Karl of Austria (also known in English as Charles) Karl Franz Josef Ludwig Hubert Georg Maria von Habsburg (August 17, 1887 - April 1, 1922) was the last Emperor of Austria and the last King of Hungary (as Charles IV of Hungary) and of the Habsburg Dynasty.
He reigned from 1916 until his abdication on November 11, 1918. He sought to reclaim the throne of Hungary in the early 1920s.
Karl was the son of Otto Franz of Austria (1865-1906), younger brother of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand (whose assassination triggered off World War I), and of Princess Josepha of Saxony. In 1911 he was married to Princess Zita of Bourbon-Parma, a daughter of the exiled Duke of Parma. Their oldest son and current head of the Habsburg family is Otto von Habsburg, who served as a German Member of the European Parliament.
Karl has generally been seen by historians as an honourable figure who tried as emperor-king to halt World War I. On 14 April 2003 the Vatican's Congregation for the Causes of Saints, in the presence of Pope John Paul II, promulgated Karl of Austria's "heroic virtues", a step on the road to sainthood in Roman Catholicism.
On December 21 2003, the Congregation for the Causes of Saints promulgated a miracle approved by John Paul II obtained through the intercession of Karl, the case of a Brazilian nun who in 1960 found she was able to get out of bed after she prayed for his beatification, when she had been paralysed.
The beatification of Karl (from henceforth he will be called Blessed Karl) will be performed by the Pope October 3rd 2004. This is the penultimate step before the declaration of sainthood by the Catholic Church.
Names in other languages of the Austro-Hungarian Empire: German: Karl I, Czech: Karel III, Slovak: Karol IV, Hungarian: IV Károly