Franz Ferdinand

Archduke of Austria, 1863-1914

Franz Ferdinand was the eldest son of Archduke Karl Ludwig of Austria, the younger brother of Emperor Franz Joseph I. Following the suicide of Crown Prince Rudolf in 1889 and the death of Karl Ludwig in 1896, Franz Ferdinand became the heir presumptive to the Austro-Hungarian throne. His courtship of Sophie Chotek, a lady-in-waiting, caused conflict within the imperial household. In 1914, Franz Ferdinand and his wife were assassinated in Sarajevo by the 19-year-old Gavrilo Princip, a member of Young Bosnia. His assassination triggered a series of events that eventually led to Austria-Hungary's allies and Serbia's allies declaring war on each other, starting World War I.

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Franz Ferdinand

Erzherzog von Österreich (1863-1914). Autograph letter signed. Salzburg. 4to. 4 pp. Doppelblatt. Leicht gebräunt. Mit gedr. Adresse „Schloss Blühnbach, Salzburg“.
$ 13,032 / 12.000 € (94646)

Important letter to the Princess of Liechtenstein, written almost a year before his assassination: "I have a guilty conscience that I am only responding to your gracious letter from Blankenberghe today, but upon my return, I had so much to do; the various speakers pounced on me like starving tigers, so that only today can I stammer my thanks. You are so kind to inquire about our well-being. Thank God, despite the normal foul weather, the seaside resort has done me and mine very well; as you have read, I am a bold swimmer, but the waves crashing onto my sparsely haired crown have caused my hearing to suffer greatly, so that I must undergo a very tedious and partially painful cure with the famous Dr.

Pause. With heartfelt regards. Of course, the weather here is also dreadful, and we must heat the castle! In August! I hope that it will be possible for me to come to Vaduz someday to visit you and the others, and secondly, to inspect the restoration with a critical eye. How long do you intend to stay there? Thank God, it seems that this Balkan mess has finally come to an end; this rabble has caused us far too much work, agitation, and annoyance. Especially the Knight of the Fleece and owner Ferdinand have behaved infamously. In the coming days, I must go to Enns for grand festivities as I have become the owner of my beloved 4th Dragoon Regiment. Then come inspections and maneuvers. As I repeat my thanks once again, my wife and I send you and the Prince our warmest regards [...]" The Ferdinand mentioned in the letter could be Leopold Wölfling, Archduke Leopold Ferdinand of Austria-Tuscany..

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Franz Ferdinand

Erzherzog von Österreich (1863-1914). Eigenh. Brief mit U. Eckartsau a. d. Donau. 06.10.1907. 4 SS. auf Dopelblatt. 8vo.
$ 3,801 / 3.500 € (62203/BN45355)

An eine Fürstin (Liechtenstein?): "[...] Leider kam mein Projekt die Herrschaften in Ihrer Haupt-Residenzstadt, am Sitze Ihrer Thätigkeit zu besuchen nicht zur Ausführung, aber Sie waren ja durch die Anwesenheit u. die Unterhaltungssucht des dicken siebenten Edi so in Anspruch genommen, daß ich Sie gar nicht hätte genießen können. Außerdem bin ich durch unsere herrlichen politischen zustände wo nur mehr Juden, Sozialdemokraten u. Ungarn unsere altehrwürdige Monarchie commandieren derart wild u.

desperat, daß mein alter Humor schwer gelitten hat u. ich nur sehr einen langweiligen Gesellschafter abgegeben hätte. Jetzt bin ich mit der ganzen Familie in Eckartsau werde immer grauer u. grauer und bekomme immer mehr Falten auf der Denkerstirne. Zu meinem größten Bedauern ersehe ich aus Ihrem Briefe daß Fürstin den Sommer nicht ganz wohl waren. Hoffentlich haben Sie sich schon wieder erholt und genießen recht den Aufenthalt in Liechtenstein [...]". - Auf Briefpapier mit gepr. Vignette..

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Franz Ferdinand

Eigenh. Kartenbrief mit U. ("EhFranz").
Autograph ist nicht mehr verfügbar

To lieutnant Otto Edler von Cron in Zara, sending New Year's Greetings. - Folded; with printed scenes from Egypt. Together with a letter to lieutnant Cron written by a comrade of Franz Ferdinand (Monte Carlo, 27. IV. 1896; large 8vo, ¾ p. on bifolium, letterhead of Saint James Hotel in Monte Carlo).


Franz Ferdinand

Eigenh. Brief mit U.
Autograph ist nicht mehr verfügbar