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Marengo 04-05-2008 06:50 AM

Empress Maria Theresia (1717-1780) and Emperor Franz I (1708-1765)
Maria Theresia Walburga Amaliae Christina Holy Roman Empress (consort), Queen of Hungary, Bohemia, Croatia and Slavonia, Archduchess of Austria, Duchess of Parma and Piacenza, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (Vienna, 13 May 1717 - Vienna 29 Nove0ber 1780) married in Vienna on 12 February 1736 Franz Stephan, Duke of Lorraine (Lunéville, 8 December 1708 - Innsbruck, 18 Augustus 1765). In 1745 he became the Holy Roman Emperor Franz I and Grand Duke of Tuscany.

Dynasty: Habsburg(-Lorraine)

Reign: 1745 - 1780

Predecessor Maria Theresia: Holy Roman Emperor Karl VI, Archduke of Austria

Predecessor Franz: Holy Roman Emperor Karl VII, Elector of Bavaria

Successor: Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II

Children: Archduchess Maria Elisabeth; Archduchess Maria Anna and Archduchess Maria Karolina of Austria; Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II; Princess Maria Christina of Saxony, Duchess of Teschen; Archduchess Maria Elisabeth and Archduke Karl Joseph of Austria; Duchess Maria Amalia of Parma; Holy Roman Emperor Leopold II, Archduke of Austria, King of Hungary and King of Bohemia; Archduchess Maria Karoline; Archduchess Maria Johanna and Archduchess Maria Josepha of Austria; Queen Maria Karoline of Napels and Sicily; Archduke Ferdinand of Austria-Este, Duke of Breisgau; Queen Maria Antonia (Marie-Antoinette) of France and Navarre and Archduke Maximilian Franz, Archbishop-Elector of Cologne

Parents Maria Theresia: Holy Roman Emperor Karl VI and Duchess Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel

Parents Franz: Duke Leopold Joseph of Lorraine and Princess Élisabeth Charlotte d'Orléans (France)

Sister Maria Theresia: Archduke Leopold Johann of Austria; Duchess Maria Anna of Lorraine and Archduchess Maria Amalia of Austria

Siblings Franz: Duke Leopold, Duchess Elisabeth Charlotte; Duchess Louise Christine; Duchess Marie Gabriele; Duke Louise; Duchess Josepha Gabriele; Duchess Gabriele Louise; Duke Leopold Clement and Duchess Eleonore of Lorraine; Queen Elisabeth Therese of Sardinia; Duke Charles Alexander of Lorraine, governor of the Austrian Netherlands and Duchess Anne Charlotte of Lorraine, abess in Essen

Marengo 04-05-2008 07:10 AM

Maria Theresa (German: Maria Theresia, see also other languages; May 13, 1717 – November 29, 1780) was a reigning Archduchess of Austria, a Queen of Hungary, Croatia and Bohemia, and a Holy Roman Empress.
Maria Theresa was the oldest daughter of Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel and Emperor Charles VI, who promulgated the Pragmatic Sanction to allow her to succeed to the Habsburg monarchy. Opposition to her acceding to the throne led to the War of the Austrian Succession in 1740. After Emperor Charles VII, who claimed the throne, died in 1745, Maria Theresa obtained the imperial crown for her husband, Francis I. Though she was technically empress consort, Maria Theresa was the de facto ruler of the nation, and she began styling herself Holy Roman Empress in 1745. Maria Theresa had in fact already begun her rule in 1740 during the Austrian War of Succession.
Maria Theresa helped initiate financial and educational reforms, promoted commerce and the development of agriculture, and reorganized the army, all of which strengthened Austria's resources. Continued conflict with the Kingdom of Prussia led to the Seven Years' War and later to the War of the Bavarian Succession. She became dowager empress after the death of Francis and ascession of her son Joseph as emperor in 1765. Maria Theresa criticized many of Joseph's actions but agreed to the First Partition of Poland (1772). A key figure in the power politics of 18th century Europe, Maria Theresa brought unity to the Habsburg Monarchy and was considered one of its most capable rulers. Her 16 children also included Marie Antoinette, queen consort of France, and Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor.

Maria Theresa Walburga Amaliae Christina was born in Vienna, the eldest daughter of Charles VI, Holy Roman Emperor and Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel, whose sole male heir - his son Leopold Johann - died as an infant in 1716. In 1713 Charles issued the Pragmatic Sanction which guaranteed his daughter the right to succeed to the Austrian throne and inherit his united lands on his death. Initially, many Northern European monarchs agreed to the Pragmatic Sanction when it was issued. One of the few not to sign was Frederick the Great of Prussia who, soon after Maria Theresa assumed the throne upon Charles' death on October 20, 1740, began the War of Austrian Succession.
Maria Theresa was married to Francis I, Holy Roman Emperor, Duke of Lorraine in 1736. He tended to leave day to day administration to Maria Theresa. Unlike many monarchs of her time, she married for love. She had 16 children by him. Their eleven daughters all had the first name "Maria". They also had five sons. The youngest daughter was Maria Antonia, better known under her French name, Marie Antoinette, who would be promised in marriage to the future King Louis XVI of France.
After her husband's death, Joseph II, succeeded in the elective monarchy of the Holy Roman Empire, maintaining the imperial Crown in the Habsburg line, in accordance with tradition. Maria Theresa then made Joseph II co-regent of her Austrian dominions, but she actually kept most of the power to herself, which led to tension between her and her son. It was not until her death that Joseph could fully exercise his powers.

Read the entire wikipedia article here.

Marengo 04-05-2008 07:11 AM

Francis I (8 December 1708 – 18 August 1765) (born as François Stephen, also known as Franz Stefan and Francis III Stephen, Duke of Lorraine) was Holy Roman Emperor and Grand Duke of Tuscany. With his wife, Maria Theresa, he was the founder of the Habsburg-Lorraine dynasty.

He was born in Nancy, Lorraine (now in France), the oldest surviving son of Leopold Joseph, duke of Lorraine, and his wife Elizabeth Charlotte, daughter of Philippe I, duc d'Orléans and Elizabeth Charlotte, Princess Palatine. He was connected with the Habsburgs through his grandmother Eleanore, daughter of Emperor Ferdinand III, and wife of Charles Leopold of Lorraine, his grandfather.
Emperor Charles VI favored the family, who, besides being his cousins, had served the house of Austria with distinction. He had designed to marry his daughter Maria Theresa to Francis' older brother Clement. On Clement's death, Charles adopted the younger brother as his future son-in-law. Francis was brought up in Vienna with Maria Theresa on the understanding that they were to be married, and a real affection arose between them.
At the age of 15, when he was brought to Vienna, he was established in the Silesian Duchy of Cieszyn, which had been mediatized and granted to his father by the emperor in 1722. He succeeded his father as Duke of Lorraine in 1729, but the emperor, at the end of the War of the Polish Succession, agreed to compensate the French candidate Stanislaus Leszczynski for the loss of his crown in 1735 and persuaded Francis to exchange Lorraine for the Grand Duchy of Tuscany.

Read the entire wikipedia article here.

Jo of Palatine 04-06-2008 04:46 AM


Originally Posted by Marengo (Post 749971)
Maria Theresia Walburga Amaliae Christina Holy Roman Empress (consort), Queen of Hungary, Bohemia, Croatia and Slavonia, Archduchess of Austria, Duchess of Parma and Piacenza, Grand Duchess of Tuscany (Vienna, 13 May 1717 - Vienna 29 Nove0ber 1780) married in Vienna on 12 February 1736 Franz Stephan, Duke of Lorraine (Lunéville, 8 December 1708 - Innsbruck, 18 Augustus 1765). In 1745 he became the Holy Roman Emperor Franz I and Grand Duke of Tuscany.

Dynasty: Habsburg(-Lorraine)

Reign: 1745 - 1780

Predecessor: Holy Roman Emperor Karl VI

Successor: Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II

Marengo, I don't think you can say it quite that way. Maria Theresia's predecessor as reigning Archduke of Austria, king of Hungary, Bohemia etc. was Karl VI., that is right, but her husband's predecessor as emperor of the Holy Roman Empire was Karl VII. (of Bavaria, son-in-law of Joseph I., Karl VI.'s brother). So IMHO you should edit this message making different entries for Maria-Theresia as souverain of Austria and the other Habsburg-lands and her husband Franz Stephan as Holy Roman Emperor.

This difficult situation (the emperor was not the souverain of the Habsburg-lands, his wife was) created a problem when Franz Stephan died because the other German princes did not want to accept Joseph II. as emperor as long as he was only his mother's heir. So she had to create him her co-regent as a kind of advanced inheriting.

CarolinaLandgrave 07-08-2009 06:04 PM

Does anyone have a good suggested reading for a biography of Maria Theresa? I find her quite interesting, but sadly enough, do not know about her to actually speak knowingly on her..

Thanks in advance!!!

monica17 07-08-2009 10:56 PM

I recommend the following books on Maria Theresa (written in English):

Maria Theresa, The Last Conservative by Constance Lily Morris
Maria Theresa of Austria by J. Alexander Mahan
Maria Theresa of Austria by Margaret Goldsmith
Maria Theresa by Paul Tabori (out of print but may be be found in online bookstores- I got a copy earlier this year and it's very informative, albeit some mix-up on the names by the author; it presents MT as a total person, with all her faults)

You can find three of the above at

I also recommend the book Joseph II: In The Shadow of Maria Theresa by Derek Beales-- MT is also featured qute extensively there. You can view it (albeit limitedly) at google book search.


monica17 07-09-2009 10:02 PM

You are welcome, CarolinaLandgrave!:flowers:

You may also be interested in a book that's due for release this December: In Destiny's Hands: Five Tragic Rulers, Children of Maria Theresa by Justin C. Vovk. Although it is about five of her children (Joseph, Maria Amalia, Leopold, Maria Carolina, and Marie Antoinette), she is very much there, of course.

IloveCP 06-11-2011 02:19 AM

Is it true that the Empress did not favor her daughter Marie Antionette?If it's true than why?It would seem that would emtionally make her feel bad about her self.

Warren 06-11-2011 04:24 AM

The relationship between mother and daughter is discussed in the Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette thread in the Royal Families of France subforum.

monica17 06-12-2011 09:04 PM


Originally Posted by IloveCP (Post 1265472)
Is it true that the Empress did not favor her daughter Marie Antionette?If it's true than why?It would seem that would emtionally make her feel bad about her self.

Maria Theresa showed favour to 2 of her children: Maria Christina and Karl Joseph (who died at age 15). As for the rest, she kept them on a tight leash and used various methods to keep them in line. She was not above using spies, blackmail, and threats (especially to those who moved away from Vienna after marrying). Although she loved her children, she was suspicious of them and was inconsistent with what she preached and what she had actually done. Of course, her advice wasn't always bad - some of them were very good - but as a whole, her children resented the control and the favouritism, although some of them kept up with appearances and showed outward respect.

Nicolas of Albania 10-04-2011 05:04 PM

I know Maria Theresa was the de facto ruler of all of her lands, but is she listed as being the Holy Roman Empress as a regnant? or is she only considered a consort?

Kit 10-04-2011 05:42 PM

the thing is in theory she was only a consort, in reality she was the one gave the note within the Empire ..... ;-)

MAfan 10-04-2011 05:47 PM

Maria Theresa was the sovereign of Austria, Hungary, Bohemia, etc, in her own right, while she was the Holy Roman Empress and Grand Duchess of Tuscany and Duchess of Lorraine as wife of Franz.

Kit 10-04-2011 05:57 PM

She was both !!! So to answer your question: as an Empress she was consort, although in reality it was her who reigned while as the Archduchess of Austria and Queen of Hungary, Bohemia, Croatia, etc. she was a ruler (including all the other territories that belonged to Austria at the time!!!! It is a tricky matter but you have to realize that the Holy Roman Empire consisted of several more or less independent dukedoms, kingdoms in case of Prussia, etc. and Austria as an archdukedom was a part of the Empire with Maria Theresia being the ruler of Austria and all the regions that belonged to Austria (for example the kingdoms of Hungary and Bohemia) . At the same time her husband was the Emperor of the whole Empire and so she was a Consort, too. In reality as I afore mentioned she was the one who gave the note within the whole Empire ... .

CyrilVladisla 08-21-2014 07:56 PM

In Emperors, Kings & Queens, Sonya Newland wrote:

Highly moral and occasionally obstinate, the Empress Maria Theresa was also kind-hearted with a genuine love for her people. She is remember as one of the most accomplished and effective rulers of the Habsburg dynasty.

CyrilVladisla 11-07-2014 10:40 PM expressed:
While his wife helped him (Francis I) to get the title Holy Roman emperor. she (Maria Theresa) ruled over most matters of government and war.

What matters of government did Francis I get involved with?

Ish 11-07-2014 10:49 PM

According to Wikipedia, he primarily functioned as a secretary.

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