Maria Theresa Princess of Batthyány-Strattmann, nee Countess Coredo and Starkenberg pictured with the Batthyany Imperial diamond jewelery and princely jewels.
László Batthyány - Strattmann was born on 28 October 1870 in Dunakiliti, Hungary, into a very old Hungarian aristocratic family, the sixth of ten brothers. The family moved to Austria in 1876. His childhood was marred by the fact that his father left his family and converted to Protestantism in order to marry another woman Ladislaus' mother died when he was twelve years old.
According to the will of his father, he first prepared himself to care for the vast property of the Batthyánys. He first studied agriculture in Vienna, later also a great number of other subjects, including chemistry, philosophy and music. In this chaotic period in his life, he also fathered an illegitimate daughter
He met Countess Maria Theresia Coreth zu Coredo und Starkenberg, a devout Roman Catholic, whom he married in Vienna on November 10, 1898. The couple had thirteen children.
On 10 November 1898, he married Countess Maria Teresa Coreth. Their marriage was a happy one and God blessed them with 13 children.
The whole family took part in Holy Mass every day. After Mass Ladislaus would give the children a catechism lesson and assign to each one a concrete act of charity for that day. Every evening after they prayed the Rosary they would review the day and the assigned act of charity.
When he was preparing for his university studies, Ladislaus's father wanted him to receive the education he would need to look after the family property. Ladislaus therefore enrolled in the faculty of agriculture at the University of Vienna, where he also studied chemistry, physics, philosophy, literature and music. It was not until 1896 that he began to study medicine in which he obtained a degree in 1900.
In 1902, Ladislaus opened a private hospital in Kittsee with beds for 25 patients. Here he began working as a general practitioner, later specializing as a surgeon and oculist. During the First World War, the hospital was enlarged to admit 120 wounded soldiers for treatment.
On the death of his uncle, Ödön Batthyány-Strattmann, in 1915, Ladislaus inherited the Castle of Körmend, in Hungary. He also inherited the title "Prince" and the name "Strattmann". In 1920 his family moved from Kittsee to Körmend.
He took his duties very seriously as a Hungarian magnate and the princess represented the princely house as pictured above. At the appropriate occasions she wore the family jewelry and the large diamond brooch by Köchert. The brooch can be taken apart and, like many other Köchert jewelery, can be worn as smaller brooches and pendants, depending on the occasion.
They turned one wing of the castle into a hospital that specialized in ophthalmology. Ladislaus became a well-known specialist in this field, both in Hungary and abroad. He was also known as a "doctor of the poor", and the poor flocked to him for assistance and advice. He treated them free of charge; as the "fee" for their medical treatment and hospital stay, he would ask them to pray an "Our Father" for him. The prescriptions for medicines were also free of charge and, in addition to providing them with medical treatment, he often gave them financial assistance.
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