rchduke Eugen of Austria

born on May 21, 1863 in Groß Seelowitz
(Židlochovice, Czech Republic)
died on December 30, 1954 in Meran, South Tyrol, Italy

He was born Archduke Ferdinand Pius Bernhard Felix Maria of Austria and was a field marshal in the Imperial and Royal Army. Army and the last secular Grand Master of the Teutonic Order (1894-1923), as well as the last from the House of Habsburg.

Reference to the Goldener Adler

In 1904, Archduke Eugen stayed at the Goldener Adler. There is still a “contemporary witness” in the house today, a letter from Archduke Eugene to the Goldener Adler.


xcursion tip

Archduke Eugen is buried in the Cathedral of St. Jacob, the main church of the approximately 50 catholic churches in Innsbruck. This is located only only a few minutes’ walk from the Goldener Adler. Set out right away to to explore this unique sight of Innsbruck.

Two interesting details about the cathedral:

the peace carillon in the north tower of the cathedral is a 48-bell game with a range of 4 octaves and in this capacity is also called a carillon; it can be heard daily at 12:15.

Walk attentively through the old town of Innsbruck. You will see countless images of “Mariahilf” by Lukas Cranach the Elder on the houses. The original was created around 1537 and has its place today at the high altar in the cathedral of St. Jacob. It is the most widespread image of the Virgin Mary in the alpine, central European region.

Life and facts

Archduke Eugene was born in 1863, the youngest son of Karl Ferdinand. His mother was Archduchess Elisabeth Franziska Maria. Both parents were grandsons of Emperor Leopold II.

Like all members of the Habsburg family, he also learned a “civilian” trade, in his case carpentry.

In 1898 he acquired the Hohenwerfen Fortress in Salzburg and had it converted into his princely residence. It also housed his large collection of art and weapons. When the fortress burned down to large parts in 1931 through carelessness, he financed its reconstruction. In 1938 he had to sell the property to the National Socialist Gauleitung.

After the death of his uncle Archduke Wilhelm in 1894, Archduke Eugen succeeded him as the last secular Grand Master of the Teutonic Order. This was transformed into a purely spiritual order. As head he was also since 1894 owner of the famous infantry regiment “Hoch- und Deutschmeister” No. 4.

On January 11, 1897, in Igls near Innsbruck, he was appointed Grand Officer of the Order of Knights of the Holy Sepulcher of Jerusalem in the Austrian Governorate and was Grand Cross Knight.

In 1919 he left Austria and went into exile in Basel, Switzerland. He then moved to the Deutschorden Castle in Gumpoldskirchen, Lower Austria, in 1934, although he was forced to move to Vienna under pressure from the National Socialists.

After the end of the Second World War, Eugen settled in Igls near Innsbruck. Shortly before Christmas 1954, he left for Meran in South Tyrol to recuperate after overcoming pneumonia, but he died there during the night of December 29-30, 1954..

After being laid to rest in the chapel of the Provincial Palace, he was buried in the Cathedral of St. Jacob on January 6, 1955. In accordance with his wishes, Eugen was buried next to Archduke Maximilian III, the German Master, in the Cathedral of St. Jacob.

According to media reports, 35,000 people paid their last respects to the Archduke in the streets of Innsbruck.


Brettenthaler, Josef: Salzburgs Synchronik, Verlag Alfred Winter, 2002, ISBN 3-85380-055-6
Website Stand 22.07.2021 22:56

AEIOU Österreich-Lexikon im Austria-Forum
Website Stand 22.07.2021 22:55

Hamann, Brigitte: Die Habsburger – ein biographisches Lexikon, Wien u.a., 1988

Reifenscheid, Richard: Die Habsburger in Lebensbildern, 2. Auflage, Wien u.a., 2007, Seite 267

Nikolaus von Preradovich: Eugen. In: Neue Deutsche Biographie (NDB). Band 4, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin 1959, ISBN 3-428-00185-0, S. 673 (Digitalisat).

Erzherzog Eugen von Habsburg, in: Internationales Biographisches Archiv 08/1955 vom 14. Februar 1955, im Munzinger-Archiv (Artikelanfang frei abrufbar)

Adolf Lukas Vischer: Erzherzog Eugen 1863-1954. In: Basler Jahrbuch 1956, S. 130-149.

Website Stand 22.07.2021 22:55

data.cfm (innsbruck.gv.at) – Chronik von Innsbruck, zusammengestellt von Carl Unterkircher, Scriptor an der k.k. Universitäts-Bibliothek in Innsbruck. Druck und Verlag der Vereinsbuchhandlung. 1897. UB Innsbruck Separatabdruck der „Neuen Tiroler Stimmen“ 1892–1896.