Joseph II

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Joseph II around 1776 (painting by Joseph Hickel )
Joseph's signature, 1787.

Joseph II (born March 13, 1741 in Schönbrunn Palace , Hietzing , † February 20, 1790 in Vienna ) was the first member of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine to be Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire from 1765 to 1790 .

From 1765 to 1780 Joseph, who only increased the title of emperor, served as co-regent of his mother Maria Theresa in the countries of the Habsburg Monarchy ; from 1780 he ruled alone as Archduke of Austria . Joseph is considered an exponent of enlightened absolutism and set an ambitious reform program in motion ( Josephinism , tolerance patent , abolition of serfdom ). Shortly before the end of his life, he was forced to take back many of his reform projects.

His motto was: Virtute et exemplo ("With virtue and example").


Archduke Joseph around 1749 (painting by Martin van Meytens )

Origin and early years

Archduke Joseph of Austria-Lorraine was born on March 13, 1741 as the eldest son of the Austrian regent Maria Theresa and her husband, Grand Duke Franz Stephan of Lorraine in Schönbrunn Palace . After three daughters, Joseph was the longed-for male heir to the throne and was baptized Josephus Benedictus Joannes Antonius Michael Adamus on the day of his birth . Pope Benedict XIV served as godparents , represented by the Vienna Prince-Bishop Cardinal Sigismund von Kollonitz and the Polish King August III. , who was represented by Field Marshal Joseph Friedrich von Sachsen-Hildburghausen . The second and third first names were chosen in honor of the two godparents.

At the time of Joseph's birth, Maria Theresa was under great political and military pressure, which endangered the continued existence of the Habsburg monarchy . Their claim to power, based on the Pragmatic Sanction , was not recognized by Bavaria , Saxony , Spain and Prussia , which led to the outbreak of the First Silesian War (1740–1742) and finally the War of the Austrian Succession (1740–1748) due to territorial claims . With the Wittelsbach Charles VII. Was in 1742 the first time in over 300 years, no member of the House of Habsburg to Holy Roman King chosen . The birth of a male heir was therefore of enormous political importance for Maria Theresa, as she could now present herself as the regent of her underage son and consolidate her own claim to the throne. After the sudden death of Charles VII (1745), through the Peace of Füssen , she succeeded in enforcing the election of her husband Franz Stephan (as Franz I Stephan ) as Roman-German king and thus re-establishing the supremacy of her dynasty.

Maria Theresa had a comprehensive, detailed education program worked out for her son. Faith and religion were a focus of the program, but Joseph was not brought up in the spirit of the model of a Christian ruler. Rather, education and training were primarily aimed at preparing the Crown Prince as optimally as possible for his future duties as ruler. In the early years the focus was less on imparting knowledge than on maintaining health through riding and fencing lessons . In 1748 the officer Karl Josef Batthyány was appointed Prince Educator ( Ajo ), who encouraged Joseph's preference for the military . In the same year the young Archduke became colonel owner of a dragoons regiment named after him (since 1765/71 Chevaux-legers ), whose green uniform skirt he often wore instead of the white general's uniform, later also as emperor. A Jesuit gave him religious instruction , which was complemented by learning units in ethics , moral theory and philosophy . Joseph showed particular talent in learning foreign languages ​​such as Latin , French , Italian , Hungarian and Czech . In addition, science subjects , mathematics and artistic elements such as dance and theater lessons found their way into the curriculum. With advancing age, the focus shifted to the teaching of history , the nature , state, church and international law , the rational doctrine of natural law by, in the center of Samuel Pufendorf was that much different from the traditional concept of the state of a divine world government. Johann Christoph von Bartenstein , an adviser to his father, was responsible for introducing Joseph to the internal affairs of the monarchy, while the military training was completed by the Lorraine genius officer Jean-Baptiste Brequin de Demenge .

Imbued with his privileged position as heir to the throne and endowed with great self-confidence, Joseph was distinguished among his thirteen surviving siblings by a feeling of superiority and a sense of mission. Otto Christoph von Podewils , the Prussian ambassador to the court in Vienna, later expressed himself very critically about the upbringing of the boy, whom he described as haughty, intransigent and lazy. It would be difficult to get him to learn and teach him the most elementary knowledge.

From 1760 Joseph was given the opportunity to participate in the meetings of the highest collegially organized administrative authorities and the Council of State . Already at this time he emerged as an author of critical memoranda , which anticipated key points of his later reform program. Influenced by the writings of the Enlightenment (especially Voltaire ), the French encyclopaedists and the theory of physiocracy , Joseph formulated his basic conviction that the “good” necessary for a functioning state can only be achieved through unrestricted princely powers.

Marriage and offspring

Wedding ceremony in the Augustinian Church between Joseph and Isabella ( Martin van Meytens , around 1760/65)

In the course of the reorientation of the Habsburg alliance and foreign policy ( Renversement des alliances ), which was supposed to end the traditional opposition to the hereditary enemy France ( Habsburg-French opposition ), Maria Theresa and Louis XV decided. the dynastic union of the Habsburgs with the Bourbons . To strengthen the alliance and as an outward sign of unity, they arranged the marriage of Joseph to Isabella of Bourbon-Parma , a granddaughter of the French king . The 18-year-old Isabella was the eldest daughter of Duke Philip of Parma and his wife Marie Louise Élisabeth de Bourbon .

After the wedding ceremony was carried out by procurationem in the Cathedral of Padua on September 5, 1760 , Josef Wenzel von Liechtenstein solemnly transferred the bride to Vienna. There Joseph and Isabella were married on October 6, 1760 in the Augustinian Church by the papal nuncio Cardinal Vitaliano Borromeo . The lavishly designed, sumptuous wedding celebrations were intended to demonstrate the undiminished resources of the monarchy, which was in a state of war - the wedding took place during the Seven Years' War - to the public. Although the marriage had been entered into for reasons of state , Joseph was delighted with his wife and practically adored her. He admired and adored Isabella, saw in her his closest confidante. The sensitive Isabella, on the other hand, detested the court ceremony , was very reserved towards her husband and rather seemed to be drawn to Joseph's sister Marie Christine , to whom she wrote enthusiastic letters. As a result of a miscarriage in January 1763, Isabella's mental illness worsened before she died of smallpox on November 27, 1763 after three years of marriage.

The connection resulted in two descendants:

  • Maria Theresa (March 20, 1762 - January 23, 1770)
  • Maria Christine (* / † November 22, 1763)

The loss of Isabella plunged Joseph into deep despair. He wrote to his father-in-law: “I've lost everything. My adorable wife, the object of all my tenderness, my only friend is no longer. ”He also revealed his feelings to his brother Leopold in a letter:“ I am no longer able to say that I have lost everything. I wholeheartedly wish you such a good wife as my deceased. But may God save you from such a misfortune. "

As a result, various efforts were made to remarry Joseph. After unsuccessful negotiations with Spain and Portugal , among others , Maria Theresa urged her son to marry a German princess. Finally, Joseph bowed to the will of his mother and decided in favor of his second cousin Maria Josepha of Bavaria , daughter of Charles VII and his wife Maria Amalia of Austria . The wedding took place on January 23, 1765 in Schönbrunn Palace. Joseph's marriage to Maria Josepha, who was two years older than him, was considered unhappy and was probably never consummated. Joseph avoided the shared bedroom and even had the shared balcony in Schönbrunn partitioned off so that he would not have to see his wife. The emperor described his wife as a "small and fat figure" with "ugly teeth" . However, he admitted that Maria Josepha was an "unprovoked woman" who loved him and whom he valued because of her good qualities and that he suffered from not being able to love his second wife. Maria Josepha died of smallpox on May 28, 1767, Joseph stayed away from his wife's funeral.

After these negative experiences, Joseph stubbornly refused to enter into a third marriage.

In numerous folk legends, Joseph II is believed to have illegitimate children, the most prominent example of such a rumor is Joseph Gottfried Pargfrieder , who also claimed this himself. Pargfrieder supplied the Imperial and Royal Army with shoes under Emperor Franz Joseph.

Co-regent of the mother (1765 to 1780)

Coronation ceremony of Joseph II (painting by Martin van Meytens ), after 1764
Joseph II in coronation regalia (painting by Joseph Hickel)

In order to underpin Joseph's position as heir to the throne of the House of Habsburg-Lothringen and the dynasty's claim to the imperial crown, he was to be installed as his designated successor while the father was still alive. For this reason, Joseph was on 27 March 1764 Frankfurt am Main by the German electors to Roman-German king chosen . The solemn coronation ceremony with the imperial crown and imperial regalia in the imperial cathedral of St. Bartholomew followed on April 3rd . Joseph, who had devoted himself entirely to reason and rationality, viewed himself as a foreign body in the archaic ceremonial of the lavishly pompous coronation ceremonies. In the following year, Franz I Stephan suddenly died (August 18, 1765) and Joseph took over the imperial title, which was reserved for male rulers only. On September 17, 1765, Joseph was made co-regent by Maria Theresa in the Habsburg lands ( Archduchy Austria , Land of the Bohemian Crown , Kingdom of Hungary , Austrian Netherlands ) , he left the Grand Duchy of Tuscany , inherited from his father , to his younger brother Leopold .

Joseph carried the title of emperor, but the powers of the office were limited in the middle of the 18th century and only an honorary title with a strongly representative character. Much to his chagrin, Maria Theresa had revised her plan to withdraw from government affairs after the death of her husband and installed her son merely as co-regent. She had resolved to slowly but purposefully introduce Joseph into the government without relinquishing control. This often led to arguments that can be traced back partly to the generation difference, partly to the strongly differing character traits of the two personalities. A dominant, conservative mother faced her ambitious, enlightened son. Maria Theresa slowed her son's zeal for reform, as she saw her laboriously built-up rule over her heterogeneous empire in jeopardy, as a result of which the years of Joseph's co-reign were marked by paralyzing cooperation. As co-regent, Joseph had limited capacity to act and initially shifted his work to reforming the imperial court . In keeping with the enlightened state idea, he had developed an aversion to etiquette and ceremonial at an early stage and in 1765 merged his court with that of his mother, clearly showing that he would be economical. The emperor rejected the strict etiquette, abolished numerous ceremonies, abolished the dress code (abolition of the Spanish coat dress and approval of the uniform), ordered numerous savings measures and made the imperial gardens ( Schönbrunn , Augarten , Prater ) accessible to the public. As the universal heir of his father, Joseph used his enormous private fortune of around 22 million guilders to repay the national debt .

Roman-German Emperor

On many issues, Joseph had different, in some cases contrary, opinions about his mother Maria Theresa, who, during her own reforms, still lived spiritually and emotionally in the age of the Counter-Reformation , while Joseph was already a supporter of enlightened ideas. At this stage he admired Austria's long-standing anti-war Friedrich II. And traveled to a meeting with him to Neisse . After Maria Theresa's death in 1780, he tried to implement these ideas politically, but in a hasty or undiplomatic way, so that many of them ultimately remained ineffective due to delays or resistance.

Joseph's simple copper coffin in front of his parents' sumptuous double sarcophagus

When he died of tuberculosis in 1790 , Joseph II renounced the separate burial that was practiced by the Habsburgs at the time . He was placed in an oak coffin in field marshal's uniform and buried in the Capuchin crypt. The wooden coffin was later enclosed in an emphatically simple copper coffin that was placed in front of his parents' sumptuous double sarcophagus. One last letter to his closest friend Franz Moritz von Lacy the day before his death was preserved for posterity. After his death, the younger brother Leopold II received the imperial dignity .

At the death of Joseph II only a few mourned for him, but even then contemporaries like Johann Georg Forster wrote : "From the torch of his spirit ... a spark fell that will never be extinguished."

Enlightened absolutism and reforms

Joseph with his unloved nephew Franz (II.) Visiting the troops in Münchendorf ( Martin Ferdinand Quadal , 1786)
Created on behalf of Joseph: Mozart's Così fan tutte (1790)

He is considered an exponent of enlightened absolutism . For him, rulership was an office, a service to the state as a whole. “Everything for the people, but nothing through the people” was his alleged motto, which aptly characterizes his style of government.

Joseph II tried to drive back the influence of the nobility and clergy . The serfdom of the peasants, for example, was abolished by the serfdom revocation patent on November 1, 1781 . In memory of this reform of the emperor, he was revered by the people as "Joseph - the peasant liberator" and in the 19th century many monuments to Emperor Joseph II were erected in his honor , especially in Bohemia and Austria.

The noble estates were pushed back in favor of state officials. This also had to do with Joseph's tendencies towards centralization . So he tried to turn Austria into a unified state with ( standard ) German as the state language. He wanted to abolish the traditional special rights of the countries under his rule. These efforts sparked unrest in the Austrian Netherlands and brought Hungary to the brink of rebellion. He renounced even out in Prague and Bratislava to the King of Bohemia and Hungary to be crowned.

Another aspect of this endeavor is its art policy. The Burgtheater was declared a German national theater and the composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was commissioned in 1781 to raise the genre of the Singspiel in German to an artistically serious level with the Abduction from the Seraglio . The collaboration with Mozart was also maintained in the following years when the genre of the German Singspiel had not caught on. In 1786 he approved the premiere of Mozart's opera Le nozze di Figaro (based on the rebellious play The great day of the French Beaumarchais , whose criticism of the privileges of the nobility went very well with the emperor's policy). In 1789 he also commissioned Mozart to write his opera Così fan tutte .

Joseph's unitary state was primarily intended to ensure the prosperity and advancement of its citizens. However, Joseph had a tendency to take care of the smallest details, which his subjects sometimes found harassing. There were regulations for funeral ceremonies down to the smallest detail; Determining the number of candles to be lit at a mass; the ban on pepper nuts as a luxury food, which he considered harmful to health, and much more.

A more serious aspect of these efforts is his health policy, which was reflected in the establishment of the General Hospital and the Josephinum (a training center for military doctors, the first director of which was Joseph's personal physician Giovanni Alessandro Brambilla ). The general hospital was a kind of favorite project of the emperor, which he dealt with in great detail - including the planning of the so-called fool's tower , a custody facility for the mentally ill.

His reform work ultimately failed because of the open and hidden resistance of the old elites and the fact that he only ruled for ten years. When selecting his employees, he often overlooked their mistakes and lack of consensus. The protosurgeon Giovanni Alessandro Brambilla offered the conservative medical profession so much exposure that the development of surgery in Austria was ultimately delayed by decades. As governor of the Austrian Netherlands, Count Belgiojoso even welded the clergy and free spirits together into a common opposition through his clumsy behavior.

Judicial policy

One aspect of his reforms was that the legal system made significant progress under him. In 1783, parts of marriage law were codified in the “Ordinance in Marriage Matters” .

In 1787, the comparatively progressive Josephinian penal law for the hereditary lands of the Habsburgs was enacted, with which, among other things, mutilation penalties were abolished and the death penalty was only provided for in martial law, but not in ordinary criminal proceedings. In 1803 it was reintroduced for a few offenses. In the foreground of these considerations was that it is more useful to the state, such as public work, and punishments such as years of ship towing (with ultimately a very high death rate) are far more deterring than death. It also implemented the principle of legality for the first time , according to which only what is punishable by law can be punished. The nobility was not specifically mentioned and thus theoretically all privileges had disappeared, but in practice the status still had an effect.

In the same year, the civil law Josephine code was introduced, which was then replaced in 1812 by the ABGB , which has been modified to this day .

Domestic and economic policy

During his reign, mercantilist and physiocratic ideas were realized. The population was mainly seen as a reservoir of labor.

Measures to raise the population go hand in hand. Against this background, for example, the abolition of the death penalty in 1787 should be seen - the delinquents were ultimately used for forced labor.

He also implemented a tight police state organized by Johann Anton von Pergen with a spy system. Brief experiments with freedom of the press were quickly abandoned.

Foreign policy

In his foreign policy , Joseph was expansive, but mostly not favored by luck. The participation of Austria in the first partition of Poland by the gains of Galicia went back to the initiative of Prussia, in return for Russia's gains in the war with Turkey a corridor through Poland (as a link between Pomerania and East Prussia demanded). This was preceded by a policy of rapprochement with Austria, which had signed a secret treaty with Turkey in 1771 and thus put pressure on Russia. When Catherine II learned of this secret treaty from Russia, an offer was made to Austria to participate in the partition of sovereign Poland. The initiative for the partition plans did not come from Joseph, especially since the role of Austria among the European powers in 1771/72 did not set the tone. However, unlike his mother, he is said to have had no qualms about this deal.

When he after the death of the Bavarian Elector Max III. Joseph tried to join Bavaria to Austria and to leave the Austrian Netherlands to the Wittelsbachers , and the War of the Bavarian Succession against Friedrich II of Prussia broke out . In the Peace of Teschen in 1779, Joseph II ultimately had to be content with the Innviertel . In 1785 he tried a second time to acquire Bavaria in exchange with the Austrian Netherlands, but failed again due to the resistance of Frederick II and the princes' union he had founded .

In 1781 he concluded a defensive alliance with the Russian Empress Catherine II. In 1787 he was drawn as her ally in an unsuccessful Turkish war for Austria , which only ended in the Peace of Sistowa after Joseph's death .

Religious politics

Medal on the tolerance patent (Johann Christian Reich).
Allegory of the Tolerance Patent ( Léonard Defrance ).
Abolition of the monasteries in the Austrian Netherlands (Léonard Defrance).

Most famous, however, is his religious policy , which is usually only meant when one speaks of Josephinism .

In his tolerance patent , the monopoly of the Catholic Church was broken - Protestants and Jews were allowed to practice their faith, but only with tolerance; the primacy of the Catholic Church remained.

Joseph II did not shrink from selling property of the Dead Hand and ignoring the will of the donors .

All orders that were unproductive in the economic sense, that is, no nursing, schools or other social activities were abolished and their property was nationalized. As a result, many contemplative abbeys, some of which have a long tradition, were closed. The religious fund, which existed until the 20th century, was founded from the proceeds of the repeal, which took over the remuneration of the priests who thus became state officials.

Many public holidays and church festivals ( pilgrimages , processions, etc.) were also abolished, mainly to increase the number of working days.

On his initiative the administrative structure of the Catholic Church in Austria was rationalized. Parishes were reduced in size, new dioceses were founded and existing ones were brought into line with the borders of the crown lands .

to travel

Not so much as a Roman king and emperor than as crown prince , co-regent and sole ruler in the states of the House of Austria and as commander-in-chief of the Imperial and Royal Army , Joseph II undertook numerous trips that took him to Spain and the Crimea . Among the European rulers of his time, he probably covered the most kilometers. Of the almost 25 years in his reign, he spent a good six years outside his residence.

The trips to Italy lasted the longest in 1769, to Transylvania / Galicia in 1773, to France in 1777, to Russia in 1780 and to Italy in 1783/84. Joseph covered the greatest distances on his travels to France in 1777 and to Russia in 1780 and 1787. He was absent from Vienna the longest in the War of the Bavarian Succession in 1778 and in the War of Turkey in 1788.

Most of his overnight stays outside Vienna were in Prague and the military training area Hloubětín / Tiefenbach, Pest and Buda / Ofen, Brno / Brno and the military training area Turany / Turas, Lviv / Lemberg, Milan , Innsbruck and the surrounding area as well as Sibiu / Hermannstadt , outside the Monarchy on Florence , Paris and Versailles , Naples and the surrounding area as well as on Rome . In addition, there were the headquarters during the campaigns mentioned, 1778 Rtyně v Podkrkonoší / Ertina, Jičín / Jitschin and Oleśnica / Oels, 1788 Zemun / Semlin.

Outside the states of the House of Austria , Joseph traveled al incognito under the title Graf von Falkenstein, after a county in what is now Palatinate, which he inherited from his father as a neighboring country to Lorraine and without whose possession he would not have been able to become emperor during his mother's lifetime.


Joseph II bid farewell to
his confidante, 1790 (Quirin Mark).
Joseph II as a cult object of the Liberals , 1828–1835 ( Antonín Machek ).

The historical assessment of his person is very different. Due to the hasty and radical nature of his measures, some of which determined the life of the individual down to the last detail, Joseph was unpopular or hated during his lifetime, and he had to reverse some of his reforms shortly before his death.

Under the reign of his nephew Franz II / I, who was reactionary to the point of stubbornness . on the other hand, he gradually became a figure of light transfigured with nostalgia. The revolution of 1848 brought about a true "Joseph Renaissance", there were new books about him and the equestrian monument on Josephsplatz was the focus of political rallies several times. The expected reforms were seen by some as a continuation of his work. Contemporaries emphasized the coincidental fact that the day of the March Revolution in Vienna was also his birthday. The stylization of the “real German emperor”, which had existed in principle since the Wars of Liberation (1813–1815) and in the Vormärz , was successfully brought into play this time, and it continued to have an effect later. Overall, the type of appropriation depends heavily on the political programs of the individual phases of the revolution and is complex. Around this time, the non-exclusive designation as “People's Emperor” began.

Since the end of the 19th century he has been seen on the one hand as a progressive representative of enlightened absolutism , the term “reform emperor” emerges, and on the other hand the paternalistic and centralistic character of his regiment is pointed out.

Nonetheless, he was one of the most important rulers of Austria, to whom many constructive approaches can be traced back and who brought a significant boost to reform and modernization.

Overview of the reforms

Large coat of arms of Joseph II.

Joseph carried out many reforms, many of which he withdrew shortly before his death.


  • Abolition of serfdom
  • Josephine Criminal Law
    • Replacement of the death penalty by ship-pulling in civil criminal law (not in military criminal law), one year after the same decision by his brother Leopold II in Tuscany
    • no exceptions for the nobility in criminal matters
    • strong implementation of the principle later called nullum crimen, nulla poena sine lege (“No crime, no punishment without law”)
  • Religious freedom
  • Opening of the Prater and the Augarten to the public (the inscription on the gate gives the name "Estimator of Mankind")
  • Restriction of the strict Spanish court ceremonies
  • Protective tariffs for trade
  • Property tax for the nobility
  • Attempt: German as the state language in a multi-ethnic empire


  • Construction of schools and hospitals (including the old General Hospital of the City of Vienna )
  • Establishment of orphanages and poor houses
  • Banishment of the cemeteries from the cities in order to protect the groundwater
  • Establishment of a Styrian folk museum
  • Improvement of the living conditions of working children


  • Establishment of new parishes
  • Dissolution of 700 monasteries
  • Diminution of papal influence
  • Prohibition of “superstitious” customs of the church, at the same time freedom of religion for Christianity and Judaism in the tolerance patents of October 13, 1781 and 1782
  • Abolition of coffins for every dead person (instead a general coffin that had a trap door, a so-called Josephinian community coffin, also popularly known as an economy coffin - this was felt by the Austrians at the time as impious)


According to the Austrian sociologist and cultural anthropologist Roland Girtler , Joseph II is said to have frequently visited a certain prostitute in one of the numerous brothels on Vienna's Spittelberg, according to the vernacular . During such a visit he is said to have been rudely kicked out the door. This is reminiscent of the following inscription in the house at Spittelberggasse / Gutenberggasse 13 (today a restaurant ): “Emperor Joseph II flew through this gate in the arch - 1778”. However, like his mother, Joseph II refused to build brothels. When asked to approve the establishment of brothels, the emperor is said to have replied: “What, brothels? I only need to have a large roof made over the whole of Vienna ... "

In 1780, Josefsplatz in Vienna's Innere Stadt (1st district) was named after him.

On the occasion of his death Ludwig van Beethoven composed his cantata on the death of Emperor Joseph II (WoO87) for orchestra, choir and solo voices.


Pedigree of Joseph II

Nikolaus Franz von Vaudémont (1609–1670)
⚭ 1634
Claudia of Lorraine (1612–1648)

Ferdinand III. (1608–1657)
⚭ 1651
Eleonora of Mantua (1630–1686)

Louis XIII (1601–1643)
⚭ 1615
Anna of Austria (1601–1666)

Karl I. Ludwig (1617–1680)
⚭ 1650
Charlotte von Hessen-Kassel (1627–1686)

Ferdinand III. (1608–1657)
⚭ 1631
Maria Anna of Spain (1606–1646)

Philipp Wilhelm (1615–1690)
⚭ 1653
Elisabeth Amalie of Hesse-Darmstadt (1635–1709)

Anton Ulrich von Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel (1633–1714)
⚭ 1656
Elisabeth Juliane von Holstein-Norburg (1634–1704)

Albrecht Ernst I. zu Oettingen (1642–1683)
⚭ 1665
Christine Friederike von Württemberg (1644–1674)

Great grandparents

Duke Karl V. Leopold (1643–1690)
⚭ 1678
Eleanor of Austria (1653–1697)

Philip I of Bourbon (1640–1701)
⚭ 1671
Elisabeth of the Palatinate (1652–1722)

Emperor Leopold I (1640–1705)
⚭ 1676
Eleonore Magdalene of the Palatinate (1655–1720)

Duke Ludwig Rudolf of Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel (1671–1735)
⚭ 1690
Christine Luise von Oettingen (1671–1747)


Duke Leopold Joseph of Lorraine (1679–1729)
⚭ 1698
Élisabeth Charlotte de Bourbon-Orléans (1676–1744)

Emperor Charles VI. (1685–1740)
⚭ 1708
Elisabeth Christine von Braunschweig-Wolfenbüttel (1691–1750)


Emperor Franz I Stephan (1708–1765)
⚭ 1736
Maria Theresia (1717–1780)

Joseph II

Sources and Literature

Web links

Commons : Joseph II.  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. French Joseph II, Italian Giuseppe II, Croatian Josip II, Latin Josephus II, Dutch Jozef II, Polish Józef II, Romanian Iosif al II-lea, Serbian-Cyrillic Јозеф II, Slovak Jozef II., Slovenian Jožef II, Czech Josef II., Ukrainian Йосиф II, Hungarian II. József.
  2. In France Joseph was referred to as "empereur d'Autriche", in Germany increasingly as "German Kaiser", which did not correspond to the official title and documented the decline of the imperial idea.
  3. ^ Karl Gutkas: Joseph II. A biography. Vienna / Darmstadt 1989, p. 16.
  4. ^ Karl Gutkas Joseph II. A biography. Vienna / Darmstadt 1989, p. 24.
  5. Helmut Reinalter: Joseph II .: Reformer on the imperial throne. CH Beck 2011, ISBN 978-3-406-62152-9 , p. 15.
  6. Hans Magenschab: Josef II. Austria's way into the modern age. Amalthea, Vienna 2006, ISBN 3-85002-559-4 , p. 237.
  7. ^ Karl Gutkas: Joseph II. A biography. Vienna / Darmstadt 1989, p. 50.
  8. Stradal, Otto, 1911-: The other Radetzky: Facts and thoughts about a phenomenon . Österreichischer Bundesverlag, Vienna 1981, ISBN 3-215-04438-2 .
  9. Cölestin Wolfsgruber : The Imperial Crypt with the Capuchins in Vienna , Alfred Hölder, Vienna 1887 ( ), p. 262.
  10. Eberhard Schmidt: Introduction to the history of German criminal justice . Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1995, ISBN 978-3-525-18115-7 , pp. 256–258 ( limited preview in Google Book Search).
  11. a b Helmut Reinalter: Josephinism as Enlightened Absolutism. Böhlau Verlag, Vienna 2008, ISBN 978-3-205-77777-9 , p. 419 ( limited preview in Google book search).
  12. ^ Karl Gutkas (Ed.): Catalog of the Lower Austrian State Exhibition Austria at the time of Emperor Joseph II. Co-regent Empress Maria Theresa, Emperor and Prince. Melk Abbey, March 29 - November 2, 1980, 3rd edition, Niederösterreich Kultur, 1980, p. 286.
  13. Roland Girtler: From the bike. Cultural-scientific thoughts and considerations. Vienna 2004, p. 121.
  14. Points out that many works about the emperor are based on falsified quotations.
predecessor Office successor
Franz I. Stephan Roman-German Emperor
Leopold II.
Maria Theresa Archduke of Austria
Leopold II.
Maria Theresa King of Bohemia
Leopold II.
Maria Theresa King of Hungary
Leopold II.
Maria Theresa King of Croatia and Slavonia
Leopold II.
Maria Theresa Duke of Milan and Mantua
Leopold II.
Maria Theresa Duke of Luxembourg
Leopold II.