Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria

Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria

Overview
Franz Ferdinand was an Archduke
Archduke
The title of Archduke denotes a noble rank above Duke and below King, used only by princes of the Houses of Habsburg and Habsburg-Lorraine....

 of Austria-Este
Austria-Este
Archduke of Austria-Este and Habsburg-Este are a title and a surname which have been used by several cadet branches of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine to denote a connection with the extinct Italian princely and feudal family of Este and the Duchy of Modena ruled by them...

, Austro-Hungarian and Royal Prince of Hungary
Hungary
Hungary , officially the Republic of Hungary , is a landlocked country in Central Europe. It is situated in the Carpathian Basin and is bordered by Slovakia to the north, Ukraine and Romania to the east, Serbia and Croatia to the south, Slovenia to the southwest and Austria to the west. The...

 and of Bohemia
Bohemia
Bohemia is a historical region in central Europe, occupying the western two-thirds of the traditional Czech Lands. It is located in the contemporary Czech Republic with its capital in Prague...

, and from 1889 until his death, heir presumptive
Heir Presumptive
An heir presumptive or heiress presumptive is the person provisionally scheduled to inherit a throne, peerage, or other hereditary honour, but whose position can be displaced by the birth of an heir or heiress apparent or of a new heir presumptive with a better claim to the position in question...

 to the Austro-Hungarian
Austria-Hungary
Austria-Hungary , more formally known as the Kingdoms and Lands Represented in the Imperial Council and the Lands of the Holy Hungarian Crown of Saint Stephen, was a constitutional monarchic union between the crowns of the Austrian Empire and the Kingdom of Hungary in...

 throne. His assassination in Sarajevo
Sarajevo
Sarajevo |Bosnia]], surrounded by the Dinaric Alps and situated along the Miljacka River in the heart of Southeastern Europe and the Balkans....

 precipitated Austria-Hungary's declaration of war
Declaration of war
A declaration of war is a formal act by which one nation goes to war against another. The declaration is a performative speech act by an authorized party of a national government in order to create a state of war between two or more states.The legality of who is competent to declare war varies...

 against Serbia
Serbia
Serbia , officially the Republic of Serbia , is a landlocked country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe, covering the southern part of the Carpathian basin and the central part of the Balkans...

. This caused the Central Powers
Central Powers
The Central Powers were one of the two warring factions in World War I , composed of the German Empire, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the Ottoman Empire, and the Kingdom of Bulgaria...

 (including Germany
German Empire
The German Empire refers to Germany during the "Second Reich" period from the unification of Germany and proclamation of Wilhelm I as German Emperor on 18 January 1871, to 1918, when it became a federal republic after defeat in World War I and the abdication of the Emperor, Wilhelm II.The German...

 and Austria-Hungary) and the Allies of World War I
Allies of World War I
The Entente Powers were the countries at war with the Central Powers during World War I. The members of the Triple Entente were the United Kingdom, France, and the Russian Empire; Italy entered the war on their side in 1915...

 (countries allied with Serbia) to declare war on each other, starting World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

.

He was born in Graz
Graz
The more recent population figures do not give the whole picture as only people with principal residence status are counted and people with secondary residence status are not. Most of the people with secondary residence status in Graz are students...

, Austria, the eldest son of Archduke Karl Ludwig of Austria
Archduke Karl Ludwig of Austria
Archduke Karl Ludwig Joseph Maria of Austria was the younger brother of Franz Joseph I of Austria and the father of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria , whose assassination ignited the start of World War I.-Biography:He was born at Schönbrunn in Vienna, the son of Archduke Franz Karl of Austria ...

 (younger brother of Franz Joseph
Franz Joseph I of Austria
Franz Joseph I or Francis Joseph I was Emperor of Austria, King of Bohemia, King of Croatia, Apostolic King of Hungary, King of Galicia and Lodomeria and Grand Duke of Cracow from 1848 until his death in 1916.In the December of 1848, Emperor Ferdinand I of Austria abdicated the throne as part of...

 and Maximilian
Maximilian I of Mexico
Maximilian I was the only monarch of the Second Mexican Empire.After a distinguished career in the Austrian Navy, he was proclaimed Emperor of Mexico on April 10, 1864, with the backing of Napoleon III of France and a group of Mexican monarchists who sought to revive the Mexican monarchy...

) and of his second wife, Princess Maria Annunciata of Bourbon-Two Sicilies.
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Quotations

"Sopherl! Sopherl! Sterbe nicht! Bleib am Leben für unsere Kinder!"

Translation: "Sophie! Sophie! Don't die! Stay alive for our children!"

"Es ist gar nichts... es ist gar nichts..."

Translation: "It's nothing... it's nothing..."

"If I don't go, His Majesty would go and I think we would all want to avoid that!"

The Archduke's reply to Prince Auersperg's private warning on the dangers of the trip to Sarajevo shortly before his departure
Encyclopedia
Franz Ferdinand was an Archduke
Archduke
The title of Archduke denotes a noble rank above Duke and below King, used only by princes of the Houses of Habsburg and Habsburg-Lorraine....

 of Austria-Este
Austria-Este
Archduke of Austria-Este and Habsburg-Este are a title and a surname which have been used by several cadet branches of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine to denote a connection with the extinct Italian princely and feudal family of Este and the Duchy of Modena ruled by them...

, Austro-Hungarian and Royal Prince of Hungary
Hungary
Hungary , officially the Republic of Hungary , is a landlocked country in Central Europe. It is situated in the Carpathian Basin and is bordered by Slovakia to the north, Ukraine and Romania to the east, Serbia and Croatia to the south, Slovenia to the southwest and Austria to the west. The...

 and of Bohemia
Bohemia
Bohemia is a historical region in central Europe, occupying the western two-thirds of the traditional Czech Lands. It is located in the contemporary Czech Republic with its capital in Prague...

, and from 1889 until his death, heir presumptive
Heir Presumptive
An heir presumptive or heiress presumptive is the person provisionally scheduled to inherit a throne, peerage, or other hereditary honour, but whose position can be displaced by the birth of an heir or heiress apparent or of a new heir presumptive with a better claim to the position in question...

 to the Austro-Hungarian
Austria-Hungary
Austria-Hungary , more formally known as the Kingdoms and Lands Represented in the Imperial Council and the Lands of the Holy Hungarian Crown of Saint Stephen, was a constitutional monarchic union between the crowns of the Austrian Empire and the Kingdom of Hungary in...

 throne. His assassination in Sarajevo
Sarajevo
Sarajevo |Bosnia]], surrounded by the Dinaric Alps and situated along the Miljacka River in the heart of Southeastern Europe and the Balkans....

 precipitated Austria-Hungary's declaration of war
Declaration of war
A declaration of war is a formal act by which one nation goes to war against another. The declaration is a performative speech act by an authorized party of a national government in order to create a state of war between two or more states.The legality of who is competent to declare war varies...

 against Serbia
Serbia
Serbia , officially the Republic of Serbia , is a landlocked country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe, covering the southern part of the Carpathian basin and the central part of the Balkans...

. This caused the Central Powers
Central Powers
The Central Powers were one of the two warring factions in World War I , composed of the German Empire, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the Ottoman Empire, and the Kingdom of Bulgaria...

 (including Germany
German Empire
The German Empire refers to Germany during the "Second Reich" period from the unification of Germany and proclamation of Wilhelm I as German Emperor on 18 January 1871, to 1918, when it became a federal republic after defeat in World War I and the abdication of the Emperor, Wilhelm II.The German...

 and Austria-Hungary) and the Allies of World War I
Allies of World War I
The Entente Powers were the countries at war with the Central Powers during World War I. The members of the Triple Entente were the United Kingdom, France, and the Russian Empire; Italy entered the war on their side in 1915...

 (countries allied with Serbia) to declare war on each other, starting World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

.

He was born in Graz
Graz
The more recent population figures do not give the whole picture as only people with principal residence status are counted and people with secondary residence status are not. Most of the people with secondary residence status in Graz are students...

, Austria, the eldest son of Archduke Karl Ludwig of Austria
Archduke Karl Ludwig of Austria
Archduke Karl Ludwig Joseph Maria of Austria was the younger brother of Franz Joseph I of Austria and the father of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria , whose assassination ignited the start of World War I.-Biography:He was born at Schönbrunn in Vienna, the son of Archduke Franz Karl of Austria ...

 (younger brother of Franz Joseph
Franz Joseph I of Austria
Franz Joseph I or Francis Joseph I was Emperor of Austria, King of Bohemia, King of Croatia, Apostolic King of Hungary, King of Galicia and Lodomeria and Grand Duke of Cracow from 1848 until his death in 1916.In the December of 1848, Emperor Ferdinand I of Austria abdicated the throne as part of...

 and Maximilian
Maximilian I of Mexico
Maximilian I was the only monarch of the Second Mexican Empire.After a distinguished career in the Austrian Navy, he was proclaimed Emperor of Mexico on April 10, 1864, with the backing of Napoleon III of France and a group of Mexican monarchists who sought to revive the Mexican monarchy...

) and of his second wife, Princess Maria Annunciata of Bourbon-Two Sicilies. When he was only twelve years old, his cousin Duke Francis V of Modena died, naming Franz Ferdinand his heir on condition that he add the name Este to his own. Franz Ferdinand thus became one of the wealthiest men in Austria.

Heir presumptive


In 1889, Franz Ferdinand's life changed dramatically. His cousin Crown Prince Rudolf
Crown Prince Rudolf of Austria
Rudolf , archduke of Austria and crown prince of Austria, Hungary and Bohemia, was the son and heir of Franz Joseph I, emperor of Austria, Hungary and Bohemia, and his wife and empress, Elisabeth...

 committed suicide
Suicide
Suicide is the act of intentionally causing one's own death. Suicide is often committed out of despair or attributed to some underlying mental disorder, such as depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, alcoholism, or drug abuse...

 at his hunting lodge in Mayerling, leaving Franz Ferdinand's father, Archduke Karl Ludwig, as first in line to the throne. However, his father died of typhoid fever after the Crown Prince's death. Henceforth, Franz Ferdinand was groomed to succeed. Despite this burden, he did manage to find time for travel and personal pursuits - for example, the time he spent hunting kangaroo
Kangaroo
A kangaroo is a marsupial from the family Macropodidae . In common use the term is used to describe the largest species from this family, especially those of the genus Macropus, Red Kangaroo, Antilopine Kangaroo, Eastern Grey Kangaroo and Western Grey Kangaroo. Kangaroos are endemic to the country...

s and emu
Emu
The Emu Dromaius novaehollandiae) is the largest bird native to Australia and the only extant member of the genus Dromaius. It is the second-largest extant bird in the world by height, after its ratite relative, the ostrich. There are three subspecies of Emus in Australia...

s in Australia in 1893, and the return trip to Austria sailing across the Pacific on the RMS Empress of China
RMS Empress of China (1891)
RMS Empress of China was an ocean liner built in 1890-1891 by Naval Construction & Armament Co., Barrow, England for Canadian Pacific Steamships...

 from Yokohama
Yokohama
is the capital city of Kanagawa Prefecture and the second largest city in Japan by population after Tokyo and most populous municipality of Japan. It lies on Tokyo Bay, south of Tokyo, in the Kantō region of the main island of Honshu...

 to Vancouver
Vancouver
Vancouver is a coastal seaport city on the mainland of British Columbia, Canada. It is the hub of Greater Vancouver, which, with over 2.3 million residents, is the third most populous metropolitan area in the country,...

.

Military career


Franz Ferdinand, like most males in the ruling Habsburg
Habsburg Monarchy
The Habsburg Monarchy covered the territories ruled by the junior Austrian branch of the House of Habsburg , and then by the successor House of Habsburg-Lorraine , between 1526 and 1867/1918. The Imperial capital was Vienna, except from 1583 to 1611, when it was moved to Prague...

 line, entered the army
Austro-Hungarian Army
The Austro-Hungarian Army was the ground force of the Austro-Hungarian Dual Monarchy from 1867 to 1918. It was composed of three parts: the joint army , the Austrian Landwehr , and the Hungarian Honvédség .In the wake of fighting between the...

 from a young age. He was frequently and rapidly promoted, given the rank of lieutenant
Lieutenant
A lieutenant is a junior commissioned officer in many nations' armed forces. Typically, the rank of lieutenant in naval usage, while still a junior officer rank, is senior to the army rank...

 at age fourteen, captain at twenty-two, colonel
Colonel
Colonel , abbreviated Col or COL, is a military rank of a senior commissioned officer. It or a corresponding rank exists in most armies and in many air forces; the naval equivalent rank is generally "Captain". It is also used in some police forces and other paramilitary rank structures...

 at twenty-seven, and major general
Major General
Major general or major-general is a military rank used in many countries. It is derived from the older rank of sergeant major general. A major general is a high-ranking officer, normally subordinate to the rank of lieutenant general and senior to the ranks of brigadier and brigadier general...

 at thirty-one. While never receiving formal staff training, he was considered eligible for command and at one point briefly led the primarily Hungarian 9th Hussar
Hussar
Hussar refers to a number of types of light cavalry which originated in Hungary in the 14th century, tracing its roots from Serbian medieval cavalry tradition, brought to Hungary in the course of the Serb migrations, which began in the late 14th century....

 Regiment. In 1898 he was given a commission "at the special disposition of His Majesty" to make inquiries into all aspects of the military services and military agencies were commanded to share their papers with him.

He exerted influence on the armed forces even when he did not hold a specific command through a military chancery
Chancery
Chancery may refer to:* Chancery , the building that houses a diplomatic mission, such as an embassy* Chancery , a medieval writing office* Chancery , in Ceredigion, Wales...

 that produced and received documents and papers on military affairs. This was headed by Alexander Brosch von Aarenau and eventually employed a staff of sixteen..

Franz in 1913, as heir to the elderly emperor, had been appointed inspector general of all the armed forces of Austria-Hungary (Generalinspektor der gesamten bewaffneten Macht), a position superior to that previously held by Archduke Albrecht and including presumed command in wartime.

Marriage and family


In 1894 Franz Ferdinand met Countess Sophie Chotek
Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg
Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg ; 1 March 1868 – 28 June 1914) was a Czech aristocrat, the morganatic wife of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria. Their assassination sparked World War I.- Early life :...

 at a ball in Prague
Prague
Prague is the capital and largest city of the Czech Republic. Situated in the north-west of the country on the Vltava river, the city is home to about 1.3 million people, while its metropolitan area is estimated to have a population of over 2.3 million...

. To be an eligible marriage
Marriage
Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. It is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged in a variety of ways, depending on the culture or subculture in which it is found...

 partner for a member of the Imperial House of Habsburg, one had to be a member of one of the reigning or formerly reigning dynasties of Europe. The Choteks were not one of these families, although they did include among their ancestors, in the female
Female
Female is the sex of an organism, or a part of an organism, which produces non-mobile ova .- Defining characteristics :The ova are defined as the larger gametes in a heterogamous reproduction system, while the smaller, usually motile gamete, the spermatozoon, is produced by the male...

 line, princes of Baden
Baden
Baden is a historical state on the east bank of the Rhine in the southwest of Germany, now the western part of the Baden-Württemberg of Germany....

, Hohenzollern-Hechingen
Hohenzollern-Hechingen
Hohenzollern-Hechingen was a county and principality in southwestern Germany. Its rulers belonged to a branch of the senior Swabian branch of the Hohenzollern dynasty.-History:...

, and Liechtenstein
Liechtenstein
The Principality of Liechtenstein is a doubly landlocked alpine country in Central Europe, bordered by Switzerland to the west and south and by Austria to the east. Its area is just over , and it has an estimated population of 35,000. Its capital is Vaduz. The biggest town is Schaan...

. One of Sophie's direct ancestors was Albert IV, Count of Habsburg
Albert IV, Count of Habsburg
Albert IV was Count of Habsburg in the Aargau and a progenitor of the royal House of Habsburg....

; he was descended from Elisabeth of Habsburg, a sister of King Rudolph I of Germany
Rudolph I of Germany
Rudolph I was King of the Romans from 1273 until his death. He played a vital role in raising the Habsburg dynasty to a leading position among the Imperial feudal dynasties...

. Franz Ferdinand was a descendant of King Rudolph I. Sophie was a lady-in-waiting
Lady-in-waiting
A lady-in-waiting is a female personal assistant at a royal court, attending on a queen, a princess, or a high-ranking noblewoman. Historically, in Europe a lady-in-waiting was often a noblewoman from a family highly thought of in good society, but was of lower rank than the woman on whom she...

 to Archduchess Isabella
Princess Isabella of Croÿ
Princess Isabella Hedwig Franziska Natalie of Croÿ was the daughter of Rudolf, Duke of Croÿ, and his wife Princess Natalie of Ligne.-Marriage and issue:...

, wife
Wife
A wife is a female partner in a marriage. The rights and obligations of the wife regarding her spouse and others, and her status in the community and in law, varies between cultures and has varied over time.-Origin and etymology:...

 of Archduke Friedrich, Duke of Teschen
Archduke Friedrich, Duke of Teschen
Archduke Friedrich, Duke of Teschen was a member of the House of Habsburg and the Supreme Commander of the Austro-Hungarian Army during World War I.-Early life:...

. Franz Ferdinand began to visit Archduke Friedrich's villa in Pressburg (now Bratislava
Bratislava
Bratislava is the capital of Slovakia and, with a population of about 431,000, also the country's largest city. Bratislava is in southwestern Slovakia on both banks of the Danube River. Bordering Austria and Hungary, it is the only national capital that borders two independent countries.Bratislava...

). Sophie wrote to Franz Ferdinand during his convalescence from tuberculosis
Tuberculosis
Tuberculosis, MTB, or TB is a common, and in many cases lethal, infectious disease caused by various strains of mycobacteria, usually Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Tuberculosis usually attacks the lungs but can also affect other parts of the body...

 on the island of Lošinj
Lošinj
Lošinj is a Croatian island in the northern Adriatic Sea, in the Kvarner Gulf. It is almost due south of the city of Rijeka and part of the Primorje-Gorski Kotar county....

 in the Adriatic
Adriatic Sea
The Adriatic Sea is a body of water separating the Italian Peninsula from the Balkan peninsula, and the system of the Apennine Mountains from that of the Dinaric Alps and adjacent ranges...

. They kept their relationship a secret for more than two years.

Deeply in love, Franz Ferdinand refused to consider marrying anyone else. Pope Leo XIII
Pope Leo XIII
Pope Leo XIII , born Vincenzo Gioacchino Raffaele Luigi Pecci to an Italian comital family, was the 256th Pope of the Roman Catholic Church, reigning from 1878 to 1903...

, Tsar Nicholas II of Russia
Nicholas II of Russia
Nicholas II was the last Emperor of Russia, Grand Prince of Finland, and titular King of Poland. His official short title was Nicholas II, Emperor and Autocrat of All the Russias and he is known as Saint Nicholas the Passion-Bearer by the Russian Orthodox Church.Nicholas II ruled from 1894 until...

, and the German Emperor Wilhelm II all made representations on his behalf to Emperor Franz Joseph of Austria, arguing that the disagreement between Franz Joseph and Franz Ferdinand was undermining the stability of the monarchy.

Finally, in 1899, Emperor Franz Joseph agreed to permit Franz Ferdinand to marry Sophie, on condition that the marriage would be morganatic and that their descendants would not have succession rights to the throne. Sophie would not share her husband's rank, title, precedence
Order of precedence
An order of precedence is a sequential hierarchy of nominal importance of items. Most often it is used in the context of people by many organizations and governments...

, or privileges; as such, she would not normally appear in public beside him. She would not be allowed to ride in the royal carriage or sit in the royal box.

The wedding took place on 1 July 1900, at Reichstadt (now Zákupy
Zákupy
Zákupy is a town in the Česká Lípa District, Liberec Region of the Czech Republic. The number of inhabitants is 2,642.-History:The earliest preserved document where the city appears is from 1306....

) in Bohemia
Bohemia
Bohemia is a historical region in central Europe, occupying the western two-thirds of the traditional Czech Lands. It is located in the contemporary Czech Republic with its capital in Prague...

; Franz Joseph did not attend the affair, nor did any archduke including Franz Ferdinand's brothers. The only members of the imperial family who were present were Franz Ferdinand's stepmother, Princess Maria Theresa of Braganza
Princess Maria Theresa of Braganza
Infanta Maria Theresa of Portugal was a Princess of the House of Braganza. She became by marriage an Archduchess of Austria and the sister-in-law of Emperor Franz Joseph I of Austria.-Early life:...

, and her two daughters. Upon the marriage, Sophie was given the title "Princess of Hohenberg" (Fürstin von Hohenberg) with the style "Her Serene Highness" (Ihre Durchlaucht). In 1909, she was given the more senior title "Duchess of Hohenberg" (Herzogin von Hohenberg) with the style "Her Highness" (Ihre Hoheit). This raised her status considerably, but she still yielded precedence at court to all the archduchesses. Whenever a function required the couple to gather with the other members of royalty, Sophie was forced to stand far down the line of importance, separated from her husband.

Franz Ferdinand's children were:
  • Princess Sophie von Hohenberg
    Princess Sophie von Hohenberg
    Princess Sophie of Hohenberg was the only daughter of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria and his morganatic wife Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg....

     (1901–1990), married Count Friedrich von Nostitz-Rieneck (1891–1973)
  • Maximilian, Duke of Hohenberg
    Maximilian, Duke of Hohenberg
    Maximilian, Duke of Hohenberg was the eldest son of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria-Hungary, and his morganatic wife Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg...

     (1902–1962), married Countess Elisabeth von Waldburg zu Wolfegg und Waldsee (1904–1993)
  • Prince Ernst von Hohenberg (1904–1954), married Marie-Therese Wood (1910–1985)

Character


The German historian Michael Freund described Franz Ferdinand as "a man of uninspired energy, dark in appearance and emotion, who radiated an aura of strangeness and cast a shadow of violence and recklessness ... a true personality amidst the amiable inanity that characterized Austrian society at this time." As his sometime admirer Karl Kraus
Karl Kraus
Karl Kraus was an Austrian writer and journalist, known as a satirist, essayist, aphorist, playwright and poet. He is regarded as one of the foremost German-language satirists of the 20th century, especially for his witty criticism of the press, German culture, and German and Austrian...

 put it, "he was not one who would greet you ... he felt no compulsion to reach out for the unexplored region which the Viennese call their heart." His relations with Emperor Franz Joseph were tense; the emperor's personal servant recalled in his memoirs that "thunder and lightning always raged when they had their discussions." The commentaries and orders which the heir to the throne wrote as margin notes to the documents of the Imperial central commission for architectural conservation (where he was Protector) reveal what can be described as "choleric conservativism."

Franz Ferdinand had a fondness for trophy hunting
Trophy hunting
Trophy hunting is the selective hunting of wild game animals. Although parts of the slain animal may be kept as a hunting trophy or memorial , the carcass itself is sometimes used as food....

 that was excessive even by the standards of European nobility of this time. In his diaries he kept track of an estimated 300,000 game kills, 5,000 of which were deer
Deer
Deer are the ruminant mammals forming the family Cervidae. Species in the Cervidae family include white-tailed deer, elk, moose, red deer, reindeer, fallow deer, roe deer and chital. Male deer of all species and female reindeer grow and shed new antlers each year...

. A small fraction of the trophies were on exhibit at his Bohemian castle at Konopiště
Konopište
Konopiště is a four-winged three storey château located in the Czech Republic, about southeast of Prague, outside the city of Benešov. It has become famous as the last residence of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, heir of the Austro-Hungarian throne, whose assassination in Sarajevo triggered...

 which he also stuffed with various antiquities, his other great collection passion.

Political views


Historians have disagreed on how to characterize the political philosophies of Franz Ferdinand, some attributing generally liberal views on the empire's nationalities while others have emphasized his dynastic centralism, Catholic conservatism, and tendency to clash with other leaders. He advocated granting greater autonomy to ethnic groups within the Empire and addressing their grievances, especially the Czechs in Bohemia
Bohemia
Bohemia is a historical region in central Europe, occupying the western two-thirds of the traditional Czech Lands. It is located in the contemporary Czech Republic with its capital in Prague...

 and the Yugoslavic peoples in Croatia
Croatia
Croatia , officially the Republic of Croatia , is a unitary democratic parliamentary republic in Europe at the crossroads of the Mitteleuropa, the Balkans, and the Mediterranean. Its capital and largest city is Zagreb. The country is divided into 20 counties and the city of Zagreb. Croatia covers ...

 and Bosnia, who had been left out of the Austro-Hungarian compromise of 1867. Yet his feelings towards the Hungarians were less generous; he regarded Magyar nationalism as a revolutionary threat to the Habsburg dynasty and reportedly became angry when officers of the 9th Hussars Regiment (which he commanded) spoke Magyar in his presence - despite the fact that it was the official regimental language. He further regarded the Hungarian branch of the Dual Monarchy's army, the Honvédség
Military of Hungary
The Hungarian Defence Force is the national military of Hungary. It currently has two branches, the Hungarian Ground Force and the Hungarian Air Force....

, as an unreliable and potentially threatening force within the empire, complaining at the Hungarians' failure to provide funds for the joint army and opposing the formation of artillery units within the Hungarian forces.

He also advocated a careful approach towards Serbia - repeatedly locking horns with Franz Conrad von Hötzendorf, Vienna's hard-line Chief of the General Staff, warning that harsh treatment of Serbia
Serbia
Serbia , officially the Republic of Serbia , is a landlocked country located at the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe, covering the southern part of the Carpathian basin and the central part of the Balkans...

 would bring Austria-Hungary into open conflict with Russia, to the ruin of both Empires.

He was disappointed when Austria-Hungary failed to act as a Great Power, such as during the Boxer Rebellion
Boxer Rebellion
The Boxer Rebellion, also called the Boxer Uprising by some historians or the Righteous Harmony Society Movement in northern China, was a proto-nationalist movement by the "Righteous Harmony Society" , or "Righteous Fists of Harmony" or "Society of Righteous and Harmonious Fists" , in China between...

; in 1900 other nations, including, in his description, "dwarf states like Belgium and Portugal", sent troops to protect Westerners and punish the Chinese, but Austria-Hungary did not.

Franz Ferdinand was a prominent and influential supporter of the Austro-Hungarian Navy
Austro-Hungarian Navy
The Austro-Hungarian Navy was the naval force of Austria-Hungary. Its official name in German was Kaiserliche und Königliche Kriegsmarine , abbreviated as k.u.k. Kriegsmarine....

 in a time when sea power was not a priority in Austrian foreign policy and the Navy was relatively little known and supported by the public. After his assassination in 1914, the Navy honoured Franz Ferdinand and his wife with a lying in state
Lying in state
Lying in state is a term used to describe the tradition in which a coffin is placed on view to allow the public at large to pay their respects to the deceased. It traditionally takes place in the principal government building of a country or city...

 aboard the SMS Viribus Unitis
SMS Viribus Unitis
SMS Viribus Unitis was the first Austro-Hungarian dreadnought battleship of the . Its name, meaning "With United Forces", was the personal motto of Emperor Franz Joseph I.Viribus Unitis was ordered by the Austro-Hungarian navy in 1908...

.

Assassination


On Sunday, 28 June 1914, at approximately 10:45 am, Franz Ferdinand and his wife were killed in Sarajevo
Sarajevo
Sarajevo |Bosnia]], surrounded by the Dinaric Alps and situated along the Miljacka River in the heart of Southeastern Europe and the Balkans....

, the capital of the Austro-Hungarian province of Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

, by Gavrilo Princip
Gavrilo Princip
Gavrilo Princip was the Bosnian Serb who assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria and his wife, Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg, in Sarajevo on 28 June 1914...

, 19 at the time, a member of Young Bosnia
Young Bosnia
Young Bosnia was a revolutionary movement active before World War I, the members were predominantly school students who were ethnic Serbs, but included Bosniaks...

 and one of a group of assassins organized by the Black Hand
Black Hand
Unification or Death , unofficially known as the Black Hand , was a secret military society formed by members of the Serbian army in the Kingdom of Serbia, which was founded on September 6, 1901. It was intent on uniting all of the territories containing significant Serb populations annexed by...

. The event led to a chain of events that eventually triggered World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

.

The couple had previously been attacked when a grenade was thrown at their car. Ferdinand deflected the grenade and it detonated far behind them. He is known to have shouted in anger to local officials, "So you welcome your guests with bombs?!"

The royal couple insisted on seeing all those injured at the hospital. After travelling there, Franz and Sophie decided to go to the palace, but their driver took a wrong turn onto a side street, where Princip spotted them. As the car was backing up, Princip approached and shot Sophie in the abdomen and Franz Ferdinand in the jugular. He was still alive when witnesses arrived to render aid. His dying words to Sophie were, 'Don't die darling, live for our children.' Princip had used the Browning .32 ACP
.32 ACP
.32 ACP , also known as the .32 Automatic is a pistol cartridge. It is a semi-rimmed, straight-walled cartridge developed by firearms designer John Browning, initially for use in the FN M1900 semi-automatic pistol...

 cartridge, a relatively low-power round, and a pocket-sized FN model 1910
FN Model 1910
The FN Model 1910 was a blowback-operated, semi-automatic pistol designed by John Browning and manufactured by Fabrique Nationale of Belgium.-Development:...

 pistol. The archduke's aides attempted to undo his coat but realized they needed scissors to cut it open. It was too late; he died within minutes. Sophie also died on route to the hospital.

A detailed account of the shooting can be found in Sarajevo by Joachim Remak:
One bullet pierced Franz Ferdinand's neck while the other pierced Sophie's abdomen. ... As the car was reversing (to go back to the Governor's residence because the entourage thought the Imperial couple were unhurt) a thin streak of blood shot from the Archduke's mouth onto Count Harrach's right cheek (he was standing on the car's running board). Harrach drew out a handkerchief to still the gushing blood. The Duchess, seeing this, called: "For Heaven's sake! What happened to you?" and sank from her seat, her face falling between her husband's knees.


Harrach and Potoriek ... thought she had fainted ... only her husband seemed to have an instinct for what was happening. Turning to his wife despite the bullet in his neck, Franz Ferdinand pleaded: "Sopherl! Sopherl! Sterbe nicht! Bleibe am Leben für unsere Kinder! - Sophie dear! Don't die! Stay alive for our children!". Having said this, he seemed to sag down himself. His plumed hat ... fell off; many of its green feathers were found all over the car floor. Count Harrach seized the Archduke by the uniform collar to hold him up. He asked "Leiden Eure Kaiserliche Hoheit sehr? - Is Your Imperial Highness
Highness
Highness, often used with a possessive adjective , is an attribute referring to the rank of the dynasty in an address...

 suffering very badly?" "Es ist nichts - It is nothing" said the Archduke in a weak but audible voice. He seemed to be losing consciousness during his last few minutes, but, his voice growing steadily weaker, he repeated the phrase perhaps six or seven times more.


A rattle
Death rattle
A death rattle is a medical term that describes the sound produced by someone who is near death when saliva accumulates in the throat. Those who are dying may lose their ability to swallow, resulting in such an accumulation...

 began to issue from his throat, which subsided as the car drew in front of the Konak bersibin (Town Hall).
Despite several doctors' efforts, the Archduke
Archduke
The title of Archduke denotes a noble rank above Duke and below King, used only by princes of the Houses of Habsburg and Habsburg-Lorraine....

 died shortly after being carried into the building while his beloved wife was almost certainly dead from internal bleeding before the motorcade reached the Konak.


The assassinations, along with the arms race
Arms race
The term arms race, in its original usage, describes a competition between two or more parties for the best armed forces. Each party competes to produce larger numbers of weapons, greater armies, or superior military technology in a technological escalation...

, nationalism
Nationalism
Nationalism is a political ideology that involves a strong identification of a group of individuals with a political entity defined in national terms, i.e. a nation. In the 'modernist' image of the nation, it is nationalism that creates national identity. There are various definitions for what...

, imperialism
Imperialism
Imperialism, as defined by Dictionary of Human Geography, is "the creation and/or maintenance of an unequal economic, cultural, and territorial relationships, usually between states and often in the form of an empire, based on domination and subordination." The imperialism of the last 500 years,...

, militarism
Militarism
Militarism is defined as: the belief or desire of a government or people that a country should maintain a strong military capability and be prepared to use it aggressively to defend or promote national interests....

, and the alliance system all contributed to the Origins of World War I, which began less than two months after Franz Ferdinand's death, with Austria-Hungary's declaration of war against Serbia. The assassination of Ferdinand is considered the most immediate cause of World War I.

Franz Ferdinand is interred with his wife Sophie in Artstetten Castle
Artstetten Castle
Artstetten Castle is a castle near the Wachau valley in Lower Austria, in the community of Artstetten-Pöbring....

, Austria. Video: Franz Ferdinand's Funeral

Present-day commemorations




Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his Castle of Artstetten
Artstetten Castle
Artstetten Castle is a castle near the Wachau valley in Lower Austria, in the community of Artstetten-Pöbring....

 were selected as a main motif for the Austrian 10 euro The Castle of Artstetten commemorative coin, minted on 13 October 2004. The reverse shows the entrance to the crypt of the Hohenberg family. There are two portraits below, showing Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg.

Ancestry





External links