Maria Theresa was a very intelligent, pious and dedicated enlightened despot. Her warm personality and strength of will won her the loyalty of her subjects, to whom she appealed directly in moments of crisis. She led her country with a conviction that she held a trust from God, and with a maternal conception. Maria Theresa suffered a great loss, the sudden and unexpected death of her beloved husband in 1765. Her love for him was so deep that she wore black mourning clothes until her own death in 1780. Although when she came to the throne, her state appeared on the brink of dismemberment, Maria Theresa provided a strong foundation for the continuation of the Habsburg Dynasty into the modern era.