Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Maria Luise Prinzessin von Preussen

This is a translation of parts of an interview with Marie Luise Prinzessin von Preussen, one of six children of Philip Prinz von Preussen, eldest son of HRH Prince Friedrich Wilhelm of Pruussia, and his first wife, a German commoner.
"When I am asked my name, I usually say Marie Luise von Preussen.  But my full name is in fact quite long:  Anna Maria Luise Philippa Julia Margarethe Elisabeth Prinzessin von Preussen.   So I am a princess.   One could call me Royal Highness, but no one ever does.   I see such styling on letters addressed to my father, Prince Philip Kirill.   My ancestors were Kings and Prussia and German Emperors.  Wilhelm II was my great-great-great-grandfather.

"Other children at my school are curious about my name.  They want to know if I have a crown or whether we live in a castle or if a driver takes me to school.   Once they know better, they realize that I am quite normal.

"None of my friends has a title of nobility, and my family and I live as commoners.   For the past three years, we live north of Berlin in an old mansion on a lake.  My father is a pastor, as a prince is not a profession.  In our family faith is very important.   I have five siblings, also all princes and princesses.  With so many children,  it is clear that we all help in the house.  During the weekends, I help my mother with the cooking.  Recently I baked my first marble cake

Marie Luise, 14, says she shares a bedroom with one of her sisters.  She attends a private Lutheran high school where art and music are especially encouraged.   Art and music are Marie Luise's two favorite subjects.   She goes to ballet class once a week, and she loves playing the piano and violin.   She says the music genes may come from Frederick the Great.

"We know that he played the flute very well and liked dogs, just like me.  He is one of my most famous ancestors."    Marie Louise added that Frederick the Great once said that "he was the first servant of his state.
"There are 'Prussian values' that our family attributes to punctuality, sense of duty, but also tolerance and kindness to strangers.   But this is our faith, and not from being noble.  I try to obey my parents, be reliable, and always do my homework.
"Fortunately, I am not under constant surveillance like Prince William,  but it is a bit of shame that Germany is no longer a monarchy as in Britain or Spain.  Then perhaps my father would be the Crown Prince, and my grandpa might have been the Kaiser.  Why only 'maybe'?"

"Actually, my grandfather as the firstborn would have inherited the family fortune.  But he married a commoner - a woman without a title of nobility, no countess or a princess.  My great-grandfather was so upset that he disinherited him bequeathed everything to the other grandchildren.  My grandfather continues to fight in court for his rights."
[Note: under German law, Marie Luise's grandfather, Prince Friedrich Wilhelm, received a percentage of his father's estate, as did all of the surviving children, but the bulk of the estate was inherited by Friedrich Wilhelm's  nephew, Prince Georg Friedrich.]

"It is not important whether someone is noble or note.  It is all about inner values.  My mother is a commoner and a great woman.  Prince William should marry his Kate, even though she is not from a noble family.   My family has not been invited.  I will be spending the weekend at church, practicing my instruments, and spending time with my family and friends.  All of this is more important to me than any castle in the world."

From Dein Spiegel   http://www.spiegel.de/deinspiegel/0,1518,753854,00.html

The family live in Lehnitz.  Prince Philip is a Lutheran pastor who is involved in several congregations in Brandenburg, including Vehlefanz, Schwante, Bärnklau, Oranienburg and Kremmen. In an interview with a local newspaper last fall, Pastor von Preussen said that "rituals are important to us."

The family prays at every meal.  "Praying is like breathing," he said.   It is difficult to be a pastor in Brandenburg, once a part of atheistic East Germany.  He wants to attract more young people to church, using pop music, films, theatre and debate.  He often does not wear a robe.

There is no TV in his house, and he limits his children's access to the Internet.  "Children should talk with their friends in person."   He encourages his children to read.  One favorite is the English writer, Enid Blyton, "who hardly anyone knows," he said.

Philip also believes in a strong musical education. Almost all of his children play the piano and a second instrument.


Patsea said...

What a beautiful family!

Kaffurism said...

How Interesting! I came here after watching a documentary on TV about the Romanovs. I have several Ancestors who were Prussian and who emigrated to Australia and New Zealand so I find anything to do with Prussia most interesting .

Regards,Ron B.