Wednesday, October 29, 2008

"little royal tyrant forced to apologize"

October 29, 1910

Miss Cowen, who is the English governess to the children of the king and queen of Italy, has related a story about one of her charges, Crown Prince Umberto.
The six-year-old prince "has much determination and a great strength of character with a strong tendency to over-rule all those whom he has come in contact with."
The royal family were on a holiday at the beach when Queen Elena reminded her children to not jump in and out of a boat that was moored by the beach.
Little barefoot Umberto did not listen, and he started jumping in and out of the boat. He fell and got hurt. He ran to his mother for comfort, but the queen, who "had forbidden this particular game, scolded the little Prince for disobedience."
When the servants arrived on the scene with a basket of oranges, the queen divided the fruit among the children, except Umberto. She gave his share to the son of one of the royal gamekeepers.
Umberto "tremulous with rage and unable to control his anger" attacked the little boy, grabbed the orange and threw it into the water.
Queen Elena, who witnessed the royal tantrum, ordered that Umberto be sent back home. She would deal with him later.
That evening at dinner, the queen told her husband about Umberto's behavior. The following morning, the king sent for his son, and gave Umberto the option of apologizing to the gamekeeper's son or being deprived of candy for one week. Umberto chose to give up the candy.
However, after lunch, the little prince set aside two oranges, and without telling anyone, went back to the beach, where he met up with the gamekeeper's son, and gave him the fruit.

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