Thursday, May 9, 2013

Kaiser Wilhelm: grandson won't marry Dorothea

May 9, 1933

The marriage between Prince Wilhelm of Prussia and Dorothea von Salviati has been canceled, according to the Chicago Tribune. 

The Prince, eldest son of Crown Prince Wilhelm, is insisting, however, that his marriage only has been "postponed" because he and his fiancée want to marry "quietly without attendant ballyhoo."

The wedding was scheduled to take place in Bonn on May 16.  But when the "curious began flocking to the city," the prince and Miss von Salviati decided to postpone the wedding.  They "agreed to keep the date a secret,
 although they have told their closest friends.

But the real truth is that former Kaiser Wilhelm II, now living in the Netherlands, and Crown Princess Cecilie have been waging "a bitter fight against the marriage."  They feel that Miss von Salviati is an "aristocrat of small rank," and certainly not entitled to become the "queen of Prussia or empress of Germany."

The family battles have been going on for more than two years.  Prince Wilhelm has "spurned his mother's warnings" and insists he will marry Dorothea, who comes from an old Italian aristocratic family.

The Crown Princess has done everything a "fond mother does in these circumstances." She got her son's friends and members of German noble houses to "stage parties to distract the 26 year old prince's attention."

When these "tactics failed" Cecilie enlisted the help of her father-in-law.  Wilhelm II offered to an all-expenses paid cruise for his grandson, with "lavish funds for 'incidentals'". 

Prince Wilhelm would not budge.  Pressure was put on Dorothea's mother.  She was warned by court officials that her "daughter would be an unhappy bride in the knowledge that she was standing in the way" of Wilhelm's future.

The former Kaiser is now convinced that his plan has succeeded, and the marriage will not take place.

But Prince Wilhelm remains adamant.  "I am modern -- I  choose my own wife," he said recently. "I won't let the old family traditions handicap me.  If necessary I can work like anybody else.  The wedding will take place soon but secretly."

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