Friday, November 15, 2019

The Duchess of Cambridge at the opening of the Nook

all three photos  @Ken Stone

The Duchess, who is the Patron of EACH (East Anglia Children's Hospices), today opened The Nook, a state-of-the-art hospice.  EACH  raised £10,0000 to built the Nook.

Thank you to Ken Stone for allowing me to use the photos.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

A baby for the Hereditary Prince and Princess of Leiningen

@Ulrike Bartsch

The Hereditary Princess of Leiningen has confirmed to the German magazine that, yes, she is expecting a baby in February.   A triple descendant of Queen Victoria.

Princess Viktoria Luise von Preussen, only daughter of Prince Friedrich Wilhelm of Prussia and his second wife, Ehrengard von Reden, married Ferdinand, Hereditary Prince of Leiningen at Amorbach in September 2017.

I broke the story of their engagement, which was the first between two descendants of Queen Victoria since 1981 when Ferdinand's parents. Andreas, Prince of Leiningen, married Princess Alexandra of Hanover.

Flora Ogilvy to marry Tim Vesterberg

@Cepe Smith (who took the photo of the announcement)

@james Ogilvy

Today's The Times includes an engagement announcement.  Miss Flora Alexandra Ogilvy is engaged to marry Timothy Vesterberg, a Swede.   The couple have been dating for more than a year.

Flora is the eldest of two children of James Ogilvy and Julia Rawlinson.  She was born at Edinburgh on December 15, 1994.  She has a younger brother, Alexander.
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Flora is 53rd in line to the British throne.  Her father is the elder of two children of HRH Princess Alexandra, the Hon. Lady Ogilvy, and the late the Sir Angus Ogilvy, second son of David, the 7th Earl of Airlie and Lady Alexandra Coke.

A graduate of Bristol University, Flora runs  her own company, Arteviste.

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Tim Vesterberg is the son of Bo Patrik and Carina Margareta Vesterberg.  He was born at Stockholm on August 1, 1993.   A former ice hockey player in Sweden,  Tim now works in London as a financier.  He is an Investment Professional with Icon Infrastructure LLP.

Here is a link to Flora's Instagram, which has her engagement photo, taken by her father.

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Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Earl of Dalhousie puts castle up for sale

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<>James Ramsay, the 17th Earl of Dalhousie, announced in February that would sell the family home, Brechin Castle and the surrounding gardens in Angus, Scotland.
He said that he and his wife would move into a smaller house on the estate once the castle has been sold.

"We have therefore taken the decision to put the house and gardens up for sale and my wife and I will move to another smaller house on the estate once the sale is complete.

“The rest of the estate at Brechin, Edzell and Invermark, and all our business enterprises, including Brechin Castle Centre and Peggy Scotts (a restaurant), as well as our farming operation, forestry, game and property letting, will continue to operate as at present and, other than those who are employed at Brechin Castle itself, there will be no change in our present staffing, which now numbers around 90 full and regular part time staff.“Indeed, we will continue to explore opportunities to expand and diversify the family business.”

Brechin Castle has been in the Dalhousie family for 250 years.

James Hubert Ramsay was born on January 17, 1948.   He is the third child and eldest son of Simon Ramsay,  16th Earl of Dalhousie and Margaret Stirling of Keir.    He married Marilyn Butter on October 3, 1973.  They have three children, Lady Lorna Lefebreve, Lady Alice Dickinson and Simon, Lord Carnegie, who is married to an American, Kaitlin Kubinsky.

Lord Dalhousie has five grandsons.  Lord Ramsay's son, the Hon. William Fox Ramsay, is second in line to the earldom.

Lady Dalhousie is the second of five children of Myra Alice Wernher and Major Sir David Butter.  She is the granddaughter of Sir Harold Wernher, Bt and Countess Anastasia Torby (styled as Lady Zia Werhner, after her marriage) and a great-granddaughter of Grand Duke Michael Mikhailovich of Russia and his morganatic wife, Countess Sophie von Merenberg.  One of her godparents was her great-aunt, Nada, Marchioness of Milford Haven.

Lord Dalhousie is also chief of the Clan Ramsay, and since 2009, Lord Steward of the Household.   The position is a personal appointment by the Sovereign.  He succeeded the Duke of Abercorn in the position.  The Duke of Abercorn's late wife, Sacha, was the Countess of Dalhousie's first cousin.

Another family home, Dalhousie Castle, was sold in 1977.  The castle and estate had been in the family for eight centuries.  It is now a luxury hotel.

Savills is seeking offers of over £3,000,000.

Monday, November 11, 2019

Earl of Southesk engaged to marry

The Earl of Southesk is engaged to marry Camille Ascoli, daughter of Roberto Ascoli and  Valérie Marie Christine Ledoux.   The future countess has an Italian father and an French mother.  She born on June 6, 1990 at Paris.

@Arisaig Partners

Lord Southesk, the eldest of three sons of the 4th Duke of Fife and his wife, the former Caroline Bunting, was born on October 8, 1989.

Since April 2013,  Lord Southesk, who uses the name Charlie Carnegie, is the head of Thematic Research with Arisaig Partners and is based in Hong Kong.  He has a First Class Hons International Business (MA) degree from the Edinburgh University.  He is based in the firm's Hong Kong office.

Camille Ascoli has a MA in French and Italian from Oxford University.  Her father, who is originally from Milan, Italy, has been based in Hong Kong for many years.   The future countess has worked for Loréal since 2014 and has held positions with the company in Milan and Hong Kong.  Since September 2018, she has been Senior Product Brand Manager, based in London.

Lord Southesk is a descendant of Queen Victoria through her eldest son, King Edward VII's eldest daughter, Princess Louise, Princess Royal, who married Alexander Duff, Earl of Fife.(1849-1912).  Queen Victoria bestowed a dukedom of Alexander on the day of his wedding to Louise, thus becoming the Duke of Fife and the Marquess of Fife. 

He is also a descendant of William IV through his natural daughter, Elizabeth FitzClarence, who married the 18th Earl of Erroll.  Their daughter, Lady Agnes Hay married James Duff, who were the parents of Alexander Duff, who married Princess Louise.

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Princess Louise and the Duke of Fife had three children:  a stillborn son (Alistair) in 1890;  Lady Alexandra (1891-1959) and Lady Maud (1893-1945).  In  November 1905, King Edward VIII named Louise as Princess Royal and created Alexandra and Maud as Princesses with the rank of Highness.    Five years earlier, Queen Victoria recreated the Dukedom of Fife to allow for the Duke's daughters and their male heirs to succeed.  The secondary title was changed to Earl of Macduff.

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In 1912,  Lady Alexandra succeeded her father as the 2nd Duchess of Fife.  A year later,she married her mother's first cousin, HRH Prince Arthur of Connaught.  Although she was a peeress in her own right, she was styled as HRH Princess Arthur of Connaught.   The couple had one son, Alistair (1914-1943), who was heir to the Fife and Connaught dukedoms.  Prince Arthur died in 1938, thus predeceasing his father, Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught and Strathearn, who died in 1942.

The Connaught and Strathearn dukedom became extinct in 1943 following the death of Alexandra's only son, Alistair, 2nd Duke of Connaught.

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Princess Maud, married in 1923 to Charles, Lord Carnegie (1893-1992), heir apparent to the Earl of Southesk.  Following her marriage, she was styled as the Lady Maud Carnegie, until her husband succeeded to the earldom, when she became the Countess of Southesk.  Her first cousin, King George V, had not agreed with his father's decision to elevate Alexandra and Maud to princesses. So when Maud married, he suggested that she drop the title of Princess and the HH, and return to the style of a Duke's daughter, as the Lady Maud Carnegie.

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Maud's only son, James Carnegie, styled as Lord Carnegie from his father's accession to the earldom until the death of his Aunt Alexandra, when he succeeded as the 3rd Duke of Fife in 1959.  Three years earlier, he had married the Hon. Caroline Dewar.  This marriage ended in divorce in 1966.  The couple had three children: stillborn (1958), Lady Alexandra (1959) and David (1961), who is the present Duke of Fife and Earl of Southesk.

In 1992, the 3rd Duke of Fife also succeeded to his father's earldom, as the 11th Earl of Southesk.  Shortly after the Lord Southesk's death, the family announced that the Duke's heir, David, the Earl of Macduff, would be styled as the Earl of Southesk, as a courtesy title.   David's eldest son, Charles, was styled as Lord Carnegie.   The Duke of Fife is the actual Earl of Southesk, however, but due to the inheritance of the Southesk estate,  the heir to the Dukedom will be styled, not as the Earl of Macduff, but as the Earl of Southesk.

Times.  March 3, 1992

The family estate is Kinnaird Castle in Brechin, Scotland.

Victoria and Albert at Osborne

Last week, English Heritage hosted a fabulous conference (November 6-8) at Osborne House on the Isle of Wight.  Let's just say I would have enjoyed this conference immensely.  A dear friend, Katrina Warne did go to the conference.  The attendees had Osborne to themselves.

"It was an extremely interesting conference which featured a variety on papers on different aspects of the lives of Victoria, Albert & their family at Osborne. The speakers came from English Heritage, The Royal Collection & Historic Royal Palaces amongst other authoritative speakers.  The conference was held in the Durbar Room of the house. The food served at the meals was food that Queen Victoria would have recognised as she had eaten it herself at various stages of her life. There were tours of the house & garden. It is hoped that at some point the papers given will be published."

all photos @Katarina Warne

I have a pdf for the actual program, but cannot get it to be a link so here is a link to the draft program, which will give some information about the presentations.  I wish I could have popped over to Osborne

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

The marriage of Grand Duchess Charlotte of Luxembourg

November 5, 1919

Grand Duchess Charlotte of Luxembourg married Prince Felix of Bourbon-Parma today at the Cathedral in Luxembourg's capital, reports the Times.

Charlotte, "slender, fair and blue-eyed, looking very beautiful in her white bridal robe, heavily embroidered in silver," was escorted to the altar by her widowed mother, Grand Duchess Marie Anne.

Wearing morning dress, Prince Felix was accompanied by two of his brothers, Prince Sixtus and Prince Xavier, both of whom wore Belgian military uniforms.

Prince Sixtus and the bride's sister, Prince Hilda, were the witnesses. 

The guest listed was limited to members of the bride and groom's families, including  Princesses Elisabeth of Luxembourg, Princess Sophie of Luxembourg, Princess Henriette of Bourbon-Parma, Prince Gaetan of Bourbon-Parma, Prince Louis of Bourbon Parma, Prince Rene of Bourbon-Parma, Princess Isabelle and Princess Maria Antonia of Bourbon-Parma.

Two the bride's sisters were not present for the wedding. Former Grand Duchess Marie Adelaide is now living in a monastery in Italy.  Princess Antonia has been engaged to marry former Crown Prince Rupprecht of Bavaria since August 1918.  This engagement has caused great controversy due to Luxembourg's position as an occupied nation during the war.

all three photos: Marlene A. Eilers Koenig collection

The wedding day was "marred by thick persistent rain and the foggy, cheerless atmosphere" outside the cathedral.

Prince Felix and Grand Duchess Charlotte became engaged on October 6, 1918, as the Great War was coming to an end.  Luxembourg, which had been occupied by Germany for most of the war, would once again be a free  nation, where the citizens would vote to continue the monarchy, after Charlotte's older sister, Grand Duchess Marie Adelaide, abdicated on January 14, in her sister's favor.

Because Felix was an Austrian citizen, the Allied powers were concerned about the marriage.  The day before the wedding, a special bill was introduced in Parliament that would provide citizenship to Prince Felix. It passed later that day after a "stormy discussion."

Grand Duchess Charlotte is 23 and Prince Felix is 26.  He is the brother of former Empress Zita of Austria, the consort of Emperor Karl. 

The bride and groom are first cousins as their mothers,  Marie Anne (Maria Ana) and Maria Antonia of Portugal, two of seven children of King Miguel I of Portugal, who reigned from 1828 to 1834) and Princess Adelheid of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg.    Maria Ana married Grand Duke Guillaume IV of Luxembourg and Maria Antonia was the second wife of the late Grand Duke Roberto I of Bourbon-Parma.

The civil wedding took place earlier today at the Grand Ducal Palace.   Following the Roman Catholic ceremony a gala dinner was held at 7 p.m., at the palace.

Another nice mail call

A lovely thank you from the Prince and Princess of Castell-Rüdenhausen

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Mail Call

In case you have not heard --  my Washington Nationals won the World Series on October 30.  I have been on cloud nine for nearly a week, but now I have bronchitis, so resting at home.

Look what the mailman brought a few days ago.

HRH Princess Armgard von Preussen

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Princess Armgard of Prussia, the widow of Prince Wilhelm Karl died at Holzminden on November 1 at the age of 93.

Armgard Else Helene von Veltheim was born February 26, 1926 at Destedt, the only daughter of  Friedrich Bertram Hans von Veltheim and Ottonie Luise Sophie von Alvensleben,  She married HRH Prince Wilhelm-Karl Adalbert Erich Detloff of Prussia on March 1, 1952 at Destedt.

Prince Wilhelm-Karl was the fourth and youngest child of Prince Oskar of Prussia and Countess Ina-Marie von Bassewitz,  Prince Oskar was the fifth of seven children of Kaiser Wilhelm II.

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 Princess Armgard is survived by her three children, Princess Donata, 67, Prince Wilhelm-Karl, 64, and Prince Oskar, 60, and three grandchildren: Prince Oskar, Princess Wilhelmine and Prince Albert of Prussia, the children of Prince Oskar and his wife, Auguste.

The funeral will take place at Holzminden on November 11.

both photos from the 1980s - sent to me by the late Prince Wilhelm Karl.

Andreas von Bismarck (1979-2019)


Sad to report the death of Andreas von Bismarck, the CEO of Terrot, a knitting machine manufacturer in Chemnitz, Germany. 

Andreas was died unexpectedly on October 31.  He was 40 years old.

He was a founding member of the association, Economy for a Cosmopolitan Saxony.

Andreas was named as Managing director of Terrot on February 22, 2008.  According to Terrot's official press release,  Andreas "modernized the company with great success and prudence and brought it to commercial success."

@Stig Nielsen

  After his military service with 2nd Military Batallion in Berchtesgaden, he studied business and law at Georg-August University and Humbolt University in Berlin.  He was also the Business Director of the Kira Auguste Prinzessin von Preußen Musik und Kultur Stiftung, which was founded after the death of his mother-in-law, Princess Kira of Prussia (1943-2004), the fourth child and second daughter of Prince Louis Ferdinand of Prussia and Grand Duchess Kira Kirillovna of Russia.

Andreas Felix Paul von Bismarck was born at Munich on January 31, 1979.  He was the son of the late Hans Maximilian Günther von Bismarck and Cornelie Enole Dorothee von Schwerin.  He is survived by his wife, Kira-Marina Liepsner, whm he married in 2005, and their two daughters, Luise, 17, and 12-year-old Sophie, along with his mother and his sister, Ines.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Charles and Camilla: A History of their Romance

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I did not want to say anything until the article was published but BBC's History Extra magazine commissioned me to write an article on the early years of Charles and Camilla's romance.

The article was posted earlier today. The article was fact checked by their staff -- a good thing.

I am so chuffed and honored to have been asked.  I hope it leads to more commissions.

Monday, October 28, 2019

American woman now Marchioness of Ormonde

October 29, 1919

James Edward William Theobold Butler. the 3rd Marquess of Ormonde, died on October 26 at the age of 75.  He was survived by his wife, the former Lady Elizabeth Grosvenor, daughter of the 1st Duke of Westminster, and their two daughters, Lady Beatrice Poole-Carew and Lady Constance Butler and three grandchildren.

As he has no male heir, the peerages were inherited by his brother, James Arthur Wellington Foley Butler, who was styled as Lord Arthur Butler.  He succeeded as the 4th Marquess of Ormonde and 2nd Earl of Ormonde, Earl of Ossory and Viscount Thurles.    On March 8, 1887, he married Ellen Stager, an American heiress, the daughter of Gen Anson Stager.

After their marriage, Ellen, whose personal fortune at the time was $1,000,000,  was styled as Lady Arthur Butler.  Her father was the co-founder of Western Union.

The new Lord and Lady Ormonde are the parents of four children: Lady Evelyn (1887) who is married to Edmund Drummond, younger brother of the Earl of Perth; George(1890), whose wife is the Hon. Sybil Fellowes, daughter of the 2nd Baron de Ramsey, James (1893) and Lady Eleanor (1894)

The eldest son, George, is now styled as the Earl of Ossory and his son, James Anthony Butler, has the courtesy title, Viscount Thurles.

Due to the double-tax situation as the late Marquess had only daughters,  it was decided that the new Marquess' elder son, Lord Ossory, will inherit Kilkenny Castle in Kilkenny, Ireland, and other family properties.

The castle has been in the Ormonde family since 1391 when James Butler, 3rrd Earl of Ormonde bought the property.  The Butler family was one of the most powerful families in Ireland for several centuries.  The 19th Earl of Ormonde was created the 1st Marquess of Ormonde in 1825 (in the peerage of the United Kingdom.)

Friday, October 25, 2019

Norwegian publisher pulls Shaman's book

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 Derek Verrett, a self-proclaimed Shaman,  is the author of a book, Spirit Hacking, that has caused a bit of controversy.   He is the boyfriend of Princess Martha Louise of Norway.

Norwegian publisher  Cappelen Damm has decided to not publish a Norwegian translation of the book because Durek claims that children get cancer because they are unhappy.

Publisher Knut Ola Ulvestad told VG, an Oslo-based newspaper:  "The fact that we stop the book is more about the ethical and the thinking with the heart, rather than the legal side of this. It's all about making the right choice. Last week, when I read through the Norwegian translation and found the parties dealing with the causes of cancer and treatment, it became impossible to publish this book. If this is read literally, it can simply be harmful."

He added: "This led to a good and critical discussion at the publisher. We all have friends and colleagues affected by cancer, who have children affected by cancer. And what Durek writes about, for example, is that when children have cancer, it is because they are unhappy and thinking about it, so yes, I simply do not have an adequate comment on this....We have made a mistake and are now choosing to take the consequences."

The book has the support of Princess Martha, who wrote on her Instagram account : "This book is something else. Read it and find out for you self how to hack your spirit, stop being a bobble head or a sheeple and get on the lit train for GIANTS. So proud of your work, my love."

Swedish publish Nona has announced that it will also stop publishing Verrett's book.

One Norwegian newspaper, Dagbladet, reviewed the English-language edition, calling it "Crazy man's speech."  The reviewer added that Verrett claims that cancer is "self-inflicted."

Crown Prince Haakon, who is Martha Louise's brother, has weighed into the f fray, according to Norwegian historian, Oskar Aanmoen    : "It is up to the publisher whether they want to publish a book or not. We have a different approach to these issues. I base my opinions on research and the Norwegian health system."

According to press reports, Verrett says he plans to sue Norwegian media for "bullying."

Princess Elisabeth turns 18

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Princess Elisabeth of Belgium celebrated her 18th birthday today with an official celebration, including a speech and receiving the Order of Leopold from her proud father, King Philippe.

When presenting Elisabeth,  the heiress apparent to the Belgian throne,  the KIng said: “The Leopold Order that I will hand over to you shortly is a national order created by our ancestor Leopold I. That distinction is, therefore, also part of our family history. It symbolises the dignity of our country and our family. I hope you will see this as an encouragement and a sign of confidence.”

The Princess, who attends boarding school in Wales, gave a confidence speech that left both her parents beaming with pride.  Her final words: “I realize that I still have a lot to learn. I will also focus on that in the coming years: trying to understand the world better and contribute to improving it by giving the best of myself. The country can count on me.”

The Princess' grandparents, King Albert and Queen Paola, joined her parents, King Philippe and Queen Mathilde and her uncle, Prince Laurent, and Princess Astrid's eldest child, Prince Amedeo of Belgium, who is one of Elisabeth's godparents.

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Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Princess Elisabeth of Belgium approaching her majority

To celebrate Princess Elisabeth's 18th birthday, which takes place on October 25, the Belgian palace released five new photographs today of the future Queen Regnant.

Princess Elisabeth, Duchess of Brabant,  is the eldest of four children of King Philippe and Queen Mathilde.

The photos were taken this summer at the family's home, Laeken Palace.

The princess is currently a student at the UWC Atlantic College in the Vale of Glamorgan, Wales.  She plans on completing the  International Baccalaureate Diploma Program. 

Royal Palace, Brussels  Photographer: Michel Gronemberger

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Official photographs of Queen Helen's return to Romania

Queen Mother Helen of Romania (Princess Helen of Greece and Denmark), was laid to rest in Romania on October 19 at New Episcopal and Royal Cathedral in Curtea des Arges.  The mother of the late King Michael, Helen died in exile in Lausanne, Switzerland, on November 28, 1982.  She was 86 years old.   She was buried at the  Bois-de-Vaux Cemetery in Lausanne.

Finally, nearly 30 years after the member of the Romanian royal family returned to Romania for the first time since King Michael's forced abdication on December 30, 1947,  the remains of Queen Helen were brought to Romania for reburial.

Thank you to HM Margareta, Custodian of the Crown, for allowing me to use the official photos from October 18-19.   The Duke of Aosta, whose mother, the late Princess Irene, was Queen Helen's sister, attended the funeral and reburial, with his younger daughter, Princess Mafalda.  The Prince of Wales was represented by the Earl of Rosslyn, Master of the Household for the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall.

The copyright for the photos is @Romanian Royal Household.

Princess Sophie

Princess Marie 

Duke of Aosta

Princess Mafalda of Savoy-Aosta

the Earl of Rosslyn, representing the Prince of Wales. He is Master of the Household for the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall.