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Duchess Habsburg, a tenant in her own palace FEATURE 01/14/2011

Friday, January 14, 2011

Duchess Habsburg, a tenant in her own palace

FEATURE

01/14/2011
ZYWIEC — After 60 years in exile in Switzerland, Duchess Marie-Christine von Habsburg, 87, is living out her golden years as a tenant in two rooms of her family’s vast palace in southern Poland.

“Well, isn’t that funny? I live here as a tenant in my own palace” in the town of Zywiec, she says, making light of the situation.

But she insists she is “the happiest of tenants” in one of the properties of the famed Habsburg dynasty, this one expropriated by communists after the war and which her family never tried to reclaim after the 1989 demise of communism.

“I’m delighted to be back where I was born, where I spent my childhood,” says the octogenarian confined to a wheelchair and dressed in her trademark black.

A member of the House of Habsburg, a dynasty originating in what today is Austria that reigned over much of Europe from the 15th to the 20th century, she was able to return to the 19th-century palace only after the fall of communism two decades ago. Her family had been driven out by the Nazis during World War II and the communists prevented their return after 1945..... MORE

SourceThe Daily Tribune

URL: http://www.tribuneonline.org/commentary/20110114com7.html

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