Kedvelj minket a Facebookon!



The meeting of the fifteen-year-old Elisabeth and the twenty-three-year-old Franz Joseph took place at a fashionable resort, Bad Ischl on 16th August in 1853. Ludovica and her daughters arrived one and a half hour later than expected, in addition, the carriage delivering their clothes was fallen behind with their maids so they could not change their dresses.

Ludovica, Helene and Sisi were wearing mourning dresses because of the death of an aunt. The simple, highly closed black dress fitted Sisi perfectly but Helene seemed to be too strict in that. According to many, it also played a role in the Emperor’s choice, and that is why his marriage proposal was made so quickly...

Duchess Helene (left) - Sophie’s choice; and Duchess Elisabeth (right) - the Emperor’s choice


Archduchess Sophie’s maid, while preparing Helene’s hairdo, was delighted by the charming Sisi, who braided her own long blondish brown hair herself. The cousins first met at Sophie's lounge. According to one of Elisabeth’s first bibliographer, Count Corti, Nene was a beautiful, tall and slender phenomenon but there was something like hardness and fortitude in her personality, which was enhanced by her embarrassment. However, Sisi behaved completely at ease.

Franz Joseph’s mother was the aunt of Helene and Sisi. Consequently, his future bride was his first cousin. Today we would be startled if anything like that happened. However, that time it was quite common in the European royal courts. Though, not only the Bavarian King’s but also the Pope’s permission was needed before the marriage.


Carl Piloty and Franz Adam: Elisabeth in front of Possenhofen Palace 1853

Possenhofen, the reception of Archduchess Sophie’ s letter


Sophia’s letter was very much welcome in Possenhofen. Ludovica was enthusiastic and Helen too. For several weeks Ludovica was preparing to get Helene (Nene) ready for being the fiancée of the Emperor. Not only Nene and her mother, but also her father, Duke Maximilian was invited by Archduchess Sophie but he refused to go and excused himself. A question can emerge: Would the Duke’s favourite daughter have been engaged so fast if her father had been there?

To be continued: THE COTILLION - "I think I was dancing with our future Empress"

THE SURPRISING REASON - Helen was chosen as a bride. So why did Ludovica take Sisi to Bad Ischl?




Follow us on Facebook: Empress Elisabeth

Works cited:
Brigitte Hamann: Erzsébet királyné. Európa Könyvkiadó, 2012
Gróf Corti Egon: Erzsébet. Révai Kiadás, Budapest, 1935
Jean des Cars: Sisi avagy a végzet. Magyar Könyvklub, Budapest, 2001
Soós István: Sisi és családja. Erzsébet, a magyarok királynéja. Rubicon, Budapest, 2001

Fénykép: johnomason via / CC BY