Author Topic: NEW LETTERS about Ella and Wilhelm  (Read 4985 times)

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Offline Bambi

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Re: NEW LETTERS about Ella and Wilhelm
« Reply #45 on: December 29, 2017, 02:52:18 PM »
I just couldn't imagine Ella as a thirteen-year-old girl (or at any age, for that matter) having physical relations with someone and being impregnated out of wedlock.

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Her letters, especially those prior to her becoming a nun, suggest a girly, playful and flirtatious personality.

Even though one can perfectly be playful and flirtatious without ending up impregnated by every man that catches one's fancy, I spot a certain contradiction suggestive of a madonna vs. whore complex in your comments, my lady. :-)

I'm not exactly sure what to make out of your comment. I never suggested that Ella was the epitome of saintliness, holiness or perfection, nor did I suggest that she was a whore. Being girly, playful and flirtatious does not make one promiscuous.

Offline Kalafrana

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Re: NEW LETTERS about Ella and Wilhelm
« Reply #46 on: December 30, 2017, 04:23:29 AM »
According to John Rohl, Wilhelm did have some attachments as a young man, before his accession.He had two illegitimate children by different women, who were paid to keep quiet. However, there is no hint of any physical interest in young girls.

Given Wilhelm's bad press, if there was any hint of paedophile tendencies to be found, it would have been found by now, and widely publicised.

No, I think the worst that happened is that the pair of them were sitting on a sofa, got a little carried away, and indulged in some experimental  kissing and hand-holding.

Ann

 

Offline DNAgenie

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Re: NEW LETTERS about Ella and Wilhelm
« Reply #47 on: December 30, 2017, 06:21:00 PM »
Something happened between April and September 1878 to change the relationship between Wilhelm and Ella.

Until April Willy had been desperately in love with Ella, and his parents understood that he wished to marry her. Wilhelm's change of mind, and his intention to marry Dona instead, came so suddenly that his father was taken by surprise. Frederick had expressed his dismay at his son's 'sudden changing of the saddle', especially as 'he had already declared himself to Ella'.

When Wilhelm married Dona in 1881 Queen Victoria was still thinking of Ella. She wrote to Vicky 'I could not think but with regret of what might have been. But I will say no more about the painful past. That is over.'

Offline Kalafrana

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Re: NEW LETTERS about Ella and Wilhelm
« Reply #48 on: December 31, 2017, 04:18:13 AM »
'Something happened between April and September 1878 to change the relationship between Wilhelm and Ella.'

Indeed, but a seduction is unlikely.

Wilhelm was well-known in later life for failing to think things through properly. Perhaps he blurted out a proposal, perhaps he got carried away and tried kissing her - something which Ella, at 13 going on 14 - was too young to appreciate.

Ann

Offline Bambi

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Re: NEW LETTERS about Ella and Wilhelm
« Reply #49 on: December 31, 2017, 05:50:52 AM »
I imagine that, had something like a seduction occurred, Queen Victoria was likely to have been furious.  But her tone in her correspondence suggests that, while she did believe that whatever Wilhelm did was wrong, she still had a sympathetic approach. I could be wrong, of course, but I would imagine her to have very little sympathy if she was to discover that there had been a seduction.

Itís sad for Wilhelm, of course, because I think Ella always held a special place in his heart. Fortunately for Ella, though, I believe she was content in the marriage she did end up pursuing.

Even though her correspondence suggests that she may not have felt as empty towards Wilhelm as originally perceived, I definitely donít think she was ever in love with him. Young as she was, the most she probably ever felt was a fleeting schoolgirl crush, finding some delight in knowing that she was loved and admired by this young man, perhaps feeling pressured and wanting to return his affection and experimenting, if lovey-dovey behaviour like hand-holding, kissing, etc., occurred between them.

Offline Kalafrana

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Re: NEW LETTERS about Ella and Wilhelm
« Reply #50 on: December 31, 2017, 06:33:23 AM »
I would add that Wilhelm's paternal grandfather, Wilhelm I would also have been furious. He seems to have been a gentleman of traditional standards - and they certainly did not include seducing unmarried girls of one's own class, still less when they were still in the schoolroom. In June 1878 Wilhelm I was shot and sufficiently seriously injured to have been in danger of his life,the more so since he was 81, but had his eldest grandson and successor-but-one seduced a young cousin I'm sure that he would, at the very least, have sent him to cool his ardour in some distant fortress on the Polish frontier.

Ann

Offline DNAgenie

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Re: NEW LETTERS about Ella and Wilhelm
« Reply #51 on: December 31, 2017, 03:36:13 PM »
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I would add that Wilhelm's paternal grandfather, Wilhelm I would also have been furious. He seems to have been a gentleman of traditional standards - and they certainly did not include seducing unmarried girls of one's own class, still less when they were still in the schoolroom.

Oh, no, I can't agree. Wilhelm I did exactly that himself. What about his pursuit of Elisa Radziwill?  And while he was pursuing her, he slept with several of her best friends, all of his own class and all very young. The traditional standard for German Princes was to sleep with any available female without a second thought. They had strings of illegitimate children, many of them unacknowledged until now, when DNA-testing is starting to confirm a number of family stories.

Offline Kalafrana

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Re: NEW LETTERS about Ella and Wilhelm
« Reply #52 on: January 01, 2018, 03:45:54 AM »
As I understand it, the issue with Elisa Radziwill was whether Wilhelm I should be permitted to marry her. I'm happy to see evidence that he pursued young girls in his youth.

As far as I'm aware Prussian princes were less lecherous than many. The two exceptions were:

1) Friedrich Wilhelm II (1786-97), who had several mistresses and seven illegitimate children. His son, Friedrich Wilhelm III (1797-1840), father of Wilhelm I, reacted against this and had a happy marriage. Following Queen Louise's death he made a morganatic second marriage. Two of his sons, Friedrich Wilhelm IV (1840-61) and Carl, also had happy marriages, though FW IV was childless. 

2) Prince August of Prussia (1779-1843), a nephew of Frederick the Great. He never married, but had 11 illegitimate children by two mistresses. While visiting London after the fall of Napoleon, he caught the eye of Princess Charlotte, but did no more than flirt with her.

Ann

Offline DNAgenie

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Re: NEW LETTERS about Ella and Wilhelm
« Reply #53 on: January 01, 2018, 05:57:21 PM »
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As far as I'm aware Prussian princes were less lecherous than many.

They were more discreet than the earlier generations, but that is about all you can say for them.

Wilhelm I had at least one child by Elisa Radziwill and probably three. He also had illegitimate children by various court ladies after Augusta kicked him out of their house for a period before he became King. His elder brother Friedrich Wilhelm 4th had a daughter to a lady in waiting of his sister Charlotte, wife of the Czar. Wilhelm's younger brother Prince Albrecht had an son by a woman he married, although he was still married to Princess Marianne of the Netherlands.  According to John Rohl, Wilhelm II had at least two illegitimate children. His son, Crown Prince Frederick Wilhelm, had an illegitimate son.

I have been in contact with several descendants of Wilhelm I, Prince Albrecht and Crown Prince Frederick Wilhelm, and all can produce evidence to that effect.

Offline Kalafrana

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Re: NEW LETTERS about Ella and Wilhelm
« Reply #54 on: January 02, 2018, 10:06:53 AM »
This is certainly interesting, but seducing and impregnating a 13-year-old first cousin is still, I think, something which would lead to serious repercussions.

By 1878 Wilhelm I, whatever his previous misdeeds, was a monarch who had the dignity and reputation of his dynasty to maintain. I cannot see any contemporary ruler simply leaving his grandson enjoying a comfortable university existence in these circumstances. I seem to remember that Wilhelm II dealt with the Crown Prince's scandalous behaviour by sending him on an official visit to India and, later, posting him to Danzig.

What about Ella's father? Surely he would have taken the matter up with Wilhelm's father and grandfather? Would he not have forbidden Wilhelm the house?

And what about Queen Victoria? after the deaths of 1878, if not before, she was particularly fond of her Hesse grandchildren. She also seems to have been particularly fond of Wilhelm, though hardly blind to his faults. Would that have been the case had he seduced one of her favourite granddaughters?

Ann