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Archduke Johann and Anna Plochl

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Archduke Johann and Anna Plochl

Post  Sophie on Thu Aug 28, 2014 9:38 am

I'm currently reading a book about the "most famous woman" of the beautiful Ausseer Land in Styria. Anna Plochl was the eldest daughter of Jakob Plochl, post master of Aussee (today Bad Aussee), whom Johann, Leopold II's son and Francis I's brother, met at a local lake Toplitzsee in 1819. They fell in love, and Johann asked for his majestic brother's blessing for his marriage a few years later, while taking Anna to one of his house to be his homemaker ("Hausfrau"). It took years until Francis gave his final permission, and the couple married in 1829. Anna received the title of Freiin (baroness) von Brandhofen, then Gräfin von Meran. She and Johann had a son, Franz Graf von Meran (who was closed out from succession due to his parents' morganatic marriage), as well as lots of grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Their descendants organize feasts and meetings in Styria. The whole region is proudly keeping the memory of the reform-oriented and progressive Johann and his commoner wife as well, considering it as a love story that overwrote everything.

(A family portrait from 1848. Johann was much older than his wife, who outlived him with 26 years.)

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