Lonely honeymoon in Laxenburg Castle and a mother-in-law as a control freak

Sisi's amazing Journey - Österreichs legendäre Kaiserin Sisi

Why did Sisi spend a lonely honeymoon? Where is Laxenburg Castle located? How did she get along with her mother-in-law, who was also her aunt?

The newly married couple spent their honeymoon in Laxenburg Castle near Vienna . This was in line with the family’s annual tradition of spending their spring break there.

But the young marital bliss was of one overshadowed by a diplomatic-political crisis. Emperor Franz Joseph was indispensable in the Hofburg. So he drove daily from Laxenburg to Vienna to conduct his government business.

Young Sisi was left alone in Laxenburg and cried her eyes out. She began to write poetry, which she used to express her sadness and loneliness. She was constantly monitored by her mother-in-law , who was very careful that the inexperienced young empress learned and observed the strict court ceremonies .

Elisabeth was still very uncertain in her new role as Empress , and the court allotted to her consisted of strangers. On top of that she was in a completely unfamiliar environment . The teenager longed for his family and the familiar surroundings in Possenhofen.

Archduchess Sophie – the “bad” mother-in-law?

Archduchess Sophie (1805-1872)

Archduchess Sophie was Elisabeth ‘s aunt and now also mother-in-law. She was the dominant figure and was often called ” the only man at the Viennese court” . At first she tried, with good intentions, to prepare her insecure daughter-in-law for her future role as empress.

She must not have acted very skilfully, because the first conflicts arose between the two. Elisabeth loved to go horseback riding in the area on her own , much to the displeasure of her mother-in-law .

Spontaneous rides without appropriate escort represented a security risk for the empress on the one hand, and on the other hand it was not in accordance with court protocol. Sophie is said to have scolded Sisi like a schoolchild. She thought Sisi would be easily malleable, which initially seemed so when Sisi was still doing her duties well. The tide was to turn later, because Sisi simply fled from the Viennese court.

Sophie was primarily concerned with observing etiquette. She always worried about him persistence of the dynasty. She took over the representation duties, as she has always been used to. She was also an important substitute mother for her grandchildren when Sisi went on longer trips to relax.

Franz Joseph was constantly torn between his mother and his wife and was not really a great support for Sisi. However, the relationship between the two women is said to have been far better than is rumored today.

After the death of her second eldest sonEmperor Maximilian was shot in Mexico in 1867 – Sophie withdrew from politics. The settlement with Hungary, also in 1867, did not correspond to their neo-absolutist ideals. She died in 1872 at the age of 67 and, like all Habsburgs, is buried in the Capuchin crypt.

Tip from Sisi’s Amazing Journey: How about a trip to Laxenburg? The former castle is only about half an hour away from the center of Vienna . Strolling through the huge castle park and visiting the Franzensburg is really worthwhile.

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