Duke Karl-Theodor in Bavaria (9 August 1839 – 30 November 1909) was a member of the House of Wittelsbach and a professional oculist. He was the brother of the Empress Elisabeth of Austria, and father of Queen Elisabeth of the Belgians .
Karl-Theodor was born at Possenhofen Castle, the third son of Duke Maximilian in Bavaria and of his wife, Princess Ludovika of Bavaria.
At the age of fourteen Karl-Theodor joined the Bavarian Army. In 1866 he fought in the Austro-Prussian War. When he left active duty, he became a student at the Ludwig Maximilians University of Munich, where he studied philosophy, law, economics, and medicine. Among his teachers were the chemist Justus von Liebig, the pathologist Ludwig von Buhl, and the physicist Philipp von Jolly.
In 1870 Karl-Theodor's studies were interrupted by the Franco-Prussian War in which he served as a proprietary colonel of the 3rd Bavarian Light Horse. After the war he returned to his studies. In 1872 he was named an honorary Doctor of Medicine by the Ludwig Maximilians University; the following year he completed the requirements for the degree. Then he studied ophthalmology under Professor Deutschland and continued his education under Professor Arlt in Vienna and Professor Horner in Zürich.
In 1877 Karl-Theodor began practicing medicine in Mentone on the Côte d'Azur, often assisted by his wife Maria Josepha. In 1880 he opened an eye-clinic in his castle at Tegernsee. In 1895 he founded the Augenklinik Herzog Carl Theodor (English: Duke Charles Theodore Eye Clinic) in Munich; the clinic in the Nymphenburger Strasse remains one of the most respected eye clinics in Bavaria to the present day. Between 1895 and 1909 Carl Theodor personally carried out more than 5,000 cataract operations as well as treating countless other eye disorders.
Karl-Theodor received a number of honours:
honorary doctor of the University of Louvain.
honorary colonel of the 5th Regiment of Prussian Dragoons.
honorary member of the Academy of Medical Sciences in Brussels.
knight of the Order of Saint Hubert.
knight of the Order of the Golden Fleece (1862).
knight of the Order of the Black Eagle.
Karl-Theodor died at Kreuth in 1909. He is buried in the family crypt in Schloss Tegernsee.
Karl-Theodor and his second wife, Infanta Maria Josepha of Portugal, 1890
Marriages and family
On 11 February 1865, at Dresden, Karl-Theodor married his first cousin Princess Sophie of Saxony (1845–1867), daughter of King John of Saxony and his maternal aunt Princess Amalie Auguste of Bavaria. They had one child:
Duchess Amalie in Bavaria (1865–1912); married Wilhelm, Duke of Urach.
On 29 April 1874, at Kleinheubach, Karl-Theodor married Infanta Maria Josepha of Portugal (1857–1943), daughter of exiled King Miguel I of Portugal and Princess Adelaide of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg. They had five children:
Duchess Sophie Adelheid in Bavaria (1875–1957); married Count Hans Veit zu Törring-Jettenbach; their son married Princess Elizabeth of Greece and Denmark.
Duchess Elisabeth in Bavaria (1876–1965); married King Albert I of Belgium.
Duchess Marie Gabrielle in Bavaria (1878–1912), married Rupprecht, Crown Prince of Bavaria.
Duke Ludwig Wilhelm in Bavaria (1884–1968), married Princess Eleonore zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg.
Duke Franz Joseph in Bavaria (1888–1912)
Ancestors of Karl Theodor, Duke in Bavaria
16. John, Count Palatine of Birkenfeld-Gelnhausen
8. Duke Wilhelm in Bavaria
17. Wildgravine and Rhinegravine Sophie Charlotte of Dhaun
4. Duke Pius August in Bavaria
18. Count Palatine Frederick Michael of Zweibrücken (= 12)
9. Countess Palatine Maria Anna of Zweibrücken-Birkenfeld
19. Countess Palatine Maria Franziska of Sulzbach (= 13)
2. Maximilian Joseph, Duke in Bavaria
20. Charles, Duke of Arenberg
10. Louis-Marie, Duke of Arenberg
21. Louise Margarete de la Marck-Schleiden, Countess of Vardes
5. Princess Amélie Louise of Arenberg
22. Louis Joseph de Mailly, Marquis of Nesle
11. Marie Adélaïde Julie de Mailly
23. Adélaïde Julie d'Hautefort
1. Duke Karl-Theodor in Bavaria
24. Christian III, Count Palatine of Zweibrücken
12. Count Palatine Frederick Michael of Zweibrücken
25. Caroline of Nassau-Saarbrücken
6. Maximilian I Joseph of Bavaria
26. Joseph Karl Emanuel August, Count Palatine of Sulzbach
13. Countess Palatine Maria Franziska of Sulzbach
27. Countess Palatine Elizabeth Augusta Sophie of Neuburg
3. Princess Ludovika of Bavaria
28. Charles Frederick, Grand Duke of Baden
14. Charles Louis, Hereditary Prince of Baden
29. Landgravine Karoline Luise of Hesse-Darmstadt
7. Caroline of Baden
30. Louis IX, Landgrave of Hesse-Darmstadt
15. Landgravine Amalie of Hesse-Darmstadt
31. Countess Palatine Caroline of Zweibrücken
Karl Theodor, Duke in Bavaria, with his sister Elisabeth at 11 years old, and their dog "Bummerl" at Possenhofen Castle