Shelved Dolls: Empress Sisi – Possibly The Strangest Woman That Ever Lived

What I essentially knew about Sisi before beginning “all Sisi reading, all the time” week was that she was a very unhappy woman who had a difficult relationship with food. She didn’t eat, basically, and she exercised for hours and hours. Now, I think being in the public eye is the kind of situation that would give many women a bit of a complex about food. I do not, truth be told, know a single woman who seems to have a completely untroubled relationship with food, and they are not largely in the public eye so I figured, “Great. This is someone a lot of readers will be able to relate to.”

No. I was wrong. This is someone no one can relate to.

Actually, that’s not true, either.

I guess I’m asking just how quirky you are. Like, really, human hair – do you collect it? Do you periodically slip your co-workers mean poems about themselves? Is that how you communicate with people? Angry poetry writing? What’s your relationship with your hairdresser like? How many slaves did you have growing up?

Maybe you are the person who is really going to “get” Sisi. I kind of hope you are. I think that she seems like the most difficult woman I can imagine, but, hell, I like her anyway.

So. Who was Sisi?

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    • Lizzie

      Given that Albert II of Belgium is still alive and king of Belgium today, it’s pretty safe to say you got that one wrong. Way to check your sources!

      • Jennifer Wright

        You’re right, it’s Albert I of Belgium.

      • Kat

        Actually, it would’ve been Leopold I.

      • Trish

        Jeez….do you have to be so nasty? Mistakes happen.

    • NeuroNerd

      The Emperor of Austria was supposed to marry one of Crazy Duke Maximilian Joseph of Bavaria’s daughters because they were first cousins–their mothers were sisters. Franz Joseph’s mother believed she could better “control” her niece.

    • Kate

      Love this, as I love all the Shelved Dolls series. Please never ever stop writing them!

      • Nancy

        Seconded!

    • Lynn

      actually the slug this is very popular in Asia, well it’s more snail than slugs. It’s called snail cream and it brightens the skin…check it out.
      But loved this articles, I love history especially weird history!

    • Lizzie (A Different One)

      I wonder where/how that type of personality would fit in nowadays. It seems like people have forgotten how to be properly eccentric. You never hear about celebrities strapping themselves to the front of ships- the most scandalous things they ever do is get married or cut off their hair. Tabloids would be so much more interesting if Sisi were around.

    • Cee

      There are pictures of her. She is so beautiful and such a tiny waist! It’s sad that she was murdered by someone who just wanted to kill a royal who wasn’t there and settled for her.

      • linda

        Please don’t judge all anarchists by the actions of a few idiots who use the name in vain – like all people, most of us abhor violence of any sort. Viva les Sisis! Viva les Dianas! Viva Daphne Guinness and viva Paris Hilton!

    • Amanda

      Thank you so much for writing about Sisi! So many people don’t know about her, and that lonely woman deserves some acknowledgement. Her story always saddens and jolts me; it’s incredible how relevant her problems are today.

    • lola

      Demel, not ‘Demsel’ is the patisserie in Vienna. They still make the candied violets, no chocolate just candied, and sell them in the most beautiful boxes.

      http://www.demel.at/en/frames/index_shop_geschenksservice.htm

    • linda

      Ms Wright this is the first article of yours I’ve read, and OH BOY! can the goil write! Loves it and itching for the next. xoxo

    • Lerie

      I imagine this is how Victoria Beckham maintains her lithe figure.

      • Jennifer Wright

        Secret duck blood vat. The Sun should really be on that.

    • Molly

      This series would make a great book. Any plans?

      • Jennifer Wright

        I am excited to accept you as my personal assistant! Please find an agent and publisher for me forthwith (I think Random House just seems more accessible than St. Martin’s, but either is okay by me!) You will be paid in glory and hilarious Miranda Priestly impressions.

    • Kate

      I really love reading this series

    • محمد عبد الكريم

      انها سيسى امرأة جميلة
      ولكن على حد علمى انها كانت
      تحتقن فى الوريد بالماكس لانها كانت مدمنة ياللهول

    • Miss M

      Love the series, but I’m pretty sure that the Ottoman Empire was “the sick man of Europe.”

      • Kat

        Yep, it was. I agree though, cool series!

    • Jules

      Sooo this is a ham that I saw at a supermarket in Romania recently. I have absolutely NO idea what Sisi has to do with ham!

      Under her picture is says that “Sissi is a very fine ham” :P

    • Kat

      Great article! And yes, it’s pretty much said that the Emperor gave her a venereal disease shortly after they were married, which had a huge impact on their marriage, naturally. History would end up repeating itself when their son, Crown Prince Rudolf gave HIS wife, Princess Stephanie, VD, and in this case, she was left unable to have anymore children.