Otto von Habsburg

Otto von Habsburg


Otto von Habsburg, also known by his royal name as Archduke Otto of Austria, was the last Crown Prince of Austria-Hungary from 1916 until the dissolution of the empire in 1918, a realm which comprised modern-day Austria, Hungary, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, and parts of Italy, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Serbia and Ukraine.… Read More

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1912 Birth Otto was born at Villa Wartholz in Reichenau an der Rax, Austria-Hungary. He was baptised Franz Joseph Otto Robert Maria Anton Karl Max Heinrich Sixtus Xavier Felix Renatus Ludwig Gaetan Pius Ignatius on 25 November 1912 at Villa Wartholz by the Prince-Archbishop of Vienna, Cardinal Franz Xaver Nagl. … Read More
1916 3 Years Old In November 1916, Otto became Crown Prince of Austria, Hungary, Bohemia and Croatia when his father, Archduke Charles, acceded to the throne. … Read More
1922 9 Years Old Otto's family spent the subsequent years in Switzerland, and on the Portuguese island of Madeira, where Charles died prematurely in 1922, leaving the 9-year-old Otto pretender to the throne. … Read More


1931 18 Years Old He continued to enjoy considerable public support in Austria; from 1931 to 1938, 1,603 Austrian municipalities named Otto an honorary citizen.


1936 23 Years Old John Gunther believed that Zita was less popular among Austrians, however, writing in 1936 that "restoration would be a good deal closer if Otto's return would not mean also the return of his mother—to say nothing of hundreds of assorted and impoverished Habsburg cousins and aunts, who would flock to Vienna like ants to a keg of syrup". … Read More
1938 25 Years Old He strongly opposed the Anschluss, and in 1938 requested Austrian Chancellor Kurt Schuschnigg to resist Nazi Germany. … Read More
1940 27 Years Old …  For his own safety, Otto left the European continent for the United States and lived from 1940 to 1944 in Washington, D.C. In 1941, Hitler personally revoked the citizenship of Otto, his mother and his siblings, and the imperial-royal family found themselves stateless. … Read More


1946 33 Years Old …  As he did not possess a passport and was effectively stateless, he was given a passport of the Principality of Monaco, thanks to the intervention of Charles de Gaulle in 1946. … Read More
1951 38 Years Old He married Princess Regina of Saxe-Meiningen on May 10, 1951 at the Church of Saint-François-des-Cordeliers in Nancy, capital city of Lorraine. … Read More


1956 43 Years Old On 8 May 1956, Otto was recognized as an Austrian citizen by the provincial government of Lower Austria.
1957 44 Years Old The Austrian Interior Ministry approved this declaration of Citizenship, but on the condition that he accept the name Dr. Otto Habsburg-Lothringen, on 8 February 1957. … Read More
1958 45 Years Old Otto had already submitted a written statement, on 21 February 1958, that he and his family would renounce all privileges formerly entitled a member of the House of Habsburg, but this first declaration did not satisfy the requirements of the Habsburg Law, which stated that Otto and other descendants of Charles could only return to Austria if they renounced all royal claims and accepted the status of private citizens.
In a declaration dated 31 May 1961, Otto renounced all claims to the Austrian throne and proclaimed himself "a loyal citizen of the republic", a move that he made only after much hesitation and certainly "for purely practical reasons".


1963 50 Years Old The Austrian administrative court found on 24 May 1963 that Otto's statement was sufficient to meet this requirement.
1965 52 Years Old His wife and he were then issued a Certified Proof of Citizenship on 20 July 1965. … Read More
1966 53 Years Old It was only on 1 June 1966, after the People's Party won an outright majority in the national election, that Otto was issued an Austrian passport, and was finally able to visit his home country again on 31 October 1966 for the first time in 48 years. … Read More
1967 54 Years Old Later, he visited Vienna on 5 July 1967.


1973 60 Years Old An early advocate of a unified Europe, Otto was president of the International Paneuropean Union from 1973 to 2004.
Otto von Habsburg was Vice President (1957–1973) and President (1973–2004) of the International Paneuropean Union, and served as a Member of the European Parliament for the Christian Social Union of Bavaria (CSU) from 1979 to 1999.
1989 - 2000 2 More Events
2002 89 Years Old In 2002, he was named the first ever honorary member of the European People's Party group.
2007 94 Years Old In a 2007 interview on the occasion of his approaching 95th birthday, Otto stated:
2008 95 Years Old On the 2008 anniversary of the Anschluss, Otto von Habsburg made a very controversial statement, as part of his "1938 Remembrance Day" address before Parliament that "there is no country in Europe that has a better claim to be a victim of the Nazis than Austria". … Read More
2010 97 Years Old After the death of his wife, Regina in 2010, Otto stopped appearing in public.
Otto's son, Karl von Habsburg, also defended his father's words, in a 2011 statement, stating that "there were guilty parties in practically every country".
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