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Emperor Franz Joseph’s Study

Grand & Imperial Tour

A host of personal pictures and photographs bear witness to the style of interior favoured by the emperor in his private quarters. Over the course of his long life he amassed in this room a wealth of mementos of his wife Elisabeth, their four children and thirteen grandchildren.

With its plain furnishings and decoration, the study reflects Franz Joseph’s rather austere character.

Franz Joseph was a highly disciplined individual, and his daily routine was governed by a strictly regulated timetable. He regarded himself as the foremost official of his state, achieving an enormous workload, day in, day out. His maxim was: ‘One must work until one drops from exhaustion!’

At his desk by the window the emperor worked through documents and files, and dealt with correspondence in an unvarying daily routine. As a rule he also had his breakfast and small meals served to him in his study. The emperor thus spent most of his working day in this room.

The two large portraits show Emperor Franz Joseph at the age of thirty-three and his wife Elisabeth, also known by her nickname Sisi, at the age of twenty-seven. A small painting on the wall to the left of the desk portrays the couple’s son, Crown Prince Rudolf, as a child. Rudolf’s suicide at the age of thirty in January 1889 was a heavy blow for the family. The circumstances of the tragic events at Mayerling have still not been completely clarified.

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