Karl and Zita – discussion
This spring we commemorated the centenary of the death of the last King of Bohemia and Emperor of Austria, Karl I of Habsburg-Lorraine, who ascended the throne during the turmoil of war in autumn 1916. His story sheds a different light on the crossroads of our history around 1918 from that we Czechs are used to. Karl seemingly lost everything, and this makes him similar to a number of subsequently venerated Bohemian martyrs, including Ludmila, Wenceslaus, Adalbert and John of Nepomuk. When, in spring 1922, Karl I died in exile in Madeira, he was 34 and left behind his wife Zita and eight children. Not just his brief life, but his “second life” too was full of paradoxes: in 2004, the first Slavic Pope John Paul II beatified the last Habsburg ruler, chiefly for his efforts to achieve peace in Europe, which is again a crucial issue for us today.
To mark the publication of Milan Novák’s book Karel I. Světec a poslední král v Čechách [Karl I: Saint and Last King in Bohemia] published by Triton in 2021.
Francesca Šimuniová OSB
Martina Viktorie Kopecká and David Macek
Programme will be held in czech only.
Free entry. Limited capacity. We suggest booking your place below on this site.