Mariano Hugo, Prince of Windisch-Graetz

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Mariano Hugo
Prince of Windisch-Graetz
Mariano Hugo of Windisch-Graetz.jpg
Head of House of Windisch-Graetz
Period 1976 – present
Predecessor Prince Maximilian Antonius
Heir Prince Maximilian Hugo
Born (1955-07-27) 27 July 1955 (age 62)
Spouse Sophie von Habsburg
Issue Prince Maximilian Hugo
Prince Alexis Ferdinando (deceased)
Princess Larissa Maria
House Windisch-Graetz
Father Maximilian Antonius, Prince zu Windisch-Graetz
Mother Maria Luisa Serra di Gerace
Religion Roman Catholic
Occupation Ambassador
Styles of
The Prince of Windisch-Graetz
Wappen Windisch-Grätz.svg
Reference style His Serene Highness[1] /
His Excellency
Spoken style Your Serene Highness /
Your Excellency
Alternative style Sir

Mariano Hugo, Prince of Windisch-Graetz (German: Mariano Hugo Fürst zu Windisch-Graetz, Italian: Mariano Ugo, Principe di Windisch-Graetz; born 27 July 1955) is the current head of the Austrian[1] or Italian[2] House of Windisch-Graetz. A former ambassador of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta (SMOM) to the Republic of Slovakia, he is currently SMOM's ambassador to Slovenia.[3]

Upbringing and family[edit]

Windisch-Graetz was born at Trieste[1] as the elder son of Maximilian Antonius, Prince zu Windisch-Graetz and Maria Luisa (Marlise) Serra di Gerace.[1] His mother was the legitimatised daughter of Gian Battista Serra, 12th Principe di Gerace by Donna Maria Grazia Carafa d'Andria.[2]

Windisch-Graetz was educated firstly in Rome at the school of the De La Salle Brothers and then in England at the University College of Buckingham, from which he graduated in 1975[4] with an Economics and Political Science degree.[5]

When his father died in 1976, Windisch-Graetz succeeded as head of a cadet branch of the House of Windisch-Graetz,[1][6] a mediatised house whose members historically bear the style of Serene Highness.[1]

On 11 February 1990 in Salzburg, Austria, Windisch-Graetz married Archduchess Sophie Franziska of Austria, daughter of Archduke Ferdinand and Countess Helene zu Toerring-Jettenbach,[1][6] daughter of Princess Elizabeth of Greece and Denmark. The bride wore a Valentino wedding gown.[7]

The couple have had three children: Prince Maximilian Hugo, Prince Alexis Ferdinand (who died at Sant'Angelo d'Alife in a car accident in 2010),[8] and Princess Larissa Maria Grazia Helen Leontina Maria Luisa.[1] Windisch-Graetz and his family reside in Italy when he is not abroad on diplomatic appointment, maintaining a home in Rome and Il Palazzo in Sant'Angelo d'Alife.[1]

Activities and appointments[edit]

The business activities of Windisch-Graetz include the food production industry, notably biscuits and mozzarella cheese, and entrepreneurial finance.[2] In the early 1990s, he was a major shareholder in the Banco di Napoli and a holding company, Sogesco, of which he owned 82%, was capitalised at 10 billion lire.[9]

On 19 December 1987, Pope John Paul II appointed Windisch-Graetz a Gentleman of His Holiness,[10] a role which entails meeting visiting heads of state and ambassadors and escorting them to meet the pope.[11] He is also a Knight of Honour and Devotion in Obedience of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta.[1]

In 2003, Windisch-Graetz was appointed Ambassador of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta to the Republic of Slovakia;[12] this appointment was renewed in 2006, until December 2009. In March 2009, he was appointed Ambassador of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta to the Republic of Slovenia.[13]

Honours and awards[edit]


Serra di Gerace family tree
  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Genealogisches Handbuch des Adels, Fürstliche Häuser XIX, "Windisch-Graetz" (Limburg an der Lahn: C.A. Starke, 2011), 431, 434–436.
  2. ^ a b c Les Manuscrits du CEDRE V, Le Royaume d'Italie I. Cercle d'Etudes des Dynasties Royales Europėennes (CEDRE), Paris, 1992, ISSN 0993-3964 p. 196-197
  3. ^ Embassy of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta to the Republic of Slovenia
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ a b Willis, Daniel. The Descendants of Louis XIII, Chapter 6: The Imperial Family of Austria (Clearfield Co., 1999), 508–509.
  7. ^ Order of Splendor: Valentino Gowns
  8. ^ "Nel Casertano Funerali Secondogenito del Principe d'Hasburg", Agenzia Nazionale Stampa Associata (11 February 2010)
  9. ^ "Grandi Battaglie tra ricchezza e nobilta", (in Italian), Corriere della Sera, 19 February 1994 (accessed 29 April 2011)
  10. ^ Annuario Pontificio 2011 (Città del Vaticano: Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 2011), 2320.
  11. ^ Hyginus Eugene Cardinale, The Holy See and the International Order (Gerrards Cross: Colin SMythe, 1976), 208.
  12. ^ Grand Master Greets the President of the Republic of Slovakia Archived 6 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  13. ^ Presentation of the Letters of Credentials
  14. ^ a b Leadership of the Savoy Orders Archived 25 April 2012 at the Wayback Machine.