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  • Maria Theresa Room
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    Leopold Wing

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    The Maria Theresa Room

    The last resting place

    This room, which is also used by the Austrian Federal President today for formal occasions, is Maria Theresa’s former bedroom following the death of her spouse, Francis I, in 1765. And it is here that she dies in November 1780.

    Today the room is still decorated with portraits of Maria Theresa and Francis. When the presidential office moves in after WW2 the room is adapted to meet the new requirements. Light and air are needed. Originally the walls and ceiling are covered with heavy, red velvet and the Archduchess’ bed - complete with velvet canopy and drapes - dominates the centre of the room.

    And there is more to discover in Maria Theresa’s former bedroom. A astronomical clock over 2 m high, one of the most valuable pieces from the original furnishings, can still be found here today.

    The clock has 4 faces which not only tell the time but a range of other information such as the phases of the moon. The face responsible for the time of day is particularly interesting as the numbers are in anticlockwise order, the hands moving in the same direction.

    It is assumed that the heavy, velvet drapes impaired the Archduchess’ view from the bed. So a mirror hung at the foot of the bed serves as a viewing aid. The clock face is reversed so that one can read the time correctly in the mirror.