On This Day

Charles VI

Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI

Profession: Holy Roman Emperor

Nationality:
Austria
Austrian

Why Famous: As the second son of Holy Roman Emperor Leopold I, Charles VI didn't inherit his father's title until the death of his brother Joseph I death in 1711.

Prior to inheriting the throne of Austria Charles had tried unsuccessfully to claim the throne of Spain as Charles III after the death of Charles II in 1700, claiming descent through his mother. Philip of Anjou (later Philip V) the grandson of Louis XIV, was named heir and contested Charles' claim. The Spain war of Succession lasted until 1711, although Charles never gained the upper hand.

As Holy Roman Emperor Charles succeeded in expanding the empires territories against the Ottoman Empire but lost the later war of Polish Succession.

Throughout his reign Charles was concerned with the Habsburg succession, especially after the death of his infant son left him with just two daughters, which under Slavic law could not succeed him. In 1713 he brought in the Pragmatic Sanction, allowing women to inherit the Habsburg throne, making his daughter Maria Theresa his heir but excluding his brother's own daughters.

Born: October 1, 1685
Birthplace: Hofburg Palace, Vienna, Austria
Star Sign: Libra

Died: October 20, 1740 (aged 55)
Cause of Death: Fell ill after a hunting trip across the Hungarian border in wet and cold weather though notably Voltaire wrote Charles VI died from a meal of death cap mushrooms.

Married Life

  • 1708-08-01 Future Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI (32) marries Elisabeth Christine of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel (16) at the church of Santa María del Mar, Barcelona

Events in the Life of Charles VI

  • 1711-04-17 Charles VI becomes Holy Roman Emperor after the death of his brother Joseph I
  • 1711-10-12 Charles VI is crowned Holy Roman Emperor in Frankfurt
  • 1713-04-19 Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI issues the Pragmatic Sanction, decreeing that Habsburg possessions could be inherited by a daughter
  • 1716-10-13 Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI's troops occupy Temesvar in Romania
  • 1718-08-21 Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI, Turkey and Venice sign peace treaty
  • 1722-06-30 Hungarian Parliament condemns Emperor Charles VI's Pragmatic Sanctions
  • 1723-12-06 Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI's Pragmatic Sanction with the Diet of Hungary recognizes the King's daughters as successors
  • 1724-12-23 Emperor Charles VI names Archduchess Maria Elisabeth of Austria land guardian of the Austrian Netherlands
  • 1725-04-30 Emperor Charles VI & King Philip IV of Spain sign Treaty of Vienna
  • 1726-08-06 Treaty of Alliance between the Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI and the Russian Empire signed at Vienna
  • 1733-10-10 France declares war on emperor Charles VI
  • 1735-10-03 France and Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI sign peace accord
  • 1738-08-02 France offers Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI mediation in his war against Turkey
  • 1739-04-05 French and Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI sign secret treaty

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