Friday, January 11, 2013

Bulletin: King Constantine I dead in Palermo

January 11, 1923

The New York Times is reporting that King Constantine of the Hellenes died earlier today in Palermo, Sicily.   He died of heart failure, but "popular report ascribes his sudden end to a broken heart," after being exiled for a second time.

The former king was not well when he arrived in Italy.  He spent several weeks at Salsanmaggiore, a popular spa resort in Parma, before returning to the Villa Iglae hotel in Palermo, where he succumbed at 10:30 in the morning. 

The trip to Parma seemed to have done the king a bit of good. When he returned to his apartment in the hotel, he looked "much stronger."

In Palermo, Constantine lived a "retired and sheltered life."  He walked at least once a day, sometimes visiting a prominent family in town.  It was apparent to many that the king was not well.  He "walked slowly and only for short distances."

But no one, not even his doctors, expected that "his end was approaching."

Last night, Constantine retired to bed, feeling "no better and no worse than usual."   This morning he awoke, but "suddenly fainted."  The only family members with the King are Queen Sophie, and their three daughters, Princess Helen, the Crown Princess of Romania, Princess Irene and nine-year-old Princess Katherine.

The other members of the Greek Royal Family are abroad.

The King's doctor was quickly summoned.  The "tender care  was of no avail," as the king died at 10:30 a.m.  Queen Sophie and their daughters were at his bedside when he died.

The King and his family were planning to leave tomorrow for Naples to stay at the Piazzo di Capodimonte, "at invitation of the Duke of Aosta.   Constantine had planned to settle in Florence.

The Associated Press is reporting that Constantine died of a cerebral hemorrhage as he suffered from arterial sclerosis and nephritis.

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