Maria Theresa Archduchess Of Austria Holy Roman Empress

Maria Theresa Archduchess Of Austria, Holy Roman Empress

Maria Theresa Archduchess Of Austria, Holy Roman Empress was the sovereign of Austria, Hungary, Croatia, Bohemia, Mantua, Milan, Lodomeria and Galicia, the Austrian Netherlands, and Parma. By marriage, she was Grand Duchess of Tuscany, Duchess of Lorraine, German Queen and Holy Roman Empress.

Maria Theresa Archduchess Of Austria, Holy Roman Empress was born May 13 1717 Vienna, died Nov 29 1780 Vienna

Archduchess of Austria and Queen of Hungary and Bohemia 1740 – 80

Wife and empress of the Holy Roman Emperor Francis II 1745 – 65 and mother of Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II 1765 – 90

There was a challenge to her ascension to the throne that resulted in the War of Austrian Succession 1740 – 48

Also the Prussians and Bavarians fought with Maria Theresa seeing an opportunity to expand their own lands and further checked Austrian power

A statue of Maria Theresa holding the Pragmatic Sanction in Vienna
A statue of Maria Theresa holding the Pragmatic Sanction in Vienna

Maria Theresa Archduchess Of Austria, Holy Roman Empress - Early Life

She was the oldest daughter of Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI and Elizabeth of Brunswick-Wolfenbuttel

After the oldest son died the so called pragmatic sanction was finally recognized by most powers, it meant that a woman could rise to the Habsburg throne

1736 she married Francis Stephen of Lorraine


Maria Theresa Archduchess Of Austria, Holy Roman Empress - War of Austrian Succession

Oct 20 1740 Charles VI died leaving the Habsburg state at its lowest point of its prestige, nearly broke and beset by unrest

Maria Theresa Archduchess Of Austria, Holy Roman Empress courageously took up her position and refused to negotiate with Fredrick II of Prussia who invaded the richest Austrian province Silesia, she rallied the Hungarian estates and got troops to help her cause and this gave her a reputation in Europe for diplomatic skill

Maria Theresa Archduchess Of Austria, Holy Roman Empress - Domestic Reforms

Influenced by the plans of Count Fredrich Wilhelm Haugwitz she decided the need to increase the professional army and reduce the powers of the estates who held the purse strings to the monarchy’s money too tightly

She also abolished tax exemptions on wealthy land owners

Maria Theresa Archduchess Of Austria, Holy Roman Empress also made social reforms such as introducing text books for schools and universities, and made primary school compulsory

Most of all the biggest change to the Empire under her reign was move toward subordinating the Catholic Church to the authority of the state, even though she was deeply pious, strictly observant, and intolerant to the point of bigotry

Maria Theresa Archduchess Of Austria, Holy Roman Empress - Foreign Relations

She modernised the army and in an effort to regain Silesia and defeat the Prussians. In a famous reversal of alliances she broke off with England, the banker of the Habsburgs, and allied Austria with their old foe France

After the defeat in the 7 years war the fate of Silesia was definitely Prussian and all Austria was left with was a mountain of debt, so she then became a champion of peace

1779 she avoided war with the Prussians risked by her hot headed son Joseph who took over duties as vice regent when his father died

Though Francis had never been a faithful husband, Maria Theresa never wavered in her love for him and his sudden death in 1765 plunged her into prolonged grief

A coin from 1780 with the bust of Maria Theresa on it.
A coin from 1780 with the bust of Maria Theresa on it.

Maria Theresa Archduchess Of Austria, Holy Roman Empress - Late Years

Although Maria Theresa pedantically supervised her 17 children's upbringing and education she was to experience many disappointments in connection with them

Only Leopold of Tuscany lived up to her expectations

One of her biggest disappointments was Marie Antoinette of France who she kept bombarding with practical advice and dire warnings of the future

She grew very ‘stout’ and in poor health in her later years and spent more and more time at the palace in Schonbrunn, whose reconstruction is owed to her

Maria Theresa Archduchess Of Austria, Holy Roman Empress died in Nov 1780 leaving behind the Habsburg Empire for her son Joseph II

Maria Theresa was a major political figure of the 18th century; she added a degree of unity to the Habsburg lands, was one of the most capable rulers of her house and according to one historian was the most human of the Habsburgs.

My name is Robee Kann, for four years I was a tour guide throughout Europe. I loved my job and I would love to hear from you. You are most welcome to message me to say hello or request a hub about a European subject. Please look at my other hubs and leave a comment for me.

Maria Theresa and Schonbrunn Palace

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Comments On Maria Theresa Archduchess Of Austria, Holy Roman Empress 1 comment

Robison 4 years ago

you got a lot of this info from another website. you should create a bibliography.

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