Margrave Andrew of Burgau

Andreas von Österreich, Margrave of Burgau, also known as Andrew of Austria (15 June 1558 at Březnice Castle in Březnice, Bohemia – 12 November 1600 in Rome) was a cardinal, Bishop of Constance and of Brixen. He belonged to the Austrian nobility, descending from its ruling dynasty, the House of Habsburg.

Andreas von Österreich
Andreas von Österreich Gemälde Brixen.jpg
Cardinal Andrew of Austria
Born15 June 1558
Březnice Castle in Březnice, Bohemia
Died12 November 1600(1600-11-12) (aged 42)
BuriedSanta Maria dell'Anima in Rome
Noble familyHouse of Habsburg
FatherFerdinand II, Archduke of Austria
MotherPhilippine Welser
Andrew's coat of arms
His coat of arms when he was Bishop of Constance


Andrew and his younger brother Charles grew up at Bresnitz Castle in Březnice, Bohemia, and later at Ambras Castle in Innsbruck, Tyrol. The marriage of their parents, Ferdinand II, Archduke of Austria and Philippine Welser, was morganatic. This meant that the brothers were not considered members of the Habsburg dynasty and could not use their father's title, Archduke of Austria, bearing instead that of Margrave of Burgau.

His father decided that Andrew should have a career in the clergy. In March 1574, Andrew travelled to Rome, where Pope Gregory XIII made him a cardinal, with Santa Maria Nuova as his titular church. Andrew was only 17 years old, his father having obtained the position for him.[1]

Later lifeEdit

Andrew was Abbot of Murbach from 1587 until his death. From 1589, he was also Bishop of Constance and from 1589 also Bishop of Brixen. In 1598 and 1599, he briefly replaced Archduke Albert VII as Governor General of the Habsburg Netherlands, while Albert travelled to Spain to marry Infanta Isabella Clara.

In 1600, he traveled to Rome to celebrate the Jubilee, afterwards visiting Naples. On his return journey, he fell ill and died after receiving the last rites from the Pope himself. He was buried in the Santa Maria dell'Anima in Rome.


Andrew had two illegitimate children, Hans-Georg Degli Abizzi (b. 1583) and Susanna Degli Abizzi (1584-1653). They were raised by his brother Charles.


  1. ^ Sigrid-Maria Größing, Leidenschaftliches Habsburg, Verlag A&M


  • Heinrich Benedikt (1957), "Burgau, Andreas", Neue Deutsche Biographie (NDB) (in German), 3, Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, pp. 43–44; (full text online)
  • Margot Rauch: Karl von Burgau und Kardinal Andreas von Österreich, in: Philippine Welser & Anna Caterina Gonzaga: Die Gemahlinnen Erzherzog Ferdinands II., catalogue for an exhibition, Innsbruck, 1998
  • Margot Rauch: Kardinal Andreas von Österreich, in: Ambras — Das Schloss der Philippine Welser, permanent presentation, Innsbruck, 2007
  • Eduard Widmoser: Kardinal Andreas von Österreich, Markgraf von Burgau (1558-1600), in: Lebensbilder aus dem Bayerischen Schwaben, vol. 4, Munich, 1955, p. 249-259.
  • Constantin von Wurzbach: [1], in: Biographisches Lexikon des Kaiserthums Oesterreich

External linksEdit

Margrave Andrew of Burgau
Born: 15 June 1558 Died: 12 November 1600
Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Mark Sittich von Hohenems Altemps
Bishop of Constance
Succeeded by
John George of Hallwyl
Preceded by
John Thomas of Spauer
Bishop of Brixen
Succeeded by
Christopher Andrew of Spauer