Archduke Felix of Austria


Archduke Felix of Austria

Archduke Felix of Austria (born 31 May 1916) is a son of the last Austrian Emperor Charles I and a member of the House of Habsburg. He is a younger brother of Crown Prince Otto of Austria the current head of the House.

Early life and exile

Archduke Felix was born in the Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna the third son of the then heir presumptive to the throne of Austria-Hungary the Archduke Charles and his wife Zita of Bourbon-Parma. On 21 November 1916 the Emperor Franz Joseph died and Felix's father succeeded as the new Emperor of Austria and King of Hungary.

Archduke Felix was less than three years old when Austria-Hungary collapsed following its defeat in the First World War. As a result, republics were declared in the now-separate countries Austria and Hungary which led to exile of the Imperial Family. During his time in exile he has lived in Portugal, Belgium, Mexico and the United States.cite news | last = Bridge | first = Adrian | title = Habsburg seeks right to return | publisher = The Independent | date = 1996-03-12 | url = http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4158/is_19960312/ai_n14033541 | accessdate = 2008-02-15 ]

During the Second World War while in the United States, Felix and his brother Karl Ludwig volunteered to serve in the 101st US Infantry Battalion known as the "Free Austria Battalion". However the battalion was disbanded when a number of exiled Jewish volunteers who made up the majority of force ultimately declined to confirm their enlistment. [cite book |title=Uncrowned Emperor |last=Brook-Shepherd |first=Gordon |year=2003 |publisher=Hambledon Continuum |isbn=1852854391 |pages=156 ]

Return to Austria

Felix, unlike his brother Otto, has always refused to renounce his rights to the Austrian throne and membership of the Habsburg family, saying that doing so would violate his human rights. As a result he was banned from entering Austria except for a brief three-day stay in 1989 in order to attend his mother's funeral. On March 10 1996, after Austria had joined the European Union and the concurrent dropping of staffed border checkpoints between Austria and other EU countries, he crossed into the country from Germany and held a press conference the next day to announce his illegal arrival.cite news | last = Gedye | first = Robin | title = Austria to end law barring Habsburgs from family home | publisher = Daily Telegraph | date = 1996-04-15 | url = http://www.telegraph.co.uk/htmlContent.jhtml?html=/archive/1996/04/15/waust15.html | accessdate = 2008-02-15 ] After his presence became known, he was warned by the Austrian government that he would face prosecution if he ever tried to sneak in again. [cite news | title = Habsburg row shakes Austria | publisher = The Independent | date = 1996-03-14 | url = http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4158/is_19960314/ai_n14033896 | accessdate = 2008-02-15 ] Ultimately, a deal was reached between Felix, his brother Karl Ludwig and the Austrian government whereby they declared their allegiance to the republic without any reference being made to their rights to the throne or to their membership in the Imperial Family.

In June 1998, in a joint action with his brother Karl Ludwig, Felix attempted to have the properties which were given to their ancestor Maria Theresa of Austria by her husband Francis I, Holy Roman Emperor restored to them after the properties had been taken from the Habsburg family by Adolf Hitler during the Anschluss. [cite news | last = Gimson | first = Andrew | title = Habsburgs seek property 'taken by Nazis' | publisher = Daily Telegraph | date = 1998-06-01 | url = http://www.telegraph.co.uk/htmlContent.jhtml?html=/archive/1998/06/01/whab01.html | accessdate = 2008-02-15 ]

Felix has built up a number of successful businesses in Mexico and Brussels and has worked as a marketing consultant. [cite news | last = James | first = Barry | title = Son of Last Kaiser Meets Vienna Press : A Habsburg Defies Exile From Austria | publisher = International Herald Tribune | date = 1996-03-12 | url = http://www.iht.com/articles/1996/03/12/duke.t.php | accessdate = 2008-02-15 ]

Marriage and children

Felix was married civilly on 18 November 1952 at Beaulieu, France, and religiously a day later, to Princess and Duchess Anna-Eugénie of Arenberg (1925-1997).cite web | last = Lundy | first = Darryl | title = Felix Ferdinand Erzherzog von Österreich | publisher =The Peerage | url = http://www.thepeerage.com/p11167.htm#i111664 | accessdate =2008-02-15 ] They had seven children.
*Archduchess Maria del Pilar of Austria (born 1953) married Vollrad-Joachim Edler von Poschinger (born 1952)
*Archduke Carl Philipp (Carlos Felipe) of Austria (born 1954) married first (div 1997) Martina Donath. Married second Annie-Claire Christine Lacrambe (born 1959)
*Archduchess Kinga of Austria (born 1955) married Baron Wolfgang von Erffa (born 1948)
*Archduke Raimund (Ramon) of Austria (1958-2008) married Bettine Götz (born 1969)
*Archduchess Myriam of Austria (born 1959) married Jaime Acheson (born 1955)
*Archduke István of Austria (born 1961) married Paola de Temesváry (born 1971)
*Archduchess Viridis of Austria (born 1962) married Karl Dunning-Gribble (born 1961)

Honours and patronages

*Knight of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta
*Knight of the Order of the Golden Fleece

Along with his brothers Otto and Rudolf, Archduke Felix was a patron for the revived Almanach de Gotha. [cite web |url=http://web.archive.org/web/20060211154712/www.almanachdegotha.com/site/pat.htm |title=Comité de Patronage |accessdate=2008-08-09 |publisher=Almanach de Gotha ]

Ancestry

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1= 1. Archduke Felix of Austria
2= 2. Charles I of Austria
3= 3. Zita of Parma
4= 4. Archduke Otto Francis of Austria
5= 5. Princess Maria Josepha of Saxony
6= 6. Robert I, Duke of Parma
7= 7. Infanta Maria Antonia of Portugal
8= 8. Archduke Charles Louis of Austria
9= 9. Princess Maria Annunciata of Bourbon-Two Sicilies
10= 10. George of Saxony
11= 11. Maria Anna of Portugal
12= 12. Charles III, Duke of Parma
13= 13. Princess Louise Marie Thérèse of France
14= 14. Michael of Portugal
15= 15. Adelaide of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg
16= 16. Archduke Francis Charles of Austria
17= 17. Princess Sophie of Bavaria
18= 18. Ferdinand II of the Two Sicilies
19= 19. Maria Theresa of Austria
20= 20. John of Saxony
21= 21. Amelia of Bavaria
22= 22. Ferdinand II of Portugal
23= 23. Maria II of Portugal
24= 24. Charles II, Duke of Parma
25= 25. Maria Teresa of Savoy
26= 26. Charles Ferdinand, Duke of Berry
27= 27. Princess Caroline of the Two Sicilies
28= 28. John VI of Portugal
29= 29. Charlotte of Spain
30= 30. Constantine, Hereditary Prince of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg
31= 31. Princess Marie of Hohenlohe-Langenburg

References


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