October 26, 1897
The Berlin newspaper, Tageblatt, reports the reason for Nicholas II's refusal to receive the Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Baden at Darmstadt on Saturday. This was due to the "sarcastic comments" made by the Grand Duke after the Empress Alexandra converted to the Orthodox faith. The former Princess Alix of Hesse and By Rhine, a Lutheran, joined the Orthodox church prior to her marriage to Nicholas. The Russian Czar is required to marry a royal who is is a member of the Orthodox church.
However, the Franfurter Zeitung states that the Tsar's snub was due to the fact that the Crown Prince of Baden had wooed the Empress' sister, Elisabeth, but his proposal had been rejected. Elisabeth is married to Nicholas' uncle, Grand Duke Serge.
A semi-official statement was issued in Darmstadt today "denies that there is any "political signififance" in the Czar's reply to the Grand Duke's desire to meet with him in Darmstadt.
Karlsruhe's Official Gazette noted that that Nicholas' reply to the Grand Duke implied "that he had already made arrangements every day before his departure from Darmstadt," and would not be able to meet with the Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Baden.
Friedrich I, Grand Duke of Baden, is married to Princess Luise of Prussia, sister of the late Wilhelm I of Germany. Their son, Friedrich, married Princess Hilda of Nassa in 1885, a year after Princess Elisabeth married Grand Duke Serge.