Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Hermine is a prisoner of the Reds

August 31, 1946

Kaiserin Hermine of Prussia, widow of Wilhelm II is said to be "living under Russian army guard in a three room flat in Frankfurt-on-Oder,  according to a Chicago Tribune report.

Frankfurt-on-Oder is in the Soviet occupation zone.   Hermine, 58, and "thin from the lowest of German food rations" has been quoted as saying that she is "isolated from all mail and personal contacts with her friends."

She is guarded by a Soviet army woman in "constant attendance," as a guard and interpreter.   Requests to see Hermine must be made through the Russian command section, and for those lucky enough to visit Hermine, have had to "pledge not to tell of their experience."

Hermine recently applied for permission to visit her brother-in-law, a prince of Schönaich-Caroloth, who lives in Berlin. The Soviets denied her application and have also not allowed her to notify her family of her whereabouts.

One of her grandsons,  Prince Franz Friedrich of Prussia, who will be two years old in October, is said to be living with her.  He is the younger son of Hermine's youngest child, Princess Henriette of Schönaich-Carolath, who married Prince Karl Franz Josef of Prussia, a grandson of Wilhelm II in 1940.  The couple and their elder son are not with Hermine.

Hermine was the second wife of Wilhelm II.  They were married in Doorn, the Netherlands, in 1922, a year after the death of his first wife, Empress Auguste Viktoria.   After his death in 1941, Hermine returned to her own estate in Silesia, now a part of Poland.  Unlike other family members, she refused to flee "on the approach of the Red Army.

It is understood that other members of her family have made to safety in western Germany.

Another girl for Frederik and Ingrid

Embed from Getty Images

August 30, 1946

Crown Princess Ingrid of Denmark gave birth to her third daughter today in Copenhagen, reports the Associated Press.  Mother and child are said to be in  "good health."

Crown Princess Ingrid is the wife of Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark, the heir apparent to the throne.

The unnamed princess has two older sisters,  Princess Margrethe, 5, and 2-year old, Princess Benedikte.   Women cannot succeed to the throne in Denmark.  Crown Prince Frederik's younger brother, Prince Knud, is second in line. He and his wife, Princess Caroline Mathilde, have one daughter, Princess Elisabeth, 11, and two sons, Prince Ingolf, 6, and three-year-old Prince Christian.

Prince Max's remains are found

August 30, 1916

The remains of Prince Maximilian of Hesse, nephew of Kaiser Wilhelm II, at Hazebrouck, in northeaster France, have been found, reports the Washington Post.  The discovery "definitely establishes his death."

Prince Maximilian was the second of six sons of Prince Friedrich Karl of Hesse and his wife, Princess Margarete of Prussia.  He was one week short of his 20th birthday, when he was killed in action in France on October 13, 1914.

Monday, August 29, 2016

More new additions

Princess Maria Pia and Prince Alexander of Yugoslavia with their twin sons, Princes Dimitri and Michael

Prince Alexander of Yugoslavia

Princess Frederika of Hannover, wearing an ermine cloak

Three postcards for my collection. The first two are of Prince Alexander of Yugoslavia (the first with his first wife, Princess Maria Pia, and their twin sons), and the third is of Princess Friederike of Hannover - also known as Princess Frederica of Hanover (and a British princess).  The elder daughter of King Georg V of Hannover (born HRH Prince George of Cumberland, a first cousin of Queen Victoria).

I love finding cards of Frederica.  I continue to search for postcards of Princess Augusta of Cambridge (Grand Duchess of Mecklenburg-Strelitz) and Princess Eualie (Ila) of Thurn und Taxis (especially her engagements and wedding).

An exclusive Interview with Crown Prince Alexander

Exclusive interview with His Royal Highness for Royal Newspapers of Serbia

Copyright HRH Crown Prince Alexander

What is the personal significance of returning to Serbia, the land of your ancestors?

It is of great significance and very emotional. I always wanted to come home, but I was cruelly denied this human right until 2001. This is what was so painful for my father he was torn from his home. My wife reminds me that when we came to live in the Royal Palace fifteen years ago I would say “do you think my father sat here” and “I am finally home”. I know how many of our people felt the pain being torn away from the homeland.

What are your impressions about Serbia?

Serbia is a beautiful country with very warm people. I have had the chance to travel all over Serbia and meet so many wonderful people. Serbia is full of history, talent, diversity and charm. The world should know that we are good people and caring people.

YRH father, King Peter II, had to leave the country as young boy. How did he handle in that situation?

My father was not yet eighteen years old when his was torn from the homeland. It was a terrible shock for him and it had an appalling effect on him for the rest of his life. He was very homesick and wanted to come back to his home. He was surrounded by intrigue, lies and mystery that had a negative effect on his life. In short, he had a same destiny as a country he represented and as thousands of people who shared the same values. At least now he is back home in the family mausoleum at Oplenac with his parents, brothers and ancestors. I will always be grateful to our government of having made this possible three years ago.

Can YRH explain to our readers, what kind of life you had lived with the knowledge that you are were not welcome in your country?

I did as best as I could and got on with my life and work, but I was always wondering and dreaming about our homeland. I witnessed the terrible pain my father was going through and felt for him. My grandmother Queen Maria and my uncles Prince Tomislav and Prince Andrej were also going through a lot of pain and emotions. It was not only my family suffering from homesickness, but many families.

Can Your Royal Highness tell, what is the future of Serbia, from your point of view and experience?

We are already a democratic country. We have been trying hard to recover from dictatorships, sanctions, aggression and a bad economic time. It is also not easy during these times especially with the horror of terrorism. I know our government has tried hard to continue with reform, economic recovery and especially with the creation of jobs and investment. I support our Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic position on entering the European Union (EU). We need the huge EU market and investments, but it is not easy nowadays in view of Brexit and the concerns about a federal Europe and Brussels. We need to have a voice in Europe and take part in the decision making. Most of our neighbors are members of the EU. We need good relations with our neighbors. We need unity and respect for each other. Serbia has a great future.

Are you expecting that National Assembly of Republic of Serbia vote for law that will enable returning of property to your family?

The National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia passed the Law on Restitution of Confiscated Property and on Compensation ("Official Gazette of RS" No. 72/2011) that entered into force on 6 October 2011. The law served as the basis for the establishment of the Restitution Agency. We as a united family are working hard on restitution.

In your opinion, what are the chances for Your Royal Highness to become a King of Serbia?

This depends on the will of the people.

When you come to Serbia, Your Royal Highness  and your family show us that you can and want to help Serbian people. Can you tell us something about humanitarian activities?

I am particularly proud of my wife Princess Katherine and the work of her foundations. In 1993 she founded Lifeline Humanitarian Organization with offices in the United States (Chicago and New York), Canada (Toronto), United Kingdom (London) and Greece (Athens). At the beginning of August 2001, the Foundation of Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Katherine was established in Belgrade. Humanitarian help has been coming to Serbia since 1993. Millions of Euros and Dollars of help has flowed into Serbia that consist of specialized medical equipment, medicine, ambulances, hospital cars etc. etc. In addition, the training of doctors abroad in the United States and medical conferences in Serbia. Aid is distributed regardless of religion or ethnic origin.

My foundation for education has provided scholarships, career centers and much more.

Patriarch Irinej and the Serbian Orthodox Church support the idea of constitutional monarchy, and also there aremore and more people every day who believe that monarchy is the only way for bringing Serbia back to list of strong an stabile states. Are you ready to take responsibility and lead the country?

Our Patriarch has been wonderful. The principle of constitutional monarchy is that the King reigns (in Serbian there is no exact word for "reigns" to depict the difference between reigns and rules, so I am much more in favor of the word "symbolizes") and the government rules. The king provides (I would rather say that king symbolizes those qualities, as he hardly can provide them directly) unity, stability and continuity. The country is ruled by the prime minster and his cabinet. I am ready providing the people are.

Does government in Serbia want to give financial supportfor maintenance of Royal Palaces?

The Royal Compound is of great historical importance and this is understood by the government. There is much work to be done to preserve the compound exactly as it was done with Narodna Skupstina, conduct repairs and I am certain that a solution will be found shortly. The compound is of historical importance before Second World War and afterwards. It is open to the public since 2001 for tours and thousands have enjoyed their visit.

Your visits to Royal Palaces all over the Europe give us hope that the governments of those countries will support Serbian politic of progress. Do you think that this is realistic expectation?

There is no doubt that the friendship and relationship we have with other Royal Families is of great benefit to Serbia. We also have good relations with many republics. It was very positive when Prince Charles came to Serbia for a state visit. In addition, the King of Sweden who has come twice to Serbia.

What is the importance of Crown Council? What kind of help the members of Crown Council give you?

The Crown Council has always given my advice and recommendations. I value their council.

What are plans and ambitions of your sons? Do they have any plans in case Your Royal Highness become a King of Serbia?

Peter, Philip and Alexander are earning their living and have always been of great help and support with our humanitarian activities. They have many friends and will always be with us. They are proud of their heritage.

Your great grandmother Princess Persida Karadjordjevic made a mark on the renewal of Serbia as mother of ten, and one of her children was King Peter I the Liberator. She was also renovator and builder of Monasteries and temples. Do you believe it would be good that we have such tradition today? For example, renovation of the Monastery Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple in Toplica, where mother of all Orthodox Serbs, mother of St. Sava, wife of Nemanja, St. Anastasija, Byzantine Princess from Greece have lived in Kursumlija. Would you support it as a future King of Serbia, and continue tradition of Princess Persida Karadjordjevic, Your great grandmother?

My wife and I made contributions to Hram Svetog Sava, as it symbolizes church of all Serbian churches. I also flew to Hilandar monastery right after the horrible fire in (2003 or 2004) and I think that your initiative is very noble as our monasteries are at the same time symbols of our presence and perseverance, our culture and identity and of course, of our religion.

The last time Queen Victoria's Coronet was worn -- so what's the story

the late Lord Harewood sent this to me

The Hon. Mark Lascelles, the only son of the late 7th Earl of Harewood and his second wife, Patricia, married Andrea Julie Kershaw at All Saints Church, Harewood, on August 8, 1992. (They divorced in 2005. )
Andrea wore Queen Victoria's wedding coronet, which George V had given to Princess Mary when she married  Lord Lascelles in 1922.  

 ord Harewood's second wife, Patricia. wore the tiara after she married Lord Harewood in 1967, three years after the birth of Mark.

Mark's former wife, Andrea, now teaches Yoga at the Health Club and Spa in Harrogate.

The coronet was designed by Prince Albert as a wedding present for Queen Victoria.  They were married in February 1840.    The 4.5" wide coronet was "mounted with 11 sapphires," all set in gold, and the diamonds are set in silver.  The day before the wedding, Prince Albert gave his bride-to-be a matching sapphire and diamond brooch, which Queen Elizabeth II wore on occasion.

Queen Victoria wore the coronet and the brooch for her portrait by Franz Xaver Winterhalter in 1847.   Many of the stones used in the coronet were given to Victoria by her uncle, William IV, whom she succeeded in June 1837.

The coronet (and the brooch) are considered personal, and not Crown Jewels.  Neither Queen Alexandra nor Queen Mary wore the sapphire tiara.    In February 1922, George V, son of Edward VII and grandson of Queen Victoria, gave the coronet and a matching sapphire parure to his only daughter, Princess Mary, when she married Viscount Lascelles, who succeeded to his father as the 6th  Earl of Harewood in 1929.   Three years later, Mary was created Princess Royal.  The couple had two sons, George and Gerald.

Lord Harewood died in 1947, and he was succeeded by his eldest son, George, as the 7th Earl.

The Princess Royal wore the tiara on numerous occasions.  She died in 1965, and her jewels were inherited by her elder son, who sold some of her jewels, including a fringe tiara after her death. At the time of Mary's death, Lord Harewood was living apart from his wife, Marion (nee Stein).  They had three sons: David. James and Jeremy.     Although it was not known publicly at the time, Lord Harewood was the father of a fourth son, Mark, born in June 1964.   The mother of his youngest son was an Australian violinist (and model), Patricia Tuckwell.

Lady Harewood eventually agreed to a divorce in 1967, and shortly afterward,  Lord Harewood married Patricia Tuckwell in a civil ceremony in Connecticut.  As a divorced person, Lord Harewood could not marry in the Church of England.  He was also bound by the Royal Marriages Act (and both marriages were approved by Queen Elizabeth II), which meant that he also could not marry in a civil ceremony in England or Wales.

The new countess was photographed wearing the coronet at several events.   In 1997, Lord and Lady Harewood loaned the tiara to an exhibit on tiaras, which was sponsored by Wartski, a London jeweler, with Royal Appointments from the Queen and the Prince of Wales.  He made the wedding rings from Welsh gold nuggets for the Prince of Wales and the Duke of Cambridge for their marriages to Camilla Parker-Bowles and Catherine Middleton, respectively.

The present Managing Director, Geoffrey Munn, is the great-grandson of Morris Wartski, who founded the firm in Bangor, Wales, in 1865.   Munn is a resident expert on the British television program, Antique Roadshow.

The coronet has been sold to a foreign buyer, and this yet-to-completed sale became news last week because the UK Culture Minister, Matt Hancock. has imposed a temporary ban on the sale of the coronet, due to the historical significance of the piece.  The temporary ban followed a recommendation "by reviewing committee on the export of works of art and objects of cultural interest."  This committee is administered by the UK's Art Council.

Committee member Philippa Granville told the press that the coronet's "departure would be a great loss, given its beauty, its associations and history."

A final decision for the approval of the export license has been deferred until December 27th, although the delay could be moved to June 2017, if financial resources come through to keep the coronet in the United Kingdom.

So how did the coronet get to this temporary ban?    As mentioned earlier,  the coronet was loaned to Warski for an exhibition in 1997.  Geoffrey Munn had contacted Lord and Lady Harewood to inquire about what they might have to offer for the exhibition.   Munn's interest was piqued when Lady Harewood told him about Victoria's wedding coronet.  Five years later, the tiara was again loaned for an exhibit at the Victoria and Albert Museum.

The Earl of Harewood died in 2011 and was succeeded by his eldest son, David. now the 8th Earl of Harewood.   It seems probable that the coronet was sold after the late Earl's death (inheritance tax), but it was not a public sale (Christie's, Sotheby's).   A year after the earl's death,  the coronet was loaned anonymously to Wartski for another exhibit.  The owner lived in Highgate, London.   Highgate is one of London's priciest areas to live.



The coronet has been displayed at several events since 2011, in  London and, most recently in  New York in 2014.  Munn was photographed with the tiara at the World Jewish Relief fundraising event in January 2012, where he spoke about the history of the coronet.  It was at this event that the Highgate owner was first mentioned.

I believe Geoffrey Munn acquired the coronet from present Lord Harewood.   My thoughts about the provenance have been largely backed up by Richard Brooke's article in yesterday's Sunday Times.  Brookes notes that the coronet "appears to have been bought by a dealer, possibly Geoffrey Munn."

Since 2012, the coronet has been displayed at shows connected to Wartski.  It will cost £5 million to keep the coronet in the United Kingdom, and I expect the money will be raised.

I sincerely doubt that Lord Harewood pocked £5 million, and may not benefit from a further sale.  It does seem a bit perplexing that Wartski would seek a foreign buyer for Victoria's coronet, especially with the firm's two royal appointments.  We also do not know the backstory:  was it not possible for the new Lord Harewood to donate the coronet to the nation in lieu of taxes or did he contact his father's first cousin, Queen Elizabeth II, to see if she would provide financial assistance (perhaps purchase the coronet for the Royal Collection.)

The alleged foreign buyer has not been named as well.  Is it possible that Wartski is using this method - a foreign buyer needs an export license -- to keep the coronet in the United Kingdom.  It would be a coup for the firm.  A few details about the story are missing, and I hope a few good British reporters will dig further, and find out the who, what, how, where, and why of this sale/

Neither Munn nor Lord Harewood responded to the Sunday Times' request for information.

Matt Hancock is correct when he said: “Queen Victoria’s coronet is stunning and is one of the most iconic jewels from a pivotal period in our history as well as symbolising one of our nation’s most famous love stories.”


Update - 2019  https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2019/feb/05/coronet-designed-albert-victoria-star-gallery-queen-jewellery

If you liked this article

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Beaumont-Fitzpatrick wedding

Congratulations to  George and Katy (nee Fitzpatrick) Beaumont, who were married on August 26th at the Church of St. Mary of the Purification at Blidworth, Mansfield, in Nottinghamshire.

George Wentworth Beaumont is the eldest son and second child of Katharine Abel Smith and her former husband, the Hon. Hubert Wentworth Beaumont.  Katharine Hannah Fiona Fitzgerald is the daughter of Gerard Martin Fitzpatrick and Clare Madeline Russell.  She was born on November 18, 1986 at the Countess of Chester Hospital at Chester.

Katy's father is the head teacher at St's Mary's College in  Hull.

The reception was held at Blidforth Dale, the home of George's grandmother, Marcia Abel Smith,  his mother, Kate Abel Smith, and his older sister, Amelia and her husband, Simon Murray and their children.

George is a great-great grandson of the late HRH Princess Alice, Countess of Athlone, a granddaughter of Queen Victoria.   Princess Alice - Lady May Cambridge -Richard Abel Smith - Kate Abel Smith - George Beaumont.

Monday, August 22, 2016

New to my collection

Two new cards for my collection.   Both are German postcards.   The first card is from the wedding of Princess Frederika of Hannover and Prince Paul of Greece.

The latter card is one of the official engagement photographs. I have another card from this photo session.

Mail call

This arrived last Thursday, but just catching up to the pile on the desk ... blame it on the Olympics

Crown Prince Alexander awards Royal Orders to Royal Family members

On the occasion of the anniversary of the death of our beloved ancestor, His Majesty King Peter I of blessed memory, I have decided to apply the Article 3 of the Act about the Order of the Star of Karageorge, bestowing the Grand Cross of the Star of Karageorge upon all the sons of my dear uncles Prince Tomislav and Prince Andrej – HRH Prince Nicholas, HRH Prince Djordje, (George) HRH Prince Mihailo (Michael), HRH Prince Vladimir and HRH Prince Dimitri, as well as upon all sons of my dear recently departed cousin Prince Alexander (Pavlov) – HRH Prince Dimitri, HRH Prince Michael, HRH Prince Serge and HRH Prince Dushan.

On the same occasion, I have decided to bestow the Grand Cross of the Order of Saint Sava to the daughters of my dear uncles – HRH Princess Katerina (Lady de Silva), HRH Princess Maria Tatiana (Mrs. Thune-Larsen) and HRH Princess Lavinia (Mrs. Prichard-Levy), as well as HRH Princess Helene, the daughter of my dear recently departed cousin Prince Alexander (Pavlov).
Issued at the Royal Palace, Belgrade, 16 August 2016

 On the occasion of the anniversary of the death of our beloved ancestor, His Majesty King Peter I of blessed memory, I have decided to bestow the Grand Cross of the Royal Order of the White Eagle to my dear relatives – Sir Desmond de Silva, QC, Mr Gregory Thune-Larsen and Mr Austin Prichard-Levy.

Issued at the Royal Palace, Belgrade, 22 August 2016

Friday, August 19, 2016

The death of Duke of Medinaceli

Copyright Casa Ducale de Medinaceli

Only three years after succeeding his grandmother, Victoria Eugenia Fernandez de Cordoba, 18th Duchess of Medinaceli, who died on August 18, 2013,  HSH Prince Marco zu Hohenlohe-Langenburg, 19th Duke of Medinaceli, died on August 19, 2016, at the Virgen de los Reyes in Seville.   The Duke, who had been ill for some time, was admitted to the hospital several days ago.   He was born at Madrid on March 8, 1962, the eldest child of Prince Max Emanuel of Hohenlohe-Langenburg and  Doña Ana de Medina y Fernandez de Cordoba, 9th Countess of Ofalia and 13th Marquesa de Navahermosa, eldest child of the late Duchess of Mendinaceli.

Doña Ana died in 2012.

The Duke was 54 years old.  He was confirmed as Duke of Medinaceli in September 2014.  He had also applied for his grandmother's other titles, but these were not approved as there is a dispute with his uncle, the Duke of Segorbe.

In 1996,  Marco married German-born Sandra Schmidt-Polex.  They had two children, Princess Victoria (1997) and Prince Alexander (1999).  The couple was divorced in 2004.  Although Victoria and Alexander were born in Malaga, Spain, they moved to Germany with their mother after the divorce.

The late duke is survived by his two children, his brother, Prince Pablo, and his sister, Princess Flavia.

The heir to the ducal title is 19-year-old Princess Victoria, Countess of Ofalia.   She now lives in Madrid and is a student at the IB Business School.  She enjoys horseback riding and is fluent in Spanish, German, and English.


Liechtenstein's National Day

One of my Twitter friends,  Arjan Brouwer, traveled from his home in the Netherlands to Vaduz, Liechtenstein, for that country's National Day on August 15.  The Staatfeiertag is attended by members of the Princely Family including the Prince and Princess of Liechtenstein, the Hereditary Prince and Princess and other members of the family.

Arjan is the copyright holder.  Please do not reproduce without his permission.  You can follow him on Twitter @houseoflemon

Hereditary Princess Sophie with Arjan

Princess Margaretha (wife of Prince Nikolaus)

Prince Nikolaus

Hereditary Prince Alois

Prince Constantin

Prince Hans Adam

Princess Marie Caroline and one of her brothers 

Princess Marie, the wife of Prince Constantin

The Hereditary Prince and Princess with two of their sons

The Prince and Princess

Hereditary Prince Alois

Schloss Vaduz