July 1914

Franz Joseph I

Franz Joseph I (1830-1916) was Emperor of Austria and King of Hungary from 1848 until his death. A ruler among the longest in history, widely loved by his subjects, but also hated by those who, for various reasons, considered the Austro-Hungarian Empire a state out of time. “Out of times” was also his sovereign: traditionalist and tied to the past, Franz Joseph disliked the “new technologies”; he detested the use and the sound of the phone, preferred the horse to the car and the tub to the current water, and continued to dress in the fashion of his adolescence. Probably he preferred hunting instead the increasingly heavy government commitments.