Ing. Karel Mornstein-Zierotin

* 1939

  • “It was not really promoted back then. I never said it loud at school or at high school, the fact that we had had property, that we come from an aristocratic family, and that we were bereft of everything. I took it as our personal matter that I don’t have to boast about.”

  • “Mum’s cousin Podstatský of Litenčice was put in prison arbitrarily. He spent three years in detention. There was virtually no accusation, and all his property was confiscated in the meantime. Then when Gottwald died and Zápotocký came, he was released upon having to sign a document to the effect that all measures taken thus far remain valid, including the confiscation of property of course. So as a result he spent three years in prison for nothing and lost all his property. But he was a patriot who had demonstrably supported the guerrillas and the resistance – and this is what he got.”

  • “The local agile communists arranged for almost all rooms to be sealed. As a result, my grandmother and my mother’s sister – my aunt – lived in the rooms that were left on the ground floor. Or course their life was not very pleasant. They [communists] placed as many restrictions on them as they could, so it was not joyous for them at all.”

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    Bludov, 11.07.2013

    duration: 01:39:25
    media recorded in project Stories of 20th Century
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Through communism with blue blood

Karel Mornstein Zierotin in 2013
Karel Mornstein Zierotin in 2013
photo: Vít Lucuk

Karel Mornstein-Zierotin was born in Brno in 1939. He is a descendant of two ancient noble families and, together with Richard Belcredi, he is the only nobleman from the Olomouc Region to have returned to the family estate after 1989. His ancestors in the Mornstein family were members of the official/military gentry from the 19th century and his ancestors from the Zierotin family owned the Bludov chateau near Šumperk. The chateau was confiscated after the war but the Zierotins were not expulsed with other Germans and the witness’ parents would not emigrate. The family then lived poorly in Brno and Karel Mornstein-Zierotin was not allowed to study history. As a civil engineer, Karel Mornstein-Zierotin was later assigned to Košice where he worked until 1993. That is also where he met his wife. He asked for the restitution of his property after 1989, which he received after years of court trials.