October 15, 1905
Grand Duke Kirill of Russia has arrived at Peterhof, having "been summoned from Germany" to receive the "full weight of imperial displeasure" due to his recent marriage to the divorced Grand Duchess Victoria Melita of Hesse and by Rhine. The couple were recently married in Germany, reports the New York Times.
Victoria Melita is the daughter of the late Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh and Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, and Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna of Russia. She is a first cousin of Nicholas II and his wife, Empress Alexandra, as well as her new husband.
In 1894, she married Grand Duke Ernst Ludwig IV of Hesse and By Rhine, the older brother of Empress Alexandra. It was a marriage encouraged by their mutual grandmother, Queen Victoria. The marriage was dissolved by divorce in 1901.
Grand Duke Kirill is the eldest of three sons of Grand Duke Vladimir and Grand Duchess Maria Pavlovna. He will be "deprived of his rank of aide de camp" to the Emperor, and of his military commissions, and other honors. The final humiliation will be a forced exile from Russia.
The Grand Duke will "suffer more severely" than Grand Dukes Paul and Michael as he "not only defied the commands of the Emperor," but also broke "canonical laws" by marrying his first cousin.