Saturday, July 30, 2011

Zara's gown

credit: AP
Miss Zara Phillips arrived at the Canongate Kirk at 3:05, five minutes late, for her wedding to rugby star, Mike Tindall.  She wore an "ivory silk faille and silk duchess satin gown," designed by Stewart Parvin.  Her shoes were designed by Jimmy Choo.
The gown was "chosen form the White Room," Minchinhampton, near Miss Phillip's home in Gloucestershire.

The Princess Royal loaned the Greek key tiara that once belonged to Princess Alice of Battenberg (Princess Andrew of Greece), Zara's great-grandmother, and the mother of the Duke of Edinburgh.

Zara to keep own name after wedding

Zara Phillips, a prominent sportswoman in her own right, will continue to use her maiden name "for sporting and commercial purposes" after her wedding to Mike Tindall, according to a spokesman.

The attendants:  Mrs.  Dolly Maude (Maid of Honour) and the bridesmaids:  Miss Stephanie Phillips (the bride's half-sister), Nell Maude (daughter of Dolly), Jaz Jocelyn (daughter of a family friend), and Hope Balshaw (daughter of the bestman, Iain Balshaw).  The little page boy, wearing the Balmoral tartan, was Zara's godson, Ted Maude.

More about five-year-old Ted:

Friday, July 29, 2011

Zara and Mike attend wedding rehearsal

Zara Phillips and Mike Tindall, the "sports personsalities" who will wed tomorrow,  attended a wedding rehearsal earlier today at the Canongate Kirk in Edinburgh.

Tonight, the bride and groom hosted a pre-wedding reception on board the former royal yacht, Britannia.  The royal guests included the Earl and Countess of Strathearn, Prince Harry of Wales, Princess Beatrice of York and her boyfriend, Dave Clark, Princess Eugenie of York, the Earl and Countess of Wessex, as well as the bride's parents, the Princess Royal and Mark Phillips, with their respective spouses.  

Peter and Autumn Phillips also attended.

Sir Jackie Stewart, and his wife, Helen, who is one of Zara's godmothers, were also among the guests that included members of England's rugby team and Britain's riding elite.

Duke of Kent welcomed in Canada

July 29, 1941

The Duke of Kent was welcomed in Ottawa by his uncle, the Earl of Athlone, who is the Governor General of Canada, reports United Press.    He was also welcomed by Prime Minister W.L. Mackenzie King and Malcolm MacDonalds, the British High Commissioner.

The Duke is the first member of the British royal family to undertake a transatlantic flight.  His visit, said to be "purely military and personal, is informal, and not a state visit. in Ottawa, he will stat the Rideau Hall, the resident of the Earl and Countess of Athlone.  

Lord Athlone is the younger brother of the Dowager Queen Mary.

This is not the Duke of Kent's first visit to Canada.  In 1927, he toured the Dominion with his eldest brother, the Prince of Wales, now the Duke of Windsor.

Heirs to Europe's thrones are all nearly minors

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 July 29, 1911

If a "sudden wave of disaster were to sweep over Europe and carry off its reigning monarchies,"  nearly all of the new monarchs would be children or infants, reports the Chicago Daily Tribune.

Every royal house has nurseries, governess, and tutors, and the "sounds of children's laughter and flying fee liven up royal homes, many of which are not by any means the happiest."

The heir to the Russian throne is 6.  Spain's heir is 4; Norway's 8; Holland's 2; Belgium's 9; Italy's 6; and Great Britain's 17.

The Prince of Wales, the heir to the British throne, is in "his last year of childhood."  He will come of age next year when he will "have his own establishment and attendants."

In June, the prince was "made a Knight of the Garter," four weeks after he was invested with the title Prince of Wales, in a "ceremony nearly as ancient as the coronation itself."   He is expected to enter one of the colleges at Oxford, and may also spend some time at Cambridge.  The Prince is also expected to "make a tour of the British empire" with his brother, Prince Albert,  and then enter the army.

The Prince of Wales' first cousin, Crown Prince Olav of Norway is the "most press-ridden and most photographed child in existence."  He is also the heir apparent to the youngest kingdom in Europe.  His father, Prince Carl of Denmark, took the name Haakon when he became king of Norway in 1905.  His young son, Prince Alexander, was given the name Olav, the name of Norway's patron saint.

Crown Prince Olav is a "bright and pretty child," but not "over intellectual."  He is always full of high spirits," and a tremendous favorite "with the public both at home and abroad."  When he was first brought to Norway at the age of two, "his new subjects paid so much attention and were so fond of kissing him" that his mother, Queen Maud, kept in the palace grounds "for some time."

Young Olav is said to be the favorite of his grandmother, Dowager Queen Alexandra.

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 The young heir to the Russian throne, Alexis, who is the Tsarevitch,  is the youngest of five children of Nicholas and Alexandra.  He has four older sisters.   His birth six years ago brought great joy to his family, and to the nation. 

Little Alexis is the "richest and most heavily insured royal child."  When he was born, he was given an annual income of $2,000,000, which will cover his expenses until he reaches the age of 15, when he will receive a "further allowance."  Alexis will celebrate his 15th birthday on August 12, 1919.

Nicholas, who reigns over 180,000,000 people, "holds the theory" that his young son "must have his own way in everything."  Young Alexis "lords it over his sisters and nurses in no uncertain terms."

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Life is very different for two-year-old Princess Juliana of the Netherlands.  She is the only direct heiress to a throne, although a younger brother will surpass her in the succession.  Juliana is known as the "child of hope" because of Queen Wilhelmina's several miscarriages.   There were fears in the Netherlands that the throne would pass to a distant German cousin.

Every milestone in Juliana's life is "chronicled."  The news of her first tooth "occupied paragraphs" in every Dutch newspaper, and crowds look forward to her "daily walk" when she is in "residence with her parents in Amsterdam."

Nicholas will not allow Grand Duke Kirill to marry Victoria Melita

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 July 29, 1905

News has been received in Berlin from Coburg that the Russian Emperor Nicholas II "has refused permission" to his cousin, Grand Duke Kirill, to marry the divorced Grand Duchess of Hesse and By Rhine, reports the New York Times.

The Grand Duchess is a first cousin to both Kirill and Nicholas II.  She is the former Princess Victoria Melita of Edinburgh, Princess of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, second daughter of the late Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, and his Russian-born wife, Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna.

Grand Duchess Maria is the sister of Alexander III and Grand Duke Wladimir, fathers of Nicholas II and Kirill, respectively.  Victoria Melita and her former husband, Grand Duke Ernst Ludwig, are also first cousins, as both are grandchildren of the late Queen Victoria.   Ernst Ludwig's younger sister, Alix, is married to Nicholas II.

Rumors have been circulating for two years now regarding Kirill's desire to marry Victoria Melita.  There also have been announcements that the couple has already married.  For every announcement of an engagement between the cousins, there has been the "statement that Emperor Nicholas" is averse to the marriage.

Empress Friedrich takes a turn for the worse

July 31, 1901

The Empress Friedrich, mother of Kaiser Wilhelm II, is not in satisfactory condition,  according to an official announcement.   Professor Renvers visited the dowager empress earlier today at her residence, Schloss Kronberg. 
The Dowager Empress has not left her apartments for "the last few weeks," and medical bulletins have been issued, although this is expected to change.    Princess Henry of Prussia has been at Kronberg "on a flying visit."

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Princess Mary does the fox trot at an East End Ball

July 28, 1921

Princess Mary, the only daughter of King George V, is "vieing" with her brother, the Prince of Wales "in surprising Londoners with her informality."

According to the United News Service, the princess' "latest gentle escapade" was to appear "suddenly at a workmen's club in the East End district during a dance."

The princess, choosing her partners from the "ranks of the workers," danced for two more two hours.  Her first partner, Dennis Taylor, a former soldiers, was her first partner.  She also danced with four other young men.

Taylor told a reporter afterwards:  "I was thunderstruck when I found that the princess was my partner.  I would rather have faced a battery with my old machine gun.  But she talked and danced my nervousness away."

Duke of Brunswick leaves front for treatment

July 28, 1917

The Duke of Brunswick has arrived in Gmunden, Austria, "to undergo treatment for a nervous breakdown," according to a dispatch from Vienna, and published in the New York Times.

The Duke, who has "held a command on the western front," has been ordered to take a long rest, "probably for several months."  

The Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg is married to Kaiser Wilhelm II's only daughter, Princess Viktoria Luise.

Lord Harewood - New York Times Obit

The New York Times' obit for the late Earl of Harewood was published on July 26.

Phillips - Tindall nuptials - no details to be released to the public.

Only about 1500-2000 people will be able to squeeze into the tiny area in front of the Canongate Kirk on Saturday when "two sports personalities" marry.  The bride is Miss Zara Anne Elizabeth Phillips, former world champion equestrian, and she will marry English rugby star Michael James Tindall.  

This is a private wedding.   No details, including the the Order of Service,  will not be released to the public.  The wedding will not be televised, nor will there be coverage in Hello!, apart from photos taken outside. 

The couple will hold a "brief drinks reception" on board the former royal yacht, Britannia, which is docked at the Firth of Forth. Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh, who are the bride's maternal grandparents, will not be attending this reception.  They will come down from Balmoral early on Saturday. 

The bride will be spending Friday night at Holyrood Palace.  She and her father, Mark Phillips, will be driven the 400 yards from the palace to the church.     Senior members of the British royal family, including the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall,  the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and Prince Harry, are expected to attend.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A Montenegrin wedding - great joy!

July 27, 1899

The marriage of Crown Prince Danilo of Montenegro and Duchess Jutta of Mecklenburg-Strelitz was celebrated this afternoon in Cetinje by the Metropolitan of Cetinje.  The NewYork Times reports that the wedding was celebrated in the presence of the bride's mother and brother, the Hereditary Grand Duchess of Mecklenburg-Strelitz and Duke Friedrich of Mecklenburg-Strelitz;  the Prince and Princess of Montenegro, the Grand Duchess of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, Grand Duke Constantine of Russia,  the Prince and Princess of Napes, and Prince Mirko, the bridegroom's brother.

Duchess Jutta will be known as Crown Princess Militza.

The residents of the capital "displayed the greatest enthusiasm" for the wedding festivities.  The new Crown Princess "wore the Montenegrin national costume" and was greeted "affectionately" by everyone.  After the wedding, the newlyweds returned to Crown Prince Danilo's palace, where they appeared on the balcony "and were greeted with acclamation by the palace."

Cetinje was "tastefully decorated," and tonight, "most of the buildings were brilliantly illuminated and a torchlight procession marched through the streets."

Marie Auguste gets custody of son

July 27, 1921

A Common Court in Berlin ruled today that the House of Hohenzollern's laws, "under which the former Kaiser ruled," are no longer valid, according to the New York Times.  The court awarded custody of the minor Prince Karl Franz Joseph of Prussia, to his mother, Princess Marie Auguste, widow of the late Prince Joachim, who committed suicide one year ago.

Prince Eitel Friedrich, the former Kaiser's second son and "legal head" of the family, "claimed the right to dispose of life and limb in the Hohenzollern family."  The court has refused to recognize this argument.   The Prince "then claimed the right" to keep his nephew, alleging that Princess Joachim "was not a fit mother.  He argued that she had run away from her husband and child, and, "it was rumored, not alone."

Princess Joachim was also in court. She appeared heartbroken and shattered, "which won the case for her.

Italian royals enjoy summer domesticity

July 22, 1907

The summer is the favorite time of the year for the Italian Royal Family, reports the New York Times.   King Vittorio Emanuele and Queen Elena are "exceptionally domestic and think of having their children exclusively for themselves, as they do in the Summer."  This is their "greatest happiness."  Their three young children are "overjoyed to having their papa and mamma to play with."

The Italian royal family are spending their summer at the Castel Racconigi in northern Italy.  Queen Elena is in "delicate health for the moment."   The King "plays nurse," and is spending his days teaching his children how to play tennis,  "how to shoot in the direction of tennis, driving for Princess Jolanda, and ball running" for the two younger children, Princess Mafalda and Crown Prince Umberto.

Six-year-old Princess Jolanda has been told that the stork will bring a new brother or a sister.  After first, the young princess "indignantly repudiated" the idea as "a baby like that couldn't hold on," she was eventually convinced that the new baby would be "carried under one wing to keep it warm."

Little Jolanda has told her mother "to keep a certain window every night, so that the stork might get easily in," and it is "one of her nightly duties" to make sure that the window is open.

King Vittorio Emanuele "is very anxious for another son.  He knows the "dangerous of royal life only too well," as his father was assassinated in 1900.  He "desires to have two or three sons" so that the succession may be secure "no matter what happens." 

The Italian succession is based on Salic law, which forbid the succession of women.  The young Crown Prince is a "sturdy fellow, standing firmly on two fat legs, self-willed, but looking one squarely in the eye.  He is said to be a firm favorite of his grandmother, the Dowager Queen Margherita.

Ernst August of Hanover is in a Spanish hospital

Spanish and German news organizations are reporting that Prince Ernst August of Hannover was admitted to the Nuestra Señora del Rosario hospital in Ibiza earlier this week.  The 57-year-old estranged husbamd of Princess Caroline of Monaco is said to be suffering from pancreatitis and other ailments.  
He was rushed to the hospital after suffering an infection and several abdominal pain and infection.  Ernst August was admitted to the hospital shortly after midnight on Tuesday.
This is not the first time that the Prince, head of the house of Hannover, has been admitted to the hospital for a serious illness. In 2005, shortly before the death of Prince Rainier III of Monaco, Prince Ernst August was in a coma due to substance abuse issues.  After Prince Ernst August came out of the coma and regained his health, he made a vow that he would give up drinking. 

Prince Ernst August is being treated with anti-biotics for the infection.  He will remain under observation so doctors can make sure that his liver and pancreas are not affected.

Earlier this month,  Prince Ernst August stated that he will sue his own lawyer for "claiming he was intoxicated during a violent brawl in East Africa in 2000.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Two princess saved at sea

July 26, 1961

Princess Paola of Belgium and Hereditary Grand Duchess Josephine-Charlotte of Luxembourg clung to a capsized sailboat,"a half mile from shore for 30 minutes" until their husbands, Prince Albert, and  Hereditary Grand Duke Jean were able to come to their rescue in a "rubber dinghy," reports Reuters.

Princess Paola, 23, and Hereditary Grand Duchess Josephine Charlotte, 33, had "gone boating alone while their husbands sunbathed on a beach."

When the vessel went over, the two princes "paddled out in the dinghy and pulled them aboard."
According to the Associated Press, the "sea was calm" and neither princess suffered any injuries.
The two couples had been spending their vacation at the Luxembourg royal family's summer residence, Tour Sarrazine, at nearby Cabasson, on the French Riviera.

Prince Albert and Hereditary Grand Duchess Josephine Charlotte are the siblings of King Baudouin of the Belgians.   Later this evening, Prince Albert and his wife left the "residence by car of an unknown destination."

Former Russian empress is ill

July 26, 1927

Dowager Empress Marie Feodorovna of Russia is suffering from influenza, reports the Associated Press.  The former Princess Dagmar of Denmark is recuperating at her summer home, Hvidore, near Klampenborg.

Marie is 80 years old.

King Alexander to marry Princess Sophie of Orléans

July 26, 1921

Prince Regent Alexander of Yugoslavia is to marry Princess Sophie d'Orléans, the daughter of the pretender to the French throne, according to the New York Times, which bases its report on Belgrade dispatches received in Vienna.

Prince Alexander is the youngest son of King Peter.  He was born at Cetinjne, Montenegro in 1888.  His mother, Zorka, was the eldest daughter of King Nikola.  Educated at Petrograd, Alexnder is  said to be a "studious and quiet young man."

The betrothal has not been officially confirmed.    This is not the first report of an engagement for the prince.  Last year, he was reported to be engaged to Princess Marie of Romania.    During a visit to England in late spring 1916, he was "said to have gone there hunting a wife."  It was said then that "the hesitation manifested by English fathers and mothers of high degree to an alliance with Prince Alexander" was due to the "uncertainty" of ever inheriting his father's throne.

There were also reports that he wanted to marry Grand Duchess Olga, the eldest daughter of the late Nicholas II, "and from whom the pitless Red executioners separated him forever."   As a result of "their attachment," Alexander is "often referred to as the protector and friend of the Russian refugees."

Princess Sophie is the second of four children of Prince Emmanuel, Duke of Vendome, and Princess Henriette of Belgium, whose brother is King Albert.  Sophie was born in 1898.  Her older sister, Princess Marie Louise, was married in 1916 to Prince Filippo of Bourbon-Two Sicilies.  Her younger sister, Princess Genevieve, and her younger brother, Princes Charles Philippe, Duke of Nemours, are not married.

Duke of Connaught keeps fit by exercises

July 26, 1921

The Duke of Connaught looks more like King George's brother instead of his uncle, reports the New York Times.  The Duke, now 71, explained how he keeps fit in a speech "he made at the distribution of prizes at Dulwich College."

"I am getting on in age now," the Duke said, "but I still do my physical exercises every morning.  I don't think I should be happy without them."

Queen again to be a mother

July 26, 1907

An official announcement was made this morning in Italy, according to a dispatch to the Los Angeles Times.  Queen Elena of Italy is in "interesting condition and that an accouchement is expected in a few months."

Queen Elena and King Vittorio Emanule are the parents of three children, Princess Jolanda, 6,  Princess Mafalda, 4, and Crown Prince Umberto, who will celebrate his fourth birthday in September.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Prince Aage wounded in Morocco

July 25, 1925

Prince Aage of Denmark, a captain in the French Foreign Legion, has been wounded "while fighting Abd-el Krim's Riffians in Morocco," reports the Associated Press.  The dispatch is based on information received  by his relatives in Rome.

Prince Aage is married to Countess Mafalda Calvi di Bergolo, whose brother is married to Princess Jolanda of Italy, the eldest daughter of King Vittorio Emamuele and Queen Elena."

The report does not state the seriousness of the prince's wounds. 

An interesting article on the new Princess of Monaco

Friday, July 22, 2011

Princess Katrin of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha - an appreciation

Grein Mayor Manfred Michmayer described the late Princess Katrin of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha as a "sociable woman who sought contact with Grein forever."  She was much admired and popular in the small Austrian town. She often took part in events within Grein and at her home, Schloss Greinburg, where she usually opened the Danube River Festival.

She was known as Princess Katya.  But when cancer struck, and she became increasingly weak,  Princess Katrin withdrew from public life.

Katrin Anna Dorothea Bremme was born on April 22, 1940 in what would become East Berlin.  At the age of 15, Katrin and her family moved to West Berlin.   Three years later, at the age of eighteen, she emigrated to Argentina with an uncle.   She spent four "carefree years" in Argentina, and it was in this South American country, where she met for the first time her future husband,  Prince Friedrich Josias of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, a great-grandson of Queen Victoria, and head of the house of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.

In 1962,  Katrin and Friedrich Josias moved back to Germany, and lived in Hamburg, where they were married two years later.  Their wedding was attended by "many representatives of European nobility."

Three years after the wedding,  the Prince and Princess moved to Schloss Greinburg in Grein Austria, a property that had been in Coburg family since 1823.  Prince Friedrich Josias commuted between Coburg and Grein.

Sadly for Katrin, her marriage was childless although she had four stepchildren by her husband's first two marriages.  After Prince Friedrich Josias's death in 1998 at Grein,  Princess Katrin continued to live at Schloss Greinburg until her death last week.

A memorial service was held at the palace's chapel on Tuesday before her remains were transferred for burial in Coburg.,675072

King Harald condemns gruesome attacks

King Harald of Norway spoke to the Norwegian people on Friday night following the heinous attacks in Oslo and Utoya Island, where at least 80 people were killed.

“Now it’s important that we stand together and support each other, and that we don’t let fear take over."

A Norwegian man, Anders Behring Breivik, is in police custody.

More European royals than Jordanians at Prince Rashid's wedding

Prince Rashid bin El Hassan  married Zeina Shaban today in the Basman Palace in Amman, Jordan  Prince Rashid is the son of Prince El Hassa bin Talal and Princess Sarvath El Hassan.

Plenty of European royals in attendance:  
Princess Margarita of Baden,  Queen Noor, Queen Anne Marie of the Hellenes, Prince El Hassan and Princess Sarvath, the bride and groom,  King and Queen of Jordan, King of Bahrain Queen Sofia of Spain, the Duke of Edinburgh,  Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel of Sweden

Princess Sophie of Isenburg, Prince Georg Friedrich of Prussia, the Crown Princess of Bulgaria, Princess Margriet of the Netherlands, Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine of Serbia, unknown Arab couple,  Archduchess Marie Astrid and Archduke Christian of Austria, Princess Margaretha and Prince Nikolaus of Liechtenstein, Prince Lorenz of Belgium.

  Princess Laurentien and Prince Constantijn of the Netherlands,  Diane de Nassau  and Prince Jean of Luxembourg, Prince Leopold of Baden, the Margrave and Margravine of Baden, Prince Felix of Luxembourg, Prince Guillaume and Princess Sibilla of Luxembourg.  Princess Marilene and Prince Maurits of Orange-Nassau stand behind Margaretha and Nikolaus of Liechtenstein.  Behind Maurits and his wife are Prince and Princess Ludwig of Baden.

Prince Michael of Baden, the Hereditary Prince and Princess of Baden.  Behind the Margrave of Baden, Prince Louis and PrincessTessy of Luxembourg. 

The new princess is one of Jordan's most honored and respected athletes.  She started out as a gymnast, but found more succcess in table tennis, representing Jordan at the Athens and Beijing Games.

new details on the Preussen - Isenburg nuptials

More than 700 guests, including members of the Bavaria, Baden, Hesse,Hohenzollern, Hannover, Saxe-Coburg, Saxony and Solms, will attend the wedding of Prince Georg Friedrich of Prussia and Princess Sophie of Isenburg.

The wedding will take place on August 27 at the Friedenkirche (Peace Church) in Potsdam.   The wedding will be an ecumenical service as the groom is Lutheran and the bride is Roman Catholic.  The officiating ministers will be the Rev. Michael Wohlrab, pastor at the Church of the Ascension at the Kaiserin Auguste Victoria Foundation at the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem, and Father Gregor Graf Henckel von Donnersmarck, retired abbot of the Cisterian monastery in Heilgenkreuz near Vienna.

Most of the wedding details remain secret, but Michaela Blankart, director  of the Prussian royal houses family foundation, tells Die Welt that the bride will a designer wedding gown, and a historic veil and tiara from the princely house of Isenburg.  Princess Sophie and her father, Franz Alexander, the Prince of Isenburg, will arrive at the church in a silver Rolls Royce, owned by a friend of Prince Georg.

The nave of the church will be decorated with white larkspur from the Potsdam gardens.  The dress code for the wedding will be cutaway or dark suits for men and short dresses or suits with hats for the women.

After the religious wedding, the newly married couple will get into a blue landau for a carriage ride through the park.   This will be followed by a reception at the former palace of Friedrich the Great for 1300 guests including ambassadors and politicians, and representatives of the Lutheran and Roman Catholic churches.   The final reception will be a dinner at the Orangery in Sanssouci for about 350 family members and friends.

The couple have received a wedding gift from the  Königlichen Porzellan-Manufaktur in Berlin, a specially designed dish service in pale blue with the Prussian eagle initials GG and S decorated in 24-karat gold.

PPrince Georg Friedrich works in Rostok for a company that markets patents from universities.  Sophie is employed by Maecenata, a firm headed by Count Rupert von Strachwitz.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Official: Prince Andrew steps down as trade envoy

.Buckingham Palace has confirmed that the Duke of York will step down as Trade Envoy.  According to the Guardian,  the Duke of York "is expected to announce that he will concentrate on boosting skills training and apprenticeships in Britain in future, in what is bound to be seen as a significant downgrading of his role. Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge are expected to take a greater part in promoting trade during their future foreign trips."

The current issue of Vanity Fair has an interesting expose by Edward Klein:

Montenegro gets a prince ... sort of

On Tuesday, the little country of Montenegro got a prince ... well sort of!   Montenegro's Parliament approved a new law "On the status of the descendants of the dynasty of Petrovic-Njegosh."  The vote was approved by the country's two leading political parties, the Democratic Party of Socialists and the Social Democratic Pary.   Two other parites, the Deputies from the Socialist People's Party and the New Serbian Democracy party, voted against the legislation, although neither party could muster enough votes to overturn the majority. 
The two latter parties see the law as revisionist history, as the text of the law includes a provision "that the dynasty of Petrovic-Njegosh was ousted from the throne as the result of the annexation of Montenegro by Serbia in 1918.  This provision has also been criticized by Montenegro's president.

Prince Nikola, the current head of the house, expressed his thanks to the government and to the people of Montenegro for the "correction of great historic injustice," and for the "historical and rehabilitation of the Montenegrin dynasty."
The Prince added: "The Assembly of Montenegro returned dignity to me and my family, and pride and dignity to the Montenegrin dynasty."
In implementing the law, the Montenegrin government will provide 4.3 million euros for seven years.   The law also requires the establishment of the Petrovich Njegos Fund, which will be headed by a member of the dynasty whose "activities will be aimed at promoting the culture of Montenegro."

The new law also allows for the descendants in the male line (as well as their spouses) to obtain Montengrin nationality, but they will also be allowed to maintain their first nationality.  Prince Nikola and his two children are French citizens.

Nikola and his family will have a home built for them in Cetinje, and they will also be given an apartment in Podgorica.   They will also have use of the late King Nikola's house in Njegusi, as well as the gardens and meadow lands.

Nikola will receive a monthly salary equivalent to the President's monthly salary.  He will also act as an official representative of the Montenegrin government.  Earlier this month, Nikola carried out his first duty, representing the Prime Minister at Archduke Otto's funeral.   The new law also requires that Prince Nikola and other members of the dynasty received full state protocol when carrying out official engagements.

This is a very interesting event.  Apart from the historical fact that the Montenegrin dynasty was not overthrown.   King Nikola supported Serbian unity, and the Montenegrins chose to become a part of the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes.  King Nikola's eldest daughter, Zorka, married Peter Karageorgevitch, the parents of Alexander I.

Nikola died in 1921.  He was succeeded, in exile, by his eldest son, Danilo, who was married Princess Jutta of Mecklenburg-Strelitz.  The marriage was without issue.  On March 7, 1921, only six days after his father's death,  Danilo abdicated in favor of his nephew, Michael, the son of the late Prince Mirko.

Michael had recognized the unification of Montenegro and Serbia.  Having renounced his rights to the Montenegrin throne, he was a member of King Peter II of Yugoslavia's Crown Council.
He also swore his loyalty to the Yugoslav monarchy.  His cousin, Alexander I, granted him a pension.
During the second world war,  Michael and his wife, Genevieve Prigent, were taken prisoners by the Germans.  Although the German and Italian officials offered the prince the Montenegrin throne, naturally with the support of the Germans and Italians,  Michael refused the offer.

Michael's aunt, Queen Elena of Italy, secured the family's release in 1943.  Michael and his wife returned to Paris to live, where they were soon arrested, again, by the Germans.  This time, the couple were sent to an internment camp in Czechoslovakia. 

The couple's only son, Prince Nikola, was born in this camp in 1944.   After the war, the family was repatriated to Paris.  Michael's marriage collapsed, and ended in divorce in 1949.  Two years later,  Michael, who once served King Peter II, now in exile,  became close to Yugoslavia's new leader, Marshall Tito.   He became Yugoslavia's Head of Protocol for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

One wonders what cousin Peter thought about this betrayal as Michael and his family moved into their new home in Belgrade.  It didn't take long for Prince Michael to realize that Tito was actually a Communist, and had no plans to restore the monarchy in Yugoslavia or support an independent Montenegro.

By the summer of 1948, the family was back on Paris.  A year later, the marriage was over.  Genevieve received custody of young Nikola and raised him largely as a single mother.  Growing up in France, Prince Nikola barely saw his father.  He knew very little about Montenegro.  He was raised and educated as a Frenchman.

Nikola, an architect by profession, married Francine Navarro in 1976.  They had two children, Princess Altinai (1977) and Prince Boris (1980.)  Although Nikola I's children made a series of dynastic marriages,  the present Prince Nikola has very few ties to other European royal houses, including Serbia.

In Serbia,  Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine have active roles, especially with charities.   It is high time the Serbian government formalize and recognize the Karageorgevich dynasty's contribution to Serbia.  All three of the Crown Prince's sons, Hereditary Prince Peter, Prince Philip and Prince Alexander live outside the country, they return often for family events.  All three young men are intensely proud of their Serbian heritage.

It's from Taki .. about Albert and Charlene

A few grains of salt and a margarita (and with the heat here, I could use a few frozen mango margaritas)

the comments are from Taki on Prince Albert  ... enough said:

King Albert II says political standoff not good for Belgium

King Albert II of the Belgians said Wednesday that the country's "lengthy political stalemate could permanently damage" the country and "hurt the cause of European integration," reports the Voice of America.

He said during his national day speech:  "On this national day, I would have liked to enjoy with you the swearing in of a new government. Alas, we are not there yet, and I deplore this," he said.
Banging the table during Wednesday's broadcast from his castle just outside Brussels, the king castigated "ignorant" voters and painted a pessimistic picture of the divisions between Dutch and French speaking communities.
"Our current situation is a cause for concern among our partners and could damage our position in Europe, and even the momentum towards European integration which has already been undermined by populism and Euroscepticism."

Belgium has been without an elected government for 14 months.

Carol proclaims himself king; awaits call to Romania

July 21, 1927

News sources, including the New York Times, are reporting that former Crown Prince Carol of Romania has "proclaimed himself King."   After being "refused admittance" to Carol's Neuilly villa, the New York Times' reporter telephoned the Crown Prince's home.   A man answered the phone, claiming to be Carol's secretary, but, in fact, the voice on the other end was Carol himself.   The reporter asked if the Prince was ready to make a statement.  The responses were very discreet.

"Will Your Royal Highness tell me." the reporter asked in French.  Carol responded, also in French, "I now call myself 'Majesty.'

The New York Times corresponded noted that this was "certainly the first time in history that a King had ever announced over the telephone that he was King.

Later today, the New York Times received a written announcement, where Carol confirmed the conversation:
"King Carol of Rumania, grievously suffering because of the loss of his father, to whom he was most affectionately devoted, and profoundly moved in his devotion to the dead sovereign, regrets he cannot at present make any communication to the press. He cannot at present formulate the declaration which should be made in the present situation."

Carol has also sent telegrams to members of his family in Bucharest, "expressing his desire to come and be present" at the funeral of his late father, King Ferdinand. He has not received a response.

He will remain in Paris if the Romanian government and the Court allow him to come to Bucharest to attend the funeral.   Carol has alternative plans to attend a memorial service in Paris for the late king, which will be held at the same time as the funeral in Bucharest.

Carol's supporters believe that the Regency will be short-lived and he will be called back as King. 

"They will have to send for me.  Bratiano is not strong enough now to hold down the situation for fourteen years -- he isn't now. I have only to wait."  He added: "I am patient because there is not the slightest doubt about my coming back to Rumania, called there by the nation as its legitimate sovereign."

Carol lives in a villa in Neuilly with his companion, Elena Lupescu.

The Prince and Princess of Monaco speak out against the rumors

The Prince and Princess of Monaco are now back in Monaco after visiting South Africa, and then spending a week or so in Mozambique.
The Prince invited several journalists to the palace to discuss the rumors about the wedding.,,20511845,00.html

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Andrew to step down as Trade Rep

Update: more on the story, again from the  Daily Mail

So reports Richard Kay in Thursday's Daily Mail  (apparently not yet official, as the Duke of York has not yet made the announcement.)

An allowance for Sophie

July 20, 1889

Princess Sophie of Prussia, who will marry Prince Constantine, the heir to the Greek throne in October, is to receive £100,000 out of "the private fortune of  her father, the late Emperor Friedrich," according to the report in the New York Times, which is based on a dispatch from the London Truth.    The Princess has also been given £15,000 from her mother, Empress Friedrich.    

These sums will be invested in Germany, and the Princess will be able to draw on the interest.   The capital will "ultimately be divided among the children."  But if Sophie dies without issue, the money will be divided between her three sisters, Charlotte, Viktoria and Margarete, and her brother, Prince Henry.  

Princess Sophie will also receive an annuity of £4000 a year from the Hohenzollern family fund.

Former German Crown Prince Wilhelm has died

all images from my personal collection

Baptism of Princess Felicitas of Prussia

July 20, 1951

Former Crown Prince Wilhelm of Germany, eldest son of the late Kaiser Wilhelm II, died today at his villa in Hechingen. He was 69 years old.   The "heir apparent" to the former German Empire,  died after a long illness "within sight of an eighty room Hohenzollern castle he lacked the money to live in."

His estranged wife, Crown Princess Cecilie, rushed to Hechingen from her home in Bad Kissingen but arrived shortly after Wilhelm had died.  The cause of death is arterial sclerosis, reports the Associated Press.

Wilhelm, a great-grandson of Queen Victoria, "lived out two of the most destructive wars in history and two shattering German defeats.  After the end of the first world war, and the establishment of the republic,  the Kaiser and his eldest son were forced into exile.   Wilhelm II was allowed to live at Doorn, in the Netherlands, while his son was sent to Wieringen, "a lonely island in Holland's Zuyder Zee."

He returned to Germany after several years but fled to the French zone after the Russians occupied the former Hohenzollern estates in Brandenburg after World War II.

Prince Friedrich Wilhelm Viktor August Ernst of Prussia was born at the Marmorpalais in Potsdam on May 6, 1882, as the eldest son of Kaiser Wilhelm II and his wife, the former Auguste Viktoria of Schleswig-Holstein.  He went through "the usual courses of instruction" for a German prince, including attending the Prince's academy at Plön.

He was an "enthusiastic sportsman, liked English country-house life, had many American friends, and in general, seemed to prefer the life of an English gentleman to that of a Prussian prince."  He was regarded by many as someone who would be a "safe Emperor and give Germany a rest from" his father's "strenuous rule."

On June 6, 1905,  the Crown Prince married Duchess Cecilie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin.  The marriage, at first "extremely happy," seemed to stead Wilhelm and he saw his popularity increase, "for he married a girl who was herself tremendously well-liked and who understood not only the value of such popularity but how to keep it."

Crown Prince Wilhelm continued to assert himself more  and found that "public sentiment sided with him against his father."  He and his wife "set a very lively social pace in Berlin," and the birth of their sons "increased their favor with the people."  He was "wont to spend almost every other week under arrest at his father's order," but as he grew older, he sought a position of more responsibility, and found he had many supporters.

He supported "German nationalistic policies," especially concerning the military, and he looked forward to the then coming "world conflict."  But Germany's defeat in the first world war changed how Crown Prince Wilhelm I was perceived.  He was "accused of tactical blunders" during Germany's failed attempt to capture Verdun in 1914.  But it would be proven later that the "rulings of the German Imperial Headquarters" and not Crown Prince Wilhelm's "influenced the results."

After the first world war, the former Crown Prince became more active in the Nationalist movement.  he was encouraged by "influential industrialists" to spend more time in Berlin, and he began to dress often in uniform.   There were suggestions that Wilhelm should become President and "then declare a regency."  During Germany's Parliamentary crisis in 1932, many believed that the Crown Prince's day had come and that the loyal Hindenburg should declare him regent, and "make way for him."

But it was Adolf Hitler who came into power, and he soon established himself as a dictator.  Crown Prince Wilhelm "accepted the situation," and "enrolled in the Nazi motor corps."  His sons "won commissions in the German armed forces after Hitler had relaxed the restrictions established by the Treaty of Versailles.

By 1935, Crown Prince Wilhelm was seen as an "asset" to Hitler, but despite the "popular and governmental favor" that he enjoyed, he failed to get Hitler "to sanction the return of his father, the Kaiser."   Hitler's response was an emphatic "No!"  

Crown Prince Wilhelm and his brothers were not "admitted to active service by the Nazi regime," after the outbreak of the second world war in 1939, three of his sons served in the German army.  His eldest son, Wilhelm, was killed in action.   His youngest son, Friedrich, was interned in Scotland during the war.

In 1938,  his second son, Prince Louis Ferdinand, married Grand Duchess Kira of Russia, the younger daughter of the heir to the Russian throne.  The Kaiser died in 1941.

Little was heard of the Crown Prince during World War II.  He was found by French troops in Baad, Austria, where he had been hiding.  He was brought before the French commander, and the only thing he could say was to ask to be returned to "the comforts of his chalet."

General de Lattre de Tassigny told him: "You certainly have lost your sense of dignity.  In the face of your country's collapse, you. a man of 65, care for nothing but your own comfort and a woman who pleases you.  You are lamentable, Monsieur, and that is all I have to say to you."

Crown Prince Wilhelm is survived by his wife, Crown Princess Cecilie,  his two surviving sons,  Prince Louis Ferdinand, and Prince Friedrich, who lives in England with his wife, Lady Brigid Guinness, and their children, and two daughters, Princess Alexandrine, and Princess Cecilie, who is married to an American, Clyde Harris, of Amarillo, Texas.    Wilhelm's third son, Prince Hubertus, died last year.

Prince Louis Ferdinand, an executive with the German branch of the Ford Motor Company, succeeds as head of the House of Hohenzollern.

Ferdinand is dead, succeeded by five-year-grandson, Michael

July 20, 1927

The New York Times is reporting the death of King Ferdinand of Romania, who succumbed earlier today, "after many months of painful illness," at 2:15 a.m.  He died in the arms of his consort, Queen Marie,  to whom he uttered his last words:  "I feel very tired," the king said quietly before closing his eyes, and "dropping off to sleep."  He died several minutes later, "so quietly" that the new King and every other member of the Royal family, with the exception of exiled former Crown Prince Carol, "failed to recognize its coming."

The King's doctors soon "became aware Ferdinand's enfeebled heart had ceased to beat."  He had been in a coma for several hours, but recovered consciousness for a few minutes before his death."  He managed to "bade farewell" to each of his three daughters, Elizabeth, Marie and Ileana, "in a weak voice."  As he kissed his young grandson, Michael, for the last time, the little boy "broke into loud weeping."

Five-year-old Michael now succeeds Ferdinand as king, "under a pre-arranged Regency."  By command of the Bratiano government, the borders are closed to Michael's father, former Crown Prince Carol. who remains in Paris.

King Ferdinand's final act was to confirm the "outcome of the national election," where Ion Bratiano remains Premier.

The King died at Sinaia. His body will be transported by royal train to the Cotroceni Palace in Bucharest at 6 p.m., tomorrow, and will lie in state until the funeral on Saturday.  Burial will take place in the royal vault at Curtea Argea, where the king's remains will be placed beside his uncle, King Carol I, and his consort, Queen Elisabeth.

Young King Michael was proclaimed King before the National Assembly this afternoon.   The "fair-haired little son" of Crown Prince Carol, drove through the crowded streets of Bucharest in an open automobile with his mother, Princess Helen, and his grandmother, Dowager Queen Marie. 

The new king and his mother and grandmother also attended a brief religious service in the Cathedral before he was "escorted to the Royal Tribune in the National Legislature.  He sat in a "huge-throne like chair between his mother and Queen Marie." Although both women were dressed in mourning,  Michael wore a white sailor suit, which was as "conspicuous as a fleck of sunshine amidst dark shadows."   The Regency, which includes Carol's younger brother, Prince Nicholas, was also sworn in, and all took the "solemn oath of allegiance to their new ruler."

The military garrisons also swore loyalty to the new king.  By evening, King Michael and his mother returned to Cotroceni palace, where they will live.

Funeral arrangements are not complete.   The late King's three daughters, Queen Elisabeth of Greece, Queen Marie of Yugoslavia and Princess Ileana will return to Bucharest tomorrow.  King Alexander of Yugoslavia is with his wife.  King George II of Greece has already arrived in Bucharest.    It is not known if any other "crown heads" will attend the funeral.

The new king's father, Carol, will not be present for the funeral.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Helen in London for holiday

Embed from Getty Images 

 July 19, 1931

Former Queen Helen of Romania, no longer entitled to be called Majesty, arrived in London late last night.  She said she will remain in the country until October.

There were no representatives from the Romanian or Greek legations to greet Helen and her brother, former King George II of the Hellenes, when they arrived by train.    Helen could hardly wait for the train to halt "before jumping off and embracing her mother," Dowager Queen Sophie of Greece, who was waiting on the platform with other members of her family.

Princess Helen bent down to kiss her 11-year-old niece, Princess Alexandra, the daughter of Princess Aspasia, and the late King Alexander, and then took her mother's arm as they walked arm-in-arm along the platform.

Princess Helen is staying at a hotel in Mayfair.   She spoke to reporters after checking in.  "I have come abroad for a holiday to visit my family and to take a cure.  This journey has been undertaken in mutual understanding with the King and I will be returning at the end of October to be back for my sons birthday.
"This, I hope, will definitely end the annoying and harmful press campaign of these last months, as it is most unpleasant to me.  I always have disapproved, and always will, of being used as a subject of sensational press comment."

Helen recently renounced the title, Queen, and will known as the Princess of Romania," during her visit to England.  She is expected to visit King George V and Queen Mary at Buckingham Palace, where her brother, the former King of the Hellenes, "is a frequent and well-liked visitor."

One of Princess Helen's friends told a reporter that the princess has plans to make England her home, "probably for years."   She described Helen as "entirely happy" to be out of Romania, and with her family in England, "which she has loved since childhood."

Helen's mother, Sophie, is a granddaughter of Queen Victoria.

Mafalda to remain a Roman Catholic

July 19, 1925

Special "ecclesiastical arrangements" for the religious wedding of Princess Mafalda of Savoy to Prince Philipp of Hesse are now complete, reports the Associated Press.

The wedding "will be accompanied by all Catholic religious rites," apart from a special mass, "for which no special dispensation can be made."  This is due to canonical law.

Prince Philipp, a Lutheran, has "consented to permit" Princess Mafalda to "remain a Catholic," and he has also agreed to have their children raised in the Roman Catholic faith.

Carl Eduard takes control in Coburg

July 19, 1905

Carl Eduard, the Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha reached his majority today and "assumed the reins of government," reports the New York Times.    His "state entry into the capital was the occasion of much ceremonial."

The young duke, who celebrates his 21st birthday today, arrived at the Gotha railway station, where he was greeted with "military honors."    The state entry into the capital was "the occasion of much ceremonial."

The Duke proceeded to Schloss Friedenstein, where he was met by his mother, the Duchess of Albany.   The formal ceremony "of taking the oath installation" took place in the castle's throne room in the presence of representatives of Britain's King Edward VII, Kaiser Wilhelm II and other German rulers,  Cabinet officials and a "brilliant assemblage" of officials from the duchy were also present.

Carl Eduard, who was born Prince Charles Edward, the posthumous son of Prince Leopold, Duke of Albany, and his wife, Princess Helen of Waldeck und Pyrmont, became the heir to the Coburg duchy following the death of his first cousin, the Hereditary Prince Alfred of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha in early 1899, and the renouncement of their succession rights by his uncle, the Duke of Connaught, and his son, Prince Arthur of Connaught.     Prince Charles Edward was a student at Eton when he learned the news that he was now first in line to the Coburg throne.

Shortly before leaving Eton to move to Germany, the young prince told his friends at Eton: "I've got to go and become a beastly German Duke."

The process to turn the young English prince and royal duke into a German began immediately, and he was sent to school in Berlin.   The process has "apparently been productive of the desired results."   The Duke, according to the most recently released photographs, "is quote as German in appearance as another other Prince in the empire.

During Carl Eduard's minority, Saxe-Coburg had been ruled by the Prince of Hohenlohe-Langenburg,  whose wife, Alexandra, was the third of four daughters of the late Duke Alfred.

Duke Carl Eduard will receive $75,000 a year out of the "income of the Gotha domains," and "one-half of the excess of revenue over expenditures from the Coburg domains."

The legislative power is vested in the sovereign in "conjunction with the two separate chambers," one for Coburg and the other for Gotha.

The Cambridges move into Kensington Palace

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have moved into a "modest" apartment within the confines of Kensington Palace, the Daily Mail reports.   The apartment was not identified, but it could be one in the area of the Clock Tower, where the late Princess Alice, Countess of Athlone, resided for many years.\

Monday, July 18, 2011

The sister who won't be at Zara's wedding

In 1983,  Heather Tonkin, a New Zealand art teacher attended a riding clinic taught by Mark Phillips, then married to Princess Anne.  A year later, they met again for what can only be described as a one-night stand.   Neither Heather, who was "infatuated" with Mark, nor Mark, apparently used birth control, and nine months later, in August 1985, Heather gave birth to Mark's third child, a daughter, Felicity.

Miss Tonkin was eventually able to obtain a confidential settlement for Felicity, although Mark Phillips has never publicly acknowledged that he is Felicity's father, although a DNA test confirmed the relationship.

Felicity has never met Phillips and does not have any contact with her three half-siblings.  Mark also has a daughter by his second wife, Sandy.

Zara and Felicity share a common DNA: the same father, but I think it is a stretch to call Felicity a relative. 
I’ve thought about telling my side of the story,’ she confided to a friend. ‘But I’m not sure there’s much point. I don’t want to create bother for them and I like my life quiet. I just like getting on with it.’

Felicity, an equine vet, told a friend:  " I’ve thought about telling my side of the story. But I’m not sure there’s much point. I don’t want to create bother for them and I like my life quiet. I just like getting on with it.’

Pope to allow Hesse-Savoy marriage: official!

Embed from Getty Images 

 July 18, 1925

The negotiations, which lasted for more than two months, the Vatican has issued a dispensation permitted the religious wedding between Princess Mafalda, King Vittorio Emanuele's second daughter, and Prince Philipp of Hesse, reports the Chicago Daily Tribune in an exclusive dispatch.

Princess Mafalda and Prince Philipp faced numerous obstacles, including religion and the Prince's unique position.    The Vatican had over worried concerns about the "future happiness of the Princess," who was marrying into a Protestant family.   The "usual precautions required by the rules governing mixed marriages appeared practically useless" in Prince Philipp's case.

Embed from Getty Images 

 The House of Hesse was one of the "first ruling houses to embrace the Reformation, becoming its supporter and defender, and even founding the first Lutheran university."   Vatican officials believed that "such a family would naturally bring up their offspring as Lutherans."  The Holy Office requires that the children of mixed marriages "must be educated as Catholics."

The Pope was called upon to "intervene to modify the unrelaxing attitude of the prelates.

Further written guarantees "were demanded" of Prince Philipp, who "solemnly promised never to interfere with the Princess's religious duties or the religious education of the children."

At the same time, King Vittorio Emanuele and Princess Mafalda, informed the Vatican that the "House of Savoy was most proud of its religion and would never tolerate its children becoming Protestants."

[The couple's eldest son, Prince Moritz, was baptized in the Roman Catholic church on August 9, 1926.  At some point, however, he became a Lutheran.  He was married according to the rites of the Lutheran church.]

Nicholas to be replaced by infant son?

July 18, 1905

According to the New York Times and other news sources, a prominent rumor regarding Nicholas II of Russia is current in St. Petersburg.  A large party of the Zemstvoists and Doumaists, now in Moscow,
"are in favor of the proclamation of the deposition of Emperor Nicholas, and the establishment of a Regency for the infant Czarevitch under four Grand Dukes."

The four grand dukes were not named.  Due to the alleged rumors, the meeting of the All-Russian Zemstvoist and Doumaist Congress, which was scheduled for tomorrow, has now been banned.

Austrian emperor invites granddaughter to spend winter with him

July 18, 1905

Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph has invited his granddaughter, Princess Otto of Windisch-Graetz, "with her husband and her two little boys, to spend the coming winter with him" as his guests at Schönbrunn, writes the Marquise de Fontenoy in her latest column.

Princess Otto is the only child of the late "ill-fated" Crown Prince Rudolf.  After his death, the former Archduchess Elisabeth was "brought up almost entirely under the supervision of her grandfather, the emperor."  Her mother, the former Crown Princess Stephanie, was allowed "little or no voice in her education."   She was also not permitted to take the young archduchess abroad, and as Stephanie traveled often, she saw very little of "the young archduchess," who was left "almost wholly to the mother and devoted Countess Condenhove, the grand mistress of the household. 

The relationship between Elisabeth and her mother has been further estranged by Stephanie's marriage with Count Lonyay.  Elisabeth remains "passionately devoted to the memory of her unhappy father, who she resembles in many ways," and she considers her mother's second marriage to "be an insult to his memory."

She refuses to have any contact with her mother's second husband."  Princess Otto renounced her title of archduchess and "her prerogatives as a princess of the reigning house of Austria, to accept when she married her husband's status of member of a mediatized family."  She rarely sees her mother, and, recently, the two have quarreled over the issue of money.

Princess Otto is "exceedingly rich," as she not only inherited her father's large fortune, but she also "benefited extensively under the will of her grandmother," the late Empress Elisabeth.  She was also "magnificently dowered by the emperor on the occasion of her marriage."

Stephanie is rather extravagant, and her daughter "has been obliged in self-defense" to turn a "deaf ear" to her mother's frequent demands for money.  Stephanie still receives a small allowance from the Emperor but she recently sold some of her jewels at public auction in Paris.

Franz Joseph has also let his daughter-in-law know that is not pleased with her decision to sue her father, King Leopold II of the Belgians, or to intervene with the situation between her sister, Louise, and the latter's estranged husband, Prince Philipp of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Archduke Otto's funeral - online

Here is the link to Austrian television's coverage of Archduke Otto's funeral on Saturday.

Lord Harewood's funeral

The Earl of Harewood's funeral was held earlier today at All Saint's Church, Harewood.   The funeral was attended by family and friends.  Opera store Lesley Garrett performed during the service.

Prince Michael of Kent represented Queen Elizabeth II.

A Thanksgiving Service to celebrate the late Earl's life will be announced soon by the family.

In another note, the late earl's youngest son, the Hon. Mark Lascelles will marry his fiancee, Judith Anne Kilburn,at Harewood on Saturday, July 16.

Latest news, rumors ... from Monaco!

The Spanish edition of Vanity Fair is reporting a new twist (and turn) in Monaco.   According to this report, which is published on their website,  Nicole Coste, the Togolese former flight attendant, who is the mother Albert's six-year-old son, Alexandre, turned up in Monaco four days before the wedding, after trying to contact the prince "a thousand ways."   She traveled to Monaco, and tried to enter the palace, but the palace guards would not let her in.

Nicole allegedly made a scene and started screaming.  Apparently, Charlene heard the screams, and she went to the courtyard to speak with Nicole.

The topic of the conversation is not known.  Nicole turned around and left.  The future princess "was never the same."

The source for this story is said to be "a very close friend to the royal family."  French news organizations -- not tabloids -- have reported the claims of an Italian woman, the mother of an 18-month-old child, and Nicole, who may have had a second child with Albert three years ago. 

Nicole and her son have been living in subsidized housing in Villefranche-sur-Mer not too far from Monaco, but there are reports that state she and Alexandre are now living in Switzerland.

And where are the newlyweds?  According to French news sources, the Prince and Princess flew to Kenya on Wednesday.

Princess Maria Adelaide of Italy married today

July 15, 1935

Princess Maria Adelaide of Savoy-Genoa, a cousin of King Vittorio Emanuele, was married today to Don Leone Massimo, Duke of Anticoli-Corrado, a member of an old Roman noble family.  The wedding took place at in the chapel of  the palace of  San Rossore in "the presence of members of the ruling family and 500 Italian aristocrats," according to the Associated Press dispatch.

Princess Maria Adelaide, is the fifth of sixth children of the late Prince Tommaso of Savoy-Genoa, Duke of Genoa, and Princess Marie Elisabeth of Bavaria.  Don Leone was born in 1896.

Ileana to wear gold and silver

July 15, 1931

Princess Ileana of Romania will be a "shining figure in gold and silver " when she marries Archduke Anton of Austria later this month.  The Associated Press reports that the princess's "bobbed auburn hair will be decked with a flowery veil embroidered with gold thread and her train will be resplendent with silver facing."

The veil and the train were made by two girls who are members of the Romanian Young women's Christian Association, founded by Princess Ileana.

Other details about the forthcoming wedding have also been announced.   The newlyweds will spend their honeymoon in a castle in the hills of southern Germany near Munich, a wedding gift from King Carol and the Prince of Hohenzollern. 

King Carol is "taking a personal interest" in his youngest sister's wedding, and is "supervising all the arrangements.

Royal Engagement news!!!

July 15, 1911

Princess Zita of Bourbon-Parma is to marry Archduke Karl of Austria, second in line to the throne, reports the Los Angeles Times in an exclusive direct wire.

The Princess recently retained from Rome, where she received "the papal blessing."  She will now go to Linz, where she will make "her obeisance to Francis Joseph."  This will be followed by a "great court ball" at Schönbrunn, but it is understood that the aged emperor nor the Duchess of Hohenberg, the morganatic wife of the heir presumptive to the throne, will be present.

The young Princess Zita "has long been an intimate friend" of Princess Victoria Luise of Prussia, the only daughter of Kaiser Wilhelm II.  The young Prussian princess herself was the subject of several rumors about a proposed marriage with Archduke Karl.

Zita is the thirteen of twenty children of Duke Roberto of Parma.   The engagement took place at the theamily's villa in Pianore in Tuscany, and is the "last of the late duke's Italian possessions and greatly favored as a summer residence."

Her mother, the widowed Duchess, is the Infanta Maria Antonia of Portugal, the "youngest and handsomest" of six Braganza sisters Their brother, Miguel, is the pretender to the Portuguese throne.

It is said that this engagement was arranged by Archduchess Maria Theresa, mother of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the heir to the throne.    Franz Joseph's youngest daughter, Archduchess Valerie, had "had spread a net to catch" Archduke Karl for her daughter, Archduchess Ella, but Archduchess Maria Theresa had the advantage.  Her sister is the Duchess of Parma,  and they conspired to bring Karl and Zita together.  Cupid "did the rest.

The marriage will take place in late October in the chapel of the imperial palace in Vienna.

von Hessen family sells Holbein Madonna for $70 million

The head of the princely house of Hesse has sold its most valuable piece of artwork, the Holbein Madonna.  The painting was sold to German collector Reinhold Würth.

  Hereditary Prince Donatus of Hesse, who heads the family's foundation, spoke recently with a reporter from the Frankfurter Allgemeine.

The reporter asks:  "How are you today?"    The Prince said he was feeling "ambivalent.  On the one hand, I am emotionally attached to the painting, on the other hand, I'm relieved because the sale is good for the future of the Hessian House Foundation."

The Prince said he considered visiting the painting, which had been on display at the Städel in Frankfurt, but he changed his mind earlier in the day because he knew people at the museum "and that would not have been right."  He also said his father, Moritz, the Landgrave of Hesse, was very fond of the Madonna.

Prince Donatus said his father had been involved in the rescue of the painting.  "The picture was moved during the Second World War, before the destruction of the castle in Darmstadt.  In December 1945, my father brought it back from the Veste Coburg.  The American trust that transported the painting caught fire. but my father was able to extinguish the fire, and the painting was saved."

The Prince's earliest memory of the painting was when he was fifteen.  "I grew up in Schleswig-Holstein,  and when we visited our aunt Princess Margaret [of Hesse and By Rhine], she took us to the Castle Museum in Darmstadt, showed us the picture, and explained its history.  This was a very memorable experience because you realized how much my aunt cared for this painting."

The prince was not involved in the negotiations for the sale of the painting.  The family foundation includes the prince and his three younger siblings, Princess Mafalda, Princess Elena, and Prince Philipp.

The four children received 57% from the sale of the painting.  The remaining 45% will go to the Hessian House Foundation, which controls Schloss Fasanerie, the gardens, the Schlosshotel Kronberg and the "Hessicher Hof."   Prince Donatus said the money will be put in a newly established charitable foundation and will help with the restoration of Schloss Fasanerie, near Fulda.

Schloss Fasanerie is currently under renovation?   

The prince responded: "Yes, with assistance from the federal and state governments.  Schloss Fasanerie was declared a national cultural moment.  The Fasanerie is a real gem, so I'm happy that the bottom line will be helped by the sale of the painting.  The money now gives us the opportunity to make Fasanerie truly sustainable."

In 2003, the Hesse family allowed the painting to be placed on a long-term loan in the Städel.

A group of American soldiers, who specialized in returning artworks to their rightful owners after the war, were involved with bringing the Holbein Madonna back to Darmstadt.  One of the soldiers involved in the rescue was Clyde Kenneth Harris of Amarillo, Texas.  It was in Darmstadt where he met his future wife, Princess Cecilie of Prussia, who was staying with Prince Ludwig and Princess Margaret of Hesse at their home, Schloss Wolfsgarten, in Langen. 

The sale was negotiated by Count Christoph Douglas.   Although the final purchase price was not made public, it is believed that the oil painting by Hans Holbein the Younger sold for more than $70 million.  The Städel museum's offer of $57 million was rejected. 

Reinhold Würth is a billionaire whose fortune comes from the manufacturer of "screws and other industrial hardware.

Count Christoph told Bloomberg news that this was "the most important painting sold in Germany since World War II.  I had other willing buyers but they wanted to take it out of Germany, which wasn't allowed.  I could probably have sold it for more than 100 million euros if it wasn't barred from export."

The 1525-8 oil painting is titled "The Madonna with the Family Meyer."  It was painted on commission for Jakob Meyer, mayor of Basel.  The Meyer family owned the painting for almost 100 years.

"It is the transition from the wonderful German late Gothic to the Renaissance," said Count Christoph.  "When you stand in front of it you see how mystical, wonderful it was."

Mr. Würth "pledged to keep the painting on public view."  He said that the Städel Museum in Frankfurt and the Landesmuseum in Darmstadt "will be the preferred borrowers of the artwork."