A pious woman, only her strength of religion enabled her to bear the burdens of marriage to the notoriously womanizing "gorgeous Archduke". His frequent absences from his family helped her goal of keeping her children away from his bad influence succeed. Eventually, however, she herself entered into a relationship with the actor Otto Tressler, who had been presented to her by the emperor Franz Joseph, who felt sorry for her because of the adultery of her spouse. Maria Josepha often invited Tressler to her home; he sometimes met her husband and his friends in the doorway. When her husband died, her ability to avoid extravagant displays of grief was much admired. As a widow, she ended her relationship with Tressler, probably because of her sense of what was appropriate behaviour for a widow.
* also an infanta of Spain by marriage
** also a princess of Tuscany by marriage
*** also a princess of Modena by marriage
^also an archduchess of Austria in her own right
^^did not have a royal or noble title by birth