What are some sissy ideas
The young Sisi
Sisi was born in Munich on December 24, 1837. The fact that Christmas Eve also fell on a Sunday this year was seen as a sign of good luck.
Sisi came from a Wittelsbach branch. Her father Max was a duke in Bavaria and not of Bavaria. Her mother, Duchess Ludovica, was the daughter of the Bavarian king and also the aunt of the Austrian emperor.
Sisi was very much shaped by her father, who was a strong and colorful personality. Duke Max was politically liberal, unconventional and lived his own life. He enjoyed spending his time traveling, partying and horse riding. And he loved the circus.
In the garden part of the Munich palace he had set up a circus tent and gave horse riding demonstrations himself. She inherited Sisi's love of nature and physical activity from her father.
Elisabeth and her seven siblings did not receive a classical education, as was intended for descendants of the high nobility. Normally girls like Sisi would have had to dance, embroider and learn languages.
The children, on the other hand, romped around outdoors and spent their time hiking, swimming and horse riding. When the family was in Possenhofen on Lake Starnberg in the summer months, they would also hang out with the farmer's children in the area.
This free and informal life was not infrequently met with incomprehension by relatives or in aristocratic society. Nevertheless, as unconventional as Sisi's family was in their upbringing - when it came to the future of the children, nothing was left to chance.
Sisi and Franz Joseph
The mother of the Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph invited her sister Ludovica, together with their two older daughters Helene and Sisi, to Bad Ischl in the Salzkammergut. There the young Bavarian princesses were supposed to meet their cousin Franz Joseph again after many years.
Franz Joseph, his mother had decided, should get married - in the Catholic-German area. What was closer than your own family?
The fact that Sisi's big sister Helene should be paired with the young emperor first is a myth that has lasted for a long time. The Austrian Archduchess Sophie wanted to give her son the choice. And Franz Joseph made a decision at the joint meeting within hours.
He fell in love with the young, lovely Sisi almost at first sight and was to admire her for the rest of his life.
Franz Joseph was the most sought-after bachelor of his time at the time. He was a powerful and wealthy monarch who ruled a large empire of 56 million people. In addition, the emperor was handsome and charming.
Sisi was torn. On the one hand, Franz Joseph was a good match and looked splendid. On the other hand, Sisi was also afraid of the life that would await her.
Once she said: "Oh, if only he were a tailor." But you don't give an emperor a basket and so after the meeting in Ischl she only had a few months to say goodbye to her beloved life.
Sisi reached her new home Austria on a Danube steamer. She was accompanied by her whole family. The bridal trip took them through the lovely Wachau. The Emperor was already waiting for them in Nussdorf, the port of Vienna. Franz Joseph could hardly wait to hug his young bride.
Before the wedding, Elisabeth lived with her relatives in Schönbrunn. The palace complex was so large and magnificent as Sisi had never seen it before in her life. The 16-year-old was already completely overwhelmed.
One day before the wedding, the bride solemnly moved into Vienna. She sat next to the bride's mother in a glass carriage. Scared and overwhelmed, Sisi burst into tears.
On April 24, 1854, the wedding took place in the Augustinian Church. The ceremony was chaired by the Archbishop of Vienna. Everything of rank and name was present. After the service, the official festival program began.
The newly wed couple first received all the dignitaries of the empire. Officers, envoys and ambassadors paid their respects to the imperial couple. Elisabeth was now the first woman of the empire.
Life in the Hofburg
After the pompous wedding celebrations, which lasted a week, Sisi began life as a young empress in the Vienna Hofburg, the ancestral seat of the Austrian imperial family.
Just two weeks after the wedding, Sisi wrote in a poem "I have woken up in a dungeon, and there are shackles on my hand. And my longing grows stronger and stronger - and freedom! You, turned away from me!"
Sisi's life in Vienna had changed radically. In her previous life she had no obligations. Now she was subject to a strict program.
The Spanish court ceremony was still in force at the Habsburg court. From the hour she was awakened to the morning prayer and the meals Elizabeth ate, everything was set.
Also what to wear and when, who to talk to, which visits to make: everything was planned down to the last detail.
The fact that Sisi had a bad relationship with her mother-in-law Sophie belongs to the realm of clichés. Archduchess Sophie loved her son more than anything. She was glad that he was happy with Sisi.
In the early years that Sisi spent at the Hofburg, she was underemployed. Apart from walks, horse-drawn carriage trips to the Prater, regular meetings with family members and visits to the theater or the opera, she had hardly anything to do.
Only later did she put together her own daily program, which consisted of a lot of sport, language lessons, literature, reading and writing poetry and hours of beauty treatment.
Only a year after the wedding, the first daughter Sophie was born. It was followed by Gisela and finally the Crown Prince Rudolf. The death of the eldest daughter was a turning point for Sisi.
Franz Joseph and Sisi were traveling in Hungary with their two older children. The trip was grueling and the girls developed diarrhea. While Gisela was recovering, Sophie died.
The death of her eldest daughter was such a big shock for Elisabeth that she handed the children over to her mother-in-law to raise.
Sisi suffered from illness and depression just a few years after the wedding and went traveling for two years. During this time she had become estranged from her children. The little son Rudolf could hardly remember his mother when she saw him again.
And Elisabeth hardly cared about her children anymore. Her youngest daughter Marie Valerie alone was all her love and care. When Sisi returned from her two-year trip, she appeared more confident. She was very careful to live her own life. From then on she kept the court in Vienna at a distance.
Sisi and Hungary
As a kind of defiant reaction, Sisi was interested in everything that was frowned upon at court. And that was Hungary, for example. In addition, Sisi had various Hungarian ladies-in-waiting whom she had made aware of the conditions in her country.
Until Elisabeth's death, Ida Ferenczy was to be her closest confidante. Sisi raved about the spirited Hungarian people. In this way she became an ardent advocate of Hungarian interests.
The Habsburg court soon recognized Sisi's preferences and consciously used them for their own political goals. Gyula Andrássy, a leading Hungarian nobleman, knew that Sisi had influence over the emperor and launched his interests directly through Sisi instead of taking the official route.
A compromise with Hungary was reached and Sisi was crowned Queen of Hungary alongside Franz Joseph.
Elisabeth was in close contact with Count Andrássy, but there is no evidence that the two became closer. Andrássy was interested in Sisi as a mediator of his political ideas.
Elisabeth once said herself: "Yes, that was a loyal friendship and it was not poisoned by love."
The Empress' lifestyle, who traveled more than at court, had made the family strangers to each other. Crown Prince Rudolf was most like his mother. The Empress ignored his longing for her attention.
Rudolf spent most of his time in various sciences. Although he had long been married to the Belgian Princess Stephanie, his preference was still for other women.
With his new girlfriend Mary Vetsera he drove to Mayerling Castle southwest of Vienna. There Rudolf shot the girl first, then himself. Rumors spread that the 17-year-old Mary Vetsera had poisoned the crown prince and then herself.
It was not until the next day that the family received news of the real cause of death. Elisabeth and the emperor were shocked.
Rudolf's suicide was a turning point in her life. According to his rank and his birth, Rudolf was buried in the Capuchin Crypt in Vienna. After the death of her son, Empress Elisabeth only wore black clothes as a token of her mourning.
But in the tragedy she did not see her son Rudolf, but rather herself as a victim. After Rudolf's suicide, she finally withdrew from the public eye. Elisabeth suffered from depression.
The assassination attempt
In the family circle, Sisi kept saying: "I want my soul to flee to heaven through a very small opening in the heart." Nobody suspected that this was exactly what fate had intended for them during a stay in Geneva.
In the early autumn of 1898, Sisi spent a few days on Lake Geneva. She stayed at the Hotel Beau Rivage. On September 10, she left the hotel to do some shopping in town for her daughter Marie Valerie.
A boat trip on Lake Geneva was planned for the afternoon. Sisi was accompanied by her lady-in-waiting, Irma Starei. They covered the few steps to the landing stage on foot. Then the unimaginable happened.
Sisi was caught and stabbed by a strange man. Leaning on her lady-in-waiting, Sisi reached the ship. There she passed out. She was taken back to the hotel immediately. Here only death could be determined.
The news of her death spread like wildfire. The police arrested the murderer Luigi Lucheni in the immediate vicinity of the hotel. The Italian migrant worker and anarchist still boasted about his deed. He had stabbed the Empress with a sharp file.
A court sentenced him to life imprisonment. The Empress was taken to Vienna in her saloon car. She was buried in the Capuchin Crypt.
When Franz Joseph heard about it, he said that no one knew how much he loved this woman. The pity of the Austrian people went to Emperor Franz Joseph, who had to endure another stroke of fate after the suicide of his son. Very few mourned Sisi.
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