Friday, June 3, 2011

Archduchess Clotilde has died

Archduchess Clotilde with her first child

Archduke Josef and Archduchess Clotilde
June 3, 1927

Archduchess Clotilde of Austria, the mother of Archduke Joseph, died today at her castle at Alcsut. near Budapest, reports the New York Times.  She was also the sister of former King Ferdinand of Bulgaria.

A granddaughter of King Louis Philippe of France,  Archduchess Clotilde was born in 1846.  In 1864, she married Archduke Joseph of Austria, the head of the Hungarian branch of the Habsburg dynasty.   During the reign of Bela Kun after the world war, the Archduchess "was persecuted by the Bolsheviks," and she fled the country.

The Archduchess was the daughter of Prince Augustus of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and Princess Clothilde of Orléans.  Her husband was a "patron of art and scientific agriculture," and he "established a model farm on a large scale on their estate at Alcsut."   Archduke Joseph died at his favorite palace at Fiume.  Their son, Archduke Joseph, has been called "the most popular Habsburg."

Archduchess Clotilde was proud of her Coburg and Orléans ancestry.  She was "energetic and ever anxious for the advancement and glory of her family."  She took part in "many political plots in the interest of her relatives before and after the water."   She also campaigned actively to return her brother, Ferdinand, to the Bulgarian throne.  

The Archduchess and her husband had seven children:  Archduchess Elisabeth (1865-1866),  Archduchess Maria Dorothea (1867), widow of the Duke of Orléans, Archduchess Margarete (1870), the wife of the Prince of Thurn und Taxis, Archduke Joseph, who is married to Princess Auguste of Bavaria, Archduke Laszlo ( 1875-1895), Archduchess Elisabeth Henriette (1883), and Archduchess Klothilde (1884-1903). 

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