Robert, Archduke of Austria-Este

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Archduke of Austria-Este, Prince Imperial of Austria, Prince Royal of Hungary, Bohemia and Croatia
Armoiries Autriche-Este 1914.svg
Archduke of Austria-Este
Tenure 16 April 1917 – 7 February 1996
Spouse Princess Margherita of Savoy-Aosta
Issue Archduchess Maria Beatrice
Archduke Lorenz
Archduke Gerhard
Archduke Martin
Archduchess Isabella
Full name
Robert Karl Ludwig Maximilian Michael Maria Anton Franz Ferdinand Joseph Otto Hubert Georg Pius Johannes Marcus d'Aviano
House House of Habsburg-Lorraine
Father Charles I of Austria
Mother Zita of Bourbon-Parma
Born (1915-02-08)8 February 1915
Died 7 February 1996(1996-02-07) (aged 80)

Robert, Archduke of Austria-Este, Prince Imperial of Austria, Prince Royal of Hungary, Bohemia and Croatia (Schönbrunn, 8 February 1915 – Basel, 7 February 1996), was born as the second son of Karl I, (beatified) last Emperor of Austria-Hungary, and Zita of Bourbon-Parma.

Archduke of Austria-Este[edit]

Arms as borne by Archduke Robert during his lifetime.

On 16 April 1917, at the age of two, Robert was created Archduke of Austria-Este by his father, the Emperor. Archduke Robert was thereby chosen to preserve, in the form of a distinct secundogeniture, the Habsburg-Lorraine representation of the once-sovereign Duchy of Modena which had belonged to the House of Este. He was thus made heir to his assassinated relative Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, (1863–1914), who had inherited in 1875 the Austria-Este designation and what had been salvaged of the Este fortune when the duchy was annexed to Italy in 1860.

Archduke Robert descended through his Habsburg father from Ercole III d'Este, Duke of Modena, and his mother Zita was a descendant of Maria Beatrice d'Este, heiress of Modena and her husband, Archduke Ferdinand of Austria. Thus the lineage of the last Este dukes, in female descent, remained joined to the Austria-Este legacy. Archduke Robert eventually adopted use for himself and his descendants in male line the surname Austria-Este, and he took also the title Duke of Este, intended henceforth to be borne by the head of the Austria-Este branch of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine.

Upon his death in 1996, he was succeeded as head of this line by his son, Archduke Lorenz of Austria-Este, Prince of Belgium (born 1955). Although the marriage of his eldest son to Princess Astrid of Belgium, former heiress presumptive to the Kingdom of Belgium, relegated use of the Austria-Este archdukedom to a secondary title in that realm, the title continues in use elsewhere among his cadet descendants.


Archduke Robert married Princess Margherita of Savoy-Aosta (born 7 April 1930), elder daughter of the late Amadeo, 3rd Duke of Aosta on 28 December 1953 in Bourg-en-Bresse, France (civilly) and 29 December 1953 (religiously), in Brou, France.
The couple had five children, all of whom use the designation of Austria-Este:

  • Archduchess Maria Beatrice Anna Felicitas Zita Charlotte Adelheid Christina Elisabeth Gennara(11 December 1954), who wed 26 April 1980 in Chartres Count Riprand of Arco-Zinneberg, a great-grandson of the last Bavarian king, Ludwig III and of Maria Theresia, Archduchess of Austria-Este. They have six daughters:
    • Countess Anna Theresa Maria von und zu Arco-Zinneberg (1981);
    • Countess Margherita Ginevra Maria von und zu Arco-Zinneberg (1983);
    • Countess Olympia Elena Maria von und zu Arco-Zinneberg (1988);
    • Countess Maximiliana Aimée Maria von und zu Arco-Zinneberg (1990);
    • Countess Marie Gabrielle Hilary von und zu Arco-Zinneberg (1992);
    • Countess Giorgiana Astrid Maria von und zu Arco-Zinneberg (1997)
  • Archduke Lorenz (16 December 1955), who wed 22 September 1984 at Brussels, Princess Astrid of Belgium (born 1962), only daughter of King Albert II of the Belgians. They have three daughters and two sons:
  • Archduke Gerhard Thaddäus Anton Marcus d'Aviano Maria Umberto Otto Carl Amadeus (30 October 1957)
  • Archduke Martin Carl Amadeo (21 December 1959), who wed Princess Katharina of Isenburg, sister of Sophie, Princess of Prussia. They have three sons and a daughter:
    • Archduke Bartholomaeus Karl Robert of Austria (2006);
    • Archduke Emmanuel Achatius Franz Alexander of Austria (2008);
    • Archduchess Helene Cristina Margherita of Austria (2009);
    • Archduke Luigi Amedeo Thadeus of Austria (2011)
  • Archduchess Isabella Maria Laura Helena Antonia Zita Anna Gennara (2 March 1963), who wed Count Andrea Czarnocki-Lucheschi. They have three sons and a daughter:
    • Alvise Marie Lorenz Bronislaw Robert Marcus Czarnocki-Lucheschi (1999);
    • Carlo Amedeo Czarnocki-Lucheschi (2000);
    • Maria Anna Astrid Martin Zita Lucia Victoria Czarnocki-Lucheschi (2002);
    • Alessandro Czarnocki-Lucheschi (2004)


Robert, Archduke of Austria-Este
Cadet branch of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine
Born: 8 February 1915 Died: 7 February 1996
Titles in pretence
Preceded by
Karl I of Austria
Archduke of Austria-Este
Succeeded by
Archduke Lorenz
Heir to the Austrian-Hungarian throne
1 April 1922 – 11 January 1961
Succeeded by
Karl Habsburg-Lothringen