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Matthias II (Emperor)

male / Austrian
king, stadtholder, collector
Vienna (city) 1557-02-24
Vienna (city) 1619-03-20
Family relationships
this field records any family relationship to one or more other artist(s).
Matthias was the fourth son of the emperor Maximilian II and his wife, the Infanta Maria. His other brothers were the emperor Rudolf II, Archduke Ernst of Austria, who became 'Stadtholder' (viceroy) of the Habsburg Netherlands, Maximilian, who became 'Hochmeister des Deutschen Ordens'(High Master of the German Order) and Albrecht, Arch-Bishop of Toledo and later 'Stadtholder' of the Southern Netherlands with his wife Isabella Clara Eugenia. He also had six sisters, through whom he became familiarly attached to almost every European royal family. This policy of intermarrying is a clear example of the proud Habsburg adagium 'Alii gerunt bella. Tu Felix Austria nube!'('let others wage wars. You, fortunate Austria, marry!') Matthias himself married with archduchess Anna of Austria, his cousin. They did not have issue to survive them.
See also
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This person/entity in other databases
Biographical information
Active in
  • Wenen (stad)
  • Antwerpen (stad) 1578 - 1581
    In 1578 the Estates of (all) f the Netherlands invited him to become Governor-General and rule in the name of his uncle, Philip II, instead of his official viceroy, Don Juan of Austria (a natural son of Emperor Charles V). Although he accepted this and collaborated in this function to settle the religious strife in the provinces, although his government was never accepted by Philip II in Madrid. When the rebels unilaterally abdicated Phip II in 1581 (Acte van Verlatinghe), Matthias returned home to Vienna.
  • Linz (Oostenrijk) 1583
  • Wenen (stad) 1593 - 1611
    In 1593 he became governor of Austria, appointed by his brother, the emperor Rudolf II (who resided mainly in Prague). In this function he settled the strife with the calvinists in Hungary (against the will of Rudolf II). As Rudolf II was without issue, Matthias became the Emperor Elect of the Holy Roman Empire and the official head of the Habsburg family. As Rudolf II became more and more incaple through his (mental) illness to govern, Matthias forced him to cede authority to him in Hungary, Austria and Moravia in 1608, followed in 1611 Bohemia: he was crowned king of Bohemia on 23 May 1611 in Prague.
  • Bratislava 1608-11-19
    Coronation as king of Hungary and Moravia in Pressburg
  • Frankfurt am Main (stad) 1612-06-26
    Coronation as Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire
  • Praag 1612 - 1616
    Matthias and his army occupied Prague and kept Rudolf in protective custody (i.e. he took him prisoner) in Prague Castle. After his accession to the imperial; throne, his religious policy was dominated by Klesl, the Arch-bishop of Vienna, who wanted to work out a religious peace between catholics and protestants. Matthias's conciliatory policies were opposed by the more intransigent Catholic Habsburgs, particularly Matthias's brother Archduke Maximilian, who hoped to secure the succession for the inflexible Catholic Archduke Ferdinand (later Emperor Ferdinand II). The start of the Bohemian Protestant revolt in 1618 provoked Maximilian to imprison Klesl and revise his policies. Matthias, old and ailing, was unable to prevent a takeover by Maximilian's faction. Ferdinand, who had already been crowned King of Bohemia (1617) and of Hungary (1618), succeeded Matthias as Holy Roman Emperor. Matthias died in 1619 in Vienna
  • Wenen (stad) 1616 - 1619
born in
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Creation date: 2017-03-20; Last modified date: 2023-05-16


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