Maria Anna of Spain
Maria Anna of Spain (18 August 1606 – 13 May 1646), Infanta of Spain, the youngest daughter of King Philip III of Spain and Margaret of Austria, was Holy Roman Empress and Queen of Hungary and Bohemia as the wife of Ferdinand III, Holy Roman Emperor.
Maria Anna, Archduchess of Austria, Infanta of Spain was a younger sister of Anne of Austria, queen consort of Louis XIII of France, and mother of Mariana of Austria, queen consort of Philip IV of Spain. She was also an older sister of Cardinal-Infante Ferdinand.
In the early 1620s, James I of England envisioned Maria Anna as a possible bride for his son and heir, the future Charles I of England and Scotland. Charles even visited Madrid to meet the young Maria Anna. In English history, this possible marriage is known as the Spanish Match. Negotiations failed, however, as Maria Anna did not wish to marry a Protestant and Charles would not convert to Catholicism. Charles eventually married Henrietta Maria of France.
On 20 February 1631, Maria Anna ceremonially married her first cousin, the future Ferdinand III, then the titular king of Hungary, who later would become the Holy Roman Emperor. The princess traveled from Spain to Austria through Italy, a dangerous journey during the Thirty Years' War. The trip would take 14 months to complete and about a month before its completion, when she had reached Trieste on 26 January 1631, Maria Anna had been married to Ferdinand by proxy, with her brother-in-law, Bishop Leopold Wilhelm of Strassburg, Passau, and Halberstadt serving as the proxy.
The second marriage ceremony, with Ferdinand present, was celebrated in Vienna, with festivities lasting a month. The marriage was described as friendly. Maria Anna was described as happy-tempered, friendly, and intelligent, and she able to ease the feelings of the melancholic emperor. She was active politically and acted as the adviser of her spouse. She was his regent during his absence and followed him on his travels.
Ferdinand and Maria Anna had six children:
- Ferdinand IV of Hungary (8 September 1633 – 9 July 1654)
- Mariana of Austria (22 December 1634 – 16 May 1696), who married her maternal uncle Philip IV of Spain
- Philip August, Archduke of Austria (15 July 1637 – 22 June 1639)
- Maximilian Thomas, Archduke of Austria (21 December 1638 – 29 June 1639)
- Leopold I, Holy Roman Emperor (9 June 1640 – 5 May 1705)
- Maria, Archduchess of Austria (13 May 1646)
During the Thirty Years' War, the imperial family moved hastily to Linz where, after a fever and heavy bleeding, Maria died of poisoning during her last pregnancy on 13 May 1646. The child she was carrying, also named Maria, was born alive by caesarean section, but died soon afterward. Mother and daughter were buried together in a single coffin.
|Ancestors of Maria Anna of Spain|
- Media related to Maria Anna of Spain at Wikimedia Commons
Maria Anna of SpainBorn: 18 August 1606 Died: 13 May 1646
|Empress of the Holy Roman Empire
German Queen, Archduchess consort of Austria
Title next held byMaria Leopoldine of Austria
|Queen consort of Hungary and Bohemia
Title next held byMargaret Theresa of Spain