Monday, September 30, 2013

Court date for Nicholas Brandram

Nicholas Brandram is the son of Paul Brandram and his first wife, Jennifer.  He is a grandson of Princess Katherine of Greece, youngest child of King Constantine I and Queen Sophie of the Hellenes.   After her marriage, Katherine was styled in the UK as The Lady Katherine Brandram.^headlines

The article was written by a Daily Mail reporter, Harriet Arkell, who doesn't have a clue about good research.  She claims the late Lady Katherine Brandram and Prince Philip were distant relatives.  They were first cousins, as their fathers were brothers! Typical sloppy work by a Mail "reporter."

Sunday, September 29, 2013

A profile of Prince Alfred of Prussia

A profile of the late Prince Alfred of Prussia published recently in a Costa Rican newspaper.  I did know some of this information, including the Croatian "mobsters" holding Alfred, but chose not to write about it. 

You can hit the translate button on your browser as the article is in Spanish.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Princess Patricia to wed

Embed from Getty Images 

 September 27, 1913

Princess Patricia of Connaught is engaged, according to the Chicago Daily Tribune, based on reports from London.

This is not the first time the papers have reported an engagement for the youngest daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Connaught, but this time "they are right." 

The official announcement is expected shortly, and the "betrothal will be a real one." The wedding is expected to take place early next year.

The "lucky man" is Hereditary Grand Duke Adolf Friedrich, heir to the Grand Duchy of Mecklenburg-Strelitz.  The young man is the grandson of the Dowager Duchess of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, the former Princess Augusta of Cambridge, who is said to be "responsible for the royal match."   The Dowager Grand Duchess is the elder sister of the late Duchess of Teck and the aunt of Queen Mary.

The young heir must marry as  he is the "direct line"  of the grand ducal family is "in danger of dying out."  This is the primary reason why Augusta is so "anxious for the young people to marry."   If she can bring this marriage off, she will have every reason to be "proud of her ability as a real matchmaker."  She will have succeeded, where the late King Edward VII,  failed to find a husband for his niece.

The British monarch has so far failed to secure a marriage for his niece.   Finding a husband for the princess has been a "difficult problem."  Patricia is very beautiful, she is full of charm and she is one of the "most attractive and popular" members of the royal family.

She has been matched with several eligible young royals. She flirted with the young men, and she "led them to believe that perhaps she really cared,"  but when the proposal came, she would laugh, and say, "no."

The 27-year-old princess is old enough to seriously consider marriage.  She was born on St. Patrick's Day in 1886, and was named Victoria Patricia Helen Elizabeth, and has always been known as Patricia. Her father is the Governor-General of Canada, and the only surviving son of Queen Victoria.

Her German-born mother, Princess Louise Margaret of Prussia, has no doubt had ambitious dreams for both her daughters.  She was determined to secure thrones for Princess Margaret, her elder daughter, and Princess Patricia.   In 1905, she married Prince Gustav Adolf of Sweden, then second in line to the Swedish throne.  He is now the Crown Prince, and Margaret is the Crown Princess of Sweden, a future Queen Consort.

Princess Patricia would not be so lucky.  She is  determined to marry for love, and is alleged to have said: "I won't marry until I find the man I want."

The late King Edward considered King Alfonso XIII of Spain as a potential suitor.  After Patricia turned him down, he married her first cousin, Princess Ena of Battenberg.  

A throne was not the end-all and be-all.  Edward also thought Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovich of Russia would be a good match.  He was a nephew of Queen Alexandra.  They liked each other, but there would be no engagement.   Patricia was also reported to be in love with Prince Eitel Friedrich of Prussia, the son of her first cousin, Kaiser Wilhelm II.  Sadly, the reports were only rumors.  The story about a romance was without foundation.

The Marquess of Anglesey was also said to pursuing the young princess.  He is one of the richest aristocrats in England, good-looking, and he owns several country homes. 

Some assume that King Edward wanted the Princess to marry a "man of higher rank."   Lord Anglesey's proposal was declined.

She was also linked with  Crown Prince Luis Filipe of Portugal, who was killed with his father, King Carlos I, in 1908.    Patricia thought he was a "nice boy," but she was not interested in marrying him or his younger brother, King Manoel.

It is said that the Count of Turin also pressed his suit, but it was unlikely that Princess Patricia of Connaught would marry a member of the Italian royal family.

No one has confirmed Princess Patricia's marriage, but it was announced today that Patricia's older brother, Prince Arthur of Connaught, will marry Princess Alexandra, the Duchess of Fife, in October. 

If you liked this article, perhaps you can buy me a cup of coffee

Can the Prince of Asturias act as regent?

Apparently, yes, according to Spain's Constitution:

Article 59  [Minority, Incapacity]
(1) When the King is a minor, the King's father or mother, in their absence the oldest relative closest to succession to the Crown pursuant to the order established by the Constitution, shall immediately exercise the Regency during the King's minority.
(2) If the King becomes incapable of exercising his authority and this incapacity is recognized by the Parliament, the Prince heir to the Crown shall immediately begin to exercise the Regency if he is of age.  If he is not, the procedure outlined in the previous paragraph will be adhered to until the Prince heir reaches adulthood.
(3) If there is no person who can exercise the Regency, it shall be appointed by the Parliament and shall be composed of one, three, or five persons.
(4) In order to exercise the Regency, it is necessary to be Spanish and of age.
(5) The Regency shall be exercised through constitutional mandate and always in the name of the King.

Royal Baptism: Prince George of Cambridge

Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are pleased to announce the christening of Prince George will take place on Wednesday, 23rd October at The Chapel Royal, St James’s Palace.
Prince George will be christened by The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Reverend Justin Welby.

Here is a list of other royal baptisms:

Queen Victoria: Cupola Room at Kensington Palace.  June 24, 1819

Princess Mary Adelaide of Cambridge at Cambridge House, Hanover, January 9, 1834 (mother of Queen Mary, consort of George V)

Princess Victoria: Throne Room, Buckingham Palace February 10, 1841
Edward VII: St. George's Chapel, Windsor. January 25, 1842
Princess Alice: Private Chapel, Buckingham Palace, June 2, 1843
Prince Alfred: Private Chapel, Windsor Castle, September 6, 1844
Princess Helena: Private Chapel, Buckingham Palace, July 25 1846
Princess Louise, Private Chapel, Buckingham Palace, May 13, 1848
Prince Arthur, Private Chapel, Buckingham Palace, June 22, 1850
Prince Leopold. Private Chapel, Buckingham Palace, June 28, 1853
Princess Beatrice, Private Chapel, Buckingham Palace, June 16, 1857

Prince Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence: Private Chapel, Buckingham Palace, March 10, 1864

King George V: Private Chapel, Windsor Castle: July 7, 1865
Queen Mary: Private Chapel, Kensington Palace, July 27, 1867

Princess Louise: Marlborough House, May 10, 1867
Princess Victoria: Marlborough House, August 6, 1868
Princess Maud: Marlborough House, December 24, 1869

Edward VIII: White Lodge, Richmond Park, July 16, 1894
George VI: St. Mary Magdalene Church, Sandringham, February 10, 1896
Princess Mary: St. Mary Magdalene Church, Sandringham, June 7, 1897
Prince Henry: Private Chapel Windsor Castle, May 17, 1900
Prince George: Private Chapel, Windsor Castle, January 26, 1903
Prince John:  St Mary Magdalene Church, August 3, 1905

Queen Elizabeth II: Private Chapel, Buckingham Palace, May 29, 1926
Princess Margaret: Private Chapel, Buckingham Palace, October 30, 1930

Duke of Kent, Private Chapel, Buckingham Palace, November 20, 1935
Princess Alexandra, Private Chapel, Buckingham Palace, February 9, 1937
Prince Michael of Kent. Private Chapel, Windsor Castle, August 4, 1942

Prince William of Gloucester: Private Chapel, Windsor Castle, February 22, 1942
Duke of Gloucester: Private Chapel, Windsor Castle, October 20, 1944

The Prince of Wales: Music Room, Buckingham Palace, December 15, 1948
Princess Anne: Music Room, October 21, 1950
Prince Andrew: Music Room, April 8, 1960
Prince Edward: Private Chapel, Windsor Castle, May 2, 1964

Duke of Cambridge: Music Room, August 4, 1982
Prince Harry: St. George's Chapel, Windsor, December 21, 1984

Princess Beatrice: Chapel Royal, St. James's Palace, December 20, 1988

Princess Eugenie: St. Mary Magdalene, Sandringham, December 23, 1990

Lady Louise Windsor: Private Chapel, Windsor Castle, April 24, 2004

Viscount Severn: Private Chapel, Windsor Castle, April 19, 2008

I think the most unique place for a royal baptism:  Princess Beatrice of Edinburgh, youngest daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh (Queen Victoria's second son, Alfred) was baptized on May 17, 1884 in the library of the family home, Eastwell House, in Kent.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

The death of a QVD: Prince Alfred of Prussia

Prince Sigismund of Prussia  (Arturo Beeche Collection)
Prince Alfred of Prussia (Arturo Beeche Collection)

Prince Alfred of Prussia (Arturo Beeche Collection)
@ Copyright Arturo Beeche
Princess Charlotte Agnes at her desk  (Arturo Beeche Collection)

San Miguel de Barranca,  Costa Rica (Arturo Beeche Collection)
the wedding of Prince and Princess Alfred of Prussia
Marlene A. Eilers Koenig Collection

Prince Alfred with a portrait of his great-grandmother, Princess Victoria (Kaiserin Friedrich)
Marlene A. Eilers Koenig collection

Prince and Princess Alfred at their wedding in Southampton, NY
Marlene A Eilers Koenig Collection

Prince and Princess Sigismund of Prussia soon after their arrival in Costa Rica
Marlene A. Eilers Koenig collection
My friend, Art Beeche, informed me earlier today about the death of Prince Alfred of Prussia, only son of the late Prince Sigismund of Prussia and the late Princess Charlotte Agnes of Saxe-Altenburg.  

According to Art,   Alfred "had been living with people who kept him from all those of us who knew and loved him."

Prince Sigismund was the second of three sons of Prince Henry of Prussia and Princess Irene of Hesse and By Rhine.  He married Princess Charlotte Agnes of Saxe-Altenburg in November 1919.  The couple's first child, Princess Barbara was born in 1920.  She married Duke Christian Ludwig of Mecklenburg-Schwerin.  They had two daughters, Donata and Edwina. 

Sigismund's older brother, Prince Waldemar, was the heir to Hemmelmark, near Eckernförde, the family estate.  This meant that Prince Sigismund would have to earn his own living in post-war Germany. By 1923, he represented a Hamburg "coffee-importing firm" in Central America, according to The Times.   Four years later, Prince and Princess Sigismund and their two young children, and their governess, made the move to Costa Rica.  They sailed on the Teutonia and arrived in the Central American country shortly before Christmas in December 1927.  The New York Times reported that Sigismund planned to "engage in banana and coffee planting  on land" he owned in Costa Rica.

The New York Times also noted that many Germans were "strongly entrenched in coffee planting" in Costa Rica and other Central American countries.   

Prince Sigismund also spent some time as the manager of an importing firm in Guatemala.  In June 1928, the Associated Press reported that Prince Sigismund was "determined to be the master of his own fate."  According to letters sent by the prince to his family at Hemmelmark, the Prince had decided to "raise bees and export honey to the Fatherland."

But within a few years, Prince Sigismund and his family returned to Costa Rica, and settled at San Miguel de Barranca.  In 1943, his named appeared on a "Proclaimed List of Certain Blocked Nationals," issued by the Department of State.  The list was an  executive order blocking individuals and firms with German, Italian and Japanese links from doing business in America during the second world war.
 He died at Puntarenas, Costa Rica, in 1978. His widow, Charlotte Agnes, died in 1989.

Prince Waldemar died in 1945 as the result of poor medical treatment. He was a hemophiliac.  He and his wife, Princess Calixta Agnes of Lippe, were childless.  His mother, Princess Irene, adopted Prince Sigismund's daughter, Princess Barbara, who had returned to Germany to live, as her heir.  Irene died in 1953, and Barbara inherited the Hemmelmark estates.  She died in 1994.  The main house was sold some years ago but Barbara's two daughters, Duchesses Donata and Edwina, still have property at Hemmelmark.

Prince Alfred Friedrich Ernst Heinrich Conrad was born on August 17, 1924. His wife, Maritza Farkas, died in 1996.

Prince Alfred died on June 3 at San Jose, Costa Rica.   He was 89 years old.

Prince Sigismund (Marlene A Eilers Koenig collection)

The wedding of Prince Sigismund of Prussia and Princess Charlotte Agnes of Saxe-Altenburg
Marlene A. Eilers Koenig collection

No privacy violation

Princess Caroline of Monaco has lost "another stage in her battle with the German press," according to the Press Gazette, a UK based journalism site,  The Fifth Section chamber of the European Court of Human Rights "rejected her complaint" about 7 Tage, a German magazine which published a photo of her and her husband, Prince Ernst August of Hanover on vacation.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Juliana not engaged to the Duke of Gloucester

September 25, 1933

There are "empathic denials" from London and Amsterdam tonight "following revival of the old rumor" that Princess Juliana of the Netherlands was about to announce her engaged to the Duke of Gloucester.

The New York Times reports "in no case have rumors of an English alliance for Princess Juliana been treated seriously" at the Dutch court or by the British royal family.

Princess Juliana, the only daughter of Queen Wilhelmina, was first linked with the Duke last summer, when she paid an informal visit to England.   At that time it was "explained frankly that no effort had been made" to introduce the heiress to the Dutch throne to "eligible royal or aristocratic bachelors here."

Elisabeth of Greece engaged

September 25, 1933

Princess Elisabeth of Greece is engaged to the Count of Toerring-Jettenbach, according to the Associated Press.

The engagement was announced by the Yugoslav Legation in London.

The 29-year-old Princess is the second of three daughters of Prince and Nicholas of Greece.  Her older sister, Olga, is married to Prince Paul of Yugoslavia, a cousin of King Alexander .

Count Carl-Theodor, 33, is a nephew of Queen Elisabeth of the Belgians, as his mother, Sophie, is Elisabeth's sister.

Luxembourgers to vote on their future

September 25, 1919

The citizens of the tiny grand duchy of Luxembourg will go to the polls on Sunday to "decide  whether they desire to maintain or suppress the ruling dynasty."  The plebiscite, the first of many "growing out of the war," will also offer Luxembourgers the right to decide whether or not to "conclude an economic arrangement with France or Belgium," according to the Associated Press.

The plebiscite does not include a provision to a "future form of government" if the voters choose to "suppress the dynasty."  It is understood, however, that the "grand duchy will remain an autonomous province" regardless how the citizens vote to "enter the economic compact."

The reigning Grand Duchess is Charlotte, sister of the former Grand Duchess Marie Adelaide, who succeeded her father, Wilhelm IV  in February 1912. 

Marie Adelaide abdicated after the signing of the armistice, and retired to Switzerland  because her "attitude at the declaration and during the war was considered not to be sufficiently anti-German.

Viktoria Luise sides with new husband

September 25, 1913

The German Imperial family is in a "word-splitting wrangle over the formalities in connection with " Prince Ernst August of Cumberland and his new wife, Princess Viktoria Luise, Kaiser Wilhelm II's only daughter, as Duke and Duchess of Brunswick-Luneburg.

This split, according to the New York Times, is based on information from "Hanoverian circles communicated" to the Berlin Tageblatt.

The wrangle nearly led to a "split in the German Imperial family," and a decision to withdraw from Germany by Prince Ernst August and Princess Viktoria Luise.

Prussian officials, according to the report, have "insisted on a more explicit renunciation" by Prince Ernst August to the Hanover throne.  Prince Ernst August would have none of this, and "declared that he would take off his Prussian uniform and retire to Gmunden, Austria," with his wife.

Chancellor von Bethmann-Hollweg has "yielded on the point," and is trying to find a new solution to the difficult and emotional situation.

Nicholas and Alexandra in Darmstadt

September 25, 1903

Emperor Nicholas II of Russia and his wife, and Alexandra, and their children arrived today in Darmstadt and received a "hearty welcome" from the Grand Duke Ernst Ludwig of Hesse and by Rhine  and the public, reports the New York Times.

Empress Alexandra is the Grand Duke's youngest sister. 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Such serious eyes

Marlene A Eilers Koenig Collection

This image of then Princess Kira of Russia, younger daughter of Grand Duke Kirill and Grand Duchess Victoria, was probably taken about 1912-1913.  The young Kira (who married Prince Louis Ferdinand of Prussia in 1938) looked rather serious as she faced the camera for a portrait.

The second image shows Kira's older sister, Maria, in a similar pose.  It is likely that these images were taken at the same time.
Marlene A Eilers Koenig collection

Russian Imperial Family portrait

Marlene A Eilers Koenig Collection
This is a unique royal postcard, published in France, probably early in the first world war.  I expect it is a composite photograph - early Photo Shop!

Friday, September 20, 2013

an Unofficial official visit ...

This is the Court Circular for the official royal engagements on September 19, 2013.

 BALMORAL CASTLE: Air Marshal Sir David Walker was received by The Queen this afternoon upon relinquishing his appointment as Master of the Household.

 BUCKINGHAM PALACE: The Duke of York today carried out the following engagements in Jakarta, Indonesia. The Sultan of Yogyakarta called upon His Royal Highness this morning. The Duke of York afterwards opened the new British Embassy in Mega Kuningan. His Royal Highness today attended the Closing Ceremony of the United Kingdom Indonesia Science and Innovation Conference at the Intercontinental Hotel. The Duke of York this afternoon attended a Lunch Meeting at the Intercontinental Hotel to discuss sustainable palm oil. His Royal Highness later called upon the Governor of Jakarta Capital City (Mr. Joko Widodo). The Duke of York this evening attended a Reception for the British Chamber Educational Alumni at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel. His Royal Highness subsequently attended a Dinner given by Sinarmas Group at the Grand Hyatt Hotel.

 BUCKINGHAM PALACE: The Earl of Wessex, Honorary Member, the British and Commonwealth Fire Company Foundation, this morning held a Meeting. His Royal Highness, Commodore-in-Chief, Royal Fleet Auxiliary, later received Commodore William Walworth upon relinquishing his appointment as Head of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary and Captain Robert Dorey upon assuming the appointment. The Earl of Wessex, Trustee, The Duke of Edinburgh's Award International Foundation, this evening attended the International Golf for Youth Dinner at Windsor Castle. The Countess of Wessex, Patron, Vision 2020: the Right to Sight, and Global Ambassador, International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness, this afternoon visited the Orbis Flying Eye Hospital at Kolkata International Airport, West Bengal, India, and was received by the Governor of West Bengal (Mr. M. K. Narayanan). Her Royal Highness, Patron, Vision 2020: the Right to Sight, and Global Ambassador, International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness, this evening attended a Reception in support of the Orbis Flying Eye Hospital at the ITC Hotel, Kolkata. BUCKINGHAM PALACE: The Princess Royal, Colonel-in-Chief, Royal Corps of Signals, this morning visited Exercise Horseshoe Focus (South), Okehampton Camp, Dartmoor, Devon. Her Royal Highness, President, the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce, this evening attended the President's Annual Lecture and Dinner at 8 John Adam Street, London WC2.

 What's missing? HRH Princess Beatrice of York's official visit to the Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Edinburgh is not mentioned in the Court Circular because the Princess is not an official working member of the Royal Family. She became Patron of the Sick Kids Friends Foundation in July. Princess Beatrice and her younger sister, Princess Eugenie, have been taking on duties on their own, but these duties are not official. In other words, they do not (technically) represent the Queen. Princess Beatrice is patron of at least five organizations, but she does not do them as a part of the Firm. The Royal Hospital for Sick Children was opened in 1895 by Princess Beatrice (Princess Henry of Battenberg), youngest daughter of Queen Victoria. Princes Beatrice is a definite asset to the Royal Family. There is a dearth of younger princesses to take on royal duties.

 The Princess Royal and HRH Princess Alexandra are the only two princesses of the Blood Royal who are working royals. Anne celebrated her 63rd birthday in August, and Princess Alexandra will turn 77 on Christmas Day. The Royal family can only benefit from including the York princesses in the roundup of official duties. There are no plans, however, to allow Beatrice and Eugenie to be official working royals ... and that's a shame.

Prince Felix and Princess Claire's wedding

@Ulrike Bartsch  all four photos
Ulrike Bartsch was one of the royalty watchers who braved the elements to snap some photos of Prince Felix and Princess Claire of Luxembourg's civil wedding.  She owns the copyright to these photos, and she graciously allowed me to use them.  Do not copy them or use them or download them.  Don't steal the property of others.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Charlotte and Gad not engaged

Gad Elmaleh, the French comedian, was in Alexandria, Virginia, this week, performing in French at the Birchmere.  He spoke briefly to the Washington Post.  

"No, I'm not engaged," he said, referring to his relationship with Princess Caroline's daughter, Charlotte Casiraghi.  He did confirm that Charlotte is expecting his child at the end of the year.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Juan Carlos looks frail

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima are in Spain for an official visit.   This video shows the new monarchs greeting King Juan Carlos I, Queen Sofia, and Infanta Elena.     They were met at the airport by the Prince and Princess of Asturias.

The 75-year-old King looks very frail, his face rather pasty.   Sweet to see some affection between the king and queen.  He is wearing a coral tie, matching the Queen's coral outfit.  Earlier in the video, she is seen giving him a kiss on the cheek.

Three Million and counting

Sometime this morning after 8:30 a.m.,  the three millionth visitor arrived at Royal Musings.  No idea who it was or what they read ... if anything ... but thank you ... and thank you to all the visitors, new and old, who come from historic royal news or what's happening now.  

Royal Musings debuted on July 7, 2008.

Three million visitors in five years!   Now that's something to muse about!

The two millionth visitor was on January 8, 2013.  Happy to say, this blog continues to grow.     Perhaps the 4 millionth visitor will be here in the spring of 2014.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Meanwhile, in the Netherlands

King Willem-Alexander's first speech before Parliament on Prinsjesdag.

"The classic welfare state of the second half of the 20th century in these areas in particular brought forth arrangements that are unsustainable in their current form."

The speech was written for the King by Prime Minister Mark Rutte's government.

Although the King is the sovereign, Queen Maxima was the golden girl today.

Prince Felix weds Claire Lademacher

all photos @ Cour Grand-ducale

Prince Félix of Luxembourg and German-born Claire Lademacher were married today in a civil ceremony at Villa Rothschild Kempinski  in Königstein im Taunus, Germany.

The bride's witness was her new sister-in-law, Princess Alexandra of Luxembourg, while Claire's brother, Felix, fulfilled the witness duties for Prince Félix.

The new princess wore an "off-white ensemble made from wool crepe and lace details in the top, with capped sleeves and nude heels."  The peplum dress was designed by Dutch designer Jan Taminiau.    Claire carried as bouquet of Avalanche Platinum roses and white hortensias, according to the Wort.

Prince Felix was dressed in a "classic dark suit with a orange tie," honoring the house of Nassau.

After the wedding and reception, the couple drove off in a 1958 BMW Isetta.

The couple will be married in a Roman Catholic ceremony in the south of France on Saturday.  370 guests are expected to attend the wedding and reception.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Royal wedding: official schedule

 © Cour grand-ducale / Private Collection

This is the official schedule for the civil & religious weddings for Prince Félix of Luxembourg and Miss Claire Lademacher. 

There will be no television coverage or live streaming of the two wedding ceremonies.

Wedding planner – The schedule
Tuesday September 17:
  • 12.30pm : Civil Wedding in "Königstein im Taunus" (Germany)
  • 12.45pm: Official family photo shoot
  • 2.30pm: Departure
Saturday September 21
  • 11.00am: Church ceremony in the Basilica of Sainte Marie-Madeleine Saint-Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume (France)
  • 13.00pm: Private reception

Interview with Prince Félix and Claire Lademacher

Courtesy of Wort, one of primary Luxembourg newspapers

(CS/hay) Prince Félix and Claire Lademacher will get married in just a few days. spoke with the bride and groom about love, the honeymoon and where they will live after the wedding.
Tell us, how did you get to know each other and since when are you a couple?
Prince Félix: We met in 2001 in Switzerland and the international boarding school Beau Soleil in Villars-sur-Ollon, which we both attended as part of our secondary school education. Over the years a close friendship developed, which stands at the beginning and is the foundation of our relationship.
Do you know where you will live after the wedding?
Félix: I just completed my university studies with a Master's in bioethics. After my studies I have to earn a living and provide for my family.
Claire Lademacher: Aside of my dissertation, which I am currently working on, we decided to begin our life as newlyweds in the south of France, where we will manage a family winery.
Why is the civil marriage in Königstein im Taunus and the church service at the Basilique Sainte Marie-Madeleine in Saint-Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume in the Départment Var?
Félix: It is tradition that the wedding is celebrated in the country where the bride was born. We want to keep this tradition, which, as I think, is a sign of respect towards the family of my future wife. Additionally, the history of Königstein is closely connected with the history of the Grand Ducal family, which enforces the symbolic nature of the choice even more.
Claire: We both like to remember the wonderful summer holidays, which we spent in the south of France at the house of my parents near Lorgues or with my future parents-in-law in Cabasson, just the two of us or with our families and friends. The idea to get married in the Provence came up all by itself, because we wanted to extend these precious moments with our loved ones.
Can you reveal how many guests are invited to the religious service?
Félix: We are expecting around 350 guests.
The honeymoon is always very special for the newlyweds. Where will you spend yours?
Félix: The day after our wedding we will depart on our honeymoon, and I will personally take care of the organisation. It is tradition in our family that the destination of the honeymoon is a surprise for the bride, that is only revealed at the last minute before departure...So you will understand that I cannot tell you more.

Thank you from the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

In my mailbox on Saturday!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

The wedding of Louise Nicolson and Charles Morshead

all four photos copyright.   Louise Morshead

Louise Nicolson, eldest child of Capt. Mark and the Hon. Katharine Nicolson, married Charles Morshead on May 25th.   The wedding took place at St. Peter's Church in Fraserburgh, Scotland, where Louise's parents also married.  The reception took place at the Nicolson home, Cairnbulg Castle.   (The wedding took place the same weekend that I was in Belgrade.)

Katharine is the heiress presumptive the Saltoun of Abernethy Lordship in the Peerage of Scotland.

The diamond tiara has an aquamarine center, and was loaned to the bride by her maternal grandmother, Lady Saltoun.  Please do not copy, transfer or use these photos.  The copyright belongs to Mrs. Morshead, and she kindly allowed me to use them here. 

The marriage of Prince George Yourievesky

copyright for all three photos: Paul Kulikovsky
Prince George Yourievsky married Silvia Trumpp on August 30, 2013 at the Russian Orthodox Church of the Resurrection in Zurich, Switzerland.   This is Prince George's second marriage.  His first marriage to Katharina Verhagen was dissolved by divorce in 2012 after only nine years of marriage. 

Guests at the wedding included Duke Huno and Duchess Fenita of Oldenburg and Paul Kulikovsky and his wife, Ludmilla.  Paul is a great grandson of the late Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna of Russia.

Prince George is the great grandson of Alexander II and his second wife, Princess Catherine Dolgourky, who was created Princess Yourievska with the rank of serene highness.   Their eldest son, Prince George, married Countess Alexandra von Zarnkekau.  They had one child, Alexander, (1900-1988) who married Ursule Beer de Grüneck.   Prince George, who was born in 1961, is the only child of this marriage.  He is also the last male line Yourievsky descendant.

Thank you to Paul Kulikovsky, who allowed me the opportunity to use several of his photos.  The photos are his copyright.  Do not copy or transmit.  Thanks.

A double wedding for Italy and Belgium

September 12, 1923

Once again, there are reports in Italy of the "probable engagement" of the young Duke of Brabant, heir to the Belgian throne, to Princess Mafalda, second daughter of King Vittorio Emanuele, reports the New York Times.

King Albert and Queen Elisabeth's, visit to Castle Racconigi "has been marked by such cordial intimacy" to renew the reports of a possible marriage.  The Duke of Brabant accompanied his parents to Italy, thus giving further credence to the reports.

The reports also focus on the possibility of a double betrothal as Crown Prince Umberto, is interested in the Belgian king's only daughter, 17-year-old Princess Marie Jose, who spent several years at a Florence boarding school.

A Versailles Wedding for Princess Isabelle

September 12, 1923

Princess Isabelle of Orleans, daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Guise,  was married today in a "strictly private" ceremony at Versailles, reports the New York Times.

The Princess married Count Bruno d'Harcourt.   The bride's witness was former Queen Marie Amelie of Portugal.   The Duchess de la Rochefoucauld was the witness for the groom.

Princess Isabelle was born on November 27, 1900, in Paris.  Her father is the son of the Duke of Chartres, brother of the Count of Paris.  He married his cousin, Princess Isabella, at Twickenham in 1899.

The bride is also the niece of the Duke of Orleans, pretender of the French throne, who is said to be "critically ill" at Inverness Lodge in Roehampton, near London.

Former Queen Amelia is the eldest sister of the Duke of Orleans.   The Duchess de la Rochefoucauld is the former Mattie Elizabeth Mitchell of Portland, Maine.  She married the Duke in 1892.

Count Bruno was born in 1892. The d' Harcourt family is described as a "historic royalist family of Calvados, France."

Queen Eleonore of Bulgaria is dead

Embed from Getty Images 

 September 12, 1917

Queen Eleonore of Bulgaria died at Sofia this afternoon, reports the Associated Press. She had been "ill for some time."   Her husband, King Ferdinand, and her two stepsons, Crown Prince Boris and Prince Cyril, were "summoned to her bedside," and were with her when she died.

She was 57 years old.  The cause of death was not announced.

Queen Eleonore was born Princess Eleonore Caroline Gasparine Luise Reuss, the daughter of Prince Heinrich IV Reuss and his wife, Princess Luise. 

She was the second wife of King Ferdinand.  They married in Coburg on February 28, 1908.   Ferdinand's first wife, Princess Marie Louise of Bourbon-Parma,  died after giving birth to her fourth child in 1899.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Will Juan Carlos abdicate?

An interesting perspective from Vanity Fair about King Juan Carlos and his problems!

It is over for Prince Hussain Aga Khan and his American wife

Princess Hussain Aga Khan, youngest son of the Aga Khan and his first wife, Sarah Crocker Poole, is again on the market.

His marriage to American Kristin White (Princess Khaliyah Aga Khan) is over.  The divorce is final.   Khaliyah recently bought a $2 million apartment in New York City, the funds most likely coming from a generous divorce settlement.

The couple married at the Chateau de Chantilly on September 16, 2007.   They have been separated for several years, and have no children.  

Khaliyah bought the apartment using her maiden name, Kristin White.

Prince Laurent may agree agree to DNA test

Prince Laurent is aware that he might be asked for a DNA sample. If he is asked, he will consider it. He's not against it as a matter of principle. He's very open to the notion. This doesn't reflect on his possible decision."

So states Prince Laurent's lawyer, Pierre Legros to the reports that the prince, younger son of King Albert might give a DNA sample to aid Delphine Boel.

"There are two possibilities. Either he does it willingly, which is not very likely, or he receives a summons," says Legros.

Friday, September 6, 2013

funeral for Princess Anastasia

Embed from Getty Images 

 September 6, 1923

The funeral for the late Princess Anastasia of Greece was held today at the Russian Church in London, reports the Chicago Tribune.   Leading the mourners were her husband, Prince Christopher of Greece and her son, William Leeds and his wife, Princess Xenia of Russia.  Others attending the funeral included Dowager Queen Olga of Greece, and Prince and Princess Nicolas, Prince and Princess George and Prince Andrew of Greece.

King George II was "was not represented" as the Greek government is not recognized by the United Kingdom.

Princess Anastasia's body will be taken to New York by ship for "burial in about a fortnight."

The former Nonnie May Stewart was also the widow the tin plate magnate William B. Leeds.

Grand Duke Alexander does not like the rush

September 6, 1913

Grand Duke Alexander Mikhailovich of Russia, cousin and brother-in-law to Nicholas II, checked into New York's Ritz-Carlton Hotel. after spending some time in Newport.

He was asked by a New York Times what he thought of "our little town."

"You ask me as if I were a stranger," the Grand Duke said.  "I am not. Let me confess that I have been to America before. It was, however, some time ago.  Let me see -- it was about twenty years ago that I visited this country.  At that time I saw a great deal.

"Since then I have kept informed of the march of events in New York and the rest of the country, as I have done with respect to what goes on in other countries.  I have read books, I have read descriptions of what was being done.  I have talked personally with Americans.  So that nothing I have beheld this time has filled me with surprise, and for me there is nothing new beyond the fact that I have actually seen what I have read or heard described.

"Of course, one might comment upon your tall buildings, but then they are only someone talker than the buildings I saw when I was here before.  You have grown, and your buildings have grown up in the air, as trees would.  I may tell you that when I was here before I spent something like six months in the country, and I saw a great deal of it.  Then, as I said, I have kept pace with everything that has been going on, so that there is nothing really new for me.  I like America and New York very much.

"There is one thing in America, however, which I cannot say I wholly enjoy. That is the rush, the hurry that is characteristic of everything and everywhere.  There is plenty of time.  Why not take things a little more quietly? One is always in a hurry here.  Even at Newport, I noticed that the rush was always characteristic.  You rush in business; but why should you rush when you are supposed to be at leisure and you are having your pleasure -- your holiday?  Your men, in this way, do not enjoy your youth when it is theirs.  Each wants to rush through everything, and thus he grows old before his time.  Perhaps they make money, but then what is money unless it can be properly spent, and what is the use of acquiring great wealth if you cannot live to enjoy it?"

While in Newport, the Grand Duke was a guest of Mrs. John Astor.   He is on record for saying that he regards American women as "the most beautiful in the world.

But he noted that American women do not hurry at the same pace as "their fathers and husbands.

"With them it is different. The American women take more time for the better things in life.  They sing well, they dance well. They are beautiful and charming. In brief, they are exquisite.

"You ask me whether I have found changes in New York in twenty years. Such changes as there are only those that have come from growth.  New York is a delightful city, except that I do not like the rush.  I shall say some days here -- perhaps four or five -- and then I shall go back all the way to Europe again.  I have enjoyed my visit very much.  No, I have not received any new impressions that are absolutely new.  I was prepared for what I saw."

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Oh no -- not a second season of Secret Princes

Oh, dear TLC is at it again with a second season of Secret Princes, which will premiere on October 25.

Dearest, darling readers, none of the four eligible princes are "royal."  Or princes.

The four men who will charm their way in Texas have royal connections, but none -- really -- are ROYAL!

 Lord James Rennell is actually Baron Rennell of Rodd, a barony in the peerage of the United Kingdom.  The title was created in 1933 for Sir Rennell Rodd, who served as British Ambassador to Italy.  He died in 1941, by his second, but eldest surviving son, Francis, who died in 1978 without male issue.  The title passed to the 2nd Baron's nephew, John, a rugby player, who succumbed to cancer at the age of 71 in 2006.  He was succeeded by his only son, James Roderick David Tremayne Rodd as the 4th Baron.  He is styled as Lord Rennell, not Lord James, which would mean he is the younger son of a duke or a marquess.  He is not.  He is a peer of the realm. 

Lord Rennell was born in 1978.   The obituary is for his father.

Prince Alexander Mathews is actually a mere commoner, Alexander Francis Mathew, the third of four children of Princess Olga of Russia and Briton Thomas Mathew.  They married in 1975, but the marriage was dissolved by 1989.  Alexander, who uses the name Francis Mathew, is a freelance photographer.  He was a contestant on the Ukraine's edition of The Bachelor.

Alexander is not a prince. His mother, Olga, is the issue of a morganatic marriage between Prince Andrei of Russia and Briton Nadine McDougall.  Prince Andrei was eldest son and second of seven children of Grand Duchess Xenia, daughter of Alexander III, and Grand Duke Alexander Milhailovitch of Russia.  Having maternal Romanov connections does not make Francis Alexander a prince, let alone of Russian prince.  He is a British commoner. Period.

Of his appearance on The Bachelor (Ukraine), Mathew said: "Honestly, the concept is crazy, absolutely crazy."  You have to be of a certain mindset to enter a contest like that, I think it takes courage."

Yup,  Crazy.  Also demeaning, especially when you are pretending to be someone you are not, and you allow an American television network to enable the lie.

Reality TV runs in Alexander's family.  Princess Olga appeared on Australian Princess in 2006, as an advisor to the contestants.  She inherited Provender House in Faversham, Kent, which has been under restoration for some years now.   One can tour the house or rent it for events, such as weddings.

The Hon. Oliver Plunkett, younger son of the late Edward Plunkett, 20th Baron of Dunsany and Maria Alice Villela de Carvalho.  The Barony of Dunsany is an Irish peerage.   Oliver was born in 1985.  His older brother, Randal is the 21st Baron.

There is a family seat, Dunsany Castle, in County Meath, Ireland, but, alas, it was inherited by Oliver's older brother.

Prince Lorenzo d'Medici is the fourth contestant.  I could have sworn the male line Medici family died out some centuries ago.

According to this site, which I would call not reliable),  Lorenzo is 37 years ago, heir to the "famous Medici dynasty."  He allegedly has Polish and Italian "royal" bloodlines ... but bloodlines do not make one a prince.  When I find out more information about Lorenzo, I will be include in this post.

Once again, TLC is offering false advertising.  None of these four men are princes.  One is a British peer, but not a historic title with an estate to match.  Another is the son of a morganatic distaff descendant of Alexander III of Russia.

Lay off the Prince of Wales

A splendid article on the Prince of Wales' position by leading constitutionalist, Vernon Bognador.

Published in The Guardian, of all places ...

Bognador  wrote the definitive book, Monarchy and the Constitution.

Vanity Fair interview with the Mountbatten sisters

The Countess Mountbatten of Burma and Lady Pamela Hicks are profiled in the latest issue of Vanity Fair.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

thank you from Grandpa Charles

In today's mail, this lovely thank you from proud grandpapa Charles and stepgrandmama, Camilla.

Charlotte Casiraghi -- do we expect wedding bells

Difficult to gage  ... wedding bells before or after birth of child. 

Charlotte Casiraghi, elder daughter of Princess Caroline of Monaco, has a bun in the oven, and there are constant rumors that she will soon marry the alleged baby daddy, Gad Elmaleh.

The tabloids have been stating that will marry on September 14 (strange date, as it is the anniversary of Princess Grace's death) or September 18.

I do not think either date is correct because Gad will be performing at the Birchmere in Alexandria, Virginia for three performances:  September 16, 17 & 18.

Tickets are $45.00.  The entire show is French.

Can we say honeymoon in Alexandria?

Delphine drops suit against Philippe

Delphine Boel, who claims she is the natural daughter of King Albert II of the Belgians, has dropped her lawsuit against King Philippe and his sister, Princess Astrid.

The lawyers for Ms Boel, 45, will file "new proceedings" next week against Albert, who abdicated in July, and her legal father, Jacques Boel, in order to establish "her true paternity."

Delphine's mother, Baroness Sybille de Selys Longchamps, was married to Jacques Boel, when she allegedly had an affair with then Prince Albert in the 1960s.

The information was published in 1999 in a book.  In his annual New Year's speech at the end of that year, King Albert acknowledged that his marriage had gone through a crisis 30 years earlier, but did not come out and acknowledge Delphine.

Since then, the Belgian artist has been fighting to prove she is Albert's natural daughter.  Her mother recently spoke to Belgian television, acknowledging that she had an affair with Albert.

King Albert lost his immunity to lawsuits after he abdicated on July 21.

Wedding roundup

I was occupied most of the Labor Day weekend -- the last gasp of summer!  Nationals games on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights.  Ran a few errands on Monday, but spent most of the three days at the pool.  I bought a nice salad from Panera yesterday, had lunch at the pool, relaxed, swam, and floated on my floatie, using up the sunscreen.  No more pool until Memorial Day! 

Catching up on the news.  Three weddings this weekend. 
@ Princely Palais, Monaco

Andrea Casiraghi, eldest son of the Princess Caroline of Monaco, and the late Stefano Casiraghi married his longtime companion, Tatiana Santo Domingo, the mother of his five-month-old son Sacha.   The civil wedding took place, according to press reports, near the marina in Monaco.  The reception was held outside on the Princely Palace grounds.

Although Andrea is technically second in line to the Monaco throne, he is not in the same position as the Duke of Cambridge.  William is a direct heir, a member of the British Royal family.  Andrea is the nephew of the Prince of Monaco, but he is not a member of the princely family.  Caroline is a member of the Princely family but is not the Hereditary Princess (confirmed to me by the Palace.)

@ Princely Palais, Monaco

The Duke of Cambridge needed his grandmother's permission to marry.  Andrea Casiraghi did not need permission to marry.   His position is dependent on the Monaco constitution. 

"In the absence of direct legitimate issue. the succession passes to the brothers and sisters of the reigning prince and their direct legitimate descendants, by order of primogeniture with priority given to males within the same degree of kinship.

If the heir, who would have acceded by virtue of the preceding paragraphs is deceased or renounced the Throne before the succession became open, the succession passes to His own direct legitimate descendants by order of primogeniture with priority given to males within the same degree of kinship."

This will only happen if Princess Charlene does not have children.  If she does have children, the legitimate descendants of Caroline and Stephanie become superfluous.  When Albert's child succeeds as Sovereign Prince (or Princess if Charlene does not give birth to a son), Caroline and Stephanie and their legitimate descendants cease to have rights. 

Princess Caroline's children have been raised as largely private citizens without the burden of actually succeeding.  In the case of Andrea, this may prove to be a foolhardy decision, especially if Charlene does not present the nation with an heir within the next two years.  

Because the Casiraghi children do not carry out official duties, the press office does not typically issue press releases on their comings and goings.  On the other hand, Princess Caroline's office released the details of Andrea's engagement and the birth of Sacha.   The Palace's website provides few details about the Prince's nieces and nephews because they are not Grimaldis, and members of the Princely family.  They are members of Prince Albert's family.

The Princely Palace's office did send out the photos from Andrea's wedding because the wedding took place in Monaco and the Prince and Princess of Monaco were present for the event.

Tatiana wore a white Missoni gown for her civil ceremony, which I thought a bit much.  But Tatiana, who celebrates boho chic, is known for her unconventional style.  The civil wedding is the legal wedding in Monaco, which means Sacha is legitimated, and now eligible to succeed, according to Monaco's constitution.

A religious wedding (most likely a Roman Catholic ceremony) is rumored to be on the calendar for Gstaad in Switzerland.

The weddings would have been very different IF Andrea was acknowledged as the future Sovereign Prince.  There is no doubt that this wedding would have been more traditional.  The civil wedding would have taken place in the Palace, with Tatiana wearing a suit.  This would have been followed by the church wedding ... in Monaco.

Sacha would have been born before the wedding and the birth would have taken place in Monaco, not London, again an acknowledgment of Andrea's position.  

Andrea also would be included in more events in Monaco, taking part in government and business meetings, and hands-on training for a future Sovereign.  This has not happened.   He has no real responsibility apart from being the Prince's eldest nephew.  Andrea is immensely wealthy, and his new bride is the daughter of the late Julio Mario Santo Domingo Braga, whose father, Julio Mario, is the second richest man in Colombia.   Tatiana was born in New York City in November 1983 but was raised in Switzerland.  Her mother, Vera Rechulski, is a Brazilian socialite. 

Tatiana attended the International School of Geneva, and then transferred to a boarding school in Fontainebleau, France, where she first met Andrea. 

She studied the History of Art at the American University of London.

Because Andrea does not have an official position, he is not considered a member of the Princely family.  He does have a nice uncle who allowed him to use the family home to host his reception.

The second (and a grander) wedding on Saturday was the marriage between Prince Rahim Aga Khan, eldest son of the Aga Khan, and his first wife, Princess Salimah, the former Sarah Crocker Poole.

@The Ismalii/Gary Otte

The 42-year-old Prince Rahim married Seattle-born Kendra Spears, 24, a model, who is the "face of Escada."   The Muslim ceremony took place at Bellerive Castle on the shore of Lake Geneva in Switzerland.  (One assumes they also were wed in a civil ceremony.)

This is the first marriage for both Prince Rahim and the former Miss Spears.

The couple was first introduced by another model, Naomi Campbell.  The bride, who converted to Islam before the wedding, wore a gorgeous sari designed by Manav Gangwani.

Kendra, who is now known as Princess Salwah Aga Khan, is a graduate of Portland State University.

It appears that the reports are true about the marriage between Rahim's younger brother, Prince Hussein Aga Khan, and his American wife, Kristin White (who took the name Khaliyah at the time of the marriage) are no longer together, perhaps even divorced by now.  Princess Zahra, the Aga Khan's eldest child, is divorced from her husband, Briton Mark Boyden.

Kristin White was not a model.

I did not see Princess Salimah, the mother of the groom, in the group photo released by the Aga Khan's office.  It was confirmed that Salimah was present at the wedding.  The Begum Aga Khan, the former Gabriele Homey nee Thysssen, nee Prinzessin zu Leingen,  didn't attend the wedding.  She and the Aga Khan have been estranged since 2004.  They were married in 1998, following the newly styled Inaara's divorce from Prince Karl Emich zu Leiningen.   In March 2000, Inaara gave birth to the Aga Khan's son, Prince Aly Muhammed.,26998

[For some reason, there are a lot of searches for Rahim Aga Khan's divorce ... Rahim got married on Saturday.  It is his brother, Hussein, who is divorced.]

The third wedding on Saturday had royal connections. Gustaf Magnuson, the eldest son of Princess Christina and the youngest of King Carl XVI Gustaf's older sister, was married on Saturday to Vicky Andrien. 

The wedding took place in the chapel at Ulrikedalsvägen Castle.  

King Carl XVI Gustaf, Queen Silvia, Crown Princess Victoria, Prince Daniel, and Prince Carl Philip were present at the wedding.  Carl Philip was accompanied by his girlfriend, Sofie Hellquist. 

Princess Madeleine and her husband, Christopher O'Neill are in the United States and were unable to attend the wedding.

Queen Sonja of Norway, who is one of Gustaf's godparents, also attended the wedding.

The groom's younger brothers, Oscar and Victor, served as his best men.

Princess Christina has been married since 1974 to Tord Magnuson. The King's sisters and their descendants do not have dynastic rights to the Swedish throne. 

The wedding was according to the rites of the Swedish Lutheran church.

Princess Alexandra Galitzine, daughter of Prince Piotr Galitzine and Archduchess Maria Anna of Austria, and Belgian Thibault Lancksweert, were scheduled to marry in Houston on September 1.  Their engagement was announced last November.  The engagement ended several months ago.