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Sisi and the Summer Palace

Duchess Elisabeth of Bavaria was never intended to be the Empress of Austria. Her mother had taken her and her older sister Helene to Austria to meet their distant relative Franz Josef who at 23 was already the Emperor of Austria. Helene was eighteen and the right age for marriage and Elisabeth, called Sisi by her family and friends, was fifteen. It was Sisi, however, who caught the Emperor’s eye and they were married a year later in 1854.


Home, Home on the Puszta

When you think of Hungary you may not think of wide open spaces but just as Russia has its Steppes, Argentina its Pampas and America its prairie, Hungary has its Puszta which translates as “empty, bare grassy plain”. This great plain stretches from the Danube to the Eastern border and, with a land mass larger than Holland takes up about a third of the country.

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