Franz Joseph II, Prince of Liechtenstein
|Francis Joseph II|
Franz Joseph II official portrait
|Prince of Liechtenstein|
|Reign||25 July 1938 – 13 November 1989|
|Spouse||Countess Georgina von Wilczek|
|Issue||Hans-Adam II, Prince of Liechtenstein
|House||House of Liechtenstein|
|Father||Prince Aloys of Liechtenstein|
|Mother||Archduchess Elisabeth Amalie of Austria|
16 August 1906|
|Died||13 November 1989
|Burial||St. Florian Cathedral,
Franz Joseph II, Prince of Liechtenstein (Franz Josef Maria Aloys Alfred Karl Johannes Heinrich Michael Georg Ignaz Benediktus Gerhardus Majella; 16 August 1906 – 13 November 1989) was the Sovereign Prince of Liechtenstein from 1938 until his death.
Franz Joseph was the son of Prince Aloys of Liechtenstein and Archduchess Elisabeth Amalie of Austria. He succeeded his childless great-uncle, Prince Franz I, after his father renounced his right of succession in his favour in 1923.
During his reign women received voting rights for the first time, following a referendum on the topic (among men only) in 1984.
Franz Joseph was an extremely popular sovereign in Liechtenstein. He was the first ruling prince to live full-time in the principality. He also oversaw the economic development of Liechtenstein from a poor agricultural backwater into one of the richest countries (per capita) in the world.
World War II
Liechtenstein remained neutral throughout World War II, and its neutrality was never violated by any of the combatants. However, in 2005, it was revealed that Jewish labourers from the Strasshof concentration camp, provided by the SS, had worked on estates in Austria owned by Liechtenstein's Princely House.
Marriage and children
- Hans-Adam II, Prince of Liechtenstein (born 14 February 1945, Zurich), married Countess Marie Aglaë of Wchinitz and Tettau and had four children.
- Prince Philipp Erasmus of Liechtenstein (full name: Prince Philipp Erasmus Alois Ferdinand Maria Sebaldus, born 19 August 1946, Zürich). Married in Brussels on 11 September 1971 Isabelle Fernande Ghislaine Guillemette Elisabeth de L'Arbre de Malander (born 24 November 1947, Ronse), daughter of Jean Baptiste de L'Arbre de Malander and wife Guillemette Grassal. Together, they have 3 sons:
- Prince Alexander Wilhelm Hans Adam of Liechtenstein (born 19 May 1972, Basel). Married civilly in Vaduz on 24 January 2003 and religiously in Salzburg on 8 February 2003 Astrid Barbara Kohl (born 13 September 1968, Regensburg), daughter of Theodor Kohl and wife Ingrid Schlechta. They had one daughter:
- Prince Wenzeslaus of Liechtenstein (born 12 May 1974, Uccle). He used to date model Adriana Lima.
- Prince Rudolf Ferdinand of Liechtenstein (b. Uccle, 7 September 1975). Married in Istanbul on 20 April 2012 Miss Tilsim Tanberk.
- Prince Nikolaus of Liechtenstein (born 24 October 1947, Zurich), married Princess Margaretha of Luxembourg, and had four children.
- Princess Nora of Liechtenstein (born 31 October 1950, Zurich), married in Vaduz civilly on 10 June 1988 and religiously on 11 June 1988 Vicente Sartorius y Cabeza de Vaca, 3rd Marqués de Mariño (Madrid, 30 November 1931 – Ibiza, 22 June 2002), and had an only daughter:
- Doña María Teresa Sartorius y de Liechtenstein (b. Madrid, 21 November 1992).
- Prince Franz Josef of Liechtenstein (Zurich, 19 November 1962 – Vaduz, 28 February 1991).
Franz Joseph handed over most of his powers to his son, Hans-Adam, on 26 August 1984. Franz Joseph II died on 13 November 1989, a mere twenty-six days after his wife. Ruling Liechtenstein for 51 years, he was the longest-ruling sovereign in Europe at the time of his death.
- National honour
- Liechtenstein: Sovereign Knight Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Principality of Liechtenstein
- Foreign honours
- Greek Royal Family: Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Redeemer
- Holy See: Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre
- Iranian Imperial family: Recipient of the Commemorative Medal of the 2, 500th Anniversary of the Persian Empire
- BBC, "Nazi crimes taint Liechtenstein" 14 April, 2005 Access date: 3 April 2007.
- Principality of Liechtenstein
- "Reply to a parliamentary question" (PDF) (in German). p. 231. Retrieved 13 October 2012.
- Wedding of Juan Carlos of Spain and Sophia of Greece
- Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem
Franz Joseph II, Prince of LiechtensteinBorn: 16 August 1906 Died: 13 November 1989
|Prince of Liechtenstein