At 11:00 am on

Sunday 28th June 1914

the Austrian Archduke Franz Ferdinand was driving from Sarajevo City Hall when his driver mistakenly turned right onto Franz Josef street. The car had to stop and be pushed back onto Appel Quay.

Gavrilo Princip, the third conspirator to attempt the assassination, was waiting on the corner. He fired two rounds from a Browning FN M1910 semi-automatic pistol.

One of the rounds passed through the door of the vehicle, hitting the Archduke’s wife Sophie in the abdomen, severing her stomach artery. The other had hit Franz Ferdinand in the jugular vein. Both passengers were confirmed dead half an hour later.


The murder of Franz Ferdinand is one of the seminal moments of 20th Century European history, sparking the July Crisis that led to the First World War. A vast number of key world events can be traced back to the incident.