Monday, January 12, 2009

Coburg Prince must find a wife or lose estate

January 12, 1929

Prince Philipp Josias of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha has only seven months left to marry or he will lose an estate of more than 200,000 acres, spread out through all the countries of the former Austro-Hungarian empire. The estate includes "several towns and villages," as well as nearly 100 castles to chose to live in.
Twice the prince has had his wedding date postponed. According to the will of Prince August of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, Philipp was to have married before his twenty-first birthday. But when he found he could not comply with the conditions, he asked the Hungarian court marshall for an extension until 1926. But when he could not find a suitable bride, he asked for a further extension until August 1929. No further extensions will be granted.
If Prince Philip does not marry a woman of equal rank by August, he will forfeit the estate to Prince Cyril of Bulgaria.
Prince Philipp Josias is described as "quiet, earnest minded and dislikes society." He has a few hobbies, "such as cartooning and composing impromptu pieces on his famous antique piano."
Prince Cyril is "quiet different" from his cousin. He is "big-hearted, jolly and loves dancing and society."
The value of the Coburg estate is "almost inestimable." The Coburg palace in Budapest "alone are rooms full of historic pieces which would fetch hundreds of thousands of dollars in New York."
Prince Philipp Josias will celebrate his 29th birthday on August 18. He is the fifth child and third son of the late Prince August of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, who died in 1922, and Archduchess Karoline of Austria. Philipp Josias' eldest brother, August, died at the age of thirteen in 1909. His second brother, Prince Rainer is divorced from a Hungarian noblemwoman, Edith Karolyi de Karolyi-Patty, by whom he has one son.
The family descends from Prince August of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha who married Princess Clementine of Orleans. Their eldest son, Philipp, was married to Princess Louise of Belgium. They had one son, Leopold, who died unmarried in 1916. August and Clementine's second son, Prince August, was married to Leopoldina of Brazil. Prince Philipp Josias is their grandson. Will he find a bride in time to save the family estate from Cyril of Bulgaria, who is the younger son of the former King Ferdinand of Bulgaria, who is the youngest son of the Prince August and Princess Clementine.

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