Friday, December 10, 2010

Empress Elisabeth of Austria


A tribute to the beautiful aunt, godmother and namesake of Queen Elisabeth of the Belgians. Apparently, the memory of her glamorous but troubled forebear was always something of a trial for her great-niece, Princess Marie-José of Belgium, the last Queen of Italy. To her biographer, Luciano Regolo, Marie-José humorously described her long-standing irritation with the romantic cult of the tragic empress. Once, at a dinner in Paris, with a group of historians, the Italian queen had endured the sentimental posturing of her neighbor at table, who nostalgically sighed "Sissie...oh Sissie..." throughout the entire evening. When he began rhapsodizing over the empress's eyes, Marie-José lost patience. "Pardon me," she inquired, ironically, "did you perhaps know her?" The man turned purple and fell silent.

Here is an interesting contrast between Elisabeth of Austria and Elisabeth of Belgium, from the memoirs of Count Sforza. 

5 comments:

MadMonarchist said...

There's no denying there is something very attractive about the Empress, and like most there is just something about her I find fascinating. However, I've never been able to be a real fan as she just always seemed to me to have a sort of self-obsessed nature about her. I am more impressed by those who put their own happiness second to their duty to their family and country.

Matterhorn said...

I feel the same way. Yet, I also sense a genuine sweetness in her.

Christina said...

Matterhorn, the video is so beautiful - do you know who is singing and where it comes from?

I agree with you and Mad Monarchist about the sentimentalisation of her, and her morbid, self absorbed nature...but she was part of that unstable Wittlesbach family and it must have been so stifling for so free a spirit to be suddenly caught up - so young! - in the Austrian Court.
I, too, admire those who appear less romantic in their devotion to their real duties, but these differences in character is what makes all these people so fascinating, isn't it? And she did maintain a certain dignity especially by continuing to walk on in spite of being fatally wounded by her stabbing...

A very beautiful video - thank you for posting it!

Matterhorn said...

The song is Petra Berger's "If I Had A Wish."

http://www.clubrapid.com/song/136684

Thank you for your lovely comment and I agree, she had alot with which to contend.

Christina said...

Thank you, Matterhorn. I had never heard the song before (nor heard of the singer) but it is beautiful.