Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Alfonso pardons cousin

June 16, 1910

King Alfonso XIII of Spain has pardoned his "favorite cousin," Prince Alfonso de Borbon, for marrying Princess Beatrice of Edinburgh, Princess of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. The restoration of the prince's "military dignities, Spanish orders of knighthood and rank of intent," will follow immediately, reports the Marquise de Fontenoy.

This pardon was made known a few days ago at the baptism of Alfonso and Beatrice's infant son at Coburg, "at which there was a large gathering of royal personages."

The infant was baptized according to the rites of the Roman Catholic church, although Princess Beatrice remains a member of the Church of England. Her first cousin, Queen Ena, was the "principal godmother." As Ena was unable to attend, she was represented by the baby's grandmother, Infanta Eulalia. Infante Don Antonio, who is Prince Alfonso's father, served as the "chief godfather."

Don Antonio is now reconciled to his son's marriage. Last year, after the marriage had taken place, Don Antonio was "so angered" by Alfonso's decision to marry Beatrice, that "he notified his son he would no longer grant him any allowance," and would not have anything to do with him.

Don Antonio remains estranged from his wife, Infanta Eulalia, but his "tardy approval" of his son's marriage, as "indicated by his acceptance of the role of sponsor at the baptism of his first grandson," means that he will again "open the strings of his exceedingly well-filled purse" to his son.

Infante Alfonso married Princess Beatrice without having first received permission from King Alfonso. Although the king, who was fond of his cousin, would have sanctioned the marriage, his premier Maura, did not want to approve the marriage because Princess Beatrice refused to convert to the Roman Catholic church.

It was apparent, however, King Alfonso would not allow the punishment to last forever, due to his friendship with his cousin. Queen Ena may also have had a role in the removal of the ban as Beatrice is her first cousin and her "closest childhood friend."

The new Spanish premier, Canalejas, an ultra-Liberal, "has caused the king to proclaim perfect freedom of conscience and liberty of public worship, no matter what the religious domination," will unlikely raise any objections to Alfonso pardoning his favorite cousin "for no other offense than that of having married a particularly fascinating Protestant princess."


MAXny said...

Wasn't Ena poorly repaid down the road by Baby Bee.

manuel said...

Does "rank of intent" mean "rank of Infante"?
Actually, the Infante was not restored in his title of Infante, orders and rank until 1912. But interesting to see that it was already considered in 1910.

Marlene Eilers Koenig said...

the article does say rank of intent.