Archduke Wilhelm Franz of Austria

Archduke Wilhelm Franz Karl of Austria-Teschen (German: Erzherzog Wilhelm Franz Karl von Habsburg-Lothringen, 21 April 1827 – 29 April 1894) was an Archduke of Austria from the House of Habsburg.

He was born in Vienna as the son of Archduke Charles, Duke of Teschen (1771–1847) and Princess Henrietta of Nassau-Weilburg (1797–1829). He was a grandson of Leopold II (1747–1792) and nephew of Franz II (1768–1835), the last two Holy Roman Emperors.

He held the office of Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights from 1863 until his death in 1894. He gained the rank of Feldzeugmeister in the service of the Austrian Army in January 1867, after commanding the artillery and being wounded at the Battle of Königgrätz (1866). He was Governor of the Federal Fortress of Mainz.

Archduke Wilhelm of Austria died unmarried and without issue on 29 July 1894 in Weikersdorf after falling from a horse. He had been riding in Baden when his horse was frightened by a motor car. The horse bolted, and the Archduke was thrown. One of his feet remained stuck in the stirrup, and he was dragged more than 100 yards. He died without regaining consciousness. His death was attributed to a concussion on the brain. The archduke was 67 years old.

Archduke Wilhelm Franz
Wilhelm Franz Karl Austria 1827 1894 photo1880
Born21 April 1827
Died29 April 1894 (aged 67)
FatherArchduke Charles, Duke of Teschen
MotherPrincess Henrietta of Nassau-Weilburg


Imperial Monogram of Archduke Wilhelm Franz of Austria
Imperial Monogram of Archduke Wilhelm Franz of Austria

Further reading

  • Constantin von Wurzbach: Habsburg, Wilhelm Franz Karl. In: Biographisches Lexikon des Kaiserthums Oesterreich. 7. Theil. Kaiserlich-königliche Hof- und Staatsdruckerei, Wien 1861, pp. 155.
  • Oscar Criste: Wilhelm (Erzherzog von Österreich). In: Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie (ADB). Vol.55, Duncker & Humblot, Leipzig 1910, p. 91–93.
  • Antonio Schmidt-Brentano: Die k. k. bzw. k. u. k. Generalität 1816–1918, österreichisches Staatsarchiv
  • Johannes Ressel: Kirchen und Kapellen, religiöse Gedenksäulen und Wegzeichen in Baden bei Wien. Ein Beitrag zur Geschichte, Heimatkunde und Kunstgeschichte. 2., verbesserte und erweiterte Auflage. Grasl, Baden 1982, ISBN 3-85098-131-2.

External links

Grand Master of the Teutonic Order
Preceded by
Archduke Maximilian of Austria-Este
Succeeded by
Archduke Eugen of Austria
Archduke Eugen of Austria

Archduke Eugen Ferdinand Pius Bernhard Felix Maria of Austria-Teschen (21 May 1863 – 30 December 1954) was an Archduke of Austria and a Prince of Hungary and Bohemia. He was the last Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights from the Habsburg dynasty.

Archduke Wilhelm of Austria

Archduke Wilhelm Franz of Austria, later Wilhelm Franz von Habsburg-Lothringen (10 February 1895 – 18 August 1948), also known as Basil the Embroidered (Ukrainian: Василь Вишиваний, romanized: Vasyl Vyshyvani), was an Austrian archduke, a colonel of the Ukrainian Sich Riflemen, and a poet.


The Deutschmeister-Palais or Palais Erzherzog Wilhelm is a building in Vienna located at Parkring 8.

It was designed in the years 1864–1868 by the Danish-Austrian architect Theophil von Hansen (1813–1891) as a residence for Archduke Wilhelm Franz of Austria (1827–1894), who at that time was Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights (Deutschmeister). The building face includes statues by the Austrian sculptor Joseph Gasser von Valhorn.

From 1938 to 1945 it was the seat of the Viennese SS headquarters, then from 1945 to 1974 it served as the Federal Police Department in Vienna. Today it holds the offices of the OPEC Fund for International Development.

Grand Master of the Teutonic Order

The Grand Master (German: Hochmeister; Latin: Magister generalis) is the holder of the supreme office of the Teutonic Order. It is equivalent to the grand master of other military orders and the superior general in non-military Roman Catholic religious orders. Hochmeister, literally "high master", is only used in reference to the Teutonic Order, as Großmeister ("grand master") is used in German to refer to the leaders of other orders of knighthood.

An early version of the full title in Latin was Magister Hospitalis Sanctae Mariae Alemannorum Hierosolymitani. Since 1216, the full title Magister Hospitalis Domus Sanctae Mariae Teutonicorum Hierosolymitani ("Master of the Hospital House of the Blessed Virgin Mary of the Germans of Jerusalem") was used.

The offices of Hochmeister and Deutschmeister (Magister Germaniae) were united in 1525. The title of Magister Germaniae had been introduced in 1219 as the head of the bailiwicks in the Holy Roman Empire, from 1381 also those in Italy, raised to the rank of a prince of the Holy Roman Empire in 1494, but merged with the office of grand master under Walter von Cronberg in 1525, from which time the head of the order had the title of Hoch- und Deutschmeister.

List of Knights of the Golden Fleece

This page contains a list of Knights of the Order of the Golden Fleece.

Ancestors of Archduke Wilhelm Franz of Austria
16. Leopold, Duke of Lorraine
8. Francis I, Holy Roman Emperor
17. Princess Élisabeth Charlotte of Orléans
4. Leopold II, Holy Roman Emperor
18. Charles VI, Holy Roman Emperor
9. Maria Theresa of Austria
19. Princess Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel
2. Archduke Charles, Duke of Teschen
20. Philip V of Spain
10. Charles III of Spain
21. Princess Elisabeth of Parma
5. Infanta Maria Louise of Spain
22. Augustus III of Poland
11. Princess Maria Amalia of Saxony
23. Archduchess Maria Josepha of Austria
1. Archduke Wilhelm Franz of Austria
24. Charles August, Prince of Nassau-Weilburg
12. Charles Christian, Prince of Nassau-Weilburg
25. Princess Auguste Friederike of Nassau-Idstein
6. Frederick William, Prince of Nassau-Weilburg
26. William IV, Prince of Orange
13. Princess Carolina of Orange-Nassau
27. Anne, Princess Royal
3. Princess Henrietta of Nassau-Weilburg
28. Wilhelm Ludwig, Burgrave of Kirchberg
14. Wilhelm Georg, Burgrave of Kirchberg
29. Wild- and Rhinegravine Louise of Salm-Dhaun
7. Burgravine Louise Isabelle of Kirchberg
30. Heinrich XI, Prince Reuss of Greiz
15. Princess Isabella Auguste Reuss of Greiz
31. Countess Konradine Reuss of Köstritz
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