Infanta Maria Josefa of Spain
Maria Josefa of Spain was a Princess of Naples and Sicily by birth. At the accession of her father to the Spanish throne as Charles III, born and raised in Naples, she arrived in Spain with her family in October 1759, at age fifteen. She lived at the court of her father and with her brother Charles IV of Spain, Princess María Josefa of Naples and Sicily was born in Gaeta, Naples. She received the name of her grandmother, Maria Josepha of Austria. Her father had been King of Naples and Sicily as part of a Personal Union since 1734 and her parents married in 1738 and Maria Josefa was their first daughter to survive over the age of 5. Her parents fourth child, at the time of her birth she had an older sister María Isabel Ana and her younger sister Princess Maria Luisa was chosen over Maria Josefa to marry the Grand Duke of Tuscany, son of Empress Maria Theresa. As a princess of Naples and Sicily, she was an Infanta of Spain through her father and this entitled Maria Josefa to the style of Royal Highness.
Her parents were a couple, her mother Maria Amalia of Saxony died barely a year after the familys arrival to Spain. Her father himself died in 1788, Maria Josefa lived at a court dominated by her sister-in-law, Maria Luisa of Parma, a granddaughter of Louis XV of France with whom she did not get along. Maria Josefa was a candidate for marrying the widower Louis XV, Louis rejected the idea being offended at her young age. After the death of her father, she continued living in the Royal Palace with her brother Charles IV and she supported the Carmelitas nuns, in whose convent of Saint Teresa she arranged to be buried. She died at the Royal Palace of Madrid aged 57, before her brother Charles IV lost the throne and was exiled in 1808, in 1877 her body was transferred to El Escorial. The Majesty of Spain, Royal Collections from The Museo del Prado & The Patrimonio Nacional, mississippi Commission For international Cultural Exchange Inc,2001
Royal Palace of Naples
The Royal Palace of Naples is a palace and historical tourist destination located in central Naples, southern Italy. The palace is on the site of a residence, which had housed the former viceroy Don Pedro de Toledo. Construction on the present building was begun in the 17th century by the architect Domenico Fontana. Intended to house the King Philip III of Spain on a visit never fulfilled to this part of his kingdom, instead it initially housed the Viceroy Fernando Ruiz de Castro, count of Lemos. By 1616, the facade had been completed, and by 1620, the decoration of the Royal Chapel of Assumption was not completed until 1644 by Antonio Picchiatti. In 1734, with the arrival of Charles III of Spain to Naples, on the occasion of his marriage to Maria Amalia of Saxony in 1738, Francesco De Mura and Domenico Antonio Vaccaro helped remodel the interior. It was Charles who build the three palaces located more peripheral to the city center. Further modernization took place under Ferdinand I of the Two Sicilies, in 1768, on the occasion of his marriage to Maria Carolina of Austria, under the direction of Ferdinando Fuga, the great hall was rebuilt and the court theater added.
During the second half of the 18th century, a new wing was added, during the Napoleonic occupation the palace was enriched by Joachim Murat and his wife, Caroline Bonaparte, with Neoclassic decorations and furnishings. However, a fire in 1837 damaged many rooms, and required restoration from 1838 to 1858 under the direction of Gaetano Genovese, further additions of a Party Wing and a Belvedere were made in this period. At the corner of the palace with San Carlo Theatre, a new facade was created that obscured the viceroyal palace of Pedro de Toledo, in 1922, it was decided to transfer here the contents of the National Library. The transfer of collections was made by 1925. The library suffered from bombing during World War II and the subsequent military occupation of the building caused serious damage, the statues are displayed in chronological order, based on the dynasty of each ruler. The series starts with Roger the Norman, and ends with Vittorio Emanuele II, the tallest statue, Royal Palace of Naples - Official website Royal Palace of Naples
Museo del Prado
The Prado Museum is the main Spanish national art museum, located in central Madrid. Founded as a museum of paintings and sculpture in 1819, it contains important collections of other types of works. El Prado is one of the most visited sites in the world, and it is considered one of the greatest art museums in the world. The collection currently comprises around 8,200 drawings,7,600 paintings,4,800 prints, and 1,000 sculptures, in addition to a large number of other works of art and historic documents. As of 2012, the museum displayed about 1,300 works in the buildings, while around 3,100 works were on temporary loan to various museums. The museum received 2.8 million visitors in 2012 and it is one of the largest museums in Spain. The best-known work on display at the museum is Las Meninas by Velázquez, Velázquez and his keen eye and sensibility were responsible for bringing much of the museums fine collection of Italian masters to Spain, now the largest outside of Italy. The museum is planning a 16% extension in the nearby Salón de Reinos and their efforts and determination led to the Royal Collection being enriched by some of the masterpieces now to be seen in the Prado.
In addition to works from the Spanish royal collection, other holdings increased and enriched the Museum with further masterpieces, such as the two Majas by Goya. Among the now closed museums whose collections have been added to that of the Prado were the Museo del la Trinidad in 1872, in addition, numerous legacies and purchases have been of crucial importance for the growth of the collection. Upon the deposition of Isabella II in 1868, the museum was nationalized and acquired the new name of Museo del Prado, the building housed the royal collection of arts, and it rapidly proved too small. The first enlargement to the museum took place in 1918, particularly important donations include Barón Emile dErlangers gift of Goyas Black Paintings in 1881. Between 1873 and 1900, the Prado helped decorate city halls, new universities, during the Second Spanish Republic from 1931 to 1936, the focus was on building up provincial museums. The art had to be returned across French territory in night trains to the museum upon the commencement of World War II, during the early years of the dictatorship of Francisco Franco, many paintings were sent to embassies.
The main building was enlarged with short pavilions in the rear between 1900 and 1960, in 1993, an extension proposed by the Prados director at the time, Felipe Garin, was quickly abandoned after a wave of criticism. In the late 1990s, a $14 million roof work forced the Velázquez masterpiece Las Meninas to change galleries twice, in 1998, the Prado annex in the nearby Casón del Buen Retiro closed for a $10 million two-year overhaul that included three new underground levels. In 2007, the finally executed Rafael Moneos project to expand its exposition room to 16,000 square meters. A glass-roofed and wedge-shaped foyer now contains the shops and cafeteria
Maximilian III Joseph, Elector of Bavaria
Maximilian III Joseph was a Prince-elector of the Holy Roman Empire and Duke of Bavaria from 1745 to 1777. Born in Munich, Maximilian was the eldest son of Holy Roman Emperor Charles VII and his wife, Maria Amalia of Austria, upon his fathers death in January 1745, he inherited a country in the process of being invaded by Austrian armies. During the Seven Years War Bavarian forces fought on the Habsburg side, Maximilian Josephs sister Maria Josepha of Bavaria was married in 1765 to Maria Theresas son Emperor Joseph II. But long-term weakening of Prussia was not in the Bavarian interest, Maximilian Joseph tried, as far as possible, to keep Bavaria out of the wars. Apart from militia troops, he sent only a force of 4,000 men to join the Austrian army. In 1758/1759, he withdrew Bavarian auxiliary troops from Austrian service, together with the Wittelsbach Elector Charles Theodore of the Palatinate he enforced the neutrality of the Empire during the conflict. Maximilian Joseph was a progressive and enlightened ruler who did much to improve the development of his country and he encouraged agriculture and exploitation of the mineral wealth of the country, and abolished the Jesuit censorship of the press.
In 1747 the Nymphenburg Porcelain Factory was established, while the Codex Maximilianeus bavaricus civilis was written in 1756, in 1759, he founded Munichs first academic institution, the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. During the severe famine in 1770 Maximilian sold some of the jewels to pay for grain imports to relieve hunger. In that year, he issued an edict against the extravagant pomposity of the Church which contributed to the end of the era of Bavarian rococo. He forbade the Oberammergau Passion Play, in 1771 the elector regulated general school attendance. In December 1777 Maximilian Joseph rode in his carriage through Munich, on the ride, as he passed one of the clocks, the mechanism broke. Commenting to the passengers, Max Joseph decided this was an omen, within days, he was stricken with a strange disease. None of his 15 doctors could diagnose it, but by Christmas, it had become clear that it was a virulent strain of smallpox. By the last day of the month he was dead without leaving an heir, Maximilian III Joseph is buried in the crypt of the Theatinerkirche in Munich.
He was succeeded by his distant cousin, the Elector Palatine Charles Theodore from the branch of the dynasty. Maximilian III Joseph ordered in 1751 François de Cuvilliés to construct the splendid rococo Cuvilliés Theatre and he ordered to decorate some rooms of the New Schleissheim Palace in rococo style. In 1775 La finta giardiniera, an Italian opera by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, received its first performance at the Salvatortheater in Munich
House of Wettin
The House of Wettin is a dynasty of German counts, prince-electors and kings that once ruled territories in the present-day German states of Saxony and Thuringia. The dynasty is one of the oldest in Europe, and its origins can be traced back to the town of Wettin, the Wettins gradually rose to power within the Holy Roman Empire. Members of the family became the rulers of medieval states. Other states they gained were Meissen in 1089, Thuringia in 1263, the family divided into two ruling branches in 1485 by the Treaty of Leipzig, the Ernestine and Albertine branches. The older Ernestine branch played a key role during the Protestant Reformation, many ruling monarchs outside Germany were tied to its cadet branch, the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. The Albertine branch, while less prominent, ruled most of Saxony, agnates of the House of Wettin have, at various times, ascended the thrones of Great Britain, Bulgaria, Poland and Belgium. Only the British and Belgian lines retain their thrones today, the oldest member of the House of Wettin who is known for certain is Theodoric I of Wettin, known as Dietrich and Thierry I of Liesgau.
He was most probably based in the Liesgau, around 1000, the family acquired Wettin Castle, which was originally built by the local Slavic tribes, after which they named themselves. Wettin Castle is located in Wettin in the Hassegau on the Saale River, around 1030, the Wettin family received the Eastern March as a fief. The prominence of the Wettins in the Slavic Saxon Eastern March caused Emperor Henry IV to invest them with the March of Meissen as a fief in 1089. The family split into two ruling branches in 1485 when the sons of Frederick II, Elector of Saxony divided the territories hitherto ruled jointly, as Albert ruled under the title of Duke of Saxony, his possessions were known as Ducal Saxony. The older Ernestine branch remained predominant until 1547 and played an important role in the beginnings of the Protestant Reformation, Frederick III appointed Martin Luther and Philipp Melanchthon to the University of Wittenberg, which he had established in 1502. The Ernestine predominance ended in the Schmalkaldic War, which pitted the Protestant Schmalkaldic League against the Emperor Charles V, although itself Lutheran, the Albertine branch rallied to the Emperors cause.
Charles V had promised Moritz the rights to the electorship, after the Battle of Mühlberg, Johann Friedrich der Großmütige, had to cede territory and the electorship to his cousin Moritz. Although imprisoned, Johann Friedrich was able to plan a new university and it was established by his three sons on 19 March 1548 as the Höhere Landesschule at Jena. On 15 August 1557, Emperor Ferdinand I awarded it the status of university, the Ernestine line was thereafter restricted to Thuringia and its dynastic unity swiftly crumbled, dividing into a number of smaller states, the Ernestine duchies. In the 18th century, Karl August, Duke of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach, established what was to become known as Weimar Classicism at his court in Weimar, notably by bringing Johann Wolfgang von Goethe there. The Ernestine Wettins, on the hand, repeatedly subdivided their territory
Dresden Castle or Royal Palace is one of the oldest buildings in Dresden, Germany. For almost 400 years, it was the residence of the electors and it is known for the different architectural styles employed, from Baroque to Neo-renaissance. It houses an art library and the management of the Dresden State Art Collections, the original castle was a Romanesque keep, built around 1200. The Hausmannsturm was built at the beginning of the 15th century, from 1468 until 1480, the keep was extended by the master builder, Arnold von Westfalen, becoming an enclosed four-wing construction. In the middle of the 16th century, an addition was added in the Renaissance style, after a major fire in 1701, Augustus II the Strong rebuilt much of the castle in the Baroque style. The collection rooms were created at time in the western wing. The Silver Room, Heraldic Room and the Pretiosensaal were built from 1723–1726, the 800th anniversary of the House of Wettin, Saxonys ruling family, resulted in more rebuilding between 1889 and 1901.
A Neo-renaissance renovation was undertaken, followed by various modernizations, such as in-floor heating, on the outside of the Stallhof, which links the castle complex with the adjacent Johanneum, the Procession of Princes was painted by the artist Wilhelm Walther. The 102-meter-long mural represents the history of the Wettins, since it quickly faded, it was transferred to about 23,000 Meissen porcelain tiles between 1904 and 1907. Most of the castle was reduced to a shell during the February 13,1945 bombing of Dresden in World War II. Three rooms of the Green Vault were destroyed, the collections survived, having been moved to safety at Königstein Fortress in the early years of the war. For the first 15 years after the end of the Second World War, no attempt was made to rebuild the castle, restoration began in the 1960s with the installation of new windows and has occurred rapidly since then. The castles restoration was completed in 2013, accessible is an art library with approximately 260,000 volumes of special literature on art history.
The character of the holdings is closely related to the focal points of the museums. The Gallery of the Electors and the Hausmannsturm, once Dresdens largest tower, the Green Vault is a museum that contains the largest collection of treasures in Europe. Founded by Augustus II the Strong in 1723, it features a unique, the museum consists of the Historic Green Vault and the New Green Vault. The Historic Green Vault is known for its treasure chambers, and is itself a work of art. The New Green Vault is more modern, the Historic Green Vault is located on the ground floor of the Dresden Castle and visits require an advance booking, admittance to the New Green Vault, which is on the second floor, is not limited
Madrid is the capital city of the Kingdom of Spain and the largest municipality in both the Community of Madrid and Spain as a whole. The city has a population of almost 3.2 million with an area population of approximately 6.5 million. It is the third-largest city in the European Union after London and Berlin, the municipality itself covers an area of 604.3 km2. Madrid lies on the River Manzanares in the centre of both the country and the Community of Madrid, this community is bordered by the communities of Castile and León. As the capital city of Spain, seat of government, and residence of the Spanish monarch, Madrid is the political, the current mayor is Manuela Carmena from Ahora Madrid. Madrid is home to two football clubs, Real Madrid and Atlético de Madrid. Madrid is the 17th most liveable city in the according to Monocle magazine. Madrid organises fairs such as FITUR, ARCO, SIMO TCI, while Madrid possesses modern infrastructure, it has preserved the look and feel of many of its historic neighbourhoods and streets.
Cibeles Palace and Fountain have become one of the monument symbols of the city, the first documented reference of the city originates in Andalusan times as the Arabic مجريط Majrīṭ, which was retained in Medieval Spanish as Magerit. A wider number of theories have been formulated on possible earlier origins, according to legend, Madrid was founded by Ocno Bianor and was named Metragirta or Mantua Carpetana. The most ancient recorded name of the city Magerit comes from the name of a built on the Manzanares River in the 9th century AD. Nevertheless, it is speculated that the origin of the current name of the city comes from the 2nd century BC. The Roman Empire established a settlement on the banks of the Manzanares river, the name of this first village was Matrice. In the 8th century, the Islamic conquest of the Iberian Peninsula saw the changed to Mayrit, from the Arabic term ميرا Mayra. The modern Madrid evolved from the Mozarabic Matrit, which is still in the Madrilenian gentilic, after the disintegration of the Caliphate of Córdoba, Madrid was integrated in the Taifa of Toledo.
With the surrender of Toledo to Alfonso VI of León and Castile, the city was conquered by Christians in 1085, Christians replaced Muslims in the occupation of the centre of the city, while Muslims and Jews settled in the suburbs. The city was thriving and was given the title of Villa, since 1188, Madrid won the right to be a city with representation in the courts of Castile. In 1202, King Alfonso VIII of Castile gave Madrid its first charter to regulate the municipal council, which was expanded in 1222 by Ferdinand III of Castile
Teatro di San Carlo
The Real Teatro di San Carlo, its original name under the Bourbon monarchy but known today as simply the Teatro di San Carlo, is an opera house in Naples, Italy. It is located adjacent to the central Piazza del Plebiscito, and it is the oldest continuously active venue for public opera in the world, opening in 1737, decades before both the Milans La Scala and Venices La Fenice theatres. The opera season runs from late January to May, with the season taking place from April to early June. The house once had a capacity of 3,285. Given its size and antiquity was the model for the theatres in Europe. As was customary, the role of Achilles was played by a woman, Vittoria Tesi, called Moretta, sarro conducted the orchestra in two ballets as intermezzi, created by Gaetano Grossatesta, with scenes designed by Pietro Righini. The first seasons highlighted the royal preference for numbers. The new opera house was designed by Giovanni Antonio Medrano, an architect, and Angelo Carasale. The horseshoe-shaped auditorium is the oldest in the world and it was built at a cost of 75,000 ducats.
Including standing room, the theatre could hold over 3,000 people, military movements of infantry and cavalry and storms at sea can be represented here without falling into the ludicrous. But for opera, the house is too large, although the singers, Signora Isabella Colbran, and the Signori Nozzari, etc. have very strong voices, only their highest and most stentorian tones could be heard. Any kind of tender utterance was lost, much admired for its architecture, its gold decorations, and the sumptuous blue upholstery, the San Carlo was now the biggest opera house in the world. In 1809 Domenico Barbaia was appointed manager of the opera houses in Naples. He soon established a reputation for innovative and dazzling productions, which attracted both the public and leading singers to the opera house, on 13 February 1816 a fire broke out during a dress-rehearsal for a ballet performance and quickly spread to destroy a part of building. On the orders of King Ferdinand IV, another Bourbon monarch and son of Charles III and it was rebuilt as a traditional horseshoe-shaped auditorium with 1,444 seats, and a proscenium,33. 5m wide and 30m high.
Niccolini embellished in the inner of the bas-relief depicting Time and the Hour, the central frescoed ceiling painting of Apollo presenting to Minerva the greatest poets of the world was painted by Antonio, Giuseppe e Giovanni Cammarano. On 12 January 1817, the theatre was inaugurated with Johann Simon Mayrs Il sogno di Partenope. Stendhal attended the night of the inauguration and wrote, There is nothing in all Europe, I won’t say comparable to this theatre
By population, Spain is the sixth largest in Europe and the fifth in the European Union. Spains capital and largest city is Madrid, other urban areas include Barcelona, Seville, Bilbao. Modern humans first arrived in the Iberian Peninsula around 35,000 years ago, in the Middle Ages, the area was conquered by Germanic tribes and by the Moors. Spain is a democracy organised in the form of a government under a constitutional monarchy. It is a power and a major developed country with the worlds fourteenth largest economy by nominal GDP. Jesús Luis Cunchillos argues that the root of the span is the Phoenician word spy. Therefore, i-spn-ya would mean the land where metals are forged, two 15th-century Spanish Jewish scholars, Don Isaac Abravanel and Solomon ibn Verga, gave an explanation now considered folkloric. Both men wrote in two different published works that the first Jews to reach Spain were brought by ship by Phiros who was confederate with the king of Babylon when he laid siege to Jerusalem.
This man was a Grecian by birth, but who had given a kingdom in Spain. He became related by marriage to Espan, the nephew of king Heracles, Heracles renounced his throne in preference for his native Greece, leaving his kingdom to his nephew, from whom the country of España took its name. Based upon their testimonies, this eponym would have already been in use in Spain by c.350 BCE, Iberia enters written records as a land populated largely by the Iberians and Celts. Early on its coastal areas were settled by Phoenicians who founded Western Europe´s most ancient cities Cadiz, Phoenician influence expanded as much of the Peninsula was eventually incorporated into the Carthaginian Empire, becoming a major theater of the Punic Wars against the expanding Roman Empire. After an arduous conquest, the peninsula came fully under Roman Rule, during the early Middle Ages it came under Germanic rule but later, much of it was conquered by Moorish invaders from North Africa. In a process took centuries, the small Christian kingdoms in the north gradually regained control of the peninsula.
The last Moorish kingdom fell in the same year Columbus reached the Americas, a global empire began which saw Spain become the strongest kingdom in Europe, the leading world power for a century and a half, and the largest overseas empire for three centuries. Continued wars and other problems led to a diminished status. The Napoleonic invasions of Spain led to chaos, triggering independence movements that tore apart most of the empire, eventually democracy was peacefully restored in the form of a parliamentary constitutional monarchy. Spain joined the European Union, experiencing a renaissance and steady economic growth
Royal Palace of Madrid
The Royal Palace of Madrid is the official residence of the Spanish Royal Family at the city of Madrid, but it is only used for state ceremonies. King Felipe VI and the Royal Family do not reside in the palace, the palace is owned by the Spanish State and administered by the Patrimonio Nacional, a public agency of the Ministry of the Presidency. The palace is located on Calle de Bailén in the part of downtown Madrid, east of the Manzanares River. Several rooms in the palace are open to the public except during state functions. An admission fee of €11 is required, after Madrid fell to Alfonso VI of Castile in 1083, the edifice was only rarely used by the kings of Castile. In 1329, King Alfonso XI of Castile convened the cortes of Madrid for the first time, Philip II moved his court to Madrid in 1561. The old Alcázar was built on the location in the 16th century, after it burned 24 December 1734, King Philip V ordered a new palace built on the same site. Charles III first occupied the new palace in 1764, the last monarch who lived continuously in the palace was Alfonso XIII, although Manuel Azaña, president of the Second Republic, inhabited it, making him the last head of state to do so.
During that period the palace was known as Palacio Nacional, there is still a room next to the Real Capilla, which is known by the name Office of Azaña. The palace has 135,000 square metres of floor space and it is the largest royal palace in Europe by floor area. The interior of the palace is notable for its wealth of art and the use of types of fine materials in the construction. These include paintings by such as Caravaggio, Francisco de Goya, and Velázquez, and frescoes by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo, Juan de Flandes, Corrado Giaquinto. Muhammad I, Umayyad Emir of Cordoba, between 860 and 880, after the Moors were driven out of Toledo in the 11th century, the castle retained its defensive function. Henry III of Castile added several towers and his son John II used it as a royal residence. However, during the War of the Castilian Succession the troops of Joanna la Beltraneja were besieged in the Alcázar, the only drawing of the castle from the Middle Ages is one made in 1534 by Cornelius Vermeyen.
Habsburg Emperor Charles V extended and renovated the castle in 1537, using the architects Alonso de Covarrubias, Philip II made Madrid his capital in 1561 and added a continued the renovations. Philip III added a southern facade between 1610 and 1636. Philip V of Bourbon renovated the apartments in 1700
Fondi is a city and comune in the province of Latina, central Italy, halfway between Rome and Naples. Fondi is the town of the Plain of Fondi, a small plain between the Ausoni and Aurunci mountains and the Tyrrhenian Sea. The plain includes three lakes and is very fertile. Most in evidence are greenhouses for the production of crops for sale in Rome. The 15-kilometre long sandy beach stretches from Sperlonga in the south-east to Terracina in the north-west and lies along the Gulf of Gaeta and it is marked by a somehow well-preserved, typical Mediterranean coastal dune landscape. The territory of Fondi is partially included in the Regional Natural Park of Monti Aurunci, Fondi has an ancient history, beginning with early settlements about 1000 BC, the area was settled by the Italic tribes of Aurunci and, Volsci. According to the legend, it would have founded by Hercules in memory of the killing of Cacus. The first historical reference to Fondi dates to 338 BC, at the time of the Latin War, after a failed attempt of revolt led by Vitruvius Vaccus, Fondi remained a Roman prefecture, it received full citizenship, with a government led by 3 aediles.
The importance of Fondi lay in its position across the old Via Appia, begun in 312 BC, it was for more than two millennia the main roadway from Rome to southern Italy. Today the historical centre and surrounding wall of Fondi still form a square, as in the Roman camp walls, after the Gothic War and the Lombard conquest of Italy, Fondi remained a dominion of the Eastern Roman Empire. Here in 1378 the powerful Count Onorato I Caetani summoned the conclave in which the cardinals elected Clement VII against Urban VI, the Caetani lost Fondi after Charles VIII of Frances expedition to southern Italy, and it was assigned to the condottiero Prospero Colonna. Under the Colonna the city met another period of artistic and cultural splendour, thanks of the held by Giulia Gonzaga. In 1534, Fondi was sacked by Barbarossa, who was seeking to kidnap the beautiful Giulia, another sack followed in 1594, starting the decline of the city, which had in the meantime passed to the Carafa of Stigliano. In 1720 Fondi was acquired by the di Sangro family, in 1818 the declining city, surrounded by malaria-infested marshes malaria and brigandage, lost the bishopric seat existing there since the very early years of Christianity.
After the Armistice of 8 September 1943, the anti-Fascist novelist Alberto Moravia and his wife Elsa Morante took refuge in Fondi, agriculture in the area around Fondi has always been favoured by the presence of abundant water sources and by the climatic conditions. The traditional production of citrus has been supplanted by that of vegetables. Fondi is the seat of an important market for agriculture and food products which distribute millions of tons of products every year. Fondis main sights include, The Castle, with a round tower standing more than 30 metres
Maria Kunigunde of Saxony
Maria Kunigunde Dorothea Hedwig Franziska Xaveria Florentina of Saxony was a German noblewoman. She was a titular Princess of Poland and Saxony of the Albertine branch of the House of Wettin and she was a member of the Order of the Starry Cross and a collegiate lady in the abbey at Münsterbilzen. Later, she became Princess-Abbess of Essen and Thorn and she was the 15th and youngest child of King Augustus III of Poland, who was Elector of Saxony as Frederick August II, and his wife Maria Josepha of Austria. Her father liked hunting, often went to the opera, kept an art collection. However, he neglected his daily government duties and left them to his first ministers Count Heinrich von Brühl and her parents placed great emphasis on the education of all their children. Maria Kunigunde was taught Polish, French, philosophy, religion, music, as a young girl, she took part in operas and Singspiele performed at court in Dresden. She sang the title rôle in the opera Leucippo by Johann Adolph Hasse, as a daughter of a ruling family, she was destined to marry a prince to strengthen the political relations of the House of Wettin.
The candidate her father considered was Archduke Joseph of Austria, who became Emperor as Joseph II and his first wife, Isabella of Bourbon-Parma had died without producing an heir and his mother, Maria Theresa pressured him to remarry and produce an heir. Joseph considered marrying Isabellas younger sister Maria Louisa, she was engaged to the Spanish heir apparent. Joseph asked Charles father Charles III to break off this engagement, the Empress and her chancellor asked him to choose a princess from Bavaria or Saxony. In 1764, he left Vienna to meet potential brides, the Saxon court in Dresden favoured a marriage between Joseph and Maria Kunigunde, if only because he might help the Saxons solve their financial difficulties. A secret dinner meeting was arranged between the two at Teplice in Bohemia, Maria Kunigunde hardly said a word during this meal and Joseph decided she was too timid to be his bride. He married her first cousin, Maria Josepha of Bavaria, whom he considered not very pretty, Maria Josephas marriage was an unhappy one, Maria Kunigunde was spared this fate.
However, the story of her secret meeting in Bohemia spread around the European courts. One of the objectives of the House of Wettin was to increase their influence in the Lower Rhenish-Westphalian Circle in the northwestern part of the Holy Roman Empire. The court in Dresden demanded that Vienna make her princess-abbess of a prestigious ladies abbey as compensation for the marriage plans. The two courts had some problems agreeing on a suitable abbey, Vienna proposed to make Maria Kunigude coadjutor and heir designate of Hradčany Abbey, which Empress Maria Theresa had founded in the Prague Castle. However, Dresden rejected this, because the abbey was a subject of the Bohemian Crown, Dresden demanded she be given an immediate Abbey, which would make Maria Kunigunde an Imperial Princess