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MARIA THERESA: Medal for the recovery of the Empress from small pox 1767.M[ARIA] THERESIA D[EI] G[RATIA] R[OMANORVM] IMP[ERATRIX] HV[NGARIAE] BO[HEMIAE] REG[iNA], in English, Maria Theresa, by the Grace of God, Empress of the Romans, Queen of Hungary and Bohemia. REV: A nun with incense kneeling before an altar.DEO CONSERVATORI AUGUSTAE. God Preserved The Empress OBREDDIT. PATR. MATR.22 IVL 1767. Ceremony to God for Those That Died. 22 July 1767.

Silver 22mm. by Franz Anton Wideman.




Smallpox invades Vienna

In 1767, Maria Theresa caught smallpox (She became infected while comforting her pox-stricken daughter-in-law, Maria Josepha (second wife of Joseph II) . So did Josephina of Bavaria, Maria Christina and Albert of Saehsen-Teschen as well as Archduchess Elisabeth. Maria Christina and Albert recovered. Elisabeth, although survived, her beautiful face was irreparably pockmarked. Maria Josepha, from whom the Empress caught the smallpox, also died and this was to have a tragic finale.


When Maria Theresa had recovered, she was ready to prepare for the marriage of her daughter Josephina to the King of Naples. Unfortunately, she demanded that Maria Josephina visited the grave of her recently passed away sister in law, Maria Josepha. Upon Josephina's return, she had caught the smallpox from the tomb and died a few days later. Josephina was only 16 when she died.


This medal was issued to commemorated the Service held on the 22nd July 1767 to give thanks to God for the Empress' survival and also to remember those that perished.

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