Thursday, August 31, 2017

It is a boy

@Marlene A Eilers Koenig

UPDATE:   It is a boy.  A little brother for Alexander.

The Office of The Marshal of the Realm is delighted to announce that HRH Princess Sofia gave birth to a healthy child Thursday the 31 August 2017 at 11.24am at Danderyd Hospital.
Both mother and child are in good health.  The newborn prince weighed 7.5lbs and is 19 inches tall.

Svante Lindqvist
Marshal of the Realm

Prince Carl Philip told reporters that the new prince is "super sweet," and they are "super happy, glad and excited."  Sofia and baby are doing fine.  Alexander has not met his little brother, but will shortly.   The rest of the royal family have been sent a photo of the new baby.

The name and the ducal title will be announced by the King at a Cabinet meeting on Monday.  The Te Deum, a service to give thanks for the birth of a healthy child, will also be held on Monday.

Sofia was expected to give birth in mid-September.

My choice for a name:  Prince Eugen.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Baby News: a baby for Ernst August and Ekaterina

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Update:  A spokesman for the Hereditary Prince and Princess has told the local Hannover newspaper, HAZ,  that the newlyweds will not "comment on a private matter."

Several German news organizations are reporting that the Hereditary Princess of Hanover is expecting a baby in March.

Prince Ernst August married Russian-born fashion designer Ekaterina Malysheva in July.

If their first born is a son, I wonder why they will name him.  Probably Ernst August, but that does not mean they will stick with tradition .... because the family has broken with tradition on two occasions.

Prince Ernest Augustus, Duke of Cumberland and Teviotdale, succeeded his brother, William IV, as King of Hanover, in 1837.  (William's niece, Victoria, inherited the United Kingdom.)    The Duke was known in Hanover as King Ernst August.   His only son, Prince George Frederick Alexander Charles Ernest Augustus, was born on May 27, 1819 in Berlin, three days after the birth of Princess Alexandrina Victoria of Kent, the future Queen Victoria.

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George succeed his father in 1851.   His only son was named Ernst August, who married Princess Thyra of Denmark, the youngest sister of the Princess of Wales.  They had three sons, Georg Wilhelm, Christian and Ernst August.  Georg Wilhelm was the heir.   Christian died at age 16 from peritonitis in 1901.  The youngest brother, Ernst August, became the spare.   In 1912,  Prince Georg Wilhelm was killed in a car accident en route to his uncle, King Frederik VIII's funeral.
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 The third son was now the heir.   In 1913, he married Princess Victoria Luise of Prussia.   Their eldest son was named Ernst August,  and his eldest son - the present head of the family is named Ernst August and his recently married heir (and soon-to-be dad) is named Ernst August.

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At least, one hopes a girl will not be named Ernestine Auguste.

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Sunday, August 27, 2017

Victoria's Crown has been saved

William Bollinger, an Irish-American "hedge fund tycoon," has been identified as the purchaser of Queen Victoria's coronet.  He purchased the "tiny tiara," for the Victoria & Albert Museum, reports the Sunday Times.

The battle to keep the crown in the United Kingdom has taken more than a year since the original report of the sale to a foreign buyer (and the government refusing to issue an export license.)

The tiara will not go on display until January 2019, the bicentenary of Victoria's birth, according the newspaper.

Victoria was born May 24, 1819 at Kensington Palace.

Mr. Bollinger and his wife, Judith, have already made a large donation to the musem for a jewelery gallery, which will bear their name.

My earlier report includes information on the provenance of the coronet.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Duke of Kent killed in flying boat accident

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 August 25, 1942

The Duke of Kent, the youngest brother of King George VI, was killed today "in the service of his country," reports the New York Times.  He was 39 years old.

He was a "passenger aboard a Sunderland flying boat which crashed in Scotland."  All on board were killed.   The Duke served as an Air Commodore "on the staff of the Inspector General of the Royal Air Force."

The flying boat was bound for Iceland.

The Duke was the second youngest son of the late King George V and Queen Mary.  He is the first member of the royal family "to be killed on active service in this war."

He became a father for the third time on July 4, when his wife, Princess Marina, gave birth to a son.   The infant prince was baptized on August 4 by the Archbishop of Canterbury, with President Franklin D. Roosevelt as one of the eight godparents.

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The news of the Duke's death was released shortly before midnight.  "The Air Ministry deeply regrets that Air Commodore His Royal Highness the Duke of Kent was killed on active service this afternoon when a Sunderland boat crashed in North Scotland.  His Royal Highness, who was attached to the Inspector General of the Royal Air Force, was proceeding to Iceland on duty.  All the crew of the flying boat also lost their lives."

Since the "war broke out", the Duke of Kent "filled almost every minute of his time with a variety of official duties."   At times he had been "under fire" and "often he had been missed by bombs by narrow margins."

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 Due to wartime restrictions "the movements of members of the royal family cannot be printed without special permission."  It is impossible at this time to know where King George VI and Queen Elizabeth were when they received the "grim news."

Prince George Edward Alexander Edmund was born on December 20, 1902, at York Cottage, Sandringham,  the fifth of six children of the late King George VI and Queen Mary.  A younger brother, Prince John, died in January 1919.    On November 29, 1934, he married Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark.  Shortly before the wedding, Prince George was created Duke of Kent, Earl of St. Andrews and Baron Downpatrick.

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Theirs was a "successful marriage" and the couple made an "extremely attractive couple" wherever they went.

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 The births of their three children helped "strengthen their grip on the affection of the Empire."

The Duke of Kent's elder son, Prince Edward George Nicholas Paul Patrick, who was born on October 9, 1935, succeeds to his father's peerages.    The couple's two other children, are Princess Alexandra Helen Elizabeth Olga Christabel, born on Christmas Day in 1936, just a few weeks after the abdication of Edward VIII.

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His youngest son, Prince Michael George Charles Franklin was born on July 4th.

The Duke of Kent is survived by his wife and three children, his mother, Queen Mary,  and his brothers,  King George VI, the Duke of Gloucester, currently serving in the British Army, and the Duke of Windsor, who is the Governor-General of the Bahamas, and his sister, Princess Mary, the Princess Royal.

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Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Who are the Hottest Young Royal & Aristos?

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At least according to Paper Magazine.   A must read.    Seriously.

HH Duke Friedrich August of Oldenburg (1936-2017)

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HH Duke Friedrich August of Oldenburg died on July 9, 2017 at Merano, Italy.  He was 81 years old.

 The sixth of nine children of  Hereditary Grand Duke Nikolaus of Oldenburg and Princess Helene of Waldeck und Pyrmont,  Duke Friedrich August Wilhelm Christian Ernst was born at Rastede on January 11, 1936.    He was a grandson of the last reigning Grand Duke of Oldenburg, Friedrich August, who renounced the throne on November 11, 1918.  The last Grand Duke died in 1931.

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He was married twice.  His first wife was HRH Princess Marie Cecile of Prussia, daughter of HI & RH Prince Louis Ferdinand of Prussia and HIH Grand Duchess Kira of Prussia.   They married in 1965 and were divorced in 1989.   Three years later in February 1991, Friedrich August married Countess Donata of Castell-Rüdenhausen, the widow of Prince Louis Ferdinand of Prussia, the brother of Friedrich August's first wife.    Duchess Donata died in September 2015.

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Duke Friedrich August and his family lived for many years at Sievershagen in Manhagen.  He is survived by his three children, Duke Paul, Duchess Rixa and Duchess Bibiane,  and eight grandchildren, Duke Kirill, Duke Carlos, Duke Paul-Maria, Duchess Maria-Assunta, Duke Louis Ferdinand and Xenia, Rixa and Max-Wladimir Dorner and three of his siblings, Duchess Altburg and Dukes Huno and Johann.

The funeral took place at St. Ulrich's Church in Rastede.

No death announcements have been published in the Oldenburg area newspapers or in Meran.   The death was confirmed to me by a family member.

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Monday, August 21, 2017

Meghan Markle's religion or no religion

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Speculation continues to grow about an engagement between Prince Harry of Wales, and American actress Meghan Markle.

The Sunday Express' Camilla Tominey broke the story about the then burgeoning romance in October 2016.    Since that time, there have been a number of stories about Miss Markle's religion.   Is she Jewish or Catholic or ...fill in the blank.

For some months, Meghan's older half sister, Samantha, followed me on Twitter, and we engaged in several conversations.  Samantha is not a fan of Meghan, and has made rather rude comments about her.

In May, Samantha and I talked about Meghan's religion.  This conversation came about after one of the tabloids published photos from Meghan's wedding to producer Trevor Engelson.  They starting dating in 2004 and became engaged six year later.   Their wedding took place on September 10, 2011 at the Jamaica Inn in Ocho Rios, Jamaica.  They separated only two years later, and were divorced in 2013, citing “irreconcilable differences”.

Engelson is Jewish, and there is speculation that their wedding was Jewish ceremony.  This is based on one photo showing the couple taking part in the Hora (chair dance), which normally takes place at the start of the reception.

I am not convinced that Meghan and Trevor had a Jewish wedding as one guest noted that  "the ceremony was over very quickly, in about 15 minutes."

Jewish wedding ceremonies take longer than 15 minutes, at least the ones that I have attended.

I believe that the couple were married in a civil ceremony, but included the Hora at the reception.

UPDATE:  It appears that Meghan Markle's first marriage was a civil ceremony, perhaps in Los Angeles on August 16, 2011.  This information can be found in Meghan's divorce application.  The Jamaica event was probably a wedding celebration party.

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This brings me back to Miss Markle's religion and the conversation that I had in May with her half-sister.

Samantha Markle told me that their father, Thomas Markle, is not Jewish, but Episcopalian.  She does not believe that Meghan's mother, Doria, is Roman Catholic. She does not know if Doria is a member of any church.

Meghan's parents. Thomas Wayne Markle and Doria Loyce Ragland, married on December 23, 1979 at the Self-Realization Fellowship Temple in Los Angeles.

 Meghan attended at Roman Catholic High School, but Roman Catholic schools are filled with non-Roman Catholic Christians - and even non-Christians.  I met a Lutheran pastor here in northern Virginia who chose to send his children to a local Catholic high school as the school has a very good reputation.    Prince Joachim and Princess Marie of Denmark's daughter, Princess Athena, attends a Catholic school (the family is Lutheran).  The school's website states that more non-Catholics attend the school than Roman Catholics.

So what is Meghan's religion?  It is possible that she was not raised in any religion.   I asked Samantha if Meghan had been baptized in any church.   Samantha said no.

Now, of course, Samantha rarely has a kind word to say about Meghan.  But she may be right about her younger half-sister when it comes to religion.

There are millions of unchurched and unbaptized Americans.  The number grows with every year, as more Americans turn away from organized religion.  One can be a person of faith (in something) without being an official member of a faith community.  I suspect Meghan Markle falls into this community.

Miss Markle has never said that she is Jewish although others have speculated.   Profiles have mentioned the Roman Catholic High School, but little else.

Her publicist, Chantal Artur, told a Jewish publication: "Just to clarify ... she's not Jewish."

The question of Meghan's religion will be answered if and when she becomes engaged to Prince Harry.   If she has never been baptized, one expects that she will have meetings with the Archbishop of Canterbury, and then there will the announcement of a private baptism, followed by a private confirmation, both before the wedding.  For all we know, she may already be learning about the Church of England ... but again, there will be no real clarification until there is an announcement.

  (Catherine Middleton was confirmed in the Church of England shortly before her wedding to Prince William, as she had not been confirmed as a teenager.)

On this matter of religion,  I have few doubts about Samantha's responses.  She would know if Thomas Markle was Jewish because he is her father.  She had also mentioned that one family member -- an uncle, I think, is a Greek Orthodox priest.  It is possible that she speculated about Meghan not being baptized after I asked the question,  but, then again, she was closer to her family when Meghan was a child than she is now.

Yes, Samantha holds a few grudges against Meghan, but those grudges were not on display when I asked my questions.

Nicholas de Roumanie Medforth-Mills is engaged.

@ Nicholas de Roumanie Medforth-Mills
I woke up this morning to the news that Nicholas de Roumanie Medforth-Mills. son of Princess Helen of Romania and the late Robin Medforth-Mills, is engaged to his longtime girlfriend, Alina-Maria Binder.

Nicholas popped the question in Cornwall on July 29.  The official announcement was made earlier today.   I chatted with Nicholas earlier today - and, suffice to say, he is over the moon.

Nicholas first met Alina in 2014.  Their first public appearance took place last year when they were guests at the baptism and reception that followed for Prince Joseph of Orléans, the son of the Duke and Duchess of Vendome.    The baptism took place in Dreux.

The official release from the Duke of Vendome's office stated that Nicholas was accompanied by his girlfriend.   Nicholas, however, was not ready to tell the world about his growing love for Alina-Maria.

Miss Binder was born on January 26, 1988 in Constanta, Romania.  She is the daughter of Heinz Binder and Rodica Iancu.

Miss Binder met then Prince Nicholas of Romania in 2015 after she had made a donation to Curtea Veche Association, which was sponsoring a charity Triathlon ((raising money for literacy).  Nicholas took part in this Triathlon.

It was in August 2015 that Nicholas' grandfather, King Michael stripped his grandson of his royal title and his right of succession.

 She studied at the the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich, which a degree in communications.   After receiving her bachelor's degree, she returned to Bucharest where she studied economics and international affairs at the Academy of Economic Studies and at the National University of Political Studies and Public Administration (SNSPA). Both are in Bucharest.  Miss Binder received a master's degree from the latter institution.

King Michael and Crown Princess Margarita have sent their congratulations to Nicholas and Alina-Maria.

The King wishes his grandson "happiness and peace" and the power to "make the right decisions."  However, the King reiterated that his decision to remove Nicholas' title, the style of Royal Highness and his removal from the succession" will remain unchanged.

The couple became engaged on the  second anniversary of their first meeting.  The wedding will take place in summer of 2018.

Thank you, Nicholas, for allowing me to use several of the  engagement photos.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Remembering Prince Eugen of Sweden (1865-1947)

All images are from the Marlene A. Eilers Koenig collection

Prince Eugen of Sweden dead at 82

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 August 17, 1947

Prince Eugen of Sweden died today at his villa, Waldermarsudde, of a heart attack, report the New York Times.  He was 82.   He was "taken seriously ill" with a heart ailment on his birthday on August 1.

Sweden is in mourning for the "popular prince,  who was regarded as "one of the country's most foremost painters."  He also owned one of the "best collections of paintings" in Sweden.

Prince Eugen Napoleon Nicolaus, Duke of Närke, was the fourth son of King Oscar II and Queen Sophia, and the youngest brother of King Gustaf V.

His artistic talents were discovered early in life, although his "boyhood dream of an artist's career" was not encouraged by the "conservative circles" at the Swedish court.    He completed his education at Uppsala University, and then entered the officers' training school, where in "due course" he received a commission in the army.

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 Although Prince Eugen carried out his military duties with "commendable earnestness," he remained determined to "follow his artistic inclination."

Thanks to the support of his mother, Queen Sophia,  he was able to achieve his dream.  In the 1880s, he moved to Paris, joining the Bonnat & Gervex ateliers, where he and other young Scandinavians honed their talent to give "new impetus to the rather stagnant art" in their countries.

Prince Eugen became a "respected member of a brilliant group" of young artists who "inaugurated a new era in Swedish painting in the 1880s and 1890s.

He specialized in landscapes and never sold his work, but donated a large number of paintings to National Gallery of Sweden and other museums.  Prince Eugen would also donate his work to be auctioned for charity.

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For many years, he lived at Waldemarsudde, outside Stockholm, where he built a home.   The villa housed his private art collection, one of the "finest" in Scandinavia.

Prince Eugen was regarded as "one of the cultural leaders of modern Sweden," and "widely admired for his democratic ideals.

Prince Eugen never married.  His home is expected to become a public museum.

[I visited Waldemarsudde in July.  ]

Princess Ileana becomes of age

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 August 17, 1927

Princess Ileana of Romania was "emancipated" earlier today by decree, reports the Associated Press.

The announcement was signed by her mother, Queen Marie, and all three members of the Regency Council, in the name of the young King Michael.

This decree is "in accordance with Romanian law" that members of the Royal Family, when reaching their 18th birthday, become "of age."

This decree will enable Princess Ileana to "receive and manage" her portion of the estate left to her by her late father, King Ferdinand.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Will Elizabeth have to obey Philip?

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 August 11, 1947

The British Government is facing a tough decision.  Will they decide to allow Princess Elizabeth to promise to 'obey'  Lt. Philip Mountbatten , when they marry in November at Westminster Abbey,  reports the Associated Press.

The report is based on an article in today's London Star.

A Church of England bishop has sent to to the Princess, as a gift, two prayer books containing the marriage service.  One of the services omits the word 'obey.' while the older service binds "even a Queen to mind her husband."

Princess Elizabeth will be able to compare the two services, but there is a snag.  The service that includes 'obey' is the only service  with Parliamentary approval.

In 1929, Parliament "turned down the revised prayer book," but it has come into "wide use."

Ferdinand to send daughter to USA

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 August 11, 1917

Princess Elizabeth, the eldest daughter of King Ferdinand and Queen Marie of Romania,  will becoming to America, reports the Washington Post.

The princess is expected to arrive in the middle of November, and "will land at a Pacific port," as she is coming by way of Russia.

Word about the trip comes from the "famous actress," Lois Fuller, who has been in the "United States some months on a special mission for Queen Marie."

Princess Elizabeth will celebrate her 23rd birthday in October.  She is the second child of King Ferdinand and Queen Marie. Her elder brother, Carol, is the Crown Prince.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

No, No, No - the Queen is not bypassing Charles.

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Julia Birkinbine, who "writes" for Closer magazine  ... and I use the word magazine rather loosely, has new headbanger today.   I also question if Julia is an actual writer or a hairball specialist.   She does not deserve to be called a writer. Shame on this twat.


Dear not-so-bright Julia,

Your story is full of merde.   I cannot believe that your editor  --- do you have an educated editor -- allowed this piece of trash  (flapdoodle) to go on the website.  You should have verified the Life & Style article.  It would have been easy.  Everyone one knows Life & Style and Closer magazines should never be treated seriously.

Oh, wait .. Closer is a rag, not a real magazine.  You made this up ... on the loo or perhaps having a cup of tea?

Listen to an expert .. and trust me, I know what I am talking about?  You apparently don't.

Queen Elizabeth II cannot change the succession to the throne.   Succession to the throne is based on legislation.  Parliament legislates.  The Queen signs the legislation into law.

In 2013, Parliament passed the Succession to the Crown Act, which made a few changes to the Act of Settlement (1701).  The new succession law is gender equal, meaning the first born is heir apparent, regardless of sex, rather than boys before girls (which of course was never a part of the Act of Settlement.  Male line primogeniture in the UK was based on tradition, rather than law.

The new law supersedes the Royal Marriages Act, which means only the first six line to the throne need the permission of the sovereign to marry.

According to the 1931 Act of Westminster, "any alteration in the law touching the Succession to the Throne or the Royal Style and Titles shall hereafter require the assent as well of the Parliaments of all the Dominions as of the Parliament of the United Kingdom."

All of the countries would have to approve or pass legislation:  Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, Barbados, Belize, Canada, Grenada, Jamaica, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Solomon Islands, The Bahamas, Tuvalu and the United Kingdom.

Julia, darling, you might want to get on your phone and "Get me rewrite!" because you need to rewrite your article with the facts.  I can do it for you, if you like.

"What a royal family shake-up!  Not!  Queen Elizabeth has not named her beloved grandson Prince William and his wife, Kate Middleton, the next King and Queen of England, because she does not have the power to do so.  She also knows she is not Queen of England, but Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland plus 15 other countries.  Don't believe anything according to Life & Style magazine. Fortunately, this means the Queen's eldest son, Prince Charles, has not  been skipped over in the British monarchy's line of succession.

Note to Julia:  William's official title is the Duke of Cambridge.  His wife is the Duchess of Cambridge.  Not Kate Middleton. 

"Her Majesty realized that William and Kate are the future  after Charles. She has spent 65 years making sure that the House of Windsor survives, and she is concerned that William and Kate as having the energy and star quality to do the job in a modern world. Queen Elizabeth will always do what is best for the long-term health of the monarchy," a palace insider recently told the entertainment news magazine, but this palace insider is probably not an insider at all, let alone someone who knows about the monarchy.

"With all the drama that has surrounded the royal family over recent decades, Elizabeth realizes the monarchy no longer has the respect and power it once had," another source said. "In her eyes, William and Kate are not ready at present to be the  two people who can turn that around."

Sadly, the 91-year-old Queen's  non decision to pass the crown (because she does not have that power) on to William, 35, instead of Charles, 68, has had no effect on Will's relationship with his dad. "Things have been a bit strained between William and his father since the Queen’s decision.    The Queen has not made any decision about the succession, as it is not her job. Only Parliament can pass legislation.

"But they are slowly getting used to doing actual royal duties." the royal insider revealed.

 Interestingly, Charles' wife of 12 years,  the Duchess of Cornwall  isn't upset by her mother-in-law's big news.  Of course she is not upset because the Queen has not made this news ....   Lies, false story.

"She’s secretly thrilled about the Queen’s decision. At 70, she’s had enough drama to last her a lifetime. [But], it’s hard on Charles. He has been unlucky as the man with the longest wait for a job ever," royal author Duncan Larcombe told Life & Style.

Mr. Larcombe is the former royal editor at the Sun newspaper and has written a book on Prince Harry.  Surely, former royal editors at the Sun know  about royalty, let alone their history and how their government works.   Surely, Mr Larcombe knows how a bill becomes a law.  

May I recommend giving up your day job.  You have no concept of fact checking or appreciating Who, What, Where, How and Why?  You are a terrible journalist.

You must have received your J Degree from Trump University.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Prince Henrik opens his mouth ... again

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Dear Prince Henrik,

Please shut up.  You need medication for your chronic Foot in Mouth disease.

You cannot be king.  You are not the sovereign.

Do you not understand how the Danish monarchy works?  Do you not know that your wife is the Head of State?

Have you  read the Danish Constitution?

Denmark is a Kingdom.   The King is the head of state.  Please note the use of the word King.

"1. This Constitution Act shall apply to all parts of the Kingdom of Denmark.

2. The form of government shall be that of a constitutional monarchy. The Royal Power shall be inherited by men and women in accordance with the provisions of the Succession to the Throne Act, 27th March, 1953.

3. The legislative power shall be vested in the King and the Folketing conjointly. The executive power shall be vested in the King. The judicial power shall be vested in the courts of justice."

Here is the original Danish:   Kongen is used throughout the Constitution.  King.   Succession is gender equal, but the Sovereign is the King (although a female King is styled as Queen.)

§ 1
Denne grundlov gælder for alle dele af Danmarks Rige.

§ 2
Regeringsformen er indskrænket-monarkisk. Kongemagten nedarves til mænd og kvinder efter de i tronfølgeloven af 27. marts 1953 fastsatte regler.

§ 3
Den lovgivende magt er hos kongen og folketinget i forening. Den udøvende magt er hos kongen. Den dømmende magt er hos domstolene.

In other words, Henrik.  Your wife is the King of Denmark.    You cannot be king at all. Get over it.   It a fit of pique, you renounced the title of Prince Consort after your decision to retire from public duties.

Se and Hor, a Danish magazine, has scored an exclusive interview with the petulant Henrik at his estate in Cayx, France.   You would hope he has learned from the embarrassment of his recent comments?   Sadly, there is no hope.

His affliction is far worse than foot in mouth disease.  More like diarrhea of the mouth.

Henrik, 83, told the reporter that it is his wife "who makes me look like a fool.  I
 I have not married the Queen to be buried in Roskilde."  

"My wife has decided she wants to be queen and I am very happy. But as a human being, she must know that if a husband and wife are married, they are equal."  

Oh, Lord, what fool this mortal be!  (Paraphrasing Puck from A Midsummer Night's Dream.)  Oh, Henrik!    Someone needs to explain to you that your wife did not decide to be Queen.  In 1953,  Denmark moved from Salic law to first born son, but girls were also given the right to succeed.  As King Frederik IX and Queen Ingrid were the parents of three daughters, Margrethe became the heir to the throne.   Succession to the Danish throne is now gender equal, meaning the first born child is the heir/ess apparent.

Henrik,  you married the heir to the throne.  Yes, in your marriage, you may be equal, but your wife is the Head of State (since 1972, when King Frederik IX died).   This role is outside the marriage.  This is her job.  Not your job.     The spouse of the head of state does not have a constitutional role. Period.  Your role as the spouse of the Head of State is to support her in her duties.  There can be no equality between the Head of State and the spouse.   But when you are behind closed doors -- and living as a family --- then, perhaps, there can be equality in the actual marriage.   This can involved decisions about raising your children for example.   

You claim Margrethe does not give you respect that you believe you deserve?   What about respecting her very difficult position as Head of State?   Your role is to support her in her duties as Head of State.  That's how it works.  Yes. it must be difficult - and it takes a strong, dedicated, non-whiny person who understands this.  You get to wear the pants when the doors are closed.   Your wife is the Sovereign, the King, who is styled Queen.  

Although Henrik states that Margrethe does not respect him, he does not doubt his wife's love.  

"Yes, we love each other," he told the reporter.   He also said:   "If she  wants to have me buried next to her, she must make me a king-consort. That's it."  

Queen Margrethe II is scheduled to arrive at Cayx later today, to join her husband for a two week holiday.   Oh, to be the fly on the wall.

I think it is time for you to stay at your home in France.

The palace press office will not offer comment on Henrik's latest outburst.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Prince Philip of Serbia's wedding

@Crown Prince Alexander


Belgrade, 4 August 2017 – His Royal Highness Prince Philip and Miss Danica Marinkovic wedding will take place in the Cathedral of St. Michael the Archangel (“Saborna crkva”) in Belgrade, Serbia, on Saturday, 7 October 2017.
The wedding will be officiated by the Serbian Patriarch His Holiness Irinej.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Another nail in the coffin for Prince Henrik

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Prince Henrik, the outspoken and insecure consort of Queen Margrethe II, has done it again.

Earlier today, the Palace issued a statement regarding Henrik's burial wish.  He does not wish to be buried in Roskilde Cathedral with his wife because he isn't king.

The French-born Henrik, 83,  retired  from official duties in 2016.  This announcement was made by Queen Margrethe II in a speech on December 31, 2015.  His retirement was effective from January 1, 2016.   Four and a half months later, on April 16,  Henrik renounced his title of Prince Consort, which he had received in 2006.

I am going to say this straight out:  Prince Henrik is a pompous and petulant old man with little regard or appreciation for his wife, who happens to be the Sovereign, the head of state, of Denmark, or his son, Crown Prince Frederik, the heir apparent.

In 2002,  Henrik had a temper tantrum and decided to leave Denmark and spend a few weeks at the family home in Caix, France.  The reason for his foot-stamping exit was due to the fact that Crown Prince Frederik was named as host of the annual New Year's Day reception in place of Queen Margrethe, who was unable to attend.

Henrik was furious that his son was asked to step in for the Queen.  Henrik felt that he, the consort, should have been the one.   He probably ordered his bags to be packed,  got a plane ticket and flew to France to sulk and drown his sorrows with a bottle of good wine from his estate.

After his return to Denmark in the middle of February,  Henrik said he "pushed aside, degraded and humiliated", and he had lost his  self-respect.

"For many years I have been Denmark's number two," he said. "I've been satisfied with that role, but I don't want to be relegated to number three after so many years."

Dude:  your son is the heir to the throne. You are not the star of the show.   Your wife is the Head of State.  She is the one with constitutional.  The spouse of the sovereign has no constitutional role, so regardless of the title, the spouse of the Sovereign will not have the same rank, position or role.  Got it.

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 "The royal house has today announced that his Royal Highness Prince Henrik does not want to be buried in Roskilde Cathedral, as it has otherwise been planned.

The Prince's decision implies that the Prince will not lie next to her Majesty Queen under the sarcophagus that Professor and sculptor Bjørn Nørgaard has prepared.

The Queen has for some time been familiar with the decision of the Royal Highness and agrees with the decision. The Prince's decision does not change the Queen's funeral plans.

It has been promoted in the media that the Prince wants to be buried in France. This is not correct. The prince still wishes to be buried in Denmark, but the circumstances are not yet in place. "

Seriously, Henrik,  do you dislike your wife so much that you do not wish to be buried with her because you cannot have the title king?  Time to stop the petulance.   Take a look across the North Sea to the United Kingdom, and how the Duke of Edinburgh, consort of Queen Elizabeth II, has handled being a Prince without the official title of Prince Consort.  Did you follow the news yesterday of the dignified retirement.    Talk about service to one's country and one's sovereign.  Of course, in precedence, the Duke of Edinburgh has precedence over his son, the Prince of Wales.  He does not have temper tantrums when the Prince of Wales has filled in for the Queen.  Why?  Charles is the heir apparent.  It is called learning the job.

Lene Balleby, the Danish royal house's communication manager, spoke to the Danish newspaper, BT, about Henrik's decision.

It is true that Prince Henrik has decided that he will not be buried in Roskilde Cathedral as planned.  It's no secret that for many years the prince has been dissatisfied with his role and the title he has received in the Danish monarchy.  The dissatisfaction has increased in recent years.  For the prince, the decision to not be buried beside the queen is the natural consequence of not have been treated equally in relation to his spouse -- not having the title and function he desires."

In other words, Prince Henrik believes he does not believe he should be with the queen in death when he has not been a king in life.

Balleby added:  "The Prince loves Denmark and has worked for Denmark for more than 50 years.  Therefore, the prince will also be buried in Denmark, but the plans for his burial are not yet in place.  Queen Margrethe has known for a long time about the the prince's decision and agrees with it.

"Of course, it's a decision that the queen probably did not like, but she has known about it for a long time, so the news has not come as a surprise.  The announcement does not meant that their vacation plans in France have changed."

Balleby also reiterated that Margrethe and Henrik are not getting a divorce, or that she plans to abdicate because of Henrik's "far-reaching decision."

"This has no consequence for the Queen's work," said Balleby.

The palace spokesman also responded to a question on why Henrik's wishes were not granted.  "Prince Henrik has his own court, but in terms of the title issue, we chose to the follow the European tradition that has been applicable in England and the Netherlands.   The couple's professional activities and their marriage are two different things."

Good spin, but I think Henrik's decision is yet another knife in the Queen's heart.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

The Duke of Edinburgh's final official engagement

Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images The Duke of Edinburgh is 96 years old. He may still accompany the Queen on her engagements or state events, but as of today, the longest serving consort is putting his feet up. Your Royal Highness, thank you for your service to your Queen and to your country.

22,219 official engagements: The Duke of Edinburgh retires today

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"He has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years."

This statement was made by Queen Elizabeth II on the occasion of her 50th wedding anniversary to Prince Philip.

Today, after more than 65 years of public engagements, HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, Earl of Merioneth, Baron Greenwich, at age 96, is retiring from royal engagements.

Later today at Buckingham Palace, the Duke will attend attend a parade of Royal Marines.  He will also meet servicemen who took part in a 1,664 mile race to raise money for the Royal Marine's Charity.

The first meeting between the handsome young prince and the heiress presumptive to the throne is usually said to be the summer of 1939 when King George VI and Queen Elizabeth, accompanied by their two young daughters, Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret, paid a visit to Dartmouth College.

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The naval cadets were scheduled to join the royal family at services at the college, but several were sick, due to mumps and chicken pox.    Thus, another naval cadet. Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark, was allegedly roped in to entertain the young princesses.

In his biography of Philip, Basil Boothroyd notes that there are different views of this meeting.  One said "they had a glorious time."  Another noted that Princess Elizabeth kept asking: "When are we going home?"   Philip did suggest a game of croquet or a game of tennis, and allegedly "showed off by jumping over the net."

Elizabeth responded: "How good he is! How high can he jump!"  Or "can we go home."

But this was not the first meeting  between the third cousins.  Elizabeth and Philip most certainly met in 1934 at the wedding of Elizabeth's uncle, Prince George, Duke of Kent, to Philip's first cousin, Princess Marina of Greece and and Denmark.   They also shared the same circle of childhood friends:  Patricia and Pamela Mountbatten,  David, the Earl of Medina, and  Alex, Georgina and Myra Wernher.  

Alex was very much the older brother to Philip, and his sister, Gina, was one of the Queen's lifelong friends.

 During the war, Prince Philip visited Windsor Castle on numerous occasions.

The American-born Sir Henry "Chips Channon was in Athens in January 1941 at the same time as the young Prince Philip, who was on leave from the HMS Valiant.   Chips, who was married to Lady Honor Guinness,  had been meeting with Philip's aunt,  Princess Nicholas of Greece (mother of Marina).  It seems they have been discussing Philip's future marriage.   In his diary,  which was published after his death in 1967,  Chips confided: "He is to be our Prince Consort and that is why he is serving in our Navy."

In 1944, he wrote:  "I do believe that a marriage may well be arranged one day between Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip."   During a visit to Coppins, the home of the widowed Duchess of Kent,  Chips noticed that Philip was a frequent visitor as his name appeared numerous times in the guest book.

Chips believed that Philip and Elizabeth often met at Coppins.  Philip was "infuriated" that Chips was spreading such rumors.  He insists that a marriage with Elizabeth did not cross his mind until 1946.

Another American princess in waiting?

While the tabloid media focuses on American actress Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, another American woman could become the wife of the second in line to the Liechtenstein throne.

Although I know the name of the young woman -- she is about 22 -- I am not publishing (yet) here on Royal Musings because she and Prince Joseph-Wenzel have not gone public even though they have been dating for some time.

The young woman is a Jersey girl, from the shore, as her family lives in Long Branch, New Jersey.   Her father owns several local businesses.

She attended Kent School, a private boarding school in Connecticut before heading to Washington, D.C. where she was a student at George Washington University.  She graduated in 2017.

During the summer of 2015, she had an internship at the Embassy of Liechtenstein in Washington. D.C.

She now lives in Vienna, where she is a student at the University of Vienna.

In the last 24 hours, the young woman has closed her Instagram account (which was private), her LinkedIn account (Austria), and her telephone listing in the Austrian telephone directory.

All of this information comes from publically available sources.

Prince Joseph-Wenzel of Liechtenstein was born on May 24, 1995, in London, the first of four children of HSH Prince Alois, Hereditary Prince of Liechtenstein, and HRH Duchess Sophie in Bavaria.

He attended Malvern College, a British boarding school, in 2014.  He spent his gap year, gaining work experience in the United States and South America.  He began his university studies in the fall of 2015, concentrating on legal studies.   An MBA may also be in his future.

Liechtenstein may be a tiny principality, nestled in the Alps between Switzerland and Austria, but it is a wealthy country - and the Prince of Liechtenstein is one of the wealthiest of royals.  His family owns a bank and an impressive art collection.

Don't expect an engagement any time soon.  Both Prince Wenzel and his Jersey girl (hey, I can say this because I am a Jersey girl) are at university.  It is telling that the young woman has moved to Vienna as the Princely family still owns property in Austria.

Vaduz has no airport or train station.  It is about a 7-8 hour train ride from Vienna to Feldkirch, Austria -- the border crossing point - where one catches a bus into Liechtenstein.   The most convenient is to fly from Vienna to Zurich, then drive to Vaduz, which is less than 2 hours away.

At some point,  the young woman's name will appear in magazines and newspapers ... if an engagement is announced -- and I think this will not happen in the next few months.    Will she be in Vaduz for Liechtenstein's National Day on August 15th?

Time will tell!