The End of the Habsburgs: The Decline and Fall of the Austrian Monarchy

Author(s): John Van der Kiste 

ISBN: 9781781557709
$23.00 $33.00
A comprehensive study of the Habsburg monarchy that witnessed the fall of empires and a post-war Europe.
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  • A fully detailed look at the Austrian Habsburg dynasty from the Napoleonic era to the 21st century

  • Sixteen pages of obscure historical photographs, some rarely seen previously

  • Particular focus on the lives and reigns of the Emperors Ferdinand, Francis Joseph and Charles, and the career of the latter’s son Crown Prince Otto

  • A companion volume to the author’s much-acclaimed The End of the German Monarchy: The Decline and Fall of the Hohenzollerns

In 1806, the Holy Roman Empire ceased to exist as Francis II proclaimed himself Emperor of Austria. The Habsburg empire came to an end 112 years later after defeat in the First World War.

The Austrian monarchy, later the Austro-Hungarian monarchy, had survived several tribulations. During the year of revolutions in 1848, the much-loved but incompetent Emperor Ferdinand – a victim of chronic inbreeding – abdicated in favour of his young nephew Francis Joseph.

His reign of almost 68 years was marked by defeat in wars with France, Italy and Prussia, family tragedies and scandals, including the appointment of his brother Maximilian as Emperor of Mexico and subsequent execution, the suicide of his son Crown Prince Rudolf, and the assassinations of his wife Empress Elizabeth and nephew Francis Ferdinand.

His death in 1916 was followed by the succession of his great-nephew Charles who was forced to abdicate in 1918 and died after two unsuccessful attempts to regain the throne of Hungary; however, his eldest son Otto retained a major presence as head of the family and Member of the European Parliament for twenty years.

Beautifully illustrated, The End of the Habsburgs: The Decline and Fall of the Austrian Monarchy looks at the last century of the Habsburgs, from the Napoleonic era and the nineteenth century to the fall of the European empires, the age of the dictators and post-war Europe.

BOOK ISBN 9781781557709
FORMAT 234 x 156 mm
BINDING Hardback
PAGES 208 pages
PUBLICATION DATE 05 December 2019
ILLUSTRATIONS 48 black-and-white illustrations



John Van der Kiste has published over forty books including works on royal and historical biography, local history, true crime, music and fiction, and is a contributor to the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. His previous titles include Queen Victoria’s Children, Kaiser Wilhelm II and The Romanovs: Tsar Alexander II of Russia and his Family. He lives in Devon.