Saturday, October 29, 2011

The pumpkin awaits

I left Bucharest this morning.  After breakfast, I walked to a local park on Reina Elisabeth and then back through the old town.  Outside McDonalds, I was approached by one of the local dogs.   The young pooch came right up to me, jumped up, rather friendly (I was scared for an instant, but the dog's tail was wagging.)  I think the dog said to me: Hey, can you go into McDonald's and get me something.  I think the dog knew I was an American tourist.

Sucker that I am,  I went into McDonald's and bought a sausage biscuit.  The dog ate the sausage patty, but not the egg or the bread.  After finishing the meal, the dog looked at me, smiled (I think), and happily ran to catch a bus.   Really, the dog got on the bus with human passengers. 

I could not get my camera out in time,  but  I was laughing all the way back to the InterContinental. 

The dog got on the bus!

Now in Amsterdam.   I took an evening canal cruise.  Quite a warm day and night!   Back home tomorrow, and work on Monday.

What is all this nonsense about snow?

Friday, October 28, 2011

Last Day in Bucharest ..

Well I spent most of today in Sinaia.  A car from the palace picked me up at 9 a.m.  Gorgeous fall day,  It was about a two hour drive to Sinaia, up and up into the Carpathian Mountains.  We also passed the Ploesti oil fields.

A wonderful tour of both palaces.  Most people skip Pelesor, which is smaller than Peles Castle, but just as interesting.

Most of my post have been written after two a.m, after the events and a night cap in the hotel bar.  What fun.  Early afternoon flight to Amsterdam tomorrow, where I stay overnight and then a early afternoon flight to D.C.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Bucharest Day 5

At 9:20 this morning, a car picked me up to take me to Elisabeta Palace to see three investure ceremonies. 
Ilie Natase being honored by king

Most of the announcements were in Romanian, but I did pick up on one of the final presentations.  I heard the word Sport and Natase, and I asked one of the TV reporters if it was the tennis player, Ilie Natase, and it was.



Now off to Cotroceni Palace for a tour, and then dinner with Diana Mandache.  Tomorrow, I am getting a car and driver from the palace and going to Sinaia!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Bucharest Day 4

I was interviewed on Romanian Television today when leaving the Elisabeta Palace.    The brunch was fab. Queen Sofia brought her cute little Yorkie, Tipsy, with her, and Tipsy spent a lot time on Queen Anne's lap.

Wine, coffee, quiches, cakes, fruit and, of course, birthday cake.   What an awesome place to visit - this is where Michael was forced to abdicate in 1947.  

Took a massive amount of photos, and a small selection will go up later, but right now I am off to the History Museum, and then come back to change for the theatre and dinner with the Royal Family and other guests.  Tomorrow a reception at the palace, and that's it for events. On Friday, the entire Royal Family return Switzerland,  and I head to Sinaia.  One of the Crown Princess's drivers will be taking me.

Tonight we attended a performance of Royal Fashion, and had a Roumanian dinner at the Bure Bista restaurant.

Bucharest Day 3



Regele Mihai!  Regele Mihai!   This was the cry of people gathered outside the Parliament in the morning, when King Michael, the former head of state, was accorded the rare privilege of speaking before the Romanian Parliament on the occasion of his 90th birthday yesterday.

Yesterday morning, the guests of the King, who are staying at the InterContinental, gathered in the Modigliani Room for breakfast and to watch the speech on large screen TV.   Queen Sofia of Spain was one of the guests, and she sat with her cousin, Princess Tatiana Radziwill and her husband, Dr. Fruchaud.

At 6 p.m.,  we gathered in the lobby to await transportation to the Opera House for the Gala concert in honor of King Michael.  The non-royal guests traveled by bus, and the royals were transported by cars.

The King and Queen of Sweden were delayed in the United States and could not attend the gala.  From what I understand,  the King's plans had changed, regardless, as he planned to attend the funeral of the Saudi Crown Prince.  Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine of Serbia arrived at 5 p.m., walking into the elevator as I was coming out.  They had traveled from Chicago to London and then to Bucharest.

(Some wonder about the British.  The Prince of Wales was invited.  He was in Romania several months ago, and visited the Royal Family at the Elisabeta Palace.  The InterContinental is already crawling with security.  The Prince of Wales' presence would have made it a nightmare for all the guests. )


I chatted with newlyweds Prince Georg Friedrich and Princess Sophie of Prussia, and both are very tall.  They were joined by the Princess' sister, Archduchess Katharina and her husband, Archduke Martin of Austria.  I also met Princess Margaretha of Luxembourg for the first time.  

The royal guests included the Grand Duke of Luxembourg, Prince Guillaume and Princess Sibilla of Luxembourg, the duke and duchess of Braganza (really sweet people), Archduke Georg and Archduchess Eilika, both still in mourning for Georg's father, Archduke Otto, who died several months ago.

At the Opera House, we sat in the boxes below the Royal Box ... if you see the TV clip I am in the third box from the right and below the king.)  The concert featured arias, solos and duets from Tosca, La Boheme, the Merry Widow and La Figaro by Romanian opera stars, Nelly Mirciioiu, Vlad Mirta and Teodor Ilincai.  I got chills when Teodor Ilincai sang Nessun Dorma from Turundot.

From there we went to dinner at the Palace of the Savings Bank of Romania.  The dinner was held in the ornate library.  I was at the King's Table, and my dinner partners were the Czech Ambassador to Romania and The King's private secretary.

The meal consisted toasts with a variety of Romanian wines.  We also sang "Happy Birthday" to the King.   The meal included a salmon pate, a main course of beef, and a wonderful chocolate dessert.  All the woman received a commemorate plate and the men were given a commemorative medal.

Near midnight, the cars and buses returned to the hotel, where many guests gathered in the bar.   I joined Prince Vladimir and Princess Brigitte of Serbia,  Grand Duke George of Russia, Grand Duchess Maria of Russia,  Baron Axel de Samboucy de Sorgue, son of Princess Chantal of France, and Prince Bernhard of Baden.
The Duke and Duchess of Braganza sat at another table with Georg and Eilika,  Martin and Katharina, and Friedrich and Marie of Wurttemberg.  Georg Friedrich and Sophie were at another table. 

Prince Georg Friedrich and Princess Sophie, along with her sister and brother-in-law, and the Wurttembergs were leaving at 7:30 in the morning to attend the 50th birthday party of the Prince of Wied, who is married to Sophie's sister, Isabelle.

Off to breakfast now and then  brunch at the Elisabeta Palace.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Elevators

Down with Margaretha of Luxembourg, up with Bernhard and Stephanie of Baden.  Down with Dominik Lowenstein, and getting out at Lobby,  Georg Friedrich and Sophie of Prussia getting in with their luggage ... with an hour to go

Back from the hairdresser

...and arriving at the hotel - King Simeon and the Duke of Aosta ....

Off to get hair done ..

The guests of King Michael who have checked in already  ... we were invited to breakfast this morning in the Modigliani room and watch the live coverage of King Michael's speech before the Romanian Parliament.

The Duke and Duchess of Braganza asked me to join them at their table.  I spoke with the Queen of Spain, the Margrave and Margravine of Baden,  Prince and Princess Ludwig of Baden,  Archduke and Archduchess Dominic of Austria,  Archduchess Maria Magdalene of Austria and her husband, Baron Hans von Holzhausen and Princess Tatiana Radziwill and her husband, Dr. Fruchard. 

Now off to the hairdresser.

Monday, October 24, 2011

King Michael to speak before Romanian parliament

For the first time since 1947, King Michael will speak to the Romanian parliament tomorrow - Tuesday -- on the occasion of his 90th  birthday!

A number of members of Parliament as well as the Prime Minister Traian Basescu will not attend  the speech.  Basescu has said that Michael's decision to abdicate was "an act of betrayal," that he was a "Russian servant," and a "ex-king."

Memo to Romanian Prime  Minister:  your history is a little shaky.  Michael was hardly a servant of the Russians.  When he singlehandedly overthrough Ion Antonescu and his fascist regime, he brought Romania onto the side of the Allies in the last world war.  But that meant, Romania would have to welcome Soviet soldiers, not Americans or British.  The Allies had already decided that the Balkans would be in the Soviet sphere of influence.  At no time did Michael ever desire the Soviets.

As for the abdication:  it is really difficult to fight when Communists have a gun to your head, and have brought their troops to surround the palace. The abdication was not voluntary.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-15440501

Crown Princess Mary in NYC

and covered in the New York Times, which rarely covers royals in NYC (unless one is the heir to the British throne or the British sovereign)

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/24/nyregion/princess-mary-of-denmark-visits-queens.html

The Guest list

The complete guest list includes the non-royals as well ... including  Ms. Marlene Koenig


Royal Family of Romania


Their Majesties the King and Queen

TRH Crown Princess Margarita and Prince Radu

HRH The Princess Helena and HE Mr Alexander Phillips Nixon

HRH The Princess Irina and Mr John Wesley Walker

HRH The Princess Marie

HRH Prince Nicholas

Miss Elisabeta Karina de Roumanie

Royal Guests

Austria


TIRH Archduke Georg and Archduchess Eilika of Austria

TIRH Archduke Martin and Archduchess of Austria

TIRH Archduke Dominic and Archduchess Nella of Austria

HIRH Archduchess Maria Magdalena of Austria and Baron Hanns Ulrich von Holzhausen



Belgium


HRH Princess Alexandre of Belgium

Bulgaria

His Majesty The King of the Bulgarians


France


Baron Axel de Sambucy de Sorgue

Germany


TIRH Prince Georg Friedrich and Princess Sophie of Prussia

TRH The Markgraf and Markgraffin of Baden

TRH The Hereditary Duke and Duchess of Württemberg

TRH Prince Bernhard and Princess of Baden

TRH Prince Ludwig and Princess of Baden

HRH Prince Ludwig of Bavaria


Greece

HRH The Princess Irini of Greece

Italy


TRH The Prince and Princess of Savoia, Duke and Duchess of Aosta

Jordan


HRH Princess Muna al Hussein of Jordan

TRH Prince El Hassan bin Talal and Princess Sarvath of Jordan

HRH Princess Rym al Ali of Jordan


Liechtenstein


HRH Princess Margarita of Liechtenstein

HSH Princess Isabelle of Liechtenstein


Luxembourg


HRH The Grand Duke of Luxembourg

TRH Prince Guillaume and Princess Sibilla of Luxembourg


Montenegro


HRH Crown Prince Nicholas of Montenegro

Portugal


TRH The Duke and Duchess of Braganza


Russia


HIH Grand Duchess Maria of Russia

HIH Grand Duke George of Russia

Serbia

TRH Crown Prince Alexander II and Crown Princess Katherine of Serbia and Yugoslavia

TRH Prince Vladimir and Princess Brigitte of Yugoslavia

Spain

Her Majesty The Queen of Spain

Sweden

Their Majesties The King and Queen of Sweden

Countess Madeleine Bernadotte Kogevinas


And



HSH Prince Karel Schwarzenberg, minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic

HSH Princess Tatiana Radziwill, Mrs. Fruchaud, and Dr. John Fruchaud

HH Princess Anne of Ligne, Mrs. de Fabribeckers de Cortils et Grâce, and Mr Charles de Fabribeckers de Cortils et Grâce

TSH Prince Wenceslas and Princess Armelle of Lobkowicz

TSH Prince Wilhelm and Princess Ilona of Schaumburg Lippe

TSH Fürst Alois Konstantin and Prince Dominic of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg

more guests

King Simeon of the Bulgarians has checked in!  Archduke Dominic of Austria, son of the late Princess Ileana, is coming in tonight.

Just bought a salad for dinner and plan on eating it in the lobby  :)

Royal engagement confirmed: Lowenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg and ...

Countess Olga zu Castell-Rudenhausen  ..  no date set yet.


I rode in the elevator with The Prince of Lowenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg, and asked the Prince if Dominik was engaged.  The engagement is official.


Countess Olga is the eldest daughter of Johann Friedrich, Prince of Castell-Rudenhausen, and his wife, Countess Maria of Schonborn-Wiesentheid.   Olga Graziella was born January 31, 1987 at Wurzburg.

Johann Friedrich's sister,  Donata, is the mother of Prince Georg Friedrich of Prussia.

Guests for gala

I just talked with HSH The Prince of Lowenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg in the lobby.  He is here until tomorrow morning, and will not be attending the gala.  His son, Prince Dominik, is the family representative at the event.

King Michael and his family were guests at lunch today held at the National Bank.  Men with huge Uzis were guarding the bank. 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Bucharest Day One



After getting in after midnight, I slept in, had breakfast at the hotel, and took a  better look at the nice gifts left in the room: two bottles of Princess Margareta wine in a classy wooden box,  a book on King Michael and The King's Music, a CD. 

Walked from the hotel to the Regina Elisabeta Blvd and over to the Calea Victoriei.   The Royal Palace is on this street.   The palace houses two museums, one for European art and other for Romanian art.  The majority of the European collection comes from Carol I, who left his collection to the Romanian people when he died in 1914.  Art belonging to the royal family also mak es up a large portion of what is on display.  This latter collection was acquired in 1948.  Let's just say members of the Royal Family did not give the paintings and sculpture to the nation.

I wanted to take a few photos of the interior, but the museum charges 50 leis for the privilege. Passed on that.  There are several portraits and busts of Carol I,  as well as a large photo of the unveiling of the King Carol I on a horse statue across the street.  This ceremony took place in 1935, I think.

Got a gorgeous bouquet of flowers this evening from the King's advisor, apologizing for not being at the airport to welcome me ... they had the wrong flight information and were there at the wrong time  ...

Arrived!!!!! What's today?

I left Washington, D.C., on Friday at 6 p.m., and thanks to the tail winds, I got to Amsterdam before 7 a.m.   My main suitcase was checked through to Bucharest, but I still had my laptop and carry bag to put into a locker for the day.

Train in Amsterdam took about 15 minutes.  I started out (after having one or two large coffees) at the Centraal Station and walked to the Anne Frank house.  One of the most moving and emotional experiences ever for me.

I also toured the palace, got a free hug from an Occupy Amsterdam protester (they were marching through the Dan square), went to the Flower Market,  had a  beer in a cafe by a canal, looked at the oldest church in Amsterdam, which meant I had to walk through the Red light district.    Yes, women were on display.  There was also a funny smell wafting out of some of the coffee shops, and it was not vanilla latte.

Left Amsterdam at 8:30 p.m., and arrived in Bucharest after midnight.  The trip did not take three hours:  I gained another hour.

It is overcast on Sunday morning.  More guests are expected today at the hotel including Prince Hassan and Princess Sarvath of Jordan,  Queen Sofia of Spain, and Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine. 

Further updates later.  I am going to the pool.

(I just tried the spell check .. all my words are wrong, apparently, as Blogger has converted to Romanian.)

Thursday, October 20, 2011

King Michael - a photo display


King Michael and his American jeep
King George II with Princes Philip and Michael



Washington, D.C. 1991

Washington, D.C.  Photo by Marlene A. Eilers Koenig

King Michael of Romania

Crown Princess Helen of Romania gave birth to her only child, a son, Michael, on October 25, 1921 at the Foishor, Sinaia.   On October 25, 2011,  King Michael will celebrate his 90th birthday with a gala dinner and events at the Elisabeta Palace.

State wedding canceled for the Duke of Gloucester

October 20, 1935

Due to the death of the Duke of Buccleuch, "all arrangements for the state wedding" for the Duke's daughter, Lady Alice Montagu-Douglas-Scott, to the Duke of Gloucester, third son of King George V and Queen Mary, have been canceled, according to press reports.
Only members of the British royal family and Lady Alice's relatives will attend a private ceremony at Buckingham Palace on November 6.  The wedding had been scheduled to take place at Westminster Abbey.
Men will now wear morning dress, and not "brilliant uniforms." 

Charlotte of Schwarzburg celebrates her 96th birthday

October 20, 1911

Princess Charlotte of Schwarzburg, the "oldest scion of European royalty, has just celebrated her ninety-sixth birthday," writes the Marquise de Fontenoy.  The Princess celebrated the event at her country home in Switzerland, not far from Berne, "towards the Fribourg border."    Her home is remote, secluded, and not on a railroad line.  She is "almost forgotten by the public," but more than "fifty years ago, the romance of her marriage created a world wide sensation."  

The princess is a member of the sovereign house of Schwarzburg, a grant aunt of the present prince.   When she was a young girl, she spent many days "passionately fond of Alpine climbing," a sport to which she had become very adept.  

In one of her climbing excursions, she suffered an accident, and her life was saved "by the most wonderful presence of mind, muscular strength, and pluck of her Alpine guide, who narrowly escaped being dragged down the precipice," where the princess had already disappeared, suspended by a rope, "the other end of which was fastened to him."

The young guide, Johann Jud,  managed not only to "withstand the shock of her fall," but he was able to pull the princess to safety "with the utmost difficulty," to the risk of "himself slipping."

Princess Charlotte "naturally was filled with sentiments of gratitude" toward the guide, who happened to a very handsome man, and "possessed of sufficient education to qualify him for a commission in the military of his Canton.   She was determined "to prove her gratitude" by marrying the man.

The Princess was 40 years old at the time, and ten years the guide's senior.  But she was still "good looking" and wealthy.  Her family did not share her enthusiasm, and there was a "tremendous outcry" from her royal relatives. 

The reigning Prince of Schwarzenburg eventually gave permission for the marriage, but with the proviso that Princess Charlotte should live abroad with her husband.   As as wedding present, the Prince created a title of baron for Jud.

The marriage turned out to be "far more happily than mesalliances of this kind do as a rule."  The newlyweds bought a "pretty place" in the Canton of Berne.  The baron died after only ten years of marriage, and was "deeply mourned by his widow."   Since his death in 1866, Princess Charlotte has never left her Swiss home.

Princess Charlotte Amalie Friederike Albertine was born September 7, 1816 at Arnstadt.  She was the fourth child of Prince Karl of Schwarzburg-Sonderhausen, and his wife, Princess Güntherine of Scharzburg-Sonderhausen.  (Güntherine was also Karl's niece).
 She married Baron Hans Heinrich von Jud on February 25, 1856 at at Münsingen.   He was born in 1825 and died at Malaga, Spain, on January 13, 1864.   

(Princess Güntherine was the daughter of Prince Friedrich of Schwarzburg-Sonderhausen and his cousin, Princess Friederike of Schwarzburg-Sonderhausen.)

Royal engagement: Bavaria-Spain

October 20, 1905

The betrothal of Prince Ferdinand of Bavaria and Infanta Maria Teresa, sister of King Alfonso XIII, was "formally accomplished today," reports the Chicago Daily Tribune.   The prince went to the royal palace in Madrid today, "where he signed an act of Spanish naturalization in the presence of the royal family."

Tonight, the royal family attened a gala dinner in honor of the betrothal.  The German ambassador attended the dinner as "the representative of Prince Ferdinand."

Infanta Maria Teresa is "much felicitated", and the forthcoming marriage is very popular in Spain.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Grand Duke Vladimir resigns his post in defiance of Emperor Nicholas II

October 19, 1905

An "open quarrel" has ensued between Nicholas II and his uncle Grand Duke Vladimir, following Nicholas' "summary  action in stripping" Vladimir's eldest son, Grand Duke Kirill "of his all his decorations, dismissing him from the army, confiscating his fortune, and exiling him from Russia," reports the Chicago Daily Tribune.

Grand Duke Kirill has incurred the Czar's anger by marrying Victoria Melita of Saxe-Coburg, the divorced wife of the Grand Duke of Hesse and By Rhine, in defiance of Nicholas' wishes and the Russian Orthodox church.  

In return, Vladimir, who supports his son, has resigned his post as chief of the St. Petersburg military district and as "commander in chief of the imperial guard corps."   Nicholas has "dismissed from public service all of Vladimir's friends."

Alfons and Frederica: a forgotten romance




Baron Alfons von Pawel-Rammingen recently suffered a fracture of the skull in a carriage accident, and he is not expected to survive, writes the Marquise de Fontenoy.  His death, she says, " would mark the close of an almost forgotten royal romance," that that began in the final years of the life of King Georg V of Hannover, and "reached a climax a couple years after the demise of this dethroned and exiled monarch, when his favorite daughter, the most beautiful princess of her day, bestowed her hand upon his faithful and devoted aide de camp and secretary,"  Baron Alfons von Pawel-Remmigen.

The Princess, who is now in her late 50s, "remains the stateliest and most impressive figure of old world royalty."   Her "snow white hair" lends "additional distinction to the classic outlines of the features, while years have not impaired the superb carriage nor the elasticity of her bearing."

As as young Princess of Hannover, Frederica received numerous offers of marriage "from royals and imperial personages, Austrian archdukes, Russian Grand Dukes, German sovereigns and princes of every description, the late King Alfonso of Spain, the duke of Connaught, and his brothers, the late dukes of Coburg and Albany, all vainly endeavored to win her hand.

Queen Victoria, who was very fond of her first cousin's daughter, wanted very much to see Frederica wed one of her sons. but Frederica declared that she would not marry while her father was still alive.

Georg V of Hannover became blind after a childhood accident.  Princess Frederica was devoted to her father and she "made it her special mission" to take care of him.   She "guided him through the rooms of his numerous palaces and when he walked abroad."  The princess was always by her father's side, when he went for drives.  She comforted him "with advice and sympathy" following the loss of his kingdom and a "greater part of his fortune, both of which were taken by Prussia in 1866."

Frederica was her father's favorite, and Georg "showed but little affection for his other daughter, Marie, for his son, the duke of Cumberland, or even for his wife," Queen Marie.   All three were said to be resentful toward Frederica.

Two years after her father's death, Frederica, a "great favorite in Vienna, especially with the emperor and empress," was at Windsor when she announced that she would marry Baron von Pawel-Rammingen, "whose principal merit in her eyes and title to her affection, was the devotion he had shown to her father."

Baron Alfons was very handsome, some years older than the princess, and did not have a large fortune.  He belonged to the "lowest rank but one of the nobility.  He had never been favorite of Queen Marie or her son and younger daughter, Marie.   Thus, it was only natural that they "should strongly object to the match."

Frederica's brother, the Duke of Cumberland,  stated publicly that if Frederica disobeyed him and married the baron, he would stop her allowance "from the family fortune to which she was entitled by her father's will and by the statutes of the house of Hanover.
It was then that Queen Victoria stepped in.  She had a "soft place in her sympathetic heart," and came to the Frederica's rescue.   She announced that if the Duke of Cumberland would not provide for her sister, she, as the head of the reigning house of Great Britain, of which Frederica is a member, would give her an allowance of $20,000 a year.   Victoria also gave the princess a residence at Hampton Court, "the major portion of its gardens and of the game preserves being reserved for her use."

Queen Victoria gave the bride away at the wedding at Windsor.   The Duke of Cumberland was furious and protested strongly, describing Victoria's "encouragement of disobedience" of him as head of the House of Hanover.   For many years, he "refrained from holding any intercourse with Windsor Castle."

Eventually King Edward VII and Emperor Alexander III of Russias, whose wives were sister of the Duchess of Cumberland,  affected a reconciliation between the Duke and his sister.  He restored Frederica's allowance, and "turned over to her the back payments."  He also persuaded Queen Marie to forgive Frederica, but neither the Duke nor his mother, would "consent to receive, recognize, or to hold any intercourse whatsoever with the baron."   Each summer, when Frederica would visit her brother and her mother at Gmunden in Austria, she would leave her husband at home.

This has given the impression that the Princess "did not find in her marriage quite all the happiness which she had anticipated."  Perhaps she had time to consider all the sacrifices she had made in order to marry, and marriage to the baron was not what she thought it would be.  The couple's only child died as an infant. 

Baron Alfons, "as a husband, assumed a different tone" to which he had been accustomed to as the King of Hannover's ADC.   No one would have been "quicker to resent this" was Princess Frederica,  "high spirited and keenly conscious of her birth and rank as a member of one of the oldest royal houses of Europe."

Frederica has always been a favorite in England, but her husband "never succeeded in getting himself liked there."  There was never an "actual estrangement" between the couple, but they did not appear, in later years, to be "deeply attached" to eacher other. 

Some years ago, they gave up their residence in England, and divided their time between a house in the Bois de Boulogne in Paris, and a villa in Biarritz. 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Princess Theodora of Greece and Denmark - the Bold, the Beautiful

Actually, Princess Theodora, a Los Angeles-based actress, is to appear on the CBS Soap Opera, The Bold and the Beautiful on December 5, playing Alison, secretary to Bill Spencer.

http://www.tvguide.com/News/Exclusive-Princess-Theodora-1038802.aspx

Monday, October 17, 2011

Archduke Friedrich is ill

October 17, 1879

Archduke Friedrich of Austria is "dangerously ill" with typhoid fever, reports the Chicago Daily Tribune.  The archduke is the brother of Archduchess Marie Christine, who is betrothed to King Alfonso XII of Spain.

Duke of Buccleuch is "seriously ill"

October 17, 1935


The Associated Press is reporting that the Duke of Buccluech, father of Lady Alice Montagu-Douglas-Scott, fiancee of the Duke of Gloucester, "is seriously ill."

The Duke has been in poor health since an operation about a year ago, but his condition is now considered to be grave.  A bulletin issued from his home, Bowhill, in Selkirk, Scotland, states that his "condition is giving rise to serious anxiety."

Lady Alice and the Duke of Gloucester are planning to marry on November 6 at Westminster Abbey.

Ileana attends church, has not eloped

October 17, 1927


Princess Ileana, the youngest daughter of Queen Marie of Rumania, attended church in Bucharest today, following reports that she had "eloped with a naval lieutenant," according to the Associated Press.

Queen Marie, angered by the reports "publishing abroad regarding Ileana's asserted elopement," had previously denied the rumors, telling reporters that since the death of King Ferdinand,  Princess Ileana has "not left her side."

Prayers for the Crown Princess

October 17, 1907

The Superior Consistory of the Lutheran Church in Berlin "has ordered public prayers to begin on Sunday for the safe accouchement" of Crown Princesss Cecilie of Prussia, " reports the New York Times.

The princess is expect to give birth to her second child in the next few weeks.

Duchess Cecilie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin married Crown Prince Wilhelm of Prussia on June 6, 1905.  She gave birth to the couple's first child, Prince Wilhelm, on July 4, 1906.

Kirill & Ducky's marriage formally announced

October 17, 1905


The marriage of Grand Duke Kirill of Russia and Princess Victoria Melita of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha was formally announced today in Coburg, reports the Los Angeles Times.  The couple were married in a Russian Orthodox ceremony on October 8 at Tegernsee, Upper BaVaria.

Grand Duke Kirill is planning to buy the estate, just outside Coburg, of Herr Reuckert, the grandson of the late poet Friedrich Reuckert.   Kirill has said that he wants to "live the simple life of a country gentleman."

Royal Death: Maria Antonia Countess von Waldburg zu Wolfegg u Waldsee

HSH Maria Antonia Countess von Waldburg zu Wolfegg und Waldsee died on October 11 at Sigmaringen.  She was 90 years old.

HSH Princess Benedikta Maria Antonia Mathilde Anna of Hohenzollern was born at Sigmaringen on February 19, 1921, the elder of twin daughters of  Friedrich, Prince of Hohenzollern, and his wife, Princess Margarete of Saxony.  Maria Antonia's sister, Maria Adelgunde, died in 2006.

Maria Antonia married on January 4, 1942 at Sigmaringen to Count Heinrich Maria Willibald Benedikt Albrecht Philipp Ulrich  von Waldburg zu Wolfegg und Waldsee.  The couple had ten children:
Sidonia (1942), Sophie (1946), Friedrich (1948-1999),  Josef (1950), Maria Margarete (1953), Anna (1954), Hubert (1956), Theresia (1958), Jakobe (1960) and Ludmilla (1964).
Count Heinrich died in 1972

On the occasion of her 90th birthday last Februrary,  Maria Antonia, who lived in Sigmaringen, said:  "I was always curious and humor is very important to me.  I sitll have humor."

She recently appeared at the launch of a new book of photographs on the House of Hohenzollern, Die Fürstliche Haus Hohenzollern.





Friday, October 14, 2011

A second great grandchild for Queen Elizabeth II

Buckingham Palace announced today that Peter and Autumn Phillips are expecting a second child in March 2012.   Their first child, Savannah, will celebrate her first birthday on December 29.

A marriage for King Carol

October 14, 1935

Alexandre Avarescu, leader of the People's Party in Romania said today at a meeting of his party that "he proposed to postpone discussion of political problems for a couple of weeks, reports the New York Times.

"I have every reason to believe that an event may occur soon which will modify Rumania's internal situation."

The "mysterious event" is said to concern King Carol.  "Well-informed circles" believe that the King is concerned "by the criticism emanating from his own family and the majority of the Rumanian political groups," regarding his relationship with Elena Lupescu.  It is understood that Carol has "finally decided to leave her."

Carol is also rumored to be on the verge of announcing his engagement to a German princess, a member of the Hohenlohe-Langenburg family, closely related to Dowager Queen Marie.

The King's relationship with his former wife, Princess Helen, is "definitely ruptured," and there is no chance for a reconciliation, especially after Carol's sister, Elisabeth, divorced Helen's brother, King George II of the Hellenes, earlier this year.

Queen Marie's sister, Alexandra, is married to the Prince of Hohenlohe-Langenburg.   Their son, Gottfried, is married to Princess Margarita of Greece, a cousin of Queen Helen.  They also have three daughters, Marie Melita, who is married to Duke Wilhelm of Schleswig-Holstein, and two unmarried daughters, Princess Alexandra and Princess Irma, who were born in 1901 and 1902, respectively.

Hotel manager sues Princess for debt

October 14, 1921

Catherine Dunvin, 52, who resides at the Hotel Embassy at 70th Street and Broadway, was hailed in $2,500 bail today on a "charge of defrauding the hotel of a bill," reports the New York Times.

The hotel manager, Robert S. Maffitt, filed the complaint against his former guest, declaring "that from April last to October 7, when she left, Mrs. Dunvan did not pay a bill of $1,239.87. She stated that she not "received expected funds from her bankers in London."

Mrs. Dunvan "claims the title Princess Catherine Radziwill of Russia" and styles herself as a journalist.

A court date was set for October 21.

Royal Engagement: Prussia-Anahlt

October 14, 1915


The engagement of Prince Joachim of Prussia, the youngest son of the German Emperor, and Princess Marie Auguste, daughter of Prince Eduard of Anhalt, was announced today in the Berlin Reichsanzeiger,  according to an Associated Press dispatch sent from Amsterdam to London.

The Prince is 25 years old, and his future wife celebrated her 17th birthday last June.  She is the niece of Duke Friedrich II of Anhalt.   Marie August is the eldest of four children of Prince Eduard and his wife, the former Princess Luise of Saxe-Altenburg.   She has three younger brothers.  Her father is in command of a battalion of Prussian cavalry with Crown Prince Wilhelm at the front in Belgium.

At the start of the war, it was reported that Joachim had been wounded at front in Belgium, and was visited by his mother, who presented him with the Iron Cross.  Later, he was "said to be convalescing at Baden-Baden."  This led to a report by the "usually well-informed chronicle of the doings of royalty" for the London Truth.

"It has been stated that Prince Joachim of Prussia, youngest son of the Emperor Wilhelm, is staying at Baden-Baden for a course of treatment, as he is suffering from fatigue and exposure at the front.  It is very unlikely that Prince Joachim has been at all engaged at the front as he has always been more or less an invalid, and is in very bad health.  His is highly nervous and subject to a serious congenital malady."

Nicholas not happy with cousin Kirill

October 14, 1905


Grand Duke Kirill of Russia has been summoned home from Germany "to receive the full weight of the imperial displeasure" due to his marriage to Grand Duchess Victoria of Hesse, a divorcee, according to a New York Times report.

The couple were recently married in Munich.    Kirill will be "deprived of his rank as aide de camp" to Nicholas II, and "of his commission in the army, of is uniform, his orders, and other honors, and will be exiled from Russia."

The punishment meted out on the Grand Duke is is more severe than what Grand Dukes Paul and Michael received at the time of their morganatic marriages.  Kirill not only defied his Emperor's command to not marry, he also broke "canonical laws in marrying a divorced woman and his first cousin."   Grand Duchess Victoria is a first cousin to the Emperor and his wife, Alexandra, and she was married to Alexandra's brother, the Grand Duke of Hesse and By Rhine.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Princess Joachim gets her son back

October 13, 1921

Princess Joachim of Prussia has regained custody of her own child, Prince Karl Franz Joseph, reports the New York Times.  She was awarded custody "despite the fact " she ran away from her husband and child once, and despite servants' testimony against her."  This decision, in a Berlin court, was "the first test of the House of Hohenzollern laws versus the laws of the new republic."

The Princess' brother-in-law, Prince Eitel Friedrich of Prussia, took custody of the young prince after Prince Joachim committed suicide.  He claimed "the right to custody" because the former Kaiser "issued an edict placing the Hohenzollern powers in Eitel's hands."

The court declared Wilhelm II's action to be illegal.  

Prince Joachim, the Kaiser's youngest son, married Princess Marie Auguste of Anhalt on March 11, 1916.  She gave birth to Prince Karl Franz Joseph Wilhelm Friedrich Eduard Paul on December 15, 1916.

The marriage between Joachim and Marie Auguste was not a love match, but an arrangement. He suffered from depression and other mental health issues, and may have been abusive husband,  The princess fled the marital home.   Prince Joachim found it difficult to live in a post-Hohenzollern world, and took his own life in 1921.    He filed for divorce but the divorce was not finalized before his death.
Prince Joachim's true love was Princess Elisabeth of Urach, but she was not of equal rank, and he was not allowed to marry her.

Royal Engagement: Austria - Windisch Graetz

October 13, 1901

The Times of London has received a dispatch from Vienna which announces the engagement of Archduchess Elisabeth of Austria, the only child of the late Crown Prince Rudolf, and Prince Otto of Windisch-Graetz.   Otto is a "scion of the younger branch of the princely house of Windisch-Graetz, which has equality of rank with reigning houses."

Archduchess Elisabeth is nineteen years old, and her future husband, a First Lieutenant in the Lancers, is ten years her senior.

This is said to be "a love match."   Elisabeth's grandfather, Emperor Franz Josef, is said to be in favor of the engagement.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine in New York

ROYAL COUPLE AND LIFELINE NEW YORK HELP SERBIAN ORPHANS
JADRANKA JOVANOVIC CHARITY PERFORMANCE
NEW YORK, 11 October 2011 – Their Royal Highnesses Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine attended today a charity lunch organized by Lifeline New Your Humanitarian Organization, operating under the patronage of HRH Crown Princess Katherine, at Le Cirque New York Restaurant in aid of children without parental care in Serbia.
The Royal Couple were joined by the famous Serbian opera Diva Jadranka Jovanovic, Serbian-American author Tea Obreht whose New York Times bestselling book “The Tiger’s Wife” is set in Serbia, Dr. Ruth Westheimer and supermodel philanthropist Petra Nemcova.
In their welcoming speeches Their Royal Highnesses Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine thanked everyone that came to this lovely event supporting the joint action to help children in need. Crown Princess Katherine pointed out that this year her Serbian Foundation celebrates its 10th anniversary in Belgrade, Serbia and in that period her Foundation with the help of supporting friends from all over the world managed to help hundreds of thousands of people. “I am extremely grateful and flattered that you decided to support us once again in this noble cause. The children of Serbia truly need you” said Crown Princess Katherine.
Everyone enjoyed the marvelous performance by the famous Serbian opera singer Jadranka Jovanovic escorted by Nikola Rackov on the piano. The performance of Mrs. Jadranka Jovanovic was a part of her United States of America Tour under the name “Pearls of World Music”. The Serbian Primadona is due to participate in another charity concert organized by the Royal Couple, which is taking place in Chicago on Monday, 17 October, in aid of Lifeline Chicago.
Part of the program was a silent auction where guests had the opportunity to bid for items donated by Pologeorgis Furs, Diane von Furstenberg, Tincati as well as for some attractive prizes such as a Round-Trip Airfare to Rio de Janeiro, Carlisle $1,000 Personalized Shopping Package and many others.
During the entire month of October, supermodel Petra Nemcova and Dr. Ruth are part of Lifeline New York’s online auction, by providing a rare opportunity for bidders to “win” a lunch with each of them. Ms. Obreht is also participating by auctioning off a private lecture by her to a book club. This interesting auction will be ongoing by the end of October and all funds raised will be used in a project in aid of children without parental care in Serbia.
Later today The Royal Couple Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine will be attending The George “Best” Kostakos awarding ceremony where Her Royal Highness will be presented with an award for her humanitarian endeavors. The Serbian Opera Diva, Jadranka Jovanovic will perform a short program during the ceremony.
More information on the work of HRH Crown Princess Katherine Foundation and Lifeline Humanitarian Organizations can be found at www.lifelineaid.info

Princess Dagmar has died

October 11, 1961


Princess Dagmar, sister of the King Christian X of Denmark, died on Wednesday after a "long illness," reports the Associated Press.  She was 71 years old.

She "renounced her title in 1922" when she married Jurgen Castenskjold, a Dane,who was master of the royal foxhounds, but to the Danes, she remained Princess Dagmar.  

The princess is survived by her husband and four children.

White Russians believe Czar will be restored

October 11, 1941

Prominent members of Paris' White Russian colony believe that Grand Duke Wladimir Kirillovitch, 24, "may be called" to the Russian throne," reports the New York Times.

They are basing their facts that Wladimir has traveled twice in the last few weeks from his home in Brittany to Paris, where he has conferred at "length with the colony's leaders."

During his time in Paris, the Grand Duke stayed at the Hotel Lancaster, which is "well patronized also by highly placed Germans."    It appears possible, "according to his compatriots and possible subjects," that the meetings have included the Germans as well.

Grand Duke Wladimir has not spoken publicly, avoiding reporters, as he does not want to confirm or deny reports on "plans to ascend" the Russian throne.

Greek King gets good news!

October 11, 1935

King George II of the Hellenes received very good news today.  The Greek Minister in London, Charalambos Simopoulos, "officially informed" George that "his throne had been restored to him."   The Minister, with the official instructions from the Greek government, called on George II at his London hotel to inform him  of the "resolutions adopted by the Greek Parliament."  He also passed on the "respects of the Greek government."

George II "received the news with great emotion." He said he looked forward to returning home and he "told of his wishes for the renewed prosperity if his country."

It is expected that the king's younger brother, Prince Paul, will precede him "to put the royal palace in order and make the necessary preparations" for George's return after a twelve-year exile.  The King is said to be "both amused and annoyed at suggestions that he will make a dramatic return by airplane."

Earlier this year, the King's marriage to Princess Elisabeta of Romania was dissolved by divorce.   She has returned to Romania to live.

Marie Adelaide to abdicate?

October 11, 1915


Grand Duchess Marie Adelaide of Luxembourg is "reported to be on the eve of abdication," reports the Marquise de Fontenoy.  The Grand Duchess, who "assumed the reins of government" when she turned 18, wants to abdicate in favor of her younger sister, Princess Charlotte, 19.

The 21-year-old Grand Duchess wants to join a religious order and "take up the work of a sister of charity."  Like her mother, Grand Duchess Marie-Anne, a member of the Braganza family and her younger sisters,  Marie Adelheid is a devout Roman Catholic.   She is said to be "terribly wrought" by the "appalling sufferings" during the present war.   

Thousands of badly wounded soldiers are being treated in German-occupied Luxembourg, and the Grand Duchess, it is said, "would be happier caring for them and tending them than occupying her throne."

As the Germans rule Luxembourg,  the young Grand Duchess is nothing more than a figure head.  She appears to have "tired of her crown and is anxious to exchange it for the coif and habit of a sister of charity."

Her mother and other family members and her ministers have given up on trying to have her change her mind, but Marie Adelaide remains determined to give up her crown.

Royal wedding: Saxe-Coburg - Schleswig-Holstein

October 11, 1905

Princess Victoria Adelheid,  eldest daughter of Duke Friedrich of Schleswig-Holstein, and niece of Empress Auguste Vikoria, was married earlier today to the Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.  The ceremony took place at mid-day at the "beautiful little castle" in Glücksburg.  The New York Times reports that fifty members of European royal houses were present for the ceremony, including the German Emperor and Empress and all their children, except for Crown Prince Wilhelm.

The castle was too small to "accommodate half the number of guests," so they arrived by automobiles or carriages for "country places in the neighborhood."  Kaiser Wilhelm II and his family stayed over last night on the royal yacht Hohenzollern, "which was brought to Kiel for the purpose."

The civil ceremony took place in the castle's wide hall.  Then "as many of the royal guests and their suites as could be accommodated" walked to the palace's chapel, where the religious wedding, according to the rites of the Lutheran church, took place. 

Today was a public holiday in Holstein.    Large crowds cheered the newlyweds as they "appeared together on the balcony of the castle."

The Chicago Daily Tribune reports that the bride "looked very sweet and timid."  She had a "lovely toilette of white chiffon lace with a train, the same used by the Duchess of Albany at her marriage."

In the procession to the chapel. the bride walked between her father, Duke Friedrich, and Kaiser Wilhelm II.    Her train was carried by "six maids of honor."  The bridegroom came between the Empress and his mother, the Duchess of Albany, who wore the Order of the Black Eagle, which she received today from Wilhelm II.

The Duke's first cousin, Prince Arthur of Connaught, represented King Edward VII.  He escorted the Duchess of Oldenburg to the the church.

At 4 p.m., the Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and his new Duchess left by automobile for Louisenlund, "where they will pass their honeymoon."   They will stay at Louisenlund for several days before traveling to Greinburg in Lower Austria, where most of their honeymoon will be spent. Their state entrance into Coburg will take place in November.

The British-born duke has been educated in Germany in preparation for his succession to the throne.  He reached his majority earlier this  year.  During his minority, the Duchy was governed by Prince Ernst of Hohenlohe-Langenburg, whose wife, Alexandra, is one of four daughters of the late Duke Alfred of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.   Princess Alexandra and Duke Carl Eduard are first cousins, and both are grandchildren of Queen Victoria.

King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra have given the newlyweds "costly furniture and a parure of diamonds for the bride."   The Prince and Princess of Wales' gift is a silver cup, and the Duchess of Albany has given her new daughter-in-law a diamond parure.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Royal engagement: Prussia-Oldenburg

October 10, 1905


Duchess Sophie Charlotte of Oldenburg, eldest daughter of the reigning Grand Duke of Oldenburg, is engaged to marry Prince Eitel Friedrich of Prussia, the second son of Kaiser Wilhelm II.    An official announcement was made in Glücksburg, where the Emperor and Empress arrived this morning.  They are in Glücksburg to attend the wedding of the Empress's niece, Princess Victoria Adelheid of Schleswig-Holstein, elder daughter of Duke Friedrich, and Carl Eduard, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, reports the New York Times.

All of the "imperial princes" are in Glücksburg, with the exception of Crown Prince Wilhelm.  Prince Arthur of Connaught,  who is the groom's first cousin, is representing King Edward VII.

The Coburg marriage is "unusually popular with the German people," and will "entirely remove the suspicions" against the Duke as "an English prince."   Carl Eduard's marriage to the niece of Empress Auguste Viktoria appears to meet "all the political requirements of the case."

It is also said to be "entirely a love match."

The date of the Prince Eitel Friedrich's marriage has not been announced.

Friedrich August of Saxony relieved on military duty

October 10, 1901

Prince Friedrich August of Saxony, the 37-year old son of Prince Georg,who is the only brother of the King of Saxony has been "relieved of all active duty in connection with the army" so that he may "devote himself exclusively to the study of  various branches of the administration" of Saxony, writes the Marquise de Fontenoy.  The Prince, second in line to the throne, is taking on these new responsibilities in order to "qualify himself for the business of rulership."

He is married to Archduchess Luise of Austria, and they are the parents of several sons and one daughter.  Friedrich August is said to be "an amiable-looking and rather scanty-haired man," who has a "perpetual smile," which "gives the idea of being possessed of a sunny nature."

Thursday, October 6, 2011

King of Württemberg is dead

October 6, 1891

By Cable and the Associated Press.

King Karl I of Württemberg died this morning at 7: 00 a.m.  He had been ill for some time.  Yesterday, his condition because "so critical that the last rites of the church were administered him."  During the night, his condition "became worse," and his doctors stated that they did not expect him to survive the.

The King was born on March 6, 1829.  He succeeded to the throne on the death of his father, Wilhelm I, on June 25, 1864.   He married Grand Duchess Olga Nicolaievna of Russia, daughter of Emperor Nicholas on July 13, 1846 at St. Petersburg.    

The couple had no children, and the throne passes Duke Wilhelm, the eldest son of Karl's first cousin, Prince Friedrich Karl and his wife, Princess Katherine of Württemberg,  the late King's sister.  
Thus, the new king, who has been proclaimed as Wilhelm II, is also the late king's nephew.

Wilhelm II is married to Princess Marie of Waldeck und Pyrmont.  They have one daughter, Duchess Pauline.

Grand Duke Michael en route to Balmoral

October 6, 1899

Grand Duke Michael, younger brother of Nicholas II and heir to the Russian throne, is going to Balmoral to meet with Queen Victoria, reports the Chicago Daily Tribune.  It is being "whispered" that there is to be an announcement of a betrothal between the young Grand Duke and Princess Margaret of Connaught, the elder daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Connaught. Princess Margaret will celebrate her 18th birthday in January.

The young Grand Duke was born in 1878, and his mother and older brother would like to see him marry.   The story of a possible marriage between Michael and Grand Duchess Helen, daughter of Grand Duke Vladimir, was "obviously nonsense", as the Russian Orthodox Church "positively forbids the marriage of first cousin."

Mr. Jones is now an earl

October 6, 1961

Antony Armstrong-Jones, the husband of Princess Margaret,  "formally became the Earl of Snowdon tonight."   Queen Elizabeth II made the announcement on Tuesday, but the title is not become official until tonight when it was published in the London Gazette, an official government publication.

Lord Snowdon's male heir will have the courtesy title Viscount Linley of Nymans in the County of Sussex.  Younger sons will be styled as the Honourable Christian name Armstrong-Jones.  A daughter would be know as the Lady Christian name Armstrong-Jones.

Princess Margaret will now be styled as "Her Royal Highness the Princess Margaret, Countess of Snowdon."

The Princess, who is the final weeks of her first pregnancy, was seen today at her home at Kensington Palace by her doctor and gynecologist.

Aosta to spurn Croation crown

October 6, 1941

The Axis plan to put the Duke of Spoleto, a member of the Italian Royal Family, "on the throne of Croatia has been abandoned because of the Duke's unwillingness to take on the job," reports the Associated Press reports today.

The AP's report is based on a dispatch from an American who arrived in Cairo today from Zagreb.

Croatia is a part of Yugoslavia, which is now under Nazi control.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Fife's marriage "give umbrage"

October 5, 1889

Members of Britain's Royal family are expressing their views toward the recent marriage of Princess Louise, the eldest daughter of the Prince and Princess of Wales, and the Duke of Fife, reports the New York Times. 

The Duke of Edinburgh is said to maintain "a stern and unbending attitude" toward the marriage, and has "greatly annoyed" Queen Victoria "by repeating to her the news," which have also been expressed by the Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and the Emperor of Russia.   These "sentiments of entire disapproval" are also "fully shared" by Victoria's eldest child, the Empress Friedrich, widow of Friedrich III, and mother of Wilhelm II.

Princess Margaret returns to London

October 5, 1961

Princess Margaret "ended her long Scottish vacation tonight,"  and left by train for London, reports the Associated Press.  The Princess, who is married to photographer Antony Armstrong-Jones, is expected to give birth to her first child later this month or in early November.

Alfonso will not cede rights

October 5, 1935

Former King Alfonso XIII of Spain has "no intention of relinquishing his claim to the throne" to his "equally dapper son," Infante Don Juan, reports the Associated Press, which based its report on comments made by those close to the former Spanish monarch.

Don Juan is marrying his cousin, Princess Maria de la Mercedes, a daughter of Prince Carlos of Bourbon-Two Sicilies, who was created an Infant of Spain following his first marriage to Infanta Mercedes of Spain, elder sister of King Alfonso.  After Mercedes's death in childbirth,  Carlos married Princess Laura of France.  

Don Juan is the third son of Alfonso and his wife, Victoria Eugenia.  His eldest brother, Alfonso, the former Prince of Asturias, renounced his rights two years ago when he married a Cuban commoner.  The second son, Don Jaime, also renounced his rights in 1933 due to his disabilities, as he is deaf and mute.

For the past six months, Don Juan has been a student at the University of Florence, where he studied law.  Alfonso had insisted that his son have legal training, after serving for several years with Britain's Royal Navy.  He joined the Royal Navy in 1931 shortly after the collapse of the Spanish monarchy.

This wedding will be far "more elaborate" that the weddings of Juan's sister, Infanta Beatriz, to Prince Alessandro Torlonia, and Don Jaime's wedding  to the "charming" Emanuela de Dampierre.  Both were married earlier this year.

The wedding on Saturday with be "accompanied by every colorful ritual of royal and Catholic marriage."   

The newlyweds are planning a six-month honeymoon tour of the world, including a "stopoff" in the United States.

Krill weds despite Nicholas's disapproval

October 5, 1905

The Tageblatt, a Munich newspaper, published today the news of the marriage of Grand Duke Kirill of Russia and Princess Victoria Melita of Edinburgh, the divorced wife of the Duke of Hesse and by Rhine.  They were married "quietly a few days ago at the the Hotel Russie," in Munich.

The civil ceremony was performed by an official from the Coburg government, and a  Russian Orthodox priest officiated at the religious service, held in the presence of Victoria Melita's mother, the Dowager Duchess of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, and Grand Duke Alexis of Russia, "who came from Paris in an automobile."

The Dowager Duchess is the former Grand Duchess Marie Alexandrovna of Russia, daughter of Alexander II.  

The wedding was conducted with the "greatest privacy" ` After the ceremony, the newlyweds and their families left Munich.

Grand Duke Kirill and Princess Victoria Melita are first cousins.  Kirill's father, Grand Duke Vladimir, and Victoria Melita's mother, Marie, are brother and sister.  Nicholas II is also their first cousin, and he is "bitterly opposed" to Kirill's marriage to a "divorced Princess."   It was said that Kirill was "sent to the Far East "in order to cure him of his infatuation.:

Grand Duchess Victoria is the daughter of the late Prince Alfred, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, Duke of Edinburgh, second son of Queen Victoria. She is a niece of King Edward VII.  She was born at Valetta, Malta, in 1876, and married her first cousin, Grand Duke Ernst Ludwig of Hesse and By Rhine in 1894.   Victoria Melita and Ernst Ludwig were divorced four years ago.  Their onluy daughter, Princess Elisabeth, died last year from typhoid.

The details of divorce were kept "secret," but it was said that "invincible mutual antipathy" caused the marital breakdown.  

Nicholas II is married to Ernst Ludwig's sister, Alix.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

More details from Princess Helene

The French press continues to report on what Princess Helene told police investigators on September 8.  Her estranged husband, Thierry Gaubert, has been implicated in several financial scandals.   She said that French president Nicolas Sarkozy, a long time friend of her husband, began to distance himself after Thierry in 1995 after Thierry was first linked to improprieties.

Princess Helene told police that "Mr. Sarkozy came twice with my parents in Palm Beach, at the invitation of Thierry.  I do not know who paid for the tickets."  She also spoke about a spontaneous "weekend in Venice." "We were with Sarkozy,  Mr.  Philippe Smadja and his wife, and Jean-Jacques de Peretti, former mayor of Sarlat. It was in 1992, 1993."

"Thierry had organized this little trip to thank Nicolas Sarkozy for his kindness and because he was a friend at the time.  We flew Air France, business class.  We stayed in an expensive hotel.  Sarkozy had a suite and a single room.  The name of the hotel was, I believe, Ciprani.  I can tell you that Thierry and Philippe Smadja paid for the whole trip."

Apparently, Sarkozy had not been satisfied with the single room, but wanted a suite, which was "lavishly decorated" with "two marble bathrooms.

She also spoke about the house her husband had built in Colombia in 2001.  She said the house was gigantic, more than 1000 meters."  She added:  "Thierry had delusions of grandeur."

The house cost $600,000, and included a gigantic pool.   The house, she said, was paid for in cash out of a suitcase from an account in the Bahamas.

Helene told about her husband and arms dealer Zia Takieddine would travel by train from Paris to London and then by plane to Switzerland to obtain money from a bank  "more precisely a safe " and then would return to London and then by train to Paris.

Interesting that Helene uses the term "mes parents" as it is Princess Maria Pia and Prince Michel de Bourbon-Parma who have owned a home in Palm Beach, Florida, for many years.

Georgian royal birth: not everyone is happy

Prince Nugzar Bagration-Gruzinsky has issued a statement regarding the status of his new grandson, Giorgi, and his two granddaughters, Irina and Miriam.

In 2001,  Nugzar's elder daughter, Anna, married Grigorly Malania, a Georgian architect, who is a descendant of the last king of Georgia, George XII through his mother.    Nugzar, who considers himself as the rightful heir to the former Georgian throne, gave his son-in-law the title of Prince.   In 2003, Anna gave birth to Irina.  Miriam was born four years later.  They have the surname Bagration-Gruzinsky, and are considered by their grandfather to be dynasts.

Anna and her first husband were divorced shortly after Miriam's birth.  The two girls now live with their maternal grandparents as their father will not permit them to live in Spain with Anna and her second husband, Prince David Bragration Mukhransky.

Prince Nugzar did not say if the marriage between his elder daughter and Prince David was an arrangement match.  But he did acknowledge that the wedding was scheduled to take place in April 2009, but the Georgian Patriarch  asked the family to move the wedding forward to February, due to Georgia's political situation.

The marriage did take in February 2009, but the couple separated six week later largely due to what Prince Nugzar describes as Davids bad behavior. 

The couple have reconciled, and they moved to Spain in November 2010.  They were married in a civil ceremony in Spain. 

According to Prince Nugzar,  the marriage contract between Princess Anna and Prince David was never finalized as Prince David would not renounce his rights to the throne.  Thus, according to Prince Nugzar,  his infant grandson is not a Bagration-Gruzinsky, but belongs to the Mukhransky branch only.
http://www.saqinform.ge/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=7352:saqartvelos-samefo-saxlis-gancxadeba&catid=88:politika2&Itemid=457

It's a girl!

Duchess Tatjana of Oldenburg, the wife of Count Axel de Chavagnac, gave birth to a daughter, Alexandrine, on September 30.   This is the first child for the couple, who were married on September 11, 2010.  

The 36-year-old German-born Duchess is the  second of three children of Duke Johann of Oldenburg and Countess Ilka zu Ortenburg.   Her older sister, Eilika, is married to Archduke Georg of Austria.

Count Axel, 44, is a media consultant with Solange-Stricker.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Don Jaime: Spanish pretender is dead

October 2, 1931

The Associated Press is reporting the death of Don Jaime de Borbon, Carlist pretender to the throne of Spain.  He died tonight at his Paris apartment  "of a heart attack."  He was 71 years old.

Don Jaime died "within a few days of his reconciliation with former King Alfonso" on September 14.   Members of Alfonso's entourage "emphasized" that the reconciliation was "purely of a family character" and the question of "renunciation of Don Jaime's claims was not involved."

Don Jaime's pretensions ot the Spanish throne go back to the reign of Ferdinando VIII, who succeeded to the throne in 1814.  He was succeeded by his daughter, Isabel, who formally abdicated in favor of her son, Alfonso XII, in 1870.   Alfonso XIII is Alfonso's posthumous son.

Ferdinando's brother, Don Carlos claimed the throne in 1833, and he "spent the rest of his life in efforts to make the claim good."

The Carlist claim was inherited by Don Carlos' son, Don Carlos, who in 1867 married Princess Marrgarita of Bourbn-Parma, daughter of the Duke of Parma.  

After the Spanish revolution in 1868, when Queen Isabel II was forced to leave the country, Don Jaime's father made "several attempts to claim the throne."   These attempts were unsuccessful as Isbael's son, Alfonso XII, was proclaimed king.

Belgium prepares for royal birth

October 2, 1927


Crown Princess Astrid, the wife of Crown Prince Leopold of Belgium, is expected to give birth to her first child "within the next few days," reports the New York Times by special cable.

If Princess Astrid gives birth to a daughter, the "news will be announced by the firing of 21 cannon shots."  If she gives birth to a son, "101 shots will be fired."   Residents of Brussels are likely to "listen with bated breath for a twenty-second shot."

If the child is a boy. he "will be named after King Albert," and will have the title Count of Hainault. 

Crown Prince Leopold, the eldest son of King Albert and Queen Elisabeth, married Princess Astrid of Sweden last October.