Maria Theresa

Maria Theresa empress of Austria and Germany. the daughter of Charles VI, was born at Vienna May 13, 1717, and succeeded to the throne, by the "Pragmatic Sanction," Oct. 21, 1740. With her secular history we have nothing to do here, but as to her influence on the interests of Romanism and Protestantism, we must add here a few particulars to the article on Austria. Although herself a zealous Roman Catholic, she maintained the rights of her crown against the court of Rome, and endeavored to correct some of the worst abuses in the Church. She prohibited the presence of priests at the making of wills, abolished the right of asylum in churches and convents, suppressed the Inquisition in Milan, and in 1773 the Order of Jesuits. She also forbade that any person, male or female, should take monastic vows before the age of twenty-five years. She did nothing, however, to ameliorate the treatment of the Protestants in her dominions. She professed personal sympathy with their oppressed condition, but pretended to be unable to do anything for them on account of her coronation oaths and the laws of the country. This was especially the case in Hungary. Alaria Theresa died Nov. 29,1780, leaving as her successor to the throne Joseph II, who is noted for his generous efforts in behalf of his Protestant subjects. See Duller, M. Theresia u. Joseph II (Wiesbaden, 1844); Ramshom, M. Theresia u. ihre Zeit (Lpz. 1859 sq.); Wolf, Oestereich unter Maria Theresa (1855); Coxe, House of Austria, 3:189 sq., 241 sq.; Vehse,

Memoirs of the Court of Austria, 2:164 sq. SEE AUSTRIA; SEE BOHEMIA; SEE HUNGARY.

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