Prince Eugene of Savoy is regarded as one of the most important military commanders and statesmen in Austrian history. He entered the service of the Habsburgs in 1683 and rapidly advanced to become commander-in-chief of the imperial army, securing a number of major victories over the Ottoman Empire and in the War of Spanish Succession. Over the years he became a figurehead for the Austrian Army. He sealed his reputation among the general population with his capture of Belgrade, an exploit immortalized in the folksong ‘Prince Eugene, the noble knight’.
In addition, Prince Eugene was one of the most important patrons of art and science in Vienna during the Baroque era: his Belvedere summer palace in Vienna or his country seat Schloss Hof are among the major creations of the Austrian Baroque, while his precious collection of books is one of the jewels in the crown of the Austrian National Library.