2 September 1941 |
|Spouse||Archduke Leopold Franz of Austria (1965-1981)
|Issue||Archduke Sigismund, Grand Duke of Tuscany
Archduke Guntram of Austria
|House||House of Habsburg-Lorraine (by marriage)|
|Father||Henri, Marquis de Belzunce|
|Mother||Marie-Thérèse de la Poëze d'Harambure|
Laetitia d'Arenberg, formerly Lætitia Marie Madelaine Susanne Valentine de Belzunce d'Arenberg, was born on September 2, 1941 in Brummana, Mandate of Lebanon now Lebanon. She is a French Uruguayan businesswoman.
She is a daughter of Henri de Belzunce, Marquis de Belzunce, and Marie-Thérèse de la Poëze d'Harambure, members of the historical French nobility by birth. Her father was an officer in the Moroccan Tirailleurs and died fighting for France at the Battle of Monte Cassino, on May 13, 1944. He belonged to a family of ancient nobility in France, originally from Lower Navarre, who held the seigneurie of Belzunce near Bayonne, where the family was notable since the 12th century, and had received the Honneurs de la Cour at Paris in 1739.
On August 20, 1949 her mother was remarried, to Prince Erik Engelbert, 11th Duke of Arenberg. In 1951, she moved with her family to Uruguay because her family feared expansion of the Korean War to Europe. On 15 February 1956 Laetitia and her brother, Rodrigue, were adopted by her step-father, Prince Erik Engelbert. Although the adoption did not entitle her to use or inherit his family's dynastic titles and styles of prince, duke and Serene Highness, her legal surname became "de Belzunce d'Arenberg", and she became one of the heirs to his personal fortune.
On June 19, 1965 she was married civilly to HIRH Archduke Leopold Franz of Austria-Tuscany at St. Gilgen, Austria, the religious nuptials followed on 28 July at Menetou-Salon, France Their first child, Archduke Sigismund of Austria-Tuscany, now head of the Tuscan Grand Ducal branch of the Imperial House of Habsburg, was born at Lausanne, Switzerland, on 21 April 1966. Their second child, Archduke Guntram Maria Josef of Austria-Tuscany, was born at Montevideo, Uruguay on 21 June 1967.
Laetitia and her husband divorced on 21 May 1981 at Salzburg, Austria. Leopold Franz moved to Europe, remarried a commoner in June 1993 (and was again divorced in 1998), renouncing his headship of the House of Tuscany in favor of his and Laetitia's elder son on 12 April 1994, while Laetitia remained in Uruguay. Some years later she was remarried, to John Anson.
She is the owner of many companies, including Las Rosas, Simoca (Lapataia), Liderak (Mondial/Juki motorcycle importer), Bor (Mitsubishi Motors and Great Wall Motor automobiles importer), Nimansur (JAC Motors trucks importer), and others.
By decree of the President of the French Republic, Nicolas Sarkozy, on April 10, 2009, Laetitia of Arenberg was accorded the medal of the Legion of Honor in the grade of Knight (Chevalier). This distinction was awarded in recognition of her 30 years of professional success which encompassed commitment to numerous social projects in Uruguay, particularly to benefit disadvantaged children and young people addicted to drugs. The official award ceremony occurred on 24 September, sponsored by a French Senate delegation during an official visit to Uruguay, led by Senator Jean-Marc Pastor, accompanied by Senators Rémy Pointereau, François Fortassin, Gérard Miquel and Annie Jarraud-Vergnolle.
- Uruguayan people
- House of Arenberg
- French Uruguayan
- Remise de la Légion d'Honneur à SAS Princesse Laetitia d’Arenberg (24 septembre 2009).
- Genealogisches Handbuch des Adels, Fürstliche Häuser XVI. "Haus Österreich". C.A. Starke Verlag, 2001, p.103. ISBN 3-7980-0824-8.
- Velde, François. "Nobility and Titles in France". Heraldica.org. Retrieved 2016-11-24.
- Enache, Nicolas. La Descendance de Marie-Therese de Habsburg, Reine de Hongrie et de Bohême. ICC, Paris, 1996. pp. 121, 131. in French.
- de Badts de Cugnac, Chantal. Coutant de Saisseval, Guy. Le Petit Gotha. Nouvelle Imprimerie Laballery, Paris 2002, p. 702 (French) ISBN 2-9507974-3-1