Ferdinand of Austria-Este (1754–1806)
Francis IV of Austria-Este (1779–1846)
Francis V of Austria-Este (1819–1875)
Francis Ferdinand of Austria-Este (1863–1914)
Robert of Austria-Este (1915–1996)

Archduke of Austria-Este (Italian: arciduca d'Austria-Este; German: Erzherzog von Österreich-Este) and Habsburg-Este (Italian: Asburgo-Este) are a title and a surname which have been used by several cadet branches of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine to denote a connection with the extinct Italian princely and feudal family of Este and the Duchy of Modena ruled by them. As a younger branch of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine, the Habsburg-Estes are also Archdukes and Archduchesses of Austria, Princes and Princesses of Hungary and Bohemia.

Ercole III d'Este, the last Este duke of Modena, of the direct line of Este, was deposed of rulership in 1796 by the French as his Italian principality was incorporated into the Cisalpine Republic, later Napoleonic Kingdom of Italy. However in 1814, when the French rule was abolished in Italy (but after the death of Duke Ercole), Modena was returned to his daughter Mary Beatrice d'Este and her son Archduke Francis of Austria-Este.

Duke Ercole III was compensated with the principality of Breisgau, located in southern Germany. Its former rulers, Habsburgs ceded this province to him, in anticipation of it falling eventually to the Habsburg family again, since Ercole's sole daughter was married to a cadet Habsburg, Archduke Ferdinand of Austria-Este. Duke Ercole died in 1803 and Breisgau was inherited by his daughter (and her husband), who soon (1805) lost it to the expanding Grand Duchy of Baden.

The family, cognatically descended from the Estes, ruled the Duchy of Modena and Reggio again from 1814 to 1859, using the names Asburgo-Este (Habsburg-Este) and its variants. The Duchy bore also titles Duke of Reggio, of Mirandola, of Massa, Prince of Carrara and Lunigniana, as well as since 1847 Duke of Guastalla. The principality lost its independence to the new united Italy, and Francesco V, the last duke was deposed.

Francis V, Duke of Modena (1846–59, died 1875) withdrew to Austria where he lived most of the rest of his life. After the death of his mother in 1840, Francis was considered the legitimate heir to the English and Scottish thrones by Jacobites (with the regnal title King Francis I). When Francis died at Vienna on November 20, 1875, his family became extinct in the male line. His heir general and heir-of-the-blood was his niece, Archduchess Maria Theresia of Austria-Este (died 1919), who then was married with Prince Ludwig of Bavaria (they later became King and Queen of Bavaria). The heir-general of line of the Este family continues in their descendants, and the present heir is Franz, Duke of Bavaria.

However, Francis V had decided to retain the Este name in the Habsburg family, and left most of his huge estate to his young cousin Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, with certain conditions, one of which is that the heir and future heirs use the name of Este. The tradition of Este family thus fell to the line of Archduke Charles Louis, younger brother to then Emperor Francis Joseph. It is said that Austria-Este is some sort of "secundogeniture" title in Austrian imperial family.

As explained, the first "adoptee" was Archduke Franz Ferdinand, b 1863 (not descended from Mary Beatrice d'Este), who took the name Austria-Este, and also in 1896 became the heir presumptive of the Austrian Empire, but was murdered 28 June 1914 in Sarajevo. Since his own children were born in morganatic marriage (see House of Hohenberg), the Habsburgs designated his soon-to-be born great-nephew Robert (born 8 February 1915), second son of the future emperor Charles, as the next "adopted Austria-Este". Through his mother Zita of Parma (a great-granddaughter of Teresa of Savoy, Duchess of Lucca and Parma, who was daughter of Teresa of Modena, Queen of Sardinia, who was daughter of Mary Beatrice d'Este and Ferdinand of Austria, Duchess and Duke of Breisgau and Modena), Archduke Robert happened to be a descendant of Duke Ercole III d'Este and thus the blood of last Este dukes joined with the name Austria-Este.

Archduke Robert decreed that all his descendants in male line are entitled to the surname Austria-Este, and he took also the title Duke of Este, which is intended to be carried by the head of the family of Austria-Este.

Today, the carrier of such tradition is Archduke Lorenz Otto Charles of Austria-Este, born 1955, eldest son of Archduke Robert and Princess Margherita of Savoy-Aosta. Archduke Lorenz is married to Princess Astrid of Belgium, the only daughter of King Albert II of Belgium. Since the throne of Belgium is inheritable also by females (and males no longer have precedence over females), Princess Astrid is the heiress of Belgium immediately after the issue of Crown Prince Philip. As such, her husband Archduke Lorenz of Austria-Este, Duke of Este, was in 1995 elevated to the additional title of Prince of Belgium. The children of the couple are since 1991 titled Archduke (Archduchess) of Austria-Este and Prince(ss) of Belgium. The eldest of these is Prince Amedeo of Belgium, Archduke of Austria-Este, born 1986.


Family trees

Archdukes of Austria

Maria Theresa (1717–1780)
× Francis I (1708–1765)
+-- Ferdinand Karl Anton (1754–1806)
|  × Maria Beatrice Ricciarda d'Este (1750–1829)
|  |
|  +-- Ferdinand Karl (1781–1850)
|  +-- Karl (1785–1809)
|  +-- Marie Ludovika (1787–1816)
|      × Franz I of Austria
+-- Leopold II (1747–1792)
    × Maria Luisa of Spain (1745–1792)
    +-- Franz I (1768–1835)
        × Marie Ludovika, daughter of his uncle Ferdinand Karl
        × Maria Theresa of Two Sicilies (1772–1807)
        +-- Ferdinand I (1793–1875)
        +-- Marie Louise, Empress of France
        +-- Maria Leopoldina, Empress of Brazil
        +-- Franz Karl (1802–1878)
            × Sophie of Bavaria (1805–1872)
            +-- Franz Joseph (1830–1916)
            |   × Elisabeth "Sissi" of Austria
            +-- Maximilian I of Mexico (1832–1867)
            +-- Maria Anna (1835–1840)
            +-- Ludwig Victor (1842–1919) (Ludwig Victor was younger than Karl Ludwig)
            +-- Karl Ludwig (1833–1896)
                × Maria Annunziata of Bourbon-Sicily
                +-- Franz Ferdinand (1863–1914)
                +-- Otto (1865–1906)
                    × Maria Josepha of Saxony
                    +-- Karl I (1887–1922), Last Emperor of Austria
                    |   × Zita of Bourbon-Parma (1892–1989)
                    |   |
                    |   +-- Otto (1912–2011)
                    |   |   × Regina of Saxe-Meiningen (1925–2010)
                    |   |   |
                    |   |   +--Karl (1961- ), Current head of the Habsburg Family
                    |   +-- Robert (1915–1996)
                    |   |   × Margherita of Savoy-Aosta (1930– )
                    |   |   | 
                    |   |   +-- Maria Beatrix (1954– )
                    |   |   +-- Lorenz (1955– ), Duke of Este
                    |   |   |   × Astrid of Belgium (1962– )
                    |   |   |   | 
                    |   |   |   +-- Amedeo (1986– ), Hereditary Duke of Este
                    |   |   |   +-- Maria Laura (1988– )
                    |   |   |   +-- Joachim (1991– )
                    |   |   |   +-- Luisa Maria (1995– )
                    |   |   |   +-- Laetitia Maria (2003– )
                    |   |   +-- Gerhard (1957– )
                    |   |   +-- Martin (1959– )
                    |   |   +-- Isabella (1963– )
                    |   +-- Felix (1916–2011)
                    |   +-- Carl Ludwig (1918–2007)
                    |   +-- Rudolph (1919–2010)
                    +-- Maximilian (1895–1952)

Dukes of Modena

Rinaldo III d'Este
× Charlotte, Duchess of Braunschweig-Lüneburg
+-- Francesco III (1698–1780)
    × Teresa di Castellborco
    × Charlotte d'Orléans
    +-- Ercole III (1727–1803)
        × Maria Teresa Cybo di Carrera
        +-- Rinaldo Francesco d'Este (1753)
        +-- Maria Beatrice (1750–1829)
            × Ferdinand Karl, Archduke of Austria
            +-- Josef Franz (1772)
            +-- Franz IV of Austria-Este (1779–1846)
            |   × Maria Beatrice, Princess of Savoie
            |   |
            |   +-- Maria Theresia of Austria-Este (1817–1886)
            |   |   × Henri V of Bourbon
            |   +-- Franz V of Austria-Este (1819–1875)
            |   |   × Adelgunde, Princess of Bayern
            |   |   |
            |   |   +-- Anna Beatrice of Austria-Este (1848–1849)
            |   |
            |   +-- Ferdinand Karl Austria-Este (1821–1849)
            |   |   × Elizabeth Austria (granddaughter of Emperor Leopold II)
            |   |   |
            |   |   +-- Maria Theresia of Austria-Este (1849–1919)
            |   |       × Ludwig III, King of Bayern
            |   |
            |   +-- Maria Beatrix Austria-Este (1824–1906)
            |       × Juan of Borbon, Comte de Montizon
            |       |
            |       +-- Carlos of Borbón, Duke de Madrid (1848–1909)
            |       +-- Alfonso Carlos of Borbon, Duke de San Jaime (1849–1936)
            +-- Ferdinand of Austria-Este (1781–1850), unmarried
            +-- Maximilian Joseph of Austria-Este (1782–1863)
            |   × Margretha Louw (1790–1850) m
            +-- Karl of Austria-Este (1785–1809), Archbishop of Esztergom
            +-- Maria Theresia of Austria-Este (1773–1832)
            |   × Vittorio Emanuele I of Savoy; had issue
            +-- Josepha of Austria-Este (1775–1777)
            +-- Maria-Leopoldine of Austria-Este (1776–1848)
            |   × Ludwig, Count of Arco; had issue
            +-- Maria Antonia (1784–1786)
            +-- Marie Ludovika of Austria-Este (1787–1816)
                × Franz II, Holy Roman Emperor

See also

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