Funeral of Empress Zita of Austria, 1989

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The Funeral of Empress Zita of Austria, Queen of Hungary at St. Stephen’s Cathedral followed by the burial in the Imperial Crypt at the Capuchin Church in Vienna on this day in 1989, the biggest royal event in Vienna since the Funeral of Emperor Franz Joseph in 1916 and the first Royal Funeral since the fall of the monarchy in 1918. The coffin was conveyed in the Imperial Catafalque, followed by a procession of 8,000 mourners, including her seven surviving children, 30 grandchildren and 60 great-grandchildren, as well as Grand Duke Jean (nephew) and Grand Duchess Josephine Charlotte of Luxembourg, the Princely Family of Liechtenstein, Prince Albert of Monaco, the Count of Barcelona, Crown Prince Albert of Belgium, the Crown Prince of Morocco, and Prince Raad Bin Zeid of Jordan.

Upon arrival at the Capuchin Church, in keeping with tradition, a member of the funeral party knocked on the door and there was an exchange with a priest:

“Who goes there?”

“Her Imperial and Royal Apostolic Majesty The Empress of Austria, Apostolic Queen of Hungary, Queen of Bohemia, Dalmatia, Croatia, Slavonia, Galicia, Lodomeria and Illyria; King of Jerusalem, etc.; Archduchess of Austria; Grand Duchess of Tuscany and Cracow; Duchess of Lorraine, Salzburg, Styria, Carinthia, Carniola and Bukovina; Grand Princess of Transylvania, Margravine of Moravia; Duchess of Upper and Lower Silesia, of Modena, Parma, Piacenza and Guastalla, of Auschwitz and Zator, of Teschen, Friaul, Ragusa and Zara; Princely Countess of Habsburg and Tyrol, of Kyburg, Gorizia and Gradisca; Princess of Trent and Brixen; Margravine of Upper and Lower Lusatia and in Istria; Countess of Hohenems, Feldkirch, Bregenz, Sonnenberg etc.; Lady of Trieste, of Cattaro and on the Windic March; Grand Voivode of the Voivodeship of Serbia, Infanta of Spain, Princess of Portugal and of Parma etc.,”

“I do not know her,”

A second knock and “Who goes there?”

“Zita, Empress of Austria and Queen of Hungary.”

“I do not know her.”

“Zita, a sinning mortal.”

“Come in”


4 thoughts on “Funeral of Empress Zita of Austria, 1989

  1. As I understand it, the Empress Zita was not only much respected but also much beloved. By all accounts she was a very pious woman who tried to help her fellow human beings. I believe she and her husband were considered examples of all that is good in a Catholic couple. Hopefully, all her good works were rewarded.

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