Author Topic: The British Queen Responsible for the Murder of Tsar Nicholas ll and His Family?  (Read 2610 times)

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Offline Jeremiah

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Hi,

I don’t know whether this issue has been brought up before here. If it did, then please let me know the thread that dealt with it, because I was not able to find it.

So, the question is about an article I came across on Royal Foibles, May 6, 2015, which examines the “involvement” of Queen Mary in the death of Nicholas and his Family. From the article:

“According to Lady Colin Campbell’s recent biography of the Queen Mother, the meanest girl of all toward Princess Mary among her extended family while she was growing up was Princess Alix of Hesse-Darmstadt, later Empress Alexandra Feodorovna of Russia. Mary and her itinerant family often spent holidays in Hesse-Darmstadt, where putting her in her lowly place was among Princess Alix’s favourite pastimes.”

Later on, the article gives an account by Prince Edward, according to which it was his mother the Queen that insisted on not accepting the Romanov family in UK. So, according to the article, Mary was actually giving a payback to Alexandra for what she had “suffered” from her in the past.

For the article: http://www.royalfoibles.com/the-british-queen-partially-to-blame-for-the-murder-of-tsar-nicholas-ll-and-his-family/

Thanks.
« Last Edit: July 29, 2017, 12:22:12 PM by Jeremiah »

Offline Jeremiah

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I should have said that my question is mainly with regard to Alix. Knowing that she has always been a shy person -especially when she was young- and so delicate in her manners, it really made me feel strange to read that she was “mean” toward Princess Mary at that young age. Behaving in the manner described by Lady Colin it’s really not the kind of Alexandra I have come to known.

Does anyone know why was such a thing said about Alexandra?

Offline Превед

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“According to Lady Colin Campbell’s recent biography of the Queen Mother, the meanest girl of all toward Princess Mary among her extended family while she was growing up was Princess Alix of Hesse-Darmstadt, later Empress Alexandra Feodorovna of Russia. Mary and her itinerant family often spent holidays in Hesse-Darmstadt, where putting her in her lowly place was among Princess Alix’s favourite pastimes.”

Where exactly in Hesse-Darmstadt did the Tecks holiday? Certainly not in any of the grand-ducal residences, as they were not direct and close family. Not in Darmstadt, which was not a fashionable holiday destination for anyone. In any of the spa towns in the Hessian hinterland, like Bad Nauheim? I didn't think the Tecks could afford those fashionable watering holes and even if they did, how could little Princess Alix (5 years younger than Princess May) stuck in Darmstadt, Romrod or Windsor influence how her distant morganatic cousin was treated in any of the spa towns in her father's grand duchy? I think the blogger and / or Lady Colin Campbell confuse the Tecks with the Battenbergs at Heiligenberg outside Darmstadt or just invent a story to shock.

Do note that this blogger in the comments below the post discredits herself by claiming that King George V cavorted with prostitutes in Bognor Regis! And she has little understanding of the complex nuances of German princely politics when she claims the Hessian and other German royal families objected to Wilhelm II as a "nouveau-riche emperor".
« Last Edit: July 30, 2017, 06:52:57 PM by Превед »
Березы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

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

Offline DNAgenie

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Where exactly in Hesse-Darmstadt did the Tecks holiday? Certainly not in any of the grand-ducal residences, as they were not direct and close family. Not in Darmstadt, which was not a fashionable holiday destination for anyone.
There is a mention in Alix's letter to her brother Ernie on 22June/4 July 1889, at Darmstadt, that 'Uncle Francis Teck [May's father] comes tomorrow.'
The next reference to the Tecks in Alix's letters is on 5/17 Jan 1892. 'Darling Eddy is no more, it is too awful. One cannot believe it, it seems like a horrible dream. Poor May - how broken she must be - such short joy and happiness it is perfectly terrible.... The Dr. has forbidden Papa to go to the funeral, as every excitement & great agitation, as well as the journey, is bad for him.'

Offline Jeremiah

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Has anyone else come across other incidents from Alix’s young age that suggest she was “mean” in the way she was described above?

Offline LisaDavidson

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I would say "no" in answer to your question. I'm sure Alix could be mean on occasion - she was only human - but I've never heard her described this way. Both the Hesses and the Tecks were rather poor by royal standards. Those responsible for the murder of the Imperial Family were the Bolsheviks.

Offline Превед

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Both the Hesses and the Tecks were rather poor by royal standards.

The Tecks, as morganatic hanger-ons and minor appanagists were not on the same financial level as the Hesses, reigning royalty. It makes more sense to say that while neither were royal upper class like the Romanovs and the immediate British RF, the Hesses were royal middle class and the Tecks were poor / "on welfare".
« Last Edit: August 12, 2017, 02:14:15 PM by Превед »
Березы севера мне милы,—
Их грустный, опущённый вид,
Как речь безмолвная могилы,
Горячку сердца холодит.

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

Offline Jeremiah

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Those responsible for the murder of the Imperial Family were the Bolsheviks.

Of course it is the Bolsheviks who hold the full responsibility for the murder of the family, but how would you explain Edward’s story of being an eye-witness of the incident when Queen Mary denied granting asylum to them? Gore Vidal writes that he was told by George V’s first son himself, Prince Edward, about his account as an eye-witness of the scene. Nevertheless, Vidal concludes that Queen Mary’s role in deciding the fate of her imperial relatives was ultimately based on justifiable self-preservation (out of fear for a revolution in England) rather than solely upon malice.

Offline LisaDavidson

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I'm sure the British Royal Family later regretted not allowing the Romanovs asylum. At the time of the February Revolution, Empress Alexandra was very much disliked in most foreign countries, including Britain. She was not then regarded as a victim of the Revolution as she would be later.

But I consider it imperative that the responsibility for the murder of the Imperial Family be placed where it belongs - on the Bolsheviks, who ultimately killed 10s of millions of Russian people.

Offline DNAgenie

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I'm sure the British Royal Family later regretted not allowing the Romanovs asylum. At the time of the February Revolution, Empress Alexandra was very much disliked in most foreign countries, including Britain. She was not then regarded as a victim of the Revolution as she would be later.
When the question of the British receiving the Russian royal family in Britain was first proposed, it was a political question, and was treated as such. It was not until later that King George and Queen Mary realized that the family was in physical danger, and by then it was too late to do anything.

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how would you explain Edward’s story of being an eye-witness of the incident when Queen Mary denied granting asylum to them? Gore Vidal writes that he was told by George V’s first son himself, Prince Edward, about his account as an eye-witness of the scene.
There would have been more than one discussion and many such scenes, as the situation developed. There is little doubt that King George did ask for the British govt's first invitation to be withdrawn, and it may well have been at Queen Mary's instigation as she probably read the papers, while George probably didn't. But at that stage it was a political question, and family loyalty didn't come into it.

Offline CountessKate

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Lord Stamfordham, in transmitting the views of George V to the politicians, wrote that “from all he [George V] hears and reads in the press, the residence in this country of the ex-Emperor and Empress would be strongly resented by the public, and would undoubtedly compromise the position of the King and Queen..."  It seems very unlikely that George V wouldn't have read any newspapers, it was just the sort of thing a person of his class and views would have done, and moreover, the King received "letters from people in all classes of life, known or unknown to him, saying how much that matter is being discussed, not only in clubs, but by working men, and that the Labour Members in the House of Commons are expressing adverse opinions to the proposal [to offer asylum to the Imperial family]."  George V may have discussed the matter with Queen Mary, but it hardly needed her instigating a change of mind - he was obviously getting it from all sides.

Offline JamesAPrattIII

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I must add to this
The Russian Revolution really shook up King George V he blamed it mainly on Alexandra not his friend Nicholas II

At this time 1917 England had a new PM David Lloyd George. To put it mildly he and King George V didn't get along very well during the WW I years.

As for Queen Mary nobody ever refered to her as the beloved Queen Mary. Being German didn't help in 1917 England where anti-German feeling were running high

In 1917 England there was a lot of anti-government feeling . People were accusing King George V of being disloyal ect. Hence the name change to Windsor.

Offline Maria Sisi

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I must add to this
The Russian Revolution really shook up King George V he blamed it mainly on Alexandra not his friend Nicholas II

At this time 1917 England had a new PM David Lloyd George. To put it mildly he and King George V didn't get along very well during the WW I years.

As for Queen Mary nobody ever refered to her as the beloved Queen Mary. Being German didn't help in 1917 England where anti-German feeling were running high

In 1917 England there was a lot of anti-government feeling . People were accusing King George V of being disloyal ect. Hence the name change to Windsor.

Out of interest how well did George know Alexandra? Everybody knows the closeness between George and Nicholas, due to their mothers being sisters, and the holidays and Denmark. But we also know a lot of Alexandra visiting England, especially after her mother died. I don't know the years of George's traveling, as a school boy and as a naval officer, but surely they saw some of each other. And even then he would have heard family talking about her in person and correspondence. After all she almost became his sister-in-law!

So they weren't super close and being different genders makes it all different but still. I just find it odd that, as family, George couldn't absolve Alexandra just as he did Nicholas. Surely when he saw all the reports, facts and street gossip, from Ambassador Buchanan, George would know enough about Alexandra to say, "Oh poor Alicky. Somewhere along the way she lost her way, how terrible" just as he said "poor Nicky. He always had his heart in the right place and meant well." Instead he blames her for EVERYTHING, as if he believed every report and knew nothing about her.

When other family members talk you get almost the same tone as well. Sympathy and sadness for Nicholas and some sympathy but lots of scorn added in for her. I don't even think Marie Antoniette was that toxic among the foreign royals. 
 

Offline Kalafrana

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I think it is only fair to mention that Lady Colin Campbell (the title comes from a very brief marriage - barely a year - to the younger brother of the then Duke of Argyll) is primarily known in this country for peddling scandalous titbits in the guise of biography. One of her dubious claims concerns the Queen Mother's maternity. According to her, the Countess of Strathmore was desperate for another child (after having eight!), but couldn't have any more, and the Earl duly produced the Queen Mother (and later her youngest brother) with the family's French governess.

It would be worth having a look at James Pope-Hennessey's biography of Queen Mary to see whether the Tecks spent much time at Darmstadt, but I rather think not. Queen Victoria was certainly fond of her cousin Princess Mary Adelaide, and Alexandra and Queen Mary presumably met from time to time in England as girls, but I doubt that Mary had much opportunity to be 'mean' to Alexandra. First, five years is a big age difference, and, second, I suspected that Alexandra was distinctly cossetted at Victoria's court. Maybe Mary once called her a spoilt brat, brat I can't imagine anything more than that.

Ann

Offline Kalafrana

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I should have said that I didn't think Alexandra would have had much opportunity to be 'mean' to Mary, rather than the other way round, by reason of the age gap if nothing else.

As to family views of Alexandra, Princess Marie Louise, who was the same age, was fond of her, but clearly thought her misguided.

Ann