Author Topic: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?  (Read 52003 times)

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Offline Превед

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #45 on: April 20, 2014, 09:39:59 AM »
Who knows who first called Alexandra Alicky, I believe her parents called her Alix, probably Queen Victoria in order to distinguish her from Alix the Princess of Wales?

I would assume it was a nickname from baby speech. Two-consonant combinations such as the /ks/ in Alix are difficult for toddlers learning to speak. She or her siblings would probably have pronounced her name Alliggy or something like that.

In relation to German surnames, the seriously aristocratic didn't necessarily use  'von' all that much, at any rate among themselves,, so AH for Alix Hesse would be perfectly reasonable.

Yes, and in German reigning families like das Haus Hessen, the House of Hesse, are not thought of as "von Hessen", which sounds like a family of the lower nobility.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2014, 09:51:01 AM by Превед »
Берёзы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и берёзы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline AGRBear

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #46 on: April 20, 2014, 04:44:42 PM »
Before her marriage, she was HRH Princess Alix Victoria Helena Louise Beatrice..... After she converted (before marriage) she was ..... Aleksandra Feodorovna..... After, HIM Empress (or Tsarina) Aleksandra Feodorovna Romanova.

Almost correct:

Yup, that's true.

Alice wanted to name Alexandra after herself, but because German people can't pronounce Alice, she named Alexandra the most similar name phonetically to Alice, Alix.

Though, of course, as per tradition, Alix's real first name was Victoria.  Alix was her second name.


From a letter written by Princess Alice to Queen Victoria, quoted in Greg King's Last Empress:
'Alix' we gave for 'Alice' as they murder my name here: 'Aliice' they pronounce it, so we thought 'Alix' could not be so easliy spoilt.

(King found the quote in Buxhoeveden's book, The Life and Tragedy of Alexandra Feodorovna.)

 8)

From page 329 of Court of the Last Tsar:

"Alix had apparently wished to take the name Catherine on entering the Orthodox Church; the new emperor, however, suggested Alexandra, echoing not only the closest Russian equivalent of Alix, but also evoking the reign of his great-grandfather Nicholas I and his wife, Empress Alexandra."

The source is given as The Times, November 14, 1894.

AGRBear
« Last Edit: April 20, 2014, 05:06:10 PM by AGRBear »
"What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight."

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Offline Превед

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #47 on: April 20, 2014, 04:57:17 PM »
Before her marriage, she was HRH Princess Alix Victoria Helena Louise Beatrice..... After she converted (before marriage) she was ..... Aleksandra Feodorovna..... After, HIM Empress (or Tsarina) Aleksandra Feodorovna Romanova.

I believe RomanovFan post is accurate about her given names and "Feodorovna" which is discussed more fully on that thread.

No, it's not acurate: Her style was not HRH, but Her Grand-Ducal Highness, HGDH. Ihre großherzogliche Hoheit! Son Altesse grand-ducale! Её Великогерцогское Высочество!
It sure beats me how people can get these things wrong when Wikipedia is just one click away!

And it would not be correct to use the dynastic name Romanova together with her imperial style and title. You don't call QEII Queen Elizabeth Windsor, do you?
« Last Edit: April 20, 2014, 05:07:38 PM by Превед »
Берёзы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и берёзы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline Превед

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #48 on: April 20, 2014, 05:22:40 PM »
Yup, that's true.

Alice wanted to name Alexandra after herself, but because German people can't pronounce Alice, she named Alexandra the most similar name phonetically to Alice, Alix.

This is also misleading. The closest phonetic equivalent in German to Alice is surely Elise. (Especially in the Upper RP sociolect of the British RF, with their very tense and clipped vowels, in which Alice does sound like Ellis!)

Have you people never played or heard Beethoven's "Für Elise"? :-) Or the more common variety Else. The thing is, these were not names deemed fit for royalty by the powers that be at the court of Darmstadt! (NB Elise and Else have a different etymology, they are short forms of Elisabeth.)

When looking for a name similar to Alice, Princess Alice chose a rare, medieval, French form of Adelheidis / Adelaide / Alice: Alix. A name that had been born by many august royalties, including Alice and Alix's oldest-known matrilineal ancestress: 12th-century Adélaďde de Béziers, by marriage Countess of Forcalquier.

« Last Edit: April 20, 2014, 05:29:37 PM by Превед »
Берёзы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и берёзы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline AGRBear

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #49 on: April 20, 2014, 05:33:37 PM »
Before her marriage, she was HRH Princess Alix Victoria Helena Louise Beatrice..... After she converted (before marriage) she was ..... Aleksandra Feodorovna..... After, HIM Empress (or Tsarina) Aleksandra Feodorovna Romanova.

I believe RomanovFan post is accurate about her given names and "Feodorovna" which is discussed more fully on that thread.

No, it's not acurate: Her style was not HRH, but Her Grand-Ducal Highness, HGDH. Ihre großherzogliche Hoheit! Son Altesse grand-ducale! Её Великогерцогское Высочество!
It sure beats me how people can get these things wrong when Wikipedia is just one click away!



And it would not be correct to use the dynastic name Romanova together with her imperial style and title. You don't call QEII Queen Elizabeth Windsor, do you?

Error slipped passed me.

Thanks.

AGRBear
« Last Edit: April 20, 2014, 05:38:44 PM by AGRBear »
"What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight."

Joubert, Pensees, No. 152

Offline Превед

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #50 on: April 20, 2014, 05:43:02 PM »
Quote
Learn something knew every day.
True! I admit I always learn some new detail when correcting people's mistakes. :-)

My error.  I knew her sister was a Grand-Ducal Highness (HGDH) but I thought it occurred with her marriage with Nicolas II's brother, Serge.

All the Russian grand dukes and grand duchesses were Imperial Highnesses. And it's only in English, Hungarian and the Romance languages that Ludwig IV's and Sergey's titles were the same. In German and Russian Ludwig IV was Großherzog / веиликий герцог, litterally grand duke, while Sergey Alexandrovich was Großfürst / веиликий князь, litterally grand prince. The same distinction applies to their spouses Alice and Elisabeth.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2014, 05:54:53 PM by Превед »
Берёзы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и берёзы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline Превед

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #51 on: April 20, 2014, 06:06:29 PM »
Have you people never played or heard Beethoven's "Für Elise"? :-)

The name itself was more popular in the form Elisa. A well-known bearer being Princess Elisa Radziwill, the non-ebenbürtige love of Emperor Wilhelm I.

« Last Edit: April 20, 2014, 06:29:38 PM by Превед »
Берёзы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и берёзы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline AGRBear

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #52 on: April 20, 2014, 06:12:34 PM »
Wow!  You were quick and caught what I eliminated because it was wrong.  Serge was not Nicholas II's brother. I have no idea where that came from...(Bear shakes her head in disbelief ....)

AGRBear
"What is true by lamplight is not always true by sunlight."

Joubert, Pensees, No. 152

Offline Превед

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #53 on: April 20, 2014, 06:19:20 PM »
I am just a little mad at people for not acknowleding all the medieval Adelheidises / Adeleides / Alysses / Alixes that undoubtedly inspired Alice's choice of the name:

Saint Adelheidis of Burgundy, Holy Roman Empress (931–999)
Adelheidis of Aquitania, first Capetian Queen of France (ca. 950-1004)
Saint Adelheidis of Vilich, Abess (ca. 970-1015/1018)
Adelheidis of Normandy, Countess of Burgundy, aunt of William the Conqueror (ca. 1002 – 1038)
Берёзы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и берёзы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline CountessKate

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #54 on: April 21, 2014, 04:27:53 AM »
I am just a little mad at people for not acknowleding all the medieval Adelheidises / Adeleides / Alysses / Alixes that undoubtedly inspired Alice's choice of the name:

Saint Adelheidis of Burgundy, Holy Roman Empress (931–999)
Adelheidis of Aquitania, first Capetian Queen of France (ca. 950-1004)
Saint Adelheidis of Vilich, Abess (ca. 970-1015/1018)
Adelheidis of Normandy, Countess of Burgundy, aunt of William the Conqueror (ca. 1002 – 1038)

While there is no evidence that Alice had any interest in medieval Alixes or variants, there is direct evidence that the name was inspired by simple practicalities, as AGRBear quoted from Sarushka above in #46. In Alice Grand Duchess of Hesse: Letters to Her Majesty the Queen, , Alice wrote to Queen Victoria about her baby's names on 24 June 1872, p. 248: " 'Alix' we gave for 'Alice', as they murder my name here: 'Aliicé' they pronounce it, so we thought 'Alix' could not so easily be spoilt".  Admittedly the authority of Greg King finding it via Buxhoeveden's book does not give the quote much weight but Buxhoeveden was presumably quoting in turn from the letters.  These are available online:https://archive.org/details/alicegrandduches04alic

Offline Превед

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #55 on: April 21, 2014, 06:10:44 AM »
While there is no evidence that Alice had any interest in medieval Alixes or variants, there is direct evidence that the name was inspired by simple practicalities, as AGRBear quoted from Sarushka above in #46. In Alice Grand Duchess of Hesse: Letters to Her Majesty the Queen, , Alice wrote to Queen Victoria about her baby's names on 24 June 1872, p. 248: " 'Alix' we gave for 'Alice', as they murder my name here: 'Aliicé' they pronounce it, so we thought 'Alix' could not so easily be spoilt".  Admittedly the authority of Greg King finding it via Buxhoeveden's book does not give the quote much weight but Buxhoeveden was presumably quoting in turn from the letters.  These are available online:https://archive.org/details/alicegrandduches04alic

Yes, first and foremost it was a practical choice.
But where did she get the form Alix from? I don't think it was used at all in her own time, she must have found it in royal genealogies or historians she talked to must have told her about it. She didn't just make it up.
« Last Edit: April 21, 2014, 06:15:35 AM by Превед »
Берёзы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и берёзы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline Превед

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #56 on: April 21, 2014, 06:40:59 AM »
There are a few examples of Alixes after the Middle Ages and before the name was revived by Princess Alice:

The Blessed Alix Le Clerc (1576 - 1622), a Lorrainian nun who founded the (Chanoinesses de Saint-Augustin de la) Congrégation Notre-Dame dedicated to the education of girls.
'Madame Alix', aka Léonne-Julie Bournonville (1748 - 1826), famous ballet dancer who also performed at the Mariinsky, aunt of Auguste Bournonville, married to Claude Alix de La Faye, dentist to the Queen of sweden.
(Françoise-)Alix de Lamartine (1776 - 1829), writer and mother of the famous poet Alphonse de Lamartine.
Alix Joffroy (1844 - 1908), French psychiatrist, NB a man. (Alix is also both a placename and a (rare) man's name in France.)
« Last Edit: April 21, 2014, 06:42:49 AM by Превед »
Берёзы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и берёзы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline Превед

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #57 on: April 21, 2014, 11:46:19 AM »
I must say I'm rather shocked that it's not more well-known who OTMA, Alix, Alice and ultimately Queen Victoria's matrilineal ancestress was, with all the focus on QV as one of the world's most influential and longest-reigning female monarchs, her role as matriarch and the hemophilia transmitted via the female line.

Берёзы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и берёзы», 1843 / 1856)

Offline Clemence

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #58 on: April 21, 2014, 02:00:40 PM »
I must say I'm rather shocked that it's not more well-known who OTMA, Alix, Alice and ultimately Queen Victoria's matrilineal ancestress was, with all the focus on QV as one of the world's most influential and longest-reigning female monarchs, her role as matriarch and the hemophilia transmitted via the female line.



Do you have some reason to believe that the gene that was responsable for hemophilia of the descendants of Queen Victoria had any relation to her ancestors?
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Offline Превед

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Re: What was Alexandra's Native Language and Maiden Name?
« Reply #59 on: April 21, 2014, 03:15:11 PM »
Do you have some reason to believe that the gene that was responsable for hemophilia of the descendants of Queen Victoria had any relation to her ancestors?

Yes, of course. It was either a mutation in one of her ancestors, but probably a rather recent one, or in herself.
What I meant is that with her matrilineal pedigree being examined closely in search of signs of hemophilia, I'm surprised her earliest known matrilineal ancestress isn't more known.
Especially since it's also the matrilineal ancestry of King Louis XIV of France and Wilhelm II of Germany.

« Last Edit: April 21, 2014, 03:30:22 PM by Превед »
Берёзы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

(Афанасий Фет: «Ивы и берёзы», 1843 / 1856)