Monday, February 21, 2011

No hope for reconciliation between Cumberland and the Kaiser

February 21, 1899

All "hopes of reconciliation" between the Duke of Cumberland Kaiser Wilhelm II "are now at an end, and the agreement that would have allowed the Duke's eldest son "to be invested with the sovereignty of the Duchy of Brunswick," has been scrapped.
The Duchy, according to the Marquise de Fontenoy,  "belongs by right of inheritance" to the Duke of Cumberland."  This acknowledgment appears in the current edition of the Almanach de Gotha, where the duke is listed as the Duke of Brunswick.
A semi-official statement from Prussia that states that the "House of Guelph, can ever, under any circumstances, ascend the throne of Brunswick, and that the Duke of Cumberland, and his sons and descendants are forever excluded from the succession."
The Duchy's prime minister, Dr. von Otto, proposed the toast to the Kaiser "on the occasion of the grand official banquet given in honor of the Emperor's birthday," and said it was "utter hopelessness" on the expecation that "any Guelph Prince should ever be permitted to reign in Brunswick."
No one knows for sure who to blame "for the failure to carry out the terms of the agreement" between the Kaiser and the Duke through a "joint intervention" between the Alexander III of Russia,  the Duke of Cumberland's brother-in-law,  Emperor Franz Joseph of Austria, Queen Victoria and the King of Denmark, the father of the Duchess of Cumberland.  
Many blame the Kaiser for the failure of the proposed agreement.
It is now expected that Wilhelm II will name his brother-in-law, Prince Adolph of Schaumburg-Lippe, who will replace Prince Albrecht of Prussia.
The Duke and Duchess of Cumberland are on the most intimate terms with Franz Joseph, and Wilhelm's decision to not allow young Prince George of Cumberland "to take possession of the throne of Brunswick" has put a great strain on "relations between the courts of Vienna and Berlin."  It has also "naturally increased the undisguised apathy" between the Dowager Empress Marie Feodorovna toward the Kaiser.  The Duke of Cumberland is said to be her "favorite brother-in-law."
The next in line to the Brunswick duchy is the elderly Duke of Cambridge, but he is married morganatically, and his sons have no dynastic status in Brunswick and Great Britain. 

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