Gregory Brown
513 Agnes Arnold Hall
Department of Philosophy
University of Houston
Houston, TX 77204-3004

Karl VII.
(Charles VII.)

Elector of Bavaria (1726-1745)
Holy Roman Emperor (1742-1745)

born Aug. 6, 1697
died Jan. 20, 1745, Munich

also called Karl Albrecht

elector of Bavaria (1726–45), who was elected Holy Roman emperor (1742–45) in opposition to the Habsburg Maria Theresa's husband, Francis, grand duke of Tuscany.

Succeeding to the Bavarian throne in 1726, Karl Albrecht renounced any claims to the Austrian succession when he recognized the emperor Karl VI's Pragmatic Sanction that established the Emperor's daughter Maria Theresa as heiress of the Habsburg dominions. Karl Albrecht, however, maintained mental reservations since his wife was the daughter of the emperor Joseph I, and the Bavarian Wittelsbach claim to the throne was a legitimate one.

On the death of Karl VI in 1740, Karl Albrecht immediately joined the alliance against Maria Theresa and, with the aid of Prussia and France, was crowned as Emperor Karl VII in February 1742. But even while he was being crowned, Bavaria was overrun by Austrian troops. A mere puppet in the hands of the anti-Austrian coalition, he was restored by Prussia and France to his Bavarian lands in 1744 but died only three months later.

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