Paul I, Prince Esterházy

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Paul I
Esterházy pál.jpg
Count Esterházy of Galántha
Period16 August 1652 – 8 December 1687
Successorhimself as Prince
Prince Esterházy of Galántha
Period8 December 1687 – 26 March 1713
Predecessorhimself as Count
SuccessorMichael I
Born(1635-09-07)7 September 1635
Kismarton (Eisenstadt), Kingdom of Hungary
Died26 March 1713(1713-03-26) (aged 77)
Kismarton (Eisenstadt), Kingdom of Hungary
SpouseCountess Orsolya Esterházy of Galántha
Countess Éva Thököly of Késmárk
IssueSee below for issue
German: Paul
Hungarian: Pál
FatherNicholas, Count Esterházy of Galántha
MotherBaroness Krisztina Nyáry of Bedegh
ReligionRoman Catholic

Paul I, Prince Esterházy of Galántha[1][better source needed][2][3] (full German name: Paul Fürst Esterházy von Galantha; full Hungarian name: galánthai herceg Esterházy Pál) (8 September 1635[1][3] – 26 March 1713) was the first Prince Esterházy of Galántha from 1687 to 1713, Palatine of the Kingdom of Hungary from 1681 to 1713, and an Imperial Field Marshal.[1] Paul was also an accomplished poet, harpsichordist, and composer.[4] He actively participated in various battles against the Ottoman Turks during the Fourth Austro-Turkish War (1663–1664) and the Great Turkish War (1683–1699). Paul is credited with establishing the wealth, power, and influence of the Princely House of Esterházy.[3]

Family and early life[edit]

Born in Kismarton (Eisenstadt), Kingdom of Hungary, Paul was the third son of Nicholas, Count Esterházy of Galántha and his second wife Baroness Krisztina Nyáry of Bedegh.[1][2][5] His father, Nicholas, bore the office of the Palatine of the Kingdom of Hungary.[2]

Paul was raised in a deeply religious atmosphere and studied at Jesuit institutions in Graz and Nagyszombat.[3][6] He displayed literary talents at an early age.[7]

On 16 August 1652, Paul's elder brother Ladislaus was killed in the Battle of Vezekény (Vezekey) against the Turks.[1][2][3] Paul succeeded Ladislaus as Count Esterházy of Galántha and inherited the family's vast wealth and landholdings at the age of 17.[2]

Military career[edit]

Paul began his military career as early as 1663, and opposed the Turks in the battles of Austro-Turkish War (1663–1664) (e.g. siege of Novi Zrin in June 1664 and Battle of Saint Gotthard on 1 August 1664) under the leadership of Raimondo Montecuccoli.[5] Paul served with distinction under Montecuccoli alongside Miklós Zrínyi.[5] Paul served in the army with such distinction that he was appointed to the position of Field Marshal and Commander-in-chief of the Military Frontier of southern Kingdom of Hungary beginning in 1667 at the age of 30.[3][5][7][8][9] While serving as a commander-in-chief, Paul defeated malcontents at Leutschau and Győr.[5] Paul's troops were among the coalition that was raised for the Battle of Vienna in 1683.[3][5] After the deliverance of Vienna from the Turks, Paul entered Buda in 1686 at the head of 20,000 men.[5] Throughout his military career, Paul led the Hungarian side of the Habsburg army into battle against the Ottoman Turks a total of 16 times.[2][5]

Paul throughout his life remained loyal to the Habsburgs, and therefore was not involved in the conspiracy of the Hungarian nobility in the 1670s.[2][5] This loyalty was rewarded by the Habsburgs in 1681, when Paul was appointed to the position of Palatine of the Kingdom of Hungary.[2][5][7] The wars with the Turks did not go unnoticed by the Esterházy family, because the advance of the Turks to Vienna devastated many of the family's lands and brought slaughter to many of the lands' residents.[3]

In 1681, Paul was made a Knight of the Austrian Order of the Golden Fleece.[2][6] On 8 December 1687, Leopold I, Holy Roman Emperor issued a princely diploma elevating Paul to a Prince of the Holy Roman Empire for his military successes against the Turks during the reconquest of Hungary and his loyalty to the House of Habsburg.[3][5][7][9][10] The title of Prince was extended to his male descendants in 1712.[3][5] On 9 December 1687, in his role as Palatine, Paul placed the Crown of Saint Stephen on the head of Archduke Joseph of Austria (later Joseph I, Holy Roman Emperor) as the first Habsburg hereditary king of Hungary.[10] As an ally of the Habsburgs, Paul had as one of his principal concerns the recatholicization of those areas of Central Europe "infected" by Protestantism.[11] Paul's loyalty was also demonstrated in his cooperation with the Habsburg court in the subversion of civil and religious liberties.[7]

In 1703, Paul again fought with the Habsburgs in the wars with the Kuruc, armed anti-Habsburg Hungarian rebels in Royal Hungary.

From 1711 until his death, Paul served as Lord Lieutenant of Moson County.[6]

Building efforts[edit]

Paul converted Schloss Esterházy in Eisenstadt from a medieval castle into a Baroque palace.[12] Paul began his renovations of Schloss Esterházy in 1663.[3][9][13] The additions made by Paul took nearly ten years to complete and gave the palace the façade it has retained to the present.

Paul further extended, ornamented, and fortified Forchtenstein Castle with architect Domenico Carlone.[10] At Forchtenstein Castle, Paul founded the Esterházy family's treasure house and created an extensive portrait gallery of Esterházy family ancestors.[10]

Musical career[edit]

Paul was an accomplished musical amateur, composer, and patron of the arts.[4][5][7][9] He composed numerous cantatas, the most notable of which are Harmonia Caelestis.[11] Harmonia Caelestis is a cycle of 55 sacred cantatas composed in the Baroque style published in Vienna in 1711.[11] Paul was one of the chief compilers of the Trophaeum Domus Inclytae Estorationae.[5]

Paul used his great wealth in the liberal patronage of art and literature.[7] He founded the Esterházy private chapel, famous for its solo singers, chorus, and orchestra.[9]

Marriage and issue[edit]

Paul shortly after his elevation to Prince Esterházy of Galántha.

Paul was married twice.[1][2] He married first to his niece[1] Countess Orsolya Esterházy of Galántha, daughter of his brother Count István Esterházy of Galántha and his wife Countess Erzsébet Thurzó of Bethlenfalva, on 7 February 1652 in Eisenstadt.[1] Paul's marriage to his eldest brother's daughter was done in part to prevent the division of the Esterházy family's property[2] Paul and Orsolya had nineteen children:[1]

  • Prince Miklós Antal Esterházy of Galántha (1655–1695)[1]
  • Count Pál Esterházy of Galántha (1657–1664)[1]
  • Countess Katalin Esterházy of Galántha (1659–1664)[1]
  • Count István József Esterházy of Galántha (1660–1669)[1]
  • Prince László Ignac Esterházy of Galántha (1662–1689)[1]
  • Princess Krisztina Esterházy of Galántha (1663–1732)[1]
  • Count Elek Domokos Esterházy of Galántha (1664–1673)[1]
  • Count Ferenc Agoston Esterházy of Galántha (1666–1673)[1]
  • Countess Ilona Esterházy of Galántha (1667–1681)[1]
  • Count János Benedek Esterházy of Galántha (1668–1683)[1]
  • Princess Orsolya Esterházy of Galántha (1670–after 1696)[1]
  • Mihály I, 2nd Prince Esterházy of Galántha (1671–1721)[1]
  • Count György Bernat Esterházy of Galántha (1672–1672)[1]
  • Prince Gábor Esterházy of Galántha (1673–1704)[1]
  • Count Pál Esterházy of Galántha (1675–1683)[1]
  • Princess Anna Julia Esterházy of Galántha (1676–1700)[1]
  • Count Imre Esterházy of Galántha (1677–1677)[1]
  • Princess Anna Terézia Esterházy of Galántha (1679–after 1692)[1]
  • Prince Adam Esterházy of Galántha (1680–1720)[1]

After the death of his first wife, Paul married Countess Éva Thököly of Késmárk, daughter of István, Count Thököly of Késmárk and his wife Mária Gyulaffy of Rátót.[1] Paul and Éva had the following children:[1]

  • Count István Esterházy of Galántha (1683–1683)[1]
  • Princess Mária Terézia Anna Esterházy of Galántha (1684–1755)[1]
  • Princess Katalin Roza Esterházy of Galántha (1685–1686)[1]
  • Princess Franziska Jozefa Esterházy of Galántha (1686–1688)[1]
  • József I Simon Antal, 3rd Prince Esterházy of Galántha (1688–1721)[1]
  • Prince Tamas Ignac Esterházy of Galántha (1689–1689)[1]
  • Prince Zsigmond Lipot Esterházy of Galántha (1692–1693)[1]

Charitable acts[edit]

In 1671, he rescued some 3,000 Jews who had been expelled by Leopold I, Holy Roman Emperor from Vienna. This led to their resettlement as tenant farmers and the founding of the Seven Municipalities (German: Siebengemeinden) on Esterházy lands throughout Western Hungary, present-day Burgenland.[14]

Death and legacy[edit]

Family Tree of the Princes Esterházy of Galántha

Paul died in Eisenstadt on 26 March 1713.[1][2][3] To secure his fortune, Paul founded the Austrian model of the fee tail and settled his successor in his will through the establishment of two primogeniture lines for his sons Michael and Joseph.[2] In his will, Paul left his sons Michael and Joseph two estates which were meant to remain separate, but were rejoined under Joseph's ownership in 1721.[2][3]

Paul was interred in the Esterházy family crypt at the Franziskanerkirche in the Franciscan Monastery in Eisenstadt.[2]

Most of the Princely House of Esterházy's landholdings were acquired during Paul's reign as head of the family, but his lands incurred debts totaling 1,311,733 florins by 1711.[15]




  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al Marek, Miroslav. "Esterházy de Galántha family". GENEALOGY.EU. Archived from the original on 28 January 2010. Retrieved 23 February 2010.[self-published source]
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p Esterházy Betriebe GmbH. "I. Pál herceg (1635–1713)". Esterházy Betriebe GmbH. Archived from the original on 18 September 2009. Retrieved 23 February 2010.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Austrian Ministry of Education, Science, and Culture. "Esterházy, Paul I. Fürst". AEIOU Project. Archived from the original on 5 June 2011. Retrieved 23 February 2010.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  4. ^ a b Arnold, Denis (1983). The New Oxford Companion to Music, Volume 1. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-311316-3.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Bain, Robert Nisbet (1911). "Esterházy of Galántha s.v. Pál" . In Chisholm, Hugh (ed.). Encyclopædia Britannica. Vol. 9 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 794.
  6. ^ a b c d Kvintesszencia Kiadó. "HERCEG ESTERHÁZY PÁL". Kvintesszencia Kiadó. Archived from the original on 21 April 2009. Retrieved 23 February 2010.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g Thomas, Joseph (1901). Universal Pronouncing Dictionary of Biography and Mythology, Volume 1. J.B. Lippincott Company.
  8. ^ Encyclopædia Britannica, 1988 edition, article "Eszterházy"
  9. ^ a b c d e Hadden, J.Cuthbert (2004). Haydn. Kessinger Publishing. ISBN 1-4191-2295-9.
  10. ^ a b c d Dwight, John Sullivan (1877). Dwight's journal of music, Volumes 35–36. D.L. Balch.
  11. ^ a b c Jones, David Wyn (2006). Music in Eighteenth-Century Austria. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0-521-02859-0.
  12. ^ "General". Schloss Esterházy Official website. Archived from the original on 25 June 2009. Retrieved 24 May 2009.
  13. ^ High fidelity, Volume 33, Issues 6–12. 1983.
  14. ^ Gates-Coon, Rebecca (1994). The Landed Estates of the Esterházy Princes: Hungary During the Reforms of Maria Theresia and Joseph II. Johns Hopkins University Press. ISBN 0-8018-4785-0.
  15. ^ Hitchins, Keith (1981). Studies in East European social history, Volume 2. Brill Archive. ISBN 90-04-06386-2.


  • Bain, Robert Nisbet (1911). "Esterházy of Galántha" . In Chisholm, Hugh (ed.). Encyclopædia Britannica. Vol. 09 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. pp. 794–795, see third para. His third son Pál [Paul] (1635–1713), prince palatine...
  • Markó László: A Magyar Állam Főméltóságai Szent Istvántól napjainkig. Magyar életrajzi lexikon (Magyar Könyvklub, 2000) ISBN 963-547-085-1
  • Csorba Csaba – Estók János – Salamon Konrád: Magyarország képes története (Magyar Könyvklub, 1998) ISBN 963-548-961-7

External links[edit]


Media related to Paul I, 1st Prince Esterházy of Galántha at Wikimedia Commons


Paul I, Prince Esterházy
Born: 8 September 1635 Died: 26 March 1713
Hungarian nobility
Preceded by Count Esterházy of Galántha
16 August 1652 – 8 December 1687
Succeeded by
himself as Prince
Preceded by
himself as Count
Prince Esterházy of Galántha
8 December 1687 – 26 March 1713
Succeeded by
Political offices
Preceded by
Juraj Frankopan
Master of the household
1661 – 13 June 1681
Succeeded by
Ivan Drašković
Preceded by Palatine of Hungary
13 June 1681 – 26 March 1713
Succeeded by