Archduke Franz-Ferdinand: Public Life

Figure 1.--Here we see Franz Ferdinand and the family (the second boy is obscured being the Archduke) on some kind of public outing. We do not know just wgere they were. The Princess Hohenberg is greeting a local resident. Notice the boy has a box camera. The photograph is undated, but five the age of the children, it must be 1913 or even early-1914. The caption reads, "Erzherzog Thronfolger Franz Ferdinand von Österreich mit Familie." That means Archduke Successor to the Throne Franz Ferdinand of Austria with Family, in other words: Crown Prince and family.

The Countess Sophia after marrying ArchdukecFranz Ferdinand was given the title Princess Hohenberg, but Franz Ferdinand had to renounce rights of rank and succession for their children. In the years to come, Sophie was the recipient of many slights at court. Public life as a result could be very un comfortable. Court protocol was perhaps the most formal in Europe. There were strict rules for virtually everything. She was not allowed, for example, to ride in the same car/coach with her husband during affairs of state. When appearing with the royal family, she would be placed in the background, separated from her husband. One especially galling practice was the way that individuals may their ebtrace for state events. The Emperor would come first and the Archduke France Ferdinand soon after. Sophie wouuld have to wit, however, until a large number of higher ranking women entered until she could join her husband. Gradually the Emperor relented somewhat. The Emperor elevated Sophie to the rank of Duchess (1905). This brought the privlige of being addressed as "Serene Highness". Hecraised here title again--Duchess, Highness ad Personum (1909). This brought the privlidge of being addressed as "Highness". Even so, the couple with their children retreated into their family life or events where they were not subjected to petty slights from the Imperial court. Of course as the heir apparent, there were many events which required their presence or wghere there absence would have been awkward. And they made appearances away from court where there wwould be no awkward etiquitte and rank complications. One such event would be the tragic state visit to Bosnia.


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Created: 4:47 AM 5/19/2011
4:47 AM 5/19/20111:40 AM 5/19/2011