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Showing posts from July, 2013

Book of the Week: Cupid and the King: Five Royal Paramours

Princess Michael of Kent's winning piece Cupid and the King: Five Royal Paramours gives us a riveting tale of five of the historically-renowned royal mistresses: Nell Gwyn, Madame Pompadour, Maria Walewska, Lola Montez and Lillie Langtry. A natural successor to Crowned in a Faraway Country, Princess Michael's biography of eight princesses, Cupid and the King focuses on the women whom the mighty ruler, the richest and most powerful man the kingdom, chose to love.

The names mentioned in this book are already well-known among history-enthusiasts, but their lives are often shrouded in so much fantasy and falsehood that the only attribute which is never denied them the mystique attached to a woman who won, and held, the heart of a king. Their backgrounds differed dramatically, yet each became the beloved paramour of a monarch. It is a study of female ambition and motivation, of greed and also selflessness, of love and hate, passion and devotion as well as self-destruction. Amazo…

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge name their Baby Boy George

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are delighted to announce that they have named their son George Alexander Louis.

The baby will be known as His Royal Highness Prince George of Cambridge.

George is a favorite name in the family. The Queen's father and grand father both took the name George upon ascension to the throne (George V and VI). George was also the name of the second Duke of Cambridge, a first cousin of Queen Victoria. The first four Hanoverian kings were all Georges (George I through IV), too.

However, the couple insisted the baby is not named after the two kings, instead, they took the name because it means farmer or earth worker.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Leave Hospital for Kensington Palace

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have left hospital for Kensington Palace with their new baby son. The couple revealed that they haven’t chosen a name for the baby yet.
Prince William and Kate were filled with joy as they wave to the well-wishing crowds and to the awaiting cameras eager to take snapshots of the royal baby.
The Duchess was moved by the outpour of support : “It's been very emotional. Any parent will know what this feeling is like.”
Prince William was carefully cradling their baby prince as he followed the steps his parents Charles and Diana as they took with him home to Kensington Palace about 31 years ago, when he was born there on June 21, 1982.
“He's a big boy, quite heavy. We're still working on a name,” Prince William told reporters.
“Well he has a good pair of lungs on him, that's for sure,” he added. 

A message from The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge: Thank You!

“We would like to thank the staff at the Lindo Wing and the whole hospital for the tremendous care the three of us have received.

 "We know it has been a very busy period for the hospital and we would like to thank everyone - staff, patients and visitors - for their understanding during this time.”

4 Royal Births that Changed the Course of the British Monarchy

The birth of Baby Cambridge garnered much media attention the world over, but whether he'll change the course of the British monarchy or not, we do not know yet, although we expect him to rule as ably as her great-grandma Queen Elizabeth II. Let's take a look back at the royal births who made history and shaped the way the see the British monarchy today.

Elizabeth II, born 1926
When Queen Elizabeth II was born in 1926, little did everyone know that the elder daughter of the Duke and Duchess of York would one day ascend the British throne. Her uncle David, Prince of Wales, was the most eligible bachelor in the realm and it was hoped he would father a child and heir. But it never happened. He abdicated as King Edward VIII in 1936 and the throne passed on to Elizabeth's father, who reigned as George VI, making her heiress presumptive. Her own shining moment came in 1952, when she succeeded as Queen.

A Healthy Baby Boy for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge was safely delivered of a son at 4.24pm, we learned from the Royal Family's official Facebook page.

The baby weighs 8lbs 6oz.

The Duke of Cambridge was present for the birth.

The Queen, The Duke of Edinburgh, The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, Prince Harry and members of both families have been informed and are delighted with the news.

Her Royal Highness and her child are both doing well and will remain in hospital overnight.

Royal History: Alfonso XIII Punishes Cousin for Marrying Without His Consent

Madrid, July 17, 1909 - A dispatch from Madrid to the New York Times can reveal that King Alfonso XIII has stripped his cousin, Prince Alfonso of Bourbon-Orleans of his title Infante of Spain, as well as his Spanish honors and decorations after marrying Princess Beatrice of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha without securing royal consent. The marriage took place last July 15 in Coburg, Germany.

A dispatch from Coburg meanwhile revealed that "State Secretary Von Richter performed the ceremony," which was followed by "a wedding according to the rites of the Catholic Church" at St. Augustin's Church. This was followed by a Protestant wedding at the Edinburgh Castle chapel.

Prince Alfonso was born in Madrid in 1886, the son of Prince Antoine-Louis-Philippe, Duke of Galliera, and of Infanta Eulalia of Spain. He is the great-grandson of Louis-Philippe, the king who was dethroned in 1848.

Royal History: Death of Empress Eugenie

Madrid, July 11, 1920 - Europe's Queen of Sorrow, Empress Eugenie of France, died shortly before 8 am due to acute intestinal inflammation, a dispatch from Madrid to the New York Times, reported. Her death came quietly, said her lady-in-waiting the Duchess of Alba, who was the only person right beside her, when she breathe her last. Her nephew, the Duke of Alba, at whose residence he died, was in France, while other members of the family were absent.

Royal History: Prince Arthur may Marry Lady Marjorie Manners

London, June 20 - King Edward VII may give his consent should his nephew Prince Arthur seek the hands of Lady Marjorie Manners for marriage. The New York Times reported that "a fresh basis has been given for the predictions that an engagement between Lady Marjorie Manners and Prince Arthur of Connaught would shortly be announced." Lady Majorie was sitting beside Princess Patricia in Ascot last week.

Lady Marjorie's presence at the event was taken as a nod of the King's approval and consent to her marriage to the Prince. The newspaper predicted that the match would be "a happy ending."

Lady Marjorie's parents are the Duke and Duchess of Rutland, better known as the former Lord and Lady Granby. After all, Lady Marjorie is a close pal of Princess Patricia's and that of her elder sister, Princess Margaret.

Royal History: Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha to Abdicate?

London, June 19, 1899 - The Daily Mail's Berlin correspondent reported that Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh and reigning Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha "would probably abdicate" this year. C.F von Strange, the Minister of State, allegedly made the confidential pronouncement at the conclusion of a "secret session" of the duchy's Diet.

Prince Alfred was born in 1844. He was the second son and fourth child of Queen Victoria and of Prince Albert, the younger son of the Duke of Saxe-coburg and Gotha. Albert's elder brother succeeded as the duchy's ruler, but he failed to have an heir of his own. The Prince of Wales declined the title, so it eventually passed on to Alfred upon the duke's death in 1893. The duke was married to Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna, only daughter of Czar Alexander II of Russia. The marriage was blessed with four daughters, Marie, Victoria Melita, Alexandra and Beatrice. Their only son was the Hereditary Prince Alfred, who w…

Royal History: Princess Christian Holds Reception

London, May 10, 1899 - In the absence of Queen Victoria, Princess Christian presided over the third Drawing Room of the season, reports The New Yorks Times. The weather was very fine, but, as expected, large crowd gathered around the Mall. However, the "customary gorgeuous State processions" starting at Marlborough House until St. James' Palace "were lacking." Likewise, the various royal residences remained unoccupied this season. The Prince of Wales is at Newmarket today, while the Princess of Wales and the Duchess of York are out of town. The only members of the royal family present at court today are Princess Victoria of Wales and the Duchess of Connaught.

Among the dignitaries who were around included US Ambassafor Joseph H. Choate, together with his staff. The ambassador's wife presented Mrs. Alfred E. Bates, wife of the retiring military attache and Miss Bates; Mrs. William M. Osborne and Miss Osborne, wife and daughter of the Consul General in Londo…

Royal History: The Coronation of King George V

June 11, 1911 - The coronation of King Edward VII was the very first of its kind since her mother's own in 1838; so there was much to discover, consider and devise. When King George V and Queen Mary pass into Westminster Abbey on June 22 this year, the interval will have been only one of nine years; the arrangements will be easier, the experience fresh.

An English sovereign is placed in legal possession of his rights by the Act of Settlement, by his proclamation, by his acceptance in the Privy Council, and by the oath of allegiance taken by the two houses of Parliament. The position is one of enormous responsibility. The Lords and Commons are his advisers; in his name and by his authority power to act is given to judges, magistrates, the colonial parliaments, the navy, the army and all the vast brances of the civil service.

Royal History: The Duchess of Cambridge's estate

June 10, 1889 - The New World revealed that the estate of the late Duchess of Cambridge was estimated at around 220,000 pounds. She left 17,500 each to her grandchildren, the daughter and son of the Duke and Duchess of Teck. She also bequeathed them her savings, estimated at 50,000 pounds. Meanwhile, her collection of china and miniatures are bequeathed to Gloucester House, while her younger daughter, Princess Mary, received her carriages and wine. To her son in law, she left 5,000 pounds, "which has greatly helped to assuage his ruined feelings about the funeral arrangements." The residue of her estate is to be divided equally between her two daughters, Princess Mary and Princess Augusta, Grand Duchess of Mecklenburg-Strelitz. The sisters are also charged of paying certain bequests, although the Grand Duchess herself has volunteered to do so. However, the advances made by the Duke and Duchess of Teck are to be charged against their share of inheritance.

Royal History: Duke of Connaught becomes Governor-General of Canada

London, June 9, 1910 - Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught, will succeed Earl Grey as the next governor-general of Canada, reports The New York Times. It has been the wish of the late King Edward VII to have his brother placed as head of the state of Canada. Before taking the helm in spring, he is scheduled to inaugurate the Parliament in South Africa.

Royal Baby Update: Britain Prepares for the Birth of Baby Cambridge

Six days to go and Britain’s third-in-line to throne will see the light of this world. And everyone’s just excited for the coming of this baby!
Since the birth of Prince William in 1982, no royal birth has garnered such media attention until it was announced that Prince William and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, they are expecting their baby on July 13… or maybe sooner?
In fact, Mail Online reveals  that a privately chartered helicopter has already landed just outside the couple’s farmhouse in Wales. It will remain on stand-by to fly William – still working as a search-and-rescue pilot at RAF Valley in Anglesey – to his wife’s side in under two hours.If possible, the Prince is hoping to drive Kate to hospital from their Kensington Palace home.

Queen Victoria and Her Great Grandchildren

In this feature article published by the Windsor Magazine July 5, 1896, Marie Belloc gives us a detailed look at how Queen Victoria looks after her huge family. We now know that as a great-grand-granny, the great queen-empress was as attentive a matriarch to her young ones, as much as she was to the details of her far-flung empire.
July 5, 1896 - Queen Victoria can claim a greater number of descendants than any three other European sovereigns. Her descendants of the second, third, and fourth generations are to be found in most of the royal houses in Europe, and of them, there are none in whom she takes a keener interest than in her twenty-two British, German, Rumanian, Greek, and Russian great-grandchildren. Keen observers of her Majesty have noticed that she always wears two bracelets. The one on her right wrist contains a miniature of the late Prince Consort, in the other is inserted a portrait of the royal baby who, for the time being, occupies the proud position of her Majesty…

A Royal Couple: Prince and Princess Michael of Kent

In 2013, while the rest of the nation were festively rejoicing the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II's coronation, Prince and Princess Michael of Kent had their own reason to call that year a milestone in their lives--they celebrated their 35th wedding anniversary. In a family plagued by divorce and Prince and Princess Michael of Kent's marriage is a deviation, although that didn't come without any controversy. Given their high profile lifestyle, busy schedule and constant separation from one another due to commitments, not to mention the many tales of alleged extra-marital affairs, it is still refreshing to learn that the Prince and Princess still find their marriage strong and sturdy. Scandal and intrigue is nothing new to the Kents. 
After all, their marriage almost rocked the Royal Family, to the magnitude that could have matched the Edward-Wallis Affair, or the Margaret-Townsend fling, had Prince Michael been a closer heir to the Throne. But there's no need f…

Celebrating Prince Albert and Princess Charlene’s Wedding

The royal wedding of Prince Albert II of Monaco and Charlene Wittstock was a magical day that evoked some poignant memories in Monaco. As the breathtaking blonde bride stood at the ornate altar in the Palais Princier, royal observers couldn’t help thinking back to the principality’s last wedding of a reigning sovereign in April 1956, when the beautiful actress Grace Kelly married Prince Rainier III and became a Princess.
The glamorous screen legend would surely have been overjoyed to see her son, Prince Albert, wed as elegant and poised a young woman as South African Olympic swimmer Charlene Wittstock. And it would have moved the late royal couple to see their own nuptials reenacted decades later, bringing new love to the palace, and ushering in a new era for the Grimaldi dynasty.
But in the absence of Princess Grace and Prince Rainier, Monegasque celebrated for them, gathering to watch the ceremony on giant TV’s throughout Monaco and erupting in cheers as Albert and Charlene excha…

Royal History: Prince and Princess of Wales' Baby's Named William

July 2, 1982 - Newsweek reports that the "most famous baby in the world finally got a handle: William Arthur Philip Louis, or Prince William of Wales for short."

However, the magazine was quick to point out the baby's not going to be called Bill, Will, or Will, Buckingham Palace has made that perfectly clear.

"It is a very nice name," said the baby's pop Prince Charles, "and it doesn't exist in the immediate family." Of course, Prince Philip is for grandpa Philip and Louis is Charles' adored great-uncle, the Earl Mountbatten, who was killed by an IRA bomb in 1979. William and Arthur are both find old names for British kings; the baby will likely become King William V one day. Besides having a lot of names, royal babies get plenty of godparents: six have been named, including former King Constantine of Greece, a cousin and chum of Charles who lives in exile in London.

Rest in Peace, Princess Fawzia Fuad of Egypt

Egypt's former King Fuad II announced the death of his aunt, Princess Fawazia Fuad. She was 92. The princess, hailed for her exotic beauty and elegance, was the daughter of King Faruk I. In 1939, she married Mohammed Reza Pahlavi, Shah of Iran. They divorced in 1938. In 1949, he married, for the second time, the Egyptian army officer Ismail Chirine.

Belgium will have 2 Kings and 3 Queens

The abdication of King Albert II will give Belgium more living kings and queens that any other countries in the world. Unlike the neighboring kingdom of the Netherlands, in Belgium, a former reigning sovereign gets to keep his title. This was not the case for Queen Beatrix. When she abdicated in April, she ceased from being Queen, but reverted to her former title as a Princess of the Netherlands.

So, that makes King Albert still a king, but the real, reigning sovereign and head of state would be his son and successor, King Philippe.

Belgium will also have three queens: the new Queen Consort, Mathilde; Queen Paola, King Albert's wife; and Queen Fabiola, widow of King Baudouin, who died in 1991.

Queen Opens Abbotsford House

Queen Elizabeth II officially reopened Abbotsford House, the former home of the world's first best-selling author, Sir Walter Scott, last July 3. The house is located near Melrose, in the Scottish Borders. Abbotsford House has been under restoration for two years. The cost of restoring it back to its most splendid image cost a staggering £12m . Sir Walter Scott's most immortal works include Waverley, Rob Roy and Ivanhoe.

King Albert II Abdicates

Following the steps of his neighbor, Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, King Albert II has announced before national television that he will abdicate on July 21 in favor of his heir, Crown Prince Philippe.

King Albert was born on June 6, 1934, the second son of King Leopold III and Princess Astrid of Sweden, who died while he was just five years old. He inherited the throne upon the death of his elder brother, King Baudouin in 1993.

The King's reign was generally peaceful, although it was never out of scandal. The entirety of his twenty-year reign was marked by strife between Dutch-speaking Flanders in the north and the French-speaking Wallonia is the south.

Shortly after he succeeded on the throne, a scandal forced her to recognize an illegitimate daughter, Delphine Boel.
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