The extraordinary story of Mitsuko: The countess was mysterious and fragile, the death of a man changed her

The extraordinary story of Mitsuko: The countess was mysterious and fragile, the death of a man changed her
The extraordinary story of Mitsuko: The countess was mysterious and fragile, the death of a man changed her

Horšovský Týn could serve as a textbook of architecture, we can find here all styles from Gothic to Renaissance and Baroque to Art Nouveau. The dominant feature of the city conservation area is the château, originally a castle from the 13th century, which was rebuilt in the Renaissance style by the Lobkovic family after the town fire in 1547. A chapel, a palace and the remains of the walls have been preserved from the original castle. The area is complemented by a large romantic English natural landscape park. We can see five sightseeing circuits at the castle.

About the life of Countess Mitsuko Coudenhove Kalergi

There is also a permanent exhibition about the life of Countess Mitsuko Coudenhove Kalergi. Mitsuko Aoyama (1874-1941) was the wife of Count Heinrich Coudenhove Kalergi, who served as Austria-Hungary’s ambassador to Japan, where he met and married Mitsuko. Mitsuko was born in Tokyo, the daughter of an antique dealer. In 1892, she met Count Heinrich (1859 – 1906), who was 15 years older. He was one of the most educated Austrian aristocrats, he knew 18 languages. The marriage took place in 1895. Many special permissions were needed from both parties because the marriage was considered unequal. Mitsuko had to be rebaptized as a Catholic.

Two children were born to the couple in Japan. In 1897, the count left the diplomatic career and returned to Bohemia to his native estate in Poběžovice. Five more children were born in Bohemia. The family lived in the castle in Poběžovice, and as a summer residence the earl had the monastery in Pivona modified. This is where Mitsuko liked to spend her time, painting. In 1906, the count died unexpectedly after 14 years of cohabitation. After his death, Mitsuko devoted herself to managing the estate and raising 7 children.

Before the First World War, she was a star of social life in Vienna. She belonged to the cream of the day. She was charming and mysterious like a princess from a fairy tale, educated, fragile like a porcelain doll. After the death of Heinrich, she changed, became domineering, others feared her, she often changed servants. Mitsuko socialized with Japanese ambassadors to ease her homesickness. During the 1st St. At the end of the war, two sons went to the front, and Mitsuko moved to Pivona and set up a military infirmary there. After the war she went to Vienna. She remained abandoned, did not have good relations with her children and did not socialize with them. She never returned to Japan. She succumbed to a stroke at the age of 67.

Heinrich is buried in Pobežovice, Mitsuko in Vienna. Both Pobežovice and Pivoň are in very bad condition. The castle in Poběžovice was inhabited until 1945 by the Condenhove Kalergi family. Until this year, it was called Ronšperk. Under Leopold Thun, Bedřich Smetana worked here as a music teacher. After 1945, the Border Guard was based here. The castle fell into disrepair and was even slated for demolition in the 1980s. Fortunately, the year 1989 came, the demolition was stopped and extensive reconstruction began here. The castle will be used by the city, an exhibition of the Pan-European Movement is planned here.

The original equipment that was preserved, furniture and paintings, was transferred to Horšovský Týn castle, which Mitsuko visited very often. The monastery in Pivona is in a desolate state. Although the new owner tried to save it, but the work stopped due to financial reasons and who knows how things will turn out with this rare building.

Son Richard: Founder of the idea of ​​Pan-Europe

The second-born son of Mitsuko and Heinrich – Richard (1894 – 1972) – went down in history as the founder of the idea of ​​Pan-Europe, the spiritual father of the idea of ​​the United States of Europe, the first president of the Pan-European Union. He fought for the unification of Europe, promoted a common currency, an anthem. The capital was to be Prague. Richard was born in Tokyo, then moved with his parents to Bohemia and lived in Poběžovice Castle until 1942. Among his friends were TG Masaryk and E. Beneš. Hitler saw him as a dangerous rival. In 1942 he fled from the Nazis to America, and lectured on European history at a university in New York. He then moved to Switzerland, where he died. After the end of the 2nd St. war revived the idea of ​​a united Europe. Basically, it was the idea of ​​today’s European Union. He was supported by Churchill, de Gaule.

Interesting facts and details about the life of Mitsuko, this prominent Japanese woman, can be read in Vlasta Čiháková’s biographical novel Noshiro – Mitsuko. Vlasta Čiháková also helped with the display of the exhibition at the castle in Horšovské Týn.

Alena Hesounová

The article is in Czech

Tags: extraordinary story Mitsuko countess mysterious fragile death man changed

PREV Avast: Shares trade today for the last time on the stock market crash
NEXT There are no laws for love (of music). Gorillaz, Kali Uchis or Fletcher are forging new gold for us