One is Hungarian Ambassador to France, the other exercises the same function to the Holy See. Two cousins who carry on the family line.
When in April Georges de Habsbourg-Lorraine, the new Hungarian ambassador to France, presented his credentials to the Elysee, he only had a minute and a half to explain to President Macron, whom he saw again in Budapest on December 13, the reasons why he felt a bit at home at the presidential palace… “My great-great-grandmother Louise Marie Thérèse d’Artois was born there. It was in 1819. » He ran out of time to clarify that she was the granddaughter of King Charles X of France.
To evoke the genealogy of the Habsbourg-Lorraine is to revisit the entire history of Europe. According to dynastic tradition, George of Habsburg-Lorraine could call himself His Imperial and Royal Highness the Archduke of Austria, Prince of Hungary, Bohemia and Croatia. His Austrian and Hungarian passports simply bear the name of Georg Habsburg-Lothringen, and he no longer has a choice, unlike his grandfather Charles, the last emperor of Austria, living between his three castles of one hundred rooms each in Budapest, Vienna and Prague. He lives in Paris, studied law, history and political science, worked in the media sector in Hungary, where his wife, born Duchess Eilika of Oldenburg still resides, who runs a foundation helping young, underprivileged or disabled, thanks to horse therapy.
Centuries that the Habsburgs were raised to serve their country and their empire
As for their three children, they are students all over Europe. After a brilliant business past, Georges de Habsbourg-Lorraine entered diplomacy at the age of 32, first as an itinerant ambassador and then, twenty-four years later, was appointed ambassador to Paris and supports bilateral relations between the two countries: “France is established in multiple sectors in Hungary, whether they are industry finance, energy, pharmaceuticals or distribution. PSA, Michelin, Valeo, Auchan… are present, as are many SMEs and mid-size companies. Six hundred French companies give work to 40,000 people. » And prefers to recall that « France is the fourth foreign investor in Hungary » rather than expand on its ancestry. He speaks German, Hungarian, Spanish, English, Italian, French. A European by heart and by blood like his father, Otto, twenty years MP in Strasbourg.
This passion also inspires Eduard Habsburg-Lothringen, cousin of the Hungarian branch, Hungarian Ambassador to the Holy See and the Order of Malta in Rome for six years. Doctor of philosophy, theologian, author of comics and historical documentaries, he lives in Rome and claims a strong Catholicism. “Christianity is considered with us as inseparable from the identity in the nation. For centuries, the Habsburgs were bred to serve their country and their empire, a rule deeply rooted in us, coupled with a strong sense of belonging to Europe. » Moreover, his brother Paul is a priest at Notre-Dame d’Auteuil in Paris. According to Eduard, the Habsburgs are somewhat the inventors of this “peaceful coexistence of different nations under one roof”. Cousins can converse in any language, but only Eduard speaks Latin.
“We are very friends, we love cinema a lot, we often talk about it together. We recently saw each other in Budapest at the Ambassadors’ Conference. However, our functions differ: I meet with the high clergy in the Vatican, take part in conferences, receive colleagues, attend a hundred masses each year, since each ambassador has his own during national holidays. « If he applies to pass on to his six children a story which we have not finished making films, he also wants to remind them that they must » feel free and make happy marriages. » Or how to protect the past without isolating yourself from the zeitgeist, a lesson that could be useful to all of Europe.
Any reproduction prohibited