habsburg in his personal arms, together with Austria and Lorraine. This also reinforced the "Germanness" of the (French-speaking) Austrian Emperor and his claim to rule in Germany, not least against the Prussian Kings. Some younger sons who had no prospects of the throne were given the personal title of "count of Habsburg".

The surname of more recent members of the family such as Otto von Habsburg and Karl von Habsburg is taken to be "von Habsburg" or more completely "von Habsburg-Lothringen". Princes and members of the house use the tripartite arms adopted in the 18th century by Francis Stephen.

Timeline

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 forthwith farther back as the medieval Adalrich, Duke of Alsace, from the Etichonids from which Habsburg derives. His grandson Radbot of Klettgau founded the Habsburg Castle. That castle was the family seat during most of the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.

The Habsburgs expanded their influence through arranged marriages and incestuous relations with family royalty 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.[7][8]

By the second half of the 13th century, count Rudolph IV (1218–1291) had become an influential territorial lord in the area between the Vosges Mountains and Lake Constance. On 1 October 1273, he was elected as a compromise candidate as King of the Romans and received the name Rudolph I of Germany.[7] He then led a coalition against king Ottokar II of Bohemia who had taken advantage of the Great Interregnum in order to expand southwards, taking over the respective inheritances of the Babenberg (Austria, Styria, Savinja) and of the Spanheim (Carinthia and Carniola). In 1278, Rudolph and his allies defeated and killed Ottokar at the Battle of Marchfeld, and the lands he had acquired reverted to the German crown. With the Georgenberg Pact of 1286, Rudolph secured for his family the duchies of Austria and Styria. The southern portions of Ottokar's former realm, Carinthia, Carniola, and Savinja, went to Rudolph's allies from the House of Gorizia.[9][10]

Following Rudolph's death in 1291, Albert I's assassination in 1308, and Frederick the Fair's failure to secure the German/Imperial crown for himself, the Habsburgs temporarily lost their supremacy in the Empire. In the early 14th century they also focused on the Kingdom of Bohemia. After Václav III’s death on 4 August 1306, there were no male heirs remaining in the Přemyslid dynasty. Habsburg scion Rudolph I was then elected but only lasted a year. The Bohemian kingship was an elected position,[11] and the Habsburgs were only able to secure it on a hereditary basis much later in 1626, following their submission of the Czech lands during the Thirty Years' War. After 1307, subsequent Habsburg attempts to gain the Bohemian crown were frustrated first by Henry of Bohemia (a member of the House of Gorizia) and then by the House of Luxembourg.

Instead, they were able to expand southwards: in 1311, they took over Savinja; after the death of Henry in 1335, they assumed power in Carniola and Carinthia; and in 1369, they succeeded his daughter Margaret in Tyrol. After the death of Albert III of Gorizia in 1374, they gained a foothold at Pazin in central Istria, followed by Trieste in 1382. Meanwhile, the original home territories of the Habsburgs in what is now Switzerland, including the Aargau with Habsburg Castle, were lost in the 14th century to the expanding Swiss Confederacy after the battles of Morgarten (1315) and Sempach (1386). Habsburg Castle itself was finally lost to the Swiss in 1415.

Rudolf IV's brothers Albert III and Leopold III ignored his efforts to preserve the integrity of the family domains, and enacted the separation of the so-called Albertinian and Leopoldian family lines on 25 September 1379 by the Treaty of Neuberg. The former would maintain Austria proper (then called Niederösterreich but comprising modern Lower Austria and most of Upper Austria), while the latter would rule over lands then labeled Oberösterreich, namely Inner Austria (Innerösterreich) comprising Styria, Carinthia and Carniola, and Further Austria (Vorderösterreich) consisting of Tyrol and the western Habsburg lands in Alsace and Swabia.[7]

By marrying Elisabeth of Luxembourg, the daughter of Emperor Sigismund in 1437, Duke Albert V of the Albertine line (1397–1439) became the ruler of Bohemia and Hungary, again expanding the family's political horizons. The next year, Albert was crowned as King of the Romans, known as such as Albert II. Following his early death in a battle against the Ottomans in 1439 and that of his son Ladislaus Postumus in 1457, the Habsburgs lost Bohemia once more as well as Hungary, for several decades. However, with the extinction of the House of Celje in 1456 and the House of Wallsee-Enns in 1466/1483, they managed to absorb significant secular enclaves within their territories, and create a contiguous domain stretching from the border with Bohemia to the Adriatic sea.

After the death of Leopold's eldest son William in 1406, the Leopoldian line was further split among his brothers into the Inner Austrian territory under Ernest the Iron and a Tyrolean/Further Austrian line under Frederick of the empty pockets. In 1440, Ernest's son Frederick III was chosen by the electoral college to succeed Albert II as the king. Several Habsburg kings had attempted to gain the imperial dignity 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.[7]

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 until 1806.[7]

Through the forged document called privilegium maius (1358/59), Duke Rudolf IV (1339–1365) introduced the title of Archduke to place the Habsburgs on a par with the Prince-electors of the Empire, since Emperor Charles IV had omitted to give them the electoral dignity in his Golden Bull of 1356. Charles, however, refused to recognize the title, as did his immediate successors.

Duke Ernest the Iron and his descendants unilaterally assumed the title "archduke". That title was only officially recognized in 1453 by Emperor Frederick III, himself a Habsburg.[12] Frederick 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 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, apparently only started to use the title after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy in 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. 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.

In 1457 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 favor of Frederick's son Maximilian I.

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. Frederick's aim was to make Austria a united country, stretching from the Rhine to the Mur and Leitha.[7]

On the external front, one of Frederick's main achievements was the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), in which he coerced Charles the Bold of Burgundy to give his daughter Mary of Burgundy as wife to Frederick's son Maximilian.[7] 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 favor of Philip in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493.[13]

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. Emperor Charles V would be the last to be crowned by the Pope himself, at Bologna in 1530.[13]

Maximilian's rule (1493–1519) was a time of dramatic expansion for the Habsburgs. In 1497, Maximilian's son Philip, known as the Handsome or the Fair, married Joanna of Castile, also known as Joan the Mad, heiress of the Castile. Phillip and Joan had six children, the eldest of whom became Emperor Charles V and ruled the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon (including their colonies in the New World), Southern Italy, Austria, and the Low Countries.[14]

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 Louis's sister Anna. The wedding was celebrated in grand style on 22 July 1515. All these 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 the latter's designs were ultimately successful: upon Louis's death in battle in 1526, Ferdinand became king of Bohemia and Hungary.

The Habsburg dynasty achieved its highest position when Charles V was elected Holy Roman Emperor. Much of Charles's reign was dedicated to the fight against Protestantism, which led to its eradication throughout vast areas under Habsburg control.

After the abdication of Charles V in 1556, the Habsburg dynasty split into the branch of the Austrian (or German) Habsburgs, led by Ferdinand, and the branch of the Spanish Habsburgs, initially led by Charles's son Philip.[15] Ferdinand I, King of Bohemia, Hungary,[16] and archduke of Austria in the name of his brother Charles V became suo jure monarch as well as the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperor (designated as successor already in 1531). Philip became King of Spain and its colonial empire as Philip II, and ruler of the Habsburg domains in Italy and the Low Countries. The Spanish Habsburgs also ruled Portugal for a time, known there as the Philippine dynasty (1580–1640).

The Seventeen Provinces and the Duchy of Milan were in personal union under the King of Spain, but remained part of the Holy Roman Empire. Furthermore, the Spanish king had claims on Hungary and Bohemia. In the secret Oñate treaty of 29 July 1617, the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs settled their mutual claims.

The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by frequent consanguineous marriages, resulting in a cumulatively deleterious effect on their gene pool. Health impairments due to inbreeding including epilepsy, insanity and death. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests inbreeding may have played a factor in their extinction.[17] Numerous members of the family showed specific facial deformities: an enlarged lower jaw with an extended chin known as mandibular prognathism or "Habsburg jaw", a large nose with hump and hanging tip ("Habsburg nose"), and an everted lower lip ("Habsburg lip"). The latter two are signs of maxillary deficiency. A 2019 study found that the degree of mandibular prognasthism in the Habsburg family shows a statistically significant correlation with the degree of inbreeding. A correlation between maxillary deficiency and degree of inbreeding was also present but was not statistically significant.[18][19] Other scientific studies, however, dispute the ideas of any linkage between fertility and consanguinity.[20]

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".[21][17]

The death of Charles II of Spain in 1700 led to the War of the Spanish Succession, and that of Emperor Charles VI in 1740 led to the War of the Austrian Succession. In the former, the House of Bourbon won the conflict and put a final end to the Habsburg rule in Spain. The latter, however, was won by Maria Theresa and led to the succession of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Haus Habsburg-Lothringen) becoming the new main branch of the dynasty, in the person of Maria Theresa's son, Joseph II. This new House was created by the marriage between Maria Theresa of Habsburg and Francis Stephan, Duke of Lorraine[22] (both of them were great-grandchildren of Habsburg emperor Ferdinand III, but from different empresses) being this new House a cadet branch of the female line of the House of Habsburg and the male line of the House of Lorraine. It is thought that extensive intra-family marriages within Spanish and Austrian lines contributed to the extinction of the main line.

On 6 August 1806, Emperor Francis I dissolved the Holy Roman Empire under pressure from Napoleon's reorganization of Germany. In anticipation of the loss of his title of Holy Roman Emperor, Francis had 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.[24] Under this arrangement, the Hungarians referred to their ruler as king and never emperor (see k. u. k.). 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 of Austria (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 that 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, on 31 May 1961 renounced all claims to the throne.

In the interwar period, the House of Habsburg was a vehement opponent of National Socialism and Communism. In Germany, Adolf Hitler diametrically opposed the centuries-old Habsburg principles of largely allowing local communities under their rule to maintain traditional ethnic, religious and language practices, and he bristled with hatred against the Habsburg family. During the Second World War there was a strong Habsburg resistance movement in Central Europe, which was radically persecuted by the Nazis and the Gestapo. The unofficial leader of these groups was Otto von Habsburg, who campaigned against the Nazis and for a free Central Europe in France and the United States. Most of the resistance fighters, such as Heinrich Maier, who successfully passed on production sites and plans for V-2 rockets, Tiger tanks and aircraft to the Allies, were executed. The Habsburg family played a leading role in the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Communist Eastern Bloc.[25][26][27][28][29]

As they accumulated crowns and titles, the Habsburgs developed a unique family tradition of multilingualism that evolved over the centuries. The Holy Roman Empire had been multilingual from the start, even though most of its emperors were native German-speakers.[30] The language issue within the Empire became gradually more salient as the non-religious use of Latin declined and that of national languages gained prominence during the High Middle Ages. Emperor Charles IV of Luxembourg was known to be fluent in Czech, French, German, Italian and Latin.[31]

The last section of his Golden Bull of 1356 specifies that the Empire's secular prince-electors "should be instructed in the varieties of the different dialects and languages" and that "since they are expected in all likelihood to have naturally acquired the German language, and to have been taught it from their infancy, [they] shall be instructed in the grammar of the Italian and Slavic tongues, beginning with the seventh year of their age so that, before the fourteenth year of their age, they may be learned in the same".[32] In the early 15th century, Strasbourg-based chronicler Jakob Twinger von Königshofen asserted that Charlemagne had mastered six languages, even though he had a preference for German.[30]:306

In the early years of the family's ascendancy, neither Rudolf I nor Albert I appear to have spoken French.[30]:278 By contrast, Charles V of Habsburg is well known some having been fluent in several languages. He was native in French and also knew Dutch from his youth in Flanders. He later added some Castilian Spanish, which he was required to learn by the Castilian Cortes Generales. He could also speak some Basque, acquired by the influence of the Basque secretaries serving in the royal court.[33] He gained a decent command of German following the Imperial election of 1519, though he never spoke it as well as French.[34] A witticism sometimes attributed to Charles was: "I speak Spanish/Latin [depending on the source] to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse."[35]

Latin was the administrative language of the Empire until the aggressive promotion of German by Joseph II in the late 18th century, which was partly reversed by his successors. From the 16th century, most if not all Habsburgs spoke French as well as German, and many also spoke Italian.[citation needed] Ferdinand I, Maximilian II and Rudolf II addressed the Bohemian Assembly in Czech, even though it is not clear that they were fluent. By contrast, there is little evidence that later Habsburgs in the 17th and 18th centuries spoke Czech, with the probable exception of Ferdinand III who made several stays in Bohemia and appears to have spoken Czech while there. In the 19th century, Francis I had notions of Czech, and Ferdinand I spoke it decently.[36] Maximilian II spoke Spanish, Latin, Hungarian and Italian in addition to French and German and his above-mentioned notions of Czech. Maria Theresa spoke German, Italian, French, Spanish, Latin, and added Hungarian before she became Empress.[37]

Franz Joseph received a bilingual early education in French and German, then added Czech and Hungarian and later Italian and Polish. He also learned Latin and Greek.[38] Even so, he viewed himself as German, and once wrote to Napoleon III "Nein, ich bin ein Deutscher Fürst".[39] After the end of the Habsburg Monarchy, Otto von Habsburg was fluent in English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese.[40]

Habsburg Castle, Aargau, Switzerland

Graz Castle [de]

Linz Castle

Hofburg Palace, Vienna

Hofburg, Innsbruck

Old Laxenburg Castle

Palace of Charles V, Granada

Palace of Margaret of Austria in Mechelen

Prague Castle

Bratislava Castle

Royal Palace of Milan

Royal Palace of Naples

El Escorial Palace near Madrid

Ambras Castle, Innsbruck

Neugebäude Palace near Vienna

Buda Castle

Royal Palace of Gödöllő near Budapest

Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna

Hetzendorf Palace, Vienna

Palace of Charles of Lorraine in Brussels

Royal Villa of Monza

Habsburg Hunting Palace in Cieszyn, Poland

Habsburg Palace in Żywiec, Poland

Palais Erzherzog Wilhelm in Vienna

Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl, Austria

Miramare Castle, Trieste

Villa Wartholz, Reichenau an der Rax

Hermesvilla in Vienna

Konopiště Castle near Benešov, Czechia

Achilleion Palace in Corfu

Schloss Wilhelminenberg, Vienna

Casa Austria (Villa Swoboda [de]) outside Salzburg

The Habsburgs' monarchical positions included:

Before Rudolph rose to German king, the Habsburgs were Counts of Baden in what is today southwestern Germany and Switzerland.[43]

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 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.

The abdications of Charles V in 1556 ended his formal authority over Ferdinand and made him suo jure ruler in Austria, Bohemia, Hungary, as well as Holy Roman Emperor.

Ferdinand's inheritance had been split in 1564 among his children, with Maximilian taking the Imperial crown and his younger brother Archduke Charles II ruling over 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). Charles's son and successor 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.

Habsburg Spain was a personal union between the Crowns of Castile and Aragon; Aragon was itself divided into the Kingdoms of Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Majorca, Naples, Sicily, Malta and Sardinia.[47] From 1581, they were kings of Portugal until they renounced this title in the 1668 Treaty of Lisbon. They were also Dukes of Milan, Lord of the Americas, and holder of multiple titles from territories within the Habsburg Netherlands. A full listing can be seen here.

The War of the Spanish Succession took place after the extinction of the Spanish Habsburg line, to determine the inheritance of Charles II.

Charles the Bold controlled not only Burgundy (both dukedom and county) but also Flanders and the broader Burgundian Netherlands. Frederick III managed to secure the marriage of Charles's only daughter, Mary of Burgundy, to his son Maximilian. The wedding took place on the evening of 16 August 1477, after the death of Charles.[48] 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.

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 War of the Austrian Succession took place after the extinction of the male line of the Austrian Habsburg line upon the death of Charles VI. The direct Habsburg line itself became totally extinct with the death of Maria Theresa of Austria, when it was followed by the House of Lorraine, styled of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Queen Maria Christina of Austria of Spain, great-granddaughter of Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor above. Wife of Alfonso XII of Spain and mother of Alfonso XIII of the House of Bourbon. Alfonso XIII's wife Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg was descended from King George I of Great Britain from the Habsburg Leopold Line {above}.

The House of Habsburg-Lorraine retained Austria and attached possessions after the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire; see below.

A son of Leopold II was Archduke Rainer of Austria whose wife was from the House of Savoy; a daughter Adelaide, Queen of Sardina was the wife of King Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy, and Sardinia and King of Italy. Their Children married into the Royal Houses of Bonaparte; Saxe-Coburg and Gotha {Bragança} {Portugal}; Savoy {Spain}; and the Dukedoms of Montferrat and Chablis.

(→Family Tree)

Francis Stephen assigned the grand duchy of Tuscany to his second son Peter Leopold, who in turn assigned it to his second son upon his accession as Holy Roman Emperor. Tuscany remained the domain of this cadet branch of the family until Italian unification.

The duchy of Modena was assigned to a minor branch of the family by the Congress of Vienna. It was lost to Italian unification. The Dukes named their line the House of Austria-Este, as they were descended from the daughter of the last D'Este Duke of Modena.

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 favor.

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.

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 Campanas, Querétaro, in 1867 by the republican forces of Benito Juárez.

Charles I was expelled from his domains after World War I and the empire was abolished.[43]

This gallery only features portraits believed to be based on likeness. It does not include possibly imaginary depictions, such as those of early Habsburg rulers created by Anton Boys for Archduke Ferdinand II in the late 16th century. It also does not display family members who failed to reach adult age or did not play any historically significant role, including most of those born in the late 19th and 20th century in line with the erosion of the Habsburg family's historical significance after World War I.

Individuals are listed by chronological order of birth. The title of Archduke/Archduchess belonged by birthright to all Austrian Habsburgs, and is generally omitted unless the individual used no other title.

King Rudolf I (1218-1291)

Duke Rudolf IV (1339-1365)

King Albert II (1397-1439)

Emperor Frederick III (1415-1493)

Sigismund, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1427-1496)

King Ladislaus the Posthumous (1440-1457)

Emperor Maximilian I (1459-1519)

Kunigunde of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1465-1520)

Philip the Handsome, King of Castile (1478-1506)

Margaret of Austria, Duchess of Savoy (1480-1530)

Eleanor of Austria, Queen of Portugal then of France (1498-1558)

Emperor Charles V (1500-1558)

Isabella of Austria, Queen of Denmark, Norway and Sweden (1501-1526)

Emperor Ferdinand I (1503-1564)

Mary of Hungary, Governor of the Netherlands (1505-1558)

George of Austria, Prince-Bishop of Liège (1505-1557)

Margaret of Parma (1522-1586)

Elizabeth of Austria, Queen of Poland (1526–1545)

King Philip II (1527-1598)

Emperor Maximilian II (1527-1576)

Maria of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1528-1603)

Anna of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1528-1590)

Ferdinand II, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1529-1595)

Maria of Austria, Duchess of Jülich-Cleves-Berg (1531-1581)

Magdalena of Austria, abbess of Hall in Tirol (1532-1590)

Catherine of Austria, Queen of Poland (1533-1572)

Eleanor of Austria, Duchess of Mantua (1534-1594)

Joanna of Austria, Princess of Portugal (1535-1573)

Barbara of Austria, Duchess of Ferrara (1539-1572)

Charles II, ruler of Inner Austria (1540-1590)

Carlos, Prince of Asturias (1545-1568)

Joanna of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1547-1578)

John of Austria (1547-1578)

Anna of Austria, Queen of Spain (1549-1580)

Emperor Rudolf II (1552-1612)

Ernest of Austria, ruler of Inner Austria, governor of the Spanish Netherlands (1553-1595)

Elisabeth of Austria, Queen of France (1554-1592)

Emperor Matthias (1557-1619)

Cardinal Andrew of Austria (1558-1600)

Maximilian III, ruler of Further Austria (1558-1618)

Albert (VII), ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1559-1621)

Charles of Austria, Margrave of Burgau (1560-1618)

Isabella Clara Eugenia, ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1566-1633)

Margaret of Austria, poor Clare (1567–1633)

Catalina Micaela of Spain, Duchess of Savoy (1567-1597)

Anne of Austria, Queen of Poland (1573-1598)

Maria Christina, Princess of Transylvania (1574-1621)

King Philip III (1578-1621)

Emperor Ferdinand II (1578-1637)

Eleanor of Austria, nun in Hall in Tirol (1582–1620)

Maximilian Ernest of Austria, Coadjutor of the Teutonic Order (1583-1616)

Maria of Austria, nun in Innsbrück (1584–1649)

Margaret of Austria, Queen of Spain (1584-1611)

Anna of Tyrol, Holy Roman Empress (1585-1618)

Leopold V, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1586-1632)

Constance of Austria, Queen of Poland (1588-1631)

Maria Maddalena of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1589-1631)

Charles of Austria, Bishop of Breslau (1590-1624)

Anne of Austria, Queen of France (1601-1666)

King Philip IV (1605-1665)

Maria Anna of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1606-1646)

Infante Carlos of Spain (1607–1632)

Emperor Ferdinand III (1608-1657)

Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand of Austria (1609 or 1610-1641)

Maria Anna, Electress of Bavaria (1610-1665)

Cecilia Renata of Austria, Queen of Poland (1611-1644)

Leopold Wilhelm of Austria (1614-1662)

Ferdinand Charles, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1628-1662)

John Joseph of Austria (1629-1679)

Isabella Clara of Austria, Duchess of Mantua, Montferrat, Nevers, Mayenne and Rethel (1629-1685)

Sigismund Francis, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1630-1665)

Maria Leopoldine of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1632-1649)

Ferdinand IV, King of the Romans (1633-1654)

Mariana of Austria, Queen of Spain (1634-1696)

Maria Theresa, Queen of France (1638-1683)

Emperor Leopold I (1640-1705)

Margaret Theresa of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1651-1673)

Eleonore of Austria, Queen of Poland (1653-1697)

Claudia Felicitas of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1653-1676)

Maria Anna Josepha of Austria, Electress of the Palatinate (1654-1689)

King Charles II (1661-1700)

Maria Antonia of Austria, Electress of Bavaria (1669-1692)

Emperor Joseph I (1678-1711)

Maria Elisabeth of Austria, governor of the Austrian Netherlands (1680-1741)

Maria Anna of Austria, Queen of Portugal (1683-1754)

Emperor Charles VI (1685-1740)

Maria Magdalena of Austria (1689–1743)

Maria Josepha of Austria, Queen of Poland (1699-1757)

Maria Amalia, Holy Roman Empress (1701-1756)

Maria Theresa of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1717-1780)

Cognatic:

The House of Habsburg (/ˈhæpsbɜːrɡ/; German: [ˈhaːpsbʊʁk]; alternatively spelled Hapsburg in English; German: Haus Habsburg, Spanish: Casa de Habsburgo, Hungarian: Habsburg-család), also House of Austria (German: Haus Österreich, Spanish: Casa de Austria),[3] was one of the most prominent royal houses of Europe in the 2nd millennium.

The house takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built in the 1020s in present-day Switzerland by Radbot of Klettgau, who named his fortress Habsburg. His grandson Otto II was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "Count of Habsburg" to his title. In 1273, Count Radbot's seventh-generation descendant Rudolph of Habsburg was elected King of the Romans. Taking advantage of the extinction of the Babenbergs and of his victory over Ottokar II of Bohemia at the battle on the Marchfeld in 1278, he subsequently moved the family's power base to Vienna, where the Habsburgs ruled until 1918.

The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs from 1440 until their extinction in the male line in 1740 and, after the death of Francis I, from 1765 until its dissolution in 1806. The house also produced kings of Bohemia, Hungary, Croatia, Spain, Portugal and Galicia-Lodomeria, with their respective colonies; rulers of several principalities in the Low Countries and Italy; and in the 19th century, emperors of Austria and of Austria-Hungary as well as one emperor of Mexico. The family split several times into parallel branches, most consequentially in the mid-16th century between its Spanish and Austrian branches following the abdication of Charles V. Although they ruled distinct territories, the different branches nevertheless maintained close relations and frequently intermarried.

The house of Habsburg still exists and owns the Austrian branch of the Order of the Golden Fleece and the Imperial and Royal Order of Saint George. As of early 2021, the head of the family is Karl von Habsburg.

The origins of Habsburg Castle's name 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.[4][5][6]

The Habsburg name was not continuously used by the family members, since they often emphasized their more prestigious princely titles. The dynasty was thus long known as the "house of Austria". Complementarily, in some circumstances the family members were identified by their place of birth. Charles V was known in his youth after his birthplace as Charles of Ghent. When he became king of Spain he was known as Charles of Spain, and after he was elected emperor, as Charles V (in French, Charles Quint).

In Spain, the dynasty was known as the Casa de Austria, including illegitimate sons such as John of Austria and John Joseph of Austria. The arms displayed in their simplest form were those of Austria, which the Habsburgs had made their own, at times impaled with the arms of the Duchy of Burgundy (ancient).

After Maria Theresa married Duke Francis Stephen of Lorraine, the idea of "Habsburg" as associated with ancestral Austrian rulership was used to show that the old dynasty continued as did all its inherited rights. When Francis I became Emperor of Austria, he adopted the old shield of Habsburg in his personal arms, together with Austria and Lorraine. This also reinforced the "Germanness" of the (French-speaking) Austrian Emperor and his claim to rule in Germany, not least against the Prussian Kings. Some younger sons who had no prospects of the throne were given the personal title of "count of Habsburg".

The surname of more recent members of the family such as Otto von Habsburg and Karl von Habsburg is taken to be "von Habsburg" or more completely "von Habsburg-Lothringen". Princes and members of the house use the tripartite arms adopted in the 18th century by Francis Stephen.

Timeline

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 forthwith farther back as the medieval Adalrich, Duke of Alsace, from the Etichonids from which Habsburg derives. His grandson Radbot of Klettgau founded the Habsburg Castle. That castle was the family seat during most of the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.

The Habsburgs expanded their influence through arranged marriages and incestuous relations with family royalty 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.[7][8]

By the second half of the 13th century, count Rudolph IV (1218–1291) had become an influential territorial lord in the area between the Vosges Mountains and Lake Constance. On 1 October 1273, he was elected as a compromise candidate as King of the Romans and received the name Rudolph I of Germany.[7] He then led a coalition against king Ottokar II of Bohemia who had taken advantage of the Great Interregnum in order to expand southwards, taking over the respective inheritances of the Babenberg (Austria, Styria, Savinja) and of the Spanheim (Carinthia and Carniola). In 1278, Rudolph and his allies defeated and killed Ottokar at the Battle of Marchfeld, and the lands he had acquired reverted to the German crown. With the Georgenberg Pact of 1286, Rudolph secured for his family the duchies of Austria and Styria. The southern portions of Ottokar's former realm, Carinthia, Carniola, and Savinja, went to Rudolph's allies from the House of Gorizia.[9][10]

Following Rudolph's death in 1291, Albert I's assassination in 1308, and Frederick the Fair's failure to secure the German/Imperial crown for himself, the Habsburgs temporarily lost their supremacy in the Empire. In the early 14th century they also focused on the Kingdom of Bohemia. After Václav III’s death on 4 August 1306, there were no male heirs remaining in the Přemyslid dynasty. Habsburg scion Rudolph I was then elected but only lasted a year. The Bohemian kingship was an elected position,[11] and the Habsburgs were only able to secure it on a hereditary basis much later in 1626, following their submission of the Czech lands during the Thirty Years' War. After 1307, subsequent Habsburg attempts to gain the Bohemian crown were frustrated first by Henry of Bohemia (a member of the House of Gorizia) and then by the House of Luxembourg.

Instead, they were able to expand southwards: in 1311, they took over Savinja; after the death of Henry in 1335, they assumed power in Carniola and Carinthia; and in 1369, they succeeded his daughter Margaret in Tyrol. After the death of Albert III of Gorizia in 1374, they gained a foothold at Pazin in central Istria, followed by Trieste in 1382. Meanwhile, the original home territories of the Habsburgs in what is now Switzerland, including the Aargau with Habsburg Castle, were lost in the 14th century to the expanding Swiss Confederacy after the battles of Morgarten (1315) and Sempach (1386). Habsburg Castle itself was finally lost to the Swiss in 1415.

Rudolf IV's brothers Albert III and Leopold III ignored his efforts to preserve the integrity of the family domains, and enacted the separation of the so-called Albertinian and Leopoldian family lines on 25 September 1379 by the Treaty of Neuberg. The former would maintain Austria proper (then called Niederösterreich but comprising modern Lower Austria and most of Upper Austria), while the latter would rule over lands then labeled Oberösterreich, namely Inner Austria (Innerösterreich) comprising Styria, Carinthia and Carniola, and Further Austria (Vorderösterreich) consisting of Tyrol and the western Habsburg lands in Alsace and Swabia.[7]

By marrying Elisabeth of Luxembourg, the daughter of Emperor Sigismund in 1437, Duke Albert V of the Albertine line (1397–1439) became the ruler of Bohemia and Hungary, again expanding the family's political horizons. The next year, Albert was crowned as King of the Romans, known as such as Albert II. Following his early death in a battle against the Ottomans in 1439 and that of his son Ladislaus Postumus in 1457, the Habsburgs lost Bohemia once more as well as Hungary, for several decades. However, with the extinction of the House of Celje in 1456 and the House of Wallsee-Enns in 1466/1483, they managed to absorb significant secular enclaves within their territories, and create a contiguous domain stretching from the border with Bohemia to the Adriatic sea.

After the death of Leopold's eldest son William in 1406, the Leopoldian line was further split among his brothers into the Inner Austrian territory under Ernest the Iron and a Tyrolean/Further Austrian line under Frederick of the empty pockets. In 1440, Ernest's son Frederick III was chosen by the electoral college to succeed Albert II as the king. Several Habsburg kings had attempted to gain the imperial dignity 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.[7]

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 until 1806.[7]

Through the forged document called privilegium maius (1358/59), Duke Rudolf IV (1339–1365) introduced the title of Archduke to place the Habsburgs on a par with the Prince-electors of the Empire, since Emperor Charles IV had omitted to give them the electoral dignity in his Golden Bull of 1356. Charles, however, refused to recognize the title, as did his immediate successors.

Duke Ernest the Iron and his descendants unilaterally assumed the title "archduke". That title was only officially recognized in 1453 by Emperor Frederick III, himself a Habsburg.[12] Frederick 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 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, apparently only started to use the title after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy in 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. 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.

In 1457 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 favor of Frederick's son Maximilian I.

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. Frederick's aim was to make Austria a united country, stretching from the Rhine to the Mur and Leitha.[7]

On the external front, one of Frederick's main achievements was the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), in which he coerced Charles the Bold of Burgundy to give his daughter Mary of Burgundy as wife to Frederick's son Maximilian.[7] 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 favor of Philip in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493.[13]

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. Emperor Charles V would be the last to be crowned by the Pope himself, at Bologna in 1530.[13]

Maximilian's rule (1493–1519) was a time of dramatic expansion for the Habsburgs. In 1497, Maximilian's son Philip, known as the Handsome or the Fair, married Joanna of Castile, also known as Joan the Mad, heiress of the Castile. Phillip and Joan had six children, the eldest of whom became Emperor Charles V and ruled the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon (including their colonies in the New World), Southern Italy, Austria, and the Low Countries.[14]

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 Louis's sister Anna. The wedding was celebrated in grand style on 22 July 1515. All these 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 the latter's designs were ultimately successful: upon Louis's death in battle in 1526, Ferdinand became king of Bohemia and Hungary.

The Habsburg dynasty achieved its highest position when Charles V was elected Holy Roman Emperor. Much of Charles's reign was dedicated to the fight against Protestantism, which led to its eradication throughout vast areas under Habsburg control.

After the abdication of Charles V in 1556, the Habsburg dynasty split into the branch of the Austrian (or German) Habsburgs, led by Ferdinand, and the branch of the Spanish Habsburgs, initially led by Charles's son Philip.[15] Ferdinand I, King of Bohemia, Hungary,[16] and archduke of Austria in the name of his brother Charles V became suo jure monarch as well as the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperor (designated as successor already in 1531). Philip became King of Spain and its colonial empire as Philip II, and ruler of the Habsburg domains in Italy and the Low Countries. The Spanish Habsburgs also ruled Portugal for a time, known there as the Philippine dynasty (1580–1640).

The Seventeen Provinces and the Duchy of Milan were in personal union under the King of Spain, but remained part of the Holy Roman Empire. Furthermore, the Spanish king had claims on Hungary and Bohemia. In the secret Oñate treaty of 29 July 1617, the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs settled their mutual claims.

The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by frequent consanguineous marriages, resulting in a cumulatively deleterious effect on their gene pool. Health impairments due to inbreeding including epilepsy, insanity and death. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests inbreeding may have played a factor in their extinction.[17] Numerous members of the family showed specific facial deformities: an enlarged lower jaw with an extended chin known as mandibular prognathism or "Habsburg jaw", a large nose with hump and hanging tip ("Habsburg nose"), and an everted lower lip ("Habsburg lip"). The latter two are signs of maxillary deficiency. A 2019 study found that the degree of mandibular prognasthism in the Habsburg family shows a statistically significant correlation with the degree of inbreeding. A correlation between maxillary deficiency and degree of inbreeding was also present but was not statistically significant.[18][19] Other scientific studies, however, dispute the ideas of any linkage between fertility and consanguinity.[20]

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".[21][17]

The death of Charles II of Spain in 1700 led to the War of the Spanish Succession, and that of Emperor Charles VI in 1740 led to the War of the Austrian Succession. In the former, the House of Bourbon won the conflict and put a final end to the Habsburg rule in Spain. The latter, however, was won by Maria Theresa and led to the succession of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Haus Habsburg-Lothringen) becoming the new main branch of the dynasty, in the person of Maria Theresa's son, Joseph II. This new House was created by the marriage between Maria Theresa of Habsburg and Francis Stephan, Duke of Lorraine[22] (both of them were great-grandchildren of Habsburg emperor Ferdinand III, but from different empresses) being this new House a cadet branch of the female line of the House of Habsburg and the male line of the House of Lorraine. It is thought that extensive intra-family marriages within Spanish and Austrian lines contributed to the extinction of the main line.

On 6 August 1806, Emperor Francis I dissolved the Holy Roman Empire under pressure from Napoleon's reorganization of Germany. In anticipation of the loss of his title of Holy Roman Emperor, Francis had 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.[24] Under this arrangement, the Hungarians referred to their ruler as king and never emperor (see k. u. k.). 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 of Austria (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 that 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, on 31 May 1961 renounced all claims to the throne.

In the interwar period, the House of Habsburg was a vehement opponent of National Socialism and Communism. In Germany, Adolf Hitler diametrically opposed the centuries-old Habsburg principles of largely allowing local communities under their rule to maintain traditional ethnic, religious and language practices, and he bristled with hatred against the Habsburg family. During the Second World War there was a strong Habsburg resistance movement in Central Europe, which was radically persecuted by the Nazis and the Gestapo. The unofficial leader of these groups was Otto von Habsburg, who campaigned against the Nazis and for a free Central Europe in France and the United States. Most of the resistance fighters, such as Heinrich Maier, who successfully passed on production sites and plans for V-2 rockets, Tiger tanks and aircraft to the Allies, were executed. The Habsburg family played a leading role in the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Communist Eastern Bloc.[25][26][27][28][29]

As they accumulated crowns and titles, the Habsburgs developed a unique family tradition of multilingualism that evolved over the centuries. The Holy Roman Empire had been multilingual from the start, even though most of its emperors were native German-speakers.[30] The language issue within the Empire became gradually more salient as the non-religious use of Latin declined and that of national languages gained prominence during the High Middle Ages. Emperor Charles IV of Luxembourg was known to be fluent in Czech, French, German, Italian and Latin.[31]

The last section of his Golden Bull of 1356 specifies that the Empire's secular prince-electors "should be instructed in the varieties of the different dialects and languages" and that "since they are expected in all likelihood to have naturally acquired the German language, and to have been taught it from their infancy, [they] shall be instructed in the grammar of the Italian and Slavic tongues, beginning with the seventh year of their age so that, before the fourteenth year of their age, they may be learned in the same".[32] In the early 15th century, Strasbourg-based chronicler Jakob Twinger von Königshofen asserted that Charlemagne had mastered six languages, even though he had a preference for German.[30]:306

In the early years of the family's ascendancy, neither Rudolf I nor Albert I appear to have spoken French.[30]:278 By contrast, Charles V of Habsburg is well known some having been fluent in several languages. He was native in French and also knew Dutch from his youth in Flanders. He later added some Castilian Spanish, which he was required to learn by the Castilian Cortes Generales. He could also speak some Basque, acquired by the influence of the Basque secretaries serving in the royal court.[33] He gained a decent command of German following the Imperial election of 1519, though he never spoke it as well as French.[34] A witticism sometimes attributed to Charles was: "I speak Spanish/Latin [depending on the source] to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse."[35]

Latin was the administrative language of the Empire until the aggressive promotion of German by Joseph II in the late 18th century, which was partly reversed by his successors. From the 16th century, most if not all Habsburgs spoke French as well as German, and many also spoke Italian.[citation needed] Ferdinand I, Maximilian II and Rudolf II addressed the Bohemian Assembly in Czech, even though it is not clear that they were fluent. By contrast, there is little evidence that later Habsburgs in the 17th and 18th centuries spoke Czech, with the probable exception of Ferdinand III who made several stays in Bohemia and appears to have spoken Czech while there. In the 19th century, Francis I had notions of Czech, and Ferdinand I spoke it decently.[36] Maximilian II spoke Spanish, Latin, Hungarian and Italian in addition to French and German and his above-mentioned notions of Czech. Maria Theresa spoke German, Italian, French, Spanish, Latin, and added Hungarian before she became Empress.[37]

Franz Joseph received a bilingual early education in French and German, then added Czech and Hungarian and later Italian and Polish. He also learned Latin and Greek.[38] Even so, he viewed himself as German, and once wrote to Napoleon III "Nein, ich bin ein Deutscher Fürst".[39] After the end of the Habsburg Monarchy, Otto von Habsburg was fluent in English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese.[40]

Habsburg Castle, Aargau, Switzerland

Graz Castle [de]

Linz Castle

Hofburg Palace, Vienna

Hofburg, Innsbruck

Old Laxenburg Castle

Palace of Charles V, Granada

Palace of Margaret of Austria in Mechelen

Prague Castle

Bratislava Castle

Royal Palace of Milan

Royal Palace of Naples

El Escorial Palace near Madrid

Ambras Castle, Innsbruck

Neugebäude Palace near Vienna

Buda Castle

Royal Palace of Gödöllő near Budapest

Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna

Hetzendorf Palace, Vienna

Palace of Charles of Lorraine in Brussels

Royal Villa of Monza

Habsburg Hunting Palace in Cieszyn, Poland

Habsburg Palace in Żywiec, Poland

Palais Erzherzog Wilhelm in Vienna

Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl, Austria

Miramare Castle, Trieste

Villa Wartholz, Reichenau an der Rax

Hermesvilla in Vienna

Konopiště Castle near Benešov, Czechia

Achilleion Palace in Corfu

Schloss Wilhelminenberg, Vienna

Casa Austria (Villa Swoboda [de]) outside Salzburg

The Habsburgs' monarchical positions included:

Before Rudolph rose to German king, the Habsburgs were Counts of Baden in what is today southwestern Germany and Switzerland.[43]

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 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.

The abdications of Charles V in 1556 ended his formal authority over Ferdinand and made him suo jure ruler in Austria, Bohemia, Hungary, as well as Holy Roman Emperor.

Ferdinand's inheritance had been split in 1564 among his children, with Maximilian taking the Imperial crown and his younger brother Archduke Charles II ruling over 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). Charles's son and successor 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.

Habsburg Spain was a personal union between the Crowns of Castile and Aragon; Aragon was itself divided into the Kingdoms of Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Majorca, Naples, Sicily, Malta and Sardinia.[47] From 1581, they were kings of Portugal until they renounced this title in the 1668 Treaty of Lisbon. They were also Dukes of Milan, Lord of the Americas, and holder of multiple titles from territories within the Habsburg Netherlands. A full listing can be seen here.

The War of the Spanish Succession took place after the extinction of the Spanish Habsburg line, to determine the inheritance of Charles II.

Charles the Bold controlled not only Burgundy (both dukedom and county) but also Flanders and the broader Burgundian Netherlands. Frederick III managed to secure the marriage of Charles's only daughter, Mary of Burgundy, to his son Maximilian. The wedding took place on the evening of 16 August 1477, after the death of Charles.[48] 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.

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 War of the Austrian Succession took place after the extinction of the male line of the Austrian Habsburg line upon the death of Charles VI. The direct Habsburg line itself became totally extinct with the death of Maria Theresa of Austria, when it was followed by the House of Lorraine, styled of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Queen Maria Christina of Austria of Spain, great-granddaughter of Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor above. Wife of Alfonso XII of Spain and mother of Alfonso XIII of the House of Bourbon. Alfonso XIII's wife Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg was descended from King George I of Great Britain from the Habsburg Leopold Line {above}.

The House of Habsburg-Lorraine retained Austria and attached possessions after the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire; see below.

A son of Leopold II was Archduke Rainer of Austria whose wife was from the House of Savoy; a daughter Adelaide, Queen of Sardina was the wife of King Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy, and Sardinia and King of Italy. Their Children married into the Royal Houses of Bonaparte; Saxe-Coburg and Gotha {Bragança} {Portugal}; Savoy {Spain}; and the Dukedoms of Montferrat and Chablis.

(→Family Tree)

Francis Stephen assigned the grand duchy of Tuscany to his second son Peter Leopold, who in turn assigned it to his second son upon his accession as Holy Roman Emperor. Tuscany remained the domain of this cadet branch of the family until Italian unification.

The duchy of Modena was assigned to a minor branch of the family by the Congress of Vienna. It was lost to Italian unification. The Dukes named their line the House of Austria-Este, as they were descended from the daughter of the last D'Este Duke of Modena.

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 favor.

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.

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 Campanas, Querétaro, in 1867 by the republican forces of Benito Juárez.

Charles I was expelled from his domains after World War I and the empire was abolished.[43]

This gallery only features portraits believed to be based on likeness. It does not include possibly imaginary depictions, such as those of early Habsburg rulers created by Anton Boys for Archduke Ferdinand II in the late 16th century. It also does not display family members who failed to reach adult age or did not play any historically significant role, including most of those born in the late 19th and 20th century in line with the erosion of the Habsburg family's historical significance after World War I.

Individuals are listed by chronological order of birth. The title of Archduke/Archduchess belonged by birthright to all Austrian Habsburgs, and is generally omitted unless the individual used no other title.

King Rudolf I (1218-1291)

Duke Rudolf IV (1339-1365)

King Albert II (1397-1439)

Emperor Frederick III (1415-1493)

Sigismund, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1427-1496)

King Ladislaus the Posthumous (1440-1457)

Emperor Maximilian I (1459-1519)

Kunigunde of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1465-1520)

Philip the Handsome, King of Castile (1478-1506)

Margaret of Austria, Duchess of Savoy (1480-1530)

Eleanor of Austria, Queen of Portugal then of France (1498-1558)

Emperor Charles V (1500-1558)

Isabella of Austria, Queen of Denmark, Norway and Sweden (1501-1526)

Emperor Ferdinand I (1503-1564)

Mary of Hungary, Governor of the Netherlands (1505-1558)

George of Austria, Prince-Bishop of Liège (1505-1557)

Margaret of Parma (1522-1586)

Elizabeth of Austria, Queen of Poland (1526–1545)

King Philip II (1527-1598)

Emperor Maximilian II (1527-1576)

Maria of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1528-1603)

Anna of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1528-1590)

Ferdinand II, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1529-1595)

Maria of Austria, Duchess of Jülich-Cleves-Berg (1531-1581)

Magdalena of Austria, abbess of Hall in Tirol (1532-1590)

Catherine of Austria, Queen of Poland (1533-1572)

Eleanor of Austria, Duchess of Mantua (1534-1594)

Joanna of Austria, Princess of Portugal (1535-1573)

Barbara of Austria, Duchess of Ferrara (1539-1572)

Charles II, ruler of Inner Austria (1540-1590)

Carlos, Prince of Asturias (1545-1568)

Joanna of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1547-1578)

John of Austria (1547-1578)

Anna of Austria, Queen of Spain (1549-1580)

Emperor Rudolf II (1552-1612)

Ernest of Austria, ruler of Inner Austria, governor of the Spanish Netherlands (1553-1595)

Elisabeth of Austria, Queen of France (1554-1592)

Emperor Matthias (1557-1619)

Cardinal Andrew of Austria (1558-1600)

Maximilian III, ruler of Further Austria (1558-1618)

Albert (VII), ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1559-1621)

Charles of Austria, Margrave of Burgau (1560-1618)

Isabella Clara Eugenia, ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1566-1633)

Margaret of Austria, poor Clare (1567–1633)

Catalina Micaela of Spain, Duchess of Savoy (1567-1597)

Anne of Austria, Queen of Poland (1573-1598)

Maria Christina, Princess of Transylvania (1574-1621)

King Philip III (1578-1621)

Emperor Ferdinand II (1578-1637)

Eleanor of Austria, nun in Hall in Tirol (1582–1620)

Maximilian Ernest of Austria, Coadjutor of the Teutonic Order (1583-1616)

Maria of Austria, nun in Innsbrück (1584–1649)

Margaret of Austria, Queen of Spain (1584-1611)

Anna of Tyrol, Holy Roman Empress (1585-1618)

Leopold V, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1586-1632)

Constance of Austria, Queen of Poland (1588-1631)

Maria Maddalena of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1589-1631)

Charles of Austria, Bishop of Breslau (1590-1624)

Anne of Austria, Queen of France (1601-1666)

King Philip IV (1605-1665)

Maria Anna of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1606-1646)

Infante Carlos of Spain (1607–1632)

Emperor Ferdinand III (1608-1657)

Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand of Austria (1609 or 1610-1641)

Maria Anna, Electress of Bavaria (1610-1665)

Cecilia Renata of Austria, Queen of Poland (1611-1644)

Leopold Wilhelm of Austria (1614-1662)

Ferdinand Charles, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1628-1662)

John Joseph of Austria (1629-1679)

Isabella Clara of Austria, Duchess of Mantua, Montferrat, Nevers, Mayenne and Rethel (1629-1685)

Sigismund Francis, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1630-1665)

Maria Leopoldine of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1632-1649)

Ferdinand IV, King of the Romans (1633-1654)

Mariana of Austria, Queen of Spain (1634-1696)

Maria Theresa, Queen of France (1638-1683)

Emperor Leopold I (1640-1705)

Margaret Theresa of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1651-1673)

Eleonore of Austria, Queen of Poland (1653-1697)

Claudia Felicitas of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1653-1676)

Maria Anna Josepha of Austria, Electress of the Palatinate (1654-1689)

King Charles II (1661-1700)

Maria Antonia of Austria, Electress of Bavaria (1669-1692)

Emperor Joseph I (1678-1711)

Maria Elisabeth of Austria, governor of the Austrian Netherlands (1680-1741)

Maria Anna of Austria, Queen of Portugal (1683-1754)

Emperor Charles VI (1685-1740)

Maria Magdalena of Austria (1689–1743)

Maria Josepha of Austria, Queen of Poland (1699-1757)

Maria Amalia, Holy Roman Empress (1701-1756)

Maria Theresa of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1717-1780)

Cognatic:

The House of Habsburg (/ˈhæpsbɜːrɡ/; German: [ˈhaːpsbʊʁk]; alternatively spelled Hapsburg in English; German: Haus Habsburg, Spanish: Casa de Habsburgo, Hungarian: Habsburg-család), also House of Austria (German: Haus Österreich, Spanish: Casa de Austria),[3] was one of the most prominent royal houses of Europe in the 2nd millennium.

The house takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built in the 1020s in present-day Switzerland by Radbot of Klettgau, who named his fortress Habsburg. His grandson Otto II was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "Count of Habsburg" to his title. In 1273, Count Radbot's seventh-generation descendant Rudolph of Habsburg was elected King of the Romans. Taking advantage of the extinction of the Babenbergs and of his victory over Ottokar II of Bohemia at the battle on the Marchfeld in 1278, he subsequently moved the family's power base to Vienna, where the Habsburgs ruled until 1918.

The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs from 1440 until their extinction in the male line in 1740 and, after the death of Francis I, from 1765 until its dissolution in 1806. The house also produced kings of Bohemia, Hungary, Croatia, Spain, Portugal and Galicia-Lodomeria, with their respective colonies; rulers of several principalities in the Low Countries and Italy; and in the 19th century, emperors of Austria and of Austria-Hungary as well as one emperor of Mexico. The family split several times into parallel branches, most consequentially in the mid-16th century between its Spanish and Austrian branches following the abdication of Charles V. Although they ruled distinct territories, the different branches nevertheless maintained close relations and frequently intermarried.

The house of Habsburg still exists and owns the Austrian branch of the Order of the Golden Fleece and the Imperial and Royal Order of Saint George. As of early 2021, the head of the family is Karl von Habsburg.

The origins of Habsburg Castle's name 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.[4][5][6]

The Habsburg name was not continuously used by the family members, since they often emphasized their more prestigious princely titles. The dynasty was thus long known as the "house of Austria". Complementarily, in some circumstances the family members were identified by their place of birth. Charles V was known in his youth after his birthplace as Charles of Ghent. When he became king of Spain he was known as Charles of Spain, and after he was elected emperor, as Charles V (in French, Charles Quint).

In Spain, the dynasty was known as the Casa de Austria, including illegitimate sons such as John of Austria and John Joseph of Austria. The arms displayed in their simplest form were those of Austria, which the Habsburgs had made their own, at times impaled with the arms of the Duchy of Burgundy (ancient).

After Maria Theresa married Duke Francis Stephen of Lorraine, the idea of "Habsburg" as associated with ancestral Austrian rulership was used to show that the old dynasty continued as did all its inherited rights. When Francis I became Emperor of Austria, he adopted the old shield of Habsburg in his personal arms, together with Austria and Lorraine. This also reinforced the "Germanness" of the (French-speaking) Austrian Emperor and his claim to rule in Germany, not least against the Prussian Kings. Some younger sons who had no prospects of the throne were given the personal title of "count of Habsburg".

The surname of more recent members of the family such as Otto von Habsburg and Karl von Habsburg is taken to be "von Habsburg" or more completely "von Habsburg-Lothringen". Princes and members of the house use the tripartite arms adopted in the 18th century by Francis Stephen.

Timeline

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 forthwith farther back as the medieval Adalrich, Duke of Alsace, from the Etichonids from which Habsburg derives. His grandson Radbot of Klettgau founded the Habsburg Castle. That castle was the family seat during most of the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.

The Habsburgs expanded their influence through arranged marriages and incestuous relations with family royalty 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.[7][8]

By the second half of the 13th century, count Rudolph IV (1218–1291) had become an influential territorial lord in the area between the Vosges Mountains and Lake Constance. On 1 October 1273, he was elected as a compromise candidate as King of the Romans and received the name Rudolph I of Germany.[7] He then led a coalition against king Ottokar II of Bohemia who had taken advantage of the Great Interregnum in order to expand southwards, taking over the respective inheritances of the Babenberg (Austria, Styria, Savinja) and of the Spanheim (Carinthia and Carniola). In 1278, Rudolph and his allies defeated and killed Ottokar at the Battle of Marchfeld, and the lands he had acquired reverted to the German crown. With the Georgenberg Pact of 1286, Rudolph secured for his family the duchies of Austria and Styria. The southern portions of Ottokar's former realm, Carinthia, Carniola, and Savinja, went to Rudolph's allies from the House of Gorizia.[9][10]

Following Rudolph's death in 1291, Albert I's assassination in 1308, and Frederick the Fair's failure to secure the German/Imperial crown for himself, the Habsburgs temporarily lost their supremacy in the Empire. In the early 14th century they also focused on the Kingdom of Bohemia. After Václav III’s death on 4 August 1306, there were no male heirs remaining in the Přemyslid dynasty. Habsburg scion Rudolph I was then elected but only lasted a year. The Bohemian kingship was an elected position,[11] and the Habsburgs were only able to secure it on a hereditary basis much later in 1626, following their submission of the Czech lands during the Thirty Years' War. After 1307, subsequent Habsburg attempts to gain the Bohemian crown were frustrated first by Henry of Bohemia (a member of the House of Gorizia) and then by the House of Luxembourg.

Instead, they were able to expand southwards: in 1311, they took over Savinja; after the death of Henry in 1335, they assumed power in Carniola and Carinthia; and in 1369, they succeeded his daughter Margaret in Tyrol. After the death of Albert III of Gorizia in 1374, they gained a foothold at Pazin in central Istria, followed by Trieste in 1382. Meanwhile, the original home territories of the Habsburgs in what is now Switzerland, including the Aargau with Habsburg Castle, were lost in the 14th century to the expanding Swiss Confederacy after the battles of Morgarten (1315) and Sempach (1386). Habsburg Castle itself was finally lost to the Swiss in 1415.

Rudolf IV's brothers Albert III and Leopold III ignored his efforts to preserve the integrity of the family domains, and enacted the separation of the so-called Albertinian and Leopoldian family lines on 25 September 1379 by the Treaty of Neuberg. The former would maintain Austria proper (then called Niederösterreich but comprising modern Lower Austria and most of Upper Austria), while the latter would rule over lands then labeled Oberösterreich, namely Inner Austria (Innerösterreich) comprising Styria, Carinthia and Carniola, and Further Austria (Vorderösterreich) consisting of Tyrol and the western Habsburg lands in Alsace and Swabia.[7]

By marrying Elisabeth of Luxembourg, the daughter of Emperor Sigismund in 1437, Duke Albert V of the Albertine line (1397–1439) became the ruler of Bohemia and Hungary, again expanding the family's political horizons. The next year, Albert was crowned as King of the Romans, known as such as Albert II. Following his early death in a battle against the Ottomans in 1439 and that of his son Ladislaus Postumus in 1457, the Habsburgs lost Bohemia once more as well as Hungary, for several decades. However, with the extinction of the House of Celje in 1456 and the House of Wallsee-Enns in 1466/1483, they managed to absorb significant secular enclaves within their territories, and create a contiguous domain stretching from the border with Bohemia to the Adriatic sea.

After the death of Leopold's eldest son William in 1406, the Leopoldian line was further split among his brothers into the Inner Austrian territory under Ernest the Iron and a Tyrolean/Further Austrian line under Frederick of the empty pockets. In 1440, Ernest's son Frederick III was chosen by the electoral college to succeed Albert II as the king. Several Habsburg kings had attempted to gain the imperial dignity 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.[7]

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 until 1806.[7]

Through the forged document called privilegium maius (1358/59), Duke Rudolf IV (1339–1365) introduced the title of Archduke to place the Habsburgs on a par with the Prince-electors of the Empire, since Emperor Charles IV had omitted to give them the electoral dignity in his Golden Bull of 1356. Charles, however, refused to recognize the title, as did his immediate successors.

Duke Ernest the Iron and his descendants unilaterally assumed the title "archduke". That title was only officially recognized in 1453 by Emperor Frederick III, himself a Habsburg.[12] Frederick 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 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, apparently only started to use the title after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy in 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. 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.

In 1457 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 favor of Frederick's son Maximilian I.

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. Frederick's aim was to make Austria a united country, stretching from the Rhine to the Mur and Leitha.[7]

On the external front, one of Frederick's main achievements was the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), in which he coerced Charles the Bold of Burgundy to give his daughter Mary of Burgundy as wife to Frederick's son Maximilian.[7] 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 favor of Philip in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493.[13]

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. Emperor Charles V would be the last to be crowned by the Pope himself, at Bologna in 1530.[13]

Maximilian's rule (1493–1519) was a time of dramatic expansion for the Habsburgs. In 1497, Maximilian's son Philip, known as the Handsome or the Fair, married Joanna of Castile, also known as Joan the Mad, heiress of the Castile. Phillip and Joan had six children, the eldest of whom became Emperor Charles V and ruled the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon (including their colonies in the New World), Southern Italy, Austria, and the Low Countries.[14]

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 Louis's sister Anna. The wedding was celebrated in grand style on 22 July 1515. All these 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 the latter's designs were ultimately successful: upon Louis's death in battle in 1526, Ferdinand became king of Bohemia and Hungary.

The Habsburg dynasty achieved its highest position when Charles V was elected Holy Roman Emperor. Much of Charles's reign was dedicated to the fight against Protestantism, which led to its eradication throughout vast areas under Habsburg control.

After the abdication of Charles V in 1556, the Habsburg dynasty split into the branch of the Austrian (or German) Habsburgs, led by Ferdinand, and the branch of the Spanish Habsburgs, initially led by Charles's son Philip.[15] Ferdinand I, King of Bohemia, Hungary,[16] and archduke of Austria in the name of his brother Charles V became suo jure monarch as well as the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperor (designated as successor already in 1531). Philip became King of Spain and its colonial empire as Philip II, and ruler of the Habsburg domains in Italy and the Low Countries. The Spanish Habsburgs also ruled Portugal for a time, known there as the Philippine dynasty (1580–1640).

The Seventeen Provinces and the Duchy of Milan were in personal union under the King of Spain, but remained part of the Holy Roman Empire. Furthermore, the Spanish king had claims on Hungary and Bohemia. In the secret Oñate treaty of 29 July 1617, the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs settled their mutual claims.

The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by frequent consanguineous marriages, resulting in a cumulatively deleterious effect on their gene pool. Health impairments due to inbreeding including epilepsy, insanity and death. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests inbreeding may have played a factor in their extinction.[17] Numerous members of the family showed specific facial deformities: an enlarged lower jaw with an extended chin known as mandibular prognathism or "Habsburg jaw", a large nose with hump and hanging tip ("Habsburg nose"), and an everted lower lip ("Habsburg lip"). The latter two are signs of maxillary deficiency. A 2019 study found that the degree of mandibular prognasthism in the Habsburg family shows a statistically significant correlation with the degree of inbreeding. A correlation between maxillary deficiency and degree of inbreeding was also present but was not statistically significant.[18][19] Other scientific studies, however, dispute the ideas of any linkage between fertility and consanguinity.[20]

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".[21][17]

The death of Charles II of Spain in 1700 led to the War of the Spanish Succession, and that of Emperor Charles VI in 1740 led to the War of the Austrian Succession. In the former, the House of Bourbon won the conflict and put a final end to the Habsburg rule in Spain. The latter, however, was won by Maria Theresa and led to the succession of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Haus Habsburg-Lothringen) becoming the new main branch of the dynasty, in the person of Maria Theresa's son, Joseph II. This new House was created by the marriage between Maria Theresa of Habsburg and Francis Stephan, Duke of Lorraine[22] (both of them were great-grandchildren of Habsburg emperor Ferdinand III, but from different empresses) being this new House a cadet branch of the female line of the House of Habsburg and the male line of the House of Lorraine. It is thought that extensive intra-family marriages within Spanish and Austrian lines contributed to the extinction of the main line.

On 6 August 1806, Emperor Francis I dissolved the Holy Roman Empire under pressure from Napoleon's reorganization of Germany. In anticipation of the loss of his title of Holy Roman Emperor, Francis had 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.[24] Under this arrangement, the Hungarians referred to their ruler as king and never emperor (see k. u. k.). 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 of Austria (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 that 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, on 31 May 1961 renounced all claims to the throne.

In the interwar period, the House of Habsburg was a vehement opponent of National Socialism and Communism. In Germany, Adolf Hitler diametrically opposed the centuries-old Habsburg principles of largely allowing local communities under their rule to maintain traditional ethnic, religious and language practices, and he bristled with hatred against the Habsburg family. During the Second World War there was a strong Habsburg resistance movement in Central Europe, which was radically persecuted by the Nazis and the Gestapo. The unofficial leader of these groups was Otto von Habsburg, who campaigned against the Nazis and for a free Central Europe in France and the United States. Most of the resistance fighters, such as Heinrich Maier, who successfully passed on production sites and plans for V-2 rockets, Tiger tanks and aircraft to the Allies, were executed. The Habsburg family played a leading role in the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Communist Eastern Bloc.[25][26][27][28][29]

As they accumulated crowns and titles, the Habsburgs developed a unique family tradition of multilingualism that evolved over the centuries. The Holy Roman Empire had been multilingual from the start, even though most of its emperors were native German-speakers.[30] The language issue within the Empire became gradually more salient as the non-religious use of Latin declined and that of national languages gained prominence during the High Middle Ages. Emperor Charles IV of Luxembourg was known to be fluent in Czech, French, German, Italian and Latin.[31]

The last section of his Golden Bull of 1356 specifies that the Empire's secular prince-electors "should be instructed in the varieties of the different dialects and languages" and that "since they are expected in all likelihood to have naturally acquired the German language, and to have been taught it from their infancy, [they] shall be instructed in the grammar of the Italian and Slavic tongues, beginning with the seventh year of their age so that, before the fourteenth year of their age, they may be learned in the same".[32] In the early 15th century, Strasbourg-based chronicler Jakob Twinger von Königshofen asserted that Charlemagne had mastered six languages, even though he had a preference for German.[30]:306

In the early years of the family's ascendancy, neither Rudolf I nor Albert I appear to have spoken French.[30]:278 By contrast, Charles V of Habsburg is well known some having been fluent in several languages. He was native in French and also knew Dutch from his youth in Flanders. He later added some Castilian Spanish, which he was required to learn by the Castilian Cortes Generales. He could also speak some Basque, acquired by the influence of the Basque secretaries serving in the royal court.[33] He gained a decent command of German following the Imperial election of 1519, though he never spoke it as well as French.[34] A witticism sometimes attributed to Charles was: "I speak Spanish/Latin [depending on the source] to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse."[35]

Latin was the administrative language of the Empire until the aggressive promotion of German by Joseph II in the late 18th century, which was partly reversed by his successors. From the 16th century, most if not all Habsburgs spoke French as well as German, and many also spoke Italian.[citation needed] Ferdinand I, Maximilian II and Rudolf II addressed the Bohemian Assembly in Czech, even though it is not clear that they were fluent. By contrast, there is little evidence that later Habsburgs in the 17th and 18th centuries spoke Czech, with the probable exception of Ferdinand III who made several stays in Bohemia and appears to have spoken Czech while there. In the 19th century, Francis I had notions of Czech, and Ferdinand I spoke it decently.[36] Maximilian II spoke Spanish, Latin, Hungarian and Italian in addition to French and German and his above-mentioned notions of Czech. Maria Theresa spoke German, Italian, French, Spanish, Latin, and added Hungarian before she became Empress.[37]

Franz Joseph received a bilingual early education in French and German, then added Czech and Hungarian and later Italian and Polish. He also learned Latin and Greek.[38] Even so, he viewed himself as German, and once wrote to Napoleon III "Nein, ich bin ein Deutscher Fürst".[39] After the end of the Habsburg Monarchy, Otto von Habsburg was fluent in English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese.[40]

Habsburg Castle, Aargau, Switzerland

Graz Castle [de]

Linz Castle

Hofburg Palace, Vienna

Hofburg, Innsbruck

Old Laxenburg Castle

Palace of Charles V, Granada

Palace of Margaret of Austria in Mechelen

Prague Castle

Bratislava Castle

Royal Palace of Milan

Royal Palace of Naples

El Escorial Palace near Madrid

Ambras Castle, Innsbruck

Neugebäude Palace near Vienna

Buda Castle

Royal Palace of Gödöllő near Budapest

Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna

Hetzendorf Palace, Vienna

Palace of Charles of Lorraine in Brussels

Royal Villa of Monza

Habsburg Hunting Palace in Cieszyn, Poland

Habsburg Palace in Żywiec, Poland

Palais Erzherzog Wilhelm in Vienna

Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl, Austria

Miramare Castle, Trieste

Villa Wartholz, Reichenau an der Rax

Hermesvilla in Vienna

Konopiště Castle near Benešov, Czechia

Achilleion Palace in Corfu

Schloss Wilhelminenberg, Vienna

Casa Austria (Villa Swoboda [de]) outside Salzburg

The Habsburgs' monarchical positions included:

Before Rudolph rose to German king, the Habsburgs were Counts of Baden in what is today southwestern Germany and Switzerland.[43]

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 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.

The abdications of Charles V in 1556 ended his formal authority over Ferdinand and made him suo jure ruler in Austria, Bohemia, Hungary, as well as Holy Roman Emperor.

Ferdinand's inheritance had been split in 1564 among his children, with Maximilian taking the Imperial crown and his younger brother Archduke Charles II ruling over 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). Charles's son and successor 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.

Habsburg Spain was a personal union between the Crowns of Castile and Aragon; Aragon was itself divided into the Kingdoms of Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Majorca, Naples, Sicily, Malta and Sardinia.[47] From 1581, they were kings of Portugal until they renounced this title in the 1668 Treaty of Lisbon. They were also Dukes of Milan, Lord of the Americas, and holder of multiple titles from territories within the Habsburg Netherlands. A full listing can be seen here.

The War of the Spanish Succession took place after the extinction of the Spanish Habsburg line, to determine the inheritance of Charles II.

Charles the Bold controlled not only Burgundy (both dukedom and county) but also Flanders and the broader Burgundian Netherlands. Frederick III managed to secure the marriage of Charles's only daughter, Mary of Burgundy, to his son Maximilian. The wedding took place on the evening of 16 August 1477, after the death of Charles.[48] 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.

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 War of the Austrian Succession took place after the extinction of the male line of the Austrian Habsburg line upon the death of Charles VI. The direct Habsburg line itself became totally extinct with the death of Maria Theresa of Austria, when it was followed by the House of Lorraine, styled of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Queen Maria Christina of Austria of Spain, great-granddaughter of Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor above. Wife of Alfonso XII of Spain and mother of Alfonso XIII of the House of Bourbon. Alfonso XIII's wife Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg was descended from King George I of Great Britain from the Habsburg Leopold Line {above}.

The House of Habsburg-Lorraine retained Austria and attached possessions after the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire; see below.

A son of Leopold II was Archduke Rainer of Austria whose wife was from the House of Savoy; a daughter Adelaide, Queen of Sardina was the wife of King Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy, and Sardinia and King of Italy. Their Children married into the Royal Houses of Bonaparte; Saxe-Coburg and Gotha {Bragança} {Portugal}; Savoy {Spain}; and the Dukedoms of Montferrat and Chablis.

(→Family Tree)

Francis Stephen assigned the grand duchy of Tuscany to his second son Peter Leopold, who in turn assigned it to his second son upon his accession as Holy Roman Emperor. Tuscany remained the domain of this cadet branch of the family until Italian unification.

The duchy of Modena was assigned to a minor branch of the family by the Congress of Vienna. It was lost to Italian unification. The Dukes named their line the House of Austria-Este, as they were descended from the daughter of the last D'Este Duke of Modena.

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 favor.

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.

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 Campanas, Querétaro, in 1867 by the republican forces of Benito Juárez.

Charles I was expelled from his domains after World War I and the empire was abolished.[43]

This gallery only features portraits believed to be based on likeness. It does not include possibly imaginary depictions, such as those of early Habsburg rulers created by Anton Boys for Archduke Ferdinand II in the late 16th century. It also does not display family members who failed to reach adult age or did not play any historically significant role, including most of those born in the late 19th and 20th century in line with the erosion of the Habsburg family's historical significance after World War I.

Individuals are listed by chronological order of birth. The title of Archduke/Archduchess belonged by birthright to all Austrian Habsburgs, and is generally omitted unless the individual used no other title.

King Rudolf I (1218-1291)

Duke Rudolf IV (1339-1365)

King Albert II (1397-1439)

Emperor Frederick III (1415-1493)

Sigismund, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1427-1496)

King Ladislaus the Posthumous (1440-1457)

Emperor Maximilian I (1459-1519)

Kunigunde of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1465-1520)

Philip the Handsome, King of Castile (1478-1506)

Margaret of Austria, Duchess of Savoy (1480-1530)

Eleanor of Austria, Queen of Portugal then of France (1498-1558)

Emperor Charles V (1500-1558)

Isabella of Austria, Queen of Denmark, Norway and Sweden (1501-1526)

Emperor Ferdinand I (1503-1564)

Mary of Hungary, Governor of the Netherlands (1505-1558)

George of Austria, Prince-Bishop of Liège (1505-1557)

Margaret of Parma (1522-1586)

Elizabeth of Austria, Queen of Poland (1526–1545)

King Philip II (1527-1598)

Emperor Maximilian II (1527-1576)

Maria of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1528-1603)

Anna of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1528-1590)

Ferdinand II, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1529-1595)

Maria of Austria, Duchess of Jülich-Cleves-Berg (1531-1581)

Magdalena of Austria, abbess of Hall in Tirol (1532-1590)

Catherine of Austria, Queen of Poland (1533-1572)

Eleanor of Austria, Duchess of Mantua (1534-1594)

Joanna of Austria, Princess of Portugal (1535-1573)

Barbara of Austria, Duchess of Ferrara (1539-1572)

Charles II, ruler of Inner Austria (1540-1590)

Carlos, Prince of Asturias (1545-1568)

Joanna of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1547-1578)

John of Austria (1547-1578)

Anna of Austria, Queen of Spain (1549-1580)

Emperor Rudolf II (1552-1612)

Ernest of Austria, ruler of Inner Austria, governor of the Spanish Netherlands (1553-1595)

Elisabeth of Austria, Queen of France (1554-1592)

Emperor Matthias (1557-1619)

Cardinal Andrew of Austria (1558-1600)

Maximilian III, ruler of Further Austria (1558-1618)

Albert (VII), ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1559-1621)

Charles of Austria, Margrave of Burgau (1560-1618)

Isabella Clara Eugenia, ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1566-1633)

Margaret of Austria, poor Clare (1567–1633)

Catalina Micaela of Spain, Duchess of Savoy (1567-1597)

Anne of Austria, Queen of Poland (1573-1598)

Maria Christina, Princess of Transylvania (1574-1621)

King Philip III (1578-1621)

Emperor Ferdinand II (1578-1637)

Eleanor of Austria, nun in Hall in Tirol (1582–1620)

Maximilian Ernest of Austria, Coadjutor of the Teutonic Order (1583-1616)

Maria of Austria, nun in Innsbrück (1584–1649)

Margaret of Austria, Queen of Spain (1584-1611)

Anna of Tyrol, Holy Roman Empress (1585-1618)

Leopold V, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1586-1632)

Constance of Austria, Queen of Poland (1588-1631)

Maria Maddalena of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1589-1631)

Charles of Austria, Bishop of Breslau (1590-1624)

Anne of Austria, Queen of France (1601-1666)

King Philip IV (1605-1665)

Maria Anna of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1606-1646)

Infante Carlos of Spain (1607–1632)

Emperor Ferdinand III (1608-1657)

Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand of Austria (1609 or 1610-1641)

Maria Anna, Electress of Bavaria (1610-1665)

Cecilia Renata of Austria, Queen of Poland (1611-1644)

Leopold Wilhelm of Austria (1614-1662)

Ferdinand Charles, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1628-1662)

John Joseph of Austria (1629-1679)

Isabella Clara of Austria, Duchess of Mantua, Montferrat, Nevers, Mayenne and Rethel (1629-1685)

Sigismund Francis, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1630-1665)

Maria Leopoldine of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1632-1649)

Ferdinand IV, King of the Romans (1633-1654)

Mariana of Austria, Queen of Spain (1634-1696)

Maria Theresa, Queen of France (1638-1683)

Emperor Leopold I (1640-1705)

Margaret Theresa of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1651-1673)

Eleonore of Austria, Queen of Poland (1653-1697)

Claudia Felicitas of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1653-1676)

Maria Anna Josepha of Austria, Electress of the Palatinate (1654-1689)

King Charles II (1661-1700)

Maria Antonia of Austria, Electress of Bavaria (1669-1692)

Emperor Joseph I (1678-1711)

Maria Elisabeth of Austria, governor of the Austrian Netherlands (1680-1741)

Maria Anna of Austria, Queen of Portugal (1683-1754)

Emperor Charles VI (1685-1740)

Maria Magdalena of Austria (1689–1743)

Maria Josepha of Austria, Queen of Poland (1699-1757)

Maria Amalia, Holy Roman Empress (1701-1756)

Maria Theresa of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1717-1780)

Cognatic:

The House of Habsburg (/ˈhæpsbɜːrɡ/; German: [ˈhaːpsbʊʁk]; alternatively spelled Hapsburg in English; German: Haus Habsburg, Spanish: Casa de Habsburgo, Hungarian: Habsburg-család), also House of Austria (German: Haus Österreich, Spanish: Casa de Austria),[3] was one of the most prominent royal houses of Europe in the 2nd millennium.

The house takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built in the 1020s in present-day Switzerland by Radbot of Klettgau, who named his fortress Habsburg. His grandson Otto II was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "Count of Habsburg" to his title. In 1273, Count Radbot's seventh-generation descendant Rudolph of Habsburg was elected King of the Romans. Taking advantage of the extinction of the Babenbergs and of his victory over Ottokar II of Bohemia at the battle on the Marchfeld in 1278, he subsequently moved the family's power base to Vienna, where the Habsburgs ruled until 1918.

The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs from 1440 until their extinction in the male line in 1740 and, after the death of Francis I, from 1765 until its dissolution in 1806. The house also produced kings of Bohemia, Hungary, Croatia, Spain, Portugal and Galicia-Lodomeria, with their respective colonies; rulers of several principalities in the Low Countries and Italy; and in the 19th century, emperors of Austria and of Austria-Hungary as well as one emperor of Mexico. The family split several times into parallel branches, most consequentially in the mid-16th century between its Spanish and Austrian branches following the abdication of Charles V. Although they ruled distinct territories, the different branches nevertheless maintained close relations and frequently intermarried.

The house of Habsburg still exists and owns the Austrian branch of the Order of the Golden Fleece and the Imperial and Royal Order of Saint George. As of early 2021, the head of the family is Karl von Habsburg.

The origins of Habsburg Castle's name 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.[4][5][6]

The Habsburg name was not continuously used by the family members, since they often emphasized their more prestigious princely titles. The dynasty was thus long known as the "house of Austria". Complementarily, in some circumstances the family members were identified by their place of birth. Charles V was known in his youth after his birthplace as Charles of Ghent. When he became king of Spain he was known as Charles of Spain, and after he was elected emperor, as Charles V (in French, Charles Quint).

In Spain, the dynasty was known as the Casa de Austria, including illegitimate sons such as John of Austria and John Joseph of Austria. The arms displayed in their simplest form were those of Austria, which the Habsburgs had made their own, at times impaled with the arms of the Duchy of Burgundy (ancient).

After Maria Theresa married Duke Francis Stephen of Lorraine, the idea of "Habsburg" as associated with ancestral Austrian rulership was used to show that the old dynasty continued as did all its inherited rights. When Francis I became Emperor of Austria, he adopted the old shield of Habsburg in his personal arms, together with Austria and Lorraine. This also reinforced the "Germanness" of the (French-speaking) Austrian Emperor and his claim to rule in Germany, not least against the Prussian Kings. Some younger sons who had no prospects of the throne were given the personal title of "count of Habsburg".

The surname of more recent members of the family such as Otto von Habsburg and Karl von Habsburg is taken to be "von Habsburg" or more completely "von Habsburg-Lothringen". Princes and members of the house use the tripartite arms adopted in the 18th century by Francis Stephen.

Timeline

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 forthwith farther back as the medieval Adalrich, Duke of Alsace, from the Etichonids from which Habsburg derives. His grandson Radbot of Klettgau founded the Habsburg Castle. That castle was the family seat during most of the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.

The Habsburgs expanded their influence through arranged marriages and incestuous relations with family royalty 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.[7][8]

By the second half of the 13th century, count Rudolph IV (1218–1291) had become an influential territorial lord in the area between the Vosges Mountains and Lake Constance. On 1 October 1273, he was elected as a compromise candidate as King of the Romans and received the name Rudolph I of Germany.[7] He then led a coalition against king Ottokar II of Bohemia who had taken advantage of the Great Interregnum in order to expand southwards, taking over the respective inheritances of the Babenberg (Austria, Styria, Savinja) and of the Spanheim (Carinthia and Carniola). In 1278, Rudolph and his allies defeated and killed Ottokar at the Battle of Marchfeld, and the lands he had acquired reverted to the German crown. With the Georgenberg Pact of 1286, Rudolph secured for his family the duchies of Austria and Styria. The southern portions of Ottokar's former realm, Carinthia, Carniola, and Savinja, went to Rudolph's allies from the House of Gorizia.[9][10]

Following Rudolph's death in 1291, Albert I's assassination in 1308, and Frederick the Fair's failure to secure the German/Imperial crown for himself, the Habsburgs temporarily lost their supremacy in the Empire. In the early 14th century they also focused on the Kingdom of Bohemia. After Václav III’s death on 4 August 1306, there were no male heirs remaining in the Přemyslid dynasty. Habsburg scion Rudolph I was then elected but only lasted a year. The Bohemian kingship was an elected position,[11] and the Habsburgs were only able to secure it on a hereditary basis much later in 1626, following their submission of the Czech lands during the Thirty Years' War. After 1307, subsequent Habsburg attempts to gain the Bohemian crown were frustrated first by Henry of Bohemia (a member of the House of Gorizia) and then by the House of Luxembourg.

Instead, they were able to expand southwards: in 1311, they took over Savinja; after the death of Henry in 1335, they assumed power in Carniola and Carinthia; and in 1369, they succeeded his daughter Margaret in Tyrol. After the death of Albert III of Gorizia in 1374, they gained a foothold at Pazin in central Istria, followed by Trieste in 1382. Meanwhile, the original home territories of the Habsburgs in what is now Switzerland, including the Aargau with Habsburg Castle, were lost in the 14th century to the expanding Swiss Confederacy after the battles of Morgarten (1315) and Sempach (1386). Habsburg Castle itself was finally lost to the Swiss in 1415.

Rudolf IV's brothers Albert III and Leopold III ignored his efforts to preserve the integrity of the family domains, and enacted the separation of the so-called Albertinian and Leopoldian family lines on 25 September 1379 by the Treaty of Neuberg. The former would maintain Austria proper (then called Niederösterreich but comprising modern Lower Austria and most of Upper Austria), while the latter would rule over lands then labeled Oberösterreich, namely Inner Austria (Innerösterreich) comprising Styria, Carinthia and Carniola, and Further Austria (Vorderösterreich) consisting of Tyrol and the western Habsburg lands in Alsace and Swabia.[7]

By marrying Elisabeth of Luxembourg, the daughter of Emperor Sigismund in 1437, Duke Albert V of the Albertine line (1397–1439) became the ruler of Bohemia and Hungary, again expanding the family's political horizons. The next year, Albert was crowned as King of the Romans, known as such as Albert II. Following his early death in a battle against the Ottomans in 1439 and that of his son Ladislaus Postumus in 1457, the Habsburgs lost Bohemia once more as well as Hungary, for several decades. However, with the extinction of the House of Celje in 1456 and the House of Wallsee-Enns in 1466/1483, they managed to absorb significant secular enclaves within their territories, and create a contiguous domain stretching from the border with Bohemia to the Adriatic sea.

After the death of Leopold's eldest son William in 1406, the Leopoldian line was further split among his brothers into the Inner Austrian territory under Ernest the Iron and a Tyrolean/Further Austrian line under Frederick of the empty pockets. In 1440, Ernest's son Frederick III was chosen by the electoral college to succeed Albert II as the king. Several Habsburg kings had attempted to gain the imperial dignity 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.[7]

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 until 1806.[7]

Through the forged document called privilegium maius (1358/59), Duke Rudolf IV (1339–1365) introduced the title of Archduke to place the Habsburgs on a par with the Prince-electors of the Empire, since Emperor Charles IV had omitted to give them the electoral dignity in his Golden Bull of 1356. Charles, however, refused to recognize the title, as did his immediate successors.

Duke Ernest the Iron and his descendants unilaterally assumed the title "archduke". That title was only officially recognized in 1453 by Emperor Frederick III, himself a Habsburg.[12] Frederick 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 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, apparently only started to use the title after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy in 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. 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.

In 1457 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 favor of Frederick's son Maximilian I.

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. Frederick's aim was to make Austria a united country, stretching from the Rhine to the Mur and Leitha.[7]

On the external front, one of Frederick's main achievements was the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), in which he coerced Charles the Bold of Burgundy to give his daughter Mary of Burgundy as wife to Frederick's son Maximilian.[7] 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 favor of Philip in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493.[13]

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. Emperor Charles V would be the last to be crowned by the Pope himself, at Bologna in 1530.[13]

Maximilian's rule (1493–1519) was a time of dramatic expansion for the Habsburgs. In 1497, Maximilian's son Philip, known as the Handsome or the Fair, married Joanna of Castile, also known as Joan the Mad, heiress of the Castile. Phillip and Joan had six children, the eldest of whom became Emperor Charles V and ruled the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon (including their colonies in the New World), Southern Italy, Austria, and the Low Countries.[14]

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 Louis's sister Anna. The wedding was celebrated in grand style on 22 July 1515. All these 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 the latter's designs were ultimately successful: upon Louis's death in battle in 1526, Ferdinand became king of Bohemia and Hungary.

The Habsburg dynasty achieved its highest position when Charles V was elected Holy Roman Emperor. Much of Charles's reign was dedicated to the fight against Protestantism, which led to its eradication throughout vast areas under Habsburg control.

After the abdication of Charles V in 1556, the Habsburg dynasty split into the branch of the Austrian (or German) Habsburgs, led by Ferdinand, and the branch of the Spanish Habsburgs, initially led by Charles's son Philip.[15] Ferdinand I, King of Bohemia, Hungary,[16] and archduke of Austria in the name of his brother Charles V became suo jure monarch as well as the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperor (designated as successor already in 1531). Philip became King of Spain and its colonial empire as Philip II, and ruler of the Habsburg domains in Italy and the Low Countries. The Spanish Habsburgs also ruled Portugal for a time, known there as the Philippine dynasty (1580–1640).

The Seventeen Provinces and the Duchy of Milan were in personal union under the King of Spain, but remained part of the Holy Roman Empire. Furthermore, the Spanish king had claims on Hungary and Bohemia. In the secret Oñate treaty of 29 July 1617, the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs settled their mutual claims.

The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by frequent consanguineous marriages, resulting in a cumulatively deleterious effect on their gene pool. Health impairments due to inbreeding including epilepsy, insanity and death. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests inbreeding may have played a factor in their extinction.[17] Numerous members of the family showed specific facial deformities: an enlarged lower jaw with an extended chin known as mandibular prognathism or "Habsburg jaw", a large nose with hump and hanging tip ("Habsburg nose"), and an everted lower lip ("Habsburg lip"). The latter two are signs of maxillary deficiency. A 2019 study found that the degree of mandibular prognasthism in the Habsburg family shows a statistically significant correlation with the degree of inbreeding. A correlation between maxillary deficiency and degree of inbreeding was also present but was not statistically significant.[18][19] Other scientific studies, however, dispute the ideas of any linkage between fertility and consanguinity.[20]

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".[21][17]

The death of Charles II of Spain in 1700 led to the War of the Spanish Succession, and that of Emperor Charles VI in 1740 led to the War of the Austrian Succession. In the former, the House of Bourbon won the conflict and put a final end to the Habsburg rule in Spain. The latter, however, was won by Maria Theresa and led to the succession of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Haus Habsburg-Lothringen) becoming the new main branch of the dynasty, in the person of Maria Theresa's son, Joseph II. This new House was created by the marriage between Maria Theresa of Habsburg and Francis Stephan, Duke of Lorraine[22] (both of them were great-grandchildren of Habsburg emperor Ferdinand III, but from different empresses) being this new House a cadet branch of the female line of the House of Habsburg and the male line of the House of Lorraine. It is thought that extensive intra-family marriages within Spanish and Austrian lines contributed to the extinction of the main line.

On 6 August 1806, Emperor Francis I dissolved the Holy Roman Empire under pressure from Napoleon's reorganization of Germany. In anticipation of the loss of his title of Holy Roman Emperor, Francis had 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.[24] Under this arrangement, the Hungarians referred to their ruler as king and never emperor (see k. u. k.). 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 of Austria (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 that 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, on 31 May 1961 renounced all claims to the throne.

In the interwar period, the House of Habsburg was a vehement opponent of National Socialism and Communism. In Germany, Adolf Hitler diametrically opposed the centuries-old Habsburg principles of largely allowing local communities under their rule to maintain traditional ethnic, religious and language practices, and he bristled with hatred against the Habsburg family. During the Second World War there was a strong Habsburg resistance movement in Central Europe, which was radically persecuted by the Nazis and the Gestapo. The unofficial leader of these groups was Otto von Habsburg, who campaigned against the Nazis and for a free Central Europe in France and the United States. Most of the resistance fighters, such as Heinrich Maier, who successfully passed on production sites and plans for V-2 rockets, Tiger tanks and aircraft to the Allies, were executed. The Habsburg family played a leading role in the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Communist Eastern Bloc.[25][26][27][28][29]

As they accumulated crowns and titles, the Habsburgs developed a unique family tradition of multilingualism that evolved over the centuries. The Holy Roman Empire had been multilingual from the start, even though most of its emperors were native German-speakers.[30] The language issue within the Empire became gradually more salient as the non-religious use of Latin declined and that of national languages gained prominence during the High Middle Ages. Emperor Charles IV of Luxembourg was known to be fluent in Czech, French, German, Italian and Latin.[31]

The last section of his Golden Bull of 1356 specifies that the Empire's secular prince-electors "should be instructed in the varieties of the different dialects and languages" and that "since they are expected in all likelihood to have naturally acquired the German language, and to have been taught it from their infancy, [they] shall be instructed in the grammar of the Italian and Slavic tongues, beginning with the seventh year of their age so that, before the fourteenth year of their age, they may be learned in the same".[32] In the early 15th century, Strasbourg-based chronicler Jakob Twinger von Königshofen asserted that Charlemagne had mastered six languages, even though he had a preference for German.[30]:306

In the early years of the family's ascendancy, neither Rudolf I nor Albert I appear to have spoken French.[30]:278 By contrast, Charles V of Habsburg is well known some having been fluent in several languages. He was native in French and also knew Dutch from his youth in Flanders. He later added some Castilian Spanish, which he was required to learn by the Castilian Cortes Generales. He could also speak some Basque, acquired by the influence of the Basque secretaries serving in the royal court.[33] He gained a decent command of German following the Imperial election of 1519, though he never spoke it as well as French.[34] A witticism sometimes attributed to Charles was: "I speak Spanish/Latin [depending on the source] to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse."[35]

Latin was the administrative language of the Empire until the aggressive promotion of German by Joseph II in the late 18th century, which was partly reversed by his successors. From the 16th century, most if not all Habsburgs spoke French as well as German, and many also spoke Italian.[citation needed] Ferdinand I, Maximilian II and Rudolf II addressed the Bohemian Assembly in Czech, even though it is not clear that they were fluent. By contrast, there is little evidence that later Habsburgs in the 17th and 18th centuries spoke Czech, with the probable exception of Ferdinand III who made several stays in Bohemia and appears to have spoken Czech while there. In the 19th century, Francis I had notions of Czech, and Ferdinand I spoke it decently.[36] Maximilian II spoke Spanish, Latin, Hungarian and Italian in addition to French and German and his above-mentioned notions of Czech. Maria Theresa spoke German, Italian, French, Spanish, Latin, and added Hungarian before she became Empress.[37]

Franz Joseph received a bilingual early education in French and German, then added Czech and Hungarian and later Italian and Polish. He also learned Latin and Greek.[38] Even so, he viewed himself as German, and once wrote to Napoleon III "Nein, ich bin ein Deutscher Fürst".[39] After the end of the Habsburg Monarchy, Otto von Habsburg was fluent in English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese.[40]

Habsburg Castle, Aargau, Switzerland

Graz Castle [de]

Linz Castle

Hofburg Palace, Vienna

Hofburg, Innsbruck

Old Laxenburg Castle

Palace of Charles V, Granada

Palace of Margaret of Austria in Mechelen

Prague Castle

Bratislava Castle

Royal Palace of Milan

Royal Palace of Naples

El Escorial Palace near Madrid

Ambras Castle, Innsbruck

Neugebäude Palace near Vienna

Buda Castle

Royal Palace of Gödöllő near Budapest

Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna

Hetzendorf Palace, Vienna

Palace of Charles of Lorraine in Brussels

Royal Villa of Monza

Habsburg Hunting Palace in Cieszyn, Poland

Habsburg Palace in Żywiec, Poland

Palais Erzherzog Wilhelm in Vienna

Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl, Austria

Miramare Castle, Trieste

Villa Wartholz, Reichenau an der Rax

Hermesvilla in Vienna

Konopiště Castle near Benešov, Czechia

Achilleion Palace in Corfu

Schloss Wilhelminenberg, Vienna

Casa Austria (Villa Swoboda [de]) outside Salzburg

The Habsburgs' monarchical positions included:

Before Rudolph rose to German king, the Habsburgs were Counts of Baden in what is today southwestern Germany and Switzerland.[43]

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 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.

The abdications of Charles V in 1556 ended his formal authority over Ferdinand and made him suo jure ruler in Austria, Bohemia, Hungary, as well as Holy Roman Emperor.

Ferdinand's inheritance had been split in 1564 among his children, with Maximilian taking the Imperial crown and his younger brother Archduke Charles II ruling over 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). Charles's son and successor 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.

Habsburg Spain was a personal union between the Crowns of Castile and Aragon; Aragon was itself divided into the Kingdoms of Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Majorca, Naples, Sicily, Malta and Sardinia.[47] From 1581, they were kings of Portugal until they renounced this title in the 1668 Treaty of Lisbon. They were also Dukes of Milan, Lord of the Americas, and holder of multiple titles from territories within the Habsburg Netherlands. A full listing can be seen here.

The War of the Spanish Succession took place after the extinction of the Spanish Habsburg line, to determine the inheritance of Charles II.

Charles the Bold controlled not only Burgundy (both dukedom and county) but also Flanders and the broader Burgundian Netherlands. Frederick III managed to secure the marriage of Charles's only daughter, Mary of Burgundy, to his son Maximilian. The wedding took place on the evening of 16 August 1477, after the death of Charles.[48] 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.

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 War of the Austrian Succession took place after the extinction of the male line of the Austrian Habsburg line upon the death of Charles VI. The direct Habsburg line itself became totally extinct with the death of Maria Theresa of Austria, when it was followed by the House of Lorraine, styled of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Queen Maria Christina of Austria of Spain, great-granddaughter of Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor above. Wife of Alfonso XII of Spain and mother of Alfonso XIII of the House of Bourbon. Alfonso XIII's wife Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg was descended from King George I of Great Britain from the Habsburg Leopold Line {above}.

The House of Habsburg-Lorraine retained Austria and attached possessions after the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire; see below.

A son of Leopold II was Archduke Rainer of Austria whose wife was from the House of Savoy; a daughter Adelaide, Queen of Sardina was the wife of King Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy, and Sardinia and King of Italy. Their Children married into the Royal Houses of Bonaparte; Saxe-Coburg and Gotha {Bragança} {Portugal}; Savoy {Spain}; and the Dukedoms of Montferrat and Chablis.

(→Family Tree)

Francis Stephen assigned the grand duchy of Tuscany to his second son Peter Leopold, who in turn assigned it to his second son upon his accession as Holy Roman Emperor. Tuscany remained the domain of this cadet branch of the family until Italian unification.

The duchy of Modena was assigned to a minor branch of the family by the Congress of Vienna. It was lost to Italian unification. The Dukes named their line the House of Austria-Este, as they were descended from the daughter of the last D'Este Duke of Modena.

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 favor.

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.

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 Campanas, Querétaro, in 1867 by the republican forces of Benito Juárez.

Charles I was expelled from his domains after World War I and the empire was abolished.[43]

This gallery only features portraits believed to be based on likeness. It does not include possibly imaginary depictions, such as those of early Habsburg rulers created by Anton Boys for Archduke Ferdinand II in the late 16th century. It also does not display family members who failed to reach adult age or did not play any historically significant role, including most of those born in the late 19th and 20th century in line with the erosion of the Habsburg family's historical significance after World War I.

Individuals are listed by chronological order of birth. The title of Archduke/Archduchess belonged by birthright to all Austrian Habsburgs, and is generally omitted unless the individual used no other title.

King Rudolf I (1218-1291)

Duke Rudolf IV (1339-1365)

King Albert II (1397-1439)

Emperor Frederick III (1415-1493)

Sigismund, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1427-1496)

King Ladislaus the Posthumous (1440-1457)

Emperor Maximilian I (1459-1519)

Kunigunde of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1465-1520)

Philip the Handsome, King of Castile (1478-1506)

Margaret of Austria, Duchess of Savoy (1480-1530)

Eleanor of Austria, Queen of Portugal then of France (1498-1558)

Emperor Charles V (1500-1558)

Isabella of Austria, Queen of Denmark, Norway and Sweden (1501-1526)

Emperor Ferdinand I (1503-1564)

Mary of Hungary, Governor of the Netherlands (1505-1558)

George of Austria, Prince-Bishop of Liège (1505-1557)

Margaret of Parma (1522-1586)

Elizabeth of Austria, Queen of Poland (1526–1545)

King Philip II (1527-1598)

Emperor Maximilian II (1527-1576)

Maria of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1528-1603)

Anna of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1528-1590)

Ferdinand II, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1529-1595)

Maria of Austria, Duchess of Jülich-Cleves-Berg (1531-1581)

Magdalena of Austria, abbess of Hall in Tirol (1532-1590)

Catherine of Austria, Queen of Poland (1533-1572)

Eleanor of Austria, Duchess of Mantua (1534-1594)

Joanna of Austria, Princess of Portugal (1535-1573)

Barbara of Austria, Duchess of Ferrara (1539-1572)

Charles II, ruler of Inner Austria (1540-1590)

Carlos, Prince of Asturias (1545-1568)

Joanna of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1547-1578)

John of Austria (1547-1578)

Anna of Austria, Queen of Spain (1549-1580)

Emperor Rudolf II (1552-1612)

Ernest of Austria, ruler of Inner Austria, governor of the Spanish Netherlands (1553-1595)

Elisabeth of Austria, Queen of France (1554-1592)

Emperor Matthias (1557-1619)

Cardinal Andrew of Austria (1558-1600)

Maximilian III, ruler of Further Austria (1558-1618)

Albert (VII), ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1559-1621)

Charles of Austria, Margrave of Burgau (1560-1618)

Isabella Clara Eugenia, ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1566-1633)

Margaret of Austria, poor Clare (1567–1633)

Catalina Micaela of Spain, Duchess of Savoy (1567-1597)

Anne of Austria, Queen of Poland (1573-1598)

Maria Christina, Princess of Transylvania (1574-1621)

King Philip III (1578-1621)

Emperor Ferdinand II (1578-1637)

Eleanor of Austria, nun in Hall in Tirol (1582–1620)

Maximilian Ernest of Austria, Coadjutor of the Teutonic Order (1583-1616)

Maria of Austria, nun in Innsbrück (1584–1649)

Margaret of Austria, Queen of Spain (1584-1611)

Anna of Tyrol, Holy Roman Empress (1585-1618)

Leopold V, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1586-1632)

Constance of Austria, Queen of Poland (1588-1631)

Maria Maddalena of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1589-1631)

Charles of Austria, Bishop of Breslau (1590-1624)

Anne of Austria, Queen of France (1601-1666)

King Philip IV (1605-1665)

Maria Anna of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1606-1646)

Infante Carlos of Spain (1607–1632)

Emperor Ferdinand III (1608-1657)

Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand of Austria (1609 or 1610-1641)

Maria Anna, Electress of Bavaria (1610-1665)

Cecilia Renata of Austria, Queen of Poland (1611-1644)

Leopold Wilhelm of Austria (1614-1662)

Ferdinand Charles, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1628-1662)

John Joseph of Austria (1629-1679)

Isabella Clara of Austria, Duchess of Mantua, Montferrat, Nevers, Mayenne and Rethel (1629-1685)

Sigismund Francis, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1630-1665)

Maria Leopoldine of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1632-1649)

Ferdinand IV, King of the Romans (1633-1654)

Mariana of Austria, Queen of Spain (1634-1696)

Maria Theresa, Queen of France (1638-1683)

Emperor Leopold I (1640-1705)

Margaret Theresa of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1651-1673)

Eleonore of Austria, Queen of Poland (1653-1697)

Claudia Felicitas of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1653-1676)

Maria Anna Josepha of Austria, Electress of the Palatinate (1654-1689)

King Charles II (1661-1700)

Maria Antonia of Austria, Electress of Bavaria (1669-1692)

Emperor Joseph I (1678-1711)

Maria Elisabeth of Austria, governor of the Austrian Netherlands (1680-1741)

Maria Anna of Austria, Queen of Portugal (1683-1754)

Emperor Charles VI (1685-1740)

Maria Magdalena of Austria (1689–1743)

Maria Josepha of Austria, Queen of Poland (1699-1757)

Maria Amalia, Holy Roman Empress (1701-1756)

Maria Theresa of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1717-1780)

Cognatic:

The House of Habsburg (/ˈhæpsbɜːrɡ/; German: [ˈhaːpsbʊʁk]; alternatively spelled Hapsburg in English; German: Haus Habsburg, Spanish: Casa de Habsburgo, Hungarian: Habsburg-család), also House of Austria (German: Haus Österreich, Spanish: Casa de Austria),[3] was one of the most prominent royal houses of Europe in the 2nd millennium.

The house takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built in the 1020s in present-day Switzerland by Radbot of Klettgau, who named his fortress Habsburg. His grandson Otto II was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "Count of Habsburg" to his title. In 1273, Count Radbot's seventh-generation descendant Rudolph of Habsburg was elected King of the Romans. Taking advantage of the extinction of the Babenbergs and of his victory over Ottokar II of Bohemia at the battle on the Marchfeld in 1278, he subsequently moved the family's power base to Vienna, where the Habsburgs ruled until 1918.

The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs from 1440 until their extinction in the male line in 1740 and, after the death of Francis I, from 1765 until its dissolution in 1806. The house also produced kings of Bohemia, Hungary, Croatia, Spain, Portugal and Galicia-Lodomeria, with their respective colonies; rulers of several principalities in the Low Countries and Italy; and in the 19th century, emperors of Austria and of Austria-Hungary as well as one emperor of Mexico. The family split several times into parallel branches, most consequentially in the mid-16th century between its Spanish and Austrian branches following the abdication of Charles V. Although they ruled distinct territories, the different branches nevertheless maintained close relations and frequently intermarried.

The house of Habsburg still exists and owns the Austrian branch of the Order of the Golden Fleece and the Imperial and Royal Order of Saint George. As of early 2021, the head of the family is Karl von Habsburg.

The origins of Habsburg Castle's name 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.[4][5][6]

The Habsburg name was not continuously used by the family members, since they often emphasized their more prestigious princely titles. The dynasty was thus long known as the "house of Austria". Complementarily, in some circumstances the family members were identified by their place of birth. Charles V was known in his youth after his birthplace as Charles of Ghent. When he became king of Spain he was known as Charles of Spain, and after he was elected emperor, as Charles V (in French, Charles Quint).

In Spain, the dynasty was known as the Casa de Austria, including illegitimate sons such as John of Austria and John Joseph of Austria. The arms displayed in their simplest form were those of Austria, which the Habsburgs had made their own, at times impaled with the arms of the Duchy of Burgundy (ancient).

After Maria Theresa married Duke Francis Stephen of Lorraine, the idea of "Habsburg" as associated with ancestral Austrian rulership was used to show that the old dynasty continued as did all its inherited rights. When Francis I became Emperor of Austria, he adopted the old shield of Habsburg in his personal arms, together with Austria and Lorraine. This also reinforced the "Germanness" of the (French-speaking) Austrian Emperor and his claim to rule in Germany, not least against the Prussian Kings. Some younger sons who had no prospects of the throne were given the personal title of "count of Habsburg".

The surname of more recent members of the family such as Otto von Habsburg and Karl von Habsburg is taken to be "von Habsburg" or more completely "von Habsburg-Lothringen". Princes and members of the house use the tripartite arms adopted in the 18th century by Francis Stephen.

Timeline

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 forthwith farther back as the medieval Adalrich, Duke of Alsace, from the Etichonids from which Habsburg derives. His grandson Radbot of Klettgau founded the Habsburg Castle. That castle was the family seat during most of the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.

The Habsburgs expanded their influence through arranged marriages and incestuous relations with family royalty 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.[7][8]

By the second half of the 13th century, count Rudolph IV (1218–1291) had become an influential territorial lord in the area between the Vosges Mountains and Lake Constance. On 1 October 1273, he was elected as a compromise candidate as King of the Romans and received the name Rudolph I of Germany.[7] He then led a coalition against king Ottokar II of Bohemia who had taken advantage of the Great Interregnum in order to expand southwards, taking over the respective inheritances of the Babenberg (Austria, Styria, Savinja) and of the Spanheim (Carinthia and Carniola). In 1278, Rudolph and his allies defeated and killed Ottokar at the Battle of Marchfeld, and the lands he had acquired reverted to the German crown. With the Georgenberg Pact of 1286, Rudolph secured for his family the duchies of Austria and Styria. The southern portions of Ottokar's former realm, Carinthia, Carniola, and Savinja, went to Rudolph's allies from the House of Gorizia.[9][10]

Following Rudolph's death in 1291, Albert I's assassination in 1308, and Frederick the Fair's failure to secure the German/Imperial crown for himself, the Habsburgs temporarily lost their supremacy in the Empire. In the early 14th century they also focused on the Kingdom of Bohemia. After Václav III’s death on 4 August 1306, there were no male heirs remaining in the Přemyslid dynasty. Habsburg scion Rudolph I was then elected but only lasted a year. The Bohemian kingship was an elected position,[11] and the Habsburgs were only able to secure it on a hereditary basis much later in 1626, following their submission of the Czech lands during the Thirty Years' War. After 1307, subsequent Habsburg attempts to gain the Bohemian crown were frustrated first by Henry of Bohemia (a member of the House of Gorizia) and then by the House of Luxembourg.

Instead, they were able to expand southwards: in 1311, they took over Savinja; after the death of Henry in 1335, they assumed power in Carniola and Carinthia; and in 1369, they succeeded his daughter Margaret in Tyrol. After the death of Albert III of Gorizia in 1374, they gained a foothold at Pazin in central Istria, followed by Trieste in 1382. Meanwhile, the original home territories of the Habsburgs in what is now Switzerland, including the Aargau with Habsburg Castle, were lost in the 14th century to the expanding Swiss Confederacy after the battles of Morgarten (1315) and Sempach (1386). Habsburg Castle itself was finally lost to the Swiss in 1415.

Rudolf IV's brothers Albert III and Leopold III ignored his efforts to preserve the integrity of the family domains, and enacted the separation of the so-called Albertinian and Leopoldian family lines on 25 September 1379 by the Treaty of Neuberg. The former would maintain Austria proper (then called Niederösterreich but comprising modern Lower Austria and most of Upper Austria), while the latter would rule over lands then labeled Oberösterreich, namely Inner Austria (Innerösterreich) comprising Styria, Carinthia and Carniola, and Further Austria (Vorderösterreich) consisting of Tyrol and the western Habsburg lands in Alsace and Swabia.[7]

By marrying Elisabeth of Luxembourg, the daughter of Emperor Sigismund in 1437, Duke Albert V of the Albertine line (1397–1439) became the ruler of Bohemia and Hungary, again expanding the family's political horizons. The next year, Albert was crowned as King of the Romans, known as such as Albert II. Following his early death in a battle against the Ottomans in 1439 and that of his son Ladislaus Postumus in 1457, the Habsburgs lost Bohemia once more as well as Hungary, for several decades. However, with the extinction of the House of Celje in 1456 and the House of Wallsee-Enns in 1466/1483, they managed to absorb significant secular enclaves within their territories, and create a contiguous domain stretching from the border with Bohemia to the Adriatic sea.

After the death of Leopold's eldest son William in 1406, the Leopoldian line was further split among his brothers into the Inner Austrian territory under Ernest the Iron and a Tyrolean/Further Austrian line under Frederick of the empty pockets. In 1440, Ernest's son Frederick III was chosen by the electoral college to succeed Albert II as the king. Several Habsburg kings had attempted to gain the imperial dignity 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.[7]

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 until 1806.[7]

Through the forged document called privilegium maius (1358/59), Duke Rudolf IV (1339–1365) introduced the title of Archduke to place the Habsburgs on a par with the Prince-electors of the Empire, since Emperor Charles IV had omitted to give them the electoral dignity in his Golden Bull of 1356. Charles, however, refused to recognize the title, as did his immediate successors.

Duke Ernest the Iron and his descendants unilaterally assumed the title "archduke". That title was only officially recognized in 1453 by Emperor Frederick III, himself a Habsburg.[12] Frederick 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 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, apparently only started to use the title after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy in 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. 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.

In 1457 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 favor of Frederick's son Maximilian I.

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. Frederick's aim was to make Austria a united country, stretching from the Rhine to the Mur and Leitha.[7]

On the external front, one of Frederick's main achievements was the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), in which he coerced Charles the Bold of Burgundy to give his daughter Mary of Burgundy as wife to Frederick's son Maximilian.[7] 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 favor of Philip in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493.[13]

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. Emperor Charles V would be the last to be crowned by the Pope himself, at Bologna in 1530.[13]

Maximilian's rule (1493–1519) was a time of dramatic expansion for the Habsburgs. In 1497, Maximilian's son Philip, known as the Handsome or the Fair, married Joanna of Castile, also known as Joan the Mad, heiress of the Castile. Phillip and Joan had six children, the eldest of whom became Emperor Charles V and ruled the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon (including their colonies in the New World), Southern Italy, Austria, and the Low Countries.[14]

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 Louis's sister Anna. The wedding was celebrated in grand style on 22 July 1515. All these 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 the latter's designs were ultimately successful: upon Louis's death in battle in 1526, Ferdinand became king of Bohemia and Hungary.

The Habsburg dynasty achieved its highest position when Charles V was elected Holy Roman Emperor. Much of Charles's reign was dedicated to the fight against Protestantism, which led to its eradication throughout vast areas under Habsburg control.

After the abdication of Charles V in 1556, the Habsburg dynasty split into the branch of the Austrian (or German) Habsburgs, led by Ferdinand, and the branch of the Spanish Habsburgs, initially led by Charles's son Philip.[15] Ferdinand I, King of Bohemia, Hungary,[16] and archduke of Austria in the name of his brother Charles V became suo jure monarch as well as the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperor (designated as successor already in 1531). Philip became King of Spain and its colonial empire as Philip II, and ruler of the Habsburg domains in Italy and the Low Countries. The Spanish Habsburgs also ruled Portugal for a time, known there as the Philippine dynasty (1580–1640).

The Seventeen Provinces and the Duchy of Milan were in personal union under the King of Spain, but remained part of the Holy Roman Empire. Furthermore, the Spanish king had claims on Hungary and Bohemia. In the secret Oñate treaty of 29 July 1617, the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs settled their mutual claims.

The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by frequent consanguineous marriages, resulting in a cumulatively deleterious effect on their gene pool. Health impairments due to inbreeding including epilepsy, insanity and death. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests inbreeding may have played a factor in their extinction.[17] Numerous members of the family showed specific facial deformities: an enlarged lower jaw with an extended chin known as mandibular prognathism or "Habsburg jaw", a large nose with hump and hanging tip ("Habsburg nose"), and an everted lower lip ("Habsburg lip"). The latter two are signs of maxillary deficiency. A 2019 study found that the degree of mandibular prognasthism in the Habsburg family shows a statistically significant correlation with the degree of inbreeding. A correlation between maxillary deficiency and degree of inbreeding was also present but was not statistically significant.[18][19] Other scientific studies, however, dispute the ideas of any linkage between fertility and consanguinity.[20]

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".[21][17]

The death of Charles II of Spain in 1700 led to the War of the Spanish Succession, and that of Emperor Charles VI in 1740 led to the War of the Austrian Succession. In the former, the House of Bourbon won the conflict and put a final end to the Habsburg rule in Spain. The latter, however, was won by Maria Theresa and led to the succession of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Haus Habsburg-Lothringen) becoming the new main branch of the dynasty, in the person of Maria Theresa's son, Joseph II. This new House was created by the marriage between Maria Theresa of Habsburg and Francis Stephan, Duke of Lorraine[22] (both of them were great-grandchildren of Habsburg emperor Ferdinand III, but from different empresses) being this new House a cadet branch of the female line of the House of Habsburg and the male line of the House of Lorraine. It is thought that extensive intra-family marriages within Spanish and Austrian lines contributed to the extinction of the main line.

On 6 August 1806, Emperor Francis I dissolved the Holy Roman Empire under pressure from Napoleon's reorganization of Germany. In anticipation of the loss of his title of Holy Roman Emperor, Francis had 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.[24] Under this arrangement, the Hungarians referred to their ruler as king and never emperor (see k. u. k.). 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 of Austria (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 that 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, on 31 May 1961 renounced all claims to the throne.

In the interwar period, the House of Habsburg was a vehement opponent of National Socialism and Communism. In Germany, Adolf Hitler diametrically opposed the centuries-old Habsburg principles of largely allowing local communities under their rule to maintain traditional ethnic, religious and language practices, and he bristled with hatred against the Habsburg family. During the Second World War there was a strong Habsburg resistance movement in Central Europe, which was radically persecuted by the Nazis and the Gestapo. The unofficial leader of these groups was Otto von Habsburg, who campaigned against the Nazis and for a free Central Europe in France and the United States. Most of the resistance fighters, such as Heinrich Maier, who successfully passed on production sites and plans for V-2 rockets, Tiger tanks and aircraft to the Allies, were executed. The Habsburg family played a leading role in the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Communist Eastern Bloc.[25][26][27][28][29]

As they accumulated crowns and titles, the Habsburgs developed a unique family tradition of multilingualism that evolved over the centuries. The Holy Roman Empire had been multilingual from the start, even though most of its emperors were native German-speakers.[30] The language issue within the Empire became gradually more salient as the non-religious use of Latin declined and that of national languages gained prominence during the High Middle Ages. Emperor Charles IV of Luxembourg was known to be fluent in Czech, French, German, Italian and Latin.[31]

The last section of his Golden Bull of 1356 specifies that the Empire's secular prince-electors "should be instructed in the varieties of the different dialects and languages" and that "since they are expected in all likelihood to have naturally acquired the German language, and to have been taught it from their infancy, [they] shall be instructed in the grammar of the Italian and Slavic tongues, beginning with the seventh year of their age so that, before the fourteenth year of their age, they may be learned in the same".[32] In the early 15th century, Strasbourg-based chronicler Jakob Twinger von Königshofen asserted that Charlemagne had mastered six languages, even though he had a preference for German.[30]:306

In the early years of the family's ascendancy, neither Rudolf I nor Albert I appear to have spoken French.[30]:278 By contrast, Charles V of Habsburg is well known some having been fluent in several languages. He was native in French and also knew Dutch from his youth in Flanders. He later added some Castilian Spanish, which he was required to learn by the Castilian Cortes Generales. He could also speak some Basque, acquired by the influence of the Basque secretaries serving in the royal court.[33] He gained a decent command of German following the Imperial election of 1519, though he never spoke it as well as French.[34] A witticism sometimes attributed to Charles was: "I speak Spanish/Latin [depending on the source] to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse."[35]

Latin was the administrative language of the Empire until the aggressive promotion of German by Joseph II in the late 18th century, which was partly reversed by his successors. From the 16th century, most if not all Habsburgs spoke French as well as German, and many also spoke Italian.[citation needed] Ferdinand I, Maximilian II and Rudolf II addressed the Bohemian Assembly in Czech, even though it is not clear that they were fluent. By contrast, there is little evidence that later Habsburgs in the 17th and 18th centuries spoke Czech, with the probable exception of Ferdinand III who made several stays in Bohemia and appears to have spoken Czech while there. In the 19th century, Francis I had notions of Czech, and Ferdinand I spoke it decently.[36] Maximilian II spoke Spanish, Latin, Hungarian and Italian in addition to French and German and his above-mentioned notions of Czech. Maria Theresa spoke German, Italian, French, Spanish, Latin, and added Hungarian before she became Empress.[37]

Franz Joseph received a bilingual early education in French and German, then added Czech and Hungarian and later Italian and Polish. He also learned Latin and Greek.[38] Even so, he viewed himself as German, and once wrote to Napoleon III "Nein, ich bin ein Deutscher Fürst".[39] After the end of the Habsburg Monarchy, Otto von Habsburg was fluent in English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese.[40]

Habsburg Castle, Aargau, Switzerland

Graz Castle [de]

Linz Castle

Hofburg Palace, Vienna

Hofburg, Innsbruck

Old Laxenburg Castle

Palace of Charles V, Granada

Palace of Margaret of Austria in Mechelen

Prague Castle

Bratislava Castle

Royal Palace of Milan

Royal Palace of Naples

El Escorial Palace near Madrid

Ambras Castle, Innsbruck

Neugebäude Palace near Vienna

Buda Castle

Royal Palace of Gödöllő near Budapest

Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna

Hetzendorf Palace, Vienna

Palace of Charles of Lorraine in Brussels

Royal Villa of Monza

Habsburg Hunting Palace in Cieszyn, Poland

Habsburg Palace in Żywiec, Poland

Palais Erzherzog Wilhelm in Vienna

Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl, Austria

Miramare Castle, Trieste

Villa Wartholz, Reichenau an der Rax

Hermesvilla in Vienna

Konopiště Castle near Benešov, Czechia

Achilleion Palace in Corfu

Schloss Wilhelminenberg, Vienna

Casa Austria (Villa Swoboda [de]) outside Salzburg

The Habsburgs' monarchical positions included:

Before Rudolph rose to German king, the Habsburgs were Counts of Baden in what is today southwestern Germany and Switzerland.[43]

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 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.

The abdications of Charles V in 1556 ended his formal authority over Ferdinand and made him suo jure ruler in Austria, Bohemia, Hungary, as well as Holy Roman Emperor.

Ferdinand's inheritance had been split in 1564 among his children, with Maximilian taking the Imperial crown and his younger brother Archduke Charles II ruling over 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). Charles's son and successor 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.

Habsburg Spain was a personal union between the Crowns of Castile and Aragon; Aragon was itself divided into the Kingdoms of Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Majorca, Naples, Sicily, Malta and Sardinia.[47] From 1581, they were kings of Portugal until they renounced this title in the 1668 Treaty of Lisbon. They were also Dukes of Milan, Lord of the Americas, and holder of multiple titles from territories within the Habsburg Netherlands. A full listing can be seen here.

The War of the Spanish Succession took place after the extinction of the Spanish Habsburg line, to determine the inheritance of Charles II.

Charles the Bold controlled not only Burgundy (both dukedom and county) but also Flanders and the broader Burgundian Netherlands. Frederick III managed to secure the marriage of Charles's only daughter, Mary of Burgundy, to his son Maximilian. The wedding took place on the evening of 16 August 1477, after the death of Charles.[48] 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.

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 War of the Austrian Succession took place after the extinction of the male line of the Austrian Habsburg line upon the death of Charles VI. The direct Habsburg line itself became totally extinct with the death of Maria Theresa of Austria, when it was followed by the House of Lorraine, styled of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Queen Maria Christina of Austria of Spain, great-granddaughter of Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor above. Wife of Alfonso XII of Spain and mother of Alfonso XIII of the House of Bourbon. Alfonso XIII's wife Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg was descended from King George I of Great Britain from the Habsburg Leopold Line {above}.

The House of Habsburg-Lorraine retained Austria and attached possessions after the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire; see below.

A son of Leopold II was Archduke Rainer of Austria whose wife was from the House of Savoy; a daughter Adelaide, Queen of Sardina was the wife of King Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy, and Sardinia and King of Italy. Their Children married into the Royal Houses of Bonaparte; Saxe-Coburg and Gotha {Bragança} {Portugal}; Savoy {Spain}; and the Dukedoms of Montferrat and Chablis.

(→Family Tree)

Francis Stephen assigned the grand duchy of Tuscany to his second son Peter Leopold, who in turn assigned it to his second son upon his accession as Holy Roman Emperor. Tuscany remained the domain of this cadet branch of the family until Italian unification.

The duchy of Modena was assigned to a minor branch of the family by the Congress of Vienna. It was lost to Italian unification. The Dukes named their line the House of Austria-Este, as they were descended from the daughter of the last D'Este Duke of Modena.

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 favor.

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.

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 Campanas, Querétaro, in 1867 by the republican forces of Benito Juárez.

Charles I was expelled from his domains after World War I and the empire was abolished.[43]

This gallery only features portraits believed to be based on likeness. It does not include possibly imaginary depictions, such as those of early Habsburg rulers created by Anton Boys for Archduke Ferdinand II in the late 16th century. It also does not display family members who failed to reach adult age or did not play any historically significant role, including most of those born in the late 19th and 20th century in line with the erosion of the Habsburg family's historical significance after World War I.

Individuals are listed by chronological order of birth. The title of Archduke/Archduchess belonged by birthright to all Austrian Habsburgs, and is generally omitted unless the individual used no other title.

King Rudolf I (1218-1291)

Duke Rudolf IV (1339-1365)

King Albert II (1397-1439)

Emperor Frederick III (1415-1493)

Sigismund, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1427-1496)

King Ladislaus the Posthumous (1440-1457)

Emperor Maximilian I (1459-1519)

Kunigunde of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1465-1520)

Philip the Handsome, King of Castile (1478-1506)

Margaret of Austria, Duchess of Savoy (1480-1530)

Eleanor of Austria, Queen of Portugal then of France (1498-1558)

Emperor Charles V (1500-1558)

Isabella of Austria, Queen of Denmark, Norway and Sweden (1501-1526)

Emperor Ferdinand I (1503-1564)

Mary of Hungary, Governor of the Netherlands (1505-1558)

George of Austria, Prince-Bishop of Liège (1505-1557)

Margaret of Parma (1522-1586)

Elizabeth of Austria, Queen of Poland (1526–1545)

King Philip II (1527-1598)

Emperor Maximilian II (1527-1576)

Maria of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1528-1603)

Anna of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1528-1590)

Ferdinand II, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1529-1595)

Maria of Austria, Duchess of Jülich-Cleves-Berg (1531-1581)

Magdalena of Austria, abbess of Hall in Tirol (1532-1590)

Catherine of Austria, Queen of Poland (1533-1572)

Eleanor of Austria, Duchess of Mantua (1534-1594)

Joanna of Austria, Princess of Portugal (1535-1573)

Barbara of Austria, Duchess of Ferrara (1539-1572)

Charles II, ruler of Inner Austria (1540-1590)

Carlos, Prince of Asturias (1545-1568)

Joanna of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1547-1578)

John of Austria (1547-1578)

Anna of Austria, Queen of Spain (1549-1580)

Emperor Rudolf II (1552-1612)

Ernest of Austria, ruler of Inner Austria, governor of the Spanish Netherlands (1553-1595)

Elisabeth of Austria, Queen of France (1554-1592)

Emperor Matthias (1557-1619)

Cardinal Andrew of Austria (1558-1600)

Maximilian III, ruler of Further Austria (1558-1618)

Albert (VII), ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1559-1621)

Charles of Austria, Margrave of Burgau (1560-1618)

Isabella Clara Eugenia, ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1566-1633)

Margaret of Austria, poor Clare (1567–1633)

Catalina Micaela of Spain, Duchess of Savoy (1567-1597)

Anne of Austria, Queen of Poland (1573-1598)

Maria Christina, Princess of Transylvania (1574-1621)

King Philip III (1578-1621)

Emperor Ferdinand II (1578-1637)

Eleanor of Austria, nun in Hall in Tirol (1582–1620)

Maximilian Ernest of Austria, Coadjutor of the Teutonic Order (1583-1616)

Maria of Austria, nun in Innsbrück (1584–1649)

Margaret of Austria, Queen of Spain (1584-1611)

Anna of Tyrol, Holy Roman Empress (1585-1618)

Leopold V, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1586-1632)

Constance of Austria, Queen of Poland (1588-1631)

Maria Maddalena of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1589-1631)

Charles of Austria, Bishop of Breslau (1590-1624)

Anne of Austria, Queen of France (1601-1666)

King Philip IV (1605-1665)

Maria Anna of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1606-1646)

Infante Carlos of Spain (1607–1632)

Emperor Ferdinand III (1608-1657)

Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand of Austria (1609 or 1610-1641)

Maria Anna, Electress of Bavaria (1610-1665)

Cecilia Renata of Austria, Queen of Poland (1611-1644)

Leopold Wilhelm of Austria (1614-1662)

Ferdinand Charles, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1628-1662)

John Joseph of Austria (1629-1679)

Isabella Clara of Austria, Duchess of Mantua, Montferrat, Nevers, Mayenne and Rethel (1629-1685)

Sigismund Francis, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1630-1665)

Maria Leopoldine of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1632-1649)

Ferdinand IV, King of the Romans (1633-1654)

Mariana of Austria, Queen of Spain (1634-1696)

Maria Theresa, Queen of France (1638-1683)

Emperor Leopold I (1640-1705)

Margaret Theresa of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1651-1673)

Eleonore of Austria, Queen of Poland (1653-1697)

Claudia Felicitas of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1653-1676)

Maria Anna Josepha of Austria, Electress of the Palatinate (1654-1689)

King Charles II (1661-1700)

Maria Antonia of Austria, Electress of Bavaria (1669-1692)

Emperor Joseph I (1678-1711)

Maria Elisabeth of Austria, governor of the Austrian Netherlands (1680-1741)

Maria Anna of Austria, Queen of Portugal (1683-1754)

Emperor Charles VI (1685-1740)

Maria Magdalena of Austria (1689–1743)

Maria Josepha of Austria, Queen of Poland (1699-1757)

Maria Amalia, Holy Roman Empress (1701-1756)

Maria Theresa of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1717-1780)

Cognatic:

The House of Habsburg (/ˈhæpsbɜːrɡ/; German: [ˈhaːpsbʊʁk]; alternatively spelled Hapsburg in English; German: Haus Habsburg, Spanish: Casa de Habsburgo, Hungarian: Habsburg-család), also House of Austria (German: Haus Österreich, Spanish: Casa de Austria),[3] was one of the most prominent royal houses of Europe in the 2nd millennium.

The house takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built in the 1020s in present-day Switzerland by Radbot of Klettgau, who named his fortress Habsburg. His grandson Otto II was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "Count of Habsburg" to his title. In 1273, Count Radbot's seventh-generation descendant Rudolph of Habsburg was elected King of the Romans. Taking advantage of the extinction of the Babenbergs and of his victory over Ottokar II of Bohemia at the battle on the Marchfeld in 1278, he subsequently moved the family's power base to Vienna, where the Habsburgs ruled until 1918.

The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs from 1440 until their extinction in the male line in 1740 and, after the death of Francis I, from 1765 until its dissolution in 1806. The house also produced kings of Bohemia, Hungary, Croatia, Spain, Portugal and Galicia-Lodomeria, with their respective colonies; rulers of several principalities in the Low Countries and Italy; and in the 19th century, emperors of Austria and of Austria-Hungary as well as one emperor of Mexico. The family split several times into parallel branches, most consequentially in the mid-16th century between its Spanish and Austrian branches following the abdication of Charles V. Although they ruled distinct territories, the different branches nevertheless maintained close relations and frequently intermarried.

The house of Habsburg still exists and owns the Austrian branch of the Order of the Golden Fleece and the Imperial and Royal Order of Saint George. As of early 2021, the head of the family is Karl von Habsburg.

The origins of Habsburg Castle's name 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.[4][5][6]

The Habsburg name was not continuously used by the family members, since they often emphasized their more prestigious princely titles. The dynasty was thus long known as the "house of Austria". Complementarily, in some circumstances the family members were identified by their place of birth. Charles V was known in his youth after his birthplace as Charles of Ghent. When he became king of Spain he was known as Charles of Spain, and after he was elected emperor, as Charles V (in French, Charles Quint).

In Spain, the dynasty was known as the Casa de Austria, including illegitimate sons such as John of Austria and John Joseph of Austria. The arms displayed in their simplest form were those of Austria, which the Habsburgs had made their own, at times impaled with the arms of the Duchy of Burgundy (ancient).

After Maria Theresa married Duke Francis Stephen of Lorraine, the idea of "Habsburg" as associated with ancestral Austrian rulership was used to show that the old dynasty continued as did all its inherited rights. When Francis I became Emperor of Austria, he adopted the old shield of Habsburg in his personal arms, together with Austria and Lorraine. This also reinforced the "Germanness" of the (French-speaking) Austrian Emperor and his claim to rule in Germany, not least against the Prussian Kings. Some younger sons who had no prospects of the throne were given the personal title of "count of Habsburg".

The surname of more recent members of the family such as Otto von Habsburg and Karl von Habsburg is taken to be "von Habsburg" or more completely "von Habsburg-Lothringen". Princes and members of the house use the tripartite arms adopted in the 18th century by Francis Stephen.

Timeline

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 forthwith farther back as the medieval Adalrich, Duke of Alsace, from the Etichonids from which Habsburg derives. His grandson Radbot of Klettgau founded the Habsburg Castle. That castle was the family seat during most of the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.

The Habsburgs expanded their influence through arranged marriages and incestuous relations with family royalty 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.[7][8]

By the second half of the 13th century, count Rudolph IV (1218–1291) had become an influential territorial lord in the area between the Vosges Mountains and Lake Constance. On 1 October 1273, he was elected as a compromise candidate as King of the Romans and received the name Rudolph I of Germany.[7] He then led a coalition against king Ottokar II of Bohemia who had taken advantage of the Great Interregnum in order to expand southwards, taking over the respective inheritances of the Babenberg (Austria, Styria, Savinja) and of the Spanheim (Carinthia and Carniola). In 1278, Rudolph and his allies defeated and killed Ottokar at the Battle of Marchfeld, and the lands he had acquired reverted to the German crown. With the Georgenberg Pact of 1286, Rudolph secured for his family the duchies of Austria and Styria. The southern portions of Ottokar's former realm, Carinthia, Carniola, and Savinja, went to Rudolph's allies from the House of Gorizia.[9][10]

Following Rudolph's death in 1291, Albert I's assassination in 1308, and Frederick the Fair's failure to secure the German/Imperial crown for himself, the Habsburgs temporarily lost their supremacy in the Empire. In the early 14th century they also focused on the Kingdom of Bohemia. After Václav III’s death on 4 August 1306, there were no male heirs remaining in the Přemyslid dynasty. Habsburg scion Rudolph I was then elected but only lasted a year. The Bohemian kingship was an elected position,[11] and the Habsburgs were only able to secure it on a hereditary basis much later in 1626, following their submission of the Czech lands during the Thirty Years' War. After 1307, subsequent Habsburg attempts to gain the Bohemian crown were frustrated first by Henry of Bohemia (a member of the House of Gorizia) and then by the House of Luxembourg.

Instead, they were able to expand southwards: in 1311, they took over Savinja; after the death of Henry in 1335, they assumed power in Carniola and Carinthia; and in 1369, they succeeded his daughter Margaret in Tyrol. After the death of Albert III of Gorizia in 1374, they gained a foothold at Pazin in central Istria, followed by Trieste in 1382. Meanwhile, the original home territories of the Habsburgs in what is now Switzerland, including the Aargau with Habsburg Castle, were lost in the 14th century to the expanding Swiss Confederacy after the battles of Morgarten (1315) and Sempach (1386). Habsburg Castle itself was finally lost to the Swiss in 1415.

Rudolf IV's brothers Albert III and Leopold III ignored his efforts to preserve the integrity of the family domains, and enacted the separation of the so-called Albertinian and Leopoldian family lines on 25 September 1379 by the Treaty of Neuberg. The former would maintain Austria proper (then called Niederösterreich but comprising modern Lower Austria and most of Upper Austria), while the latter would rule over lands then labeled Oberösterreich, namely Inner Austria (Innerösterreich) comprising Styria, Carinthia and Carniola, and Further Austria (Vorderösterreich) consisting of Tyrol and the western Habsburg lands in Alsace and Swabia.[7]

By marrying Elisabeth of Luxembourg, the daughter of Emperor Sigismund in 1437, Duke Albert V of the Albertine line (1397–1439) became the ruler of Bohemia and Hungary, again expanding the family's political horizons. The next year, Albert was crowned as King of the Romans, known as such as Albert II. Following his early death in a battle against the Ottomans in 1439 and that of his son Ladislaus Postumus in 1457, the Habsburgs lost Bohemia once more as well as Hungary, for several decades. However, with the extinction of the House of Celje in 1456 and the House of Wallsee-Enns in 1466/1483, they managed to absorb significant secular enclaves within their territories, and create a contiguous domain stretching from the border with Bohemia to the Adriatic sea.

After the death of Leopold's eldest son William in 1406, the Leopoldian line was further split among his brothers into the Inner Austrian territory under Ernest the Iron and a Tyrolean/Further Austrian line under Frederick of the empty pockets. In 1440, Ernest's son Frederick III was chosen by the electoral college to succeed Albert II as the king. Several Habsburg kings had attempted to gain the imperial dignity 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.[7]

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 until 1806.[7]

Through the forged document called privilegium maius (1358/59), Duke Rudolf IV (1339–1365) introduced the title of Archduke to place the Habsburgs on a par with the Prince-electors of the Empire, since Emperor Charles IV had omitted to give them the electoral dignity in his Golden Bull of 1356. Charles, however, refused to recognize the title, as did his immediate successors.

Duke Ernest the Iron and his descendants unilaterally assumed the title "archduke". That title was only officially recognized in 1453 by Emperor Frederick III, himself a Habsburg.[12] Frederick 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 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, apparently only started to use the title after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy in 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. 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.

In 1457 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 favor of Frederick's son Maximilian I.

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. Frederick's aim was to make Austria a united country, stretching from the Rhine to the Mur and Leitha.[7]

On the external front, one of Frederick's main achievements was the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), in which he coerced Charles the Bold of Burgundy to give his daughter Mary of Burgundy as wife to Frederick's son Maximilian.[7] 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 favor of Philip in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493.[13]

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. Emperor Charles V would be the last to be crowned by the Pope himself, at Bologna in 1530.[13]

Maximilian's rule (1493–1519) was a time of dramatic expansion for the Habsburgs. In 1497, Maximilian's son Philip, known as the Handsome or the Fair, married Joanna of Castile, also known as Joan the Mad, heiress of the Castile. Phillip and Joan had six children, the eldest of whom became Emperor Charles V and ruled the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon (including their colonies in the New World), Southern Italy, Austria, and the Low Countries.[14]

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 Louis's sister Anna. The wedding was celebrated in grand style on 22 July 1515. All these 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 the latter's designs were ultimately successful: upon Louis's death in battle in 1526, Ferdinand became king of Bohemia and Hungary.

The Habsburg dynasty achieved its highest position when Charles V was elected Holy Roman Emperor. Much of Charles's reign was dedicated to the fight against Protestantism, which led to its eradication throughout vast areas under Habsburg control.

After the abdication of Charles V in 1556, the Habsburg dynasty split into the branch of the Austrian (or German) Habsburgs, led by Ferdinand, and the branch of the Spanish Habsburgs, initially led by Charles's son Philip.[15] Ferdinand I, King of Bohemia, Hungary,[16] and archduke of Austria in the name of his brother Charles V became suo jure monarch as well as the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperor (designated as successor already in 1531). Philip became King of Spain and its colonial empire as Philip II, and ruler of the Habsburg domains in Italy and the Low Countries. The Spanish Habsburgs also ruled Portugal for a time, known there as the Philippine dynasty (1580–1640).

The Seventeen Provinces and the Duchy of Milan were in personal union under the King of Spain, but remained part of the Holy Roman Empire. Furthermore, the Spanish king had claims on Hungary and Bohemia. In the secret Oñate treaty of 29 July 1617, the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs settled their mutual claims.

The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by frequent consanguineous marriages, resulting in a cumulatively deleterious effect on their gene pool. Health impairments due to inbreeding including epilepsy, insanity and death. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests inbreeding may have played a factor in their extinction.[17] Numerous members of the family showed specific facial deformities: an enlarged lower jaw with an extended chin known as mandibular prognathism or "Habsburg jaw", a large nose with hump and hanging tip ("Habsburg nose"), and an everted lower lip ("Habsburg lip"). The latter two are signs of maxillary deficiency. A 2019 study found that the degree of mandibular prognasthism in the Habsburg family shows a statistically significant correlation with the degree of inbreeding. A correlation between maxillary deficiency and degree of inbreeding was also present but was not statistically significant.[18][19] Other scientific studies, however, dispute the ideas of any linkage between fertility and consanguinity.[20]

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".[21][17]

The death of Charles II of Spain in 1700 led to the War of the Spanish Succession, and that of Emperor Charles VI in 1740 led to the War of the Austrian Succession. In the former, the House of Bourbon won the conflict and put a final end to the Habsburg rule in Spain. The latter, however, was won by Maria Theresa and led to the succession of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Haus Habsburg-Lothringen) becoming the new main branch of the dynasty, in the person of Maria Theresa's son, Joseph II. This new House was created by the marriage between Maria Theresa of Habsburg and Francis Stephan, Duke of Lorraine[22] (both of them were great-grandchildren of Habsburg emperor Ferdinand III, but from different empresses) being this new House a cadet branch of the female line of the House of Habsburg and the male line of the House of Lorraine. It is thought that extensive intra-family marriages within Spanish and Austrian lines contributed to the extinction of the main line.

On 6 August 1806, Emperor Francis I dissolved the Holy Roman Empire under pressure from Napoleon's reorganization of Germany. In anticipation of the loss of his title of Holy Roman Emperor, Francis had 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.[24] Under this arrangement, the Hungarians referred to their ruler as king and never emperor (see k. u. k.). 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 of Austria (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 that 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, on 31 May 1961 renounced all claims to the throne.

In the interwar period, the House of Habsburg was a vehement opponent of National Socialism and Communism. In Germany, Adolf Hitler diametrically opposed the centuries-old Habsburg principles of largely allowing local communities under their rule to maintain traditional ethnic, religious and language practices, and he bristled with hatred against the Habsburg family. During the Second World War there was a strong Habsburg resistance movement in Central Europe, which was radically persecuted by the Nazis and the Gestapo. The unofficial leader of these groups was Otto von Habsburg, who campaigned against the Nazis and for a free Central Europe in France and the United States. Most of the resistance fighters, such as Heinrich Maier, who successfully passed on production sites and plans for V-2 rockets, Tiger tanks and aircraft to the Allies, were executed. The Habsburg family played a leading role in the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Communist Eastern Bloc.[25][26][27][28][29]

As they accumulated crowns and titles, the Habsburgs developed a unique family tradition of multilingualism that evolved over the centuries. The Holy Roman Empire had been multilingual from the start, even though most of its emperors were native German-speakers.[30] The language issue within the Empire became gradually more salient as the non-religious use of Latin declined and that of national languages gained prominence during the High Middle Ages. Emperor Charles IV of Luxembourg was known to be fluent in Czech, French, German, Italian and Latin.[31]

The last section of his Golden Bull of 1356 specifies that the Empire's secular prince-electors "should be instructed in the varieties of the different dialects and languages" and that "since they are expected in all likelihood to have naturally acquired the German language, and to have been taught it from their infancy, [they] shall be instructed in the grammar of the Italian and Slavic tongues, beginning with the seventh year of their age so that, before the fourteenth year of their age, they may be learned in the same".[32] In the early 15th century, Strasbourg-based chronicler Jakob Twinger von Königshofen asserted that Charlemagne had mastered six languages, even though he had a preference for German.[30]:306

In the early years of the family's ascendancy, neither Rudolf I nor Albert I appear to have spoken French.[30]:278 By contrast, Charles V of Habsburg is well known some having been fluent in several languages. He was native in French and also knew Dutch from his youth in Flanders. He later added some Castilian Spanish, which he was required to learn by the Castilian Cortes Generales. He could also speak some Basque, acquired by the influence of the Basque secretaries serving in the royal court.[33] He gained a decent command of German following the Imperial election of 1519, though he never spoke it as well as French.[34] A witticism sometimes attributed to Charles was: "I speak Spanish/Latin [depending on the source] to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse."[35]

Latin was the administrative language of the Empire until the aggressive promotion of German by Joseph II in the late 18th century, which was partly reversed by his successors. From the 16th century, most if not all Habsburgs spoke French as well as German, and many also spoke Italian.[citation needed] Ferdinand I, Maximilian II and Rudolf II addressed the Bohemian Assembly in Czech, even though it is not clear that they were fluent. By contrast, there is little evidence that later Habsburgs in the 17th and 18th centuries spoke Czech, with the probable exception of Ferdinand III who made several stays in Bohemia and appears to have spoken Czech while there. In the 19th century, Francis I had notions of Czech, and Ferdinand I spoke it decently.[36] Maximilian II spoke Spanish, Latin, Hungarian and Italian in addition to French and German and his above-mentioned notions of Czech. Maria Theresa spoke German, Italian, French, Spanish, Latin, and added Hungarian before she became Empress.[37]

Franz Joseph received a bilingual early education in French and German, then added Czech and Hungarian and later Italian and Polish. He also learned Latin and Greek.[38] Even so, he viewed himself as German, and once wrote to Napoleon III "Nein, ich bin ein Deutscher Fürst".[39] After the end of the Habsburg Monarchy, Otto von Habsburg was fluent in English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese.[40]

Habsburg Castle, Aargau, Switzerland

Graz Castle [de]

Linz Castle

Hofburg Palace, Vienna

Hofburg, Innsbruck

Old Laxenburg Castle

Palace of Charles V, Granada

Palace of Margaret of Austria in Mechelen

Prague Castle

Bratislava Castle

Royal Palace of Milan

Royal Palace of Naples

El Escorial Palace near Madrid

Ambras Castle, Innsbruck

Neugebäude Palace near Vienna

Buda Castle

Royal Palace of Gödöllő near Budapest

Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna

Hetzendorf Palace, Vienna

Palace of Charles of Lorraine in Brussels

Royal Villa of Monza

Habsburg Hunting Palace in Cieszyn, Poland

Habsburg Palace in Żywiec, Poland

Palais Erzherzog Wilhelm in Vienna

Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl, Austria

Miramare Castle, Trieste

Villa Wartholz, Reichenau an der Rax

Hermesvilla in Vienna

Konopiště Castle near Benešov, Czechia

Achilleion Palace in Corfu

Schloss Wilhelminenberg, Vienna

Casa Austria (Villa Swoboda [de]) outside Salzburg

The Habsburgs' monarchical positions included:

Before Rudolph rose to German king, the Habsburgs were Counts of Baden in what is today southwestern Germany and Switzerland.[43]

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 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.

The abdications of Charles V in 1556 ended his formal authority over Ferdinand and made him suo jure ruler in Austria, Bohemia, Hungary, as well as Holy Roman Emperor.

Ferdinand's inheritance had been split in 1564 among his children, with Maximilian taking the Imperial crown and his younger brother Archduke Charles II ruling over 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). Charles's son and successor 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.

Habsburg Spain was a personal union between the Crowns of Castile and Aragon; Aragon was itself divided into the Kingdoms of Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Majorca, Naples, Sicily, Malta and Sardinia.[47] From 1581, they were kings of Portugal until they renounced this title in the 1668 Treaty of Lisbon. They were also Dukes of Milan, Lord of the Americas, and holder of multiple titles from territories within the Habsburg Netherlands. A full listing can be seen here.

The War of the Spanish Succession took place after the extinction of the Spanish Habsburg line, to determine the inheritance of Charles II.

Charles the Bold controlled not only Burgundy (both dukedom and county) but also Flanders and the broader Burgundian Netherlands. Frederick III managed to secure the marriage of Charles's only daughter, Mary of Burgundy, to his son Maximilian. The wedding took place on the evening of 16 August 1477, after the death of Charles.[48] 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.

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 War of the Austrian Succession took place after the extinction of the male line of the Austrian Habsburg line upon the death of Charles VI. The direct Habsburg line itself became totally extinct with the death of Maria Theresa of Austria, when it was followed by the House of Lorraine, styled of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Queen Maria Christina of Austria of Spain, great-granddaughter of Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor above. Wife of Alfonso XII of Spain and mother of Alfonso XIII of the House of Bourbon. Alfonso XIII's wife Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg was descended from King George I of Great Britain from the Habsburg Leopold Line {above}.

The House of Habsburg-Lorraine retained Austria and attached possessions after the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire; see below.

A son of Leopold II was Archduke Rainer of Austria whose wife was from the House of Savoy; a daughter Adelaide, Queen of Sardina was the wife of King Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy, and Sardinia and King of Italy. Their Children married into the Royal Houses of Bonaparte; Saxe-Coburg and Gotha {Bragança} {Portugal}; Savoy {Spain}; and the Dukedoms of Montferrat and Chablis.

(→Family Tree)

Francis Stephen assigned the grand duchy of Tuscany to his second son Peter Leopold, who in turn assigned it to his second son upon his accession as Holy Roman Emperor. Tuscany remained the domain of this cadet branch of the family until Italian unification.

The duchy of Modena was assigned to a minor branch of the family by the Congress of Vienna. It was lost to Italian unification. The Dukes named their line the House of Austria-Este, as they were descended from the daughter of the last D'Este Duke of Modena.

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 favor.

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.

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 Campanas, Querétaro, in 1867 by the republican forces of Benito Juárez.

Charles I was expelled from his domains after World War I and the empire was abolished.[43]

This gallery only features portraits believed to be based on likeness. It does not include possibly imaginary depictions, such as those of early Habsburg rulers created by Anton Boys for Archduke Ferdinand II in the late 16th century. It also does not display family members who failed to reach adult age or did not play any historically significant role, including most of those born in the late 19th and 20th century in line with the erosion of the Habsburg family's historical significance after World War I.

Individuals are listed by chronological order of birth. The title of Archduke/Archduchess belonged by birthright to all Austrian Habsburgs, and is generally omitted unless the individual used no other title.

King Rudolf I (1218-1291)

Duke Rudolf IV (1339-1365)

King Albert II (1397-1439)

Emperor Frederick III (1415-1493)

Sigismund, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1427-1496)

King Ladislaus the Posthumous (1440-1457)

Emperor Maximilian I (1459-1519)

Kunigunde of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1465-1520)

Philip the Handsome, King of Castile (1478-1506)

Margaret of Austria, Duchess of Savoy (1480-1530)

Eleanor of Austria, Queen of Portugal then of France (1498-1558)

Emperor Charles V (1500-1558)

Isabella of Austria, Queen of Denmark, Norway and Sweden (1501-1526)

Emperor Ferdinand I (1503-1564)

Mary of Hungary, Governor of the Netherlands (1505-1558)

George of Austria, Prince-Bishop of Liège (1505-1557)

Margaret of Parma (1522-1586)

Elizabeth of Austria, Queen of Poland (1526–1545)

King Philip II (1527-1598)

Emperor Maximilian II (1527-1576)

Maria of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1528-1603)

Anna of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1528-1590)

Ferdinand II, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1529-1595)

Maria of Austria, Duchess of Jülich-Cleves-Berg (1531-1581)

Magdalena of Austria, abbess of Hall in Tirol (1532-1590)

Catherine of Austria, Queen of Poland (1533-1572)

Eleanor of Austria, Duchess of Mantua (1534-1594)

Joanna of Austria, Princess of Portugal (1535-1573)

Barbara of Austria, Duchess of Ferrara (1539-1572)

Charles II, ruler of Inner Austria (1540-1590)

Carlos, Prince of Asturias (1545-1568)

Joanna of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1547-1578)

John of Austria (1547-1578)

Anna of Austria, Queen of Spain (1549-1580)

Emperor Rudolf II (1552-1612)

Ernest of Austria, ruler of Inner Austria, governor of the Spanish Netherlands (1553-1595)

Elisabeth of Austria, Queen of France (1554-1592)

Emperor Matthias (1557-1619)

Cardinal Andrew of Austria (1558-1600)

Maximilian III, ruler of Further Austria (1558-1618)

Albert (VII), ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1559-1621)

Charles of Austria, Margrave of Burgau (1560-1618)

Isabella Clara Eugenia, ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1566-1633)

Margaret of Austria, poor Clare (1567–1633)

Catalina Micaela of Spain, Duchess of Savoy (1567-1597)

Anne of Austria, Queen of Poland (1573-1598)

Maria Christina, Princess of Transylvania (1574-1621)

King Philip III (1578-1621)

Emperor Ferdinand II (1578-1637)

Eleanor of Austria, nun in Hall in Tirol (1582–1620)

Maximilian Ernest of Austria, Coadjutor of the Teutonic Order (1583-1616)

Maria of Austria, nun in Innsbrück (1584–1649)

Margaret of Austria, Queen of Spain (1584-1611)

Anna of Tyrol, Holy Roman Empress (1585-1618)

Leopold V, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1586-1632)

Constance of Austria, Queen of Poland (1588-1631)

Maria Maddalena of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1589-1631)

Charles of Austria, Bishop of Breslau (1590-1624)

Anne of Austria, Queen of France (1601-1666)

King Philip IV (1605-1665)

Maria Anna of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1606-1646)

Infante Carlos of Spain (1607–1632)

Emperor Ferdinand III (1608-1657)

Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand of Austria (1609 or 1610-1641)

Maria Anna, Electress of Bavaria (1610-1665)

Cecilia Renata of Austria, Queen of Poland (1611-1644)

Leopold Wilhelm of Austria (1614-1662)

Ferdinand Charles, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1628-1662)

John Joseph of Austria (1629-1679)

Isabella Clara of Austria, Duchess of Mantua, Montferrat, Nevers, Mayenne and Rethel (1629-1685)

Sigismund Francis, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1630-1665)

Maria Leopoldine of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1632-1649)

Ferdinand IV, King of the Romans (1633-1654)

Mariana of Austria, Queen of Spain (1634-1696)

Maria Theresa, Queen of France (1638-1683)

Emperor Leopold I (1640-1705)

Margaret Theresa of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1651-1673)

Eleonore of Austria, Queen of Poland (1653-1697)

Claudia Felicitas of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1653-1676)

Maria Anna Josepha of Austria, Electress of the Palatinate (1654-1689)

King Charles II (1661-1700)

Maria Antonia of Austria, Electress of Bavaria (1669-1692)

Emperor Joseph I (1678-1711)

Maria Elisabeth of Austria, governor of the Austrian Netherlands (1680-1741)

Maria Anna of Austria, Queen of Portugal (1683-1754)

Emperor Charles VI (1685-1740)

Maria Magdalena of Austria (1689–1743)

Maria Josepha of Austria, Queen of Poland (1699-1757)

Maria Amalia, Holy Roman Empress (1701-1756)

Maria Theresa of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1717-1780)

Cognatic:

The House of Habsburg (/ˈhæpsbɜːrɡ/; German: [ˈhaːpsbʊʁk]; alternatively spelled Hapsburg in English; German: Haus Habsburg, Spanish: Casa de Habsburgo, Hungarian: Habsburg-család), also House of Austria (German: Haus Österreich, Spanish: Casa de Austria),[3] was one of the most prominent royal houses of Europe in the 2nd millennium.

The house takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built in the 1020s in present-day Switzerland by Radbot of Klettgau, who named his fortress Habsburg. His grandson Otto II was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "Count of Habsburg" to his title. In 1273, Count Radbot's seventh-generation descendant Rudolph of Habsburg was elected King of the Romans. Taking advantage of the extinction of the Babenbergs and of his victory over Ottokar II of Bohemia at the battle on the Marchfeld in 1278, he subsequently moved the family's power base to Vienna, where the Habsburgs ruled until 1918.

The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs from 1440 until their extinction in the male line in 1740 and, after the death of Francis I, from 1765 until its dissolution in 1806. The house also produced kings of Bohemia, Hungary, Croatia, Spain, Portugal and Galicia-Lodomeria, with their respective colonies; rulers of several principalities in the Low Countries and Italy; and in the 19th century, emperors of Austria and of Austria-Hungary as well as one emperor of Mexico. The family split several times into parallel branches, most consequentially in the mid-16th century between its Spanish and Austrian branches following the abdication of Charles V. Although they ruled distinct territories, the different branches nevertheless maintained close relations and frequently intermarried.

The house of Habsburg still exists and owns the Austrian branch of the Order of the Golden Fleece and the Imperial and Royal Order of Saint George. As of early 2021, the head of the family is Karl von Habsburg.

The origins of Habsburg Castle's name 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.[4][5][6]

The Habsburg name was not continuously used by the family members, since they often emphasized their more prestigious princely titles. The dynasty was thus long known as the "house of Austria". Complementarily, in some circumstances the family members were identified by their place of birth. Charles V was known in his youth after his birthplace as Charles of Ghent. When he became king of Spain he was known as Charles of Spain, and after he was elected emperor, as Charles V (in French, Charles Quint).

In Spain, the dynasty was known as the Casa de Austria, including illegitimate sons such as John of Austria and John Joseph of Austria. The arms displayed in their simplest form were those of Austria, which the Habsburgs had made their own, at times impaled with the arms of the Duchy of Burgundy (ancient).

After Maria Theresa married Duke Francis Stephen of Lorraine, the idea of "Habsburg" as associated with ancestral Austrian rulership was used to show that the old dynasty continued as did all its inherited rights. When Francis I became Emperor of Austria, he adopted the old shield of Habsburg in his personal arms, together with Austria and Lorraine. This also reinforced the "Germanness" of the (French-speaking) Austrian Emperor and his claim to rule in Germany, not least against the Prussian Kings. Some younger sons who had no prospects of the throne were given the personal title of "count of Habsburg".

The surname of more recent members of the family such as Otto von Habsburg and Karl von Habsburg is taken to be "von Habsburg" or more completely "von Habsburg-Lothringen". Princes and members of the house use the tripartite arms adopted in the 18th century by Francis Stephen.

Timeline

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 forthwith farther back as the medieval Adalrich, Duke of Alsace, from the Etichonids from which Habsburg derives. His grandson Radbot of Klettgau founded the Habsburg Castle. That castle was the family seat during most of the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.

The Habsburgs expanded their influence through arranged marriages and incestuous relations with family royalty 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.[7][8]

By the second half of the 13th century, count Rudolph IV (1218–1291) had become an influential territorial lord in the area between the Vosges Mountains and Lake Constance. On 1 October 1273, he was elected as a compromise candidate as King of the Romans and received the name Rudolph I of Germany.[7] He then led a coalition against king Ottokar II of Bohemia who had taken advantage of the Great Interregnum in order to expand southwards, taking over the respective inheritances of the Babenberg (Austria, Styria, Savinja) and of the Spanheim (Carinthia and Carniola). In 1278, Rudolph and his allies defeated and killed Ottokar at the Battle of Marchfeld, and the lands he had acquired reverted to the German crown. With the Georgenberg Pact of 1286, Rudolph secured for his family the duchies of Austria and Styria. The southern portions of Ottokar's former realm, Carinthia, Carniola, and Savinja, went to Rudolph's allies from the House of Gorizia.[9][10]

Following Rudolph's death in 1291, Albert I's assassination in 1308, and Frederick the Fair's failure to secure the German/Imperial crown for himself, the Habsburgs temporarily lost their supremacy in the Empire. In the early 14th century they also focused on the Kingdom of Bohemia. After Václav III’s death on 4 August 1306, there were no male heirs remaining in the Přemyslid dynasty. Habsburg scion Rudolph I was then elected but only lasted a year. The Bohemian kingship was an elected position,[11] and the Habsburgs were only able to secure it on a hereditary basis much later in 1626, following their submission of the Czech lands during the Thirty Years' War. After 1307, subsequent Habsburg attempts to gain the Bohemian crown were frustrated first by Henry of Bohemia (a member of the House of Gorizia) and then by the House of Luxembourg.

Instead, they were able to expand southwards: in 1311, they took over Savinja; after the death of Henry in 1335, they assumed power in Carniola and Carinthia; and in 1369, they succeeded his daughter Margaret in Tyrol. After the death of Albert III of Gorizia in 1374, they gained a foothold at Pazin in central Istria, followed by Trieste in 1382. Meanwhile, the original home territories of the Habsburgs in what is now Switzerland, including the Aargau with Habsburg Castle, were lost in the 14th century to the expanding Swiss Confederacy after the battles of Morgarten (1315) and Sempach (1386). Habsburg Castle itself was finally lost to the Swiss in 1415.

Rudolf IV's brothers Albert III and Leopold III ignored his efforts to preserve the integrity of the family domains, and enacted the separation of the so-called Albertinian and Leopoldian family lines on 25 September 1379 by the Treaty of Neuberg. The former would maintain Austria proper (then called Niederösterreich but comprising modern Lower Austria and most of Upper Austria), while the latter would rule over lands then labeled Oberösterreich, namely Inner Austria (Innerösterreich) comprising Styria, Carinthia and Carniola, and Further Austria (Vorderösterreich) consisting of Tyrol and the western Habsburg lands in Alsace and Swabia.[7]

By marrying Elisabeth of Luxembourg, the daughter of Emperor Sigismund in 1437, Duke Albert V of the Albertine line (1397–1439) became the ruler of Bohemia and Hungary, again expanding the family's political horizons. The next year, Albert was crowned as King of the Romans, known as such as Albert II. Following his early death in a battle against the Ottomans in 1439 and that of his son Ladislaus Postumus in 1457, the Habsburgs lost Bohemia once more as well as Hungary, for several decades. However, with the extinction of the House of Celje in 1456 and the House of Wallsee-Enns in 1466/1483, they managed to absorb significant secular enclaves within their territories, and create a contiguous domain stretching from the border with Bohemia to the Adriatic sea.

After the death of Leopold's eldest son William in 1406, the Leopoldian line was further split among his brothers into the Inner Austrian territory under Ernest the Iron and a Tyrolean/Further Austrian line under Frederick of the empty pockets. In 1440, Ernest's son Frederick III was chosen by the electoral college to succeed Albert II as the king. Several Habsburg kings had attempted to gain the imperial dignity 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.[7]

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 until 1806.[7]

Through the forged document called privilegium maius (1358/59), Duke Rudolf IV (1339–1365) introduced the title of Archduke to place the Habsburgs on a par with the Prince-electors of the Empire, since Emperor Charles IV had omitted to give them the electoral dignity in his Golden Bull of 1356. Charles, however, refused to recognize the title, as did his immediate successors.

Duke Ernest the Iron and his descendants unilaterally assumed the title "archduke". That title was only officially recognized in 1453 by Emperor Frederick III, himself a Habsburg.[12] Frederick 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 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, apparently only started to use the title after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy in 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. 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.

In 1457 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 favor of Frederick's son Maximilian I.

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. Frederick's aim was to make Austria a united country, stretching from the Rhine to the Mur and Leitha.[7]

On the external front, one of Frederick's main achievements was the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), in which he coerced Charles the Bold of Burgundy to give his daughter Mary of Burgundy as wife to Frederick's son Maximilian.[7] 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 favor of Philip in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493.[13]

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. Emperor Charles V would be the last to be crowned by the Pope himself, at Bologna in 1530.[13]

Maximilian's rule (1493–1519) was a time of dramatic expansion for the Habsburgs. In 1497, Maximilian's son Philip, known as the Handsome or the Fair, married Joanna of Castile, also known as Joan the Mad, heiress of the Castile. Phillip and Joan had six children, the eldest of whom became Emperor Charles V and ruled the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon (including their colonies in the New World), Southern Italy, Austria, and the Low Countries.[14]

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 Louis's sister Anna. The wedding was celebrated in grand style on 22 July 1515. All these 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 the latter's designs were ultimately successful: upon Louis's death in battle in 1526, Ferdinand became king of Bohemia and Hungary.

The Habsburg dynasty achieved its highest position when Charles V was elected Holy Roman Emperor. Much of Charles's reign was dedicated to the fight against Protestantism, which led to its eradication throughout vast areas under Habsburg control.

After the abdication of Charles V in 1556, the Habsburg dynasty split into the branch of the Austrian (or German) Habsburgs, led by Ferdinand, and the branch of the Spanish Habsburgs, initially led by Charles's son Philip.[15] Ferdinand I, King of Bohemia, Hungary,[16] and archduke of Austria in the name of his brother Charles V became suo jure monarch as well as the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperor (designated as successor already in 1531). Philip became King of Spain and its colonial empire as Philip II, and ruler of the Habsburg domains in Italy and the Low Countries. The Spanish Habsburgs also ruled Portugal for a time, known there as the Philippine dynasty (1580–1640).

The Seventeen Provinces and the Duchy of Milan were in personal union under the King of Spain, but remained part of the Holy Roman Empire. Furthermore, the Spanish king had claims on Hungary and Bohemia. In the secret Oñate treaty of 29 July 1617, the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs settled their mutual claims.

The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by frequent consanguineous marriages, resulting in a cumulatively deleterious effect on their gene pool. Health impairments due to inbreeding including epilepsy, insanity and death. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests inbreeding may have played a factor in their extinction.[17] Numerous members of the family showed specific facial deformities: an enlarged lower jaw with an extended chin known as mandibular prognathism or "Habsburg jaw", a large nose with hump and hanging tip ("Habsburg nose"), and an everted lower lip ("Habsburg lip"). The latter two are signs of maxillary deficiency. A 2019 study found that the degree of mandibular prognasthism in the Habsburg family shows a statistically significant correlation with the degree of inbreeding. A correlation between maxillary deficiency and degree of inbreeding was also present but was not statistically significant.[18][19] Other scientific studies, however, dispute the ideas of any linkage between fertility and consanguinity.[20]

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".[21][17]

The death of Charles II of Spain in 1700 led to the War of the Spanish Succession, and that of Emperor Charles VI in 1740 led to the War of the Austrian Succession. In the former, the House of Bourbon won the conflict and put a final end to the Habsburg rule in Spain. The latter, however, was won by Maria Theresa and led to the succession of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Haus Habsburg-Lothringen) becoming the new main branch of the dynasty, in the person of Maria Theresa's son, Joseph II. This new House was created by the marriage between Maria Theresa of Habsburg and Francis Stephan, Duke of Lorraine[22] (both of them were great-grandchildren of Habsburg emperor Ferdinand III, but from different empresses) being this new House a cadet branch of the female line of the House of Habsburg and the male line of the House of Lorraine. It is thought that extensive intra-family marriages within Spanish and Austrian lines contributed to the extinction of the main line.

On 6 August 1806, Emperor Francis I dissolved the Holy Roman Empire under pressure from Napoleon's reorganization of Germany. In anticipation of the loss of his title of Holy Roman Emperor, Francis had 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.[24] Under this arrangement, the Hungarians referred to their ruler as king and never emperor (see k. u. k.). 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 of Austria (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 that 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, on 31 May 1961 renounced all claims to the throne.

In the interwar period, the House of Habsburg was a vehement opponent of National Socialism and Communism. In Germany, Adolf Hitler diametrically opposed the centuries-old Habsburg principles of largely allowing local communities under their rule to maintain traditional ethnic, religious and language practices, and he bristled with hatred against the Habsburg family. During the Second World War there was a strong Habsburg resistance movement in Central Europe, which was radically persecuted by the Nazis and the Gestapo. The unofficial leader of these groups was Otto von Habsburg, who campaigned against the Nazis and for a free Central Europe in France and the United States. Most of the resistance fighters, such as Heinrich Maier, who successfully passed on production sites and plans for V-2 rockets, Tiger tanks and aircraft to the Allies, were executed. The Habsburg family played a leading role in the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Communist Eastern Bloc.[25][26][27][28][29]

As they accumulated crowns and titles, the Habsburgs developed a unique family tradition of multilingualism that evolved over the centuries. The Holy Roman Empire had been multilingual from the start, even though most of its emperors were native German-speakers.[30] The language issue within the Empire became gradually more salient as the non-religious use of Latin declined and that of national languages gained prominence during the High Middle Ages. Emperor Charles IV of Luxembourg was known to be fluent in Czech, French, German, Italian and Latin.[31]

The last section of his Golden Bull of 1356 specifies that the Empire's secular prince-electors "should be instructed in the varieties of the different dialects and languages" and that "since they are expected in all likelihood to have naturally acquired the German language, and to have been taught it from their infancy, [they] shall be instructed in the grammar of the Italian and Slavic tongues, beginning with the seventh year of their age so that, before the fourteenth year of their age, they may be learned in the same".[32] In the early 15th century, Strasbourg-based chronicler Jakob Twinger von Königshofen asserted that Charlemagne had mastered six languages, even though he had a preference for German.[30]:306

In the early years of the family's ascendancy, neither Rudolf I nor Albert I appear to have spoken French.[30]:278 By contrast, Charles V of Habsburg is well known some having been fluent in several languages. He was native in French and also knew Dutch from his youth in Flanders. He later added some Castilian Spanish, which he was required to learn by the Castilian Cortes Generales. He could also speak some Basque, acquired by the influence of the Basque secretaries serving in the royal court.[33] He gained a decent command of German following the Imperial election of 1519, though he never spoke it as well as French.[34] A witticism sometimes attributed to Charles was: "I speak Spanish/Latin [depending on the source] to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse."[35]

Latin was the administrative language of the Empire until the aggressive promotion of German by Joseph II in the late 18th century, which was partly reversed by his successors. From the 16th century, most if not all Habsburgs spoke French as well as German, and many also spoke Italian.[citation needed] Ferdinand I, Maximilian II and Rudolf II addressed the Bohemian Assembly in Czech, even though it is not clear that they were fluent. By contrast, there is little evidence that later Habsburgs in the 17th and 18th centuries spoke Czech, with the probable exception of Ferdinand III who made several stays in Bohemia and appears to have spoken Czech while there. In the 19th century, Francis I had notions of Czech, and Ferdinand I spoke it decently.[36] Maximilian II spoke Spanish, Latin, Hungarian and Italian in addition to French and German and his above-mentioned notions of Czech. Maria Theresa spoke German, Italian, French, Spanish, Latin, and added Hungarian before she became Empress.[37]

Franz Joseph received a bilingual early education in French and German, then added Czech and Hungarian and later Italian and Polish. He also learned Latin and Greek.[38] Even so, he viewed himself as German, and once wrote to Napoleon III "Nein, ich bin ein Deutscher Fürst".[39] After the end of the Habsburg Monarchy, Otto von Habsburg was fluent in English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese.[40]

Habsburg Castle, Aargau, Switzerland

Graz Castle [de]

Linz Castle

Hofburg Palace, Vienna

Hofburg, Innsbruck

Old Laxenburg Castle

Palace of Charles V, Granada

Palace of Margaret of Austria in Mechelen

Prague Castle

Bratislava Castle

Royal Palace of Milan

Royal Palace of Naples

El Escorial Palace near Madrid

Ambras Castle, Innsbruck

Neugebäude Palace near Vienna

Buda Castle

Royal Palace of Gödöllő near Budapest

Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna

Hetzendorf Palace, Vienna

Palace of Charles of Lorraine in Brussels

Royal Villa of Monza

Habsburg Hunting Palace in Cieszyn, Poland

Habsburg Palace in Żywiec, Poland

Palais Erzherzog Wilhelm in Vienna

Kaiservilla in Bad Ischl, Austria

Miramare Castle, Trieste

Villa Wartholz, Reichenau an der Rax

Hermesvilla in Vienna

Konopiště Castle near Benešov, Czechia

Achilleion Palace in Corfu

Schloss Wilhelminenberg, Vienna

Casa Austria (Villa Swoboda [de]) outside Salzburg

The Habsburgs' monarchical positions included:

Before Rudolph rose to German king, the Habsburgs were Counts of Baden in what is today southwestern Germany and Switzerland.[43]

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 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.

The abdications of Charles V in 1556 ended his formal authority over Ferdinand and made him suo jure ruler in Austria, Bohemia, Hungary, as well as Holy Roman Emperor.

Ferdinand's inheritance had been split in 1564 among his children, with Maximilian taking the Imperial crown and his younger brother Archduke Charles II ruling over 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). Charles's son and successor 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.

Habsburg Spain was a personal union between the Crowns of Castile and Aragon; Aragon was itself divided into the Kingdoms of Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Majorca, Naples, Sicily, Malta and Sardinia.[47] From 1581, they were kings of Portugal until they renounced this title in the 1668 Treaty of Lisbon. They were also Dukes of Milan, Lord of the Americas, and holder of multiple titles from territories within the Habsburg Netherlands. A full listing can be seen here.

The War of the Spanish Succession took place after the extinction of the Spanish Habsburg line, to determine the inheritance of Charles II.

Charles the Bold controlled not only Burgundy (both dukedom and county) but also Flanders and the broader Burgundian Netherlands. Frederick III managed to secure the marriage of Charles's only daughter, Mary of Burgundy, to his son Maximilian. The wedding took place on the evening of 16 August 1477, after the death of Charles.[48] 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.

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 War of the Austrian Succession took place after the extinction of the male line of the Austrian Habsburg line upon the death of Charles VI. The direct Habsburg line itself became totally extinct with the death of Maria Theresa of Austria, when it was followed by the House of Lorraine, styled of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Queen Maria Christina of Austria of Spain, great-granddaughter of Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor above. Wife of Alfonso XII of Spain and mother of Alfonso XIII of the House of Bourbon. Alfonso XIII's wife Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg was descended from King George I of Great Britain from the Habsburg Leopold Line {above}.

The House of Habsburg-Lorraine retained Austria and attached possessions after the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire; see below.

A son of Leopold II was Archduke Rainer of Austria whose wife was from the House of Savoy; a daughter Adelaide, Queen of Sardina was the wife of King Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy, and Sardinia and King of Italy. Their Children married into the Royal Houses of Bonaparte; Saxe-Coburg and Gotha {Bragança} {Portugal}; Savoy {Spain}; and the Dukedoms of Montferrat and Chablis.

(→Family Tree)

Francis Stephen assigned the grand duchy of Tuscany to his second son Peter Leopold, who in turn assigned it to his second son upon his accession as Holy Roman Emperor. Tuscany remained the domain of this cadet branch of the family until Italian unification.

The duchy of Modena was assigned to a minor branch of the family by the Congress of Vienna. It was lost to Italian unification. The Dukes named their line the House of Austria-Este, as they were descended from the daughter of the last D'Este Duke of Modena.

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 favor.

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.

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 Campanas, Querétaro, in 1867 by the republican forces of Benito Juárez.

Charles I was expelled from his domains after World War I and the empire was abolished.[43]

This gallery only features portraits believed to be based on likeness. It does not include possibly imaginary depictions, such as those of early Habsburg rulers created by Anton Boys for Archduke Ferdinand II in the late 16th century. It also does not display family members who failed to reach adult age or did not play any historically significant role, including most of those born in the late 19th and 20th century in line with the erosion of the Habsburg family's historical significance after World War I.

Individuals are listed by chronological order of birth. The title of Archduke/Archduchess belonged by birthright to all Austrian Habsburgs, and is generally omitted unless the individual used no other title.

King Rudolf I (1218-1291)

Duke Rudolf IV (1339-1365)

King Albert II (1397-1439)

Emperor Frederick III (1415-1493)

Sigismund, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1427-1496)

King Ladislaus the Posthumous (1440-1457)

Emperor Maximilian I (1459-1519)

Kunigunde of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1465-1520)

Philip the Handsome, King of Castile (1478-1506)

Margaret of Austria, Duchess of Savoy (1480-1530)

Eleanor of Austria, Queen of Portugal then of France (1498-1558)

Emperor Charles V (1500-1558)

Isabella of Austria, Queen of Denmark, Norway and Sweden (1501-1526)

Emperor Ferdinand I (1503-1564)

Mary of Hungary, Governor of the Netherlands (1505-1558)

George of Austria, Prince-Bishop of Liège (1505-1557)

Margaret of Parma (1522-1586)

Elizabeth of Austria, Queen of Poland (1526–1545)

King Philip II (1527-1598)

Emperor Maximilian II (1527-1576)

Maria of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1528-1603)

Anna of Austria, Duchess of Bavaria (1528-1590)

Ferdinand II, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1529-1595)

Maria of Austria, Duchess of Jülich-Cleves-Berg (1531-1581)

Magdalena of Austria, abbess of Hall in Tirol (1532-1590)

Catherine of Austria, Queen of Poland (1533-1572)

Eleanor of Austria, Duchess of Mantua (1534-1594)

Joanna of Austria, Princess of Portugal (1535-1573)

Barbara of Austria, Duchess of Ferrara (1539-1572)

Charles II, ruler of Inner Austria (1540-1590)

Carlos, Prince of Asturias (1545-1568)

Joanna of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1547-1578)

John of Austria (1547-1578)

Anna of Austria, Queen of Spain (1549-1580)

Emperor Rudolf II (1552-1612)

Ernest of Austria, ruler of Inner Austria, governor of the Spanish Netherlands (1553-1595)

Elisabeth of Austria, Queen of France (1554-1592)

Emperor Matthias (1557-1619)

Cardinal Andrew of Austria (1558-1600)

Maximilian III, ruler of Further Austria (1558-1618)

Albert (VII), ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1559-1621)

Charles of Austria, Margrave of Burgau (1560-1618)

Isabella Clara Eugenia, ruler of the Spanish Netherlands (1566-1633)

Margaret of Austria, poor Clare (1567–1633)

Catalina Micaela of Spain, Duchess of Savoy (1567-1597)

Anne of Austria, Queen of Poland (1573-1598)

Maria Christina, Princess of Transylvania (1574-1621)

King Philip III (1578-1621)

Emperor Ferdinand II (1578-1637)

Eleanor of Austria, nun in Hall in Tirol (1582–1620)

Maximilian Ernest of Austria, Coadjutor of the Teutonic Order (1583-1616)

Maria of Austria, nun in Innsbrück (1584–1649)

Margaret of Austria, Queen of Spain (1584-1611)

Anna of Tyrol, Holy Roman Empress (1585-1618)

Leopold V, ruler of Tirol and Further Austria (1586-1632)

Constance of Austria, Queen of Poland (1588-1631)

Maria Maddalena of Austria, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (1589-1631)

Charles of Austria, Bishop of Breslau (1590-1624)

Anne of Austria, Queen of France (1601-1666)

King Philip IV (1605-1665)

Maria Anna of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1606-1646)

Infante Carlos of Spain (1607–1632)

Emperor Ferdinand III (1608-1657)

Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand of Austria (1609 or 1610-1641)

Maria Anna, Electress of Bavaria (1610-1665)

Cecilia Renata of Austria, Queen of Poland (1611-1644)

Leopold Wilhelm of Austria (1614-1662)

Ferdinand Charles, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1628-1662)

John Joseph of Austria (1629-1679)

Isabella Clara of Austria, Duchess of Mantua, Montferrat, Nevers, Mayenne and Rethel (1629-1685)

Sigismund Francis, ruler of Further Austria including Tirol (1630-1665)

Maria Leopoldine of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1632-1649)

Ferdinand IV, King of the Romans (1633-1654)

Mariana of Austria, Queen of Spain (1634-1696)

Maria Theresa, Queen of France (1638-1683)

Emperor Leopold I (1640-1705)

Margaret Theresa of Spain, Holy Roman Empress (1651-1673)

Eleonore of Austria, Queen of Poland (1653-1697)

Claudia Felicitas of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1653-1676)

Maria Anna Josepha of Austria, Electress of the Palatinate (1654-1689)

King Charles II (1661-1700)

Maria Antonia of Austria, Electress of Bavaria (1669-1692)

Emperor Joseph I (1678-1711)

Maria Elisabeth of Austria, governor of the Austrian Netherlands (1680-1741)

Maria Anna of Austria, Queen of Portugal (1683-1754)

Emperor Charles VI (1685-1740)

Maria Magdalena of Austria (1689–1743)

Maria Josepha of Austria, Queen of Poland (1699-1757)

Maria Amalia, Holy Roman Empress (1701-1756)

Maria Theresa of Austria, Holy Roman Empress (1717-1780)

Cognatic:

The House of Habsburg (/ˈhæpsbɜːrɡ/; German: Haus Habsburg [ˈhaːpsbʊʁk] (About this soundlisten); Spanish: Casa de Habsburgo [aβzˈβuɾɣo]; Hungarian: Habsburg-család), also known as the House of Austria (German: Haus Österreich; Spanish: Casa de Austria),[3] is a German dynasty[4] who once was one of the most prominent royal houses of Europe in the 2nd millennium.

The house takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built in the 1020s in present-day Switzerland by Radbot of Klettgau, who named his fortress Habsburg. His grandson Otto II was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "Count of Habsburg" to his title. In 1273, Count Radbot's seventh-generation descendant Rudolph of Habsburg was elected King of the Romans. Taking advantage of the extinction of the Babenbergs and of his victory over Ottokar II of Bohemia at the battle on the Marchfeld in 1278, he subsequently moved the family's power base to Vienna, where the Habsburgs ruled until 1918.

The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs from 1440 until their extinction in the male line in 1740 and, after the death of Francis I, from 1765 until its dissolution in 1806. The house also produced kings of Bohemia, Hungary, Croatia, Spain, Portugal and Galicia-Lodomeria, with their respective colonies; rulers of several principalities in the Low Countries and Italy; and in the 19th century, emperors of Austria and of Austria-Hungary as well as one emperor of Mexico. The family split several times into parallel branches, most consequentially in the mid-16th century between its Spanish and Austrian branches following the abdication of Charles V. Although they ruled distinct territories, the different branches nevertheless maintained close relations and frequently intermarried.

The house of Habsburg still exists and owns the Austrian region of the Order of the Golden Fleece and the Imperial and Royal Order of Saint George. The current head of the family is Karl von Habsburg.

The origins of Habsburg Castle's name 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.[5][6][7]

The Habsburg name was not continuously used by the family members, since they often emphasized their more prestigious princely titles. The dynasty was thus long known as the "house of Austria". Complementarily, in some circumstances the family members were identified by their place of birth. Charles V was known in his youth after his birthplace as Charles of Ghent. When he became king of Spain he was known as Charles of Spain, and after he was elected emperor, as Charles V (in French, Charles Quint).

In Spain, the dynasty was known as the Casa de Austria, including illegitimate sons such as John of Austria and John Joseph of Austria. The arms displayed in their simplest form were those of Austria, which the Habsburgs had made their own, at times impaled with the arms of the Duchy of Burgundy (ancient).

After Maria Theresa married Duke Francis Stephen of Lorraine, the idea of "Habsburg" as associated with ancestral Austrian rulership was used to show that the old dynasty continued as did all its inherited rights. When Francis I became Emperor of Austria, he adopted the old shield of Habsburg in his personal arms, together with Austria and Lorraine. This also reinforced the "Germanness" of the (French-speaking) Austrian Emperor and his claim to rule in Germany, not least against the Prussian Kings. Some younger sons who had no prospects of the throne were given the personal title of "count of Habsburg".

The surname of more recent members of the family such as Otto von Habsburg and Karl von Habsburg is taken to be "von Habsburg" or more completely "von Habsburg-Lothringen". Princes and members of the house use the tripartite arms adopted in the 18th century by Francis Stephen.

Timeline

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 forthwith farther back as the medieval Adalrich, Duke of Alsace, from the Etichonids from which Habsburg derives. His grandson Radbot of Klettgau founded the Habsburg Castle. That castle was the family seat during most of the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.

In the 12th century, the Habsburgs became increasingly associated with the Staufer Emperors, participating in the imperial court and the Emperor's military expeditions; Werner II, Count of Habsburg died fighting for Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa in Italy. This association helped them to inherit many domains as the Staufers caused the extinction of many dynasties, some of which the Habsburgs were heirs to. In 1198, Rudolf II, Count of Habsburg fully dedicated the dynasty to the Staufer cause by joining the Ghibellines and funded the Staufer emperor Frederick II's war for the throne in 1211. The emperor was made godfather to his newly born grandson, the future king Rudolf.[8][9]

The Habsburgs expanded their influence through arranged marriages and incestuous relations with family royalty 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.[10][11]

By the second half of the 13th century, count Rudolph IV (1218–1291) had become an influential territorial lord in the area between the Vosges Mountains and Lake Constance. On 1 October 1273, he was elected as a compromise candidate as King of the Romans and received the name Rudolph I of Germany.[10] He then led a coalition against king Ottokar II of Bohemia who had taken advantage of the Great Interregnum in order to expand southwards, taking over the respective inheritances of the Babenberg (Austria, Styria, Savinja) and of the Spanheim (Carinthia and Carniola). In 1278, Rudolph and his allies defeated and killed Ottokar at the Battle of Marchfeld, and the lands he had acquired reverted to the German crown. With the Georgenberg Pact of 1286, Rudolph secured for his family the duchies of Austria and Styria. The southern portions of Ottokar's former realm, Carinthia, Carniola, and Savinja, went to Rudolph's allies from the House of Gorizia.[12][13]

Following Rudolph's death in 1291, Albert I's assassination in 1308, and Frederick the Fair's failure to secure the German/Imperial crown for himself, the Habsburgs temporarily lost their supremacy in the Empire. In the early 14th century, they also focused on the Kingdom of Bohemia. After Václav III’s death on 4 August 1306, there were no male heirs remaining in the Přemyslid dynasty. Habsburg scion Rudolph I was then elected but only lasted a year. The Bohemian kingship was an elected position,[14] and the Habsburgs were only able to secure it on a hereditary basis much later in 1626, following their submission of the Czech lands during the Thirty Years' War. After 1307, subsequent Habsburg attempts to gain the Bohemian crown were frustrated first by Henry of Bohemia (a member of the House of Gorizia) and then by the House of Luxembourg.

Instead, they were able to expand southwards: in 1311, they took over Savinja; after the death of Henry in 1335, they assumed power in Carniola and Carinthia; and in 1369, they succeeded his daughter Margaret in Tyrol. After the death of Albert III of Gorizia in 1374, they gained a foothold at Pazin in central Istria, followed by Trieste in 1382. Meanwhile, the original home territories of the Habsburgs in what is now Switzerland, including the Aargau with Habsburg Castle, were lost in the 14th century to the expanding Swiss Confederacy after the battles of Morgarten (1315) and Sempach (1386). Habsburg Castle itself was finally lost to the Swiss in 1415.

Rudolf IV's brothers Albert III and Leopold III ignored his efforts to preserve the integrity of the family domains, and enacted the separation of the so-called Albertinian and Leopoldian family lines on 25 September 1379 by the Treaty of Neuberg. The former would maintain Austria proper (then called Niederösterreich but comprising modern Lower Austria and most of Upper Austria), while the latter would rule over lands then labeled Oberösterreich, namely Inner Austria (Innerösterreich) comprising Styria, Carinthia and Carniola, and Further Austria (Vorderösterreich) consisting of Tyrol and the western Habsburg lands in Alsace and Swabia.[10]

By marrying Elisabeth of Luxembourg, the daughter of Emperor Sigismund in 1437, Duke Albert V of the Albertine line (1397–1439) became the ruler of Bohemia and Hungary, again expanding the family's political horizons. The next year, Albert was crowned as King of the Romans, known as such as Albert II. Following his early death in a battle against the Ottomans in 1439 and that of his son Ladislaus Postumus in 1457, the Habsburgs lost Bohemia once more as well as Hungary, for several decades. However, with the extinction of the House of Celje in 1456 and the House of Wallsee-Enns in 1466/1483, they managed to absorb significant secular enclaves within their territories, and create a contiguous domain stretching from the border with Bohemia to the Adriatic sea.

After the death of Leopold's eldest son William in 1406, the Leopoldian line was further split among his brothers into the Inner Austrian territory under Ernest the Iron and a Tyrolean/Further Austrian line under Frederick of the empty pockets. In 1440, Ernest's son Frederick III was chosen by the electoral college to succeed Albert II as the king. Several Habsburg kings had attempted to gain the imperial dignity 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.[10]

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 until 1806.[10]

Through the forged document called privilegium maius (1358/59), Duke Rudolf IV (1339–1365) introduced the title of Archduke to place the Habsburgs on a par with the Prince-electors of the Empire, since Emperor Charles IV had omitted to give them the electoral dignity in his Golden Bull of 1356. Charles, however, refused to recognize the title, as did his immediate successors.

Duke Ernest the Iron and his descendants unilaterally assumed the title "archduke". That title was only officially recognized in 1453 by Emperor Frederick III, himself a Habsburg.[15] Frederick 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 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, apparently only started to use the title after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy in 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. 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.

In 1457 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 favor of Frederick's son Maximilian I.

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. Frederick's aim was to make Austria a united country, stretching from the Rhine to the Mur and Leitha.[10]

On the external front, one of Frederick's main achievements was the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), in which he coerced Charles the Bold of Burgundy to give his daughter Mary of Burgundy as wife to Frederick's son Maximilian.[10] 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 favor of Philip in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493.[16]

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. Emperor Charles V would be the last to be crowned by the Pope himself, at Bologna in 1530.[16]

Maximilian's rule (1493–1519) was a time of dramatic expansion for the Habsburgs. In 1497, Maximilian's son Philip, known as the Handsome or the Fair, married Joanna of Castile, also known as Joan the Mad, heiress of the Castile. Phillip and Joan had six children, the eldest of whom became Emperor Charles V and ruled the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon (including their colonies in the New World), Southern Italy, Austria, and the Low Countries.[17]

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 Louis's sister Anna. The wedding was celebrated in grand style on 22 July 1515. All these 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 the latter's designs were ultimately successful: upon Louis's death in battle in 1526, Ferdinand became king of Bohemia and Hungary.

The Habsburg dynasty achieved its highest position when Charles V was elected Holy Roman Emperor. Much of Charles's reign was dedicated to the fight against Protestantism, which led to its eradication throughout vast areas under Habsburg control.

After the abdication of Charles V in 1556, the Habsburg dynasty split into the branch of the Austrian (or German) Habsburgs, led by Ferdinand, and the branch of the Spanish Habsburgs, initially led by Charles's son Philip.[18] Ferdinand I, King of Bohemia, Hungary,[19] and archduke of Austria in the name of his brother Charles V became suo jure monarch as well as the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperor (designated as successor already in 1531). Philip became King of Spain and its colonial empire as Philip II, and ruler of the Habsburg domains in Italy and the Low Countries. The Spanish Habsburgs also ruled Portugal for a time, known there as the Philippine dynasty (1580–1640).

The Seventeen Provinces and the Duchy of Milan were in personal union under the King of Spain, but remained part of the Holy Roman Empire. Furthermore, the Spanish king had claims on Hungary and Bohemia. In the secret Oñate treaty of 29 July 1617, the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs settled their mutual claims.

The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by frequent consanguineous marriages, resulting in a cumulatively deleterious effect on their gene pool. Health impairments due to inbreeding included epilepsy, insanity and early death. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests inbreeding may have played a factor in their extinction.[20] Numerous members of the family showed specific facial deformities: an enlarged lower jaw with an extended chin known as mandibular prognathism or "Habsburg jaw", a large nose with hump and hanging tip ("Habsburg nose"), and an everted lower lip ("Habsburg lip"). The latter two are signs of maxillary deficiency. A 2019 study found that the degree of mandibular prognasthism in the Habsburg family shows a statistically significant correlation with the degree of inbreeding. A correlation between maxillary deficiency and degree of inbreeding was also present but was not statistically significant.[21][22] Other scientific studies, however, dispute the ideas of any linkage between fertility and consanguinity.[23]

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".[24][20]

The death of Charles II of Spain in 1700 led to the War of the Spanish Succession, and that of Emperor Charles VI in 1740 led to the War of the Austrian Succession. In the former, the House of Bourbon won the conflict and put a final end to the Habsburg rule in Spain. The latter, however, was won by Maria Theresa and led to the succession of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Haus Habsburg-Lothringen) becoming the new main branch of the dynasty, in the person of Maria Theresa's son, Joseph II. This new House was created by the marriage between Maria Theresa of Habsburg and Francis Stephan, Duke of Lorraine[25] (both of them were great-grandchildren of Habsburg emperor Ferdinand III, but from different empresses) being this new House a cadet branch of the female line of the House of Habsburg and the male line of the House of Lorraine. It is thought that extensive intra-family marriages within Spanish and Austrian lines contributed to the extinction of the main line.

On 6 August 1806, Emperor Francis I dissolved the Holy Roman Empire under pressure from Napoleon's reorganization of Germany. In anticipation of the loss of his title of Holy Roman Emperor, Francis had 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.[27] Under this arrangement, the Hungarians referred to their ruler as king and never emperor (see k. u. k.). 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 of Austria (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 that 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, on 31 May 1961 renounced all claims to the throne.

In the interwar period, the House of Habsburg was a vehement opponent of National Socialism and Communism. In Germany, Adolf Hitler diametrically opposed the centuries-old Habsburg principles of largely allowing local communities under their rule to maintain traditional ethnic, religious and language practices, and he bristled with hatred against the Habsburg family. During the Second World War there was a strong Habsburg resistance movement in Central Europe, which was radically persecuted by the Nazis and the Gestapo. The unofficial leader of these groups was Otto von Habsburg, who campaigned against the Nazis and for a free Central Europe in France and the United States. Most of the resistance fighters, such as Heinrich Maier, who successfully passed on production sites and plans for V-2 rockets, Tiger tanks and aircraft to the Allies, were executed. The Habsburg family played a leading role in the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Communist Eastern Bloc.[28][29][30][31][32]

As they accumulated crowns and titles, the Habsburgs developed a unique family tradition of multilingualism that evolved over the centuries. The Holy Roman Empire had been multilingual from the start, even though most of its emperors were native German-speakers.[33] The language issue within the Empire became gradually more salient as the non-religious use of Latin declined and that of national languages gained prominence during the High Middle Ages. Emperor Charles IV of Luxembourg was known to be fluent in Czech, French, German, Italian and Latin.[34]

The last section of his Golden Bull of 1356 specifies that the Empire's secular prince-electors "should be instructed in the varieties of the different dialects and languages" and that "since they are expected in all likelihood to have naturally acquired the German language, and to have been taught it from their infancy, [they] shall be instructed in the grammar of the Italian and Slavic tongues, beginning with the seventh year of their age so that, before the fourteenth year of their age, they may be learned in the same".[35] In the early 15th century, Strasbourg-based chronicler Jakob Twinger von Königshofen asserted that Charlemagne had mastered six languages, even though he had a preference for German.[33]: 306 

In the early years of the family's ascendancy, neither Rudolf I nor Albert I appear to have spoken French.[33]: 278  By contrast, Charles V of Habsburg is well known some having been fluent in several languages. He was native in French and also knew Dutch from his youth in Flanders. He later added some Castilian Spanish, which he was required to learn by the Castilian Cortes Generales. He could also speak some Basque, acquired by the influence of the Basque secretaries serving in the royal court.[36] He gained a decent command of German following the Imperial election of 1519, though he never spoke it as well as French.[37] A witticism sometimes attributed to Charles was: "I speak Spanish/Latin [depending on the source] to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse."[38]

Latin was the administrative language of the Empire until the aggressive promotion of German by Joseph II in the late 18th century, which was partly reversed by his successors. From the 16th century, most if not all Habsburgs spoke French as well as German, and many also spoke Italian.[citation needed] Ferdinand I, Maximilian II and Rudolf II addressed the Bohemian Assembly in Czech, even though it is not clear that they were fluent. By contrast, there is little evidence that later Habsburgs in the 17th and 18th centuries spoke Czech, with the probable exception of Ferdinand III who made several stays in Bohemia and appears to have spoken Czech while there. In the 19th century, Francis I had notions of Czech, and Ferdinand I spoke it decently.[39]

Franz Joseph received a bilingual early education in French and German, then added Czech and Hungarian and later Italian and Polish. He also learned Latin and Greek.[40] After the end of the Habsburg Monarchy, Otto von Habsburg was fluent in English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese.[41]

The Habsburgs' monarchical positions included:

Before Rudolph rose to German king, the Habsburgs were Counts of Baden in what is today southwestern Germany and Switzerland.[44]

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 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.

The abdications of Charles V in 1556 ended his formal authority over Ferdinand and made him suo jure ruler in Austria, Bohemia, Hungary, as well as Holy Roman Emperor.

Ferdinand's inheritance had been split in 1564 among his children, with Maximilian taking the Imperial crown and his younger brother Archduke Charles II ruling over 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). Charles's son and successor 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.

Habsburg Spain was a personal union between the Crowns of Castile and Aragon; Aragon was itself divided into the Kingdoms of Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Majorca, Naples, Sicily, Malta and Sardinia.[48] From 1581, they were kings of Portugal until they renounced this title in the 1668 Treaty of Lisbon. They were also Dukes of Milan, Lord of the Americas, and holder of multiple titles from territories within the Habsburg Netherlands. A full listing can be seen here.

The War of the Spanish Succession took place after the extinction of the Spanish Habsburg line, to determine the inheritance of Charles II.

Charles the Bold controlled not only Burgundy (both dukedom and county) but also Flanders and the broader Burgundian Netherlands. Frederick III managed to secure the marriage of Charles's only daughter, Mary of Burgundy, to his son Maximilian. The wedding took place on the evening of 16 August 1477, after the death of Charles.[49] 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.

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 War of the Austrian Succession took place after the extinction of the male line of the Austrian Habsburg line upon the death of Charles VI. The direct Habsburg line itself became totally extinct with the death of Maria Theresa of Austria, when it was followed by the House of Lorraine, styled of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Queen Maria Christina of Austria of Spain, great-granddaughter of Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor above. Wife of Alfonso XII of Spain and mother of Alfonso XIII of the House of Bourbon. Alfonso XIII's wife Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg was descended from King George I of Great Britain from the Habsburg Leopold Line {above}.

The House of Habsburg-Lorraine retained Austria and attached possessions after the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire; see below.

A son of Leopold II was Archduke Rainer of Austria whose wife was from the House of Savoy; a daughter Adelaide, Queen of Sardina was the wife of King Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy, and Sardinia and King of Italy. Their Children married into the Royal Houses of Bonaparte; Saxe-Coburg and Gotha {Bragança} {Portugal}; Savoy {Spain}; and the Dukedoms of Montferrat and Chablis.

(→Family Tree)

Francis Stephen assigned the grand duchy of Tuscany to his second son Peter Leopold, who in turn assigned it to his second son upon his accession as Holy Roman Emperor. Tuscany remained the domain of this cadet branch of the family until Italian unification.

The duchy of Modena was assigned to a minor branch of the family by the Congress of Vienna. It was lost to Italian unification. The Dukes named their line the House of Austria-Este, as they were descended from the daughter of the last D'Este Duke of Modena.

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 favor.

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.

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 Campanas, Querétaro, in 1867 by the republican forces of Benito Juárez.

Charles I was expelled from his domains after World War I and the empire was abolished.[44]

After partitions:

Cognatic:

The House of Habsburg (/ˈhæpsbɜːrɡ/; German: Haus Habsburg [ˈhaːpsbʊʁk] (About this soundlisten); Spanish: Casa de Habsburgo [aβzˈβuɾɣo]; Hungarian: Habsburg-család), also known as the House of Austria (German: Haus Österreich; Spanish: Casa de Austria),[3] is a German dynasty[4] who once was one of the most prominent royal houses of Europe in the 2nd millennium.

The house takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built in the 1020s in present-day Switzerland by Radbot of Klettgau, who named his fortress Habsburg. His grandson Otto II was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "Count of Habsburg" to his title. In 1273, Count Radbot's seventh-generation descendant Rudolph of Habsburg was elected King of the Romans. Taking advantage of the extinction of the Babenbergs and of his victory over Ottokar II of Bohemia at the battle on the Marchfeld in 1278, he subsequently moved the family's power base to Vienna, where the Habsburgs ruled until 1918.

The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs from 1440 until their extinction in the male line in 1740 and, after the death of Francis I, from 1765 until its dissolution in 1806. The house also produced kings of Bohemia, Hungary, Croatia, Spain, Portugal and Galicia-Lodomeria, with their respective colonies; rulers of several principalities in the Low Countries and Italy; and in the 19th century, emperors of Austria and of Austria-Hungary as well as one emperor of Mexico. The family split several times into parallel branches, most consequentially in the mid-16th century between its Spanish and Austrian branches following the abdication of Charles V. Although they ruled distinct territories, the different branches nevertheless maintained close relations and frequently intermarried.

The house of Habsburg still exists and owns the Austrian region of the Order of the Golden Fleece and the Imperial and Royal Order of Saint George. The current head of the family is Karl von Habsburg.

The origins of Habsburg Castle's name 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.[5][6][7]

The Habsburg name was not continuously used by the family members, since they often emphasized their more prestigious princely titles. The dynasty was thus long known as the "house of Austria". Complementarily, in some circumstances the family members were identified by their place of birth. Charles V was known in his youth after his birthplace as Charles of Ghent. When he became king of Spain he was known as Charles of Spain, and after he was elected emperor, as Charles V (in French, Charles Quint).

In Spain, the dynasty was known as the Casa de Austria, including illegitimate sons such as John of Austria and John Joseph of Austria. The arms displayed in their simplest form were those of Austria, which the Habsburgs had made their own, at times impaled with the arms of the Duchy of Burgundy (ancient).

After Maria Theresa married Duke Francis Stephen of Lorraine, the idea of "Habsburg" as associated with ancestral Austrian rulership was used to show that the old dynasty continued as did all its inherited rights. When Francis I became Emperor of Austria, he adopted the old shield of Habsburg in his personal arms, together with Austria and Lorraine. This also reinforced the "Germanness" of the (French-speaking) Austrian Emperor and his claim to rule in Germany, not least against the Prussian Kings. Some younger sons who had no prospects of the throne were given the personal title of "count of Habsburg".

The surname of more recent members of the family such as Otto von Habsburg and Karl von Habsburg is taken to be "von Habsburg" or more completely "von Habsburg-Lothringen". Princes and members of the house use the tripartite arms adopted in the 18th century by Francis Stephen.

Timeline

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 forthwith farther back as the medieval Adalrich, Duke of Alsace, from the Etichonids from which Habsburg derives. His grandson Radbot of Klettgau founded the Habsburg Castle. That castle was the family seat during most of the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.

In the 12th century, the Habsburgs became increasingly associated with the Staufer Emperors, participating in the imperial court and the Emperor's military expeditions; Werner II, Count of Habsburg died fighting for Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa in Italy. This association helped them to inherit many domains as the Staufers caused the extinction of many dynasties, some of which the Habsburgs were heirs to. In 1198, Rudolf II, Count of Habsburg fully dedicated the dynasty to the Staufer cause by joining the Ghibellines and funded the Staufer emperor Frederick II's war for the throne in 1211. The emperor was made godfather to his newly born grandson, the future king Rudolf.[8][9]

The Habsburgs expanded their influence through arranged marriages and incestuous relations with family royalty 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.[10][11]

By the second half of the 13th century, count Rudolph IV (1218–1291) had become an influential territorial lord in the area between the Vosges Mountains and Lake Constance. On 1 October 1273, he was elected as a compromise candidate as King of the Romans and received the name Rudolph I of Germany.[10] He then led a coalition against king Ottokar II of Bohemia who had taken advantage of the Great Interregnum in order to expand southwards, taking over the respective inheritances of the Babenberg (Austria, Styria, Savinja) and of the Spanheim (Carinthia and Carniola). In 1278, Rudolph and his allies defeated and killed Ottokar at the Battle of Marchfeld, and the lands he had acquired reverted to the German crown. With the Georgenberg Pact of 1286, Rudolph secured for his family the duchies of Austria and Styria. The southern portions of Ottokar's former realm, Carinthia, Carniola, and Savinja, went to Rudolph's allies from the House of Gorizia.[12][13]

Following Rudolph's death in 1291, Albert I's assassination in 1308, and Frederick the Fair's failure to secure the German/Imperial crown for himself, the Habsburgs temporarily lost their supremacy in the Empire. In the early 14th century, they also focused on the Kingdom of Bohemia. After Václav III’s death on 4 August 1306, there were no male heirs remaining in the Přemyslid dynasty. Habsburg scion Rudolph I was then elected but only lasted a year. The Bohemian kingship was an elected position,[14] and the Habsburgs were only able to secure it on a hereditary basis much later in 1626, following their submission of the Czech lands during the Thirty Years' War. After 1307, subsequent Habsburg attempts to gain the Bohemian crown were frustrated first by Henry of Bohemia (a member of the House of Gorizia) and then by the House of Luxembourg.

Instead, they were able to expand southwards: in 1311, they took over Savinja; after the death of Henry in 1335, they assumed power in Carniola and Carinthia; and in 1369, they succeeded his daughter Margaret in Tyrol. After the death of Albert III of Gorizia in 1374, they gained a foothold at Pazin in central Istria, followed by Trieste in 1382. Meanwhile, the original home territories of the Habsburgs in what is now Switzerland, including the Aargau with Habsburg Castle, were lost in the 14th century to the expanding Swiss Confederacy after the battles of Morgarten (1315) and Sempach (1386). Habsburg Castle itself was finally lost to the Swiss in 1415.

Rudolf IV's brothers Albert III and Leopold III ignored his efforts to preserve the integrity of the family domains, and enacted the separation of the so-called Albertinian and Leopoldian family lines on 25 September 1379 by the Treaty of Neuberg. The former would maintain Austria proper (then called Niederösterreich but comprising modern Lower Austria and most of Upper Austria), while the latter would rule over lands then labeled Oberösterreich, namely Inner Austria (Innerösterreich) comprising Styria, Carinthia and Carniola, and Further Austria (Vorderösterreich) consisting of Tyrol and the western Habsburg lands in Alsace and Swabia.[10]

By marrying Elisabeth of Luxembourg, the daughter of Emperor Sigismund in 1437, Duke Albert V of the Albertine line (1397–1439) became the ruler of Bohemia and Hungary, again expanding the family's political horizons. The next year, Albert was crowned as King of the Romans, known as such as Albert II. Following his early death in a battle against the Ottomans in 1439 and that of his son Ladislaus Postumus in 1457, the Habsburgs lost Bohemia once more as well as Hungary, for several decades. However, with the extinction of the House of Celje in 1456 and the House of Wallsee-Enns in 1466/1483, they managed to absorb significant secular enclaves within their territories, and create a contiguous domain stretching from the border with Bohemia to the Adriatic sea.

After the death of Leopold's eldest son William in 1406, the Leopoldian line was further split among his brothers into the Inner Austrian territory under Ernest the Iron and a Tyrolean/Further Austrian line under Frederick of the empty pockets. In 1440, Ernest's son Frederick III was chosen by the electoral college to succeed Albert II as the king. Several Habsburg kings had attempted to gain the imperial dignity 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.[10]

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 until 1806.[10]

Through the forged document called privilegium maius (1358/59), Duke Rudolf IV (1339–1365) introduced the title of Archduke to place the Habsburgs on a par with the Prince-electors of the Empire, since Emperor Charles IV had omitted to give them the electoral dignity in his Golden Bull of 1356. Charles, however, refused to recognize the title, as did his immediate successors.

Duke Ernest the Iron and his descendants unilaterally assumed the title "archduke". That title was only officially recognized in 1453 by Emperor Frederick III, himself a Habsburg.[15] Frederick 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 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, apparently only started to use the title after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy in 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. 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.

In 1457 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 favor of Frederick's son Maximilian I.

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. Frederick's aim was to make Austria a united country, stretching from the Rhine to the Mur and Leitha.[10]

On the external front, one of Frederick's main achievements was the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), in which he coerced Charles the Bold of Burgundy to give his daughter Mary of Burgundy as wife to Frederick's son Maximilian.[10] 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 favor of Philip in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493.[16]

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. Emperor Charles V would be the last to be crowned by the Pope himself, at Bologna in 1530.[16]

Maximilian's rule (1493–1519) was a time of dramatic expansion for the Habsburgs. In 1497, Maximilian's son Philip, known as the Handsome or the Fair, married Joanna of Castile, also known as Joan the Mad, heiress of the Castile. Phillip and Joan had six children, the eldest of whom became Emperor Charles V and ruled the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon (including their colonies in the New World), Southern Italy, Austria, and the Low Countries.[17]

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 Louis's sister Anna. The wedding was celebrated in grand style on 22 July 1515. All these 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 the latter's designs were ultimately successful: upon Louis's death in battle in 1526, Ferdinand became king of Bohemia and Hungary.

The Habsburg dynasty achieved its highest position when Charles V was elected Holy Roman Emperor. Much of Charles's reign was dedicated to the fight against Protestantism, which led to its eradication throughout vast areas under Habsburg control.

After the abdication of Charles V in 1556, the Habsburg dynasty split into the branch of the Austrian (or German) Habsburgs, led by Ferdinand, and the branch of the Spanish Habsburgs, initially led by Charles's son Philip.[18] Ferdinand I, King of Bohemia, Hungary,[19] and archduke of Austria in the name of his brother Charles V became suo jure monarch as well as the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperor (designated as successor already in 1531). Philip became King of Spain and its colonial empire as Philip II, and ruler of the Habsburg domains in Italy and the Low Countries. The Spanish Habsburgs also ruled Portugal for a time, known there as the Philippine dynasty (1580–1640).

The Seventeen Provinces and the Duchy of Milan were in personal union under the King of Spain, but remained part of the Holy Roman Empire. Furthermore, the Spanish king had claims on Hungary and Bohemia. In the secret Oñate treaty of 29 July 1617, the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs settled their mutual claims.

The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by frequent consanguineous marriages, resulting in a cumulatively deleterious effect on their gene pool. Health impairments due to inbreeding included epilepsy, insanity and early death. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests inbreeding may have played a factor in their extinction.[20] Numerous members of the family showed specific facial deformities: an enlarged lower jaw with an extended chin known as mandibular prognathism or "Habsburg jaw", a large nose with hump and hanging tip ("Habsburg nose"), and an everted lower lip ("Habsburg lip"). The latter two are signs of maxillary deficiency. A 2019 study found that the degree of mandibular prognasthism in the Habsburg family shows a statistically significant correlation with the degree of inbreeding. A correlation between maxillary deficiency and degree of inbreeding was also present but was not statistically significant.[21][22] Other scientific studies, however, dispute the ideas of any linkage between fertility and consanguinity.[23]

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".[24][20]

The death of Charles II of Spain in 1700 led to the War of the Spanish Succession, and that of Emperor Charles VI in 1740 led to the War of the Austrian Succession. In the former, the House of Bourbon won the conflict and put a final end to the Habsburg rule in Spain. The latter, however, was won by Maria Theresa and led to the succession of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Haus Habsburg-Lothringen) becoming the new main branch of the dynasty, in the person of Maria Theresa's son, Joseph II. This new House was created by the marriage between Maria Theresa of Habsburg and Francis Stephan, Duke of Lorraine[25] (both of them were great-grandchildren of Habsburg emperor Ferdinand III, but from different empresses) being this new House a cadet branch of the female line of the House of Habsburg and the male line of the House of Lorraine. It is thought that extensive intra-family marriages within Spanish and Austrian lines contributed to the extinction of the main line.

On 6 August 1806, Emperor Francis I dissolved the Holy Roman Empire under pressure from Napoleon's reorganization of Germany. In anticipation of the loss of his title of Holy Roman Emperor, Francis had 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.[27] Under this arrangement, the Hungarians referred to their ruler as king and never emperor (see k. u. k.). 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 of Austria (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 that 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, on 31 May 1961 renounced all claims to the throne.

In the interwar period, the House of Habsburg was a vehement opponent of National Socialism and Communism. In Germany, Adolf Hitler diametrically opposed the centuries-old Habsburg principles of largely allowing local communities under their rule to maintain traditional ethnic, religious and language practices, and he bristled with hatred against the Habsburg family. During the Second World War there was a strong Habsburg resistance movement in Central Europe, which was radically persecuted by the Nazis and the Gestapo. The unofficial leader of these groups was Otto von Habsburg, who campaigned against the Nazis and for a free Central Europe in France and the United States. Most of the resistance fighters, such as Heinrich Maier, who successfully passed on production sites and plans for V-2 rockets, Tiger tanks and aircraft to the Allies, were executed. The Habsburg family played a leading role in the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Communist Eastern Bloc.[28][29][30][31][32]

As they accumulated crowns and titles, the Habsburgs developed a unique family tradition of multilingualism that evolved over the centuries. The Holy Roman Empire had been multilingual from the start, even though most of its emperors were native German-speakers.[33] The language issue within the Empire became gradually more salient as the non-religious use of Latin declined and that of national languages gained prominence during the High Middle Ages. Emperor Charles IV of Luxembourg was known to be fluent in Czech, French, German, Italian and Latin.[34]

The last section of his Golden Bull of 1356 specifies that the Empire's secular prince-electors "should be instructed in the varieties of the different dialects and languages" and that "since they are expected in all likelihood to have naturally acquired the German language, and to have been taught it from their infancy, [they] shall be instructed in the grammar of the Italian and Slavic tongues, beginning with the seventh year of their age so that, before the fourteenth year of their age, they may be learned in the same".[35] In the early 15th century, Strasbourg-based chronicler Jakob Twinger von Königshofen asserted that Charlemagne had mastered six languages, even though he had a preference for German.[33]: 306 

In the early years of the family's ascendancy, neither Rudolf I nor Albert I appear to have spoken French.[33]: 278  By contrast, Charles V of Habsburg is well known some having been fluent in several languages. He was native in French and also knew Dutch from his youth in Flanders. He later added some Castilian Spanish, which he was required to learn by the Castilian Cortes Generales. He could also speak some Basque, acquired by the influence of the Basque secretaries serving in the royal court.[36] He gained a decent command of German following the Imperial election of 1519, though he never spoke it as well as French.[37] A witticism sometimes attributed to Charles was: "I speak Spanish/Latin [depending on the source] to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse."[38]

Latin was the administrative language of the Empire until the aggressive promotion of German by Joseph II in the late 18th century, which was partly reversed by his successors. From the 16th century, most if not all Habsburgs spoke French as well as German, and many also spoke Italian.[citation needed] Ferdinand I, Maximilian II and Rudolf II addressed the Bohemian Assembly in Czech, even though it is not clear that they were fluent. By contrast, there is little evidence that later Habsburgs in the 17th and 18th centuries spoke Czech, with the probable exception of Ferdinand III who made several stays in Bohemia and appears to have spoken Czech while there. In the 19th century, Francis I had notions of Czech, and Ferdinand I spoke it decently.[39]

Franz Joseph received a bilingual early education in French and German, then added Czech and Hungarian and later Italian and Polish. He also learned Latin and Greek.[40] After the end of the Habsburg Monarchy, Otto von Habsburg was fluent in English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese.[41]

The Habsburgs' monarchical positions included:

Before Rudolph rose to German king, the Habsburgs were Counts of Baden in what is today southwestern Germany and Switzerland.[44]

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 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.

The abdications of Charles V in 1556 ended his formal authority over Ferdinand and made him suo jure ruler in Austria, Bohemia, Hungary, as well as Holy Roman Emperor.

Ferdinand's inheritance had been split in 1564 among his children, with Maximilian taking the Imperial crown and his younger brother Archduke Charles II ruling over 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). Charles's son and successor 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.

Habsburg Spain was a personal union between the Crowns of Castile and Aragon; Aragon was itself divided into the Kingdoms of Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Majorca, Naples, Sicily, Malta and Sardinia.[48] From 1581, they were kings of Portugal until they renounced this title in the 1668 Treaty of Lisbon. They were also Dukes of Milan, Lord of the Americas, and holder of multiple titles from territories within the Habsburg Netherlands. A full listing can be seen here.

The War of the Spanish Succession took place after the extinction of the Spanish Habsburg line, to determine the inheritance of Charles II.

Charles the Bold controlled not only Burgundy (both dukedom and county) but also Flanders and the broader Burgundian Netherlands. Frederick III managed to secure the marriage of Charles's only daughter, Mary of Burgundy, to his son Maximilian. The wedding took place on the evening of 16 August 1477, after the death of Charles.[49] 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.

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 War of the Austrian Succession took place after the extinction of the male line of the Austrian Habsburg line upon the death of Charles VI. The direct Habsburg line itself became totally extinct with the death of Maria Theresa of Austria, when it was followed by the House of Lorraine, styled of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Queen Maria Christina of Austria of Spain, great-granddaughter of Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor above. Wife of Alfonso XII of Spain and mother of Alfonso XIII of the House of Bourbon. Alfonso XIII's wife Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg was descended from King George I of Great Britain from the Habsburg Leopold Line {above}.

The House of Habsburg-Lorraine retained Austria and attached possessions after the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire; see below.

A son of Leopold II was Archduke Rainer of Austria whose wife was from the House of Savoy; a daughter Adelaide, Queen of Sardina was the wife of King Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy, and Sardinia and King of Italy. Their Children married into the Royal Houses of Bonaparte; Saxe-Coburg and Gotha {Bragança} {Portugal}; Savoy {Spain}; and the Dukedoms of Montferrat and Chablis.

(→Family Tree)

Francis Stephen assigned the grand duchy of Tuscany to his second son Peter Leopold, who in turn assigned it to his second son upon his accession as Holy Roman Emperor. Tuscany remained the domain of this cadet branch of the family until Italian unification.

The duchy of Modena was assigned to a minor branch of the family by the Congress of Vienna. It was lost to Italian unification. The Dukes named their line the House of Austria-Este, as they were descended from the daughter of the last D'Este Duke of Modena.

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 favor.

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.

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 Campanas, Querétaro, in 1867 by the republican forces of Benito Juárez.

Charles I was expelled from his domains after World War I and the empire was abolished.[44]

After partitions:

Cognatic:

The House of Habsburg (/ˈhæpsbɜːrɡ/; German: Haus Habsburg [ˈhaːpsbʊʁk] (About this soundlisten); Spanish: Casa de Habsburgo [aβzˈβuɾɣo]; Hungarian: Habsburg-család), also known as the House of Austria (German: Haus Österreich; Spanish: Casa de Austria),[3] is a German dynasty[4] who once was one of the most prominent royal houses of Europe in the 2nd millennium.

The house takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built in the 1020s in present-day Switzerland by Radbot of Klettgau, who named his fortress Habsburg. His grandson Otto II was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "Count of Habsburg" to his title. In 1273, Count Radbot's seventh-generation descendant Rudolph of Habsburg was elected King of the Romans. Taking advantage of the extinction of the Babenbergs and of his victory over Ottokar II of Bohemia at the battle on the Marchfeld in 1278, he subsequently moved the family's power base to Vienna, where the Habsburgs ruled until 1918.

The throne of the Holy Roman Empire was continuously occupied by the Habsburgs from 1440 until their extinction in the male line in 1740 and, after the death of Francis I, from 1765 until its dissolution in 1806. The house also produced kings of Bohemia, Hungary, Croatia, Spain, Portugal and Galicia-Lodomeria, with their respective colonies; rulers of several principalities in the Low Countries and Italy; and in the 19th century, emperors of Austria and of Austria-Hungary as well as one emperor of Mexico. The family split several times into parallel branches, most consequentially in the mid-16th century between its Spanish and Austrian branches following the abdication of Charles V. Although they ruled distinct territories, the different branches nevertheless maintained close relations and frequently intermarried.

The house of Habsburg still exists and owns the Austrian region of the Order of the Golden Fleece and the Imperial and Royal Order of Saint George. The current head of the family is Karl von Habsburg.

The origins of Habsburg Castle's name 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.[5][6][7]

The Habsburg name was not continuously used by the family members, since they often emphasized their more prestigious princely titles. The dynasty was thus long known as the "house of Austria". Complementarily, in some circumstances the family members were identified by their place of birth. Charles V was known in his youth after his birthplace as Charles of Ghent. When he became king of Spain he was known as Charles of Spain, and after he was elected emperor, as Charles V (in French, Charles Quint).

In Spain, the dynasty was known as the Casa de Austria, including illegitimate sons such as John of Austria and John Joseph of Austria. The arms displayed in their simplest form were those of Austria, which the Habsburgs had made their own, at times impaled with the arms of the Duchy of Burgundy (ancient).

After Maria Theresa married Duke Francis Stephen of Lorraine, the idea of "Habsburg" as associated with ancestral Austrian rulership was used to show that the old dynasty continued as did all its inherited rights. When Francis I became Emperor of Austria, he adopted the old shield of Habsburg in his personal arms, together with Austria and Lorraine. This also reinforced the "Germanness" of the (French-speaking) Austrian Emperor and his claim to rule in Germany, not least against the Prussian Kings. Some younger sons who had no prospects of the throne were given the personal title of "count of Habsburg".

The surname of more recent members of the family such as Otto von Habsburg and Karl von Habsburg is taken to be "von Habsburg" or more completely "von Habsburg-Lothringen". Princes and members of the house use the tripartite arms adopted in the 18th century by Francis Stephen.

Timeline

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 forthwith farther back as the medieval Adalrich, Duke of Alsace, from the Etichonids from which Habsburg derives. His grandson Radbot of Klettgau founded the Habsburg Castle. That castle was the family seat during most of the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.

In the 12th century, the Habsburgs became increasingly associated with the Staufer Emperors, participating in the imperial court and the Emperor's military expeditions; Werner II, Count of Habsburg died fighting for Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa in Italy. This association helped them to inherit many domains as the Staufers caused the extinction of many dynasties, some of which the Habsburgs were heirs to. In 1198, Rudolf II, Count of Habsburg fully dedicated the dynasty to the Staufer cause by joining the Ghibellines and funded the Staufer emperor Frederick II's war for the throne in 1211. The emperor was made godfather to his newly born grandson, the future king Rudolf.[8][9]

The Habsburgs expanded their influence through arranged marriages and incestuous relations with family royalty 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.[10][11]

By the second half of the 13th century, count Rudolph IV (1218–1291) had become an influential territorial lord in the area between the Vosges Mountains and Lake Constance. On 1 October 1273, he was elected as a compromise candidate as King of the Romans and received the name Rudolph I of Germany.[10] He then led a coalition against king Ottokar II of Bohemia who had taken advantage of the Great Interregnum in order to expand southwards, taking over the respective inheritances of the Babenberg (Austria, Styria, Savinja) and of the Spanheim (Carinthia and Carniola). In 1278, Rudolph and his allies defeated and killed Ottokar at the Battle of Marchfeld, and the lands he had acquired reverted to the German crown. With the Georgenberg Pact of 1286, Rudolph secured for his family the duchies of Austria and Styria. The southern portions of Ottokar's former realm, Carinthia, Carniola, and Savinja, went to Rudolph's allies from the House of Gorizia.[12][13]

Following Rudolph's death in 1291, Albert I's assassination in 1308, and Frederick the Fair's failure to secure the German/Imperial crown for himself, the Habsburgs temporarily lost their supremacy in the Empire. In the early 14th century, they also focused on the Kingdom of Bohemia. After Václav III’s death on 4 August 1306, there were no male heirs remaining in the Přemyslid dynasty. Habsburg scion Rudolph I was then elected but only lasted a year. The Bohemian kingship was an elected position,[14] and the Habsburgs were only able to secure it on a hereditary basis much later in 1626, following their submission of the Czech lands during the Thirty Years' War. After 1307, subsequent Habsburg attempts to gain the Bohemian crown were frustrated first by Henry of Bohemia (a member of the House of Gorizia) and then by the House of Luxembourg.

Instead, they were able to expand southwards: in 1311, they took over Savinja; after the death of Henry in 1335, they assumed power in Carniola and Carinthia; and in 1369, they succeeded his daughter Margaret in Tyrol. After the death of Albert III of Gorizia in 1374, they gained a foothold at Pazin in central Istria, followed by Trieste in 1382. Meanwhile, the original home territories of the Habsburgs in what is now Switzerland, including the Aargau with Habsburg Castle, were lost in the 14th century to the expanding Swiss Confederacy after the battles of Morgarten (1315) and Sempach (1386). Habsburg Castle itself was finally lost to the Swiss in 1415.

Rudolf IV's brothers Albert III and Leopold III ignored his efforts to preserve the integrity of the family domains, and enacted the separation of the so-called Albertinian and Leopoldian family lines on 25 September 1379 by the Treaty of Neuberg. The former would maintain Austria proper (then called Niederösterreich but comprising modern Lower Austria and most of Upper Austria), while the latter would rule over lands then labeled Oberösterreich, namely Inner Austria (Innerösterreich) comprising Styria, Carinthia and Carniola, and Further Austria (Vorderösterreich) consisting of Tyrol and the western Habsburg lands in Alsace and Swabia.[10]

By marrying Elisabeth of Luxembourg, the daughter of Emperor Sigismund in 1437, Duke Albert V of the Albertine line (1397–1439) became the ruler of Bohemia and Hungary, again expanding the family's political horizons. The next year, Albert was crowned as King of the Romans, known as such as Albert II. Following his early death in a battle against the Ottomans in 1439 and that of his son Ladislaus Postumus in 1457, the Habsburgs lost Bohemia once more as well as Hungary, for several decades. However, with the extinction of the House of Celje in 1456 and the House of Wallsee-Enns in 1466/1483, they managed to absorb significant secular enclaves within their territories, and create a contiguous domain stretching from the border with Bohemia to the Adriatic sea.

After the death of Leopold's eldest son William in 1406, the Leopoldian line was further split among his brothers into the Inner Austrian territory under Ernest the Iron and a Tyrolean/Further Austrian line under Frederick of the Empty Pockets. In 1440, Ernest's son Frederick III was chosen by the electoral college to succeed Albert II as the king. Several Habsburg kings had attempted to gain the imperial dignity 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.[10]

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 until 1806.[10]

Through the forged document called privilegium maius (1358/59), Duke Rudolf IV (1339–1365) introduced the title of Archduke to place the Habsburgs on a par with the Prince-electors of the Empire, since Emperor Charles IV had omitted to give them the electoral dignity in his Golden Bull of 1356. Charles, however, refused to recognize the title, as did his immediate successors.

Duke Ernest the Iron and his descendants unilaterally assumed the title "archduke". That title was only officially recognized in 1453 by Emperor Frederick III, himself a Habsburg.[15] Frederick 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 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, apparently only started to use the title after the death of his wife Mary of Burgundy in 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. 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.

In 1457 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 favor of Frederick's son Maximilian I.

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. Frederick's aim was to make Austria a united country, stretching from the Rhine to the Mur and Leitha.[10]

On the external front, one of Frederick's main achievements was the Siege of Neuss (1474–75), in which he coerced Charles the Bold of Burgundy to give his daughter Mary of Burgundy as wife to Frederick's son Maximilian.[10] 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 favor of Philip in the Treaty of Senlis in 1493.[16]

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. Emperor Charles V would be the last to be crowned by the Pope himself, at Bologna in 1530.[16]

Maximilian's rule (1493–1519) was a time of dramatic expansion for the Habsburgs. In 1497, Maximilian's son Philip, known as the Handsome or the Fair, married Joanna of Castile, also known as Joan the Mad, heiress of the Castile. Phillip and Joan had six children, the eldest of whom became Emperor Charles V and ruled the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon (including their colonies in the New World), Southern Italy, Austria, and the Low Countries.[17]

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 Louis's sister Anna. The wedding was celebrated in grand style on 22 July 1515. All these 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 the latter's designs were ultimately successful: upon Louis's death in battle in 1526, Ferdinand became king of Bohemia and Hungary.

The Habsburg dynasty achieved its highest position when Charles V was elected Holy Roman Emperor. Much of Charles's reign was dedicated to the fight against Protestantism, which led to its eradication throughout vast areas under Habsburg control.

After the abdication of Charles V in 1556, the Habsburg dynasty split into the branch of the Austrian (or German) Habsburgs, led by Ferdinand, and the branch of the Spanish Habsburgs, initially led by Charles's son Philip.[18] Ferdinand I, King of Bohemia, Hungary,[19] and archduke of Austria in the name of his brother Charles V became suo jure monarch as well as the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperor (designated as successor already in 1531). Philip became King of Spain and its colonial empire as Philip II, and ruler of the Habsburg domains in Italy and the Low Countries. The Spanish Habsburgs also ruled Portugal for a time, known there as the Philippine dynasty (1580–1640).

The Seventeen Provinces and the Duchy of Milan were in personal union under the King of Spain, but remained part of the Holy Roman Empire. Furthermore, the Spanish king had claims on Hungary and Bohemia. In the secret Oñate treaty of 29 July 1617, the Spanish and Austrian Habsburgs settled their mutual claims.

The Habsburgs sought to consolidate their power by frequent consanguineous marriages, resulting in a cumulatively deleterious effect on their gene pool. Health impairments due to inbreeding included epilepsy, insanity and early death. A study of 3,000 family members over 16 generations by the University of Santiago de Compostela suggests inbreeding may have played a factor in their extinction.[20] Numerous members of the family showed specific facial deformities: an enlarged lower jaw with an extended chin known as mandibular prognathism or "Habsburg jaw", a large nose with hump and hanging tip ("Habsburg nose"), and an everted lower lip ("Habsburg lip"). The latter two are signs of maxillary deficiency. A 2019 study found that the degree of mandibular prognasthism in the Habsburg family shows a statistically significant correlation with the degree of inbreeding. A correlation between maxillary deficiency and degree of inbreeding was also present but was not statistically significant.[21][22] Other scientific studies, however, dispute the ideas of any linkage between fertility and consanguinity.[23]

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".[24][20]

The death of Charles II of Spain in 1700 led to the War of the Spanish Succession, and that of Emperor Charles VI in 1740 led to the War of the Austrian Succession. In the former, the House of Bourbon won the conflict and put a final end to the Habsburg rule in Spain. The latter, however, was won by Maria Theresa and led to the succession of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Haus Habsburg-Lothringen) becoming the new main branch of the dynasty, in the person of Maria Theresa's son, Joseph II. This new House was created by the marriage between Maria Theresa of Habsburg and Francis Stephan, Duke of Lorraine[25] (both of them were great-grandchildren of Habsburg emperor Ferdinand III, but from different empresses) being this new House a cadet branch of the female line of the House of Habsburg and the male line of the House of Lorraine. It is thought that extensive intra-family marriages within Spanish and Austrian lines contributed to the extinction of the main line.

On 6 August 1806, Emperor Francis I dissolved the Holy Roman Empire under pressure from Napoleon's reorganization of Germany. In anticipation of the loss of his title of Holy Roman Emperor, Francis had 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.[27] Under this arrangement, the Hungarians referred to their ruler as king and never emperor (see k. u. k.). 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 of Austria (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 that 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, on 31 May 1961 renounced all claims to the throne.

In the interwar period, the House of Habsburg was a vehement opponent of National Socialism and Communism. In Germany, Adolf Hitler diametrically opposed the centuries-old Habsburg principles of largely allowing local communities under their rule to maintain traditional ethnic, religious and language practices, and he bristled with hatred against the Habsburg family. During the Second World War there was a strong Habsburg resistance movement in Central Europe, which was radically persecuted by the Nazis and the Gestapo. The unofficial leader of these groups was Otto von Habsburg, who campaigned against the Nazis and for a free Central Europe in France and the United States. Most of the resistance fighters, such as Heinrich Maier, who successfully passed on production sites and plans for V-2 rockets, Tiger tanks and aircraft to the Allies, were executed. The Habsburg family played a leading role in the fall of the Iron Curtain and the collapse of the Communist Eastern Bloc.[28][29][30][31][32]

As they accumulated crowns and titles, the Habsburgs developed a unique family tradition of multilingualism that evolved over the centuries. The Holy Roman Empire had been multilingual from the start, even though most of its emperors were native German speakers.[33] The language issue within the Empire became gradually more salient as the non-religious use of Latin declined and that of national languages gained prominence during the High Middle Ages. Emperor Charles IV of Luxembourg was known to be fluent in Czech, French, German, Italian and Latin.[34]

The last section of his Golden Bull of 1356 specifies that the Empire's secular prince-electors "should be instructed in the varieties of the different dialects and languages" and that "since they are expected in all likelihood to have naturally acquired the German language, and to have been taught it from their infancy, [they] shall be instructed in the grammar of the Italian and Slavic tongues, beginning with the seventh year of their age so that, before the fourteenth year of their age, they may be learned in the same".[35] In the early 15th century, Strasbourg-based chronicler Jakob Twinger von Königshofen asserted that Charlemagne had mastered six languages, even though he had a preference for German.[33]: 306 

In the early years of the family's ascendancy, neither Rudolf I nor Albert I appear to have spoken French.[33]: 278  By contrast, Charles V of Habsburg is well known some having been fluent in several languages. He was native in French and also knew Dutch from his youth in Flanders. He later added some Castilian Spanish, which he was required to learn by the Castilian Cortes Generales. He could also speak some Basque, acquired by the influence of the Basque secretaries serving in the royal court.[36] He gained a decent command of German following the Imperial election of 1519, though he never spoke it as well as French.[37] A witticism sometimes attributed to Charles was: "I speak Spanish/Latin [depending on the source] to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse."[38]

Latin was the administrative language of the Empire until the aggressive promotion of German by Joseph II in the late 18th century, which was partly reversed by his successors. From the 16th century, most if not all Habsburgs spoke French as well as German, and many also spoke Italian.[citation needed] Ferdinand I, Maximilian II and Rudolf II addressed the Bohemian Assembly in Czech, even though it is not clear that they were fluent. By contrast, there is little evidence that later Habsburgs in the 17th and 18th centuries spoke Czech, with the probable exception of Ferdinand III who made several stays in Bohemia and appears to have spoken Czech while there. In the 19th century, Francis I had notions of Czech, and Ferdinand I spoke it decently.[39]

Franz Joseph received a bilingual early education in French and German, then added Czech and Hungarian and later Italian and Polish. He also learned Latin and Greek.[40] After the end of the Habsburg Monarchy, Otto von Habsburg was fluent in English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese.[41]

The Habsburgs' monarchical positions included:

Before Rudolph rose to German king, the Habsburgs were Counts of Baden in what is today southwestern Germany and Switzerland.[44]

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 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.

The abdications of Charles V in 1556 ended his formal authority over Ferdinand and made him suo jure ruler in Austria, Bohemia, Hungary, as well as Holy Roman Emperor.

Ferdinand's inheritance had been split in 1564 among his children, with Maximilian taking the Imperial crown and his younger brother Archduke Charles II ruling over 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). Charles's son and successor 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.

Habsburg Spain was a personal union between the Crowns of Castile and Aragon; Aragon was itself divided into the Kingdoms of Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Majorca, Naples, Sicily, Malta and Sardinia.[48] From 1581, they were kings of Portugal until they renounced this title in the 1668 Treaty of Lisbon. They were also Dukes of Milan, Lord of the Americas, and holder of multiple titles from territories within the Habsburg Netherlands. A full listing can be seen here.

The War of the Spanish Succession took place after the extinction of the Spanish Habsburg line, to determine the inheritance of Charles II.

Charles the Bold controlled not only Burgundy (both dukedom and county) but also Flanders and the broader Burgundian Netherlands. Frederick III managed to secure the marriage of Charles's only daughter, Mary of Burgundy, to his son Maximilian. The wedding took place on the evening of 16 August 1477, after the death of Charles.[49] 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.

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 War of the Austrian Succession took place after the extinction of the male line of the Austrian Habsburg line upon the death of Charles VI. The direct Habsburg line itself became totally extinct with the death of Maria Theresa of Austria, when it was followed by the House of Lorraine, styled of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Queen Maria Christina of Austria of Spain, great-granddaughter of Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor above. Wife of Alfonso XII of Spain and mother of Alfonso XIII of the House of Bourbon. Alfonso XIII's wife Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg was descended from King George I of Great Britain from the Habsburg Leopold Line {above}.

The House of Habsburg-Lorraine retained Austria and attached possessions after the dissolution of the Holy Roman Empire; see below.

A son of Leopold II was Archduke Rainer of Austria whose wife was from the House of Savoy; a daughter Adelaide, Queen of Sardina was the wife of King Victor Emmanuel II of Piedmont, Savoy, and Sardinia and King of Italy. Their Children married into the Royal Houses of Bonaparte; Saxe-Coburg and Gotha {Bragança} {Portugal}; Savoy {Spain}; and the Dukedoms of Montferrat and Chablis.

(→Family Tree)

Francis Stephen assigned the grand duchy of Tuscany to his second son Peter Leopold, who in turn assigned it to his second son upon his accession as Holy Roman Emperor. Tuscany remained the domain of this cadet branch of the family until Italian unification.

The duchy of Modena was assigned to a minor branch of the family by the Congress of Vienna. It was lost to Italian unification. The Dukes named their line the House of Austria-Este, as they were descended from the daughter of the last D'Este Duke of Modena.

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 favor.

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.

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 Campanas, Querétaro, in 1867 by the republican forces of Benito Juárez.

Charles I was expelled from his domains after World War I and the empire was abolished.[44]

After partitions:

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